Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Complete Rebind

This was the first complete rebind that I have done.  It was a pretty invasive repair, but the book was held together with scotch tape when I found it.  The book is "Poems by Edgar Allan Poe", published by Thomas Y. Crowell & Co, New York, 1892. 


The book was completely separated from its cover, and the spine was missing.  The cover itself was originally bound in green silk with gold stamp trim, but was worn and soiled and held together with a huge yellowed chunk of tape.  The book itself isn't extremely valuable or rare and was in shambles anyway, so I chose to do a complete rebind. 

I started by carefully removing the original silk from the boards with a microspatula (a total pain in the ass, as you can imagine).  As luck would have it, a fellow binder that also happens to make historic costumes gave me a piece of antique green silk that matched magnificently.    I also managed to salvage the original endleaves, which are a pretty pea-soup green with gold embossed floral designs.  This was also done with a microspatula, and also a total pain in the ass.

I resewed the text block, but I didn't trim the pages because they had a nice gilded finish on them.  I bound the book in the antique silk, attached headbands of yellow-gold and dark green stripes, and added a soft, curved spine.  I rounded the corners but I think the binder's corners I used were a little too bulky, but too late to change my mind after I started.

I reattached the floral endleaves (not pictured here yet), and attached the original silk to the new cover.  The contrast isn't quite so harsh as it appears in the photos; the light just picks up every blemish.  Overall, not too shabby for my first complete rebind.  I think it maintains the integrity of the original, and now is at least usable.

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