Miniature Books from the Alembic Press

The Alembic Press produces one or two miniature books each year, alongside its range of larger format books, wood type cards, etc. These miniature books by definition are not more than 3 inches in size. All the books are printed by letterpress on acid-free paper, using metal or wood type. The type for the texts is usually set by hand, although some of the recent books have been typeset using the Press's Monotype equipment. Recent books are shown below, with some rather low definition images to give a rough idea of the book:

Title page Te Deum Laudamus

The Solemn Tone from the Sarum Psalter, with three wood engravings by Simon Brett. Hand set in Deberny's 20pt didot plainchant music type and with the text hand set in Caslon's 6pt Kennerley.
28pp.  2" x 3".  100 copies. Now out of print.
An inside page
A Small Piece of Action

Action rhymes in the style of a chapbook, hand set in 10pt Caslon Old Style and illustrated with stock blocks

18pp. 3"x2". 120 copies. UK£5.
An inside page 
A Spring Garden

An informal diary containing notes about an English garden in Spring, illustrated with hand-coloured line drawings by Muriel Mallows, and typeset in 9 on 10pt Old Style.
Front cover The book is in five sections that each fold out to reveal a different garden vista, and it is bound in Monet's Garden pastepaper covered boards. Partly folded out pages
20pp. approx 2¾" x 2¾". 100 copies. Now out of print.
A Summer Garden

A sequel to Spring Garden, and again illustrated by Muriel Mallows, with type set in 9 on 10pt Old Style.
Partly folded out, showing poppy Accordian folded to open out along four different directions as one walks down the garden path. The opened book builds up to a large linocut of a poppy on the reverse.

16pp. approx 2¾" x 2¾". 100 copies. Now out of print.
Front cover
A Tiny Ten Double page spread  

A single section counting book, again in chapbook style, and illustrated with stock blocks and dingbats. Hand set in 48pt Gill Light Italic.

32pp. 3" x 2". 120 copies. UK£5.
Front cover A Granjon Arabesque This miniature book explores Monotype Arabesque units 310-315. The text is set in 9 on 10pt Old Style, and the book is bound in concertina sections, in a printed pattern paper cover. See further details.
72pp. 2¾" x 2½". 140 copies UK£36.
An Autumn Garden

The third of the seasonal books about the events in an English garden, with hand coloured illustrations by Muriel Mallows, and with prints direct from autumn leaves.
Part fallen pages The book is constructed as a Jacob's Ladder of leaves in the fall. Set in 9 on 10pt Old Style.

16pp. approx 2¾" x 2¾". 100 copies. Now out of print.
Front cover

Six 6-line Wood Type Alphabets
A boxed set of six different wood letter alphabets, with an accompanying abcedarium on typographic subjects. Set in 6 line wood type, as follows
The boxed set of six 1: Old Style Italic - an ABC of type designers
2: Playbill - an ABC of typefaces
3: Round Serif - an ABC of typefounders
4: Sans Condensed - an ABC of typographic terms
5: Winchester Condensed - an ABC of typefounding terms
6: Sans Bold Italic - an ABC of parts of the press.

Each volume 32pp. 3" x 2¾". 100 boxed sets. Now out of print.
An inside page
A Winter Garden

The last of the seasonal books about the events in an English garden, with eight hand coloured etchings by Muriel Mallows Page form Winter Garden Set in 9 on 10pt Old Style.

40pp. approx 2¾" x 2¾". 100 copies. Now out of print.
A flag book inspired by the recent archaeological excavation around the site of a Roman amphitheatre at the edge of the village of Marcham. The book features an accordian folded spine, with 24 flags in different colours of paper and with different type faces representing some of the finds, followed by a 4 page sewn section of explanatory text which is set in 8pt Gill. The book is housed in a stiff paper pocket sleeve.
The flagged finds .
approx 2¾" x 2¾".

100 copies.

Now out of print.
Front cover
MOpened book Maddie's fourth birthday book, accordian folded in the shape of an M. Bound in black flock boards in a gold paper case. Text set in 18pt Caslon Ronde and assorted M from various founts. 10pp. 3" x 3". 50 copies. Now out of print.
A Screw Story

Opened bookA book featuring type cast from a collection of matrices of screw shapes, etc., that originated with Guest, Keen & Nettlefolds in the 1960s and 1970s. Matrices
Text set in 8pt Gill Sans.
60pp. 27/8" x 1¾". 60 copies. UK£48.
A Petticoat Tale

Page spreadA story for Maddie's fifth birthday, being about a princess and her petticoats. Two hand coloured line drawings. Lace frill on the pink cover, purple type within, sewn on to yellow threads.Cover
Text set in 10pt Gloucester Bold Italic.
16pp. 2¾" x 2¾". 60 copies. UK£15.
A Paper Alphabet
An accordian-folded book for Madeleine's sixth birthday, with nine pull-out tabs that reveal one-word descriptions. Bound in turquoise cloth with a ribbon tie. Text set in 60pt Mole Foliate and 8pt Gill.

10pp. 1" x 2". 40 copies. Now out of print.
CoverAn alphabet book with words based on different uses of paper, with various samples of these uses built in.
Japanese paper covers, with a Japanese binding.
Text set in 18pt Koch Antiqua and 12pt Koch Cursiv.
Cover and spread
 34pp. 3" x 2¾". 48 copies. Now out of print.
Paper Cranes 
CoverA book about the bird and its origami image. Illustrated with stock blocks and a watercolour, and complete with origami crane.
Text set in 10pt Perpetua.
29pp. 2¼" x 2¾". 44 copies. UK£30.
Page spread
Also Available
Why is Robert Smiling?A first birthday book for Robert. Illustrated with stock blocks. Set in 18pt Bembo.
16pp. 2¼ x 3 ins. 36 copies. UK£5.
Eddie's Wheel BookA first birthday book for Eddie. Illustrated with stock blocks. Set in 14pt Gill.
12pp. 2¾ x 2½ ins. 40 copies. UK£5.
Emma's AlphabetA first birthday book for Emma. Illustrated with stock blocks. Set in 14pt Gill and Gill Bold.
26pp. 2½ x 2 ins. 30 copies. UK£5.
A Little Drop of WaterA second birthday book for Natalia. Set in 18pt Spectrum and illustrated with stock blocks.
12pp. 2¾ x 3 ins. 40 copies. UK£5.

This page last updated by D.Bolton on 28 October 2010