How to Become a Bookbinder

Many people believe that in the world of books and publishing there are only two or three kinds of professions such as the writers, publishers, and editors. This cannot be farther from the truth. Publishing is a huge industry that employs people for dozens of different jobs. One of them is bookbinder, often an overlooked profession that publishing could actually not exist without. So today, we’ll give some special attention to bookbinding and tell you all about how you can become one if that is something that interests you. 

What does a bookbinder do?

For those of you who don’t know, a bookbinder does… Well, exactly what the name suggests – he binds books. He does this by matching up paper that has already been cut by a machine and then gluing or stapling them together.

This sounds easier than it really is, but you have to consider the number of books one bookbinder finishes in a workday, as well as the fact that most of them do all of the steps by hand and use quality materials that are sometimes difficult to work with. Sometimes, depending on the type of book, a bookbinder would also add some decoration or fancy lettering to the book or to the spine and make it even more unique. Also, again depending on the type of the book, a bookbinder would do some book reparations. 

How do you become a bookbinder?

Luckily, you can become a bookbinder without studying literature or art or anything like that. You don’t even need a university degree if you don’t want to attend university. You probably couldn’t even learn all of the bookbinding skills at a university anyway. Instead what you need are some bookbinding courses or a professional bookbinder who can teach you the craft. If you don’t have anyone to learn from, I suggest visiting YouTube and seeing what you can find over there. There are a lot of people talking about bookbinding, materials, and proper techniques who can help you immensely. However, the biggest learning phase happens when you start practicing yourself, running into issues, finding solutions, etc. You have to practice a lot to become a great bookbinder and eventually open up your own company. 

What skills are needed for bookbinding?

If you want to be successful at your job, you need to pay close attention to detail since this is very important when binding a book. A small mistake could mean that the book will fall apart in two days, and you do not want that. You should also be creative and try different things for different clients so that you give them the feeling of being unique. Also, if you are working for yourself, you should have good business management skills, know how to budget properly, and have great communication skills so that you attract customers.