Miniature Bookbinding with James Reid-Cunningham April 29-May 1, 2016

image_miniatures1Description: Miniature books present difficult design and structural challenges to the bookbinder. A true miniature is less than three inches tall, and during this workshop, the student will construct three books of diminishing size: a long stitch binding with decorated boards, a quarter leather binding, and an accordion in a wrapper with a tongue and slot enclosure. Class projects will contrast the utility of case binding, accordion, and non-adhesive structures for miniature books, with a concentration on flexibility and book action. We will analyze materials and techniques suitable for small format books. The limitations inherent in small-scale books will challenge students to do precisely executed and finely detailed work.

James Reid-Cunningham is a bookbinder and design binder with a private practice providing book and paper conservation services. He studied bookbinding with Mark Esser at the North Bennet Street School in Boston, and received the school’s distinguished alumni award in 2006. He spent thirty years as a conservator of rare paper-based artifacts at Harvard University and the Boston Athenaeum, and he served as the President of the Guild of Book Workers from 2006 to 2010. A noted teacher of bookbinding and conservation, from 2009 to 2013 he was the adjunct lecturer in book conservation in the graduate art conservation program at Buffalo State College. He exhibits design bindings nationally and internationally. His website is

Make a trip of it! We scheduled the workshop for this weekend to take advantage of all the cool things going on about Dallas, including: Dallas Book FestivalMayfest, Independent Bookstore Day (April 30), uniquely Texan museum exhibits, and author talks! See the list here. Registered students will receive a Welcome Packet including more details about what to bring for the workshop, directions, and local recommendations for Dallas.

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MeetUp! First Folio & Private Tour – April 2, 2016


Join your fellow Lone Star members to visit Shakespeare’s First Folio traveling exhibit in College Station (the only stop in Texas!) and for a private tour of Cushing Special Collections at Texas A&M University.

To sign up, simply RSVP to our Lone Star Chapter facebook events page.

Saturday, April 2, 2016

1:00 pm– Meet at Harvest Coffee Bar: headcount, parking on campus instructions, and caffeine hit.  101 N Main St, Bryan, TX 77803

2:00 pm– Cushing Special Collections: highlights from the collection and Modern Literature exhibit

3:00 pm– Stark Gallery: Shakespeare’s First Folio!

If you have some time, make a weekend out of it. It is First Friday that weekend in Bryan/College Station, which means street performers, artists and Non-profit demos, and food trucks! Plus Shakespeare productions Friday and Saturday nights.

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Ruth and Lyle Sellers Medical Collection

Opening today in the galleries at Bridwell Library on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas is an exhibit of the Ruth and Lyle Sellers Collection.  The collection includes works on the History of Medicine, Natural History, and  Famous Literature.  When viewing the exhibit in person, use your smart phone to scan the QR Codes on the wall in order to see more images from each book.  The gallery is open from 8am-6pm weekdays, 10am-6pm Sat., and 2pm-6pm Sun.

Follow this link to the view the online exhibit:  Sellers Collection

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Lost Doves Press Type

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Jefferson Bible

Jefferson Bible

After you follow the link to this very well done digital copy, check out the conservation project conducted on the bible in 2011.

No matter what you think of this religiously the Jefferson Bible is an interesting study in bookbinding and the history of one of America’s founding fathers.  Thomas Jefferson essentially “edited” passages from the first four books of the new testament, eliminating all the parts he didn’t agree with (miracles and the resurrection) and putting everything else back together in a single volume focused entirely on Jesus, the man, and his teachings on morality.  In the end it was only 84 pages long.  He did this for his own purposes and kept it to himself throughout his lifetime without any intention of publishing.  (Although now you can buy a facsimile copy.)

This is very much an artist’s book, painstakingly created long before X-Acto knives were a thing and put together with who knows what adhesive.  Be impressed people.

Two of the source bibles.


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Illustration from Lithographers Journal, 1940

Illustration from Supplement to the Lithographer’s Journal -Feb 1940 Vol. xxiv. No.111

Before getting into binding I was a printmaker and I’ve always loved old presses and the Rube Goldberg level of complexity they sometimes achieved. Look at the size of these things.  That’s a whole lot of machine just to print 4 colors.


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Chinese Insect Paper

Interesting article in Archival Products recently about the history and use of insect-resistant paper in China. Author Jody Beenk is the Head of Preservation & Conservation at University of Hong Kong Libraries.  In the article she describes each of the different types of traditional insect-resistant paper: Yellow, Wax Burnish, Pepper, Blue, and Orange Red.

Here’s the pdf: ChineseInsectPaper_apnewsvol19no4

Insect Paper

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