OpenClose – Book Binding

When doing my research for different types of bookbinding I first went to the library where I found a book on lots of different handmade books. I took pictures of the ones I felt most inspired by. Aleta by Julie Johnson had a really interesting construction almost cutting the book into two. This would be a really creative way of dividing the chapter in my book. My outcome needs to have a visible divide between the chapters and this would be such a unique way to do it. It would also add something extra to an otherwise normal book. Perhaps with my own I can divide the chapter even more by having contrasting paper, black and white could show the progression of evil though the book. Having the red accent could then follow thought, keeping the design visually linked. Another design aspect I enjoyed was the binding from E. Bond’s book, Fault Lines. The centipede like stitching attaching the signatures together looks very earthy and give some texture which I love. Also having the spine exposed makes it look naked and handmade, this is something I wish to have as I want to link in the journal aspect thought the exterior. Lastly the two shaped books stood out to me, having a shaped book is great for narrative. It can quickly allows the reader to know the tone without even reading anything. I think it is a clever storytelling technique to use but I think it can come across child like. In book shops I have seen so many different shaped books for children so I have that connotation with them. The books above looks creepy and unusual which I love but it’s not the style I’m going for.

After seeing the unique binding in E. Bond’s book I wanted to do some research into Japanese binding which I had heard of previously. ‘Japan was one of the first places to begin creating bound books. By the 14th century, the most popular style of Japanese bookbinding became the fukuro tori (pouch binding), which is the style most people think of when they think of Japanese bookbinding.’ Pocket books were bound together with thread or tightly wrapped strings of paper and then a front and back cover was applied. It was a great way of creating book for the ever-growing world as ‘the pages could be sewn according to any number of traditional and fashionable methods.’ From then decorative styles of binding were developed which can give each book its own style. What I love about this method is the versatility of designs you can come up with, as long as you have the basics down the look is up to you. I want to take this historical techniques and adapt it into the Dracula story. Creating my own pattern that reflects the story could add something unique to my outcome. I love the thought of having blood-red stitching against the white paper, symbolising his attack on Mina. This would call for some practice but I’m excited to learn a new skill for this project.


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