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Question On Good Journal Construction - Stitches, How Many Makes For Good Construction?

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Silent Speaker



I was wondering if anyone with some familiarity with bookbinding could advise me on whether what I've been using as a journal has a durable construction or not. Though this may be readily apparent since I've had it with no issues for a few years, I'd still like to know what any bookbinders around here think.


The leather-bound journal I've been using for the past couple of years has two internal "stitches" that hold the pages together (I don't know the proper term for them is, or if that is in fact their purpose). They're visible parts of thread that appear to hold the packets of pages together, and can only be seen when you open the journal to some pages.


One is near the top, and another is near the bottom.


Now, I've seen books and diaries out there with 4 or more "stitches" down the middle of the pages, and was wondering if the one I've been using somehow has a "lesser" construction due to only having 2?


It has lasted very well - no pages have ripped out or anything,although it's always been a worry - and I'm happy with it, but it shall soon be time for a replacement and I'm just wondering if I should be looking for something with a different construction for durability's sake (even if it's just a theoretical "durability").


Is it as simple as the more stitches there are, the better bound a book is? I'm sure that there are a myriad other factors which contribute to something being well made, but it's nice to know at least that, if all other things are equal, the more stitches there are the more sturdy a book is. (or not?)


Thank you for any help that you may provide. These things are not so cheap as far as notebooks go and I'd like to be as informed as possible, especially since I'll be stuck with it for however many years hence.

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I will soon experiment with making journals and am curious about your post. I have a some difficulty visualizing your explanation, but I think you might be referring to how the block of signatures is kept together. I've perused a few different books on book binding and some methods are careful to consider the weight of the paper, number of signatures, the cover, etc...


I would offer that it is no more or less durable especially since you have had it for so long. I think it was just the choice of the binder maybe for aesthetic choice or that was all that was necessary to make the journal satisfactory to him or her. Indiana University has a step by step on making a case bound journal/book. You can definitely take a look at that just to see what was done. As you go through it, there are explanations of terms and such. This might be a good introduction for you if you are so inclined.





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More stitches do not equal good binding. Too many and the paper just rips out as if it were perforated. It doesn't matter about the amount of stitching, but about the quality of the stitches. If a journal is going to be used often and for a long period of time, perhaps some more stitching may be better, but as long as the quality of the thread and stitches are good, you're fine.

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