Thursday, March 29, 2012

Book Sizes

Scale of the American Library Association

Size NameSymbolOutside Height*Appx Size in Inches*
folioFover 30 cm12 x 19
quartoQ25-30 cm9½ x 12
octavoO20-25 cm6 x 9
   imperial octavoO-8¼ x 11½
   super octavoO-7 x 11
   royal octavoO-6½ x 10
   medium octavoO-6 1/8 x 9¼
   crown octavoO-5 3/8 x 8
duodecimoD17.5-20 cm5 x 7 3/8
duodecimo (large)D17.5-20 cm5½ x 7½
sextodecimoS15-17.5 cm4 x 6¾
octodecimoT12.5-15 cm4 x 6½
trigesimo-segundoTt10-12.5 cm3½ x 5½
quadrasegisimo-octavoFe7.5-10 cm2½ x 4
sexagesimo-quartoSfless than 7.5 cm2 x 3
*Outside height refers to the head-to-foot dimension of the book's cover
*Approximate Size refers to the front cover's rectangular dimensions

The common book-trade designation of sizes was originally related to a sheet of handmade paper measuring 19 X 25 inches, which was the common size of the papermaking mold. When folded to 8 leaves, or 16 pages, and trimmed, each was 6½ X 9¼ inches, approximately, and was the standard dimension of an 8vo. When folded to make 16 leaves, or 32 pages, it was a 16 mo. With the present great variety of paper sizes, all dimensions are by necessity only approximate. (52, 69, 140, 156, 169) 

British book sizes

Size NameOctavo SizeQuarto Size
pott 6¼ by 4 8 by 6¼
foolscap 6¾ by 4¼ 8¼ by 6¾
crown 7½ by 5 1O by 7½
large crown 8 by 5¼ 10½ by 8
large post 8¼ by 5¼ 10¼ by 8¼
demy 8¾ by 5 5/8 11¼ by 8¾
post 8 by 5 10 by 8
small demy 8½ by 5 5/8 11¼ by 8½
medium 9 by 5¾ 11½ by 9
small royal 9¼ by 6 1/8 12¼ by 9¼
royal 10 by 6¼ 12½ by 10
super royal 10¼ by 6¾ 13½ by 10¼
imperial 11 by 7½ 15 by 11

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

PROP: Victor Frankenstein's Journal

From Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

Dimensions: 8 x 10 x 1.5
Cover: Leather with stamped initial.
Closure: Frog-Tie (wooden bead and loop)

I've been trying to find some good screen-caps of the journal of the main character of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein for years so I finally grabbed some on my own.

The pages look to be of a thick, good quality that have been ripped on the edges as though from a larger sheet. A common practice for books at that time period.

The journal is held together by a pair of frog-ties on the front cover. The frogs (the things that are used to fit within the loop on the back cover) appear to be little more than just a wooden or ceramic bead that's held in place on a thin cord.

The big question for the book is to figure out its dimensions. Usually I'm able to gauge the size of a prop (a book prop) is to get a shot of someone holding the book and extrapolate the height and width based on the breadth of the person's hand. Usually, the breadth of a man's hand is between 3 and 3.5 inches wide.

So if I can assume that the actor's hand is a close approximation to the standard, then I can deduce that the book is about 9 or 10 inches high. So it's just slightly smaller than a standard piece of paper (8.5 x 11 inches).

So then I looked at the width of the book and I would guess that it's about 8 inches wide based on the observation that the actor's knuckles (usually 4-5 inches across since they're thicker than the fingers) cover about half of the cover in the screen-cap below.
I then was able to notice that the spine of the book, though it is a leather cover, is marked with several ridges as though the cords of the spine were showing through. This would suggest that the book block (the actual pages) has five cords.

I can't see any headbands / footbands on the edge of the journal so it's not impossible that the binder didn't use them. For journals like this it would not be uncoming to leave that element off as it would make it more difficult to unbind the pages later.

Simple, leather-covered journals like this would often be unbound and all of the 'good' pages (as opposed to all of the scribbles and doodles that were basically worthless) could be rebound in another book.
The journal's cover shows the frog-tie closure as well as a large 'V' within a circle that appears to be either burned or stamped into the leather.

BOOK: Burnt-Paper Cover

This is a paper-covered book that I added small bits of scorched paper as a decorative element. The spine of the book was covered in leather. I made it small - as an experiment to see if I liked the burnt-paper look - so it's only the size of a "Brick".

The book was created in the summer of 2011.

BOOK: Paper-Covered Book

This was a standard, 'brick' that I covered with decorative "scrap booking" paper and used a complimentary-colored paper for the spine.

The book was completed in Summer 2011

COVER: Leather Journal Cover

Occasionaly I will make some leather covers for a pre-bound journal. I'm a sucker for those black-covered sketchbooks that you can find at almost any art-supply store. I use them for everything. A while back I took some leather and built a wrap-around cover for them (so I can just pull a full journal and replace it with another, blank one) and added a long, leather tie and a small fob in the shape of a fly that I made out of FIMO clay.

TERM: Cover

See also:

Cloth Cover
Leather Cover
Leather Spine
Paper Spine
Paper Cover

TERM: Closure

See also:

Leather Tie
Frog Tie
Peg and Loop

TERM: Frog-Tie