Thursday, December 20, 2007

Bookbinding 101 - Getting Started

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 CBBAG Home-study programme:

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...


~jolene said...

Hi Rhonda,
I've been visiting your blog for a week or so now - I lurk, I read, I gaze, I drool :) I am new at bookbinding and I appreciate the information and inspiration you share so much - thought it was about time I thanked you!

I am in awe of your talent.

ainesse said...


thanks for these tutorials -- I think that I may finally have a go at making a book. The content is not a problem as I have made one off artist's books .....................have a happy christmas

best wishes


Shannon said...

I work for Caring Connections and we are looking for someone to create a mini pink ribbon notebook. Or just pink, for newly diagnosed breast cancer patients. I have been frustrated with the ones that I put in the packages and am looking for something nice. But inexpensive! The money for these is from a Susan G. Komen grant. Please write to Thank you!

Rookie Bebe said...

I just stumbled onto your blog. I LOVE it. In July of '08 I took a basic journal making class at a scrapbooking store. A year and half later, I'm finally organized and have all my supplies in one box and labeled.

So, what I'm saying, is people wanting one on one classes ought to ask around at some of scrapbooking stores.

If you want to let your readers know, Bear Pages in Murphy, NC, has great classes.

Daniela said...

Hi Rhonda

I stumbled across your site while researching marbling for my children's art program. I loved the pictures of your son doing the marbling! It has really encouraged me to introduce this art form to my class. My boys have been coming to my studio since they were babies and working beside a Crayola artist is something I can totally relate to!

Good for you and him!