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Book Conservators

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If you are interested in becoming a book conservator, you should start out by learning all you can about how books are made. Study the history of books and of binding. Purchase an inexpensive, hardcover book at a used bookstore and take it apart to see how the book block is sewn together and how it is connected to the cover. Then try to put the book back together. There are many "how to" bookbinding guides to help you. Check out Hand Bookbinding: A Manual of Instruction, by Aldren A. Watson (New York: Dover Publications, 1996); Making Handmade Books: 100+ Bindings, Structures & Forms, by Alisa Golden (Asheville, N.C.: Lark Crafts, 2011); The Care of Fine Books, by Jane Greenfield (New York: Skyhorse Publishing, 2007); and The Encyclopedia of Papermaking and Bookbinding, by Heidi Reimer-Epp and Mary Reimer (Philadelphia: Running Press Book Publishers, 2002) for the history of different styles of bookbinding and definitions of terms used in the field.

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