How long will it take?
Turnaround times vary depending on the complexity and volume of the order and how busy the studio is. For a one-off book, it’s usually best to leave at least two weeks between the delivery of all materials and collection. For busy times like the degree show deadline, it’s advised to get in touch a month and a half before to make sure all materials and processes will be suitable, allowing us to make sure there are no problems holding up the order.

Do you do rush orders?
If we are able to prioritise your order to meet your required timeframe, a €75 rush order fee will apply. This will be invoiced once we confirm if it is possible.

Do you have minimum or maximum orders?
Orders of between 1 – 200 books are accepted.

Can you bind a book in my fabric/material?
Maybe – if you have a material in mind it’s necessary to send a sample ahead of time to make sure it will work with the adhesives and equipment. Fabrics shouldn’t be very thin or have an open weave, as the glue can strike through and leave a mark. Thinner fabrics may need to be backed and I can advise on this process or undertake it for an additional fee.

How much will a custom book cost?
There are a lot of factors that affect the price of a bespoke book, and as every book is different it’s very difficult to give a set price before we know the materials, structure and finish. Once we know these we’ll be happy to provide a quote for everything before undertaking work.

Do you do book repairs?
I am able to assist with book repairs. For any repair jobs, you are welcome to send me images of the book you wish to repair. Repair jobs are quoted at an hourly rate. As the degree of repair needed is sometimes not apparent until work starts, the price will be an estimate and is occasionally subject to change. On this occasion, you’ll be contacted before work starts to let you know if it’s going to be higher than the estimate.

What sort of binding do I need?
This will depend on several factors, and for more information you can look on the previous projects page of the website. Books of a small page count (up to 30ish) can be bound as a single section.
Books with pages larger than A3 would be best bound as single pages, as printing about A3 is often very expensive. Section sewing is the strongest and most durable method. We’ll use the content of the book as a starting point, and I’m happy to bind formats other than A sizes.

Can you bind single pages?
Binding in sections generally gives the best result, but when this isn’t possible we can bind single pages using several methods.

How do I set up my print file for section sewing?
A book printed in sections will need to have a final page count that is divisible of 12 or 16. This is because each print is folded in half to make 4 pages. Generally, a section will have 12 or 16 pages, depending on the structure and paperweight. 3 sheets of paper will make 12 pages, and 4 sheets will make 16. Before going to print, you can email with your final page count and we can advise on how to split your file into sections.

Can I do an internship with you?
At the moment the studio is unable to offer internships or work placements. If you’re looking to learn about bookbinding you can come along to a workshop.

Acid-free paper: is paper that if infused in water yields a neutral or basic ph (7 or slightly greater). It can be made from any cellulose fibre as long as the active acid pulp is eliminated during processing. It is also lignin- and sulfur-free. The acid-free paper addresses the problem of preserving documents and preserving artwork for long periods. Why is this important? Read more here.

Boards: The stiff material commonly referred to as the covers. Boards were historically made of wood, but most modern binders use cardboard.

Book Cloth:  is specially prepared cloth material used as a covering material for book covers. A thin, woven cloth (like muslin) that has been dyed, filled, impregnated or coated with some compound, and subjected to heat and pressure.

Case Binding: This is a method of binding in which the bookcase (cover) is made separately from the text block and later attached to it. (As distinguished from leather bindings where the cover is assembled on the book.)The text block is attached to its case by means of super hinge endsheets, and an adhesive.

Endpage: These are the papers that are glued to the inside front and inside back covers of a bound book. High-quality traditional books may feature ornate endpapers, for example, marbled papers. These can also be left as blank pages, an ideal location for an author’s signature. 

FSC Certified: If a product, like a piece of tropical hardwood patio furniture, is labelled as “FSC Certified,” it means that the wood used in the product and the manufacturer that made it met the requirements of the Forest Stewardship Council.

Grain Direction: refers to the direction in which the majority of the fibres in a piece of paper or board are aligned and to the direction in which the warp threads run in cloth. The grain direction in all man-made materials used in bookbinding should run parallel to the spine of a volume.

Half bound: A binding style in which the spine and a small portion of the sides of the corners of a book are bound in one material and the sides are covered in a different material.

Headband: A decorative band, usually coloured, which originally protected the top and bottom edges of the spine but in modern books is strictly decorative. The band can be plain or coloured and was originally worked over leather, cord, or rolled paper.

Joint and Hinge: The joint is the exterior element where a board joins the spine and bends when opened. The interior side is the hinge, which can be covered in endpapers.

Leaf:  A single sheet of paper or parchment that comprises one page on the front side (recto) and another on the back (verso).

Marbled Paper: Marbled papers are highly decorative papers, often used in bookbinding (particularly for endpapers), which are made by floating colour pigments onto the surface of an aqueous solution (“size”) in a shallow bath, perhaps swirling the colours into a pattern (whether regular or irregular in nature) and then dragging paper through the bath so that its surface picks up the floating pattern. The final dried sheet is often very attractive, sometimes even including metallic gold or silver pigments. Some of the resulting patterns often resemble natural patterns found in stone and marble, hence the name. The handmade process can make each sheet of marbled papers totally unique, however, it can also make it expensive compared to the traditionally printed paper.

Page : One side of a sheet of paper. Sheets x 2 = # pages in a book.

Perfect Binding: is the type of binding used for paperback books i.e. all pages are thermally glued into the book (also sometimes sewn too). All the pages and the cover are cut perfectly flush with each other. The cover is made from one piece of card.

Quarter Binding : is a style of binding where the spine of a book, and a strip of the adjoining cover, is covered with a high quality or expensive material (for example leather) whilst the remainder of the cover is covered in a cheaper one, for example cloth or inexpensive paper.

Register Ribbon : is the type of slim ribbon you might expect to be bound into a diary. The Document Centre can supply bookbinding with one or even multiple register ribbons incorporated into the finished book or publication. These can prove to be extremely useful for readers of the publication so as to easily find important pages at a future date, for example replacing the need for a bookmark.

Saddle Stitched Binding : simply means that the document sheets, which are each folded in half to form 4 sides/pages, are bound together using metal ‘stitches’ (like staples) through the common fold at the spine.

Signatures/Folios : are sheets of printed pages which are folded down to then become one of the multi-page sections of a bound book or publication.

Three-Quarter Bound :  a binding style in which the spine and the majority of the sides of a book are bound in one material and a second material covers the remaining sides; also used when the spine and a large portion of the corners are bound in the same material.

Whole Binding: in contrast to quarter and half binding, whole binding (also known and full binding) is a binding where the cover is completely covered in the same material.