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Po Box 193216
San Francisco, CA

A close-knit group of hand bookbinders, with shared interests in creating and collecting fine bindings, joined together to promote hand bookbinding and related book arts and to exchange information and ideas. 

Full 2016-2018 Workshop Listing



With this year we are taking a different approach to workshops. We will offer workshops as part of a curriculum that we are divided into the following categories: Structures, Decorations & Design, Conservation and Repairs, Tools: Maintenance and Making.  Each year we will try to offer at least 1 class in each category/section.


SCHOLARSHIPS: As a member organization which includes binders of all levels, we strive to create space for everyone to learn new skills and applications. To apply for a scholarship CLICK HERE and fill out the PDF form. Details of the scholarship are included at the top of the form.  



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Two Semi-limp Parchment Binding Styles

Instructor: Ann Hillam
Dates: March 19-23, 2018
Location: 1890 Bryant St Studio, San Francisco CA 94110

Much research has focused on limp parchment bindings, resulting in a clear terminology used to describe these structures. This class will focus on the relatively less-researched genre of bindings referred to as “semi-limp”. On its surface a simple structure, this style of binding presents many quandaries for researchers and conservators. The lines between semi-limp and stiff-board bindings can be blurry at best, and even the task of compiling a consistent vocabulary to describe them is far from straightforward.

Instructor Bio: Anne Hillam is a book conservator in private practice providing consulting and conservation services for institutions and individuals in New York City and Western Massachusetts. She has been in the field for more than twenty-five years, specializing in the conservation of books and paper artifacts, with a strong interest in parchment bindings. Anne acted as Head of Conservation at the New York Academy of Medicine’s Gladys Brooks Book & Paper Conservation Laboratory from 2007–2012, where she also held positions of Conservator and Senior Conservator of special collections. She is currently a contract conservator in the Barbara Goldsmith Conservation Laboratory at New York University. Anne is a Professional Associate in the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (AIC).

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‘Clip-on-cover Binding’

INSTRUCTOR: Kathy Abbott
CLASS DATES: Feb. 10 - 11, 2017
LOCATION: 1890 Bryant Street, San Francisco, CA

You will learn how to make a –  one of the structures devised by Kathy Abbott – on a blank book. This paper-covered binding is fully reversible, uses no adhesive, and is perfect for making at home with limited tools or equipment.  Variations in the basic technique and other materials such as vellum, textiles or leather could be used - the possibilities are endless!

Kathy Abbott is a founder member of the group: Tomorrow's Past and is the author of Bookbinding: A step-by-step guide, published by the Crowood Press in 2010. Kathy Abbott served a four-year apprenticeship in bookbinding and then gained a Higher National Diploma from the London College of Printing, London followed by a BA (Hons) degree in Bookbinding from Roehampton University, Surrey. She teaches advanced level Fine Binding at the City Lit, London, short courses at West Dean College, Chichester and conducts many other workshops across the UK and overseas.

Biblio Tech I & II

INSTRUCTOR: Karen Hanmer
CLASS DATES: April 24-28, 2017
LOCATION: San Francisco Center for the Book

Students will create ten (10) small binding structure models. These models will remain unfinished so the sewing and board attachment are visible for future reference. A handout will be provided giving a rough outline of the steps to create the models made in class. Structures include: Tacketing of a thick single signature into a leather wrapper, Crossed Structure, Sewn Boards, Laced-on boards, German Case Binding with double fan adhesive text block, Ethiopian, Medieval, Colonial American Scaleboard, Split-Board, Non-Adhesive Paper Case.

Decorations & Design



INSTRUCTOR: Tracey Rowledge
CLASS DATES: Feb. 1 - Feb, 3rd, 2017  (Wed. Thu. Fri).
LOCATION: San Francisco Center for the Book, 375 Rhode Island Street, CA 94110

Gold tooling on paper bindings is particularly exciting as it allows you to explore ideas without the financial pressure or time constraints you might feel when binding leather-bound books. Techniques of gold tooling on paper learned in this workshop will be useful in paper decorations as well.

Tracey Rowledge studied Fine Art at Goldsmiths’ College, London, and Fine Bookbinding and Conservation at Guildford College of Further and Higher Education, Surrey, UK. She is a member of the independent artists group 60|40, which she founded in 2008 with Clare Twomey and David Clarke. The aim of 60|40 is to expand the environment and opportunities for the applied arts. Tracey is also a founding member of Tomorrow’s Past: an international bookbinding collective whose aim is to encourage an alternative and modern approach to rebinding antiquarian books.


Tools: Maintenance & Making

We are currently negotiating with 2 well known instructors for a tool making class and tool maintenance in 2018. Please stay tuned and let us know if you have suggestions.

PROPOSED WORKSHOP OfferingS for 2018 and Beyond

From Collagraph to Book, Maria Pisano Instructor
Manipulating and Altering Leather, Coleen Curry Instructor
Restoration and Repairs, Anne Combe Dachs Instructor
Inno­va­tions in Fine Edi­tion Case Bind­ing, Craig Jensen of BookLab II