Looking at innovating books & binding

So i’m struggling for ideas how to bind my actual book together. The cover is all done and tested which works perfectly, so now I have to start thinking of how to make it into an actual book. I would like to incorporate the metal meshing I bought from B&Q into the book somehow. I was going to put it on the front cover originally but decided that it took away from all the scratches and paint on the cover. So decided against it. Maybe I can use that as a book cover? I dont know yet, i’ve got to experiment a bit more.


So I decided to take a trip into the library, specifically thr Artist’s book section to take a look at all the most innovative and wonderful books on display. To give me ideas and also to possible inspire me for binding techniques.


I picked out a few of the ones I like and i’m going to explain why I liked them.



First up is this book. I dont know the name of the author… or even what it’s about, but I like the fabic, soft cover. Something new that you dont usually see in books which is why I picked it out. On first impressions I thought it was a childrens book due to the bright colours and fabric wrap around cover. That is why I picked it up.


It is literally as simple as a peice of fabric wrapped around and stapled onto the hard cover book case hidden inside. I love the simplicity and originality.



You can see the staple on the right hand side here, east to make and very effective.


It drew my attention which is why I picked it up. Surely that is the sign of a good book?



Next on the list is this book called ‘Witness’ by Susan Hiller. it drew my attention as it’s fairly similar to mine… metal covered book. Hopefully this book will help give me ideas on binding my book.




This book feels really unique and exclusive. It feels like it has been made for you, rather than mass produced. I like that, I like the idea of making a one-off book. I also like the personal touch of including a DVD disk inside. I haven’t looked at whats on the disc, but I presume it’s some context about the book. Love it.




Pages open fairly flat too which I like!




I like this stitching and binding combination alot! I dont know what it is, may have to go and ask Andrew. I dont think it will be strong enough to support my book though.


Next up is this awesome little pocket book that I think is the most innovative and original of the ones I have taken a look at. It is a book labelled ‘Manilla one liner’, the book consists of a number of envelopes, all empty. Except the last one which has a piece of paper in this open envelope with  a single drawn pencil line. Love it.



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This was a really fun book to look at. It is all about Indian paintings from 1800’s to the 1930’s. It is held in a small cardboard box which is home to the actual book as well as a few big posters of high quality paintings. I really like the idea of having a protective sleeve/lift away box. That is what I have planned to do with my metal plates.




The book itself is nothing particularly original, it’s just a normally bound book. But the way it’s packaged and housed is why I picked this book up off the shelf.



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I had to pick up my new favorite book in the world. The pig book. I really love this book as it seems to not take itself too seriously. What I mean by that is, its fun and original quirks, they’re deliberate but I love them. The colour of the wrap around, the tag in the spine of the book and the content inside make this an awesome book to pick up. I also really like the title ‘pig 05049’.



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I love how they have tried to make it into an actual pig with the plug in the spine and the branding style print on the back. 100% my favorite of the ones I have looked at.


It seems like a weird reason to pick this book up, but I picked it up because of the cheap paper cover. I wanted to see what was inside and see if the content inside was also cheaply made or if it was a spoof. Once inside I also was interested to the binding and way of opening the book.




There are two little clips that you twist round in order to open up the rest of the book, if you want to take the pages out that is. You can look at it normally, but it bends the pages and you cant see the whole page. I really like this idea and love how well it is executed.


Nice close up of the stitching used.




I picked this up due to the obvious ‘has someone felt their passport here’ thought. The idea of using a passport as a basis to make a book is brilliant and original. I wasn’t expecting to see what I did inside. It also feels realistic like it is an actual passport. Really cool design and idea!



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This book really interested me as a result of the rings binding the whole book together. I was toying with the idea of using this meathod for my own book, but couldn’t find and rings that could be re opened anywhere. This just shows exactly what I was looking for. I could bind my book this way if I find some of these rings, though it would have to be quick as i’m getting really close to the deadline.



The use of single images really makes you spend time looking through the images rather than just skimming through like you would a normal book. I really like this and I may use single images for my book.


All the books I have chosen were chosen because they were original and they all stand out. I want my book to be exactly that. I dont want to make something that will blend in with the other boring books on the shelf. I want to make a wacky book that screams ‘READ ME’. These books have helped me acknowledge and solidify this and have given me more ideas about how to hold it all together.

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