Cris Clair Takacs
Chardon, Ohio


Born in Toledo, Cris Clair Takacs studied art and English at Ohio University before beginning independent study of bookbinding in 1980. In 1987, Takacs worked with Jan and Jarmilla Sobota in their studio. Currently, she operates Books Bound & Repaired in Chardon, Ohio.

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Proposal

The two shades of calf represent two colors of skin. Moser plates will be pressed into the dampened lighter calf to make the images. The red leather inlay is the Mississippi. Red is blood and race which branches like the story. The line disappears on the back cover, the “West,” where Huck goes at the end of the book. The author will take us there. The only word on the binding is the blind tooled “Cairo,” Jim’s goal. The story is told by Huck, but it is Jim’s story. The endpapers are the river churned by a paddlewheeler.

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Example

John Bradford (pseudonym). The Poetical Vagaries of a Knight of the Folding-Stick of Paste-Castle. Woodcut by Deb Steytler. Valparaiso, IN: Sandlin’s Books & Bindery, 1993.

Bradford was a member of the “Order of the Blue String” of the Society of the Garrett, Gotham, 1815. Endpapers and inlays are woodblock prints depicting the secret script of the “Society” and the Knight of the Folding-Stick, a creature fashioned from binding tools. The binding is sewn on five cords with an attached spine and two-board cover. Headbands are sewn silk.