In addition to conserving books, we also offer a bookbinding service; creating new bindings for both completely new books, and those with old bindings beyond repair. Bindings are hand-made to order, and particular care is taken to accurately replicate historic structures and styles. Below are a few examples of past bookbinding projects; if you would like to commission a binding, please contact us to discuss options.
For inspiration, see our gallery for more bookbinding projects.
A late 15th century English Gothic binding:
A late 15th century English Gothic binding with blind-tooled, recessed tawed spine covering over quarter-sawn oak boards. The finishing tools were produced especially for this project and Arthur made the fore-edge clasps from scratch.
This particular binding was the focus of a workshop given in 2018 for Designer Bookbinders and The Society of Bookbinders. For further details, see our blog by Book Conservator, Talitha Wachtelborn.
A rebind of a late 17th century book on witches that came to us in a rather brutal 20th century library-style binding. The old binding was carefully removed, and the text-block repaired and re-sewn on raised cords – leaving the original sewing intact. It was then rebound in-boards with new plain linen endbands and covered tight-back in sprinkled hand-dyed calf. The board edges were gilt and the blind tooling is restrained, but gives a suggestion of the period.
The Antient and Modern History of The Famous City of York;… / Thomas Gent (York, 1730). This octavo arrived in the studio in a broken 20th century case-binding; so on this occasion was rebound in-boards with a tight-back, and covered in calf decorated with an 18th century style Cambridge panel.
For more images, see our Gallery.
This two volume set was fully rebound in a late 18th century style. It was re-sewn by hand on four raised cords, with sprinkled edges and hand-worked linen endbands. It was then covered in hand-dyed calf with red goat leather spine-labels and tooling in real gold.
These two books are bound as springbacks – a style of stationery binding common in the 19th century. They are robust and open completely flat, so well suited for visitors books. For more information on springback bindings see Arthur’s 2011 article.
This new binding is next in a series of College Registers dating back to 1764. As requested, the register was hand-bound in a modern style; covered in fine goat leather and finished with the College crest in yellow leather on-lays. For more details, see University College, Oxford.