Hand-bound books…

bookbindingIn Bendigo not long ago, I came across a bookbinding shop that is the most similar I’ve found in Australia to the one I came across in Florence (p.212 Mezza Italiana). I couldn’t resist these handmade books and the owner kindly offered to emboss my name on them.
I wrote the first draft of Joe’s Fruit Shop and Milk Bar longhand in foolscap exercise books. The pens I used were cheap, plastic biros. The ink ran out in close to a dozen by the end. Mezza Italiana also began in longhand, at the kitchen table in my family’s house in Italy. That time I wrote in several diary planners that were out of date, with similar plastic biros.
These hand-bound books are so beautiful I feel almost afraid to write in them!


Filed under books + writing, inspiration + history

8 responses to “Hand-bound books…

  1. Wow! They look amazing Zoe – I can understand your hesitation to write in them. I remember that shop from when I visited Bendigo a few years ago – they had a beautiful bookpress in the front window.

  2. They are amazing. Now, obviously, you will need a GOOD pen to go with it. Something with a refillable cartridge. One pen is all you need, forever.

  3. These are beautiful. And don’t feel bad about being afraid to write in them- I’m a bookbinder, and I never write in any of the journals/ sketchbooks I make because I can’t stand my own handwriting! But us bookbinders love when other people write in and use our books, it’s what makes them special. And unlike mass produced journals, you are using a one-of-a-kind book for your unique, one-of-a-kind thoughts. They go together hand in hand- it’s destiny 🙂

    • Hi Arielle, thank you, yes, they are beautiful. You’re right, there is something special about ‘one-of-a-kind’ books. I’m sure you must very much enjoy bookbinding as it is such a lovely craft. Thanks for the link to your website, I’ll be sure to take a look. Warm wishes, Zoe

  4. These are beautiful. I have business cards with the old note book design!

    • That’s lovely! By the way, I’ve only just recently joined Twitter and saw your tweet to me from quite a while ago… I have now replied (about a year later!)- smiling. @zoeboccabella

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