Some years back, I wrote books for my granddaughters, stories in which they were the main characters (well, they and their cats!) I had great fun doing it, and I wanted to put them in a format that could last over time. At that point, however, getting a handful of copies of hardback books would have cost the earth. And anyway, as you might have noticed from all the crafts I like to try, I’m a hands-on kind of girl.
So I decided to learn bookbinding. There were no classes available and YouTube videos weren’t a thing. Online tutorials…nope. But I searched around until I found a couple of old pamphlets and books that detailed various methods handed down for generations.
My beloved built me a book press, and I found a source for the board, fabric, glues and other tools (the bone folder has been worth its weight in gold, even in quilting!) I leaped in as if I had good sense and learned on the job.
It’s entirely possible that these are the most expensive children’s books ever to exist, if you count the time involved, but who counts the cost when it’s a labor of love? I adored learning it, pulled-out hair and all, and I’d do it all again a thousand times over for the look of wonder on those little girls’ faces when they, who adored books from birth, thanks to their mom, opened up these and saw their own faces and names inside!
Here are some pictures of the process, kitchen-counter style. (Don’t you love the vinyl tablecloth that has seen finger-paints, play dough and every other messy thing?)