In the process of preparing to go to PLAY for a few days I’ve bound two books, the leather wrap and The Book of Jade Faces. I’ve very satisfied with the way they both turned out but something still wasn’t right, I needed more. I wanted something… a little… beefier? I rummaging through my supplies trying to get an idea of what I wanted and then I found a piece of walnut burl, the grain and striations in the wood were fantastic. I only had one piece of walnut but I was able to squeeze two 8 1/2″ X 5 1/2″ pieces out of it. To do that however, I had to cut it so the grain was running horizontally across the cover instead of from top to bottom. Visually I think it works, the burl hides the direction of the grain well and from structural standpoint this is a fairly hard wood so there shouldn’t be any problem with wear or breakage.
The beauty of the wood called for a very simple treatment so after easing the edges and slightly rounding the corners to avoid “pokeage” a couple of coats of Tung Oil were applied, followed by a couple of coats of Carnuba Wax. The book block is 300 gm (140 Lb.) Fabriano Artistico and sewn to a leather spine with waxed polyester thread using a modified long-stitch. As the stitches go down the spine they get progressively longer and a friend commented that it creates an illusion that each series of Xs is fatter than the one above. Here are the photos: