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Valentine Bindings: Medieval Heart - 12th February 2022 (5.30 - 8.30pm)

$225.00 - $250.00

Image of Valentine Bindings: Medieval Heart - 12th February 2022  (5.30 - 8.30pm)
  • Image of Valentine Bindings: Medieval Heart - 12th February 2022  (5.30 - 8.30pm)
  • Image of Valentine Bindings: Medieval Heart - 12th February 2022  (5.30 - 8.30pm)

Make this your best Valentines date ever, by binding a Medieval heart book with us!

In this season of chocolates and candy hearts, we wondered: how, and when, did the heart become associated with romance in Western culture? The early Egyptians believed the heart was the seat of the soul; the Greeks, the seat of both reason and emotion. It’s not an unlikely association, but there does not seem to be an absolute source for it.
The first known depiction of heart = love, from Roman de la poire (ca. 1250), shows a suitor handing his anatomically correct heart to the object of affections, who looks somewhat taken aback. Within only a few years the heart symbol had become more decorative and less anatomical, and firmly associated with devotion, both romantic and religious. It’s not surprising, then, that bookbinders have been drawn to the heart shape in creating books.

Medieval  heart-shaped books were generally composed of hand-lettered and illuminated folios stitched together. In many cases the unopened book resembled an almond. When the book is opened it blossoms, so to speak, into a heart.

© Det Kongelige Bibliotek 2003
“The Heart Book,” left, dates from the 1550s. It is the oldest known Danish collection of ballads, and contains 83 love songs from the court of King Christian III.

© Det Kongelige Bibliotek 2003
The Book of Hours of Amiens Nicolas Blairie, picture 2, when opened, makes a more classic heart shape. The shape was such that, opened, “the two halves of the almond bloom to fit the contours of a heart, concrete evocation of the heart of the person praying the prayer that opens.”

In this workshop, we will make a heart shape book, filled with faux parchment paper, cut to shape. There is a lot of cutting down of the paper to shape, but as with all binding, satisfying to make. The book will be sewn, lined and finished in full leather, red of course. The hard part will be deciding if you will keep it for yourself or give it away!

Date: 12th February 2022
Time: 5.30 - 8.30pm

Materials in your Bookbinding Kit:
Parchment like paper
Linen Thread
Red leather
Book board

Tools you will need:
PVA Glue
Paper knife
Board Knife
Waste paper for gluing
Scalpel and blade

A full materials pack couriered out to you, free post. (no tools except needles)
Closing date for booking for those requiring materials delivery in the Sydney Metro areas is 4 days before class commences.

This workshop booking is for one person only. Additional participants must book in individually, regardless of household arrangement or age.

This is a technical workshop. The workshop requires a certain level of capability and confidence in using sharp instruments and being able to follow verbal instructions is expected.

No refunds for Online workshops once commenced. A Zoom link shall be sent out to you a few days before. We shall start gathering students 10 minutes before the workshop. Lateness shall not be accommodated.

Workshop written and delivered by Isabelle McGowan © 2021 Isabelle McGowan. All rights reserved.