David Sellars' Editions

In addition to the ‘Specials’ created for a variety of Small Presses, I choose certain books so that I can develop the themes of my designs. 


These rarely number more than six and although each designed binding is based on the same principles, each is a unique variant.


The latest development is a book wholly created by Jill and myself.  We are so pleased with the result that we intend to follow this with further projects.

By David and Jill Sellars

An edition of 6 miniature books produced by David and Jill Sellars.


Illustrated with suminagashi images by Jill, words printed on old English hand made paper.
Text composed of words which resonate with the images.

The spines of the bindings are covered in grey Harmatan goatskin, titled in black with side panels of David’s salt paper.
The front boards inlaid with a disc of emulsified white leather dust, the back boards inlaid with vellum, design is by David.
Endpapers of oil marbled papers by Jill. 
Presented in a clamshell box.


Jill has been exploring suminagashi for some years and having discovered its meditative qualities she related these works to the ancient Oriental traditions of ‘scholars’ stones. In China known as ‘gonshi’ and in Japan ‘suiseki’, these are naturally occurring rocks which are studied for their ‘suggestability’ - they suggest something to the viewer, but not as a precise miniature representation of the object. 


‘Oracle bones’ are the earliest examples of Chinese writing, dating from c. 1200 bc,
so called because the writing deals with divination and is carved on bone.



No1 in the edition was donated to the Society of Bookbinders on the occasion of David and Jill’s 60th birthdays
which happened to coincide with the Warwick conference, August 2009




By Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Translated by Philip Wayne

Simon King Press, 1995



Night finds Faust in his study pondering on his life and pursuits. 
The design attempts to reflect his passion for alchemy.  The natural goat dyed to a flesh tone forms a backdrop to alchemical
imagery which also refers to his conflict, caused by eschewing the physical for the pursuit of the isolated, scholarly path. 
The bands across the spine allow for a reference to the book and book shelves in a study.


Goatskin, ink, transfer printed and graphite edges, gold and coloured tooling.


Proposed as a limited edition of six, unique variants


(Above: Book shown with its presentation box)