19 March 2014

Inside the product: the "Milan" book
We anticipated the preview photos on our facebook page about the implementation of some deluxe copies of this beautiful book, and we expected to all its parts to tell you details about: the book "Milan" is a true piece of art.

"Milan, discovering food, fashion and family in a private city" is a photographic book about our city and its peculiarities: from a concept of ERD Design Studio in Melbourne (AU) and photographs by Robyn Lea,  is printed by Fontegrafica and manually bound by Cristina Balbiano d'Aramengo in hundred limited edition copies.
Produced in 2500, 100 of which copies are limited editions with special effects. A four years work, one completely dedicated to the studies of design, photos and prints processes. The first step saw a tight communication between New York, Melbourne and Milan to decide how to set the shelf marks and combine it with the right taste of the different mix of papers, photos and graphics.

The book is made with different papers, all treated with a specifics color curve to manage the different ink reactions on coated, natural, marked and pearlescent sheets: these last were processed with covering/transparent inks to give a 3D effect to the images. Nothing is left to chance: the marked black cover paper, printed in six metallic colors, with the title printed with a silkscreen. The text is a selection of 3, 4, 5 and 6 colors.

The hundred luxury copies are a magic box full of specials print effects: silk screen transparent varnishes, laser cuts, UV varnishes, almond scratch and sniff varnishes, hot stamps, reliefs and bas-reliefs, black silk screen prints details, letterpress inserts and silver laminations. All these special  works to light on some graphics and photographic elements, perfectly linked with the book concept.

The icing on the cake: the handmade binding by Cristina Balbiano d'Aramengo, Fontegrafica's partner that has ennobled the cover and all the small details that make s the book a piece of art. 

The hand sewing on exposed double tapes with crossed stitch in linen thread; the structural headbands, which strengthen the head and tail of the spine; the lining of the back with a black gauze to protect the spine and secure the boards to the binding; the rounding of the spine to create the correct shape of the back and fore edge of the book block, and to contain the thickness of the boards.

Some decorative details have been added: the black dye on the spine lining, the long double sewing bands which extend the spine material on the cover, and the black and turtledove long linen threads sewn together with the headbands. The endpapers have been lined with a thick card to stabilize the attachment of the boards, using PVA mixed with starch paste, then the tapes and gauzes of the backing have been fixed to the joint of the endpapers, and the cover boards have been covered with the printed "Imitlin" using pure starch paste.

The last step has been the mounting of the boards on the book block, putting it in the press for a while. The front board has an additional layer in black calf leather, which has been laser cut and applied around the board joint, and which falls free over the subject, partially showing what’s underneath; it invites the reader to open it, unveiling the front cover and starting enjoying the book. The binding has been completed trimming the sewing bands and the headband threads in different lengths, and gluing their points with mixed glue to avoid the raveling of the fibers.

"Milan" was presented Tuesday, June 18 at the Bulgari Hotel in Milan with an aperitif-conference, which was attended by all the actors involved with the project, as well as numerous VIP guests from Milan and Australia. Presentation will be followed by various events around the world, starting from London on June 27. Fontegrafica is honored to have participated and contributed to this project, a summary of its vision. The book is on sale at “La Rinascente”, luxury copies are available on demand.

Tags: Milan, Milan book, ERD, Robyn Lea, Fontegrafica, Cristina Balbiano d'Aramengo

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