I had the opportunity to learn a 14th century binding style in a workshop Oct 23-26. Using signatures that were sewn over alum-tawed leather thongs, we made a cover for this binding from calfskin vellum. Vellum is a term that is often interchangeable with parchment, but usually parchment refers to goat/sheepskin and vellum to calfskin. Vellum was used for many things, including covers for texts. After centuries of use, it came to replace papyrus as the preferred writing surface. Only when paper became readily available was vellum replaced for writing and printing purposes.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007 1:39 pm