Restoration

Repair, restoration, or preservation?

Books may be mended, repaired, restored, conserved, or preserved based on their historical, monetary or emotional value. Only the client can determine value and which route to take with items in their collection.

You’ll want to consider the value of the book in relation to the financial investment you are willing to make in it. If working with restorers or conservators, make sure you have a clear understanding of the expected outcome and risks to the item. You will also want to see examples of their work or ask for references when making a large investment.

Please see our Frequently Asked Questions page for information about the value of your books or art pieces.

MENDING: Mending is an economical option and is appropriate for modern books not highly valued financially or emotionally. The book will be mended but will likely not be restored to its original condition, though not radically changed from same. Loose pages may be tipped in, torn pages repaired, light cleaning or other minor fixes for damaged or worn books all fall under “mending.”

Mending services are offered in-house at Uncommon Works. A consultation, price quote, and release form describing client expectations, work contracted and inherent risks of mending is required before any work is begun.

BINDING: Rebinding a book in its original cover or hand binding into a new book cover is appropriate for books where the paper is intact and the cover is undamaged/new, but the signature leaves require re-stitching, the text block is loose from the spine or endpapers, or the client would like a new cover for an old book. Endbands are generally also replaced in this process. Rebinding should make the book more structurally sound and provide many more years of reading pleasure.

Paperback books may be rebound into hardcover, and pamphlets, magazines or ledgers may be compiled into hardbound volumes through binding.

Limited binding services in book cloth or buckram for books of a moderate value are offered in-house at Uncommon Works. A consultation, price quote, and release form describing client expectations, work contracted and inherent risks of rebinding is required before any work is begun.

For rebinding in leather, including gilding, handtooling in gold or blindtooling, and for books of a higher value, we recommend contacting a binder or restorer listed below.

REPAIR AND RESTORATION: Repair of a book may or may not include rebinding, mending or repairing the outside of the book cover, the text or the endpapers.

The common practice in repair is to maintain the book in a close approximation of its original condition, while restoration aims to return the book to its original glory, utilizing materials from the original book, or recreating them where this is not possible. Restoration can be expensive.

For repair and restoration of books of a high value, we recommend contacting a binder or restorer listed below.

CONSERVATION: Conservation is recommended for books of a very high value that should last for generations to come. Conservation is usually done for works in museums, archives, and library special collections.

Paper cleaning; hole/bookworm repair; fungus/mold/pest abatement; scroll, vellum and parchment restoration; and boxing or casing the work all fall under conservation. Conservation is expensive and is carried out using scientific methods per the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Artworks.

The conservator may restore the book (see above), rebind it, or may dismantle and box the book to preserve it. Specialist conservators also work with art pieces.

DIGITAL PRESERVATION: Almost any object can be digitized to preserve its contents in a computer file or to reproduce the item in print, and this process carries the least risk to the item’s integrity, generally speaking. Digitization can be an economical alternative to restoration, especially for family history stored in letters, photos, and journals.

Uncommon Works offers in-house digitization and preservation services based on the size and delicacy of the item.

Books may be converted to nearly any type of file, and can even be converted to personal and searchable, indexed eBooks for your own use on your tablet, computer or eReader, depending on copyright status. You also have the option of sharing what might otherwise be lost to history on Project Gutenberg or on your personal or genealogical Web site.

If you are an author, we offer ebook and print production and copyediting services for your original works.

We offer archival storage materials for sale for the original item(s) that are guaranteed to limit further decay of your precious works when properly handled and stored away from light, heat, moisture, mold, and pests.

A LIST OF MASTER BINDERS, RESTORERS AND CONSERVATORS

We provide a list of book arts professionals below. This list is for your convenience only, and does not imply any endorsement or guarantee of the binder’s work by Uncommon Works.

HAND BINDERS & RESTORERS

Green Crow Bindery
Eddy M. Hood
1390 Elliott Road Paradise, CA  95969
Telephone: (530) 872-3915
Web: www.eddyhoodconservation.com

Mt. Eden Books and Bindery
Jerry Pressler
PO Box 1014 Cedar Ridge, CA 95924
Telephone: (530) 274-2665

Old World Bookbinding
Irene
5935 Crestview Drive, Paradise, CA 95969
Telephone: (530) 872-9705

CONSERVATORS

Search for conservators online, here, at the
American Institute for Conservation
of Historic and Artistic Artworks

Green Crow Bindery
Eddy M. Hood
1390 Elliott Road Paradise, CA   95969
Telephone: (530) 872-3915

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