Perfect binding makes a very neat package. The pages of this book are a heavy cream paper with a felt finish. The side edges are cut; the bottom edges are hand torn. With a perfect binding, you stack the cut pages up with a very clean, neat cut at the spine edge. When you're sure the spine edge is really tightly stacked and all the pages are even, you clamp the pages together and paint that edge with a special glue called padding compound. To get a good bond, you fan the pages just slightly in each direction while gluing. When it's dry, the pages are attached together.
I used book board for the front and back cover. They're covered with a gorgeous bronze-colored paper with a swirled satin texture. Then I glued the red-and-gold Chinese paper on the front. (If anyone can tell me what the Chinese characters mean, I'd love to know.) For a tad bit more interest, I added a piece of red-and-gold joss paper just inside the cover. Finally, I covered the spine with a piece of red duct tape, well burnished down onto the glued edge of the perfect binding.
This is a neat book, solid in the hand, nicely squared up and easy to hold. As a journalist and editor, I've done a fair number of interviews in my life, without a tape recorder. This notebook would work for standing up note-taking because it's narrow enough to hold in one hand easily and stiff enough to write on while holding it.