Unless otherwise noted, these workshops are held at the San Francisco Center for the Book. You can register on the webpage for each individual class, linked to in each listing, or call the Center at 415-565-0545.
I also offer a wide range of private tutoring in special topics; please inquire if you have a specific area of interest. Past lessons have included boxmaking, tooling, book conservation and basic paper repair techniques, edge gilding, photo albums and portfolios, and more. My full contact info is listed here.
Week Long Bookbinding Core
Since 2014, the San Francisco Center for the Book has offered the set of Bookbinding Core classes in an easy to digest series of five consecutive days. In these five days, you will make four books in ascending level of difficulty. You will learn about grain direction, using a board shear and a manual guillotine, how to use a job backer and how to set up a sewing frame, how to distinguish between the different adhesives used in bookbinding and why to choose them, and more. As of late 2018, we have graduated over 100 students in this core certificate program, readying students for a life of happy adventures in bookbinding! Come join us!
Monday-Friday, December 10-14; 9:30-5:30; Register/more info, or call 415-565-0545
Monday-Friday, February 25-March 1; 9:30-5:30; Register/more info, or call 415-565-0545
Monday-Friday, March 18-22; 9:30-5:30; Register/more info, or call 415-565-0545
Full Parchment Binding
If you have ever seen or handled a binding covered in parchment, you know the great advantages of using parchment as a covering material. The ghostly, ethereal appearance, the cool and smooth surface, the way it seems to generate its own light from within. Parchment is quite durable, as well: it is resistant to abrasion and wears well. However, parchment is highly responsive to moisture, and using adhesives with it can be a disaster if you don’t use them correctly. In this class, we will learn the best ways to work within this sometimes finicky covering material. We will also be gilding one edge, sewing French double core endbands, and if there is time, we will tool our covers as well. This class is full, but register to be added to the wait list.
Saturday-Monday (Presidents’ Day Weekend), January 19-21, 9:30-5:30; register here
Orientation to Leather
It is impossible to imagine the history of bookbinding without leatherwork, and difficult to advance in learning bookbinding without having some skill or understanding of how leather is used in making books. Fancy books, plain ones, rustic or refined, historical and modern all have used leather in some fashion. Even many books without the tiniest scrap of leather still have borrowed working methods from leather bookbinding. This introduction to the advanced track in leatherwork for bookbinding helps students cross the frontier of those remote and mysterious tools and techniques commonly used in leather bookbinding today.
The first half of the class will explain and demonstrate the technical aspects of knives, and you will experience how to get and maintain a great edge. We will look at the various advantages and disadvantages of PSA abrasive sheets, Japanese water stones, oil stones, and stropping compounds. We will also explain the different surfaces available for using your knife, and how they act on knives: litho stones, marble, and tempered glass. If you have a knife for leather working that has dulled or lost its shape, and you’d like to learn how to tune it up yourself, please bring it to work on.
The second half of the class will focus on the various methods used to pare leather: edge paring with knives, and all-over paring with a Schärf-Fix or Brockman paring machine. There will be plenty of time for guided practice on your own in order to gain confidence with this essential skill. For those who learn quickly, paring for onlays and labels will be covered. This workshop is a requirement for the advanced leather track in bookbinding at the San Francisco Center for the Book.
Saturday, January 27, 9:30-5:30. Register/more info or call 415-565-0545.
During the early part of the 1900s, leather was in short supply in northern Europe. Always a more desirable book covering material than cloth or paper, especially in areas of hard wear such as the spine and corners, leather was becoming rare due to the first world war’s restrictions on the use of it in non-military applications. Binderies had to find ways to provide durable, attractive books while using less leather. Millimeter bindings were born out of the need to conserve rare materials, yet still get the benefit of using a little bit of them. Allowing only a single millimeter of leather to show on the boards at the spine and corners, these bindings also made the most of what northern Europeans inherently had in abundance: leather paring skills. Since the early 1900s, many hand binders around the world have developed and refined this style of binding as an artistic expression. In this class, we will begin to explore the creative options available when making use of this modern style of hardcover binding with leather. We will use our own paste papers (if available–the instructor will provide some if you don’t have yours from Core 1) to decorate the larger portion of the covers.
Note: Orientation to Leather is a prerequisite for this class.
A pair of Sundays: February 17 & 24; 9:30-5:30. Register/more info or call 415-565-0545.
Watch a video about the advanced track in leather bookbinding at the Center!
Master Class in Using the Kwikprint
The Kwikprint is a machine eminently designed for bookbinders’ ease of use in titling books. With practice, you can make all your books speak with gold or pigmented foils. Learning the basic safety guidelines and the simple techniques for using the Kwikprint, we will guide you to making a perfect impression with hand- set type, even if you have never set type before. Projects we’ll complete will be to make a title label for a book of your choosing (feel free to bring one!), and to stamp directly on book covers (provided, though you may bring a book cover for this part as well).
There are no prerequisites for this class.
Sunday, February 10; 9:30-5:30. Register/more info, or call 415-565-0545
Bookbinding Core 4: Classic Rounded Back Cloth Binding
The final class in our Core Bookbinding series (taught in two sessions) uses skills learned in each previous class to create a beautiful and classic rounded back cloth binding. In this structure students will learn to round and back, creating a shoulder using a job backer. Then, two-color silk endbands will be sewn before the boards are attached and covered. More terms, more tools, more techniques: such are the rewards of the skilled bookbinder!
A pair of Sundays, March 24 and 31; 9:30-5:30. Register/more info or call 415-565-0545.
Master Class in Using the Kensol
Foil stamping with dies allows amazing creative flexibility. The process can accommodate unique fonts, line art, and logos, and is the best, most efficient way to make your logo or artwork shine. Learn the technical aspects of the Kensol foil stamper in this one-day class. The Kensol can be used to stamp invitations, business cards, and stationery, in addition to the more traditional uses of stamping book covers and title labels.
In this class, we will guide you to making a perfect impression with magnesium dies, and show ways to use hand set type on the Kensol as well. Projects we’ll complete are designed to maximize the amount of time students get to spend on the machine. Upon completion of this class, students will have the confidence to undertake their own foil stamping projects, and will be certified to rent studio time.
There are no prerequisites for this class.
Sunday, April 14; 9:30-5:30. Register/more info, or call 415-565-0545
Past Student Reviews
Here is an article one of my students wrote about his experiences in the Week-Long Core.
“The knowledge of the instructor and her ability to recognize the skill level of the students was key to the class. Juliayn was able to assist each individual according to their skill level with professionalism and patience, making a great classroom experience.”
“Juliayn was a great teacher. She was patient and also good at rolling with whatever came up. I appreciated her attitude to the learning process (that we need to practice these things before getting them right) while also emphasizing best practices and techniques for bookbinding. I enjoyed the time when she would deviate from the actual binding of the book to give us a mini lecture on the field, on adhesives, paper quality, where to buy materials, history of the art, etc.”
“I loved the instructor’s calm manner and accessibility- plus she has a great sense of humor, something much appreciated during stressful maneuvers.”
“Juliayn is always so cheerful, funny, organized, and patient! I love her classes! She teaches good practices which promote good habits.”
“Can’t say enough of Juliayn’s patience, composure, and professionalism. I struggled with several steps and she was always there to help me with her smile and kind heart.”
“Love her sense of humor and friendliness, as well as her depth of knowledge. Very happy that I got to take this class.”
“Thanks to Juliayn’s encouragement and excellent teaching, I was finally able to pare leather without tearing giant holes in it. ”