Because of necessary COVID-19 safety precautions, the number of participants will be limited to maintain proper social distancing. Tickets must be purchased online in advance.
Workshops are limited to 6 persons maximum to allow for social distancing.
As of 3/3/2022, face masks are optional, not required for Historic Sugartown’s workshops and programs.
All participants must abide by social distancing procedures.
Separate materials and tools will be provided to avoid unnecessary contact between participants.
For the safety of our visitors and staff, any participant with visible signs of sickness (cough, etc.) will not be allowed to join the workshop and will be given a refund. Please stay home if you are sick.
Level I: Participants will take home a blank book they create in class, using the methods that were employed from about the first century through the mid 19th century. They will hand-sew the book sections (called signatures); secure the hard covers; add a leather or cloth spine, and decorative paper, to the covers; and lay down the endpapers. Participants will also be provided step-by-step written instructions they can take home.
New! Introduction to Book Sewing:In this class, participants will learn two sewing techniques not taught in the Bookbinding I class, the French Link Stitch and the Herringbone Stitch. The introductory class will last three hours.
New! Bookbinding I & II Workshop WeekendIn this weekend workshop, participants will immerse themselves in the art of bookbinding. Each attendee will create an 8-signature, fully leather-bound blank book using traditional methods employed from the first century through the mid-19th century. They will hand-sew the book sections (called signatures); secure the cover boards; sew a headband across the top and bottom of the spine, perform rounding and backing of the spine; add a full leather cover, and lay down beautifully hand-marbled endpapers provided for them. Class will take place over a weekend. Each day will go from 9AM to 3PM. Participants must take part in both days.
Level II:This is an advanced class only for participants who have taken the introductory Bookbinding I workshop. The students will take home a fully leather-bound book. They will learn new techniques that are not taught in the basic course such as Rounding & Backing and Headbanding.
All materials are included, and tools will be provided. Level II participants may bring their own book if they get pre-approval.**
Cost per Person*:
Bookbinding Level I & Evening: $90/Adult
Bookbinding Level II: $120/Adult
Bookbinding Level I & II Weekend: $195/Adult
Introduction to Book Sewing: $60/Adult
Class size is limited depending on the type of class. Participants must be over the age of 14. Participants under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Minimum class size of 3 people must be met to run the workshop.
Length of Class:
Full: Typical class lasts about 5-6 hrs
Evening: Typical class lasts 2.5 hours
Weekend Level I & II: Class will take place over a weekend. Each day will go from 9AM to 3PM. Participants must take part in both days.
Intro to Book Sewing: Typical class lasts 3 hours
Lunch: We invite participants to bring a lunch to eat during the workshop. We have a refrigerator available if needed. Evening workshop participants do not need to bring lunch.
Marbling is the art of floating and designing watercolors on a base fluid then permanently transferring the design to paper. It was developed by the Persians in the 15thC. The participants will be instructed in preparing the paper to accept the paint; mixing the colors for marbling; creating the base fluid; floating the colors on the base, then designing them; and transferring the design to paper. The students will take home their finished papers. Marbling students who take the bookbinding course may use their papers for book covers.
New! Advanced – Ebru:The Turkish people mastered the art of marbling centuries ago. Many of their techniques, patterns, and terms are used in Marbling. In this class, you will be taught Turkish Marbling, or Ebru, the Art of Cloud Painting. No prerequisite is required.
Advanced – Historical Patterns:This advanced class covers common uncombed patterns from the first half of the 19th century and earlier. We will use modern pigments as well as explore the grinding and making some of our own pigments as we learn Shell, Stormont, Glouster, Italian Hair vein, and other period uncombed patterns.
Children’s Session:This is a shortened version of our full-day marbling class designed specifically for children and adults. The session will run from 10 AM to 12 PM. Marbling is one of the easiest crafts any child can master- literally in just a few minutes your child will become an accomplished marbler. It’s a mistake-free art, and one of the most creative and beautiful. In this 2 hour class, your child will make 10-20 sheets of marbled paper. As we say with marbling “Your imagination is your limitation.”
Cost per Person*:
Full & Themed Workshops: $80/Adult; $65/Child (Ages 8-17).
Advanced Workshops: $110/Adult (Ages 14 and up)
Children’s Session: $35/Child & Adult. Recommended for ages 5 – 12. All children must be accompanied by an adult. The adult must be present for the entire workshop. 1 additional child may be added for an additional $10.
Class size is limited to 6 people until further notice. Children’s Session is limited to 4 Child/Adult pairs. Minimum class size of 3 people must be met to run the workshop.
Length of Class:
Full, Themed, and Advanced: Typical class lasts about 5 hrs
Children’s Session: Class last 2 hrs
Lunch: We invite participants to bring a lunch to eat during the regular workshop. We have a refrigerator available if needed. Evening workshop participants do not need to bring lunch.
Create your own marbled scarf in Historic Sugartown’s Bindery! Marbling is the art of floating and designing watercolors on a base fluid then permanently transferring the design to paper. Colonial Williamsburg-trained instructor, Ramon Townsend of ColonialBindery.com, will lead the group through the entire marbling process. Participants will take home their finished scarves. If scarves aren’t your style, make a marbled tie or bandana. This is a BYOB event and participants are invited to bring their favorite drinks and snacks.
Cost per Person*: Admission: $60/Adult (21+). All supplies included. One finished textile per person. Pre-registration is required.
Class size is limited. Minimum class size of 3 people must be met to run the workshop.
If you are interested in scheduling a Scarf Marbling Party for a group, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 610-640-2667
Gilding / Gold Tooling
“Gold, that most precious of metals!” Have you ever seen an old leatherbound or cloth book decorated with gold? If you enjoy reading books, love the look of gold, and enjoy the feel of leather then this is the workshop for you. Using gold leaf, gold foil and Historic Sugartown’s collection of bookbinding finishing tools you will learn traditional methods of designing and decorating leather in gold, the same way fine books were gold-tooled hundreds of years ago.
All materials are included, and tools will be provided.
Cost per Person*: $60/Adult
Class size is limited to 6 people until further notice. Participants must be over the age of 18.
Participants will be taught basic book repair techniques, and in the process learn about the book’s components and traditional hand bookbinding methods. They will dissect a book and reassemble it. Participants will deconstruct the book by detaching the covers and spine; removing the sewing; and disassembling the text. They will then reconstruct their book by performing page repair; resewing the text; and rehinging the covers and spine.
New! Advanced Restoration:This advanced class will include a brief overview of the techniques covered in the basic class and then into the more advanced topics of board attachment, text block repair, corner repair, spine lifting and re-back as well as tissue and coloring. — In order to take this workshop, participants need to have taken Book Restoration or Bookbinding Level I (either virtual or in-person) —
The book along with all additional materials are included, and tools will be provided. Participants may bring their own book if they first get pre-approval.**
Cost per Person*:
Book Restoration Workshop: $100/Adult
Advanced Book Restoration Workshop: $120/Adult
Class size is limited to 6 people. Participants must be over the age of 18.
Length of Class: Typical class lasts about 6 hrs
Lunch: We invite participants to bring a lunch to eat during the workshop. We have a refrigerator available if needed.
*As of April 1st, 2018, pricing will include a service fee that will cover our ticket and credit card processing.
**In order to obtain pre-approval for your book, please email your name, the class you are interested in attending and the following photos of your book to email@example.com
1. Front Cover, 2. Spine, 3. Back Cover, 4. Front Inside Hinge, 5. Back Inside Hinge, 6. Pages that need to be reinserted. The approval process only occurs during business hours and may take a few days.