Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Amazing bookbinding!

There are a lot book binders on Etsy. Many of them make nice journals, but very few make really special ones. Among my favorite book binders is Anca from Baghy who happens to be my sister :) We live in different countries and see each other very rarely. Twice, or maybe three times a year if we're lucky. We learned bookbinding together a few years ago and from there we developed quite different styles. I'm so happy to follow her work and see what an amazing job she is doing. So when I read the other day a post on her blog about a custom order she received, I had to share it with you too. I just love the way this book turned out!

It all starts with a request to make a book out of some documents that attest the legendary gunfight in Arizona, known as the "Gunfight at the OK Corral". 

"The book had to have the look and feel of a book from the old wild west. I thought that is really cool as the actual handwritten testimonies of the men involved in that gunfight are to be found on the internet, scanned at good resolution. The documents were recently found in a jail storage room.

The documents were yellowish with stains from old adhesive tape so I had to put them on a similar background so that when I'd cut the prints to size, there wouldn't be any white borders left or anything strange. 

I decided to print them in color, as if I were to print them in gray-scale and then tan them they wouldn't look as good.

There were 8 testimonies and a cover sheet so I wanted to separate them somehow so I created some extra pages in between them, also on old paper background, using an old typewriter font to write which testimony that was.

Because of the size of the documents, I had to print A3 sheets that would contain two different pages on each side that I then folded in half. The hardest and most time consuming task was to figure out which page continues with which one, cause due to the binding would be like... page 37 continues with page 54 and so on.

Then, out in the town to find the best printer service - I made sample pages at about four different locations - one was too contrast, another made unequal borders that made the binding center offset compared to the other side of the sheet, another made the pages much too shiny, and finally I found one that printed them with a nice color and feel. I opted for thicker pages as if I were to print all the documents on normal paper, the book, which is quite large, almost letter size, would have the feel of a flimsy magazine.
After I trimmed the pages, found a distressed leather piece and sewed the pages in, the real fun begun - I folded the pages just a bit, then ironed them, to have these subtle creases that give it a nice look.

I added a belt with a vintage buckle and distressed the leather even more, tanning it with sepia pigments.
The last part was painting the journal - my favorite part :)"

This was a part of her blog post, but you can read all of it and see more  photos here. Needless to say that the customer was thrilled with her book. It was ordered as a present for the 60th birthday of her aunt who actually lives in that area.

I think this is a perfect example of a book art project. The outcome is so impressive that I told her she should make another one and sell it in her shop. I admit I'm a big fun of westerns but I also think it's a lovely theme and there are many people out there that would buy one. What do you think?


sarala said...

I think it would really be a collector's piece. People really get into the old west. It is amazing that they actually have some old documents from these men. What a find.

Rosa Phoenix said...

amazing work! I see that book-making runs in your family.

paula said...

that is quite amazing teo! thanks for sharing your sisters work. love it! off to see her blog :)

Baghy said...

Thank you so much sis for the awesome advertising! I know you have a passion for anything with a vintage touch so I thought you might like it :) It was an interesting project indeed and I am glad I had the opportunity to work on it. Now my appetite for making vintage books grew bigger, beware of the competition :) Just kidding, it's too difficult!