BOOKBINDING 2017 -2018

Numbers are strictly limited to a maximum of 8 so please book early.

Friday 8th - Sunday 10th September (2 days) - Photo Albums

Thurs. 26th - Sun. 29th October (3 days) - Three-quarter Leather Binding (Please check availability)


Thurs. 22nd - Sun. 25th March (3 days) - Bookbinding Beginners - The Case-bound Book

Thurs. 10th - Sun. 13th May (3 days) - Decorative Techniques (Waiting list only)

Thurs. 7th - Sun. 10th June (3 days) - Half-leather Binding

Thurs. 5th - Sun. 8th July (3 days) - Box & Slip Case Making
(Waiting list only)

Thurs. 20th - Sun. 23rd September (3 days) - Exploring the Magic and Functionality of Case Binding

Thurs. 25th - Sun. 28th October (3 days) - Off-board Bindings
(Waiting list only)

(arrival 5-6pm, departure 4-5pm)

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We have a range of bookbinding courses at the Grange. If you are completely new to bookbinding, and want to start at the beginning with a view to becoming accomplished, we recommend that you learn the basic skills of making a case-bound book with our Beginners’ course in March. Thereafter, there are lots of ways of adding to those skills and you can choose from some of the more advanced traditional cased bookbinding courses or on one of the themed courses. However, some of the themed courses are also suitable for beginners and you will learn skills that will be useful in any future bookbinding you do. We have asterisked * the courses which can be attended by beginners.

You may like to watch the short film about the Grange here.

Autumn 2017

Making a Photo Album (with Naomi Sadler)*
Friday 8th - Sunday 10th September (2 days)

photo albums small

Photo album inner Photo-album-spine Photo-album-sewn-block

Everybody loves a beautiful photo album.

On this course you will create a blank hand-folded and sewn photo album with 40 leaves (80 pages). The album will have guards (added bulk in the spine) to allow for insertion of pictures. Tissue paper between pages will be optional.
(The pages will be blank so that photos can be affixed with photo corners or similar.)

You will be able to choose from one of two styles:
Either 1) a traditional cloth half-bound style case with patterned or marbled paper, or
2) a more modern, personalised, full-bound cloth binding (for which you will need to bring at least a couple of copies - not an original, please - of a favourite portrait photograph, 6 x 4).

During the course you will learn about the equipment involved in bookbinding and how to use it correctly. The skills you learn will not only enable you to complete the photo album but will also be useful for different bookbinding projects you may undertake in the future.

Beginners welcome.

Three-quarter Leather Binding (with Glenn Malkin)
Thursday 26th - Sunday 29th October (3 days)
(Waiting List Only)

three quarter leather binding

Participants will create a hand-sewn, rounded and backed blank book block with leather joints and coloured paper doublures. The sewing tapes will then be laced on to lined boards and we will make our own applied leather headbands. Whilst applying leather to the spine and fore edges, we will look at ways of giving this traditional style a contemporary look by creating alternative raised band patterns, looking at different covering materials and, if time allows, exploring decorative approaches. This course is for those with some basic experience of binding (and is less suitable for absolute beginners).


Bookbinding Beginners - the Case Bound Book (with Jim MacWilliams)*
Thursday 22nd - Sunday 25th March (3 days)

Cased bookbinding

The Beginners’ course - an ideal starting point if you’ve never done any bookbinding before or only dabbled in it. Whatever you choose to go on and specialise in, or if you just want to work towards repairing your own books, a basic grounding in the traditional skills of bookbinding will be invaluable. This course provides you with an introduction to the tools and techniques of bookbinding and will enable you to produce, by the end of the three days, a case-bound book. You will learn about bookbinding materials, the correct use of bookbinding tools and the technical processes of bookbinding, including sewing, attaching endpapers, glueing, trimming, rounding and backing, case-making and casing-in.

'I have just returned from a book binding course tutored by Jim Mac Williams
and what a privilege to be taught by such an expert bookbinder. Jim is
an inspirational teacher who can put across his subject in a
relaxed & humorous way that brings out the best in his students.
We were all amazed at the amount of work we
accomplished and the standard we achieved.'

Bookbinding Decorative Techniques (with Glenn Malkin)
Thursday 10th - Sunday 13th May (3 days)
(Waiting list only)

glen decoration 2018

Understanding how to construct a book of a particular structure is only the first part of bookbinding. The decoration of a binding is what sets your book apart from others and makes something straightforward into something a bit special.

This three-day workshop will be a largely unstructured exploration of a wide range of decorative techniques away from traditional gold tooling. There will be plenty of opportunity for participants to practice and play, working largely on sample boards rather than finished books, the techniques explored will include:

Edge decoration – sprinkling, painting and tooling
Craquele leather decoration
Leather inlays – lines and panels
Leather onlays - back pared, cushioned, feathered
Reverse transfer printing
Foil tooling with a stylus
Impressed leather
Relief and recess decoration in cloth

Participants should leave with an understanding of each of these techniques and have samples of each to take away and reproduce at home.

'Just a thank you for a splendid weekend. The course was terrific, and Glenn is a superb tutor.
I had such an enjoyable time . . . Thank you also for the amazing, delicious and healthy food.
What a good bunch of people you are.'

Traditional Half-Leather Binding
with Laced on Boards and Raised Bands (with
Jim MacWilliams)
Thursday 7th - Sunday 10th June (3 days)

Leather headband detail - OK Leather marble book OK Leather spine detail OK

This workshop will focus upon the creation of a traditional half leather binding with raised bands. The binding of the book will be undertaken from an already recessed cord sewn and trimmed book block to the finished half leather binding. Prior to undertaking this workshop it would be an advantage to have taken earlier bookbinding courses.

Box and Slip Case Making (with Glenn Malkin)
Thursday 5th - Sunday 7th July (3 days)
(Waiting list only)


Making boxes or cases for books is a key skill for any bookbinder and can enhance and protect your favourite books. On this three-day course, participants will make:

A slip case with a leather rounded back
A drop-back box lined with felt
A portfolio case for loose documents

You will be able to bring along your own books to make your boxes for (size limitations apply) and will have a selection of decorative covering materials to choose from.

Exploring the Magic and Functionality of Case Binding Techniques
for Simple Cloth Case Binding Repairs and
in Alternative Styles of Case Binding (with
Jim MacWilliams)
Thursday 20th - Sunday 23rd September (3 days)

Bookbinding 8

So, you’ve learnt the basics of bookbinding and now you are ready to see some of the things you can do with them.

This 3-day course is aimed at those who have already made a cased book but who want to further develop bookbinding skills. It will mainly focus upon developing the skills required to undertake:

1) cloth case binding repair (where the spine is detached from the book) together with simple page repairs;

2) an attractive, functional and strong library style cloth case binding; and

3) a single-sheet hardback cloth case binding style that is suitable for binding dissertations, thesis or short run publications such as those used for family memoirs.

By the end of this course you will have learnt how to make some simple repairs as well as having two splendid cased books to take home (both of which would make lovely gifts if you can bear to part with your own handiwork!).

To see some photos of the bindery and Jim in action on previous courses held at the Grange, you may like to visit our Blog pages.

Off-boards Binding (with
Glenn Malkin)
Thursday 25th - Sunday 28th October (3 days)
(Waiting list only)

glenn off boards 2018

In this workshop, participants will create Glenn’s version of an off-boards binding from scratch. This approach, often used by design binders, allows the spine covering material to be different to that of the boards. It also enables design work to be applied to the boards before they go on to the book, thereby increasing flexibility whilst reducing risk. The hard bit is doing this in a way which does not introduce lumps or ridges and can still create a delicate and attractive binding.

As a participant you will sew a book, round and back it, add spine linings and then create the two part boards. Decoration of the boards will be limited to the time we have available, though you might like to bring along your own board coverings or design elements if you wish. We will then fill in the inside of the boards and look at joint and doublure/endpaper options.

Ideally suited to those with some experience of binding.

Tools and Equipment

Tools and equipment will be provided. (We can supply a list of suppliers for those who wish to buy tools afterwards. Some of these are given on our
Links page.) The courses will be held in our recently restored and refurbished bindery.

3-day courses in 2017
Residential (single with en-suite bathroom) - £495
Sharing (or in single room without bathroom) - £435
Non residential £380
(to include Thursday evening meal and lunches each day)

2-day courses in 2017
Residential (single with en-suite bathroom) - £355
Sharing (or in single room without bathroom) - £315
Non residential £285
(to include evening meal on first day, if wanted, and lunches each day)

For 3-day courses in 2018:
Residential (single with en-suite bathroom) - £499
Sharing (or in single room without bathroom) - £440
Non residential £390
(to include Thursday evening meal and lunches each day)
An additional materials charge of up to £20 may be applied to these courses.

Prices include tuition, all meals and accommodation.
If you would like further information about our secure payment system, please see our booking and payments pages. Deposits can be paid online to reserve your place, although please be aware that as places are strictly limited (and online bookings are not monitored 24/7, your booking is not confirmed until we have confirmed it by email. Should you make a booking for a course that has reached its maximum number we will advise and, of course, make a refund of a deposit if there are no other courses that are of interest.)