Creative bookbinding

Discover the art of bookbinding and learn different techniques to create beautifully bound books , journals, and albums.

Tutor: Marion Archibald


  • October 29th to November 3rd 2023
  • June 2nd to 7th 2024
  • October 27th to November 1st 2024

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Join acclaimed artist and bookbinder Marion Archibald for an extraordinary four-day bookbinding course. Discover a world of creativity as Marion shares her favorite techniques, from simple folded books to traditional and contemporary sewing methods, and even box-making. Surrounded by the breathtaking Scottish countryside, you’ll immerse yourself in a fun and creative environment, learning new skills and making lasting friendships.

Marion’s passion for bookbinding stems from her love of nature and repurposed objects. She believes in making bookbinding accessible to all, without the need for expensive tools. By the end of the course, you’ll have a collection of unique and usable books, perfect for sketching, journaling, or gifting, along with the skills and tools to continue your bookbinding journey at home.

The course in detail

The four days are loosely planned as follows, but allow time to explore different options and ideas for making books.


Folded, cut and folded, and simple, sewn books. On the first day you will learn about paper grain and good practice for folding paper and card. You’ll discover how to make lots of simple book structures and find out how they can be used to make interesting, fun and stylish books. You will learn how to create a hard-back cover for your books using decorative papers and clothes.

You’ll learn how to sew simple pamphlet books and build on that technique using decorative stitches. We’ll finish off the day making a single-section hard-back book using the sewing and covering techniques you learnt throughout the day.


Japanese Stab Binding – developing your skills folding and sewing books, you will make several small notebooks using different Japanese stab sewing techniques. You will also make a hard back wrap around cover for your books using book cloth, decorative papers and a learn how to add a decorative closure.

We’ll also create books using exposed bindings such as French linking, Coptic and long stitch using leather.


Making a hard-back book. Using techniques that touch on traditional book binding, you’ll learn to sew a book block, round the spine, add headbands and a marker ribbon and attach the block to a hard case that’s covered with decorative paper and book cloth.


Making boxes for books – make a hard slipcase for your hard-back book. You will learn the technique for making the box strong and cover it in book cloth.

The final part of the course is over to you! Using any of the materials available, take time to practice your favourites and hone your book-making skills; be creative and have fun!

Your Course Tutor: Marion Archibald

Marion Archibald lives outside Perth and has studios in Thornton, Fife.

Marion studied Fine Art Photography at Glasgow School of Art, making her own sketchbooks to record her creative process. Many of her books now incorporate historical photographic techniques.

Since graduating Marion has delivered workshops for The Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour; the Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh; St Andrews University and is a visiting tutor at Glasgow School of Art. She also completes commissions for other artists and creative organisations.

You can find out more about Marion and her work via her website and Instagram.

Register now