I seem to get a lot of inquiries from people who are interested in learning how to do some bookbinding. It would be nice if I could just send these people to a single magic website for some good introductory bookbinding lessons; however, that website doesn't exist yet. There are some amazing resources online for bookbinders and lots of tutorials, but I have found nothing that is as organized and dedicated to teaching basic bookbinding as a face-to-face class or a good solid analog book! For people who have never made books before, I would suggest buying either Cover to Cover by Shereen LaPlantz or Creating Handmade Books by Alisa Golden - these two books cover many of the same techniques so you would not need to have both (ok, so you can't afford to buy a book, well, you can probably get one of these or some other similar book from your local library). The Japanese Bookbinding book by Ikegami is another great book to start with.
Aside from having a good book, I think the best way to learn bookbinding is with an instructor so if you can find an introductory bookbinding class you should get in there! Being able to ask questions is important and it is the best way to get your hands on the tools and materials so that you know what you really need to get started. But if you are trying to jump into this without books or instruction, here are some online resources that may be useful:
The Book Arts Forum is a great resource where you can ask questions and get eager answers from some very experienced binders:
The CBBAG Home-study programme:
An extensive list of online resources from ALA:
A big list of bookbinding tutorials:
For people who have never made a book and want to try some online tutorials, I would recommend starting with pamphlet bindings and Asian stab bindings...for example...
- The 3-hole pamphlet binding tutorial
- A chopstick pamphlet tutorial
- Chinese 5-hole binding tutorial
- A simple hardcover book tutorial