Library Binding

A standard binding method, library binding has a number of choices and options available. View the types of library binding we offer below.

Library Binding

Established & Trusted

A long standing Certified Library Binder through the Library Binding Institute (LBI), we serve public and private libraries, schools, universities, individuals, and other organizations. We offer personalized delivery service throughout the greater third of Mid-America and work with clients spanning from coast to coast. Every day Houchen Bindery Ltd. is entrusted with binding thousands of library books, one book at a time.


To provide long shelf life and preservation of valued books and documents, Houchen Bindery’s library binding standards include attention to detail, workmanship, and utilization of durable materials. We produce a significant majority of our product by the LBI’s standard. When we do not, it is by the choice of our customer.


We are pleased to be an ABLE™ Library Licensee and offer this service online to facilitate the exchange of data from our library customers. To establish a link with our server, please click the button below. You may be prompted to approve the download of a few files to make your connection function correctly.

Please contact us with any inquiries or visit Support for help.

Connect to ABLE™

I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate your bindery. I sent a C.S. Lewis series to you to be done as Color 4 Ever and it is an amazing job. Thank you!

Also, Richard (our pickup and delivery person) is one of the nicest people. He speaks to everyone in the library and is very professional. Thank you for great employees your company has. Houchen Bindery is the Best.

Preparing a Binding Order

Please review our guidelines for preparing a binding order to help ensure your order is processed correctly and comes back to you efficiently.

View Binding Guidelines

Types of

Library Binding


The traditional “Class A” library book is still very popular. This style of binding incorporates double fan leaf attachment, rounding units over ½” thick, trimmed edges, and up to 5 lines of lettering on Library Summit.


Periodicals are bound to customer specifications regarding collating, trimming, rounding, F grade buckram cover color, lettering color, lettering alignment, leaf attachment, and turn-around time. Custom collation is becoming increasingly expensive due to the amount of labor this work requires. Most price schedules for periodicals include 7 lines of lettering, volumes up to 2½” thick, and a 30-day turnaround.


Theses are bound to LBI specifications, with the customer’s choice of cloth and lettering colors, spine and/or front stamping. Some customers choose minimal information to be stamped, e.g., last name of author and year, while others prefer a considerable amount of stamping and prices are adjusted accordingly. When submitting theses to the bindery, please make your expectations clear concerning lettering, and include a binding slip with each title.

To access our On Demand Printing and Binding Thesis Service, click here.

View Theses & Dissertation Order Notes

Clam Shell Boxes

Clam shells are used on materials not suitable for regular binding, as with phase boxes. Clam shells are more substantially constructed, using regular binder’s board covered in F grade buckram, with C grade buckram interior coverings. Spines can be stamped, and colors chosen. Clam shells achieve almost total blockage of light, dust, and air from the original materials enclosed.

Phase Boxes

When materials are too brittle or otherwise in a weakened condition and cannot be rebound, the first choice of most libraries is to construct a phase box. Using acid-free barrier board, a custom-sized enclosure is constructed to protect the book block. Spines can be stamped, and boards are held in place by velcro. This is the least expensive custom fit enclosure we can supply.

Special Binding

Examples of special binding are log books for nuclear power plants, autopsy/pathology reports, legal bond issue books, computer printouts of all manner of data, and school grade or attendance reports. Virtually any paged material in any size and any thickness can be bound.

Types of

Clear Binding

Color 4 Ever (4C)
A Color 4 Ever (or 4-color) book uses the same binding methods as our Class A binding, but rather than a stamped buckram cover, the original cover artwork is reproduced on the cover.  This method gives books new life by maintaining the attractive cover artwork.  These books fly off the library shelves!


Real Wraps

Houchen Bindery’s “Real Wrap” method is very popular with many academic, public, and school libraries, as well as individuals. We’ll process new (or near new) softcovers by peeling them off the book block intact. The covers are then laminated, and this stock is made into a new, durable hardcover.  Many libraries purchase brand new paperbacks and send them to us to “Real Wrap” before putting them into circulation.



This method is similar to our “Real Wrap” method, but instead of laminating an original soft cover we produce a very colorful cover by laminating the dustjacket. These bindings are popular because they circulate better than buckram.

Picture Perfects

This product, Houchen’s newest, involves the creation of new cover graphics for a book with a damaged or plain cover. Covers with slightly damaged or obscured graphics can often be restored or cropped to look like new. Illustrated titles are frequently given four-color covers featuring photographs/artwork scanned from inside the book. Houchen’s graphics department also utilizes a library of over 500,000 clipart images/stock photos in order to provide an appropriate graphic for virtually any title.

These unique book covers feature original art created by students in school, library, or museum classes. Students can be encouraged to read the book first and then illustrate the cover. Great for older students as advertising, marketing, or lettering projects. Illustration contests, perhaps even with the involvement of a children’s book company are among the many other possibilities for this product.

View Artisto Guidelines

Our Latest Work

NLA/NSLA Conference

Houchen Bindery Ltd President Damon Osborne and Sales Representative Tim Benson attended the 2015 NLA/NSLA Conference in Lincoln, NE. The conference is a great opportunity to visit with many of the librarians we work with throughout the year. 2015 Highlights: Houchen... read more

Fall 2010 HBI/LBI Conference

At the Fall 2010 HBI/LBI Conference in Springfield IL, Jeanne Drewes from the Library of Congress (LC) made the announcement that LC has decided to fund some improvements in the ABLE software. The software being used currently is not meeting the needs of the LC, and... read more

Want more information or a quote?

Call 1-800-869-0420, or get in touch with us through our contact form.

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