Sshhh, sleeping treasures – creative enclosures

I am occasionally asked to use my skills to protect treasures other than books.  This last week I have completed a job to line a small cabinet ready for a precious shell and mineral collection. Shell, as I have learned and researched some more recently, does not like timber, so the timber of the cabinet … Continue reading Sshhh, sleeping treasures – creative enclosures


Let’s talk needles.

Needles. Most folks start out in binding just using whatever is handy - I did. Cheaper the better, whatever the weather, whatever the project - not a priority. A retired binder mentioned early on that a lack of attention to my needles would change the way I work and develop poor habits and unflattering books … Continue reading Let’s talk needles.


Many of the notebooks, recipebooks, fieldbooks, diaries, weather journals, flight logs, memoirs, scrapbooks, sketchbooks and albums I repair were never intended by the author to last beyond their lifetime. Perhaps the expense folks outlay to repair, conserve and protect them might even horrify the owner that their mess, musings and written debris are attracting so … Continue reading NOTES THAT LAST

Choosing a book to rebind

I am often asked to rebind favourite stories into volumes worthy of inheritance. Perhaps as a birth gift, a wedding gift, or any number of other wonderfully creative motivations. It is a part of my job that I particularly love, as it is about preparing for the future and showing your family how much stories … Continue reading Choosing a book to rebind

**It feels like Christmas today**

My paper order from Griffen Mill in Ireland has arrived, and I am so happy, as it means I can complete some repairs works that have been waiting a looooooong time for the right paper match, and my confidence to increase in learning about period paper matching, choosing it from afar.    There is no better … Continue reading **It feels like Christmas today**


As co-incidence would have it, I have heard or read four people this week remark that they are too scared to draw or write in their new leather journal. So, I thought it timely to add a few thoughts..A blank journal is the only waste.Until you write upon it, in your own hand,it is not … Continue reading "HELP – MY NEW LEATHER JOURNAL IS TOO NICE TO WRITE IN"

ROUNDING & BACKING ~ a post especially for Beth

Why are the spines of many older and hand bound books rounded?  How is it done?I'll briefly explain Rounding, and Backing and why it's done, then link here some videos of binders I admire who can show you the various processes in action.(no point reinventing the wheel - these binders really know their stuff)Why round?If you look … Continue reading ROUNDING & BACKING ~ a post especially for Beth


Students and bookbinding beginners often ask the question about their"Why is my paper buckling like ribbon?""Why won't my sewn books open properly?""Why don't the pages turn nicely?""Why does the paper crack and warp when I fold it?""Why do my prints constantly jam the machine?"The likely culprit is the grain of your paper running in the wrong … Continue reading PAPER GRAIN FRIDAY ~ TOP TIP FOR BEGINNER BOOKBINDERS