Forward to the book by Sandy Webster
Welcome Back, Cover To Cover!
Twenty years ago, Lark Books released Shereen LaPlantz’s first instructional book on the techniques used to make beautiful books, journals, and albums. Her enthusiasm for the world of artist books, and her willingness to share it with the rest of us, resulted in a book filled with clearly worded instructions interspersed with simple drawings and colourful samples. It was perfect timing for those of us discovering the craft of book binding and artists wanting to convey our ideas in a more creative narrative form. Cover to Cover not only inspired us to look at books with a new perspective, but it also encouraged us to “give it a try”. For many of us working in home studios, it became our first guide to information on the tools and techniques of bookmaking.
Here were all the illustrated instructions, lists of materials, and samples for us to pick & choose the book forms we wanted to make by hand. Shereen not only wanted to share all she knew about different book structures, but she wanted us to make them and think about how we could alter them to fit our own stories.
The inclusion of other book artists’ variations on these structures was undoubtedly the reason most of us couldn’t wait to own a copy. It was the first time I saw such a variety of art in book form. Shereen filled Cover to Cover with the work of book artists who started with content and built the book around it. Not only did the shape of the book change, but the materials did as well. A book about a neighbourhood actually folded out into a neighbourhood; a book about lace was made with lace; and some of the books were housed in additional structures that required more manipulating than simply turning pages. Inspired by the work illustrated in her book, we all began to ask ourselves, “What if . . .?” and found ourselves firmly entrenched in the world of artist books.
Cover to Cover by Shereen LaPlantz continues to be one of the most seminal books on the art of bookmaking – the first of its kind, and an inspiration to those who followed in her path. Sandy Webster
In this classic edition, now updated for its 20th anniversary, Shereen LaPlantz shows you how to make simple pamphlets, Japanese stab bindings, traditional codices, complex fold books, and many other bound items. More than 170 photographs will inspire you, and detailed instructions – together with hundreds of illustrations – will guide your every step. You will learn the basics techniques by making a selection of simple projects and expand your skills while exploring dozens of variations. No matter how simple or complex, your handcrafted journals, albums, and books are certain to become prized possessions for you or someone on your gift list.
I was so pleased to learn that this new edition of Cover to Cover was being released – and it is hard to believe that it was 20 years ago when this inspiring book was first released! The book covers Bookbinding Basics, Pamphlets, Basic Codex and Variations on Codex Bindings, Stab Bindings, Fold Books, Combination Books, Unusual Bindings and tips about how to present your books. This is ‘a must’ for anyone interested in creating contemporary books or displaying their work in a book format.
20th Anniversary Edition, 2015, paperback, 144 pages, over 170 illustrations, 21.5 x 25.5cm