Wednesday, October 10, 2012


I just finished up a pretty interesting bookbinding project. A set of flashcards, printed on 2mm thick pressboard, flush to edge on one side, to be bound together in some way. The cards are just stunning - they are from B.Impressed, a wonderful letterpress shop in the Boston area. Flashcard Book After thinking about this project for a looooong time, I decided the best way to handle this would be a hybrid accordion/flag binding. I could use the front of each card for attachment since the type/text did not go flush to edge. I chose a mid-weight Canson paper in a red to match the printed type. Bits I created a small (5mm) accordion pleat to use as a hinge on each of the cards. I then wrapped the remaining paper around the outer (2mm) side of the board, working it tightly, before crafting the next hinge. Each fold was carefully measured and scored before being adhered to the next image. This added a little bit of bulk to the spine edge of the book, but not excessively - it allows the book to open quite nicely, it almost "rolls" open. Round I wanted to avoid any extra torque or pull on the paper hinges, so once the boards were all together I went in on the back of the spine and glued the back-hinges together as well. This served to stabilize the whole thing a bit more - it wasn't as Slinky®-esque. I finished the whole thing with slightly oversized black cloth-covered boards and adhered the frontispiece to the cover. Completed You can see in that final image that the red on the spine does not go flush to edge. The original boards were not cut flush - the sizes varied by about a millimeter in any/all directions. Rather than trim them all down, I opted to use them as is, and bring the hinge mechanism in from the edge by a hair. I'm pleased with how it came out. I feared that doing it flush would show any inconsistency more than deliberately working with the inconsistencies. I'm satisfied with how this came out! I did a lot of thinking about exactly how to tackle this project - it was a great problem-solving project (which I love!) and it was nice to come up with a solution combining different bindings and solutions.


  1. This is so great. It's made a gorgeous book. Much better than the flash cards we use.

  2. Instead of using flashcard by hand, why don't you try using digital flashcards? I have been using Superflashcard apps: It has many convenient applications, with great database. You can create your own flashcard and share it to your friends. I promise definitely that you will feel satisfied with this app.