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  1. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 5:12 AM - My faux book project #1

    Hallo Gentry!

    Being a bit more than average fascinated with the Victorian era, I've found I'd like a personal library to withdraw and enjoy a brandy after the day's chores. Luckily for me, an enlargement of the house is in the pipeline, and my batter half is planning to make her new den there, freeing up her current haunts.

    The room and furniture and all that is a bit in the future, but I'd though I'd start with the books. After all, what is a library without books? Now, I do have a fair amount of them, but most doesn't look very Victorian. My shelves are also full of all manner of other stuff, So why not camouflage what I've already got?

    OK, here's what we all would like our book shelves to look like:

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    Here's reality:

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    The upper shelf isn't too shabby, but the DVD collection is decidedly un-Victorian.

    I decided to have a go at the Farscape box as a test project. Not because I have anything against Claudia Black and Ben Browder (quite the opposite), but because it's a large element, and the Pacekeeper Wars DVD doesn't fit in the box.

    So, first up a new box with room for the extra DVD (made out of old frozen pizza boxes, excellent material!):

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    Design time!

    Since I'd like to go with a "Gentleman explorer" theme (the planned library could then double as a steam-punk den, and all my other oldish stuff wouldn't look out of the way), I designed a typical early Victorian explorer report style book series spines. The text is more or less place holder to get the proper Victorian feeling, I'll try to see it I can get them to be gold:

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    The spines are made from bits of leftover wood, cut to match the with of the design:

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    Tomorrow I'll try for the raised bands.
  2. RPF Premium Member
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 5:19 AM - Re: My faux book project #2

    Great Idea... will follow your thread wih interest and looking forward to see how this finaly turns out.

    By the way.. you can save some time and mold / cast your "fake book covers" and use the cast on the next box Well, I wouild most probably do it that way....
  3. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 7:21 AM - Re: My faux book project #3

    MurdocXXL said: View Post
    By the way.. you can save some time and mold / cast your "fake book covers" and use the cast on the next box Well, I wouild most probably do it that way....
    I see some of the companies that offers faux book spines use that method. You'll still have to gilt the letters though.
  4. DrStranglove's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 7:27 AM - Re: My faux book project #4

    I love this idea. I also have a couple of those old books on your shelf. The Vampire Diaries boxed set however...... huh....
  5. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 7:46 AM - Re: My faux book project #5

    DrStranglove said: View Post
    I love this idea. I also have a couple of those old books on your shelf. The Vampire Diaries boxed set however...... huh....
    That was brought in the door by my better half. I only saw the spin-off (the Originals), because it has Claudia Black in it (last season).

    But yeah, I plan to give that box a treatment as well.
    Last edited by Friendly flyer; 1 Week Ago at 2:03 PM.
  6. KojiroVance's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 9:21 AM - My faux book project #6

    Friendly flyer said: View Post
    … Luckily for me,… my batter half is planning to make her new den there, freeing up her current haunts.
    Try not to pancake her dreams in the pursuit of yours.
    Last edited by KojiroVance; 3 Days Ago at 9:42 AM.
  7. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Week Ago  Apr 20, 2017, 2:18 PM - Re: My faux book project #7

    KojiroVance said: View Post
    Try not to pancake her dreams in the pursuit of yours.
    Sage advice is sage, but she's kind of hard to pancake. She want the new room for her (apparently ever expanding) Theraposidae spider collection (live).

    On reporting your advice, she sends her regards and want you to know she appreciate your gentlemanly consideration!
  8. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    6 Days Ago  Apr 21, 2017, 6:36 AM - Re: My faux book project #8

    Day two, raised bands and spine cover.

    Typical of 19th century upper market book binding are the raised bands on the spines (even in Victorian times these would usually be fake, not the actual core binding showing through the spine cover).

    A neighbour of mine had some smaller bits thin goat skin laying around from a gilt leather course. The pieces was too small for anything useful, but large enough for my book spines.

    First I marked up where I wanted the bands. The fist band attempt involved cluing some paper around a piece of rope.

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    That proved to thick under the goat leather, so I tried small leather thongs in stead:

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    This looks much more like it!

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    Trial spine, experimenting with wet-forming the leather over the spine and bands:

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    Gluing it down with good old fashion wood glue. Even now, while just a loose spine with moist leather it is starting to look the part!:

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    I left my trial spine to dry for tomorrow. So far no hitches.
  9. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    3 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 5:38 AM - Re: My faux book project #9

    Got a bit further over the weekend:

    2nd book spine being covered:

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    Having the technique down, the others followed in short order. Here they are all placed on the box.I didn't trim and fold under the sides on the two outer books:

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    The only book covers (as opposed to spines) that could be visible are books on each end. I filed off a bit of the edge on the inside of the wooden spine core to allow for a hinge line:

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    After gluing the spines on, I pressed the leather in to make a hinge-line (the weather was nice this weekend, a ice lolly stick turned out to be an excellent tool for this) :

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    Cutting down the leather side to make for a half calf binding, and added corner protector:

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    It's starting to look like a stack of books, tomorrow I'll start looking into detailing.
  10. RPF Premium Member bookface's Avatar
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    3 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 7:53 AM - Re: My faux book project #10

    Very cool! I like to do bookbinding as a hobby and I've been thinking of something similar for a while. This may just have kickstarted me on it!
  11. KojiroVance's Avatar
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    3 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 9:42 AM - Re: My faux book project #11

    Friendly flyer said: View Post
    Sage advice is sage, but she's kind of hard to pancake. She want the new room for her (apparently ever expanding) Theraposidae spider collection (live).…
    I don't think you saw your misspelling, or my pun based on it.
  12. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    3 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 11:25 AM - Re: My faux book project #12

    KojiroVance said: View Post
    I don't think you saw your misspelling, or my pun based on it.
    Ah, yes, that.

    I was just waffling about I guess.
  13. RPF Premium Member ecl's Avatar
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    3 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 10:24 PM - Re: My faux book project #13

    Cool idea! I love that style.
  14. KojiroVance's Avatar
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    2 Days Ago  Apr 24, 2017, 11:40 PM - My faux book project #14

    Friendly flyer said: View Post
    Ah, yes, that.

    I was just waffling about I guess.
    Touché, monsieur-up.

    FYI some security professionals approve of the use of hollowed out books to store valuables (like that old clichè of the gun hidden in the book). No burglary rushing through a grab 'n go break-in has time to go through a library of books or videos in the slim hope of finding something.

    So if you created some empty books…. I'd buy a couple.
  15. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 3:14 AM - Re: My faux book project #15

    KojiroVance said: View Post
    FYI some security professionals approve of the use of hollowed out books to store valuables (like that old clichè of the gun hidden in the book). No burglary rushing through a grab 'n go break-in has time to go through a library of books or videos in the slim hope of finding something.
    I've thought about it. Using hollowed out books require hollowing out a book though, which means destroying it. Being a bit of a bibliophile (hey, I work in a museum!), I don't really want to butcher anything old. Making a new box on the other hand.... If you're after a "security by obscurity" style book box, I'd think you'd be best served by using a book that won't stand out. I'd use an old "HTML for dummies" soft-cover or similar boringly looking book rather than an old leather bound volume. I would think the old Farscape box would be a better hiding place than one of these:

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    So if you created some empty books…. I'd buy a couple.
    Thank you for the kind words!

    I'm contemplating making a larger box to clear up the clutter laying around, like my leather working tools. It would be nice to have them all neatly stacked on a shelf above and not laying around where the offspring get hold of them. My plan is to try out a few more DVD boxes to get the technique down first. But yes, I'm eventually getting there

    The cost sending things by the mail system is prohibitive though. From a cost-benefit perspective, you're probably better served by making them yourselves. I hope to make this a kind of how-to thread. The sticky point is gilt lettering without investing in gilding irons and leaf gold, which I think I'm on track to cracking.
  16. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 3:33 AM - Re: My faux book project #16

    bookface said: View Post
    Very cool! I like to do bookbinding as a hobby and I've been thinking of something similar for a while. This may just have kickstarted me on it!
    The boxes are easy because of the wooden spine (no hammering rebellious paper blocks into shape or taking care not to glue the spine cover to the block), but the main obstacle is gilding. If you already have proper gilding irons, you could make a faux library that would put Sherlock Holmes himself to shame!
  17. Nova Props RPF Premium Member Daniel Nelms's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 5:18 AM - Re: My faux book project #17

    This is really neat, thanks for posting it. +Subbed!
  18. RPF Premium Member bookface's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 10:44 AM - Re: My faux book project #18

    Friendly flyer said: View Post
    The boxes are easy because of the wooden spine (no hammering rebellious paper blocks into shape or taking care not to glue the spine cover to the block), but the main obstacle is gilding. If you already have proper gilding irons, you could make a faux library that would put Sherlock Holmes himself to shame!
    I have a hot foil stamping machine that I use for titles on books, so long as the leather is stamped before it goes onto a curved surface, it's all good!
  19. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 1:01 PM - Re: My faux book project #19

    bookface said: View Post
    I have a hot foil stamping machine that I use for titles on books, so long as the leather is stamped before it goes onto a curved surface, it's all good!
    Oh, I wish I had something similar, I'm really envious!

    ttI was thinking of making a typical 17th century bestiary out of the Primaeval box set. That would requite gilt letters on leather though, which for the moment is a bit outside my capability. Basically. I'm looking for a way to apply gold foil without involving hot irons. For the moment I've found a way to apply it to heavy paper involving a laser printer and a laminator, but the leather is too heavy to run through the printer!
    Last edited by Friendly flyer; 1 Day Ago at 2:21 PM.
  20. RPF Premium Member Mechanized2400's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 1:55 PM - Re: My faux book project #20

    Loving this thread
  21. RPF Premium Member bookface's Avatar
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    1 Day Ago  Apr 26, 2017, 5:34 PM - Re: My faux book project #21

    If you wanted to send me the leather I'd be happy to stamp some titles for you. The fonts are expensive though so I only have Times in 4 different sizes. I can post some pics if you want.
  22. Friendly flyer's Avatar
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    7 Hours Ago  Apr 27, 2017, 3:45 PM - Re: My faux book project #22

    bookface said: View Post
    If you wanted to send me the leather I'd be happy to stamp some titles for you. The fonts are expensive though so I only have Times in 4 different sizes. I can post some pics if you want.
    You could?!? Man, you're a gem!

    Can you print from a file or do you print with metal Times blocks directly? I've made a jpg file I was planning to print to A4 elephant hide sheet, and run through a laminator with gold foil (I've checked, it actually works). Real leather it is not however. I'll happily (really happily) pay for someone printing the labels on Moroccan leather for me!
  23. RPF Premium Member bookface's Avatar
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    7 Hours Ago  Apr 27, 2017, 4:22 PM - Re: My faux book project #23

    No problem I have actual metal type that I use for it, the machine heats it up and it gets pressed down onto the foil and into the leather. Here's a set of Harry Potter books I did:

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    Those are are the two smallest font sizes I have, 24 point and 14 point. 14 point works best if you want the letters to read horizontally, but if you're happy to have them going downwards like these books then you can use the 24 or even 30 point.

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