Bookmaking Part 2: Fabric Lining

[Part of a series on my bookmaking internship at Kyujanggak this Spring.]

In a previous post, I wrote about the process of lining dyed hanji with thinner hanji to make thick multi-ply paper for book covers. In this post, I will discuss the process of lining fabrics with hanji. The process is slightly more complicated.

lining hemp cloth
Getting ready to line a piece of hemp cloth

First of all, as mentioned previously, paste used for lining fabric should be pretty thick.

thick paste

The first step: Because fabric shrinks when moisture is added, tiny diagonal cuts are made on opposite edges of the selvedge to give the fabric more flexibility. This step can be seen in both the drawing and photo below.

The following steps I didn’t quite get on camera, but you can follow along with my drawings:







My drawings for step 9 are pretty horrendous, so I will demonstrate this step via photos:

step 9
Place and adhere stick on top of one edge of the paper
step 9b
Lift paper off the surface
step 9c
Gently and carefully lay the paper pasted-side down onto the fabric with one hand while quickly brushing up and down with the other hand

The final step is to make sure the paper is well affixed to the fabric by brushing the paper vigorously and then tamping the entire surface thoroughly with a tamping brush. You can place a piece of protective interfacing like bondina over the paper before tamping. Then lift the lined fabric and place on a surface to dry. (Note: since this is the first lining, the lined fabric can dry slowly and naturally on a flat surface. But when adding subsequent linings, the fabric should be affixed to a drying board to dry flat.)

drying on board
Lined fabrics drying on a board on the floor

The following week, we added a second layer of hanji to the indigo-dyed silks, which had already been lined once.

As shown above, it is important to provide plenty of moisture to the lined fabric and make sure it is evenly damp and that the surface is brushed flat before proceeding.

The rest of the process is very similar to lining a piece of hanji, since the fabric has already been lined once with hanji. Once the second lining has been thoroughly affixed to the lined fabric, narrow strips of hanji are attached and pasted up on all four sides and then affixed to the drying board:

Make sure to leave a little unpasted tab (see top right) so that once the lined fabric is dry, you can more easily detach it from the drying board.

The following week we checked the thickness/stiffness of the lined indigo-dyed silks and decided to add a third layer.

lined indigo silks
Lined indigo-dyed silk and hanji

This is the hemp cloth after one lining; we decided to add a second layer:

lined sambe
Hemp cloth (삼베) lined with hanji

Once the fabrics were lined with enough layers of hanji, they were ready to be trimmed down and used to make book covers.


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