Conservation Binding
The primary purpose of conservation binding is conserving book and manuscript materials.  Methods can be divided into two types: Treatment and Housing.

A treatment is for a book what you’d think it is: something provided to correct an “illness.”  Books can be ill in many different ways, and as a result there are a fair number of treatments, which can be used alone, or in combination with other treatments to address a specific book’s problems.  Some common treatments are described and illustrated here.


Housing means giving a book a custom-built home of some kind, as a way of protecting it from the deleterious effects of light and dust.  Most housing is designed to allow the book to remain on the bookshelf, albeit in its protective covering.  Providing housing for an item transfers the wear and tear that the item would normally receive to the housing, so that being taken off of and put back onto the shelf no longer harms the item.  Some examples of housing are illustrated here.
Treatment and housing used together are doubly effective, preserving and protecting the book.
Repair procedures
Those interested in the “nuts and bolts” of what’s involved in various repair procedures can get an idea of what’s involved here.