I really like the sewn boards binding technique that I tried out a while ago. My models and first tries with the technique were made with book cloth and paper, but my true love is linen fabric. I knew I could use linen on sewn boards bindings with a bit of adaptation, and I also wanted to do a distressed linen spine - you remember the type I've done on my Coptic bound books before. This week I finally got round to trying it out, and I'm super happy with the results. V, my darling spouse, also thinks these sewn boards books are awesome, and that's quite something as he's usually the kind of guy who says just "nice" about all my books.
16x22,4x1,7cm / 6.3"x8.8"x0.7" - 72 pages of 150 gsm drawing paper
The sewn boards binding has covers that are literally sewn in place at the same time with the pages. The covers are made up of many layers of fairly thin cardstock, and those layers are only partially glued together. The end result is a soft, flexible cover that isn't flimsy or bulky. The layers inside the covers have a bit of a movement and the hand feel of the book is actually somewhat unexpected. Very much a tactile experience, especially with the linen fabric covers!
This binding differs from the basic case binding also in that sense that the covers are cut flush with the pages. Usually hardcover books have covers that are slightly larger than the book block. The purpose of this is to protect the edges of the pages, but at the same time it can actually add stress to the book spine. With smaller books that isn't really a problem, but it's still worth pointing out. I personally don't think that extra protection is an absolute necessity on notebooks - it's more of a visual thing to me. These sewn boards books with flush cut covers offer a nice change from the traditional book look.
14,5x13,7x1,4cm / 5.7"x5.4"0.6" - 96 pages of 90gsm drawing paper
In addition to the large gold spine book I made these two smaller books with duo-tone covers. The spines on these are made of fancy artisanal cotton (oh I don't really know what that even means, I just fell in love with the colours and textures!), and in both books the covers are made with grey linen (different grey and different texture in each). I really wanted to make a book with grey and ochre after seeing this photo on Instagram, but ochre seems to be that endlessly elusive colour! For years I've tried to find that perfect ochre or mustard linen. I've had some good candidates, but the perfect one is yet to be found. So, instead of the ochre/gray combo I yearned for, I paired the two greys with sepia and peach, which are also colour combinations I like.
I could have introduced a third colour in the inner spine and cover lining, but I like to stick to the more minimalistic designs for my books. Besides, I already picked a third colour for the endpapers, and three is my absolute maximum number of colours per book!
I'm so pleased with the feel of these books that I can already promise the sewn boards binding will become one of my go-to structures in the future. Before I get round to making more of these, I should first finish yet another stack of long stitch kraft bullet journals and their accompanying drawstring bags. My quilting projects have been put on the back burner for a while, but I promise there'll be a quilt update before the summer is over! I'm currently working on three quilts and two of them have actual due dates, so I expect to keep making some progress even while continuing binding books and putting together mixes media pieces.
Now, some completely unrelated big stuff to end this post: I hit 800 sales on Etsy this week! This milestone totally sneaked up on me. A very happy Paperiaarre Kaija here! Thanks once again for all the love and support!