Preserving the spine of your hardcover books

Nothing quite beats the feel (or if you’re like me, smell) of a printed publication in your hands, but sometimes keeping the spine as beautiful as the day you first received your book seems almost impossible. I was browsing through Reddit the other day and came across a great image that explains how you can break in a book without ruining the spine.

In some books, the creep may make it difficult to read the text closest to the gutter of the book. Creep is an effect seen on larger saddle-stitch and perfect bound books whereby the center-most pages have progressively smaller image areas due to the thickness of the fold and is also often referred to as “push out.”

bookbindingBy instinct, you force the book to be as flat as possible and may not realize the damage you are creating with the bind. To fix that, you can simply repeat the following process a few times to gently treat the spine to open up.

To break in your book, simply switch back and forth between the front and the back of the book laying first the covers, then a few pages, down at a time until you meet in the center. Finish by gently pressing down on the gutter. Do this a few times and your spine should limber up for you without damaging the bind and loosening any pages.

Original source: How to open a new book via Reddit

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