Saturday, April 9, 2011

Bookbinding with children

A weekend or so ago I fulfilled a promise I made to a friend's children who came to my January craft classes and wanted to do more book making. I said I'd have them over some time to learn how to make a coptic-bound sketchbook, so they came for a sleepover and we spent 7 absolutely intense hours making these books. The children were aged 8, 9 and 10 and they did brilliant work!

The oldest child is about to go to Switzerland for 6 months to spend time with her grandparents and attend a Swiss school, which will no doubt help her language skills and her self-confidence, so I suggested that we make wrap-around felt covers for the books because I can imagine her particular sketchbook getting damaged in her bag as she travels. We also made pockets in the books and used lots of different sorts of paper (squared paper, graph paper, pastel paper, plain paper and - fortuitously! - some pages taken from an old Swiss calendar showing beautiful photo-landscapes of mountain scenes). One of the girls has a bit of a thing about elephants and she chose a grey felt for her book cover: we used the excess felt to make two ears and a trunk, and I embroidered little eyes, a mouth and a tail on her cover so she has a really unique book!