Written & Printed

January will be spent sewing copies of The Kelmscott & Doves Presses, and putting them into cases. Much of December was spent figuring out the fussy details and painting the papers that will cover the boards.

Because the book has such a large page, but is not terribly thick (it's 28 printed pages, seven folios), I was concerned that it might be bendy across the horizontal. I was also concerned that the size of the boards might make them tend to bow as they dried (a little concavity can be tolerated, but not too much, and certainly not any convexity). Too often books are bound (cased) with boards that are too thick - one should use the thinnest boards possible. To avoid the warping problem, I got thin boards and laminated two pieces together, making them more rigid. This and a well-lined spine solved the issue of bendy books.

The board papers were painted with two layers of acrylic wash, black over a metallic blue base. The endpapers were stained with a diluted pearlescent white.

The two sample leaves were adhered to hosho hinges and sewn in, leaving them secure and easily turned to view both sides.

While I was figuring out the cases, Martin charged ahead and got all the calligraphy for the 20 "Written" copies completed. The title and opening pages are shown at the top of this post. The pages he completed by hand look simultaneously exactly like the printed versions (because the lettering is the same), and entirely different (because they're written, not printed). There really is nothing like having original calligraphy combined with type on the printed page.

The Written copies are now with Claudia Cohen, and will be getting bound up over the next few months. I'll be holding off issuing copies until all are ready, but a few of the "Printed" ones (i.e. cased at HM) will be on hand with booksellers at the upcoming book fairs in Pasadena, Oakland and New York. There will also be a special copy on display with Vamp & Tramp at Codex, containing a copy of the title page written out by Martin.

Anyone interested in reserving a copy of the book should contact one of HM's regular booksellers listed at the top right of this blog.


Scrooge Calligraphy

We were out walking around the beach yesterday, enjoying New Year's Eve. On the way back to the car we happened to walk by the home of a famous calligrapher (who shall remain nameless). He is widely known for his kindness & twinkly personality, so we were surprised to see the scroogey declaration hung along the second level. I'm sure it was done with a sense of mischief (like some of the cheeky For Sale/Sold signs that have occasionally appeared in front of homes being flipped by speculators in his neighborhood).

This is just a placeholder, I'll get the proper January blog post up by the end of the week...