This book form was invented by the Coptic monks in Egypt, back in the 10th & 11th centuries. Churches were built mainly underground due to the heat, and because trees were scarce, paper was also scarce. Books were constructed from vellum and sinew, and the covers were huge pieces of wood, and even metal. So a different kind of binding had to be used.
With Coptic books, the covers are separate, and attached to the pages with chain and kettle stitches.
If you are interested in making one yourself, check out my tutorial in my Etsyshop.
4 miniature books
A group of coptic journals I've made
Bingo - coptic stitch, sewn over tapes
Rainbow coptic book
Bejewelled miniatre book closeup
2in x 4in, mountboard covers
Gold on white with resin decal
Travel - closeup
Blue for Sue - made as a present
Recycled covers from a vintage Ready Reckoner, bound over tapes and using a Coptic stitch
The groups of pages (signatures) can have outer wrappers, if you want a bit of contrast. You're designing and building the book, so mix it up all you want!
Inner pages don't have to be all the same either, so mix up a bit of vintage, some leger pages, old maps, music - have fun with it!
Champion Book for Girls
Upcycled, repurposed children's annual circa 1940s. This was torn, crumpled - but the covers were fine, so very useable. This was reborn into a brand new journal!
Champion Book for Girls
A vintage children's annual, where I've upcyled and repurposed the covers. The pages are a mix of some of the original pages, vintage sheet music, watercolour paper etc
Again, I used the original covers. These determined the theme and the content. If you are interested, go to the journal gallery and you'll find a link to the artwork inside.
Block Print Coptic journal
Block printed onto fabric. The top book is a Kiss journal, the bottom one is the Coptic book - same piece of fabric, totally different effect! This one is all watercolour papers.
A4 sketchook, where I've used my own paste papers for the cover with watercolour papers inside. I've used lots of texture: stencils, acrylics, modelling paste - and a lot of my hand drawn and painted images.
Rose coptic journal
A pretty journal, very Shabby Chic - scrapbook papers over book board (AKA chipboard, Davey board) which is 2mm thick, very substantial. I also used vintage photos, mulberry paper flower embellishements etc