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Sylvia Ramos Alotta who was awarded The Jewish Book Arts Award by the Isaac Anolic Foundation began her classical training in drawing and painting at age of eight. After receiving a BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art, she was an Automotive Interior Designer for General Motors in Detroit. In 1995, Sylvia was awarded a U.S. Design Patent for a unique journal system [UNDERAPS] and began a lifelong interest in hand bookbinding. She holds an MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts in Book and Paper Arts from Columbia College Chicago. Her graduate school sketchbook on various bookbinding structures was published as The Exquisite Notes.

The book has become her artistic form of expression from concept to production reflecting a diversity of achievements based on her experience in industrial design, graphics, photography, and print. Her work can be found in publications as well as private and public collections. She has served on the Executive Board for the Guild of BookWorkers and exhibited internationally. She has  taught at Columbia College Chicago, Morgan Conservatory, Center for the Book, Paper Book Intensive, and Southwest School of Arts and Crafts. Sylvia is a Spertus fellow of the Midwest Jewish Artist Lab and Jewish Artist's Collective Chicago.

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Beautifully handcrafted patented design leather loose-leaf journal that is adorned with a unique mudejar pattern closure that evokes the splendor and elegance of the historic period of 12th century Spain. Cast from lead-free pewter the button is perfectly weighted to secure the soft leather wrap.  Loosen the natural dye leather cord to uncover four customizable color book rings holding 130 pages of premium art papers  recognized for their defining characteristics for the artist or fountain pen enthusiast. With daily use it will become softer and develop a rich patina enhancing the natural variations and surface markings.

US PATENT 5529418 AND DES. 379641

Passport sized leather artist's journal

Available in Black/Espresso/Mustard

Customize Color Rings/Cords/Inserts

Passport sized leather artist's journal

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The studio space is equipped with authentic old world bindery tools required to supplement the workmanship in repairing, designing and creating fine artist's books.


Bookpress / Lying Press / Sewing Frame


Custom Bindery Tools designed by Sylvia Ramos Alotta 2003

2024 Aluminum, Anodized in Blue/Purple/Red accented in 24kt gold and silver plated

Contact Info

I welcome your inquiries and questions.

Please call 630 334 7141 or send an email at:

Studio Hours: By appointment.

Sylvia accepts students for private classes in her studio. The sessions are adapted to the needs of each student.

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