Monday, September 26, 2016


Fabric Covered Books
 
 CEG Day Group - Two Full-Day Course
 

What to bring to the October 6th meeting
 
 
Kit Fee:         $12 for instructor-provided kit (correct change, please)

 



You will be making (a) one or two pamphlet books and (b) a book with long stitch binding and a fold-over flap.

 
General:

Equipment/Tools:
See the items on the list sent to you previously. Bring all items mentioned except:  brass or steel weight, curved needle; binders clips.

Fabrics: Your selected fabric outer covers can be decorated with stitching and other adornments, as you choose to do prior to the class – or not decorated at all. Avoid decorations that are particularly “lumpy” (bulky jewelry, for example). Inside covers should not be decorated.

Papers: Your kit will include 40 sheets of 8.5" x 11" 25 lb paper which should be sufficient to do both of the book forms mentioned below. However, for the second book, you may prefer to use other paper that you have selected and cut to 8.5" x 11", such as sketch book paper, varied papers – papers that you would like to write or draw on. For this book you would likely want to have 5 sets of 5 or 6 sheets of 8.5" x 11" paper in each.

Needles: You will need needles suitable to the thread you choose for both projects – that is, with an eye large enough to accommodate your selected thread(s).

Pamphlet Book(s)
You will make your choice of either (a) two small pamphlet books with a finished size of 5.5" high x 4.25" wide when closed or (b) one large pamphlet book with a finished size of 8.5" high x 5.5" wide when closed.

If you choose to make two small pamphlet books, bring:
  • Two outer cover fabrics, each measuring 7.5" high by 10.25" wide
  • Two pieces of fabric for the inside covers – complementing each of your cover fabrics – each measuring 4.5" high by 7.5" wide
If you choose to make one large pamphlet book, bring:
  • One piece of outer cover fabric measuring 13" wide x 10.5" high
  • One piece of complementary fabric for inner covers measuring 10" wide by 7.5" high
 
As well, bring thread(s) that complement your fabric choice(s), avoiding any that is particularly stretchy: linen thread, embroidery floss, perle cotton, crochet cotton, etc.

You will have sufficient 8.5" x 11" 25 lb paper in your kit* to make whichever of these books you choose.

 
Long Stitch Bound Book with Fold-Over Flap
Provided in your kit is a piece of FlexiFirm (9" x 15") which will be the foundation for the cover and fold-over flap closure for this book.

You should bring:
  • Fabric for outer cover measuring 10 ½" high by 17" wide. (Fabric decorated in a previous class or workshop – e.g., “Stupendous Stitching” – might make a great cover for this book.)
  • Fabric for inner cover measuring 9" high by 15" wide.
  • Book closure. Some ideas: button with straps or ribbons; buckle with fabric strap; elastic headbands; frog closure; toggle closure
  • Your choice of thread for stitching – strong but not stretchy – such as linen, embroidery floss, perle cotton, crochet cotton, decorative fibres.
  • Optional: beads for decoration of thread tails. Must be able to fit on selected thread used for binding.

 

Sunday, September 18, 2016

As a subset of our chapter of CBBAG, The Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild, a group of like mined souls formed the Alternate Book Group to investigate, as the name says, alternative books structures.  Alternative to the traditional book structures that we've already studied.

We each take a turn researching a structure and then sharing that knowledge with group.  The aim is to learn how to make a new structure that we can adapt to our own needs.

My book of choice was the Star Book.  I've always been interested in it's carousel like appearance and it's layered look.  It seemed to have so many applications.  Anyway, that was the one that I chose to explore and teach to the group.

Here are some of my examples:



This shows the sewn spine which is not usual with a star book.  This was my nod to traditional bookbinding and would give the book a sturdy structure so that it could be used like a codex.


This shows the interior pages.  I used lyrics from Bird on a Wire for my content.  The inner page is just the black outline part.
      
This shows the star shape when opened.


This is the cover of the Bee book.  It also has a sewn spine.

This shows the interiors pages.  I used quotes from The Life of Bees for the content and followed the honeycomb path for the text.


 This is one of the first pages for It's Complicated.  It uses increasingly more complicated cuts as the book progresses.


Three colours of paper help bring out the depth of the book pages.

 

Stopping By Trees uses the word of a Robert Frost poem as content.


The images are printed on transparencies and the book looks eerie when placed on a glass stand and illuminated from below.








Thursday, December 12, 2013

I just wanted to take a moment, on behalf of Jan and myself, to thank you all for your participation in Fabric Covered Books.  Your creativity, ingenuity and enthusiasm made the class a wonderful experience for the both of us.  You were a teacher's delight and I speak from experience.

I mentioned some worthwhile bookbinding videos on you tube and I'd like to post the links for quick reference.  Sea Lemon has an excellent series of DIY bookbinding tutorials that I'm sure you'll find useful.  You'll find her channel here:  Sea Lemon

For those of you who'd like to learn more about bookbinding, Sage Reynolds, a professional binder, has a wonderful series of tutorials.  You'll find his work here:  Sage Reynolds

Have a safe and happy holiday.  Merry Christmas to all.

Friday, December 6, 2013

The Last Day

It's our last class together and a chance to finish up any outstanding books.  Bring your favourite completed items for show and tell.  Also bring any books that you need to finish up or want some help to complete.

We'll also take some time to discuss problem areas --- covering the corner of your boards comes to mind --- and see if we can develop some alternate strategies.

Tools needed for the last class:  whatever you need to complete your projects.  Jan will be bringing her selection of waxed linen thread so if you ran short, you'll be able to pick some up.

Don't forget that it's the Christmas Pot Luck lunch!

Jan and I are looking forward to seeing everyone there.

Thursday, November 14, 2013


Making Fabric Books


Class 5  Sewing Over Tapes  - Exposed Spine Binding

Paper Preparation

1.      Determine the size of the paper you plan to use.  i.e. 8 ½ x 11”  or 8 ½ x 5 ½ “ (standard sheet cut in half)  or custom size.
2.      Determine the number of pages in the signature.
3.      Ideally, the grain should run parallel to the spine of the book.
4.      Fold the paper in half.
5.      Nest the papers inside each other and align the folds.
6.      Create the desired number of signatures.

 
Punching Holes in Signatures

1.      Open your phonebook to the middle to use as your cradle.
2.      Place the first signature, opened to the middle, into the fold of the phone book.
3.      Make a stitching template, using a 2” wide strip of paper that is the same height as your paper.  Fold the strip in half lengthwise and mark the stitching holes on the inside of the fold line.

a.       To measure for the stitching holes, lay your tapes across the template with one tape lying at the middle and the other two tapes evenly spaced above and below the first tape.
b.      From the top of the template, mark a hole at least ½ “ from the top.  Mark the next holes just above the top tape and just below it.
c.       Mark holes above and below the middle tape.
d.      Mark holes above and below the bottom tape.
e.       Mark the final stitch hole at least ½ “ from the bottom of the template.

 


4.      Place the template into the centre fold of your pages in the cradle.  Align the edges carefully.
5.      Use your awl or piercing tool to punch the holes indicated on the stitching template.  Hold your piercing tool perpendicular to the paper to make sure the holes go through the folds of the signature.
6.      Repeat for all signatures.  Use an arrow or letter H to mark the top or head of the signatures.  This will make sure that the holes on the signatures line up when you begin to sew.


Cover Preparation

1.      This book has an open spine so you will be making a separate front and back cover.
2.      Determine the dimensions of your front and back covers.  Your covers will be ¼ “ taller and about 1/8 “ wider than the pages.  The covers will align, on the left, with the folds of the signatures.
3.      Determine the number and width and length of your tapes.  The example uses three tapes approximately 1” wide.  The length is 2” + 2” + the width of the spine  (measure the spine width of the stack of folded signatures).
4.      Decide how you will edge your cover.  i.e. wrapped edges or decorative stitching on the edges.  This will determine the dimensions of your fabric.  Refer to the General Rules of Thumb in the overview section to determine the measurements of your fabric.
5.      Decorate the cover as you wish.  Keep embellishments away from the area that will be covered by the tapes.

 
Stitching the Signatures

1.      Determine the thread length needed by measuring the height of the book once for each signature and once for the kettle stitches between each signature and tying off the ends.
2.      Use binder clips to hold the pages of the signature together for sewing.
3.      Enter the top hole from the outside and leave a 3” tail of thread.
4.      From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, lay the thread over the first tape and enter the hole on the other side of the tape.
5.      From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, lay the thread over the middle tape and enter the hole on the other side of this tape.
6.      From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, lay the thread over the third tape and enter the hole on the other side of this tape.
7.      From the inside of the signature, exit the last hole in the signature.












8.      Align the second signature on top of the first.
9.      Enter the bottom hole of the second signature from the outside.
10.  From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, lay the thread over the third tape, slide your needle under the stitch laying on the tape at the first signature  and enter the hole on the other side of the tape at the second signature.  This will have connected the two stitches over the tape in an X shape.
11.  Repeat this step for the middle tape. From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, lay the thread over the middle tape, slide your needle under the stitch laying on the tape at the first signature  and enter the hole on the other side of the tape at the second signature.  This will have connected the two stitches over the tape in an X shape.
12.  Repeat this step for the top tape.
13.  Exit at the top hole of the second signature and tie a square knot with the 3” tail.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
14.  Align the third signature on top of the second.
15.  Enter the top hole of the third signature from the outside.
16.  From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, slide your needle under the top half of the X (above the point where the threads cross) from the second signature and enter the hole on the other side of the tape.
17.  Repeat this step for the middle tape.
18.  Repeat this step for the third tape.
19.  Exit at the bottom hole of the third signature.
20.  Make a kettle stitch between the second and third signatures at the bottom hole.

a.       A kettle stitch is a half hitch knot.
b.      Use your needle to go under the thread that attaches the first and second signatures together at the bottom hole.
c.       Don’t tighten the thread all the way at this point, but leave a loop.
d.      Cross over the thread and pull the needle through the loop.
e.       Pull the knot firmly and vertically to tighten without ripping your pages.

21.  Align the fourth signature to the third and enter the bottom hole of the fourth signature from the outside.
22.  From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, slide your needle under the bottom half of the X (below the point where the threads cross) from the third signature and enter the hole on the other side of the tape. 
23.  Repeat this step for the middle tape.
24.  Repeat this step for the top tape.
25.  When you exit the top hole of the fourth signature, make a kettle stitch between the third and fourth signatures.
26.  Align the fifth signature and enter the top hole from the outside.
27.  From the inside of the signature, go out the next hole, slide your needle under the top half of the X (above the point where the threads cross) from the fourth signature and enter the hole on the other side of the tape.
28.  Repeat this step for the middle and bottom tapes.
29.  Exit the fifth signature at the bottom hole.
30.  Repeat until you have sewn all your signatures.
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
31.  When you have sewn the last signature, make your final kettle stitch and re-enter the final hole.  Make a square knot in the interior of the signature.  Trim the threads.


Attaching the Cover

Tapes may be attached to the cover by fusing with Wonder-Under, gluing with fabric glue (or another strong glue), or sewing.

1.      Fuse Wonder-Under to the underside of the extended part of the tapes.  Remove paper, align tapes on cover and fuse to cover. Repeat for other cover.
or
2.      Apply glue to the underside of the extended part of the tapes.  Align cover and press down tapes.  Apply weight to the tapes until dry.  Repeat for other cover.
or
3.      Sew tapes by hand or machine to the cover after pinning them in place.  Repeat for the other cover.         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Just a reminder of the things that you'll need for your next book:

  • Prepared covers using your favourite substrate - canvas, flexi-firm or mill board
  • Thread for sewing - perle cotton, waxed linen thread, fine crochet thread, fibres of your choice.
  • Tapes for sewing over - about 3/4 to 1" wide.  The length is your choice - you determine how much you want to show on the front and back covers.  The tape material should be sturdy so feel free to fuse layers together if you are using a soft fabric.  My sample book used pieces of leather 1" wide and 5" long.  I wanted about 2" inches showing on each cover.  Remember:  You can always make it shorter once you've finished sewing the signatures together.
  • At least 5 signatures for sewing -- the more you have the more attractive the stitching looks.
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