Finishing - Independent Stream

Finishing introduces the basic concepts and techniques used in decorating leather-bound books. The workshop covers blind and gold tooling; titling; several methods of inlay and onlay; historical decorative tools; and typical elements of design. The workshop includes a thorough discussion and demonstration of various techniques on different kinds of leathers.

To practice the techniques presented in the workshop participants need at least two brass tools to work with: one line and one decorative.

The Independent Stream for Finishing consists of approximately 3 hours of videos in MP4 format and a PDF manual. The materials will be provided for download from the Thinkific platform.


- Variables That Affect Tooling:
- Leather; tannage; adhesive
- Tools & sources of heat
- Heat level & the “sizzle”
- Moisture
- Dwell
- Brass tools and their maintenance
- Best practices while tooling and position of the body
- French and English practices compared and techniques for tooling
- Blind tooling
- Carbon tooling
- Putting in the trace
- Gold tooling
- Burnishing
- Working with Gold leaf, gold cushion, and gold knife
- Working with Foil
Spine titling
- Polishing
- Inlays and onlays
- Discussion of onlay techniques: English, back paring, and French


The Home Study Independent Stream workshops are not eligible as prerequisites for in-studio workshops nor towards a CBBAG Certificate of Completion

CBBAG Home Study materials are copyrighted. In purchasing any Home Study workshop participants must agree to the CBBAG the Home Study Programme Policy and may not duplicate the manuals or videos except for their personal educational use.

Policy Click here for the Home Study Policy.

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Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild (CBBAG)

Charitable Business Number 89179 5445 RR0001

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