Account Book Binding

August 5th, 2024 9:30 AM

  • Instructor: Dominic Riley
  • Workshop Type: Binding
  • Workshop Status: Open
  • Sessions: 5
  • In-person or Online?: In-person

Workshop Fee (includes materials fee): $770
Click here to apply for a Windgate scholarship

Masks are no longer required for workshops, though anyone is welcome to wear one if they wish.

“Account book binding or, more properly speaking stationery binding includes everything from the penny memorandum book to the massive ledger” wrote Paul Hasluck in 1903 about this ubiquitous, but now rarely taught area of the bookbinder’s repertoire. The account book is a complex, intricate and extremely robust structure that was developed in the early nineteenth century for record books which needed to open perfectly flat. 

We will start by sewing the sections onto heavy webbing, and then reinforcing the sewing further with cat-gut tackets, and sewing on strong cloth jointed endpapers. The book is rounded but not backed, the edges decorated, and then the spine lined with layers of paper and calfskin. Then we’ll make the special laminated flange which is inserted into split boards along with the famous ‘spring back’, an extraordinary steam-molded spine which grips the book firmly, throwing open the pages. After this, we’ll cover the book in reverse calf, Russia bands, and vellum lacing, all characteristic of the style. Finally, we’ll tool the boards in the traditional way using candle smoke, and add a gold blocked spine label.

>> Prerequisite: Bookbinding Core 1-4 or equivalent, plus Orientation to Leather or experience working with/paring leather corners and turn-ins <<

Materials to Bring:  Students with their own bookbinding tools should bring them to class.

Optional: leather paring knife, if you have one

Date & Time: Monday-Friday, August 5-9, 2024 :: 9:30am-5:30pm

Location: 375 Rhode Island St, San Francisco, CA 94103

NOTE: Please read over the SFCB Registration Policies before signing up for a class. Registration will close approximately three days prior to the start date of the workshop to allow the instructor time to prep materials for class. We recommend you not wait to register, as workshops that don't meet our minimum enrollment will be canceled, sometimes as much as a week in advance.

About the Instructor | Dominic Riley (he/him)

Dominic Riley Is an internationally renowned bookbinder, artist, lecturer and teacher. He has his bindery in England, from where he travels across the UK teaching and lecturing. He spends part of the year teaching in San Francisco and across the USA. His work is mostly restoration and Design Binding, for which he has won many prizes in the Designer Bookbinders competition. He was elected a Fellow of DB in 2008 and is Patron of the New Zealand Association of Book Crafts. His bindings are in collections worldwide, including the British Library, the Grolier Club in New York and the San Francisco Public Library. In 2013 he won first prize, the Sir Paul Getty Award, in the International Bookbinding Competition. Dominic is a past President of the Society of Bookbinders. Dominic and Michael Burke are co-founders of Book Camp, an immersive residential bookbinding experience which aims to teach new generations of binders.

He has taught masterclasses in the USA, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, at the Centro del Bel Libro in Switzerland, the Czech Republic, and Canada.

Past Student Reviews:

“I very much enjoyed Dominic and his instruction. As always, I'm happy to learn new techniques even if I'm somewhat unsuccessful at the time. However, Dominic was always ready to be helpful which I appreciated. His vast knowledge of the history of bookbinding is also stimulating and interesting.”

“Dominic is a master binder. His skill level is unsurpassed. It is a privilege to learn from him.”

“I have taken many classes from Dominic and he is always a pleasure to learn from, and demanding. He sets a high personal standard of work.” 

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375 Rhode Island St
San Francisco, CA 94103-5133
United States