Book Arts Basics LogoONLINE CLASS

Instructor: Susan Campbell

Date of the class: Sunday, April 11, 2021

Time of the class: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm (Alaska Time)

Japanese Stab Binding Location: Online Zoom Meeting

Northwoods Book Arts Guild, in partnership with the Folk School Fairbanks, is excited to offer BOOK ARTS BASICS SERIES 2- SEWN BINDINGS. In this series, we offer an introduction to three structures of sewn bindings that add distinctive visual elements to the character of each book. The three classes in the series are: Japanese Stab Binding with Susan Campbell on April 11; Wrap Around Binding with Laurel Herbeck on April 25; and 1-, 2-, and 3-Section Bindings with Margo Klass on May 2.

Tortoise Shell Binding is one pattern in the rich tradition of Japanese Stab Bindings that began over 2000 years ago. In this online workshop, participants will make a model to learn the tortoise shell stitching technique and then create a soft-covered journal with a text block of blank pages. Students will learn how to measure and cut a window in a cover, assemble and prepare covers, end sheets, and a text block for stitching, and then bind it all together with waxed linen thread using a tortoise shell pattern.

Students will receive pre-cut papers for covers, end sheets, and text blocks, waxed linen thread, a needle, MacTac strips, and binder clips, along with PDFs of comprehensive directions, diagrams, and measuring guides.

Japanese Stab BindingBasic Tool Kits are available for loan from the Northwoods Book Arts Guild if you do not have the following tools. Kits have a retail value of $100. A $50 deposit is required to check out a kit (please bring cash or check to the kit pickup).

Students will need to have the following tools:

  • cutting mat, 18 x 24” or larger
  • cutting knife and blades (eg: X-Acto)
  • bone folder
  • scoring tool
  • awl
  • two rulers: 2” wide x 18” long (metal edges are handy, if you have them)
  • scissors
  • pencil and eraser
  • small hammer or mallet
  • small pair of pliers is helpful
  • scrap of wood, 5”x9”, to use to protect table surface when piercing holes

Materials pickup: Pickup for materials kits and loaner tools will be at the NBG Studio (Suite 205, 3550 Airport Way) on Wednesday, April 7th, 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm.  Masks must be worn in the studio. Contact the instructor to make an appointment for a pick up at another time.

Scholarships are available. See the Northwoods Book Arts Guild website at for details and to apply.

Japanese Stab BindingZoom meeting details: You’ll need to download the Zoom app on your favorite device. A couple of days before class, you’ll receive an email with the Zoom link. Please review the information on our Using Zoom for Online Classes and Meetings page to make sure you have the resources necessary to successfully and satisfactorily participate in such a class before you sign up.

Maximum number of students: 12

Minimum number of students: 5

Age range: 18 and up

Prerequisites:  Basic knowledge of book arts materials and tools is recommended. Contact instructor with questions about whether this class is right for you.

Cost: $40

Materials fee: $10

Contact: Susan Campbell:

Pre-registration: This class is pre-registration only. Please register by April 6th. Registration will be closed after this time. For out-of-town folks, you must register by April 1st to allow for shipping. Loaner tools cannot be shipped, so out-of-town students will need to provide their own tools – see tool list above. The other materials, including papers, thread, etc. can be shipped.



REGISTER for all 3 Book Arts Basic 2 Classes


Are you interested in this class, but can’t take it? Tell us why!
Is the reason financial? We have scholarships available.