Hein (fub) wrote,

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My first attempt at making a box to hold my etching prints failed -- partly because I didn't have the right glue. All we had was PVA, which is commonly sold as "bookbinder's glue" in stores. It is pretty strong, but it dries out really, really fast. And with the large surfaces I had to glue in, by the time I got to the lower left corner, the upper right corner had already dried out. This made a really mess, and some patched didn't get glued correctly. It was a total failure, so we scrapped that...

At the workshop, we used something called "blend". It's... a blend (as you probably guessed) of PVA and paste from purified wheat starch. PVA is not 'archival', which means that it contains acids which may damage paper in the long run, but starch is pretty sticky and is acid-free. (On the other hand, starch is also the favourite food of the silverfish, so I'm not so sure you want to have a whole archive with starch-containing covers, but that's a different thing.)
Anyway, the starch paste dries out pretty slowly, which means that the starch keeps the PVA quite supple. I had ordered some purified starch from a bookbinding webshop, and my book on bookbinding contained a recipe to make the paste using a microwave (so it only takes three minutes instead of ten).

I've been using the blend today, and it's indeed much, much better. Tomorrow evening, I'll finish up the box. Of course, there will be pictures when it's finished!
Tags: cartonnage, craft

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