Stain Reduction

Paper is susceptible to staining, whether from mold, acids, light or other influences. The staining can be reduced by various methods depending upon the source of the stain, the media, and overall condition of the paper.  Many stains can be reduced by careful washing, or by various conservation bleaching processes.

George Washington letter treated
Before treatment of a letter written and signed by George Washington 1796, stained and previously mended with orange paper; and after treatment, old orange paper repairs were removed and the stains were each locally treated to reduce the staining. It was then mended with Japanese paper.

Pencil written letter from Marilyn Monroe treated
This pencil written “Dear John” letter from Marilyn Monroe to Elia Kazan has staining and paper loss due to mold. It was treated to reduce the staining by careful five step bleaching process, the losses and tears in the paper were mended by leafcasting; and after treatment.

Watercolor drawing treated
Watercolor drawing severely stained due to acid and light damage; and after treatment, the colors were carefully consolidated to preserve them prior to a five step bleaching process.

Architectural drawing treated
An architectural drawing mounted to an acidic cardboard that was further damaged by water and mold. After treatment, the thin drawing paper was removed from the acidic cardboard, the colors were consolidated, the paper was treated to reduce the staining (not all of the black mold stains could be reduced without damage to the paper). It was mended and lined to Japanese paper.