FBAC Bookbinding Certificate (needs images)

FBAC is pleased to Offer a basic bookbinding certificate for those students who wish to take their learning to another level.


Our basic bookbinding certificate consists of a core of five classes (Bookbinding 1, 1.5, 2, 3, and 4) and then four electives (totaling at least 16 hours of additional study) which may be chosen by the student from our electives list. This certificate should be completed in three years (from the start of the first class counted in the certification). After that time, our bookbinding staff will assign the student a final "exam" to complete a bookbinding project of their own.


Bookbinding 1

This class is a perfect fit for any aspiring bookbinder. Learn 5 basic structures that are

foundational for making your own books. We will be making a variety of structures,

including a single-section pamphlet stitch, two versions of one-page folded books, and

accordion, and a Japanese stab. We will cover basics such as paper grain, folding and

stitching, and we will discuss how to use these basic forms to make your own variations.


Bookbinding 1.5

Bookbinding requires careful attention to detail and a solid understanding of how the materials will work with one another. In this advanced beginner class, participants will learn critical skills such as equipment safety, handling book cloth, recognizing the grain of paper and book board, gluing out methods (for paper and book cloth), paste making, and cutting down paper for books. We will learn vocabulary terms, and practice basic skills which will enhance further learning of the craft. During our second session, we will be binding a lovely hardcover book. Students will take home a handmade hardcover book and a tool kit filled with essentials for any budding bookbinder.

Bookbinding 2

This second-level class gives class participants an opportunity to acquaint themselves with several sewing methods. Focused on sewing signatures, students learn to use a sewing frame, sew on tapes, sew on cords, and sew the French-web sewing method. We will explore how to use the tools of the bindery which includes a lying press, nipping press, board shear, and guillotine. Books will be cased in paper. 

Bookbinding 3

The flat back book is a great introduction into casing-in a text block. The textblock is sewn, then consolidated with adhesive and a series of spine linings. The case (cover) of the book is constructed separately, and the textblock is glued into it. Similar to most commercial hardcover books, the process is mechanized and quick. There are many variations of the case binding. Cases can be covered in cloth, paper, or leather—or a combination of materials (in quarter-and-half-variations). For the purposes of this class we will opt for a flat-back to familiarize students with the process of casing in, less the more advanced methods (rounding the textblock with a hammer).  This class provides a foundational step to the rounded back book. 


Bookbinding 4

The rounded back cased-in book combines all the skills of the previous core classes in one book form. Students will use sewing frames, prepare text blocks, line the spine, and case-in their books all while simultaneously using bindery equipment.  Rounding the text block is a newest addition to their skills in bookbinding, and will the the focus of this particular class. 


Elective classes


Coptic Books

Pamphlet/Single Stitch


Simple Leather Notebook


Star/Carousel books


Flag Books

Map books

Box making

Japanese Bindings

Japanese Stab (and hardbound)

Stick-bound book

Paste Paper 

Altered Book

After the completion of the basic Bookbinding certificate, students will have the opportunity to explore further bookbinding within the area of leather bindings. Watch for this next exciting chapter.