Angela Sutton was
asked to make a large portfolio to contain some ancient maps. It
was not to be stored flat but to stand upright in a library. The
largest map measured 1050mm by 750mm (3’5” x 2’6”) and this
needed the largest board available. The spine cover and flaps
were covered with library buckram and the rest of the boards with
a hand-marbled paper by Jemma Lewis. The client had requested
gussets at the side along with the normal side flaps, and these
were held in place with tasselled ties. As the portfolio
was to stand upright on its spine this was strengthened with a
strip of board and the foredge closed with a matching board.
This was a seventeenth-century book
that had lost its back. The boards were loose, with damaged
corners, and the front pages were dirty and torn at the edges.
Treatment was as follows: the edges of the pages were brushed
(out of doors) to remove loose dust and dirt. The front
four pages were cleaned of loose dirt, washed in cold water,
resized with gelatine size and repaired with a Japanese tissue.
The stitching was so weak that the book had to be resewn. The
sections consisted of two folds only so the sewing was ‘three-on’
(three sections together). The endpapers were replaced
with a handmade paper from Griffen Mill which matched the texture
and colour of the original paper as closely as possible. The
board corners were built up using leather parings mixed with
paste and re-covered with leather. The back was replaced
with a new piece of leather and the boards reattached. The
spine was then tooled with the title and decoration in keeping
with the period.