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Heike Felber in the creative workshop

This interview was conducted by Michéle Minelli from Schreibwerk | East carried out:

Dear Heike, how did you come to love bookbinding?

It all started because, in addition to my full-time job, I wanted to do something that was created with my hands and that at the end I had something in my hand that wouldn't disappear when I put the laptop away.

I have always loved writing on paper with fountain pens, ballpoint pens and fineliners. While googling on the Internet about 7 years ago, I came across sites where cards, notebooks and books were designed by hand. I found this so fascinating that I was bitten by paper fever. This was followed by many YouTube videos and books with which I taught myself how to bind books and notebooks.

You only make unique pieces and don't do series production - why?

It is important to me that the products handcrafted in my studio are unique and special to the end owner.

I only buy small quantities of the same fabric and process it; I rarely buy the same fabric again. There are so many great prints. I buy most of my fabrics locally in Manchester. My daughter lives there, I'm looking forward to when we can go shopping together again in Manchester. Manchester is the origin, that's why I use decorative fabrics for the books and blocks. On one visit we were in a huge shop with fantastic fabrics, I couldn't resist and had to pick some up and try out binding books with them and as you can see it worked.

I use high-quality decorative fabrics with different patterns. Depending on how I cut the fabric, it will look different on the notebook.

The same applies to the printed papers, I only buy small quantities of the notebooks; when they are processed there is something new again.

The exception is the new monochrome notebooks, there will be a small base over time, but always bound with a different colored thread.

It's about self-worth. You are worthy of having something unique.

What are you working on right now?

Together with my daughter Julia Felber, who studied visual communication, we are designing our first canvas for the new "Autumn Garden" collection.
She has just opened her own small business MellowApricotStudio .

Do you also work to order?

Yes, I accept customer orders, notebooks, cases, covers for notebooks, notebooks etc.

If you like a notebook but don't have the right fabric, you can call me and we'll look for something suitable from my fabric warehouse together. I'm happy to handle such orders via WhatsApp if someone can't come to the workshop.

What is the most special thing about your shop?

Mhh, that's a good question, since they're all my own creations and I really enjoy them all, it's hard for me to decide. At the moment it is the new covers for the notebooks that are very well received, so I can make new ones again.

The writing papers I use come from a Swedish paper factory that has been producing beautiful papers since 1693. It is a traditional company that passes down paper production from generation to generation.

What else would you like to say that is important for authors?

I think that texts, stories, ideas and sketches should be recorded in beautiful books. It's a pleasure to write by hand in a beautiful book and on fine paper.

Thank you very much for this conversation!

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