Bookbinding Basics: Making a Perfect Bound Notebook | Caleb Sylvest | Skillshare

Bookbinding Basics: Making a Perfect Bound Notebook

Caleb Sylvest, Designer, Developer, Maker of Things

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8 Lessons (49m)
    • 1. Project Introduction

    • 2. Materials & Tools

    • 3. Choose & Cut Paper

    • 4. Glue & Split Textblock

    • 5. Fold & Cut Endsheets

    • 6. Attach Endsheets & Tape Spine

    • 7. The Cover

    • 8. Run Amok

20 students are watching this class

About This Class


Learn the art of book binding! In this online class we will learn the techniques and process of making a one-of-a-kind handmade notebook. The course will cover the nitty-gritty details of taking raw materials and forming them into a functional book, as well as covering tips on craftsmanship and production.

Making Perfect Bound books is a great way to enter the world of book binding because, compared to stitching methods, a Perfect Bound book requires less material, unique tools, and can be completed between 30 minutes and an hour. Crafting Perfect Bound books is an excellent way to make gifts for friends, for personal use, and even to start a business!

Why Book Binding?

So, you're probably thinking book binding sounds like an unusual hobby. Well, you're right! After all, we live in an industrial society where every item we use is mass produced; and while a handmade has become a novelty, most people would never consider making their own books. That's why I want to invite you to join the cool kids! This class is for anyone with a sense of adventure and lover of learning. I will teach you the skills to create excellent quality Perfect Bound books, become better craftsman, and have fun along the way.

Next Steps!

I have been making and selling books for years, producing a variety of binding styles, but Perfect Bound books are my bread and butter. I want to share my expertise with you, and hopefully have fun too! I want to make the course easily accessible to all, and just as easy to recoup the cost (and more) when you venture to sell your first book!

What You Will Learn

  • Materials & Tools. We will cover materials and tools needed, where to find them, and brands and tips to keep an eye out for.
  • Process. We will cover the step-by-step instructions of making a handmade perfect bound notebook.
  • Tips & Tricks. Throughout the class we will talk about tips to improve craft, work more efficiently, use our tools better, and be awesome!
  • Ideas & Alternatives. We will discuss alternative ways to make books, materials to use, and how to make things new and exciting.

Materials We Will Need

We will need to gather some materials to produce a book. Below you will see a general list of the materials, we will cover the material list in more detail at the beginning of the class.

  • Cardstock Paper
  • Chipboard
  • Glue
  • Decorative Papers
  • Duct Tape or Masking Tape
  • Double-Sided Tape Roller
  • X-Acto Knife & Blades
  • Metal Ruler
  • Pencil







What People Are Saying

great class! very clear and simple. I've worked with other binding techniques, but this one is faster, uses less materials.. and the end result is just as good. Thanks! –Jose Stramucci

Caleb's instructional videos are easy to follow and he shares great tips along the way. I also notice that he's been answering a lot of the student questions, which I think is just great. I found it helpful printing out his "Handmade Perfect Bound Notebook" png and taking/adding notes to it as I watched the videos. –Alexis Trono

A nice, quick and easy introduction to making perfect bound notebooks. –Anders Kvist

If you're not a crafty person don't let it get in the way of taking this course! I am horrible at crafty things but with Caleb's excellent instruction, insightful tips, and excellent course pace, even I was able to build this awesome notebook that I am fiercely proud of. The value is also amazing. Caleb provides a lot of cool tips that can be used in ways other then book binding. I was shocked when I learned I had been folding paper wrong my whole life. I'm glad I took this course and look forward to more classes ( Advanced book binding please!) Joshua Hodges

I really enjoyed this class very much. Caleb offers a class that's easy to understand, he explains all the steps one at a time - you sit there with a pile of paper and within a few hours you have made a book out of it! The tools you'll need are simple things and Caleb gives you a detailed list in the beginning of the class (makes shopping for these items really easy). I would definitely recommend this class, it's real fun! –Pamela Kultscher


Featured Student Project

Earthbound Notebooks by Wesley Johnson

An excellent set of books, crafted and illustrated by Wesley Johnson. The set revolves around his favorite SNES game Earthbound.