Thursday, 8 January 2009

Anandwan Book Cloth. Part Two.

Once the Formica work surface was spotless a small length of cotton fabric was damped out. Natural fabrics are best for making bookcloth and the damping out ensures that there are no wrinkles, eliminates the risk of water marks later on and keeps the fabric in contact with the work surface.

Next a piece of paper was glued out. The only available adhesive on site was a PVA 'Fevicole' turned out to be pretty good stuff. The paper was cut bigger than the cloth by 2cm on all edges.
The paper was then picked up using a ruler. This makes it much easier to handle the paper and gives far greater control when applying the paper to the cloth.
The paper is carefully placed over the cloth, ensuring that the glued surface goes toward the still damp cloth and that the 2cm overlap is equal.
The paper is tamped down using a hard bristle brush. This tamping down gets rid of air pockets and ensures that the paper has a good bond with the cloth.
The final tamp.
Along all four edges P V A was applied to the paper ( only for 1cm ) the whole lot is then peeled off the work surface......
..... then laid out cloth upermost.
The P V A along the edges of the paper are pressed down. This was/is important as it will make sure that the bookcloth will dry flat and become taught... like a drum skin. This technique is called drumming on... simple really. A small piece of waste paper is tucked under on egde of the paper, this will allow a knfe to be slipped under the dry bookcloth for easy removal from the work surface. Job done.
One of the nice things about teaching is when you see the student becoming the teacher and passing on the skills.
The next thing to do is to find a use for the book cloth.....


Anonymous said...

Finally, we get to see your work in India - thought you'd given up the blog - I've been looking on a regular basis.

Paul said...

I'd like to try this. What weight of paper did you use for the backing?

The bookbinder said...

As always we work with what we have. In an ideal situation the best paper is about 40 gsm and Japanese. The long fibres give strength without bulking up the paper. In Anandwan we used PVA, it was all we had however, a Japanese paste such as Yamato Nori works very well ( if using J paste use a wide brush not a roller) I find it best to experiment with what you have to find what works for you. Good luck.