The Simplified Binding





Instructor: Karen Hanmer
Skill Level: Advanced
Materials Fee: $80.00
Length of workshop: 3 days

Date: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, June 26, 27 and 28, 2019



Workshop description:

The Simplified Binding has an elegant, streamlined look. Our workshop model will feature a spine of thinned leather, rolled leather endbands, and boards that are attached to the text block after being covered with decorative paper. Leather hinges finish the interior. In this three-day workshop you will become more comfortable working with leather and explore which features of a binding are necessary for function and protection of the text block, and the additional refinements that can transform a book into an elegant showpiece. Students will reinforce their skills in marking up and sewing on supports, preparing boards, rounding, lining the spine for support vs. aesthetics, and paring leather.

Materials/equipment to be supplied by students:
Please bring a Scharfix paring machine if at all possible. You will not be required to share it with the class.
bone or teflon folder
straightedge that can be cut against – this can be the ruler
X-acto, scalpel, or Olfa knife and a few extra blades
9” x 12” cutting mat
beeswax for sewing
freshly-sharpened leather-paring knife
strop and honing compound to hone edge on paring knife
10 double-edged razor blades– the same as used for shaving
small and large glue brushes
sanding block and sandpaper – #120 and #240
PVA glue
small container with lid for PVA
small container for paste
waste paper
weight (paper-covered brick provided by FOBA)
sponge and a dish for water
old washcloth/dishcloth to keep book and workspace clean
square with base – found at Talas #TTB041001, or some device to keep text block square
backing hammer
signature punching jig – instructions to make one here:      
sewing frame – a collapsible sewing frame can be made from 2 bar clamps and a dowel or metal rod that fits through the hole at the end of the bar; an example of the clamp is shown here –
finishing press – a collapsible travel model is available here–ask for 9” between the screws
backing hammer
a small piece of non-skid shelf lining
pencil and paper for notes

microspatula – found at Talas #TTB002001 or similar
dividers – found at Talas # TTB033004 or similar
dust mask for sanding

Materials/equipment to be provided by instructor:
text block and decorative paper
book board
Stonehenge for linings and fills
sewing supports
Japanese tissue to reinforce endsheets
book board
packing tape for gluing up
#18 thread for sewing
#12 thread for endband cores
binding and endsheet models
photocopying of handout with complete instructions and bibliography
roll of blue masking tape
two Scharfix paring machines
Sharps container

Prerequisite experience/skills needed for this class:
How to thread a needle and wax the thread
How to fold paper using a bone folder and assemble signatures
How to tie a weaver’s knot
How to sew a kettle stitch
How to determine paper grain & match the grain of different book components
How to glue up paper or cloth to cover binder’s board
How to prepare book for drying

Has made, independent of a class:
Simple sewn text block for codex book
Book sewn on tapes or cords
Historical binding

Other prerequisites
Students should be making at least several sewn books per year independently outside of a workshop setting, and should have some experience with thinning leather on the Scharfix