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Quick Coptic Notebook

Christopher Swingley

Introduction and Construction

[ upright view ]

upright view

I keep a notebook at work for jotting down notes, phone messages and other things that I may need to look at again. For my birthday last year I got Keith Smith's Books Without Paste or Glue and Coptic bindings looked fast and easy. This is my first attempt, and I was able to make a notebook in a few hours.

[ open view ]

open view

Coptic bindings are often used for artistic bindings because the book can open all the way until the covers touch. As a notebook that sits on my desk at work, it makes sense because it will lay flat without stressing or breaking the spine. The binding is thought to date back to the early Coptic Christians in Egypt in the early centuries of the Christian church.

The sewing is difficult to describe, but basically the thread passes out through the section, is wrapped under the threads in the section below (as you're sewing), and then threaded back into the same hole in the top section. The pattern changes somewhat for the sections next to the covers, but the thread still goes out and back of each section hole.

For this notebook I used the same long grain Mowhawk Superfine paper I've used for my other folio books. I used five sections with eight pieces of paper folded in half. That yields 160 pages in the final notebook. The covers are made from book boards. They look a bit unfinished, but it's a working notebook and I have a nice leather cover that I'll wrap around the notebook to protect both the boards, and the exposed threads down the spine.

Things I've learned

[ spine ]


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[ Page last updated 16-Apr-2006 ]