Girdle book (part 2)

Here are some fotos I recently took in St. Annen Museum in Lübeck:

Its the Altar of the "Gertrudenbruderschaft der Träger" (Gertrud brotherhood of the porters) from 1509 and it shows St. Anne and the Holy Kinship. Two of St. Annes relatives are carrying a girdle book :-)
Here you can see the two possible methods in "wearing" a girdle book - in your hand or tucked through your belt.

 A really nice details is the red colour of the cover the lady is wearing through her belt in comparison to the simple black cover of the other girdle book. Note the folds of the cover under the clasp - the leather extends the cover on all sides, not just on the lower part. This way the book is completely protected all around.
The little circular mounts on the front and back are also a protection besides beeing decorative: When you put the book on a table, only the mounts touch the surface, the leather (or in my case, even more important the silk) doesn't come in contact with it.

I already bought little mounts for the book from Lorifactor. Cute little brass flowers originally intended to be belt fittings, but they look just like the ones used for books :-) 


  1. I think you might enjoy my photos of girdle books - a girdle book found at the "Schottenstift Museum" here in Vienna, Austria:
    (I took several detail photos of it)
    ...and this here - also taken at the same museum:

    I am 'just' an embroiderer without knowledge in bookbinding and this are my experience concerning girdle books this war
    it's really just a very easy to make kind of girdle book, but maybe you could find it useful... :)

    btw. nice blog :)

  2. Thank you :-)

    Your photos of the book in Vienna are great, so much detail! I´m working on another girdle book, bound in Sämischleder like the one in Schottenstift - now I definitely have the right idea for the cover ending above the turkish knot...

    Your way of making a "girdle book" is not really strictly medieval, but a very nice idea to hide a modern notebook - and it looks great worn with your beautifull clothes :o)

  3. You're welcome :)

    I am always very happy when my photos can be helpful :)

    Yeah, my version is quite easy and modern but I am not very used to work with leather :)
    ...thank you very much :)

    ...and your girdle books / leather projects are very lovely :)