December 2013 – Holiday party and book swap

November 2013 – Pop Ups 

October 2013 – Field trip to Burning Bones Press with Nancy Luton

September 2013 – Calligraphy with Anne Rita Taylor

June-August 2013 – Summer projects going on

May 2013 meeting – Content in books with Nancy Luton

April 2013 meeting – Fish prints with Marjorie Silverstein and Lee Steiner

March 2013 meeting – Slip covered books with Lee Steiner

February 2013 meeting – Storybook theater with Anne Rita Taylor

January 2013 – New Year meeting

December 2012 – Holiday book swap and party

November 2012 – Rare books field trip at Rice University

October 2012 – Tacket Binding with Lee Steiner

September 2012 – welcome back

August 2012 – break

July 2012 – Bookbinding gathering

June 2012 – Dinner and Embellishments continued

May 2012: Book embellishments
Led by Anna Phillips

April 2012: Papermaking field trip
Led by Amanda Focke & Lee Steiner

March 2012: Field Trip to Burning Bones Press

Inked plate with objects & the resulting print

Inked plate with objects & the resulting print

HBAG met at Burning Bones Press(on 1518 Yale Street #1, in the Heights)
HBAG member and Burning Bones studio manager Nancy Luton showed us around Burning Bones as well as show us how to ink a plate to create our own unique book.

Master printer Patrick Masterson very kindly helped us with the press.

We used the press to make monoprints which we can incorporate into a book project – very fun!

Burning Bones Press is open for hourly studio time. Master printers are also available by appointment for assistance!

February 2012: Single Sheet Folded Books

January 2012: “NEW tips tricks and tools” for the NEW YEAR

Here are some highlights of what we shared: 

  • Book cloth tip — use Heat n’ Bond interfacing from the fabric store to adhere cloth to your paper backing, to avoid using the usual glue process
  • Measuring tip for folks who don’t like math or rulers — Brass spacer strips from the hardware store which come in different tiny widths. Keep a variety of widths around!
  • Homemade weights / squaring tools: clear acrylic boxes with bb’s (a.k.a. shot) in them
  • Drilling holes in cover boards or stacks of sheets: hand drill made by Fiskars
  • Scoring tablet – Martha Stewart’s scoring tablet – a plastic board with ridges in it, place paper on top and use a bone folder to press scores into the paper
  • Tunnel book accordion folds made easier — instead of making long accordions on the sides out of one piece of paper, use smaller pieces of M folds glued together (this can help avoid the dreaded accordion creep)
  • “Ecraft cutter” is a computer tool which cuts *your* drawing out of paper like a Cricut but doesn’t depend on their design cartridges.
  • Ink embossed drawings and writing using embossing pens and powder (and heat) – ink embossing isn’t just for rubber stamped designs!
  • Make light-weight paper into cover weight paper — use ModPodge Paper Preserver (it doesn’t stay sticky)

December 2011: Holiday party and Blank Book swap

November 2011: Field Trip to Museum of Fine Arts, Houston library to view Artists Book collection

October 2011: Book into Portfolio, by Lee Steiner

Carved flowers in pot by Anne Rita Taylor

Carved flowers in pot by Anne Rita Taylor

September 2011 : Carving a Block Print

We learned how to use a V-shaped linoleum cutter on soft block material to print in an accordion book.

We discussed how such block prints can be used inside books and on the covers.

Taught by Anne Rita Taylor.

August 2011 – Planning for 2012!
Members gathered at a local restaurant to discuss our interests and goals for 2012.

July 2011 – No meeting / Summer break

Model of French Door Double Tri-Shutter Album

Model of French Door Double Tri-Shutter Album

June 2011French Doors Artists Books

This album has two 6” x 4 ½” French door covers and a 6”x 9” back.  The sides, modified accordion folds, open outwards to 32” with various sized spaces for text, artwork, or photos. In this class we completed a black and white model. Taught by Kristin Flanagan.

May 2011 Japanese Retchoso binding

Cathy holding Retchoso book model

Cathy holding Retchoso book model

The Japanese Multi-Section Book or Retchoso is a uniquely Japanese structure. There are no Chinese prototypes for this binding, developed in the Heian Period (794-1185).

This structure was used for works of literature but apparently not used for Chinese or Buddhist texts.

When open, books sewn using this method, open completely flat.

In many ways, this binding is more closely related to western bindings than to most other Japanese bindings.

Cathy Hunt led the group in making a model of the sewing structure.

April 2011: Journey in Journaling

Journaling books and paper altering materials

We had a night filled with creativity and fun as we explore techniques for journaling and developing content/ideas for artist books.

At the meeting we bound a simple (very simple) book that then served as a workbook to try some different techniques and creative exercises, making an interesting base for writing.

We played with image transfer techniques, rubber stamping pages, watercoloring, using a plastic mesh and acrylics to create patterns and more. See more details here.

March 2011: Accordion Variations

Accordion variations led by Anne Taylor

We made an accordion book with 6 variations working on the front and back. The variations included woven card holders, a stencil, plus pockets, pop-ups, tunnel and another glued-in accordion. We also made a Book Slip Case!  Examples of accordion books were shown which used one or more of the techniques we learned. Very inspiring! See more photos!

February 2011: No meeting due to inclement weather

January 2011: Show & Share recently made books

HBAG members present at 2010 holiday party

December 2010 Holiday party, Passing of the Torch, Book Swap

In December 2010, we had a lovely party at the Museum of Printing History. We wined and dined and enjoyed a Book Swap organized by HBAG member Anne Taylor.  Our wonderful leader, Myssie Light, retired from her leadership role after 5 vibrant and exciting years, passing the torch to Marjorie Silverstein. Thanks for everything, Myssie!

A few handmade examples and commercial examples of board books.

November, 2010: Board Books

Board books are not just for kids!

You’ll discover that plenty of subjects, materials, and variations can be contained within this simple, sturdy book.

We taught two ways to make board books:  one uses hinges and a wrap-around cover, the other covers two whole pages at once and has a wrap around cover. Led by Lee Steiner, Anna Bolster and Dustin Schlain.

October 2010: Perfect Book Binding technique

At this meeting we  made two Perfect Bound books – Single Sheet & French Fold. Perfect Binding refers to the method of binding single sheets of paper by gluing at the spine.  This is a simple technique with lots of creative potential.

Led by Anna Phillips & Martha Harrell.

Piano Hinge book in red

June, 2010: Piano Hinge book structure

The piano hinge book binding style can be made with absolutely no sewing and only one glued seam!

Although some piano hinge techniques use sticks, skewers or wires as a binding technique, our version will be the purest – a binding made completely of paper.  Taught by Ping Lau and Jennifer Blake-Mahmud.

2-section book in case - profile

May 2010: Two-section book in case

This 2 Section Case Binding is a great starting point for learning about the case binding structure.  In this meeting we made a functional model of the binding and discussed future possibilities with the structure.

Led by Kristin Flanagan

accordion with envelopes outside view

April, 2010: Accordion with envelopes

This  is a great travel journal or scrapbook: there are text block sections  you can use for notes, drawings and photos, and the envelopes hold ticket stubs and other pieces of your trip. The accordion spine expands to accommodate thicker items.

Led by Kristin Flanagan with assistance from Amanda Focke.

March, 2010 : Coptic Variation

This stitch allows for multiple sections to be sewn together on to boards creating a beautiful linked pattern on the exposed spine edge.

It is also known as a link stitch. No glue needed!

This technique only uses one needle, eliminating the confusion of multiple needles. Taught by Anna Bolster & John Woods.

Tunnel accordion book in green

Feb. 4, 2010  Accordion Tunnel

A layered book which pulls up like the accordion bellows of a camera and offers the viewer a peep view into a tiny world.

Kits for this class included all materials needed to make your own accordion tunnel book and instructions for making your own. Just think of all the possibilities!

Taught by Marjorie Silverstein & Nancy Luton

Secret Belgian binding example with contrasting spine

January 7, 2010
Secret Belgian binding

Taught by Lee Steiner
Kit: $5

An interpretation of this beautiful binding structure in the text block is sewn first, and then covered boards serving as front cover, back cover and spine are laced onto the text block.

The technique for this structure was once thought lost – but it has been found! It a simple structure which looks very complex and compliments beautiful materials.

Thursday December 3, 2009

Printing with Amanda Stevenson

Thursday November 5, 2009

Make a book using at least three of the techniques we learned about this year and share it with the group.
A great evening for seeing all the wonderful ways these skills can be artfully combined!

7th Annual Houston Book Fair
Saturday, November 7, 2009

Museum of Printing History
Houston Book Arts Group members may participate and offer their book arts for sale.
Other items will include moderately priced used books to rare and collectible volumes.
The fair will provide a great variety of material for gift giving or personal enjoyment.
The working studios will also be open for a variety of demonstrations led by artists.

Star Tunnel book featuring Halloween theme

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Hosted by Anne Rita Taylor. Three layers of paper with strategic windows cut in build into a five point star shape when the book is opened fully.

The structure closes with a ribbon and band, making a lovely book or even a card for some lucky recipient!

Anne Rita Taylor has been bookbinding in Houston since 1995. Anne sells her blank artist journals under the name “ART Books;” and has been teaching in Houston for over twelve years through the Houston Area Rubber Art Stamp Society, the Houston Calligraphy Guild, and The Museum of Printing History. Anne has had her art and writing published in Somerset Studio, Rubberstampmadness, The Newsletter for the Association for the Calligraphic Arts, and “Ampersand,” the quarterly for the Pacific Center for Book Arts.

Thursday September 3, 2009

Second Annual Art Supply Swap
Back by Popular Demand
hosted by Marjorie Silverstein and Nancy Luton

Thursday, August 6, 2009
Nia for Book and Paper Artists

presented by Amanda Focke

July 2009 – NO MEETING

Longstitch journals variety

Longstitch journals variety

Thursday, June 4, 2009

presented by Lee Steiner

Exposed spine stitching reveals long threads on the spine of the book, bringing in many opportunities for embellishment. Beads along the spine? Why not?

Covers for books in this meeting were made with pre-scored folders as the base. Book artists added their choices of decorative cover papers & thread color.

Ed K. demonstrating edge gilding on a text block

Thursday, May 7, 2009

presented by Ed Kopinitz

Ed Kopinitz demonstrated the fascinating technique of applying gold leaf to the top edge of a text block.

We learned about the practical aspect of this beautiful work as a barrier to moisture and dust coming from above the book, protecting the text block.  Ed worked behind a protective plexi-glass cube to keep his gold leaf from blowing in the air conditioning breeze!

Tools such as a polishing agate for burnishing the gold leaf onto the finely sanded text block were used.

We were also treated to a hands-on demonstration of marbling the edge of a text block on all three sides.

Thursday, April 2, 2009
Annual international edible books festival

Calligraphy by Cathy Nieman

Calligraphy by Cathy Nieman

Thursday, March 5, 2009

presented by Cathy Nieman

A hands-on program will introduce participants of all skill levels to the fine craft of letter writing.
Cursive Italic Handwriting is an interesting style of writing that lends itself to journal and small book application.

Cathy Nieman is the past president of the Houston Calligraphy Guild. She has studied the craft of letter form with many international and national instructors. As an art educator, she has taught many workshops.

Book cloth beauty

Book cloth beauty

Thursday, February 5, 2009

presented by Cathy Hunt
Have you ever just searched and searched for the right book cloth for
a project? But, none could be found. Have you ever seen a fabric and
thought it would make beautiful book cloth but had no idea how to make
it so? Cathy demonstrated methods of taking that special fabric
and turning it into paper-backed book cloth. Participants created a
small sample of book cloth using a centuries-old technique that makes use of wheat paste.

Cathy Hunt an Instructional Assistant Professor and the Graduate Advisor in the School of Art at the University of Houston where she manages the printmaking facilities and programs. She teaches classes and workshops on all aspects of printmaking as well as the bookarts,
with an emphasis on artists books.  Cathy is Co-Director of the Paper and Book Intensive (PBI)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

presented by Jeffrey Ryder

An exploration in graphic design / production and other services copy shops can offer to bookbinders.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

presented by Amanda Stevenson & Ruth Downes

We celebrated the 3rd anniversary of the founding of Houston Book Arts Group!
Amanda and Ruth will guided us in the letterpress studio, printing holiday cards.

Pop-up by Bruce Foster

Pop-up by Bruce Foster

Thursday, November 6, 2008

presented by Bruce Foster

Ever wonder how those elaborate pop-up books are created?
Bruce Foster, Houston-based paper engineer behind more than 30 pop-up books
explained the process from conception to assembly in China, including a few hands-on hints on how you can make your own pop-ups!

Fun youtube videos with pop-up books!
Note how the tornado twists AND comes up at the same time.
Note how some letters change into others.
November 8, 2008  Book Fair

Example of a pin and hole book closure

Example of a pin and hole book closure

Thursday, October 2, 2008

presented by Amanda Focke

A viewing of book clasps, historic and modern, from the collection of the Fondren Library, Rice University. A brief slide show of this presentation is on-line at

Following, there was a brief hands on lesson for several book closure techniques.

We showed examples of clasps, ties and closures for inspiration and application to your works.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

The assignment is to Combine and Apply at least 3 of the techniques that have been presented at our meetings over the past two years into a book arts creation.

Zines by Anne Taylor

Zines by Anne Taylor

Thursday, August 7, 2008

presented by Anne Rita Taylor
A Zine is a self-published magazine about your interests, experiences or life events.

Instruction and hands-on creation of a Zine. Discussion of Zine design, Zine theme ideas, and reasons for Zine-making.

We wrote based on writing prompts. Handouts included: sample Zine, Zine instructions, and writing prompts.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Swapping only – not a sale!
hosted by Marjorie Silverstein and Nancy Luton

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Altered Book
presented by Ping Lau

Show and tell of altered books by members of our group. Go to these websites to see some wonderful altered books!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Flag Books with Photography
presented by Darcy Curtin

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Helvetica: The Movie
presented by Gerjuan A. Gregory

Suminagashi example

Suminagashi example

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Japanese-Style Paper Marbling presented by Anne Cheney

Suminagashi, the Japanese tradition of paper marbling, literally means “spilled ink”. In this method of decorating paper, the artist floats sumi  (ink) on the surface of still water and disperses the ink with another liquid, gently alternating the two, time and again, until a unique pattern forms.
The artist then captures the design by carefully touching paper to the water’s surface.

In the Japanese tradition, a suminagashi artist’s designs might then be passed to watercolorists and/or calligraphers. – The suminagashi marbling can be a subtle background to additional art.

Click here to watch 3 short (6 seconds each) videos:

This process is one you can easily do at home without a big expenditure for special equipment.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Letter Folds and Envelopes
presented by Joan Son

Sponsored by
The Museum of Printing History
1324 W Clay Street

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