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Learn about book structure!
Binding books evolved during a long and colorful history. In a time before machines, resourceful binders came up with uncounted ways of connecting manuscripts and covers together for ease of reading and for protective storage.

In this class, ambitious students will make several books sewn over supports. Each book will feature a new structural element, and some will be sewn on a sewing frame. You'll learn how to design your own books with the goal of understanding the relationship between materials, stitches and board attachments. The skills you learn will serve you well in either artist, historic or more traditional bindings, but class emphasis will be on artist books.

  • Preparing and using a sewing frame

  • Sewing over tapes

  • Sewing over single-support

  • Sewing over double-supports

  • Wooden and book board covers

  • Ancient, traditional and contemporary solutions to the "how do I get the covers to stay on" question

  • Making metal furnishings/hardware for books (optional, if time allows)

During the week, students will sew several stitches, explore ways of attaching covers to the text block, and learn about different cover materials and techniques. We'll sew over flat and raised supports and lace them onto boards. Learn how to shape and prepare both book board and wooden boards for attaching a text block.

You'll also learn (or review) the basics, such as; choosing and preparing tools and materials, confidently finding paper and board grain, choosing which adhesive to use under various circumstances, covering boards neatly, routing and sanding wood, safe use of power- and hand-tools, and much more.


Price $750 + $50 Materials
Quick beginner to intermediate

To sign up or to make inquiries please contact Christine Cox at:

Sewing on Supports
Instructor: Christine Cox


TBA (5 days)



  • This is the perfect class if you've been making artist books and are ready to investigate more traditional binding options.

  • Everything for all projects is covered by the materials fee, but working with sterling silver, exotic woods or similar upgrades will be extra (totally your choice).

  • * No knowledge will be assumed, though previous bookbinding experience will serve you well. The class is designed for those who have sewn a book, glued cover materials, and are ready to move on to the next step. We'll be doing all that in class, so if you're a quick learner you'll do fine, otherwise, this is not the class for a raw beginner.

  • Completely unique and unavailable anywhere but at the Volcano Arts Studio.

What to Bring (optional):

  • Journal or pad for notes

  • Magnification (I have a few OptiVisors to loan out) or really good eyes

  • That's it! It's so nice to travel without a suitcase full of expensive tools, isn't it?

The studio is perfect for binding. For inspiration, there are over 300 hand-bound journals and books nestled in amongst artwork done in other media. The large, comfortable space is visually stimulating and your creative juices will flow. I have all kinds of interesting and useful tools for making books, and I don't mind at all if the class goes in a direction different than I anticipated (within reason, and with the group's consent, of course). Even if we don't use them in your particular class, the studio is full of interesting tools and I love talking about them and about the history and techniques of bookbinding. I have tables of various heights, a guillotine cutter, sewing frames, several kinds of presses, knives, brass stamps and gilding supplies, a paring machine, and a plough. I've been a paper collector for years and I love sharing my stash to energize and spark the creativity of like-minded artists. Come up to Volcano and get energized!