Better with Age

While most of what we reclaim at RE is fairly recent material, we sometimes get treated to donations of vintage material. Recently we got a big box of sheet music, which seems to span the first fifty or so years of the twentieth century. Some of the songs and songbooks are in great shape -- we're looking forward to framing some of the more exciting art nouveau-inspired covers. old music Other, older songbooks are a little more troubled, with paper that crumbles under your fingers. Once upon a time, their creased bindings started to go, and their creative owner decided that they should be reinforced. "Once upon a time" must have been before today's packing-tape version of this repair existed, because these bindings are reinforced with strips of newspaper.

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The newspapers not only serve as reinforcements, but also time stamp these vintage songbooks. This old-school repair harkens back to a time when we were better acquainted with repair and reuse, and reminds us that creative reuse is not just for artists, but for everyone. music books
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