Encyclopedia Britannica

Encyclopedia Britannica Map Volume

This volume had substantial self-adhesive tape damage, having been kept in one piece by taping the spine back onto the boards, and taping the first section back together. Some of the tape had become brittle, stained and lifted from the paper, however the majority remained tacky and still adhered. Once the tape and tackiness had been removed, I was able to go about repairing the textblock, attaching the boards and creating a new spine. The brief from the client was to retain as much of its originality, wear and age as possible.

CONDITION

  • Substantial tape damage to endpapers, first and last sections.
  • Sewing is deteriorated and sections are loose at front and back.
  • The bulk of the sewing is still in tact.
  • First fly leaves and contents pages are damaged and detached.
  • Foxing throughout – to leave as is.
  • Endpapers are loose, buckram guttering is damaged at the back, front is loose, tape damaged, but still in tact.
  • Leather spine has become detached and re-adhered using self adhesive tape to the leather edges of boards.
  • Boards and corners are deteriorated at edges.
  • Spine lining is brittle and deteriorated.

TREATMENT

  • Remove self-adhesive tape from cover, spine, endpapers, first and last sections.
  • Repair first pages and recreate first and second sections.
  • Remove spine lining.
  • Extend sewing supports.
  • Sew loose sections back onto textblock
  • Repair endpapers and create new buckram gutter on back end paper.
  • Line spine with aerocotton and manilla.
  • Create hollow and false raised bands.
  • Split boards, lift board edges and neaten.
  • Reattach boards to textblock.
  • Create new spine piece from toned goatskin.
  • Reback volume.
  • Reattach original spine piece and consolidate.
  • Consolidate board edges and corners.

If you have a damaged book that you would like to discuss, please do get in touch.

The Holy Bible – Project

IMG_1066 feature

The Holy Bible
c. 1952
Full case binding, hollow-back, plain burgundy book cloth with blind-tooled border
University Press, Cambridge (Brooke Crutchley, University Printer)
140x198x39 (WHD)

I completed this volume some months back for an lady who was keen to preserve the book before it fell apart completely. As with so many books owned by individuals, the monetary value of this book was minimal, but the sentimental value was priceless. It is a classic Holy Bible, given to the owner as a child by her Grandmother, and has been loved and treasured ever since. As is often the case with books of such high sentimental value, the volume had deteriorated from such regular use. I greatly enjoy working on these types of books, despite their lack of social status in the book world, as there is little thanks in the conservation world that will match that given by someone whose treasured book has been carefully conserved and given new life for years to come.

CONDITION

BINDING Both boards were attached to the case and the spine was in tact. The shoulders at head and tail were worn, as was the tail at the spine edge. All the corners had minor ware, more so at the head. The case was detached from the textblock at front and at back after the end papers and map. The mull was exposed, worn down and deteriorating, though the tapes were still in tact.

TEXTBLOCK Page 543 was loose. Front end papers, first plate and title page were loose and attached by tape. The front endpaper was heavily damage both by detachment and from tape damage, corner is missing and replaced by tape. The following page also had a missing corner replaced with tape that was discoloured and stained. The title page was detached and stuck together with tape, which discoloured and stained the page. The first page of text was stained by offset tape residue from the title page. The final map and adjacent pages had tape residue damage, both discolouration and staining. They were also slightly detached from textblock, though remained attached to the boards. The tape damage, in all cases, was covering tears to the paper.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION A green paper cover had been adhered together using tape, which was discoloured and stained. The head and tail spine edges of this cover were also worn and damaged.

TREATMENT

  • Boards were removed, whilst keeping sewing tapes intact.
  • Front and back paste-downs were removed.
  • Paper repairs were made to loose pages, including infills to those with missing areas and reattachment where necessary by tipping.
  • Self adhesive tapes were removed and staining was reduced using a calcium hypochlorite bath, followed by washing to reduce the acidity.
  • The spine was re-lined and reinforced using an aero-cotton transverse lining.
  • The volume was then rebound using the original cover and the paste-downs were replaced using a sympathetic paper.
  • Hinges were inserted into the inside covers where necessary and the cover, spine and corners were consolidated.
  • Finally the paper cover was repaired and rehoused in melinex.

Cookery in Colour | Cleaning old book cloth

Cleaning book cloth has been part of this very busy week! In addition to working on my Essay book, both my Prayer book AND my Cooking in Colour book have seen action this week – it has been a super productive week on my part – along with setting up a studio – could a person fit more in a week I wonder? We will see!

So Cooking in Colour had a well timed resurgence this week with the work on tape removal, as you may recall the book was initially covered in brown packing tape. Well this has now all been removed and the tackiness and stain gone as well. Though technically not in keeping with conservation, I found that IMS cleaned up the cover of the book exceedingly well, so the cover is now showing a lot more blue and a lot less dirt. Arguably the dirt is part of the history of the book and should maybe be kept – but it’s my book and I’ll clean it if I want to! (tra la la laaa)

The Common Book of Prayer was also not left out this week either, as I have now got both end bands stuck down, the excess paper removed and the first loose section secured. All that is left now is for me to practice my Japanese tissue board attachments and it’s done. That will mean more toning, so may take me a couple of hours.

The common book having its first section stuck down