ConserveThis! Archive

This is an archive of posts from both my old blogs (Digital Cellulose, Chartex project) and my current Tumblr blog, Conserve This!

Removing Tape from a Ramage binding…

Removing Tape from a Ramage binding…

Got back on the bench for the first time in a long while. This tape residue on a beautiful handtooled binding just demanded to be picked at… On further inspection, I saw that it had a binder’s signature: “Bound by Ramage”. John Ramage was a […]

Egyptian-themed publisher’s bindings by the Decorative Designers firm

Egyptian-themed publisher’s bindings by the Decorative Designers firm

During my hunt for more signed bindings in Fletcher Library, I came across these attractive publishers bindings. Both have a distinctive monogram on their front covers: an overlapping double “D”, which identifies them as the work of the Decorative Designers firm.

Three different aesthetic approaches in circulating conservation treatment..

Three different aesthetic approaches in circulating conservation treatment..

Three different approaches to general collections conservation treatment (from L-R): Reusing the original boards and spine, with the spine and boards rejoined together using new bookcloth  A brand new case made with all new decorative elements, and no reuse of any materials from the original […]

A real find, hidden under an ugly binding…

A real find, hidden under an ugly binding…

It’s not everyday that I get a general collections book that’s older than the U.S.A. come across my desk. This one was in a tacky modern binding, both ugly and completely unsympathetic to the original binding structure it probably once had. When I opened it […]

The red velvet vampyre

The red velvet vampyre

About a month ago my lab moved temporarily from one campus to another. During the move out we unearthed many forgotten supplies, including some pieces of red velvet book cloth. Given that it’s probably not very “archival”, I was a little baffled as to why […]

Things they don’t tell you in book conservation grad school…

Things they don’t tell you in book conservation grad school…

Things they don’t tell you in book conservation grad school: one day your job will be to make a housing for a large papier-mâché chicken puppet.

Some scenes from the move of our archives and special collections…

Some scenes from the move of our archives and special collections…

Some scenes from the move of our archives and special collections: empty shelves contrasted with full book trays on their way to offsite storage. My library will be undergoing a massive renovation early this coming year, and I am the one managing the logistics involved […]

Arizo……na

Arizo……na

Bystander: I think the letters you picked are too b-   Bookbinder: ¯_(ツ)_/¯

Tape of low moral fiber

Tape of low moral fiber

If you ever need some scotch tape or masking tape in my conservation lab, this is where you’ll find it.   Double-sided tape (used for all sorts of conservation housings) is in the “Tape Tape” drawer.

Found in the archives and sealed with a kiss!

Found in the archives and sealed with a kiss!

While making photocopies of some moldy archives material, my student worker noticed that someone (presumably the person whose papers these are) had used this document to blot their lipstick. 💋💄