So, yes, I decided to take things into my own hands. As many of you know, I have spent quite a few posts on this blog focusing on the lack of truly premium leather Catholic Bibles. I had always figured that at some point, someone would produce a premium leather RSV or NRSV in a specifically Catholic edition. Sure, I tried out a few of the genuine leather editions that are out there, but nothing really captured what I was looking for. I should point out that my desire for a premium leather was enhanced by the wonderful posts by J. Mark Bertrand at his Bible Design and Binding blog. So he is partially to blame! :)
In any case, I decided to commission my own premium leather Catholic Bible in the RSV-2CE. Why the RSV-2CE? Well, there are a couple of considerations that made that the obvious choice. First of all, the Ignatius edition contains cross-references, some minor notes, and maps. And even though the font isn't the most ideal in my mind, it is OK and contains paragraph headings that help to break up the text. Also, the Bible itself isn't too think. In many ways, it is the ideal size. The second reason is that the text book we will be using next year at the high school is keyed to the RSV-CE. This is also aided by the continued release of RSV-CE and 2CE related study tools, like The Catholic Bible Dictionary and The Catholic Bible Concordance.
So, next began the process of finding a book-binder who would handle my commission. Funny enough, the first book-binder who I contacted told me that he would not rebind my Catholic Bible in premium leather because he only would do Protestant Bibles. He basically told me that he would only rebind the Word of God, and the one I wanted to send him wasn't it. Hmm..... Lovely way to start this search.
Next, I contacted Leonard's Book Restoration. They were more than happy to rebind my Ignatius RSV-2CE. I sent them my book along with information as to what I wanted in my rebound RSV-2CE and they accepted it. Ultimately, the bonded leather Ignatius RSV-2CE was transformed into a premium rustic calfskin leather Ignatius RSV-2CE. So far, I am very happy with the end result. The people at Leonard's were very helpful when I placed my order, and it only took five weeks to complete the project, over the Christmas holiday no less.
The cover is very smooth and flexible, which is what I wanted. When I open it on a table, it opens flat without any need to bend the binding. In many ways, it looks and feels like the cover belongs with this Ignatius Bible. They also added my name to the bottom right of the front cover, as well as including an additional Bible ribbon.
Overall, I am very happy with my new Bible, and I will in the future recommend the fine people at Leonard's Book Restoration to anyone who wants a premium leather cover for their Bible.