Tuesday, February 16, 2016

The Civil Wars of Spain, 1652

I realized I haven't posted anything since the new year began, and as it so happened I've kept before pictures of this particular client's books, I just took after pictures of the latest work and decided to put it up. And though it's a month and half late, a happy new year to ya' all! 

The book is The Civil Wars of Spain by Prudencio de Sandoval, (1652). The client asked for a brand new leather binding as one of the original boards was missing. The leather is dyed to make it look appropriate for the era and I chose a red skiver as it was common around the time. I used the raw flyleaf as endpapers for this binding though I normally don't do that. In case some of you aren't familiar with flyleaf, it's the blank sheets at the beginning and the end of a book. Yeah, THAT blank pages got a name just like anything else in the world. haha.. Anyway, traditionally, a book is cased-in with flyleaf as endpapers, and then, if it's preferred, endpapers are laminated onto it afterwards. 

There was a sheet of unrelated, incomplete manuscripts sewn as a part of original flyleaf on each front and back of the book, and the client asked me to take them out as he was curious as to what they were. When you take out things like this from a book, you gotta make sure to indicate where they came from, in case they are separated from the book. Or you never know what the hell they are!

By the way, to update my health status, I'm doing a lot better! Thank you! I hope it keeps getting better!


  1. Best wishes on (the rest of) your recovery MHR. Hope to see you soon back in full binding and writing capacity, your posts -and sharp&stropped sense of humor- were missed!

  2. Well said Dimitris, exactly my sentiments. You are missed.


  3. Happy New Year,M:)(I am still enjoying the Chinese New Year holiday)
    And I am so happy to know that you are getting better.
    by huhu

  4. Like everything on this site, this is beautiful work. May I ask a question? Do you do the gold stamping with hand tools? If so, any tips on lining up the lettering if more than one impression is needed? It seems impossible to me!

    Oh, yes: Happy New Year! Glad to hear your health keeps improving!

    1. You want to score the surface before laying the leaf. You can use a tip of a compass to lightly score where you want to tool. You can see it through the leaf.

      If, by any chance you have to stamp again on the same position, all you gotta do is to be careful. You can do it. ;-)

      As we don't have individual lettering handtools, I use Kwikprint or type holder handtool for lettering.

      Thanks for the compliment. :-)

  5. Thank you! I will ponder your explanation... but a video tutorial would be better (hint!)

  6. How beautiful! How can I go back to my youth and learn to do this?! Ah well, after 66 years on this earth, I still love, crave and appreciate books in any physical form. Next life, I hope I remember that learning this art could be a dream come true. Now I'll stick to what I am good at and continue to admire your work, while I ply my own minor crafts.