Monday, February 6, 2017

Codex 2017

Don't know about Codex? Read this New York Times article for a pretty thorough description. Then visit me at my table at the Craneway Pavilion, in Richmond, CA, to see recent creative work from the studio!

That's me. You probably know that already.

Family Style
Recipes collected by Helen Marchese, primarily from the late 1940s through the 1980s. Endpapers from Paul Bercy, Simples Notions de Francais, New York, 1894. Printed on Mohawk Superfine on an Indigo printer. Bound in a three part binding with stamped linen spine and gingham fabric over boards. Edition of 50. 2017.

Between, Among, Within
Indigo pigment pastepapers. Photographs of the Catskill water supply system in process of construction, 1918, with A topographical map of Hudsons River, Claude Sauthier, 1898, both from The New York Public Library Digital Collections. Printed on Asuka paper on an Indigo printer. Full cloth binding. Edition of 22. 2016.

Natural Philosophies
Botanical engravings from A Curious Herbal, Elizabeth Blackwell, 1739, from the New York Public Library Digital Collections. Herbal remedies from historic sources. Monoprints on pages from the
Encyclopedia Britannica, volume C, 1969. Printed on Asuka paper on an Indigo printer. Bound in quarter cloth. Edition of 20. 2016.

Amissa Anima: a book of the dead
Two volumes. Eye engraving, Dioptrique oculaire, Chérubin d’Orléans, 1671. The Spirit Photographs of William Hope, the National Media Museum. The Ouija, Kennard Novelty Co., Museum of Talking Boards. Printed on Asuka on an Indigo printer with Joss paper endpapers. Bound in laminated Asuka paper over marbled paper. Edition of 50;  2016.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

We're going to Hollywood!

photo credit Los Angeles Public Library
Effective June 1, Stephanie Gibbs Bookbinding is thrilled to announce the new studio location, right on Hollywood Boulevard. Directly above a used book shop, a stone's throw from cocktails and coffee, and, of course, on the Walk of Stars.

Do come visit! (Please call or email first!)
(213) 223-6921
6646 Hollywood Boulevard Ste 206, Hollywood, CA 90028


Sunday, May 15, 2016

accordion calendars

Way back in the 14th Century, accordion books were used as calendars:

Copenhagen Royal Library
Today, calendars often appear as broadsides in the mailbox, in a form remarkably unchanged in 500 years:
visit LACMA!
So I decided to combine the two approaches to displaying events, and turned the broadside into an accordion:

And, yes, I am slightly tempted to do this with every monthly LACMA calendar going forward. . .

Friday, April 15, 2016

certainties [2016 edition]


 cats and taxes (2016, for 2015)

Los Angeles Times Book Fest

Monday, April 4, 2016

upcoming talk -- April 17!

Join me at BookArtsLA, in West Hollywood, for a free lecture on Sunday evening, April 17, at 6.30.

Here's the text from the press release:

Loving Old Books: An Evening Talk with Stephanie Gibbs

Stephanie Gibbs is a conservator, book enthusiast, expert about vellum, historical bibles, leather bindings. and much more. Stephanie will talk about the care and special considerations for old books.

Stephanie is currently Bookbinder-In-Residence at the International Museum of Printing in Carson, CA, and operates her private bookbinding and conservation practice out of the Book Arts Annex.

Put Another Way:

Let's find an interesting way to look at and talk about my work in book conservation! The goal of the evening is to have a good time and for everyone to stay awake, even if the combination of powerpoint and old books might be, in other circumstances, soporific.


Monday, January 18, 2016

year of the monkey
New Year's Eve Fireworks
Los Angeles Public Library Photo Archive

2016 : The Year of the Monkey
And postal deliveries were a bit funky
Empty envelopes in mailboxes across this fair land
Missing holiday flipbooks (made by hand)
If yours didn’t arrive, do write me a note
A replacement will be sent, be you near or remote.

Friday, January 1, 2016

the somersault holiday edition

It has been an autumn of palm trees, oceans, and museums. Thankfully, the museums have palm trees, so there hasn't been much of a need to choose between these focal points.

Then the holiday season arrived, and, with it, lights on palm trees. I was deeply amused.

The discovery of the Los Angeles Public Library Photo Archives led to the parallel discovery that lights-on-palm-trees goes back at least to the thirties:

As do any number of other jolly holiday traditions:

Meanwhile, I also discovered the French National Library Archives, except, being French, they call it Bibliothèque nationale de France, and all of the databases are listed and indexed in French. I neither speak nor read French. However, there were illustrated comic books! With build-it-yourself-flip-books! My ignorance of French was not about to stand in my way of antique flip-books.

So, combining an Ansel Adams Christmas Show ("Santa's Circus") from Los Angeles, with a somersaulting top-hatted acrobat from France, the holiday edition 2015-2016 came to be.

The pages were reformatted, cleaned, and laid out in Photoshop and InDesign, and printed commercially. This was a larger edition than in years past, encompassing recipients from both sides of the Atlantic and stretching across to the Pacific, so I used more industrial equipment, as well. It was a good excuse to learn how to use a Challenge paper cutter (without losing a finger) and a drill press (likewise).

Each page was cut down to strips, then each strip separated into frames.

Booklets were then collated, and sewing holes drilled.

It became apparent that a blank spine was simply a spine waiting for its next shining opportunity:

The booklets were sewn into their folded wrappers:

And somersaulted into the world, carried by USPS circus stamps. Happy new year!

Thursday, October 1, 2015


An Odyssey.
An Arrival.
A Conclusion.

A Beginning.

we did this
Directions from Easthampton, MA to Los Angeles, CA
Walking directions: 3,107 miles; 1,016 hours.

We took a truck.