The First Book I Bound, My First Press, and Some Mistakes I Made

So, here is the first book I ever bound. While the top photo is quite dramatic, check the other images to see some mistakes I made. The spine is stitched because I recycled the leather from a jacket and wanted to cover the old holes.

The choice of silver paper was absolutely wrong. It momentarily crumpled after I applied the glue. And you can see the cords under the paper. Obviously, not flattened enough. The cords themselves also were quite awful. The synthetic thread just wasn’t ready to cooperate and twisted all the time.

I didn’t provide for any endpapers, so I had to paste down the first and the last pages. The sawn holes, as you can see, were too large, especially as I didn’t cover them with any endpapers.

As a bonus, you’ll see a photo of my first press made with two planks that also served me as a sewing frame for many months. And, yes, I pared the leather with a hobby knife. Surprisingly, I was able to do sort of passable job. I didn’t know any better! 🙂

This project is almost 14 years old. The book is a collection of articles written by my uncle, who is a playwright and a journalist. I see lots of mistakes in it, but at the same moment, I’m a bit amazed it ended this well, considering I had absolutely no experience before I began working on this project!

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