This picture show relatively basic medieval book binding, in which quires are stitched together and to the cover:
In this example, the binding is more advanced (note the coloured stitching around the end):
Book covers could include clasps to hold the book closed:
Covers ranged from fairly plain to very elaborate:
For my own manuscript I decided to keep it as simple as possible, because I did not have suitable equipment at hand. I had neither thread nor needle, so I decided to use relatively thick twine (which is perhaps more authentically medieval anyway!).
I wanted to stitch the quires together using this sort of cross-stitch technique:
Lacking a needle, I used a wooden skewer to punch holes in the backs of the quires, and then threaded the twine through by hand:
It took some doing, and the result was inevitably not too neat. For the cover I followed a procedure based on that followed in some early medieval Coptic codices, which is to simply glue the cover to the outer pages of the manuscript in this way:
I made a simple cover from cardboard, then tightened up my cross stitching and glued the cover on:
Not the most sophisticated of books, but I learned quite a bit in the whole process.
Other parts in this series: