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Color photograph of two bookbinding needles, one straight and one curved along side a handmade book, near Denver

I had the opportunity to teach a bookbinding workshop at my friend’s place in Mississippi. The binding I taught is very complicated so I decided to make a workbook to outline each step. I wanted this to be a skill my students could go home and replicate.

Some 50 hours later I birthed a comprehensive workbook on the Coptic binding that has been in my head and at my fingertips for the last 20 years. I tried to find a tutorial to use as a skeleton and no one else seems to sew the Coptic stitch quite like this.

a color photograph showing a handmade coptic bound book opening completly flat near Denver, Colorado

I love this binding because the book naturally opens flat. Coptic bound books make really great sketch books and photo albums. The binding is sewn without any adhesive which makes Coptic binding very durable. Most paperback books are glued into a text block, without any sewing. It is very difficult to repair a paperback book who’s spine has been cracked. Once that glue breaks, it’s pretty much over. Coptic binding is my perfect binding.

a color photograph showing the inside binding of a handmade coptic bound book made in Denver, Colorado

In my Mississippi class everyone was having a blast gluing the paper to the covers and poking the holes in each signature. Then came the real challenge- sewing to the covers. It’s tough, counter intuitive the first time or two- but well worth it once your book is done and beautiful.

a color photograph showing the endsheet of a handmade coptic bound book near Denver, Colorado

I plan to teach a class here in Denver some time soon. I’ve considered approaching the library to see if I can teach in their new maker space… I would probably teach simple bindings and ways to print your own book using your desktop printer. I’ll get the word out soon.

Products: Coffee Table, a proof

Isn’t a coffee table book just a big person’s picture book? I love illustrated children’s books, some of the art blows me away, not to mention the rhythm and rhyme. I have a few coffee table books, two I purchased last year. I should share them with you here.  Both are amazing.  I need more.
This summer I photographed this little family. These kids are lucky to have two amazing matriarchs in their lives. The past couple days I’ve worked on this album proof, remembering all the personalities raging and crashing into each other.
I hope mom gets a minute this weekend to take a look and hopefully give me an ok.
When I photograph a Documentary Session, this book is included.
Wanna see what it looks like on a coffee table?  Gimme a couple weeks and it’ll be here. #albumProof #denverphotographer #coloradophotographer #documentaryphotographer #familyphotographer

Christmas Cards… it’s that time of year again!

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Ok, so November is upon us. “Can’t escape November.”– The Office

I have been asked by the few folks I have photographed this season what I do for Christmas card orders. Well, typically I am told which images a client would like for the card and I create something unique.

I’ve been doing a bit of research and I saw a “newspaper” used for a family newsletter. I found a site with a list of the best newspaper design and got inspired to create this:

I’d like to see what could be done for a folded cards’ interior pages (this example is for a 5×7 flat card). What do you think? Are there any designs out there you would like to see offered by Stacie Smith Photography?

Below is what I have uploaded to the card ordering section of all photo galleries to help you choose your favorite card design. You may also have me design something completely custom. Just choose your images and card size and I’ll run with it, showing you proofs each step of the way.

The NEW Brag Book

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I’ve got 11 images in this tiny thing. These are perfect for any pocket or purse and have also been seen displayed on this mom’s desk at the office.

These come in sets of three identical books. You may purchase just one little book, but the cost per book is quite a bit more. There are several cover choices (along with a faux leather). There are also several paper choices, you’ll have to ask me to see some samples of these.

I am excited to offer these since back in the day I would make accordion books for my wedding clients. I was always using nice ribbon to tie the books closed. But to keep them pretty, you’ve got to know how to tie a nice bow, and never ever tie a tight knot. I was always trying to think of an alternative. Velcro, or something more stream-lined. These babies use magnets and clamp shut on their own. Very cool.

As with most things I make, each set of mini albums will be slightly customized. I’ll be adding something pretty to the front of each. Like this fleur de lis. It helps to know which side is up.