* indicates prerequisite required


Advanced Clamshell Box Making*
March 26-27, 2015

Advanced Leather Binding Restoration*
April 9-10, 2015

New Cloth Binding Construction
May 21-22, 2015

Introduction to Papermaking
June 11-12
, 2015

Introduction to Book Restoration
June 18-19 or July 23-24 or Aug 20-21, 2015

Fore-Edge Painting & Edge Treatments
July 30-31, 2015

Book Sewing Intensive*
August 6-7, 2015

Advanced Cloth Binding Restoration*
September 10-11 or September 24-25, 2015

Historical Marbled Papers & Pigments
September 21-22, 2015

Beginning Paper Marbling
September 24-25, 2015

Miniature Bookbinding
September 26, 2015

Victorian Box Making & Design
September 28, 2015

Clamshell Box Making
October 15-16, 2015

Introduction to Paper Repair
October 22-23, 2015

* = prerequisite required

Call 540-662-2683
or e-mail to register

All workshops are “hands on.”

Cost of materials included unless otherwise noted.

Full written instructions included for everything taught in workshops.

Spacious, fully equipped teaching facility.

Advance payment of tuition is required.

Cancellations less than seven days prior to the workshop will require that an administrative fee of approximately 20% of the workshop tuition be withheld from the tuition refund.

Instructors with 50+ years combined experience.


Holiday Inn Express 540-667-7050 is located on Route 522 at Route 37 and is about 5 miles from the bindery.

Econo Lodge North 540-662-4700 This is located north of Winchester on Route 37 and is about 6 miles from the bookbindery.

Comfort Inn 540-667-8894 Located on Route 37 north of Winchester near the Econo Lodge.

Courtyard Marriott 540-678-8822  This is south on Rte. 37 at the Rte. 50 interchange and is about 6 miles from us.

Hilton Garden Inn 540-722-8881 This is on the east side of Winchester convenient to I-81 and about a 20 minute drive to the bindery.

Hampton Inn and Conference Center 540-678-4000
Near I-81 on the east side of Winchester and is about a 20 minute drive to the bindery.


School for Bookbinding Arts
Cat Tail Run Hand Bookbinding

Isn't it time you indulged a dream?
Start your bookbinding studies today!


...Come for the week or choose your favorite class...

DATES: Sept. 21 - Sept. 28, 2015

Featuring Guest Artists Regina & Dan St. John
of Chena River Studios, Amherst, Mass.

Historical Marbled Paper Patterns & Pigment Grinding: Sept. 21-22, 2015
Beginning Paper Marbling: Sept. 24-25, 2015
Miniature Books: Creation & Craftsmanship: Sept. 26, 2015
Victorian Box Making & Design: Sept. 28, 2015



Historical Marbled Paper Patterns & Pigment Grinding--September 21-22, 2015 ....Stormont...Glouster...Tiger's Eye...Shell...all historical marbled paper patterns seen frequently on decorative papers from centuries ago. Such marbled patterns are still relevant today in all sorts of craft work including the making of fine bindings and in restoration work where matching period paper patterns is essential.

This class will teach you to reproduce early marbled patterns. As you progress through the different traditional designs, you will utilize additions to the marbling bath such as ox-gall, turpentine, potash, rock alum, soaps, olive oil, and alcohol to create patterns relying more on the use of a stylus rather than combinations of combing. 

You will learn to make paints from traditional pigments and binders incorporating age-old tricks of the trade such as the inclusion of bee's wax as an ingredient. While many modern papers are marbled using acrylic pigments for their ease of use and convenience, marbling of earlier times employed ground pigments from plant and mineral sources. In truth, no acrylic color can ever match the beauty and depth of a marbled paper made using pigments from the earth's paint box.

This course included paint recipes and the sources for obtaining pigments, materials, and equipment in order to set up a marbling space at home. Join us and in our class, become a marbler from centuries ago as you turn out papers with delightful names and delicate turns that only honest pigments can create.

$275 + $50 materials fee...............................Instructors: Regina & Dan St. John 

The $50 studio fee will provide each student with the pigments used within the workshop as well as paper for bringing pigments to life as marbled patterns.

Seen below are examples of (top) Glouster and Tiger's Eye, (below) two different versions of Shell

Sample Patterns from the Beginning Paper Marbling Class:

Beginning Paper Marbling--September 24-25, 2015....You will learn many traditional combed patterns plus the time-honored stone pattern. Everyone may reasonably expect to create 25-35 papers. This course includes numerous extras such as instruction in edge marbling of book pages and marbling on materials other than paper, such as leather or wood.

$275 + $45 materials fee................................Instructors: Regina & Dan St. John


Miniature Books: Creation & Craftsmanship--September 26, 2015....

Miniature books represent a centuries-old tradition in western bookbinding. Don't be tempted to think a book's diminutive size is indicative of a scaled-down binding experience. On the contrary, miniature books offer an unparalleled perspective and avenue of craftsmanship for the beginning and experienced binder alike. Join us in learning a vareity of small book styles plus a host of tips and techniques for crafting miniature bindings that you'll no doubt find useful for working with books of all sizes.

$175 + $30 materials............Instructors: Dan St. John, Anna Barnes



Victorian Box Making and Design--September 28, 2015....

Until the introduction of plastics, paper-board boxes were the norm for housing wares. Everything from pills to petticoats were contained in boxes--often charmingly designed--in all manner of shapes and sizes. In fact, the c.1900 Jacques board shear in the bindery bears a metal plate identifying it as "Paper Box Machinery," for box making was by then its own trade. Our Victorian Box Making and Design course will delve into the structure, design, and history of the lowly but lovely paper-board box. In class, you will make several boxes of your own and be introduced to the techniques and materials you will need to go out and design specialized boxes for holding your own pill and petticoats.

$175 + $30 materials............Instructors: Dan St. John, Jill Deiss

Telephone Cat Tail Run Hand Bookbinding at 540-662-2683 for more information about our courses.



Our series of bookbinding workshops is designed to meet the needs of book dealers, collectors, and those interested in learning the craft of hand bookbinding.


Introduction to Book Restoration -- $235

This course teaches a wide variety of skills that are immediately useful for the repair of cloth & leather bindings and also serves as a foundation for later courses. Techniques taught include: repairing damaged corners, endcaps, and splitting joints; toning of discolorations; improving the surface of leather bindings. Such techniques present unique challenges to the beginning book restorer, and this workshop ensures that students get off to a good start.

This course is a pre-requisite for Advanced Cloth Binding Restoration and for Advanced Leather Binding Restoration.


Introduction to Paper Repair -- $265

Learn basic techniques for the repair of paper, specifically book pages: tear repairs, tape removal, humidifying/flattening crumpled pages, and rebuilding damages signatures. Also included will be a history of paper making and an overview of printing media. No prerequsite.




Advanced Cloth Binding Restoration, "The Cloth Reback" $265

The cloth reback is a significant technique, returning cloth bindings to a condition and look very near to what they were before they fell into disrepair. Beginning Cloth Binding Restoration (offered every June) or Beginning Leather Binding Restoration (offered every July) provides adequate preparation for this workshop. Prerequisite: Introduction to Book Restoration.

Advanced Leather Binding Restoration, "The Leather Reback" $265

The leather reback is the companion repair to the cloth reback, but for leather bindings. Because leather is a very different material from cloth, students will find the leather reback to be another challenging and exciting technique to learn and to master. Prerequisite: Introduction to Book Restoration.



New Cloth Binding Construction $265

Students will learn to construct three different styles of covers (two hard cover styles and one flexible cover style). We teach typesetting with moveable brass type to provide students a Gutenberg-like experience as they set type and title their new bindings. We believe in teaching solid bookbinding technique which allows students to forge a solid skill-set which serves them well as they move to more complex bookbinding structures. No prerequsite.


Clamshell Box Construction $265

Students will learn the craft of creating custom-fit clamshell boxes. We teach the same clamshell box that we make for our clients, featuring perfect tolerances between the box components resulting in a box that will not gape open. We share all the tricks we know to help you make beautiful clamshell boxes that provide optimum storage for their contents. Other styles of protective enclosure are shown and discussed. No prerequsite.


Introduction to Papermaking $265

This class is a must for anyone interested in art, bookbinding and paper. Day 1 teaches traditional paper making, and Day 2 takes students beyond the basics into multi-layer sheets, pigmented papers, and decorative papers.  Students may expect not only to learn to make paper but how to create their own paper making setups at home. No prerequsite.


Fore-Edge Painting & Edge Treatments $265

Fore edge paintings are delightful surprises to find along the page edges of bound books. This art was practiced regularly in the 18th and 19th centuries, with artists such as Watteau crafting delicate paintings hidden from view until such time as the book’s pages are properly flexed.  Learn how it is done along with other page edge treatments including speckling, sponging, and gilding. No prerequisite. 

Book Sewing Intensive $285

Students will learn a wide variety of stitches, styles, and techniques for successful sewing and resewing of book texts. This course will feature instruction in sewing on tapes, sunken cords, raised bands, and slit thong (German-Amish style).  Students will also learn to determine when damaged sewing can be repaired and how to make those repairs. Additionally, instruction will be provided on how to operate a plough for edge trimming. Prerequisite: Introduction to Book Restoration



MASTERS SERIES COURSES (offered on an occasional basis)

Courses in the Masters Series include New Leather Bindings, Leather Reback Intensive, Advanced Clamshell Box Construction, Book Sewing Intensive, and Advanced Titling & Gold Leaf Tooling. Certain prerequisites apply from the Introductory & Advanced Restoration Courses and from the General Bookbinding Courses. Inquire for more information.


The School for Bookbinding Arts is committed to providing quality training in the craft of hand bookbinding. Its ongoing series of two-day workshops is designed to teach techniques that are immediately useful to the student as well as to create a solid foundation of skills for further bookbinding study. The curriculum includes both basic and advanced courses that are geared toward the needs of book dealers, collectors and anyone interested in learning the art of hand bookbinding. Each workshop features demonstrations of the techniques being taught coupled with ample supervised practice time for the student. A complete package of printed notes accompanies each of the workshops to aid the student in assimilating the body of information being presented.

Workshops are taught in the studios of Cat Tail Run Hand Bookbinding near Winchester, Virginia, which is a fully operational hand bookbinding and book restoration facility established in 1991 by Jill Deiss, who serves as the chief instructor for The School for Bookbinding Arts. The teaching staff also includes Dee Evetts, Susan McCabe, Anna Barnes and Victoria Mercer.