Thursday, March 16, 2006

BOOKBINDING & Prepare for Leather Binding

The boards are cut to size, marked out and holes punched in place, the hemp cords are laced through and splayed out flat.
The calf skin is then chosen and inspected for flaws such as scratches, holes and briar scars, having chosen the best part of the skin this is then cut to size allowing for turn-in and shrinkage when dampened, and pared on all edges.
The book is then covered and the edges coloured before turning in.

The colours are fermented vegetable dyes with an added mordant which makes them "light fast" so they do not fade.
The spine is coloured first and the covers are marked out and three colours applied.
The dyes used for this binding are horse chestnuts, cochineale, cherry, and crushed green walnut shells.

A tallow is prepared of bulls fat and candlewax, this is allowed to set, prepared and applied. Not only will the tallow help seal the leather but it will aid in the cooling of the hot tools, reduce scorching of the surface of the leather and give a rich burnished look to the finish of the tooling.