Restoration & Conservation

Our wide knowledge and experience of past practices and traditional skills enable us to specialise in the restoration of period bindings, in particular leather rebacking and facsimile cover designs. The end result is a sympathetic blend of old and new in a unified whole, returning a binding to its intended appearance and a robust, functioning state.

Dragon Press Bindery also provides a full range of book, manuscript and archive conservation services, as well as consultation on preservation measures and storage solutions. Treatments are performed using minimally invasive techniques and prioritising the retention of original material. Sometimes damage is so severe that the only option is a completely new binding, in which case we will recreate an appropriate historic structure. Conservation-grade materials are used throughout. We abide by the standards and ethics of our professional bodies Icon
(Institute of Conservation) and AIC (American Institute for Conservation).

In discussion with you, we will advise on appropriate options to enable your informed agreement on a course of work. You will receive a detailed written proposal and estimate of costs for approval before going ahead, and clear communication of methods employed.


Terminology (as defined by the American Institute for Conservation)

Restoration: Treatment procedures intended to return cultural property to a known or assumed state, often through the addition of non-original material.

Conservation: The profession devoted to the preservation of cultural property for the future. Conservation activities include examination, documentation, treatment, and preventive care, supported by research and education.

Preservation: The protection of cultural property through activities that minimize chemical and physical deterioration and damage and that prevent loss of informational content. The primary goal of preservation is to prolong the existence of cultural property.



  •  Blanks cut out

    Blanks cut out

  •  Hand engraving & distressing

    Hand engraving & distressing

  •  Fitting

    Fitting

  •  Islamic style headband

    Islamic style headband

  •  12th Century limp tawed binding

    12th Century limp tawed binding

  •  Link stitch with wooden boards

    Link stitch with wooden boards

  •  Link & long stitch models

    Link & long stitch models

  •  Limp vellum

    Limp vellum

  •  Old spines removed for reattachment

    Old spines removed for reattachment

  •  Cleaned spine with split boards

    Cleaned spine with split boards

  •  Recreation of original spine tooling

    Recreation of original spine tooling

  •  Parchment indenture flattening

    Parchment indenture flattening

  •  Recreation of original spine tooling

    Recreation of original spine tooling

  •  Handmade clasps

    Handmade clasps

  •  Springback opening

    Springback opening

  •  A section of the workbench

    A section of the workbench

  •  Finishing hand tools

    Finishing hand tools

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Dragon Press Bindery Ltd
99 Eastrop, Highworth
Swindon, Wiltshire, SN6 7PP
Company Number
10772518
Registered in England & Wales
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@ 2020 Dragon Press Bindery