Upcycled Bookbinding: and sew it continues – an online bookbinding course (no kit)


This online course shares my take on 4 eye-catching book structures that you will no-doubt return to again and again! A good option if you have already dabbled in bookbinding or done one of my workshops before and want to try your hand at some more advanced upcycled bookbinding techniques.

This product listing is for access to the online course only (no kit), if you would prefer to buy access with a kit, see ‘Upcycled Bookbinding: And sew it continues (with kit options)’ on the previous page.

This online course shares my take on 4 eye-catching book structures that you will no-doubt return to again and again! A good option if you have already dabbled in bookbinding or done one of my workshops before and want to try your hand at some more advanced techniques.

The book structures covered in this course include:

  • Secret Belgian Binding – with decorative cover stitch
  • Back-to-back leather book with exposed long/cross-stitch in two colours – with guidance on how to join two smaller pieces of leather to create the cover
  • French link stitch fabric covered book – featuring envelope inserts and multi-ribbon spine
  • Two needle, two colour Coptic binding – with decorative cover stitch

These books can be used as everything from sketchbooks and journals to photo albums and memory books. They make great gifts too and can be really personalised to suit a person, place or project!

Along with comprehensive step-by-step instructions, this course shares my passion for making books with remnant materials such as leather offcuts, textile samples, recycled card, paper, beads & buttons – I also talk you through how you can scale up and down to make books of different sizes and share ideas on how to give each book it’s own character. A great opportunity to add some new bookbinding techniques to your repertoire and learn how to transform everyday materials into a collection of unique and usable books.

A comprehensive kit list for each bookbinding project will be issued with the course login details on 15 November, see the ‘What’s in the kit?’ section below for more info on the kind of materials you’ll need.

Or if you would prefer to buy access to this workshop with a kit that includes all the paper and leather/pleather you need pre-cut to the correct size, click here. Please note: I have limited stock and materials kits will be issued on a first come first served basis.

How this course is taught?

Upon purchase you will be emailed login details for a private page on the Bookbinding with Cass website. This will give you access to a range of resources that guide you through the 4 bookbinding projects outlined above. These resources include –

  • A materials / tool list with list of recommended suppliers
  • A ‘Materials Scavenger Hunt’ with ideas on everyday items you can incorporate into your books
  • Detailed step-by-step video tutorials
  • A ‘Community Noticeboard’ with recommendations on where to source materials / how to fill your books
  • A photo gallery which will feature examples and photos of participants work
  • A private Facebook Group where you can meet fellow bookbinding enthusiasts also taking this course, ask questions, post photos of your books in progress and share useful links & inspiration

You will have continued access to the course content with your login details so that you can work through each project at your own pace and return to my tutorials for a reminder of the techniques covered as and when you need. I only ask that you don’t share your log in details with any third parties.

Please note: there is no one-to-one tuition or live Zoom sessions included in this course. If you get stuck with anything or have questions, you can contact me via email and/or the course Facebook Group and I will get back to you as soon as I can.


I have created an accompanying materials kit for this course, which contains everything you need to make the 4 books included, with the option to include a bookbinding toolbag – this is available to purchase alongside the course here.

If providing your own materials, you’re in the right place – a comprehensive kit list for each bookbinding project can be accessed with the course login details. Here is a brief overview of what you will need to give you an idea of what is required:

Each kit includes:

  • Paper cut to a range of sizes
  • Greyboard for book covers
  • Leather or pleather for book covers
  • Fabric for book covers
  • Ribbon
  • UHU Glue
  • Double sided adhesive sheet
  • Book film
  • Embroidery thread in two colours
  • Wax (for waxing thread)
  • A selection of decorative papers for book covers and decorative pages
  • Card stock to line your books
  • Elastic/leather-scraps/twine for creating book fastenings
  • 2 curved needles
  • 2 bulldog clips

Tools required

  • Awl
  • Cork punch board
  • Bookbinding needle
  • Bonefolder
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Scissors
  • Craft knife, stanley-knife or rotary cutter (whatever you prefer to work with) for cutting grey board
  • Cutting mat or chopping board
  • Japanese Screw Punch with 1-1.5mm screw head – I recommend purchasing a legitimate Japanese Screw Punch from J Hewit & Sons, but if this is too costly, there are cheaper versions available from places like Etsy, Ebay & Amazon (I can’t contest to the quality of these but regular participants tell me they work fine).
  • Plenty of bulldog clips for holding your book together while it dries
  • There is also the option to incorporate paper, materials, bits & bobs from your own collection – my ‘Materials Scavenger Hunt’ document, which will be available when the course goes live, will give you lots of ideas on this!
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