Capturing and Cultivating Print & Book

Craft Practices in the UK


  • Angie Butler Centre for Print Research, University of the West of England
  • Sofie Boons University of the West of England


Emneord (Nøkkelord):

crafts, embodied study, research methodology, Embodied reflection, Traditional craft skills


The type of intensive training previously needed for crafts in the printing trade is now redundant, but as craft practices are added biannually to Heritage Craft’s UK Red List of Endangered Crafts, there is a pressing need to preserve skills whilst also creating and developing new methodologies for practice in the UK to ensure these crafts survive as part of a thriving cultural heritage.The Dissecting Crafts project was centred around supporting book craft practitioners (typesetters and manufacturers, a letterpress printer and a book binder) to gain insight and extend their practice. Using qualitative research methods, an embodied knowledge methodology was developed as a system of self-evaluation. A freely available online tool kit was developed from project findings to enable other practitioners at all skill levels access to the programme. Sharing the research stages sensitively with case study practitioners evidenced their connectedness with their tools and with what they make, through a process of validation that was not anticipated in the project. Unintrusive methods of documenting in-progress activities, the practitioner-researchers’ recordings of the craft participants’ experiential dialogue proved valuable for them to be able to harness and transfer their knowledge. The methodology and tool kit were extended to other maker practices with feedback types ranging from practice development, reflection skills, and arti­cul­at­ion to validation.


Angie Butler, Centre for Print Research, University of the West of England

Senior Research Fellow (PhD)
Centre for Print Research

Sofie Boons, University of the West of England

Research Associate
Centre for Print Research



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Hvordan referere

Butler, A., & Boons, S. (2023). Capturing and Cultivating Print & Book : Craft Practices in the UK . FormAkademisk, 16(4).

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