Special Topics



Special Topics workshops are opportunities to delve deeply into key subjects that are essential to understanding how books have been crafted over the centuries.


Fore-Edge Painting & Edge Treatments
Instructors: Anna Barnes & Jill Deiss

July 28-29 (Thurs-Fri) 9 a.m. -5 p.m.



Fore-edge paintings are delightful gems found along the pages edges of bound books. This art was practiced regularly in the 18th and 19th centuries, with artists such as Watteau crafting delicate paintings hidden from view until such time as the book’s pages were properly flexed. Our system of fore edge painting does not require much artistic talent to accomplish success. The edge treatments taught will include sponging, speckling, and gilding the top edge of the text.


Book Sewing Intensive
Instructors: Susan McCabe & Jill Deiss

August 4-5 (Thurs-Fri) 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.


PREREQUISITE: Introduction to Book Restoration or New Cloth Binding Construction

Students will learn a wide variety of stitches, styles, and techniques for successful sewing and resewing of book texts. This course will feature instruction in sewing on tapes, sunken cords, raised bands, and slit thong (German-Amish style). Students will also learn to determine when damaged sewing can be repaired and how to make those repairs. Additionally, instruction will be provided on how to operate a plough for edge trimming.


Hand Papermaking
Instructors: Anna Barnes & Rowland Kirks

October 6-7 (Thurs-Fri) 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.




This class is a must for anyone interested in art, bookbinding and paper. Day one teaches traditional paper making, and Day two takes students beyond the basics into multi-layer sheets, pigmented papers, and decorative papers. Students may expect not only to learn to make paper but how to create their own paper making set ups at home.