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  1. Peggy McDevitt
    July 31, 2017 @ 1:02 pm

    Great tips, thanks. I wrapped bricks with cloth and use them as weights.


  2. Karen
    August 1, 2017 @ 1:55 am

    I go to my local library’s annual book sale and buy up the large format children’s books on the last day of the sale – the books sometimes are free, or for a small flat fee I can buy a bag/box full.

    I peel the cover off to get at the book boards. The large format can give me 2 covers if I cut it in half or even more for smaller projects.

    As much as I hate to tear up a book, the library will take the unsold books to the dump the next day for disposal!


    • Robin
      August 20, 2017 @ 10:06 am

      I do the same thing! 😀


  3. Oksana Kurinskaya
    August 1, 2017 @ 4:04 pm

    Thank you. Very useful tips! It was interesting to read about the awl. Indeed, it is important to find a non-conical sharp awl.


  4. shanzy294
    May 20, 2018 @ 4:06 pm

    Great tips. I’m just starting my journey into the world of book binding and it can be a little confusing with all the new terms. You explain things perfectly and provide great tips. Thank you.


  5. Diane Ziomek
    October 21, 2018 @ 9:40 pm

    I work at our local library, and have access to withdrawn books. I have taken a crash course in book repair, but creating my own is something I would like to spend more time doing. I’m an author, so combining my written words with book creation could result in some interesting projects.


  6. Vicky luffman
    February 11, 2019 @ 6:45 am

    I am a textile artist and was looking for an easy way to create books for holding my samples of Felting, shibori and silk painted samples for my workshops. Thank you for sharing your book making talents. I can’t wait to try!


    • Ali Manning
      February 12, 2019 @ 8:05 am

      You’re very welcome Vicky. I would love to see the books that you make!


  7. Carlos
    March 8, 2019 @ 1:44 pm

    Actually, waxed linen thread is not always the best choice. Here in TX, we have found untaxed is better. Waxed linen can leave greasy spots in your books, from heat. So we only use unwaxed linen thread. Even mailing a book somewhere cooler can cause melting, in a hot mailbox or mail truck.


    • Ali Manning
      March 17, 2019 @ 11:21 am

      Thanks for the tip Carlos.


  8. Lisa
    February 26, 2021 @ 1:00 pm

    For book boards (and hinges), I recycle cardboard from cereal and rice boxes, as well as from new calendars (they usually have a large piece of cardboard to keep them flat) and any other cardboard that is thick enough. (Hey, I try to upcycle what I can.) If I need a really stiff book, I simply glue pieces of cardboard together, but usually after I’ve finished covering them, they’re stiff enough. This may be because I use sample wallpaper sheets for covers, end papers, and spines, which help reinforce the book.

    I make both open and closed spine books, some with hinges and some without. Regardless, all the binding is on the OUTSIDE of the spine, which makes for a very rustic look. This method is simpler than sewing all the signatures together; plus, you can use a decorative cord, string, yarn, ribbon, whatever for binding and it really pops.

    I bought a book years ago called “Handcrafted Journals, Albums, Scrapbooks, and More” by Marie Browning. It’s where I get much of my inspiration for bookmaking.


  9. Mo
    July 11, 2022 @ 12:25 pm

    When I taught bookbinding to high school students, I couldn’t afford to purchase enough awls for everyone, so I made my own with sharp tapestry needles and corks! I like these better than the store bought awls because I can make a smaller, finer hole for sewing.


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