Traditional Book


book 2

Individual Project
GD317, Spring 2015 with Professor Kermit Bailey

The goal of this project was to explore the rules and structures used to construct a traditional book.

The process involved multiple iterations for studies in grid, typography, page size, and print layout as well as several prototypes for the stitch and hard-cover binding.

Project Detail

Working with an 1896 text I found on Project Gutenberg, I applied research on proportional page layouts, typefaces, and techniques for traditional bookmaking to format and construct this book complete with end papers, title and half-title pages, publisher note, table of contents, several chapters, and colophon.

Inside book

I used a 5-hole pamphlet stitch to bind the signatures, which were then sewn together and secured with glue and muslin. I added an attached bookmark then used decorative end sheets to finish and reinforce the book.

Traditional Book 5-stitch Binding


I printed the cover on faux leather paper and wrapped it over print board I had cut to size, finishing with mitered corners. I used a fabric textured paper to cover the backbone and join the front and back cover boards.



While this book is not one I referenced during this project, it clearly describes the steps involved in bookbinding.

Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction by Aldren Auld Watson