Volume 20 - Autumn 2005


Letters & Feedback


Tree Calf Bindings Revisited

In Skin Deep, volume 15 - Spring 2003, Richard Smart wrote an interesting article on the dying art of 'Tree -Calf-ing'. Richard recently sent in some photographs showing some recent work and I was curious to know how he had achieved the high shine on the leather. - Ed.

To get the shine, after doing the tree calf whilst the leather was still damp I placed the book in the press between chrome polishing plates to dry. Once dry I removed the book from the press and after tooling putting down end papers etc. used your JHS leather dressing in several thin layers and gave them a polish, then placed the book back in the press between the polishing plates for a while. If it was a morocco binding I would again place in the press whilst the leather was damp, and once dry I would put a thin shellac coating on the leather, allow to totally dry then a light smear of Vaseline to stop the polishing plates sticking, then place back in the press. I don't like using shellac on calf.

Richard Smart
Vancouver, Canada


Skin Deep - Volume 20 - Autumn 2005

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