Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Red Fairy Repair

During a particularly freezing day early this year a few classmates and I made our way to Brattle Book Shop, in Boston, in search of material to repair. As our fingers went numb and noses ran we happily browsed through and found some pretty wrecked books. The Red Fairy Book was pretty icky and wonderful.

The inside had ill fitting brown endsheets with a chalky feeling to them and the cover cloth was prying itself away from the old and weakened cover boards.

I wanted to save the beautiful cover art so I removed the cloth, threw away the boards and went to work applying new endsheet and constructed a new case from scratch. I figured a smooth red to match the original material might be nice... but then realized the fresh look of the new cloth would attract negative attention to the mild discoloration and slight imperfections of the old piece. I found the evidence of the original book's age and state endearing and an important part of the item's journey. Navy blue Asahi silk book cloth would compliment the red nicely. A dark and bold surrounding for the recessed cover-turned-label.

Here it is. The new Red Fairy Book.