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Welcome to my Bookbinding Blog

The making of books, the teaching of bookbinding and the association with other bookbinders and book artists has become the focus and passion of my life. Bookbinding has many aspects and we debate a lot about the precise definitions of various aspects but, working with our hands within this discipline, challenging our skills and creativity is intriguing, frustrating and exciting.
Sydney Bookbinding
Sydney Bookbinding

New Oriental papers for endpapers and decorative effects

Grey and olive patterned oriental paper

Just arrived are 4 new Oriental papers that I think are very suitable as endpapers and,or decorative areas of books.

The beautiful swirly patterned papers are Suminagashi dying onto strong oriental paper. The first is a gold and black design on red and the second is a more muted olive in tone -  gold and black on cream pattern. They need to be laminated onto another endpaper sheet as the backs are not very attractive.

The other two sheets are Chiyogami papers showing a very tiny repeated floral design in red on white and the second sheet, black on white. They are quite clean on the reverse side so perhaps no need to laminate these.

The code, sizes  and prices for these papers are -

SGBR – (Suminagashi red/gold) 50x75cm-  $9.00 each.

SGBC - (Suminagashi black/gold) 50x75cm $9.00 each

Chiyogami  – 49x64cm -

CHBKF – black floral on white – $12.00

CHRF – red floral on white – $12.00

Hope you like them.


Posted in Bookbinding Supplies |
Sydney Bookbinding

Coloured and patterned bookcloth

Calabria White Lace - Calabria White

These images are of the more decorative cloths. Firstly the Suedex Prestige. This is a delicious suede cloth that I have used on a book cover as well as lining boxes.

Then the Duo Bookcloth which has a two toned look with one colour thread one way and another one the other way in the weave. It has a very linen like surface.

Finally the Calabria. Here we see a raised lace like pattern in white or black. The black is more of a dark pewter colour than a very dark, inky black.

Note: we supply in 1/2 meter lengths for postage purposes. If you need in a full meter then I hope you can pick up. We may be able to courier to Sydney areas and Canberra (can always check) the longer length but postage is only in 1/2 meters. The width varies a bit and this is detailed in our price list – SOON TO BE AVAILABLE VIA EMAIL REQUEST.

Posted in Bookbinding Supplies |
Sydney Bookbinding

COFA First project. Basic pattern for Oriental side stitching

Low res Oriental side stiching first pattern
Pattern for stitching

Basic pattern for stitching


Here is the basic pattern for side stitching for your Oriental Side Stitched book.

The first image shown the stitching process which we demonstrate to you in class. The end unit at the tail are completed before the thread is taken to the next sewing point – eg from E to D. Then you progress going around the spine and up to the next sewing point – C. Continue until you reach the top or head for your book then complete that corner pattern.

Final step (second image) is to simply go down the spine, not around the spine, filling in the gaps until you reach E. We will demonstrate how you tie off easily and thread the ends through to the inside of your back cover.

Note we start at the back as this puts the bulk of the tie-off and thread ends at the back thus keeping the front looking smooth.


Posted in Artists' Books |
Sydney Bookbinding

Oriental side stitched Artists’ Book


COFA students. If you require a PDF of my special price list for you or the course notes please email me with this request. rosemarie@sydneybookbinding.com

For several years I have taking a course on Artists’ Books at COFA (College of Fine Arts, Sydney). During the semester we  complete 3 projects.

Oriental side stitched book with painted covers

Their first project is to design and create a book based on Oriental side stitching. A soft cover and with content of their designing. It gives me great pleasure to see the creativity of these talented students.

This book shows quite intricate side stitching and opens in the centre - “French Door” style.

Open Oriental side stitched book showing internal pages


This shows the opening of the book and some of the work done on the internal pages. Not only are there collages and pages that are painted but different coloured pages and stencil cutting has been used to create interest. It opens very gracefully.

This is another very interesting side stitched book, that grew from the exploration of Oriental side stitching. The cut holes in the front look through to different pages on the inside where drawings of different colours are to be seen.

The exploration of a wider spine area and multi-coloured stitching is a very creative  development.

The ‘gallery’ images at the start of this post give just some ideas of the range of styles explored by the COFA students. There are many more of course but this is a taste. So, be creative with this one.


Posted in Artists' Books |
Sydney Bookbinding

Bookcloth images – Chelsea Cloth & Arbelave Library Buckram

abwhi2 - White

In the absence of a website I am using my blog for information regarding the materials I offer for sale both here at the bindery and via mail-order.

I will have a price list as a PDF very soon so you can email me and request it to be sent.

Email me if you have any questions – rosemarie@sydneybookbinding.com

For mail order you simply place your order by email, clearly state your postal address and I can let you know what the final cost will be. You will need to pay by EFT (preferred) or send a cheque. Cash of course at the bindery.

Firstly I am listing the bookcloths as here a choice of colour is important.

Here are sample of the Chelsea Cloth & Arbelave Library Buckram. If you click on the image it will give the code underneath. If the code is ending in a 2 this means half metre. Without the 2 means a full metre. We sell in half meters, full metres or a combination of both eg. 1 and 1/2 metres.

The Chelsea Cloth is thinner than the Arbelave and has a linen look surface. It is suitable for the full range of binding work.

Arbelave Library Buckram is a particularly robust cloth and, I like if for students, as you can simply wipe off any PVA that gets on it. It allows any finger marks to be cleaned off a finished book.

More coming very soon


Posted in Bookbinding Supplies |
Sydney Bookbinding