Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Unfinished Project #4 (Marbled Fore-edges)


There are always a few unfinished projects on the shelf. Usually, these unfinished projects are personal projects which get shelved when custom orders and other paid projects come along. I do, though, try to go back to the shelf of unfinished projects periodically, and finish things.

This particular project was started in May 2011. At that time, I was taking a class at PBI and for the work we were doing in that class, we had a bookbinding plough at our disposal. I don't have a plough at home, so I decided to take advantage of this temporary access. A plough is used to trim the edges of a text block, to create very smooth even edges. It is necessary for certain bindings and it is necessary for fore-edge decoration. I decided to create a couple of textblocks and plough the edges so that I could bring them home and marble them.


These two ploughed textblocks sat on the shelf of unfinished projects for almost two years, until February 2013. At that time, I blew off the dust, and finally marbled the edges of those two text blocks. I had never done fore-edge marbling before, but it worked pretty well. Once I had a marble pattern that I liked, I dipped the textblock and made a matching sheet of paper to be used later on the covers.


I quickly moved the dipped textblock into a press.


I did that with both textblocks and left them in the press until they were dry. Then the textblocks went back onto the shelf. Fast-forward to February 2014, and I finally found the time to turn the text blocks into books, with their matching marbled paper covers.


Now, another month later, I finally photographed the finished books and shared the whole story here. A very satisfying finished project, for sure, even if it did take me three years.


6 comments:

PrairiePeasant said...

Very beautiful Rhonda! I have a stack of unfinished projects too--it's a good feeling when something gets completed from there.

MiataGrrl said...

I had always wondered how marbled book edges were done... thanks for the excellent photos. The finished books are lovely!

- Tina

Rhonda Miller said...

thanks Laura and Tina!

whynoteight said...

Absolutely beautiful! I like how you marbled the covers the same way as the foredges.

Rhonda Miller said...

thanks :)

Paul Thomson said...

Great tutorial Rhonda, Thanks for taking the time to write it - I'm sure many will benefit from your shared knowledge! FYI, I used it as a reference on a recent paper marbling tutorial I did myself a week or two ago, I hope you don't mind...? http://www.ibookbinding.com/blog/marbled-paper-bookbinding-tutorial-and-photo-gallery/

Keep up the good work and again, many thanks!
~ Paul