Artist Creates Hand-bound Copy of ‘The Silmarillion’

Back in August I did a post on the ‘Edel Silmarillion’ as created by Benjamin Harff, a recently graduated German art student, who decided to create a hand illuminated version of The Silmarillion for his final project.

Now another artist is lending their touch to The Silmarillion.

Heather Stevick fell in love with the art of bookbinding after taking a History of Print class at Carleton College and has since moved on to the North Bennet Street School where she has learned more about the importance of books through history. Her love for the craft of and skill in bookbinding clearly shows in a hand-bound copy of The Silmarillion that she has posted about in her blog over at BookwyrmBound

Hand-bound copy of the The Silmarillion by Heather Stevick

Hand-bound copy of the ‘The Silmarillion’ by Heather Stevick

The leather cover of her copy of The Silmarillion features the Two Trees, Telperion and Laurelin, each done in silver leaf and imitation gold leaf respectively. The fruits of each tree, however, are created using palladium and gold, materials that will not easily tarnish over time as the silver and imitation gold will. This was done deliberately.

“When I re-read the book in preparation for binding it, I was struck by the theme of decay, and so I wanted that to be represented in my binding. I decided to make use of materials that will tarnish over time…

…Over time, the book will literally enact the destruction of the Two Trees. But the flower in Telperion’s branches and the fruit in Laurelin’s are tooled in palladium and gold, respectively, so they will stay bright. In the book, this last fruit and flower become the Sun and the Moon.”

But she didn’t stop there. Heather Stevick also incorporated the theme of the Silmarils along the three edges of the book: “one in the airs of heaven, and one in the fires of the heart of the world, and one in the deep waters” as written by Tolkien.

Decorated edge of a hand-bound copy of The Silmarillion created by Heather Stevick

Decorated edge of a hand-bound copy of ‘The Silmarillion’ created by Heather Stevick

To see more photos of the book and how she created it as well as how she created the tools to write “Silmarillion” in elvish Tengwar on the spine, please head over to her blog at BookwyrmBound


  1. Freddy says:

    Why, oh why are there so beautiful books not to buy or not to afford?
    I’ve never seen a better, more mysterious looking book than this!

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