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Topic: My first attempt at restoring a book from the late 1800s  (Read 3960 times)
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Mistress Jennie
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« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2013 10:04:21 AM »

Beautifully done!
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« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2013 12:19:15 PM »

Congratulations! This has been chosen as a Featured Project!
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« Reply #22 on: June 21, 2013 03:17:27 PM »

Beautiful job!   Smiley

(just a general note to mention that restoration like this may affect the value of the book as an antique)

I agree, it is a beautiful job!  I'm sure this book wouldn't have had much value as an antique because it was so damaged, but I would definitely hesitate if I was thinking about restoring one that was in better shape.
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CDEeeek
« Reply #23 on: June 21, 2013 05:25:28 PM »

Wow, that is amazing. And inspiring. I wonder if there is a way to fix mildew stains? I have some stuff from the 1800's that are beautiful like this, but sadly they are damp-damaged. They don't smell bad, but there's no removing the stains is there?

Have you had anyone give you an estimate of the worth of the book now that it's restored? I know collectors like unrestored items, but that poor book couldn't get much worse, could it? It's nice that you so lovingly restored it. I will never have a kindle, I tell ya!
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« Reply #24 on: June 22, 2013 12:25:35 PM »

Wow, thanks so much, everybody! I can't believe this was a featured project!  Cheesy

Wow, that is amazing. And inspiring. I wonder if there is a way to fix mildew stains? I have some stuff from the 1800's that are beautiful like this, but sadly they are damp-damaged. They don't smell bad, but there's no removing the stains is there?

Have you had anyone give you an estimate of the worth of the book now that it's restored? I know collectors like unrestored items, but that poor book couldn't get much worse, could it? It's nice that you so lovingly restored it. I will never have a kindle, I tell ya!

Regarding mildew stains, it is entirely possible, but sadly, a ridiculously exact science. This article might give you some idea of the finickiness of foxing and mildew. You're best off taking your books to a professional restorer or conservator.

I haven't had anyone give me an estimate of its worth, but I imagine it isn't worth much of anything. I got it on ebay for around 20 bucks, and I'm guessing that now that it's been altered like this (as opposed to conserving its original parts, etc.) any value it may have had as an antique is gone. That's fine by me, though, as I'm just trying to build up a nice turn-of-the-19th-century library, and don't intend to get rid of it. Paper books are amazing; in fact, I'd say they are one of my favorite things in the world; but I gotta say, nothing travels like a kindle!  Cheesy
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« Reply #25 on: June 27, 2013 10:38:44 AM »

I so love that you gave that poor tattered book a new life as a book instead of altering out of its natural form.  You did such beautiful work!  It almost made me cry, which I think might just be the pregnancy hormones kicking it.  But that's how lovely I thought it was.  And let me tell you, I don't cry at everything!  ^_^
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« Reply #26 on: June 27, 2013 01:42:40 PM »

I just have to jump in, as a book lover -- what you've done is wonderful!  Not just making something pretty, but respecting something that was obviously a prized possession from the past.

I tip my hat to you!
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Athterath
« Reply #27 on: June 28, 2013 05:51:21 PM »

Lovely work.  And so much better than discarding the cover or covering half of it with repair tape!

I do hope you took the time to write your own inscription, explaining when / how / why / by whom the book was refreshed.  Somebody 100 years from now might revel in that glimpse at its history.   Smiley
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« Reply #28 on: July 03, 2013 04:31:13 PM »

Wow!  What a transformation!  I have restored a few science fiction pulp books, but certainly nothing as big as a Woods Illustrated Natural History!  (I don't think I would have the courage to work on that one).  I have a version somewhat similar to yours, but mine is in a bit better condition.  I had mine appraised, and found out that my copy was worth between $60-$120, but if it was in better condition it would be worth closer to $400, so based on the condition of yours (assuming it is close enough to mine) I doubt it would be worth all that much (and I think the worth of having such a beautiful book that you can actually flip through and read is worth far more, especially these books!).  Does your copy have a date inside?  Mine doesn't, but dates between 1890-1895 (so I'm told).   
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« Reply #29 on: July 04, 2013 10:44:09 AM »

Beautiful work!!
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