custom bookbinding - handcrafted - blank book - journal - wedding - bound email and texts - guest book - scrapbook - photo album - diary - anniversary - clamshell box - book of shadows - rebinding

 

 

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Tedra Ashley-Wannemuehler, bookbinder



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your idea + my craftsmanship = a one-of-a-kind heirloom

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This book features copper accents and a copper pin closure forged by me from copper sheet and rod.  I enjoy metalwork and wanted to incorporate some of that into a cover design.  Whenever you have raised elements like this on a cover, it's not a bad idea to also have a custom box made for the book.  A clamshell box is excellent protection for any book.  This box is created to be extra-deep with paper-covered foam core "bumpers" on the inside of the box lid.  This allows the raised copper elements on the book cover some air space so they do not rub against the inside of the box lid.

This book went to a longtime customer of mine in Alaska.

 

two tone goatskin journal with hand forged copper accents and pin closure

 

two-tone goatskin journal with hand-forged

fold-formed copper accents and forged copper pin closure with custom clamshell box

 

- page size 8 and 1/2" wide by 11 and 7/8" tall

- lined pages of off-white acid-free paper

- about 200 pages (400 page sides to write on)

- hand-marbled endpapers

- black ribbon page marker

- cover is dark brown goatskin leather and British tan goatskin leather over binder's     board

- book has raised cords on the spine that are shaped to mimic the outline of the           copper accents on the front cover

- hand-forged fold-formed copper accents are inset into slightly recessed areas on       the front cover

- copper pin closure is hand-forged from copper wire

- all copper elements have been treated with archival Renassiance wax to help           preserve the patina

- pin closure is held in place with several leather straps riveted through the cover

- pin closure is attached to the book with a leather strap riveted to the back cover

- custom clamshell box is covered in black vellum book cloth

- box is lined with acid-free Arches cover

- lid of box had archival paper-covered foam core "bumpers" so that the raised             elements on the book cover do not come in contact with the inside of the box lid

- the exerior of the box is decorated with multiple stamps of a Celtic knot style tree of   life in copper foil

- all archival adhesives

- something like this would cost around $505 for the book and an additional $210 for   the custom box

 

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handcrafted leather journal with fold-formed copper accents and pin closure flat

 

handcrafted leather journal with fold-formed copper accents and pin closure detail

 

handcrafted leather journal with fold-formed copper accents and pin closure marbled endpaper

 

handcrafted leather journal with fold-formed copper accents and pin closure lined pages

 

handcrafted clamshell box for custom made leather book standing

 

handcrafted clamshell box for custom made leather book open

 

handcrafted clamshell box for custom made leather book with interior pads

 

This album was commissoned as a holiday gift for a family who collected Chinese Imperial dragons.  My customer requested a cover depicting an Imperial dragon reaching for a pearl.  The dragon took a few months to complete.  The dragon was carved by hand from a separate piece of binder's board and then each individual scale was cut from thin tag board and glued into place one at time on the carved dragon form.   Once the dragon was complete, it was covered with a single piece of red British book calf that was hand-pared paper-thin to take the shape of the underlying board.  More accents were added with tag board flames individuall-covered with hand-pared goatskin leather and accented with gold pigment.  An inset mother-of-pearl disc acts as the flaming pearl.

 

leather custom imperial dragon album

 

imperial dragon album

 

- page size 13 and 1/2" wide by 13" tall

- page are acid-free black Arches Cover paper

- 50 pages (100 sides to mount photos, etc. on)

- this book has an album construction with "spacers" in the spine to allow room for the thickness of the photos that will be attached to the pages later

- endpapers are decorative red paper sponge-printed with gold

- the cover is burgundy pigskin leather over binder's board and tag board

- raised stylized clouds on the front and back cover

- dragon on cover was carved from a separate piece of binder's board and covered with hand-pared goatskin leather

-dragon is accented with gold pigment

- "flames" on cover are thin tag board covered with hand-pared goatskin in yellow and orange, then accented with gold pigment

- inset mother-of-pearl disc

- all archival adhesives

- something of this complexity can cost upwards of $900

 

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intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl whole cover

 

intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl carved cover board

 

intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl flaming dragon

 

intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl flaming pearl

 

intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl spine

 

intricate leather chinese imperial dragon album with pearl red and gold endpapers

 

 

Supernatural.  The TV show.  I love it.  For those who have not seen it, the 1967 Chevy Impala that the main characters drive is an essential part of the show.  Since the main characters are brothers, they tease each other quite a bit, including calling each other "bitch" and "jerk" whenever the opportunity presents itself.  This book took ten months of scare free time to create.  At least fifty steps went into creating this book and custom clamshell box set.  Most of the time was spent creating the raised Impala (cut from many layers of thin tag board and stacked into one raised design) and covering the various parts of the car with the appropriate color of hand-pared leather.  Several types of leather were used on this cover.  The back cover features the car's red tail lights in inset red leather.  I made a custom clamshell box for this book; slightly extra-deep so that the raised elements of the front cover do not touch the inside of the box lid.

 

custom leather 1967 chevy impala supernatural journal

 

supernatural impala 1967 chevy blank book leather journal diary autograph book and clamshell box set

 

1967 Chevy Impala book and box set

 

- page size 12" wide by 6 and 3/4" tall

 - about 150 pages (300 page sides to write on)

- ribbon page marker

- blue swirl French marbled endpapers

- cover is predominantly mottled blue "antique" finish cow hide leather

- raised elements on front and back cover are carved from separate pieces of board and individually-covered with hand-pared goatskin and pigskin leather

- cover accented with silver pigment

- pewter foil stamped lettering on the license plate and the "jerk" and "bitch" word bubbles

- custom clamshell box is covered with black pigskin leather and silver vellum book cloth with the "Impala" name logo recessed on the front cover

- paper-covered foam core "bumpers" added to the inside of the clamshell box cover so that the raised areas on the book do not rub against the inside of the cover

- something like this is going to cost at least $1,400 for the set

 

 

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supernatural impala 1967 chevy blank book leather journal diary autograph book front detail

 

supernatural impala 1967 chevy blank book leather journal diary autograph book back cover tail lights

 

supernatural impala 1967 chevy blank book leather journal diary autograph book clamshell box front

 

supernatural impala 1967 chevy blank book leather journal diary autograph book in clamshell box

 

 

This intricate but small album has a modern interpretation of an Asian design on the cover.  It was made to hold a very few valuable photographs.

The style of this album was meant to mimic a very old style of cord binding.  I don't think this type of binding functions very well, so, on this book, the braided cords on the spine are completely decorative.  The grommets allow a look at the ornate yellow, green, and burgundy endpaper inside.

 

leather modern asian style album

 

small modern Asian-style album

 

- page size 6" square

 - 5 pages

- French marbled endpapers

- cover is a goatskin leather 3/4 binding with mottled brown leather front and back and dark brown leather for the spine and corners

- front cover design made from individually-covered pieces of tag board

- leather on front cover design consists of a varitey of colors of hand-pared goatskin leather

- a book like this could cost around $450

 

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intricate small leather modern asian style album detail

 

intricate leather modern asian style album flat

 

intricate leather modern asian style album marbled endpaper

 

My customer sent me a great half-sketch she did of an owl.  That was the basis for the cover of this journal. This project took several months to complete. Each color on the owl is a  different piece of individually-covered with hand-pared goatskin leather. (Happy accident; the white chest feathers mimic the shape of the crescent moon.)  A taxidermy eye was added for a very life-like effect. My customer first contacted me about this project two years prior to staring. I enjoy the long-term relationships I have with many of my customers.

 

custom leather owl journal

 

owl journal

 

- page size 6" wide by 8" tall

 - 300 pages (600 page sides to write on)

- gorgeous Claire Guillot marbled endpapers in a "bark" pattern

- cover is predominantly navy pigksin leather

- owl is covered with dark brown, black, and white goatskin leathers, all hand-pared

- resin taxidermy eye

- owl is accented with dark brown wax to accent texture

- moon and stars are stamped using hot foil stamping and silver stamping foil

- something like this could cost around $650

 

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custom leather owl blank book with night sky detail

 

custom leather owl blank book with night sky spine

 

custom leather owl blank book with night sky marbled endpapers

 

 

Created as a gift for his son, my customer wanted to included all of his son's favorite things on one cover. Quite the challenge.

Elements that needed to be included were; a wave, snow skis in snow, a surfboard in sand, a wedding ring, hunting rifles, a pheasant, and hunting dogs along with their names.  I decided that the "wedding ring" could be incorporated as the "sun" in the beach and snow scene on the front.  The wave was based on the classic Asian-inspired wave...carved from the underlying cover board and accented with silver pigment.  If you want something this complicated, I welcome the challenge; just please make sure you contact me well ahead of time.  I need about two months to complete a project like this one.

 

 

custom personalized album with wave and surfboard

  

extremely personal great wave album

  

- page size 10" wide by 12" tall

 - 50 pages (100 page sides to mount photos on)

- cover is predominantly green goatskin leather

- great wave is carved from the underlying cover board and accented with silver pigment

- "sand" and "snow" are separately-covered pieces of board, covered with hand-pared goatskin leathers

- surfboard graphics were added using a custom metal die, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foil

- surfboard and skis were both covered with hand-pared leathers in the appropriate colors

- "gold" (brass) ring was forged and soldered by me and attached to the cover in a slightly recessed area with brass wires

- raised rifles on back cover created with several layers of thin board under the leather

- raised pheasant on back cover accented with gold pigment

- hunting dogs added using a custom metal die and the appropriate color of hot foil stamping pigment for that particular dog

- names of hunting dogs added using moveable metal type, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foils 

- a project like this could cost $1,000 or more

 

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intricate leather great wave album with surfboard wedding ring skis rifles and hunting dogs 2

 

intricate leather great wave album with surfboard wedding ring skis rifles and hunting dogs 3

 

intricate leather great wave album with surfboard wedding ring skis rifles and hunting dogs 4

 

intricate leather great wave album with surfboard wedding ring skis rifles and hunting dogs 5

 

 

 

 

 

An incredibly complex binding for an entire year of an online publication for collectors of props and costumes from the Xena television series.  These pages were actually printed out in full color and oversewn on an oversweing machine which is a very durable form of sewing for individual pages.  The cover of this book features a replica, done entirely in leather, of one of the prop gauntlets from the Xena series (see the bottom photo at right for the actual gauntlet I was working from). As an added detail, the straps of the gauntlet on the cover act as a closure, lacing through riveted-on straps on the back cover.

 

custom leather xena costume and prop collector binding ephiny gauntlets

 

custom Xena collector binding 

 

- page size 8 and 1/2" wide by 11" tall

 - full-color printed individual pages sewn on an oversewing machine

- marbled endpapers

- cover is predominantly dark brown goatskin leather

- raised costume gauntet on front cover made from many individual pieces of goatskin leather over carved board

- "beads" on gauntlets are made entirely of goatskin leather

- cover is accented with metal rivets and black leather strips acting as "lacing" detail

- non-functioning D-ring closures on the gauntlet to minic the original piece

- gauntlet straps wrap around to the back cover acting as a closure for the book

- back straps lace through a riveted leather strap

- large Xena Prop House logo added to the cover using a custom metal die, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foil

- a price on a project like this can only be quoted on an individual basis

 

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custom xena costume and prop collector binding in leather with ephiny gauntlet whole cover

 

custom xena costume and prop collector binding in leather with ephiny gauntlet front detail

 

custom xena costume and prop collector binding in leather with ephiny gauntlet back detail

 

custom xena costume and prop collector binding in leather with ephiny gauntlet original costume

 

An album made as a gift for my customer's longtime friends and fishing buddies, he wanted the cover to have a surfacing Atlantic salmon.  I modified my "water ripple" design to include the carved fish.  The mottled "antique" finish of the cowhide leather on most of the cover has the look of water. The salmon's body underwater was accented with gold pigment to give it a slightly faded look, while the head is covered in bright gold foil leaf as it surfaces to go after the gold fishing fly.  The back cover features a school of trout in shades of silver and pewter.  The fish has  a resin taxidermy eye for added realism.

 

custom leather album with surfacing atlantic salmon

 

large surfacing Atlantic salmon album

  

- page size 10" wide by 12" tall

 - 50 pages (100 page sides to mount photos on)

- cover is predominantly mottled blue "antique" finish cowhide leather

- salmon is carved from the underlying cover board

- salmon accented with gold pigment

- salmon head features a resin taxidermy eye and is accented with gold foil leaf

- fishing fly added using a custom metal die, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foil

- lettering on cover added using moveable metal type, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foil

- fish on back cover added using a custom metal die, hot foil stamping, and silver and pewter stamping foils

- a project like this could cost around $900

 

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custom leather surfacing atlantic salmon album with fly fishing fly whole cover

 

custom leather surfacing atlantic salmon album with fly fishing fly gold fish head

 

custom leather surfacing atlantic salmon album with fly fishing fly gold

 

custom leather surfacing atlantic salmon album with fly fishing fly back cover

 

custom leather surfacing atlantic salmon album with fly fishing fly spine

 

This is project I did for myself.  I restored a piece of furniture made by my great-great grandfather, but which had been in severe disrepair.  (See photos at bottom right for before and after photos of the actual furniture piece).  It was a cabinet with recessed arches on the front doors.  I wanted to make a book that would stay with the refinished piece that related the history of the cabinet.  I did the page layout so that the book could be hand-sewn in signatures (creating the inside of the book is the hardest part!).  I wanted the outside of the book to look like the cabinet itself, only done entirely in goatskin leather.  I had to replace the original hardware on the cabient with slightly different antique surface-mounted hardware, but I kept the one original piece of hardware that remained from the original cabinet.  I used this piece of hardware to make a closure for the custom box.  I wanted the box to open like the cabinet did; two "doors" opening to each side.  I made very thick panels for the top of the box so that the original hardware closure could be built into the edge of the box just as it had been on the cabinet itself.  Inside the box, a paper panel has linen tape attached to it so that you can lift the book up and out.  The text of the book includes letters from my late grandmother where she referenced this piece of furniture and as much research on my great-great grandfather as I could find.  I also included photographs of my family members as well photographs of each step of the cabinet refinishing process.

 

 

custom leather family heirloom furniture record book

 

heirloom family furniture history book

and custom box

  

- page size 7 and 1/2" wide by 6" tall

- pages printed in a signature-sewing layout so that the book could be hand-sewn and the pages would lay open completely flat

- hand-marbled Italian marbled endpapers with a black and tan ripple pattern

- cover is predominantly dark brown goatskin leather over carved binder's board

- each element on the front cover is an individually-covered piece of thin board

- elements on front cover are covered with hand-pared goatskin in a variety of tan and dark brown shades

- cover design mimics the front of the actual piece of furniture that is the subject of the book

- lettering on spine added using moveable metal type, hot foil stamping, and blind stamping technique

- custom box created to hold this book

- box is covered in brown linen book cloth

- original antique hardware taken from the cabinet is set into the box lid to act as a closure for the box

- box is lined with acid-fre Arches cover

- book is removed from box by lifting up on two Irish linen tapes which raise a panel of Arches cover beneath the book

- the price of a project like this would have to be quoted on an individual basis

- please note that I do not do page layout or printing on customer's books

 

 

ex voto cabinet before refinishing

 

cabinet before refnishing

 

ex voto cabinet after refinishing

 

cabinet after refinishing

 

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custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch front standing

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch detail 1

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch 2

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch front flat

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch open 1

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch open 2

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch open 3

 

custom cloth covered clamshell box for book with antique hardware latch open 4

 

custom leather book about furniture history with ex vote cabinet front

 

custom leather book about furniture history with ex vote cabinet flat

 

custom leather book about furniture history with ex vote cabinet marbled endpapers

 

custom leather book about furniture history with ex vote cabinet book open 1

 

custom leather book about furniture history with ex vote cabinet book open 2

 

This sketchbook was made for an artist who liked to paint with very dry paints (the moisture in most paints will wrinkle paper and it is usually not a good idea to use paint on the pages of the books I make).  My customer wanted an ouroboros on the front; symbol of renewal and regeneration.  She also wanted the creature to have an anatomically-correct heart for its head.  The ouroboros was carved from a separate piece of board and the scales were cut from thin tag board and applied individually before the leather was worked down over the design.

 

custom red leather ouroboros sketchbook

  

raised ouroboros artist's sketchbook

  

- page size 12" wide by12" tall

- heavy sketch paper pages

- front cover features a hand-carved ouroboros with an anatomically-correct heart for a head and serpents wrapping around its body

- ouroboros has a resin taxidermy eye

- recessed carved infintiy symbol on the back cover

- gold lettering on the spine (not pictured) added using moveable metal type, hot foil stamping, and gold stamping foil

- a book with a large, intricate raised design like this could cost around $900

 

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custom red leather ouroboros sketchbook with eye front

 

custom red leather ouroboros sketchbook with eye front detail

 

custom red leather ouroboros sketchbook with eye back cover

 

 

This box was made to protect the ouroboros sketchbook above.  It is a clamshell box measured to fit the sketchbook precisely.  There is room inside the box for the raised design on the cover of the sketchbook and acid-free paper-covered "bumpers" inside the box lid to prevent the raised design from rubbing anywhere inside the box.  The eye of horus design was created around a "human" doll taxidermy eye; hazel-colored.  Clamshell boxes are excellent protection for books and each clamshell box I make fits the book it will hold perfectly.  The box opens completely flat so the book inside can be easily removed.

 

custom burgundy leather eye of horus box

 

eye of horus box

 

- box made to hold a 12" by 12" book

 - box is lined with Arches cover paper

- paper-covered foam core "bumpers" are inside the box lid to keep the raised design on the book cover from rubbing against the inside of the box

- edges of the box are covered with charcoal linen book cloth

- front cover of box covered with burgundy pigskin leather

- resin doll eye at center of cover

- red pigskin leather added behind the eyeball for added interest

- raised eye of horus design carved from the underlying cover board

- a box like this could cost around $445

 

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custom burgundy leather eye of horus clamshell box front

 

custom burgundy leather eye of horus clamshell box detail

 

custom burgundy leather eye of horus clamshell box open

 

custom burgundy leather eye of horus clamshell box open flat

 

This very personal journal was created for a customer who wanted to incorporate a variety of religious symbols in the cover design: the "XPI" Chi Rho (a very early christogram) on the front, the Tao curve from the yin-yang symbol running across the entier cover, the Zen circle in the center of the front cover with raidiating triangles, and a Celtic cross overlaid with a Dharma wheel on the back cover.  While my customer created the entire design of this cover himself, we did have to hammer out a few details. Originally, he hoped it would have more metal elements, but untimately, the most practical application of the metal was for the Zen circle at the center of the front cover; forged from copper wire and made to have the look of a continuous brush stroke.  A second copper Zen circle was created to act as the pull on the custom clamshell box made to protect this book.  My customer chose the color scheme (though I modified it a bit with the purple triangles on the front).  This book started with my customer's desire to have a specific paper (handmade Italian Amalfi) for the pages for use with his fountain pen.  He ended up sending me three mass-produced books with the desired paper inside which I then disassembled and re-bound into one volume.  While this project was not inexpensive, this proved to be more economical than ordering large sheets of Amalfi to cut down for the pages.

 

red leather religious symbol cover with purple goatskin and gold copper inset XPI dharma wheel mediation cross

 

life journal with a variety of religious symbols

and custom clamshell box

  

- page size 9" wide by12" tall

- italian Amalfi paper pages

- front cover features multiple religious and spiritual symbols covered in different types of leather; gold goatskin and two colors of purple goatskin

- chi rho on front cover was hand-carved from binder's board

- purple triangles are individually covered with purple goatskin leather and set into recessed areas in the cover

- back cover features several merged religious symbols; a raised design set into a recess and covered with gold goatskin

- tao curve runs across the entire cover, including the spine

- the majority of the cover is red pigskin leather

- front cover has an inset infinity circle forged from copper wire.

- a custom clamshell box was created for this book

- clamshell box is covered in burgundy vellum book cloth and features a hand-forged copper pull to lift the lid, forged in the shape of a zen circle

- a book with a large, intricate raised design like this could cost around $800

- custom clamshell box with forged copper ring pull could cost around $230

 

 

red leather religious symbol cover with purple goatskin and gold copper inset XPI dharma wheel mediation cross whole cover

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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red leather religious symbol cover with purple goatskin and gold copper inset XPI dharma wheel mediation cross front

 

red leather religious symbol cover with purple goatskin and gold copper inset XPI dharma wheel mediation cross back

 

red leather religious symbol cover with purple goatskin and gold copper inset XPI dharma wheel mediation cross clamshell box

     
     
     

e-mail contact: tedra@fineblankbooks.com

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