There are some books that are just too precious or rare to simply replace. Many of these books travel along with their owners, with some being transferred down through generations, leading them to become tattered or worn. Family Bibles often fall into this category, as do antique and rare books that are considered heirlooms. At Azalea Bindery, we are a full-service bindery providing book repair to carefully and lovingly restore your old and damaged books.
Will My Book Lose Value if Repaired?
For books that are valuable, antique, rare, or sentimentally priceless, it’s important that you have them repaired or restored by a specialist. Repairing or restoring books in a way that retains their usefulness and value requires expertise and a long apprenticeship. Although not a professional conservationist, I have bound new and repaired old books of all kinds for twenty years.
Azalea Bindery is a full-service bindery that provides book repair and restoration. We will evaluate your book, assess the damage, and advise on how it can be repaired. We also offer hand marbled paper end sheets to replace old end papers that show wear and tear. We are experienced in repairing books and Bibles of all sizes, materials, and levels of disrepair. We are available to serve both local and on-line clients.
What Are Common Reasons for Needing Book Repair?
There are many ways that a book can become damaged and need repair. Some of the most common types of book damage include:
- Books often break at the joints because of the repetitive action of opening and closing the covers.
- Cover materials can become worn out and cracked, causing the fabric to fail around the corners and the book board to swell.
- Frequently, one or both covers become detached from the book and are missing or badly damaged.
- The text itself can break apart, sometimes in large chunks. Pages tear, fall out, and are lost.
These types of damage may be common but repairing them requires the application of techniques and special mending materials that are used by a professional book binder. Some of the standard services provided for book repair include:
- Paper restoration
We are able to delicately handle and restore torn pages, or we can rebind your beloved book by hand-sewing the pages back together. You may choose to have your damaged book or Bible recovered using new cloth or leather materials, or have a book changed from a softcover to a sturdier hardcover. Whatever the repair or restoration, we are committed to preserving as much of the original book as possible.
How Do You Decide Whether to Repair or Rebind?
Typically, it’s preferred to repair books rather than rebind them in order to keep as much of the original material and appearance as possible. This is especially true of rare, antique, or collectible books that may lose value when original material is replaced. However, when the spine is weakened, torn, or otherwise damaged, it may be necessary to rebind it. Professional book binders are often able to match the original material of a binding with a largely similar material, which helps preserve the majority of the original binding material. Depending on the extent and location of the damage, the spine label of a book can sometimes be removed from the original spine strip and then attached to the new spine to further preserve as much of the book’s originality as possible.
How Long Does It Take to Repair a Book?
The length of time that it takes to repair a book depends on the degree of damage it’s sustained. There are various things that can affect how long it takes, including the condition of the pages, whether a new cover is needed, if there has been water damage, the type of cover material that was used, and other variables. Typically, the book repairs that we see can take several days to complete. However, we often have work scheduled out for a couple of months. So, unless you have a hard deadline that we are able to accommodate, plan about 4-6 weeks to complete the repair.
Are Azalea Bindery Book Repairs Archival?
Yes, all mending materials used, from paper to cloth, board, and adhesives are of the highest quality and are guaranteed to be archival.
What Is the Cost of Book Repair?
If you need book binding repair or restoration services for an important book or bible, please fill out this request form. We will contact you in 5 business days with an estimate and when we can put you on the bindery schedule. The bindery has had an increase in requests in the past few years so we are scheduling new jobs no less than 6 months from now.
Available Services In Our Book Repair Line
Repair a Book Cover
Reattach a Book Cover
Repair Broken Joints and Hinges
Repair Split or Broken Spine
Reattach Loose Pages
Repair Torn Pages
Retitle Cover and Spine
Protective Box for Rare & Valuable Books