Sewn boards and drum leaf bindings for book arts

Course Dates: 06/05/22 - 20/05/22
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: Keeley Street
These book forms are great for making artists’ books and books with content, as they both open flat with little or no restriction at the spine fold. Come and make some models to experiment with, or bring some artwork with you and use this to produce two versatile and creative structures. Some experience of sewing multi-section books and basic bookbinding will be helpful.
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Full fee £179.00 Senior fee £143.00 Concession £109.00

This course has now finished

Course Code: VD439

Finished Fri, day, 06 May - 20 May '22

Duration: 3 sessions (over 3 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?

The Sewn-Boards binding is a structure that was originally developed from historical book forms for use in book conservation. It can be made with both flexible and hard covers which are sewn on to the book, hence the name. The structure and covering allows the pages to be thrown up on opening and not restricted at the spine edge. The Drum Leaf is an adhesive-based book that also allows pages to open flat. It is structured so there is no stitching through the centre folds so it works well for full-page spreads. As only one side of the page is visible when the book is glued together, it is ideal for use when you are only able to print on one side of the paper or for example, if you are working with thicker papers such as printmaking papers.

What will we cover?

- Sewing using varieties of link stitch
- Sewing on covers
- Infilling, spine lining and covering techniques
- Construction of drum leaf pages for binding
- Use of adhesives
- Creative applications for binding
- History of the forms and examples of artists’ books using these techniques.

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

- Make two small scale (A5) models: sewn-boards and drum leaf binding
- Experiment with these forms to develop your own creative work
- Use a range of materials and know how to apply them
- Recognise the book forms and the work of some contemporary practitioners.

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

This course is open to all levels but some experience of sewing multi-section books and an interest in working with creative visual content will be an advantage.

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

You will be taught by practical demonstration, group and individual tuition, hands-on workshop sessions. Handouts will be provided where necessary and all class materials will be provided on Google Classroom which you will be able to join before the class starts. The course is designed so that the work is covered during the sessions but you may find that some preparatory work done outside the classroom sessions will enhance your experience.

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

The cost of basic materials is covered in the course fee. You may wish to bring your own artwork to use or your own specialist papers etc. to develop your own creative book forms. Hand tools are available to use in the classroom but please do bring your own kit if you have it.
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?

VD409 Visible stitches and spectacular spines: experiments in exposed sewing.
VD328 Piano Hinge bindings
VD292 Bookbinding: Learn to bind artists' books
VD438 Print, Design and Bind a book in a week.

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.