Wooden boarded binding

Course Dates: 21/07/20 - 11/08/20
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street

The earliest books were sewn on to wooden boards. On this short course you will learn about early book structures and create a Coptic binding using some historical techniques and materials.


What is the course about?

You will make an historically detailed example of a Coptic binding with wooden boards.

What will we cover?

- The history and importance of Ethiopic bookbinding
- The preparation of the wooden boards and their attachment to the quires (sections)
- Sewing together the paper quires with link stitch
- Ethiopic and/or Byzantine headbands
- Braiding leather straps.

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

- Fold paper into quires
- Mark up quires and sew with link stitch
- Drill the wooden boards and prepare them for attachment
- Sew an Ethiopic and/or Byzantine headband
- Make a braided leather strap
Note: if time allows we will also make a second book in a slightly different style.

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

The course is beginners to intermediate level and requires a basic ability to use hand tools confidently.

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

You will be taught by practical demonstrations, supported by individual tuition and handouts.

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

There will be an extra cost for materials - wooden boards, linen thread, leather. Probably between £15 - £20.
Tools will be provided but it would be useful to bring along a small hand drill or Dremel, a small carpenters square, and a notebook and pencil.

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

Bookbinding: general
- VD435 Bookbinding for beginners: simple leather binding
- VD410 Beginning miniature binding
- VD285 Crossed-structure and criss-cross bindings
Bookbinding: specialist courses
- VD412 Gold tooling on paper
- VD251 Working with leather: decorative techniques
- VD361 Creative arts for bookbinding II: leather dyeing techniques
- VD276 Boxes for prints
Book arts
- VD292 Bookbinding: learn to bind artists' books.


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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

Very good informative course with clear explanation and help. Interesting historical background, I would consider doing it again
Course Rating
Review by SarahJW / (Posted on 15/04/2019)
Tutor Biographies
Royston Haward Tutor Website

Royston has more than 46 years of experience as a bookbinder, beginning his apprenticeship in 1973. He is accredited with basic and advanced City & Guilds in Craft Bookbinding, gaining a distinction at advanced level. In 1984 he joined Sangorski & Sutcliffe where he acquired a love of fine binding. Royston has been a part time Tutor at the London College of Printing and Camberwell College of Art. He has run workshops and masterclasses on basic and advanced techniques of fine binding, as well as more specialised workshops in areas such as wooden board bindings, Cosway bindings and Paring and Sharpening Techniques. Additionally, prior to his retirement in 2015, he had 25 years of experience at the British Library Conservation Centre, conserving rare books and manuscripts. Royston now works part time as a bookbinding tutor at City Lit and is a visiting tutor at the Royal Library in Windsor, as well as teaching private students.

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.

Book your place

Course Code: VD316

Tue, day, 21 Jul - 11 Aug '20

Duration: 4 sessions (over 4 weeks)

Full fee: £229.00
Senior fee: £183.00
Concession: £140.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

Download form & post

Any questions? visualarts@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 7492 2700/2703

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.