Archive for April, 2014

Woven Chain Photo Album
April 28th, 2014 | Link

Side view of decorative spine stitching

This is a binding that long-time readers may recognize, since I’ve used it a few times  (starting with Jane’s & Patrick’s wedding guest book). It’s the Woven Chain binding from Keith Smith’s 1- 2- & 3-Section Sewings book, done as a photo album.

I always love the effect of this binding, especially done up with a luxe book cloth (in this case a slubby silk-like book cloth from Asahi) and beautiful Japanese paper.

I always make these photo albums quite large (usually folded down from a full-sized sheet of Rives BFK, so around 11-5/8″ wide by 7-3/4″ high) but I think they would also be lovely in a smaller size to fit 4″ x6″ photos.

Green and Red Mums Flat Back Books
April 14th, 2014 | Link

Green Mums flat back book

A few of the books I made recently have hand-sewn silk endbands, from the book Headbands: How to Work Them by Jane Greenfield and Jenny Hille. They aren’t difficult to do and add a nice finishing touch to books like these two, which have a luxe feel to them. The green chrysanthemums paper has shown up before here, notably in the woven chain guest book I made for my friends Jane and Patrick — she picked the paper and I keep getting more of it. Last time I ordered some in the red, too.

Close up of endband in alternating red and green threads

These are a little smaller than the others because I had to trim the sections — the ends of the sheets were damaged in shipping. Finished size is about 6-1/4″ by 9-1/4″; 160 pages Mohawk Superfine Eggshell in Soft White; red mums and green mums Chiyogami papers from The Paper Place.

Buckram and Cotlin Flat Back Books
April 7th, 2014 | Link

Spine detail of several stacked books

I made quite a stack of books over Christmas — 35 by the time I was done, some full cloth and some quarter cloth with various cover papers. I was trying to use up all the book cloth and paper that I’ve acquired over time so I can think about what I want to do next. I’ve written before that I’ve thought about giving up binding as a hobby, and then I had a surge in interest, and then it waned again.

I took a class called The Ideal Sketchbook from Michael Burke at the San Francisco Center for the Book a few summers ago, and these are not that book structure (the ideal sketchbook spine is rounded, and the covers attached in a specific way to allow the book to be opened flatter). But the book I made in the class used buckram for the cover, which I’d never used before, and I liked the way it looks and feels — simple and with kind of a waxy, polished finish. The darker gray journals here are covered with buckram, and the lighter one is cotlin, which is a linen-cotton blend without the polished finish. I also made matching endbands, folding the book cloth over linen hemp cord.

These are journals that I would write in, if I wrote that much. I’ve actually set aside one of the charcoal buckram ones for myself, if I ever fill the journal I have in progress.

Spine detail of dark gray full cloth book

Finished size about 6-1/2″ wide by 9-3/4″ high; 160 pages in Mohawk Superfine Eggshell Soft White (100 lb), which is my favorite text-weight paper. The board is .098″ Davey board, so these books have heft and are really pleasing to hold, especially the buckram  — if you’re the kind of person who gets enjoyment out of holding a nice, solid book.



My name is Shannon Hale. This blog is on indefinite hiatus, but it contains archives of the last 10 years of posts about bookbinding, knitting, sewing. and other random things in my life.


2014: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2013: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2012: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2011: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2010: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2009: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2008: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2007: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2006: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

2005: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12