Black Cat Bindery

Black Cat Bindery
Black Cat Bindery. Traditional Craft Bookbinders

Monday, 27 August 2018


A bookbinding colleague of mine, Iraj Navidi,  living and working in Iran, has produced this beautifully bound book. Bound in traditional style using natural Iranian colours. Highly embellished on both front and back boards as well as on the spine.
Due to sanctions on his country he has been unable to market this book, world wide and so I offered to put the details up on this blog as he would like to be able to sell it. Please share to any platform if you wish or contact myself or Iraj by email navidi.bindery@gmail.com for more details.
  • Sanctions https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/aug/07/iran-braces-for-new-round-of-us-economic-sanctions says

  • Donald Trump has warned America’s trading partners that anyone who does business with Iran will not be doing business with the US, after his administration reimposed blanket sanctions.
    The US president described the new sanctions, which hit Iran’s access to dollars, gold and precious metals, as “the most biting ever imposed”. 
    “In November they ratchet up to yet another level,” he tweeted. “Anyone doing business with Iran will NOT be doing business with the United States. I am asking for WORLD PEACE, nothing less!”
    Within hours of the sanctions taking effect, the German carmaker Daimler, which announced a joint venture in Iran last year, said it was halting its business activities in the country.
    The punitive measures came into force in the early hours of Tuesday, and follow Trump’s decision in May to renege on the landmark 2015 deal to curtail Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
    These hard hitting sanctions affect the working population meaning that life becomes intolerable { Iraj's words }

RUBA'IYAT
OMAR KHAYYAM
Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám is the title that Edward FitzGerald gave to his 1859 translation from Farsi to English of a selection of quatrains (rubāʿiyāt) attributed to Omar Khayyam (1048–1131), dubbed "the Astronomer-Poet of Persia".
FitzGerald's work at first was unsuccessful, but was popularised by Whitley Stokes from 1861 onward, and the work came to be greatly admired by the Pre-Raphaelites. In 1872 FitzGerald had a third edition printed which increased interest in the work in America. By the 1880s, the book was extremely well known throughout the English-speaking world, to the extent of the formation of numerous "Omar Khayyam Clubs" and a "fin de siècle cult of the Rubaiyat".[1] FitzGerald's work has been published in several hundred editions, and it has inspired similar translation efforts both in English and in many other languages. { Wikipedia}

Book cover made of goat leather. Size 23 * 34 cm. Made with hand. Using natural colors of Iran without the use of chemical and industrial colors. The book is in five languages: English-French-German-Arabic and Farsi.





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Monday, 30 July 2018


Leather table planners / seating planners
Handmade by Black Cat Bindery, Somerset, UK

http://www.blackcatbindery.com/product-category/table-planners/

This bespoke leather Table Planner is the perfect dinner party companion. Ideal for those who loves hosting dinner parties. A lovely centre piece designed for fine dining. You can freely arrange the seating plans for your guests, swapping things around at the last minute if someone cancels or requests to bring an extra guest. Just pop the name card between the leather panels to hold them securely. Also makes for a great housewarming gift.
Our traditional seating planner is bound in genuine  leather with gold hand decorative tooling on front. It measures approx. 19” x 9”. A house or family name can be embossed in gold in the middle of the planner, included in the price.
Colours available are the classic racing green, which compliments the gold tooling beautifully, the rich scarlet red, traditional tan and a beautiful mid blue.
We can also source further colours, if needed, from our supplier.
The seating planner is lined, on the back, in a moire cloth and housed in a velvet bag. 
We also include a bundle of blank name cards.
Some examples of recent planners below



We also make matching personalised leather napkin rings.











Company logos and family crests can also be embossed onto the centre of the seating planner.




We can also make table planners to bespoke sizes and shapes












Friday, 28 April 2017

Presentation storage boxes




Bespoke clamshell storage and presentation boxes hand made to order.
Perfect storage solutions which are both beautiful and useful. 
Keeps items dust free and away from damaging light.

These boxes are covered in leather and linen with a rounded book spine. Raised bands on the spine with gold lettering and decorative tooling










Half leather storage box with marbled paper sides. Leather spine labels and decorative gold tooling

Thursday, 29 September 2016

 This post is going to be more of a call for information.
I have this lovely Japanese book with illustrations of plants. I have been told that its title is "Encyclopedia of Flora " but this is all I know. It would be lovely if I could find out a little more information so if you know the book or can translate any of the text I would love you to get in touch.
info@blacklcatbindery.com
 It belonged to my Great Aunt, Tania Midgley, a garden photographer and came to me along with her extensive library.
Ive also popped some pictures on our Facebook page as well at https://www.facebook.com/bookbinding












                                                              Encyclopedia of Flora



Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Bookplates

Bookplates

We have had quite a lot of antiquarian books arrive in the bindery over the last few weeks. Mostly calf bindings and although beautiful, most in rather a sorry state. What we have noticed is that a few have had some lovely bookplates.
bookplate, also known as ex-librīs [Latin, "from the books of..."], is usually a small print or decorative label pasted into a book, often on the inside front cover, to indicate its owner. Simple typographical bookplates are termed "booklabels".
Bookplates typically bear a namemottodevicecoat-of-armscrestbadge, or any motif that relates to the owner of the book, or is requested by him from the artist or designer. The name of the owner usually follows an inscription such as "from the books of..." or "from the library of...", or in Latin, ex libris.... Bookplates are important evidence for the provenance of books.

Link to history on https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bookplate#Study_and_collection


As we like bookplates in general and always find them fascinating, I thought I would take some photos and post them on a blog

Ive done a little digging around on the internet a have come up with some info on a couple of them.
If anyone wants to add or know any further info just email me at info@blackcatbindery.com and I can add it. I may also add more book plates as and when they land on our doorstep.

I did think it would be nice to produce some modern bookplates for newly married couples to mount in the front of wedding albums, photo albums, keepsake boxes and  guest books.


The de Burgh coat of arms A red cross on a gold shield above which is a seated and chained 'mountain cat'. Legend says that the red cross started with the first crusade. One story is that a de Burgh recovered a gold shield from a slain Saracen and marking a red cross on it with his own blood. Another story said that Richard I dipped his finger in the blood of a slain Saracen king, put a red cross on the gold shield of de Burgh, and said "for your bravery this will be your crest". The Cat is said to represent liberty and courage and is believed to be awarded for a de Burgh's courage and skill in battle during the crusades. The motto has varied between 'A cruce Salus' meaning 'salvation from the cross' which would have originated in the crusades or 'ung roy, ung foy, ung loy' which means 'one king, one faith, one law' and this would've originated when the family moved to Ireland.


Edward Heron-Allen FRS (1861–1943)

He was the fourth son of George Allen (1823–1911), a lawyer from London and Catherine Herring or Heron (b. 1830). He married 1stly, Marianna Lehamn, daughter of the artist Rudolf Lehmann. 
In 1903 he married 2ndly, Edith Emily (1872–1943), daughter of William Brown Pepler MD. 
The bookplate was thus made after 1903.~

A lawyer by profession, Edward Heron-Allen is one of those personalities difficult to define. A man of many talents and a vast range of interests, both in the arts and science, he dedicated much of his life to the study and writing on a wide variety of subjects – novels and short stories, chiromancy, the art of violin making, local history and archaeology, marine zoology (the chalk foraminifera), heraldry, bibliography, asparagus culture, the translation and study of Persian literature classics, and on oriental religions (Budhism and the Egyptian Nefer sign).
His literal prose translation of The Ruba'iyát of Omar Khayyám is still celebrated (see, http://members.iinet.net.au/~ploke/Omar/Khayyamnotes.htmland http://members.iinet.net.au/~ploke/Omar/compare.html).
Info taken from http://bookplate-jvarnoso.blogspot.co.uk/2007_03_01_archive.html




Thanks to a lovely customer two more bookplates were brought into the bindery to add to our new collection.


The  below bookplate shows arms of Trinity House with the motto “Trinitas in Unitate” (Three in One). The Corporation of Trinity House of Deptford Strond, known as Trinity House, has three core functions: it is the official General Lighthouse Authority for England, Wales, the Channel Islands and Gibraltar, responsible for the provision and maintenance of navigational aids, such as lighthouses, buoys, and maritime radio/satellite communication systems. Trinity House is also an official deep sea pilotage authority, providing expert navigators for ships trading in Northern European waters.



A rather nice library is depicted in this American bookplate owned by Arthur L' Fisher MD