Learn to make a longstitch book at Winona Arts Center


The Winona Arts Center will hold a book arts workshop titled: “Design and Make a Longstitch Book” on May 18, from 12:30–5:30 p.m., at 228 East Fifth Street, for adults (and patient, dexterous sixth through 12th graders).

The longstitch book is elaborate and beautiful, yet fairly easy to make. Sewing through the cover leaves the stitches visible on the spine. Straight long stitches and diagonal or circular chain stitches hold the book together and adorn the cover. An additional weaving with separate thread over the long stitches and piercing the cover enhances the decoration. Attendees will learn about the opportunities this binding offers for innovative pattern-making and design along the spine. Then, you can design your own sewing for your book (or use one of the designs provided if you’d rather).

Longstitch books, both printed and blank, were made in Europe between 1400 and 1600. Historically, they have covers of leather or vellum with a plate of horn, wood, or stiff leather creating a rigid spine. These books often have a fore-edge flap extending from the back cover to the front and held in place with ties. Finished books make durable and flexible journals: the pages lay flat and there is space to add photos and ephemera. By the end of the workshop you’ll have one finished book and the skills to make this binding at home. All materials and tools needed plus an illustrated handout with step-by-step instructions will be provided.

The cost is $40 for WAC members or $45 for non-members plus $8 for materials. Non-members are welcome to become Winona Arts Center members. The instructor is Jill Krase. Register by calling Krase at 507-450-1231 or emailing jill@ovenbirdbindery.com.


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