Loads of photos this morning and probably another blog post later today. This isn't my normal working pace, just so you know, but I'm rather enjoying being intensely involved with a project like this.
Hinges and the headcap area pared. I use a glass plate instead of a paring stone, works better for me. This of course is just a personal preference, some say glass isn't good for your knives, but I've never had issues with mine. Maybe it's because I'm obsessively sharpening them anyway.
Gluing on the onlays. Meticulous work, but that's just the way I like it. Most my designs aren't all symmetric, there's usually always at least a bit of randomness there somewhere. But I'm the kind of person who needs to plan ahead all randomness, my just winging it will lead to a disaster without exceptions. Everything goes out of balance if I don't stick to my plans. Call me neurotic.
The only moment the sun has come out today was when I snapped this photo. I guess finishing the onlays was an accomplishment worth a ray of sun or two. I actually finished the back-paring and removed the paper from my onlays late late last night and had to snap a couple of bad photos and email them around and go all squee on my own. The onlays need a little more cleaning up to remove all remains of paste and paper, but I'll get to that after the leather is actually on the book.
I like how the handcut letters turn into a handwriting when I stick them together. I could've done the title using brass type, either in simple blind tooling or gilt, but that type of titles have kind of lost their charm to me. I like the organic and slightly weird appearance of my tiny little leather letters. The title is made, not just printed. To me it makes a difference.
Now the most boring part of this morning post. Just finishing the covers before I stick on the leather. Sanding, once again. Luckily at this point things are smooth enough to not require too much of yucky dusty sanding.
And the leather is on. In the press as I write. Now a little food for this bookbinder and I'll get back to the book and do the turn-ins. Some binders do the entire covering process at one go, but I prefer to split it in two parts. There's just too much adrenaline going on if I need to do everything at once. I like to have time when I'm doing the headcaps and corners, but this again is one of those things everyone does in their own way. To this date it still surprises how strongly many bookbinders feel about their technique. I don't believe there's a right way of doing anything, just many ways that will lead to a good result as long as the bookbinder knows what they're doing. (Wrong ways, there has to be loads of those, but as long as the book looks good and functions like it's supposed to, I'm fine with the way it was made.) I make my books the way I was taught, and the way I taught myself whenever I felt there was something wrong with the way I was told to do things. A random mix of techniques from many, many teachers and a little something from me.