ABM is Open!

The city is doing construction on Clementina Street, but don’t be daunted: sidewalks are still open, and so is the Bookbinders Museum. Come visit!

Books and Mud Exhibit Extended

If you thought you missed the Books and Mud exhibit at the Bookbinders Museum, there’s still time. The exhibit has been extended through February 18. 

“Books and Mud: the drowned libraries of Florence,” examines and commemorates the 1966 Florence Flood, the international corps of volunteer “Mud Angels” who came to help, and the tools and techniques that were created to reclaim and restore hundreds of thousands of books and documents devastated by the flood. The flood marks the birth of the modern conservation and restoration movement.

Now, more than ever, the lessons of Florence can not be ignored.

ABM Holiday Schedule

Planning on visiting the Bookbinders Museum over the holidays? Please note the ABM will be closed:

     Saturday, December 24 through Monday, December 26

     Saturday, December 31 through Monday, January 2

All other days we’ll be open for business and giving tours at 10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm.

Looking forward to meeting you!



Holiday Joy, 10% Off

Looking for the perfect gift for the book-lovers on your list? Look no further! The ABM Bookstore has books (of course), apparel, and other gift items ready for purchase. Buy a hoodie, an ABM mug, books on letterpress, binding, book history of various kinds, or one of our limited edition letterpress posters for “Books and Mud,” the Bookbinders Museum’s exhibit on the Florence Flood.

As an extra incentive, Saturdays in December everything in the bookstore is 10% off!




Japanese Paper Trunk Show and Sale

washiWa = Japanese + Shi = Paper :: Washi = Japanese Paper

Washi is the Japanese word for the traditional papers made from the long inner fibers of three plants — gampi, mitsumata, and kozo. As Japan changes with the rest of the world, machines produce similar-looking papers which have qualities very different from authentic handmade washi. Washi is loved by bookbinders, conservators, printmakers, architects and interior designers, book artists, printers, graphic designers and calligraphers.

On October 14 from 2pm – 7pm, come meet Linda Marshall of Washi Arts at the Bookbinders Museum. During this informal drop-in event, learn about how washi is made, what makes washi different from other papers, how to use washi in your work, technical issues with using Japanese papers for conservation and repair, what qualities different papers have and how to identify them, natural and synthetic dyes used to tone and color the paper, and famous artists using washi in their work.

You’ll have an opportunity to see, touch, and feel natural papers made of kozo, gampi, and mitsumata fibers; dyed papers in a range of weights; decorative papers: katazome-shi, chiyogami, Robert Wu and Karen Perinne marbled kozo washi, Madeleine Durham paste paper on kozo washi. Find out about konnyaku powder used to give washi added strength and a cloth-like consistency; kakishibu to dye and waterproof washi; bamboo tools for folding, creasing, and scoring; and Japanese iron awls for stab binding.

This opportunity to see, buy, and/or order washi, and to seek recommendation and advice from a recognized washi expert, is not to be missed!

Washi Arts is a retail partner of the Japanese Paper Palce, which houses the world’s largest selection of Japanese papers under one roof. Linda Marshall established Washi Arts to provide exceptional washi to book artists and bookbinders; the goal of Washi Arts is to inspire artists and artisans to use this precious material to enhance their work and spark creativity.


ABM Closed for a Private Event October 3-7

It’s Dreamforce time in the SOMA area, and the Bookbinders Museum will be closed for the week for a special rental event. We’ll be open again on Saturday, October 8 from 10 – 4pm, and for the first evening event of Litquake at 6:30. Hope to see you there!

Visiting the ABM this week

oracleIf you’re thinking of visiting the Bookbinders Museum this week (and we hope you are), please know that the annual Oracle meeting has taken over Moscone Center (all three buildings), as well as Howard Street between 3rd and 4th Streets. The usual flow of traffic–particularly on public transit–may be disrupted. 

As always, the best access to the ABM is from 5th Street, turning on to Clementina. 

We look forward to seeing you!


American Publishers’ Bindings at the Rare Book School

I was looking for someone, and I had been here before.

Staring down the long aisle, I blinked hard, and looked at the slip of paper in my hand. A bunch of letters and numbers, written in pencil. A call number. I squinted at my own jagged vertical printing. “Is that an S, or a 5?” I thought. Was this even going to work? Last time, I came up empty. What was I doing?


Litquake at the ABM

We’re very excited to announce the slate of events that the American Bookbinders Museum will be hosting this year. 

October 8: Chaos Monkeys of Silicon Valley

October 9: Riding Out Doomsday: Michelle Tea with Daniel Handler

October 10: Science Fact: Better than Fiction

October 11: Prestigious Prose: Pulitzer Conversations

October 12: America the Ingenious: Kevin Baker in Conversation

October 13: Striking Distance: Bruce Lee in the Bay Area

For information on Litquake, the full schedule of Litquake Events, details on the ABM-hosted events, or tickets, check out the Litquake website.


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