The Joys of Sewing Text Blocks

 

In the process of a series of 12 books. 4 more sewn last night, I’m very excited! Six of these books will be 100% cotton laid paper. From personal experience and speaking with other bookbinders, the sewing of text blocks and attaching of headbands are the most labor intensive (IE the least fun) part of the process, and are the hurdles we binders seem to have to jump in order to get to the fun parts of the process.

Taking an hour to turn a stack of folded paper with holes poked through each signature into the recognizable text block of what will become a full book is however extremely rewarding, and I have noticed that others who bind will frequently post photos of their text blocks with a sense of pride, having actually finally done the necessary work (frequently poking their fingers in the process).

One does run in to snags and snares, even when being quite careful in the process. After three hours of sewing, I took a pause, and when I resumed I accidentally brought my string outside rather than through my frame  which cause the situation above.

With the blood drawing pokes, the snags, and the attention to detail necessary to complete the task, it can be quite an intense process.

Especially when you’re watching the SuperBowl at the same time.