Archives for posts with tag: David Chambers

Published by the Private Libraries Association.

For publication early 2018.

This will be a two volume account of the early private presses that were active in the British Isles in the 18th and 19th centuries. It will not include the Kelmscott and Eragny Presses – which have already been comprehensively covered elsewhere.

This publication will, however, include details of presses worked from domestic premises; where the press was worked at home, or in some cases within a school. It does not include commercial enterprises.

There will be up to a hundred reproductions along with a bibliography of around 1,750 books and 850 pieces of ephemera printed at the presses.

The two volumes will be retail at £80, however, copies of the ordinary edition will be available for free for members of the Private Libraries Association, for those who are members for both 2017 & 2018. Membership costs £30 per annum (£15 for students up to 16 years of age) and can be applied for by writing to Jim Maslen (details below).

There will also be a special limited edition (100 copies) that will include c.12 specimen leaves taken from defective volumes of the presses. These will retail at around £170, not including postage. Orders may be placed by contacting David Chambers (details below).

The final prices have not yet been settled, however, provisional orders may be requested for the books and invoices will be sent out on publication.

Jim Maslen

29 Eden Drive, Hull HU8 8JQ (maslen’

David Chambers

Ravelston, South View Road, Pinner, Middlesex HA5 3YD (







Books, printing and wood engraving are I suppose in my blood in one form or another and I grew up, I think from quite an early age learning by design, but mostly by osmosis, about book design, illustrations and collecting. It stuck.

I like a well designed book. I love books with gorgeous illustrations, and if you can combine the two, all the better.

This volume, it has to be admitted was written by Dad.  It is in effect the celebration of Joan Hassall, a wood engraver of extraordinary quality.

It is, perhaps my favourite of Dad’s books that have been published by the Private Library Association. Probably because I love Joan’s work and this really is a beautiful volume of pictures, (over 470 of them) even if you are not interested in wood engravings or Joan.

The full title of the book is Joan Hassall Engravings and Drawings. It has an introductory memoir by Joan Hassall and an appreciation of her technique by George Mackley. The book contents also includes: Books and Bookplates / David Chambers, List of Illustrated Books, Lists of Illustrated Journals, Dust Jackets and Miscellanea, List of Bookplates, Select Bibliography, Book Illustrations, Occasional Blocks, Bookplates, and an Index of Books.

She is probably most well-known for her illustrations for Jane Austen’s books – and these are reproduced along with those from books of Perrault’s Fairy Tales, natural history, including The Strange World of Nature, collected poetry, Old Scottish Christmas Hymns and bookplates amongst a plethora of other works.

She died in 1988, thankfully a few years after this publication came out. It really is a beautiful celebration of a very special, self depreciating and talented lady.

Should you wish (and you should) to have a copy of this, please contact the Private Libraries Association who will be happy to supply details. Further, if you mention this you will receive a 10% discount on this gorgeous volume.

Private Library Association,Ravelston, South View Road, Pinner, Middlesex HA5 3YD