Book Repairs and Restorations

damaged book
Samples of Completed Projects
 
Repairs to damaged books, to give them a new life. Use the contact information, at the bottom of this page, to discuss your repair and book binding projects.
 
Details, and photos, of selected past projects shown below. First column shows item before repairs, second column shows item after repairs completed. Click on thumb-nail images to view detail. Detail photos are large files, may take some time to download.
 
Contes de Grimm - Repair
 
Description:
Recueil De Contes De Grimm (Collection of Grimm's Fairy Tales) by Kathleen Fitzgerald, Illustrated by Gilbert James. Siegle, Hill - London, no date [1910?]
 
Condition as received:
Covers detached, gathers separated, back-strip completely missing.
 
Repairs performed:
Gathers re-sewn, new mull, new end-papers from legacy papers, new back-strip of black leather.
Paroissien Romain - Repair
 
Description:
Nouveau Paroissien Romain. Printed 1929, Brussels Belgium.
 
Condition as received:
Internal hinges separated, soiled end-papers, leather back-strip split, bookmark ribbon frayed.
 
Repairs performed:
New mull, new end-papers*, new leather back-strip, new leather title block, new headbands, new ribbon bookmark.
 
*By scanning a small, clean, portion of the original end-papers, I was able to reproduce the unique end-papers.
Good Medicine - Repair
 
Description:
Good Medicine by Charles M. Russell. Published 1930 by Garden City Publishing, Garden City, New York.
 
Condition as received:
Covers completely separated from text block, yet end-papers intact; tipped in illustration separated, sewing rotted, water damage to covers.
 
Repairs performed:
Re-sewed gathers, new mull, reattached covers and end-papers, new leather back-strip, with faux bands, wide enough to cover water damage, re-glued tipped in illustration, new leather label on back-strip.
Scout Ranger - Repair
 
Description:
Scout and Ranger: Being the Personal Adventures of Corporal Pike by [James] Pike. Published 1865 by J.R. Hawley & Co., Cincinnati & New York.
 
Condition as received:
Front cover completed separated, rear cover nearly separated, several loose leaves, one gather (sometimes, mistakenly, called 'signatures') separated from cords, back-strip panel completely separated.
 
Repairs performed:
Reattached loose leaves, re-sewed loose gather, installed new mull, faux headbands, new end-papers (from antique papers). Reattached old boards with new back-strips of complementary cloth, attached old back-strip.
 
The new back-strip was kept as narrow as possible so as not to cover much of the very nice blind-stamping on the covers. For this same reason, the owner declined to have the corners covered with new cloth.
James Expedition - Repair
 
Description:
An Expedition From Pittsburgh to the Rocky Mountains Performed in the Years 1819 and '20 ... compiled by Edwin James. Two-volume set Published 1823 by H.C. Carey and I. Lea, Philadelphia.
 
Condition as received:
Front and rear covers completed separated on both volumes, loose leaves, some minor rips to some pages, leather in poor condition.
 
Repairs performed:
Reattached loose leaves, repaired rips, installed new mull, new end-papers (from contemporary papers). Reattached old boards with new back-strips of goat leather with faux bands, custom labels, applied leather treatment.
The Ke Whonkus People - Repair
 
Description:
The Ke Whonkus People: A Story of the North Pole Country by John O. Greene. Published 1893 by Vincent Publishing Company, Indianapolis Indiana.
 
Condition as received:
Rear hinge completely separated, front hinge almost separated, binding was 'loose'.
 
Repairs performed:
Re-glued loose leaves, installed new mull, new end-papers (from contemporary paper). Owner wished to retain inscription on the old front paste-down. It was not possible to remove the inscription without damage so a window was cut in the new front paste-down to show the inscription.
Grandma's Cookbook - Repair
 
Description:
The Modern Family Cookbook (New Revised Edition) by Meta Given. Published 1961 by J.G. Ferguson Publishing Company, Chicago.
 
Condition as received:
Covers completely separated from book, duct tape holding portions of book together, title/copyright page separated from first gathering, last sheet separated from last gathering, endpapers split at hinges.
 
Repairs performed:
A complete re-casing of the book - new boards and endpapers, grey cloth over new boards. Reattached title page and index page, new headbands, facsimile images of old cover and spine attached to new cloth.
Cuba In War Time - Repair
 
Description:
Cuba In War Time by Richard Harding Davis, Illustrations by Frederic Remington. Published 1898 by R.H. Russell, New York. Scarce in wraps.
 
Condition as received:
Text block is solid, wraps in poor condition, rear cover completely detached.
 
Repairs performed:
I saved the old front and rear panels, and portions of the spine panel (back-strip); installed all new wraps, attached the old panels to the new wraps. I wasn't able to save the old book-plate, so I made a copy and attached that inside the front cover.
The Mambi Land - Repair
 
Description:
The Mambi Land or Adventures of a Herald Correspondent In Cuba by James J. O'Kelly. Published 1874 by J.B. Lippincott & Co., Philadelphia.
 
Condition as received:
Text block is fairly solid, but was badly cocked (tilted), hinges and joints separating, corners bumped, library repair tape.
 
Repairs performed:
I saved the old front and rear panels, and portions of the spine panel (back-strip); re-squared the text block, completely re-cased the book - all new boards, end-papers. Re-used major portions of the front, rear, and spine panels as could be rescued, attaching them to the new covers, removed the majority of the library tape residue. I was also able to rescue the old book-plate, re-attached inside the front cover (not pictured).
Leaves of Grass - Repair
 
Description:
A two-volume set of 'Leaves of Grass' by Walt Whitman, photos by Edward Weston, published 1942 by Limited Editions Club.
 
Condition as received:
Interiors of the books are solid, the hinges are tight; but the external joints were almost completely separated and the corners were badly bumped.
 
Repairs performed:
I rescued the old spine panels, installed a new spine of heavy fabric, and also covered the corners - so, now half green cloth - and attached the old spine panels to the new cloth.

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