Bookbinding

Our courses cover:

  • Bookbinding - develop and build skills in contemporary and traditional bookbinding, gold tooling, decorative techniques and specialised projects.
  • Book conservation - practical courses on paper repair, leather and cloth conservation, hand tooling and machine blocking.
  • Book arts - explore both classic and innovative techniques and structures to produce unique pieces in our book art courses.
Our courses take place during the evenings, daytimes and weekends and are offered from beginner to advanced level, some also include talks by contemporary practitioners.

Bookbinding tutor Susan Doggett's exhibition, showcasing her prize winning piece 'The 2018 Almanac for the Modern Medievalist', is on display at the Bodleian Library in Oxford until April 2018.

Any questions? Contact our visual arts team on 020 7492 2700 Monday - Friday between 10am - 5pm.

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  1. Bookbinding: long stitch, coptic and secret Belgian bindings

    Bookbinding: long stitch, coptic and secret Belgian bindings

    Course Date: Mon 17 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Immerse yourself in ancient, medieval and contemporary sewing techniques to create attractive multi-section books using leather and decorated papers. These flexible books require little or no glue and the pages open completely flat.
    Full fee: £199.00
    Senior fee: £159.00
    Concession: £121.00

  2. Sew your own sketchbook

    Sew your own sketchbook

    Course Date: Mon 17 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Make a personalised, hard cover sketchbook to enhance your creative work. Experiment with papers, pockets and inserts and learn how to customise your own covering materials. Suitable for beginners.
    Full fee: £179.00
    Senior fee: £179.00
    Concession: £109.00

  3. City Lit fine binding: advanced

    City Lit fine binding: advanced

    Course Date: Tue 18 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    A unique, advanced level course enabling you to make a full leather binding with a strong creative element. Learn specialist techniques such as: leather-jointed endpapers, guarding, edge gilding/decoration, tool sharpening, hand paring, covering, inlays/onlays and doublures. Not suitable for beginners. Applications for this course will be reviewed on the 5th of June and interviews will take place on the 12th of June. There will be a second interview date in August and we will continue to accept applications until then.
    Full fee: £1,149.00
    Senior fee: £919.00
    Concession: £701.00

  4. Book conservation and repair: paper and cloth-bound books

    Course Date: Wed 19 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Look at the cleaning, repair and conservation of paper, both as flat documents and in book format, and the repair and conservation of paper and cloth-bound books. For those with some bookbinding experience.
    Full fee: £469.00
    Senior fee: £375.00
    Concession: £286.00

  5. Papercutting, collage and design

    Papercutting, collage and design

    Course Date: Thu 20 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Learn how papercutting techniques can translate visual ideas into unique artwork. Explore scale, pattern, positive-negative and layers through collage and intercutting. You will practise skills useful in book arts, fabric design and illustration.
    Full fee: £189.00
    Senior fee: £151.00
    Concession: £115.00

  6. Book conservation for beginners: 1

    Book conservation for beginners: 1

    Course Date: Thu 20 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Understand the structure, collating and pulling of a book. Practise paper cleaning and repair. Learn how to re-sew a text-block, mend damaged corners and re-hinge boards.
    Full fee: £349.00
    Senior fee: £349.00
    Concession: £213.00

  7. Design and bind it: bookbinding techniques for graphic artists I

    Course Date: Fri 21 Sep 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Interested in how to make dynamic book structures? Then this is the course for you. This is an opportunity to create a series of books based on individual key graphic design elements - line, colour, shape, image and type.
    Full fee: £289.00
    Senior fee: £231.00
    Concession: £176.00

  8. Taster day in bookbinding

    Taster day in bookbinding

    Course Date: Sun 23 Sep 2018 (and 3 other dates)
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Dip your fingers into bookbinding. Learn a little about the history, materials and craft of bookbinding while making a simple binding to take home. A chance to discuss further study in bookbinding at City Lit.
    Full fee: £69.00
    Senior fee: £69.00
    Concession: £69.00

  9. Book conservation and repair workshop: intermediate and advanced

    Book conservation and repair workshop: intermediate and advanced

    Course Date: Wed 26 Sep 2018 (and 2 other dates)
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Ideal if you have some bookbinding conservation experience and want to develop your skills further by working on your own projects with advice and guidance. Each term will include demonstrations that focus on a different aspect of book conservation.
    Full fee: £339.00
    Senior fee: £339.00
    Concession: £207.00

  10. City Lit bookbinding course

    City Lit bookbinding course

    Course Date: Tue 2 Oct 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Step into bookbinding with this three-term course. Learn essential techniques and develop skills in using tools and materials to produce your own work. A stimulating, challenging and comprehensive introduction for beginners. Applications for this course will be reviewed on Tues 12th June and interviews will be held on Tuesday the 19th of June and 19th of July 2018.
    Full fee: £1,099.00
    Senior fee: £1,099.00
    Concession: £670.00

  11. Knife sharpening workshop

    Course Date: Sun 7 Oct 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Sharpening bookbinding knives is an acquired skill. Learn the basics as well as exploring different types of sharpening stones, the importance of the bevel, edge paring, strops, spoke-shaves, how to sharpen and more.
    Full fee: £69.00
    Senior fee: £69.00
    Concession: £69.00

  12. City Lit bookbinding: intermediate

    City Lit bookbinding: intermediate

    Course Date: Mon 8 Oct 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    An intermediate-level course for students with some experience. Learn new skills and techniques. Develop and build on existing knowledge in traditional and contemporary bookbinding, including leather paring and fine binding.
    Full fee: £569.00
    Senior fee: £569.00
    Concession: £347.00

  13. Bookbinding: starter projects

    Bookbinding: starter projects

    Course Date: Mon 15 Oct 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Start your bookbinding journey with this accessible, 8 week introduction to techniques and structures. Learn how to

    make simple folded books through to a more complex stitched binding with slip-case. Suitable for beginners.
    Full fee: £299.00
    Senior fee: £239.00
    Concession: £182.00

  14. Hand marbled paper

    Course Date: Fri 2 Nov 2018 (and 1 other date)
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Get your hands messy investigating the history and techniques of decorative paper marbling from Suminagashi and Ebru to traditional Western marbling on carrageen moss size. Try out re-creating some historical patterns. Suitable for all levels.
    Full fee: £199.00
    Senior fee: £159.00
    Concession: £121.00

  15. Bookbinding for beginners: simple leather binding

    Course Date: Thu 22 Nov 2018
    Location on this date: KS - Keeley Street
    Discover how leather, combined with simple sewing and cutting techniques can create a wonderfully flexible and stylish binding. Create books with folded and crossed structure covers, and include tabs and decorative linings to personalise your work.
    Full fee: £179.00
    Senior fee: £143.00
    Concession: £109.00

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