The sounds of Motown are in my head, but I’m hearing R-E-C-Y-C-L-E instead of Aretha’s amazing voice and R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

I’ve been on a recycling toot ever since I learned how to sew a  Belgian secret binding from Hedi Kyle. The workshop was at Shakerag some years ago, and I seem to remember an abundance of liquor. There were a lot of cardboard beer cartons in the recycling bin, and some of us decided to salvage them and use them to try out our newly acquired bookbinding skills.

Bohemia beer carton book with Belgian secret binding

I used the Belgian secret binding again with recycled pages from an old art museum calendar.  I cut the pages into strips then wove them to make a front and back cover.

Recycled art calendar book with Belgian secret binding

For some upcoming art/craft shows, I will be selling these mini books which I made from old scratched up vinyl  45 rpm records.  For the spine and lining, I used fabrics from discarded sample books.  Some had a binding made from ultrasuede scraps leftover from previous projects. I used a simple long stitch to sew the signatures to the spine.

Handbound books made from 45 rpm vinyl records

The Captain and Tenille vinyl record handbound book

So instead of placing my beer cartons and cardboard packaging in the recycling bucket, I’ve been saving them with the intention of binding them into books.  Looks like I have some work ahead of me.

Cardboard boxes and cartons destined to become handbound books

For those of you who want to try this at home, Re-bound by Jeannine Stein has some excellent ideas and examples plus clear diagrams and instructions for your own creations.  Re-bound can be purchased here.

Re-bound by Jeannine Stein - Creating Handmade Books from Recycled and Repurposed Materials


2 Responses

  1. WOW! Your books are great. I really like the “record” books.

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