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Make A Miniature Book

Updated: Dec 19, 2021

"A book is a garden carried in the pocket"

Arab proverb

Twenty-some years ago I was part of a Calligraphy guild that met once a month to share knowledge and learn from one-another. One of the projects we did as a group was a miniature book that one could wear as a broach.

Since then, I made more of them and experimented using various weights of paper and different fabrics for the covers as well as some of the marbled papers produced in the shop. Such a tiny book gave me the opportunity to try my hand at small writing and some gilding.

We made them by sewing up "signatures", four leaves folded in half and stitched together. One would decide on how many pages the book would have and of course, the size, and make as many signatures as needed.

The covers are next and we used card stock and book cloth, as well as some colorful paper for the outside of the book and the end papers.

The spine of the book should be as wide as the pack of signatures is thick and the covers just a bit larger than the papers (about 1/16")

The spine is attached to the front and back covers using the book cloth, allowing about 1/32" space between the spine and the covers, the cloth extending about 1/2" onto the covers and 1/4" top and bottom, this part will be folded in. I do all this using PVA.

The papers for the outside are cut about 1/2" larger than the covers and are glued on partly overlapping the cloth (allow as much cloth to show as you like). Flipping the covers over, the corners are cut at 45 degrees and folded in and glued.

The end papers are attached to the book and they should be trimmed to be the same size as the pages. The last step is to glue the end papers inside the covers and then to put it under some weights until the glue dries.

To wear it as a broch, I insert a jump ring into the edge of the spine and a 1" length of chain and a small safety pin on the other end.

Perhaps the pictures below give a better idea of the whole process.+

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