15 January 2011

Bitten by the Bookbinding Bug

I signed up for a class in Japanese bookbinding last October, as some of you may remember. I really liked the idea of making my own sketchbooks, and have since become increasingly aware of the fact that a lot of artists enjoy making their own sketchbooks, or journals, for a number of reasons – aesthetic as well as practical. As a result, there have been a few additions related to simple bookbinding to my library. (I’m beginning to worry that one night I’ll wake up to a tremendous crash, as my flimsy bookcase finally surrenders to the weight of my collected wisdom. That doesn’t stop me from buying more books, though.)

As a warm-up exercise before the Real Thing, I decided to try making the little pamphlets that Gwen Diehn describes in her book The Decorated Journal. I started with the Three-Minute Pamphlet, and then moved on to the Six-Minute Double Pamphlet, in two different styles: the Pleat Book and the Dos à Dos. I used 120 g/m2 drawing paper, and my plan is to slip a pamphlet into a pocket in my personal organiser, to have it near at any time I’m stuck somewhere and feel the urge to doodle. I probably crammed too much paper into the pamphlets, as they all sprawl open, but never mind. A rubber band will fix that.

Next time I’ll go for the Thirty-Minute Multiple-Pamphlet Journal. That sounds very impressive. Stay tuned.

Biten av bokbindningsflugan

Kommer ni ihåg att jag var på japansk bokbindning i höstas? Jag gillade det där med att binda mina egna böcker och planerar nu att binda en egen skissbok så småningom. Men innan jag tar mig an ett så avancerat projekt har jag övat mig lite med enklare modeller. De här små häftena är beskrivna i Gwen Diehns bok The Decorated Journal. Jag tänker stoppa in ett litet häfte i min almanacka, så har jag det nära till hands när jag fastnar någonstans och vill fördriva tiden med lite skissande. Håll utkik efter nästa övningsprojekt, som kommer att börja likna en riktig bok!

 The Three-Minute Pamphlet

 The Six-Minute Double Pamphlet (Pleat Book)

 The Six-Minute Double Pamphlet (Dos à Dos)


  1. Gwen Diehn is a delight. She sometimes comes and visits with my Journal Study Group (JSG). Have you seen that she has started a blog? I am going to make the butterbox book soon. http://real-life-journals.blogspot.com/

  2. Thanks for the tip! Yeah, I love both her books. I just need to work a little harder to actually do things and not just think and read about them. Like you said on your blog, doing is much better than thinking, and in my case it teaches me so much more than reading about it. I really need to figure out how to work regular journaling into my schedule!

  3. keep the book open while you are on the phone, take yourself out for coffee, tea, tape tid bits in, find stuff on the streets.