Beginners' bookbinding

Course Dates: 13/09/21 - 18/10/21
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Start your bookbinding journey with this accessible, 6 week introduction to techniques and structures. Learn how to make simple folded books progressing to a more complex stitched binding and explore the world of handmade books.
This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
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Full fee £299.00 Senior fee £239.00 Concession £182.00

This course has now finished

Course Code: VD284

Finished Mon, day, 13 Sep - 18 Oct '21

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

You will be introduced to bookbinding through a series of projects designed to provide a good working knowledge of materials and techniques. You will develop skills in both the production and design of hand made books enabling you to go onto more complex and experimental bindings.

What students liked most about this course run in 2015/16:

"We were allowed to mix our own creativity with formalised structures. I printed out some sheets at home and brought them in so I would bind printed pages rather than producing a blank book."


What will we cover?

You will explore bookbinding through a series of interesting structures. We will experiment with paper folding and
simple stitching to create folded books, pamphlet and zig-zag and long stitch bindings. You will also learn how to sew a multi-sectioned binding with hard cover.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Select and use appropriate materials
- Understand the importance of grain direction
- Make a range of non adhesive bindings
- Make a single section binding
- Sew a multi-sectioned binding.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This course is for beginners.
You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions to support demonstrations, hand-outs and for
health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion. You should be able to use
numbers and be able to do simple measurements and calculations.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Through demonstration, practice and discussion you will be taught as a group and individually as required. Handouts will accompany demonstrations. You will be encouraged to investigate the current and historical literature on the subject, and will be informed of publications and events which maybe of interest. The course is structured to manage the work within the class.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Materials needed to complete the projects are included in the cost of the course but you might like to bring your
own decorative papers and or/cloth to complete the work. The bindery is equipped with most hand tools although
you may wish to provide and use your own personal hand tools. A list of equipment and suppliers will be
provided at the first lesson but if you already have all or some of the following bring them with you. - Pencil,
metal ruler, craft knife, bone folder.
Need art supplies? Our partner London Graphic Centre has everything you need from pencils to printing services, at 15% off.
To get an LGC discount card, students will need to show proof/ confirmation of enrolment of them being a student at City Lit. You can apply for our card in-store or by simply emailing with a scan or photo of relevant confirmation. The student discount does not apply to products that are already discounted or on offer. More information can be found here-

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

- VD327 Bookbinding: box making
- VD316 Wooden boarded binding
- VD285 Bookbinding: cross-structure and criss-cross bindings
Book arts
- VD354 Creative arts for bookbinding I: decorative paper techniques
- VD283 Beginner's book arts
- VD290 Bookbinding: paper engineering and pop-ups
- VD292 Bookbinding: Learn to bind artist’s books
- VD262 Ten projects for beginners
- VD290 Paper engineering.
Book repair and conservation
- VD325 Book conservation for beginners II.

Sue Doggett Tutor Website

Sue Doggett is an artist who creates hand-made books and bindings. She gained a first class honours degree in Visual Studies and Art History from Oxford Brookes University in 1985 and an MA in Design from Brighton University in 1998. She received the World Craft Council Award for Contemporary Craft in 1994 and was elected a Fellow of Designer Bookbinders in 1996. She has lectured and led workshops in book arts in the UK, Europe and the USA and is currently teaching on the BA (Hons) Graphic Design course at Camberwell College of Arts and is a bookbinding and book arts tutor at City Lit. As an exhibiting Fellow of Designer Bookbinders, Sue works to public and private commission including the Man Booker Prize for Fiction and she is the current editor of ‘The New Bookbinder’ journal. Her work is represented in public and private collections in Europe and USA and can be seen at the Hyman Kreitman Research Library, Tate Britain; The Folger Library, Washington DC; Yale University Library, The Bodleian Library, Oxford; The Centre for Fine Print Research, Bristol and Manchester Metropolitan Museum.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.