I have just finished a book for my Etsy shop, which is designed to be a guest book or photo album for a special event – like and Engagement Party or Wedding Reception. This is how it was made:
I cut boards to size for the covers (8”x6” approx) and covered them with a lovely paper I found with birds and flowers, then lined them with a peach coloured art paper.
I cut 40 pages (they are A5 – 8”x5.75” approx, landscape format) and ten peach coloured section wrappers. I made a template for the holes, which I pierced for sewing the book together.
The pages grouped in sets – four pages per section – with a spacer / wrapper round each section. The wrappers serve two purposes – they look decorative and they also act as spacers, making the book deeper at the spine, so it will hold photos, cards, tags etc. without the book bulging out of shape (of course it relies on the owner not to stuff it too full!).
Then I stacked the sections ready for binding and put them under a weight overnight.
Making holes in the boards, ready for sewing. I decided to have a 9-thread pattern on this book, which is sewn with a Coptic style binding.
The book is ready for sewing; I stitched the centre of each set of 3 holes with a v.dark blue thread. The second picture shows the finished dark blue coptic stitch, with the cover boards sewn onto the book.
The boards are attached by stitching through the holes, then sewing to the first section of pages.
The second picture shows the beeswax I use for waxing my thread; I sewed this book with 100% linen thread in two colours – dark blue and ivory. The wax gives the thread more strength and durability; it also makes it easier to sew with, as it’s slightly slippy.
Sewing the Coptic stitch binding in ivory linen and a top view of the finished binding.
The completed Coptic Stitch binding, in dark blue and ivory. You can see the stitch pattern on the inside of the cover.
The book opens flat; the section wrappers act as spacers and make the book fatter at the spine than at the front edge.
The book is pretty well finished, though I may need to tidy up the edges or some of the section wrappers, as they are a bit scruffy on one or two sections.
When I get some decent daylight (tomorrow pm I hope!!), I will photograph the book properly and then add it to my shop. Hopefully someone will like it and buy it for their wedding/ engagement/ anniversary party or other special day. I really enjoy knowing that one of my books will be special to someone else and hold memories of a special occasion.