Book Repairer

Fix books that have suffered tears, stains and other types of damage.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$19,000 – $46,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Book Repairers do?

A Book Repairer, or Book Mender, works to repair the damage done to books, usually within a library setting. Book Repairers can also work for a shop or auction house of some kind. Your duties as Book Repairer include erasing stains, mending tears and damaged bindings, and at times, completely replacing covers, bindings, or pages.

Your work is both artistic and labor-driven. The goal is to make the copy look as fresh and as close to new as possible. If you end up working in a library, then all you may be asked to do is repair a book enough so that it can be loaned out again.

But if you work for a museum or conservation center, you may be asked to handle rare and delicate copies of books, and restore them to their previous glory. If you work at an auction house or shop of some kind—anything profit-driven—then getting a book to a state of cleanliness while preserving its antiquity is going to be your goal, much like in a museum scenario.

Over time, you will become highly skilled and very quick at what you do. You will be able to identify the kind of paper you’re working with, and the very thread that needs to be re-sewn. You will also learn to work out what needs to be done and to what degree, befitting the environment you work in. You may work under a Supervisor, but ultimately, each book you work with is your individual project.

Should I be a Book Repairer?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Flexible: You're open to change and think variety is the spice of life.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.

  • Also known as: Book Coverer, Book Cutter, Book Finisher, Book Sewer

    How to become a Book Repairer

    Book Repairers generally graduate from high school and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Associate’s degree to increase your chances of finding a good job. Check out these schools offering Book Repairer-related education!
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