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Experience Japanese Culture Firsthand 【Japanese-style bookbinding】

Experience Japanese Culture Firsthand 【Japanese-style bookbinding】

【Japanese-style bookbinding】is the theme of our fourth “Experience Japan Culture Firsthand”.

It was a pleasure to have Ms. Nanbu Michiko of NPO Engawa Summit as our instructor. Moreover, she came from the far Mie Prefecture!

How to create a Japanese-style bookbinding

We can make pieces of old kimono or other clothing we do not use anymore into charming Japanese binding notebooks.

Let’s create a Japanese-style bookbinding together following the steps below!

  1. Choose your pattern. We had the opportunity of choosing our favorite pattern among all the ones brought by Ms. Nanbu.

2. Cut the cloth according to the size of the cardboard base.

3. Put the paper in the middle of the cut cloth and make sure to moisten it well using a water shower spray.

4. Use a paint brush to spread laundry starch glue all over the surface.

5. After brushing generously and carefully in the middle of the cloth, use a scrubbing brush and press it from above!

6. Hit it steadily until the paper adheres well to the cloth.

7. Now let it dry for a moment. If you expose it to the sun or wind, it will dry quickly!

8. When dried, fold a few centimeters on the four sides and cut out  the fabric in excess in each corner.

9. Once creases are made, spread  the laundry starch again all over the surface in order to glue the cloth and the paper together.

10. As the glue does not stick immediately, we all pressed it down and pasted the two materials.

11. When the four sides stick together, expose them in the open air and let it dry again.

12. Once dried, what you have to do is to insert the papers (the pages of the notebook) into the cover and sew them with a needle and thread.

We sew by ourself while looking at the example of Ms. Nanbu. Moreover, I could sew it quickly as it wasn’t difficult as it may seem.

Well done!

Ms. Nanbu thought about some kind words suitable for the people she met in that very


Then, she wrote those kind words in the notebook using an indigo color.

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