Bookbinding Workshop Result Image

Show Me The Way and I Will Make A Note Of It

Eee, I ‘ad a reet nice day out the other day and actually went to a workshop as a student, rather than a teacher. Was even well impressed with what I made too!

Fancy a look?

First up, let me tell you a little about the workshop.

I had been looking for a day workshop on making hardbacked notebookes for a while. It’s something that I’ve wanted to do for a while. After a good old google search I found one near me on

Hosted by Marion Archibald at the Old Printing Works in Thornton, Fife, it promised me exactly what I was hoping for so I booked, rocked up and took my seat.

First task of the day was a practice run of folding and stitching the inner pages.

Much to learn although I think I managed the folding, marking and punching part Ok.

Book Binding Course 1
Book Binding Workshop

It was then onto the real thing – eek! This time some lovely quality inner pages hand stitched with book binding thread and some coloured end pages.

Book Binding Workshop 3

Phew! Managed it with one small hiccup that no-one can see, thanks to a canny little tip from Marion, so I reckon, that’ll do. Lol.

Time to add a little sturdiness to the project along with some of the decorative elements.

Book Binding Workshop 4

Mull and end tabs added.

Now for the cover!

Many measurements, and a little careful cutting, later and I had the ‘guts’ of my cover.

Book Binding Workshop 5

Next, some book binding fabric to make it look professional. Some mental and physical agility required…

Book Binding Workshop 6

Happy with that though. It was starting to look like a book!

Decorative cover papers next. I went for an old map page as I do like the colours in it. No significance to the places though.

More measuring, cutting, gluing and a very interesting note about how the outer corners were formed and … ta-daaa!

Book Binding Workshop 7

Didn’t realise that these papers went on top of the fabric spine as I’d always assumed that the fabric spine covered the papers – does make for a much cleaner look so I’m very glad of that little tid-bit of info.

Finally, to stick it all together. It could all go boobs up here!

Thankfully not noticeably so.

Book Binding Workshop 11


Really loved the little details of the ribbon and the end tabs – proper professional looking.

My first actual hard backed hand stitch hand covered notebook!

I’ve obviously totally forgotten all of the instructions but I cannot tell you how much of a joy the day was. Not just because Marion was a patient and thoroughly good host but because it was awesome to have a little time to just make for the sake of it and come away with something that I was proud of.

Very invigorating indeed!

What do you think? Something for you next year maybe?

I know for a fact that I have the bug now and will likely need to go make some decorative papers to make some 100% unique books.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them in the comments section below.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to sharing more with you soon!

Bye for now.

J :)

18 thoughts on “Show Me The Way and I Will Make A Note Of It

  1. It looks stunning John, great to read that you enjoyed it and that it is something for yourself to do and not for the whole world (meaning us blogreaders😁)
    Have a great weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, looks fab John. How lovely that you got some ‘me’ time instead of giving it to us all the time 😍 Not something that I have ever tried but likening anything crafty I would certainly love a day doing it too. Happy days xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Your book looks amazing John! It’s lovely to see crafts like this still being done … proves there’s still room for the humble book in this digital age!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Wow John it looks amazing 😍 for me one of the joys of crafting is that there’s always something new to learn – in my case Lots to learn 😂 Kim x

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Fantastic we all never stop learning, looks lovely and well made another hobby on the go me thinks for you , great as presents.
    Well done on such fab book , all the best

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I would love to do a course on this, if I could find one in S.E. Queensland. Have had a go at it myself, just guessing what to do, but your reply to gypsy541 has given me a good hint. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Gorgeous book John, you’ve done a very professional job. I could do with going on a course like this, as my daughter’s girlfriend loves personalised notebooks, and for the past couple of years I’ve been altering shop bought ones for her,but sometimes it’s hard getting the right ones to alter as a lot of them are coated. Will have to look into this. Kath x

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I can’t go off and do courses right now because elderly needy dogs but that looks fab…certainly one to keep in mind along with one of your scan n cut courses

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I saw this on Facebook the other day, very impressive. I’ve often looked at ‘proper’ bookbinding, the only thing that holds me back is the arthritis in my hands. Do you need fairly strong hands to do the stitching?

    Liked by 1 person

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