The easiest way for me to answer: “So what do you do?” is to say: “I’m a bookbinder”.
The problem is when you say that to friends, they start bringing you all sorts of their bookbinding problems. You see, we’re bookbinders who specialize in custom made blank journals. We don’t normally try to get any work repairing old books. That is a whole area of expertise mostly beyond my own interests and skills. But, it’s hard to say no to good friends.
So after I made a cameo appearance at a group my old musician friends’ weekly jam session in Omaha, I was handed this old Sunday School Scholar’s Bible by Nelson (circa 1923). It was falling apart in sections and the spine had come away from the front and back. So what we agreed on was I would repair it with a new binding of similar fashion, over which we would save and re-apply the spine, front and back leathers. Once involved with the project, I went on and made an archival, hinged lid box to store it. Just seemed like the right thing to do!
The end sheet in front was torn off, but there was some hand writing on it that they wanted saved So we reconstructed the endsheet with parchment paper and backed it up (duplexed) to black book cloth.
Then we made the Hinged Lid Archival Box