The Secret Bindery

The Secret Bindery is a passion project I started in 2012, creating beautifully crafted, hand-stitched hard cover journals.

Each journal is a labour of love, completely handmade, with old-fashioned stitching and fabric covers.

I inherited a love for bookbinding (and most of my bookbinding equipment) from my mother, who now runs The Montagu Bookshop as a retirement project. I pursued this passion at Stellenbosch University during the completion of my BA degree when we were given the opportunity to attend a holiday workshop on bookbinding, with one of South Africa’s bookbinding masters, Arthur Wadman. Mr. Wadman subsequently passed away from a long battle with lung cancer and I am grateful that I managed to learn all I did from him a mere three weeks before he passed away.

When I began this project I was full of enthusiasm (and naïvety!) and thought I could turn it into a thriving business. I completed several orders for happy customers but quickly realised that I would never see the light of day if I continued. Each book takes about 10 hours to complete, and that excludes time in the press. This was not a project to be outsourced to China or even a previously disadvantaged community in South Africa… it is deeply personal, therapeutic, and will remain a slow sideline hobby – perhaps until I retire, and set up a market stand of my own!



Let’s work together!

We’re always interested in new creative projects. Please fill
in your details below and we will get back to you.

Hahndiek Creative offers a broad creative skillset
including branding, UI/UX, web design and
development, book concepts and illustration.

Amy-Jean Hahndiek is a multi-disciplinary freelance creative currently based in Cape Town, South Africa.

With over 5 years’ experience in the creative industry, Amy-Jean relishes creative projects that require conceptual ingenuity and problem-solving, whether it be finely crafted branding, cutting-edge UI/UX, innovative book concepts or eye-catching illustration.

Get in touch