A few days ago I brought up the question: “Why is there a hole in almost all bonefolders that I encounter?” – Thanks again to all who shared their experiences!
I got even more curious about the topic since many uttered their opinions, but no-one seems to know. So I decided to pose the question on the book arts list.
There, too, no-one seemed to know why it is there, not everyone had a hole in their folder, and those whose bonefolders had holes often used it as a means of storage.
Here are some answers that I received:
“Only reason I can think of to have a hole in a bonefolder, but would never put the cord through to hang because it would get in the way. Hanging from a nail, maybe… ” Peter Verheyen
“[...]one of the more experienced people there had PUT a hole in her bonefolder. She actually wore it around her neck, so that she would not misplace it[...] Carol Pratt
After that the answers were rather funny, culminating in:
“After I sharpen one edge of the pointed end of my bone folder I file a notch midway on the other side. I can then feel that notch with my finger to know, without looking, that the sharpened side is down. Turn it over if the unsharpened side is needed.
The hole? I use it to look through.” Leonard Seastone
Haha! I still chuckle every time I see my bonefolders now.
I also received an email from Peter vuscor, who told me that apparently the hole in the folder is a German thing, it does not result from the making process. And he send me this beautiful image of his collection of folders and tools on a nail that you can see above.
So is the hole put in by the producer for the user to hang the folder from a nail? Why is it a German thing then? – Rulers have holes everywhere in the world! Aesthetic reasons? – It seems strange to me that something is so widespread here, but not in the rest of the world. That makes it sound like fashion – a fashion for bookbinding tools that has lasted for several hundreds of years? I am more intrigued than ever…