Who are they and what do they do? The bookbinder's task is to make, repair or restore books, especially book covers, and possibly other forms of written art.
What are the activities of the job? The main activities are: preparation of bookmaker's glue - cutting paper - bookbinding for individual customers or industry, work by hand or on semiautomatic or fully automatic machines - manual restoration of bookbinding - decoration of bound books on presses or manually - making leather or semi-leather book covers - producing artistically demanding books or similar products on computer controlled programmable automatic production lines - binding periodicals - making diaries, decorated boxes or cases - setting up, operation and maintenance of bookbinding machines. Experienced and qualified bookbinders can also work on the conservation of all kinds of books, documents, cases, written material of historic or artistic value, bound for example in leather, parchment, silk, velour etc.
Where is it done and under what conditions? The work is done in bookbinding shops of large printing enterprises as well as in small shops, where to some extent noisiness, dust and the effects of some chemicals can be expected.
What tools/equipment do they use? The most frequently used tools are implements for cutting or engraving, bookbinding presses, cutting presses, scissors, gluing fixtures, other (hand held) bookbinding tools and automatic production lines - and, of course, skilful hands.
What do you need to succeed? Vocational training, aesthetic sense, patience, accuracy, craft skill, good eyesight, especially at short range, and a feeling for colours.