Visuals For an 8-Pointed Star Lacing Pattern

by Tish Brewer

A couple of years ago I taught a workshop on tacketed bindings that included templates for a lot of different lacing patterns. After teaching the pattern for an 8-pointed star, I thought it would be a nice idea to make a template with the lacing steps color coded- that way each step could be clearly seen without having to refer to more than one instructional diagram. Below are photos of that completed template, along with the original written instructions used for that workshop. Circle 1 refers to the inner circle of holes, circle 2 the next concentric circle outward, and so on. To be clear, you would usually be doing this with all the same color lacing- the differing colors are just my way of showing the steps.

Star/circle 1 (seen below in orange): Start in the back middle hole, leaving at least a ½” inch tail in the back as you move to the front. (Front) Enter any hole in the inner circle from the front. I usually go straight up to 12 o’clock. (Back) Enter the middle hole again and adjust tension. (Front) Travel to the next open hole in a clockwise direction repeating the above steps until your thread is in the back and there are 8 rays in the front. At this point, either enter the middle hole from back to front and continue with circle 2, or trim off the excess and begin the next step with a new length of lacing.

Star/circle 2 (red): With a new lacing or the same one, enter the starting hole (to the left and down from top center) from the back in circle 2. (Front) Make a counter-clockwise ray diagonally down to circle 1. (Back) Travel straight up to circle 2. (Front) Make a counter-clockwise ray down to circle 1 again. (Back) Travel straight up (or straight out, if you aren’t turning the pattern) to circle 2. Continue this until you exit from back to front at the whole you started in, or attach a new lace in the back at this point.

Next (yellow): This step will be in reverse of the pattern just made, and makes a set of x’s on the front. (Front) Make a diagonal ray in the clockwise direction down to the next hole in circle 1. (Back) Travel straight up to the hole in circle 2, making a double layer in the back. (Front) Make a diagonal ray in the clockwise direction down to the next open hole in circle 1. Continue this pattern until you enter from back to front in the hole you started in. Again, continue to the next circle or trim the lacing and add a new one before coming from back to front.

Star/circle 3 (green): This star is similar to star 2, using holes in circles 2 and 3. (Front) Make a ray moving from the start hole (same orientation as you started with in circle 2, to the left and a bit down from the top center of this circle), making a counter-clockwise ray moving up to the next counter-clockwise hole in circle 3. (Back) Move straight down to a hole in circle 2. (Front) Make a diagonal ray moving counter-clockwise up the circle 3. (Back) Move straight down (out) to a hole in circle 2. Continue until you exit from the back to the front in the hole where you began.

Next (pink): Now, you’ll be in reverse of the pattern just made, making another set of x’s on the front of the star. (Front) Make a diagonal ray moving from the start hole up, clockwise. (Back) Move straight down to a hole in circle 2, creating a double layer of lacing on the reverse. (Front) Make a diagonal ray moving up to circle 3, clockwise. (Back) Move straight down (out) to a hole in circle 2. Continue all the way around, then cut off any excess lacing in the back and tuck or glue under another lace. You can knot it if you like, but if you are actually using leather lacings they are unlikely to budge very much, and should be held pretty snug by the holes, which are enlarged only when needed as you go.

That’s it, try it! By the way, this template was made with thick folder stock and the holes were made using a Japanese hole punch, pretty simple. If you have questions, just leave me a comment. Happy lacing!

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Front of lacing pattern, oriented to top.

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Reverse of lacing pattern. As you can see, the pattern needs to make sense from the reverse as well, since it would be visually exposed on the inside of a book’s cover. You wouldn’t usually have all the little knots you see here along the top right diagonal- that’s just because I was using multiple threads/colors for the purpose of instruction. 

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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 www.reid-cunningham.com.

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

First_Folio_open_book_image

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.

lithopresses

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