Victorian, full cloth case binding restoration/repair.
Not often seen on my bench..... For many years I worked as a bench
monkey.. standing at a bench and working for peanuts. I learned so much,
more of that later...... a book repair job. I do not
usually do restoration work, however for interesting jobs, a nice person
or for long term clients... exceptions are made.. Please note, I am not a full time restorer, the methods and techniques I
use may be different to ones others use, different does not
automatically mean wrong.
I balance the requirements of the book, the
clients wishes and what I think is applicable. Oh yes... and budget.
My ethos is simple when it comes to this sort of work.
Minimal intervention, keep what is important, both for the history of
the book and the owners needs/wishes. Be reasonable in costs and no B.S.
The usual Victorian, cloth bound case binding. Very bumped, worn spine
and some dear in the past has adhered the spine of the text block to the
spine piece... got to love them......
The text block is removed from the case and will be worked on separately.
Once the turn ins have been peeled back the true extent of the damage to the boards can be seen. The square is way too big and has become vulnerable to bumps, knocks, warping over the edge of the text block. This in turn has led to the board de-laminating.
What still fascinates is the archeology of the book. In this case the
hemp boards, with either soot of cinders trapped among the fibres,
things like that still fire my imagination.
Repair papers are toned by cross-hatching various coloured pencil crayons.
problem with this particular book is that the square is too big for the
thickness on the board resulting in the board edges becoming very
vulnerable. The corners have been repaired and reinforced with a repair
paper, the boards have been retained - lined with a 130gsm neutral ph
paper. The spine has been repaired with a repair paper a new spine piece
of manila has been applied.
The work on the restoration of this Victorian, full cloth case
binding draws to a close. The Case was allowed to dry around the text
block, under pressure/weights overnight. The corners are firm, the board
edges are stiff.
I know everyone bangs on about leather restoration and the like but cloth bindings do have a patina that works with age.