Connect with the ornate world of yesteryear with this stately gold on black geometric design.

Reproducing an expensive goatskin leather book binding crafted in Amsterdam in 1835 by Friedrich W.J.C. Kolb, our new Onyx journal celebrates the harmony between art and science. The binding was originally designed to contain a Latin oration on the physiology of plants by the renowned Dutch botanist Willem Hendrik de Vriese (1806–1862). De Vriese was a member of the Royal Dutch Institute of Sciences, Literature and Fine Arts and, in his studies, named many species of plants in the Asterales order (Asterids).

Science and art have long found a common ground in Dutch history, with artists from the Netherlands pioneering the form of still life, so there is little wonder why this significant binding can be found in the KB, National Library of the Netherlands. Founded in 1798, the library celebrates the written word and shares Dutch creativity and innovation with the world.

Pictured here: Onyx hardcover journal

In recreating this antique binding, the challenge for our Graphics team was to keep the rich black, textured background, while enhancing the highlights and red details, contrasting their delicate beauty with the symmetrical gold lines. The Paperblanks artists designed the spine of these new hardcover journals by taking different elements from the original binding to mimic the balance of the front cover and to fit the new format in a natural way. The addition of subtle gold foil and spot gloss was just enough to maintain the elegance of the original, without overdoing it.

We are honoured to partner with the KB, National Library to bring this beautiful binding to the Paperblanks collection as part of our Asterales series. Onyx is available as a mini, midi and ultra hardcover journal.


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