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Archive for September 2011

I attended two workshops this last week (Sept. 15 ~ 17). One was for a couple of hours on two consecutive days and one was for a couple of hours on alternate days. I found I could fit both into my schedule and rushed off to Tokyo.

Yamazaki Yo's workshop - (one of his books on bookbinding) Thursday-Friday, one casebound book.

yamazaki_01.jpgI practiced making a 172-page casebound book (the novel This Is Life by Seth Harwood; Episode 49.) On day one, I used the link-stitch to sew it up, glued the spine, added endpapers, headbands, and that extra piece of paper on the spine, and mull. Yamazaki Yo, the teacher, showed me a simple and convenient way to measure things:

• Use a strip of paper rather than a ruler.

And to add endpapers, he uses an endpaper that is too large and then cuts the excess away rather than measure exactly and hope it is glued on straight. This made for quick and stress-free endpaper adding.

I also learned how to say "mull" in Japanese: 寒冷紗 (kan-rei-sha.) Literally, 'cold-cold-gauze'. As an extra attraction, I taught the teacher (Yo Yamazaki) how to say 寒冷紗 in English. We also traded vocabulary for "clamshell box" which, in Japanese, is 夫婦箱 (me-oto-bako). Literally, 'Husband (夫) - wife (婦) box (箱)'

On day two, I made the cover using templates rather than measure everything. For the 7 mm space between the cover and the spine, I slipped in a 7-mm wide piece of wood (called a 'template' by some). For the 15 mm extra book cloth around the edges of the book board, Yamazaki-sensei had a 15-mm strip of wood. Quick, easy, and consistent. Very nice.

Marumizu Gumi workshop - Thursday-Saturday, one casebound book & book cloth.

Sensei.jpgI took this workshop once before and you can see more on Episode 34. On Thursday night we made bookcloth out of a used t-shirt and other cloth I wanted to use.

Backing paper was thoroughly moistened, the cloth was made wet; glue was added to the backing paper and then attached to the back of the cloth. The edge of the cloth was glued down and viola, finished. Except for waiting at least 24-hours to dry. I made four bookcloths and used one in the next class.

On Saturday morning, I made a casebound book which I had previously link-stitched together (after Yamazaki-sensei's workshop). Inoue-sensei, the teacher, showed me a different way to add the strip on the spine by folding a thin piece of paper in thirds. Very nice, too. She also showed me how to make the spine flat so that it fit better into the cover - by using a bonefolder.

The benefit of workshops (at least for me at least this time) was connecting with other bookbinders, renewing my enthusiasm for bookbinding, and learning tricks that make the whole process faster, more accurate (templates) and cheaper (making my own bookcloth).

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