Japanese Craftsman Makes Old Books Look New AgainTranslate

3 year ago · Bobbie · 0 Comment
Categories: Creativity · How-to · Lifestyle · Video     Tags: Book · Art · Craftsman · Japanese · History
A worn, tattered English-Japanese dictionary looked like it was headed for the trash bin until the owner gave the 1000-page book to Nobuo Okano. A Japanese master craftsman, Okano has worked for 30 years to master the craft of restoring old books to a pristine condition. The Japanese Show "Fascinating Craftsman (Shuri, Bakaseru) recently featured his process, including the tedious unfolding of every page's corners with a tweezer. Once that's done, he actually irons them! The entire process if detailed below.

Tools Of The Trade

Tools of the trade
The client used the dictionary when he was young, and now wanted it restored so he could pass it on to his daughter.

Preserving Pages

Preserving pages
Included in the book were maps of English-speaking countries. They were heavily damanged, so Okano fixed them to new sheets of paper to support and preserve them.

Although there is a color difference in the old and new paper, this can prevent the maps from further degrading.

The most tedious and time-consuming part of the restoration is using tweezers to straighten the corners of every page.

To smooth out the creases, he applies a small amount of water then iron the corners straight.

He doesn't use a standard iron for the job; he has a special, very small one that won't overheat.

Like many of us, the owner penned something on the book in ink. In this case, he wrote his high school sweetheart's initials.


The pages are restored to their pristine condition.

Finished Product

Finished product
To finish the restoration, the cover is replaced while keeping the original title.

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