Stage 2/Part 2: Binding the Book by Hand

Welcome back to following the story of me making a one of a kind heirloom. The original name for this project is called Xmas Revolution. But as I am making each item, I realized that it isn't about Xmas at all. But purely about changing the image of freedom fighters. The first stage was the process of making wooden medallions with the faces of the heroes. The next stage is to create a book to be paired with the display. This book is very important as well. 

In most history books and online encyclopedias, black heroes are slanted. It is a means of racism and propaganda,  and demonstrates that even though we are going into 2020, there are still many who cannot stomache giving black people the just hero recognition that they deserve.

So... i wanted to do just that!

This book is made 100% by hand. Each page illustration is paintef by hand with high quality ink on vellum sheets. The goal was to create an aged book, as though a Black family created a family tradition of preserving their stories in this way. 

Originally,  I began making this book by creating each page separately, as sheets. As i began to do this, i realized that keeping the sheets of vellum laying around, may result in the sheets getting ruined (as many know, vellum is not cheap and this vellum took time to dye and cut, so preserving them became top priority). 

I began to develop the cover idea. I wanted to keep the antique look, so i got quality brown leather and crinkled it up. Then using a cover board (which is really dense, I recommend using a saw to cut it), i cut out the cover and cut off about an inch width for the stitching. 

Using my glue gun (yep, i know - a glue gun isn't Medieval lol), i glued the leather to the board, with about 1cm distance from the stitching pieces and the main cover. Then, attached paper for the inside.

Next i began measuring out the stitching holes.

Because vellum is so thin, i decided to add binding tape to strengthen it.

Next, i began weaving the pages with waxed string. I kept the frays loose for that rough look.

Then i did another stitching to prevent the book from opening like an accordion.

I added cotton binding to fuse the edges, then painted the ends to make it look consistent. 

And viola! 

 With the book nicely bound, i will proceed with decorating the pages and of course, keep you posted. 🥰


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