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Please provide a few details about your objects so that we can provide an accurate quote.

Project Questionnaire

Thank you for your interest in my services.

I offer conservation treatments for items of either rare or sentimental value, including: books, works of art on paper, manuscripts, birth certificates, diplomas, and photographs.

Marianne Kelsey

For customers within driving distance, I offer estimates from my studio. You are also welcome to make arrangements to mail your item(s) to me for a quote. I periodically make trips to East Coast & Southeastern cities including Atlanta, Birmingham, Washington DC, Richmond, Charlottesville, Nashville, Chattanooga and Knoxville to provide consultations for customers residing in those regions. Feel free to fill out the contact form below, or call my studio to speak with me in person. I look forward to helping you preserve your precious artifacts.

What to expect when you work with us

1. What to expect at the start of your project

We will make arrangements for a consultation.  We offer complimentary estimates via phone and email.  Clients are welcome to arrange to meet with us at our Greensboro studio or mail artifacts for evaluation and a formal quote. 

Once you have deposited your artifact at our studio, a complete and in-depth analysis will be performed, and a formal evaluation, treatment plan, and quote will be drawn up for your project. The Conservator can often provide a firm estimate at your in-person consultation.  In some instances, an additional evaluation will be required to determine the exact treatment required.

3. Project completion with full report

A full Conservation Treatment Report will be provided upon completion of your project.  We reserve the right to stop treatment or refuse a treatment that we deem inappropriate and that may damage the object. 

We take great care to improve the condition and appearance of your works on paper to the full extent possible without risking structural or historical integrity.  We are passionate about the services we provide and the artifacts we preserve.


2. The engagement process

Your object(s) will remain at our studio so that we can perform a complete examination and formulate the appropriate treatment. At this stage we will provide you with your treatment proposal.  After reading it, you can let our staff know if you have any questions or concerns.  Once you have reviewed and signed the necessary paperwork, and made a 50% deposit, your artifact is placed in our work queue.

Average turn times vary depending upon backlog and the nature & scope of your project.

Kelsey National Book & Paper Conservation Studios

 Here you will find answers to most of your questions. 

If your questions aren’t covered here, please use the form below to email us or you can contact us at (336) 509-0536

Common Questions & Answers

Marianne Kelsey received her training working at a variety of institutional conservation labs across the country, including the University of Iowa and the State Historical Society of Iowa. She most recently completed a nine-year tenure with Etherington Conservation Services, a regional conservation center. In addition to her Bachelor’s degree in Art from Earlham College, she has been awarded the distinction of Professional Member by the American Institute for Conservation. She attends continuing education courses regularly through Rare Book SchoolThe Campbell Center for Historic Preservation, SERCA, AIC, and other preservation-related institutions. These courses help her continue to expand her skill set and keep up with the growing body of knowledge regarding conservation treatments and methodology.

We offer complimentary estimates for customers who are able to travel to our studio in Greensboro for consultations. We typically reserve Fridays for client consultations, but also offer weekend appointments for customers traveling from out of town. During your visit, our Conservator will take some time to evaluate your artifact(s) and discuss your needs. By the end of your visit, we will give you recommendations for treatment and the associated fees. Should you decide at that point that you would like to have an official quote drafted (a legal document denoting the exact treatment and fees recommended), you can leave the item at our studio with a $100 quote fee. Once you have approved the treatment and returned the signed quote form with a 50% deposit, the project will be placed in our work queue. Typical turn-around times for conservation treatments are about 4-6 months.

Turn-around times for conservation treatments are variable, but typically run 4-6 months. Rush services are many times available for an additional fee.

Each historical & artistic object is different.  The fees for treatment vary widely and are based upon the materials, labor and skill required to complete the project. However, treatment will rarely cost less than $500.

We can provide you with treatment recommendations and a ballpark estimate based off of photos and additional details you provide.  The more detailed you are in the information you provide, the more accurate our estimate will be.  However, ultimately every artifact must be examined, tested and evaluated in person at our studio to determine if it is treatable and what the best approach & associated cost will be.

The artwork will ideally be stored and/or displayed in a climate controlled environment.  The relative humidity (RH) should not exceed 50-60%.  Attics and basements are to be avoided due to concerns about poor air circulation, and extreme temperatures & RH shifts.  It is best to avoid displaying your work of art over HVAC vents, fireplaces or humidifiers.

See our video on how to create your own odor removal chamber: 

If meeting in person is not an option, you are welcome to mail your book or paper-based artifacts to us for evaluation. In order to do so, you will need to submit an inquiry via the Contact page, or call us at: (336)509-0536. We will send you the necessary paperwork. Once you have completed the Request for Quote form, you mail it to me along with your item and a quote fee.  Once we have received your item, we are usually able to evaluate it and issue the quote document within 1-2 weeks. You can receive your quote via email or US Postal Service. Once you have approved the treatment and returned the signed quote form with a 50% deposit, the project will be placed in our work queue. Typical turn-around times for conservation treatments are about 4-6 months. Rush services are many times available for an additional fee.

We offer a variety of treatments for books. In many cases, the original cover can be restored. Rebinding in a sympathetic material (cloth, leather, etc) is also an option.
“Foxing” is a generic term used to describe a range of deterioration mechanisms in paper and photographic documents – the thing they have in common is that they all tend to appear as small brown spots.
We do not offer appraisals or authentications, as it is considered a conflict of interest in the conservation field, and is strictly prohibited by AIC’s ethical guidelines.  The American Society of Appraisers provides a searchable database on their website if you are interested in these services.

Yes, they will.  It is imperative to be certain the mat board used to frame your work of art on paper is made from 100% alpha cellulose or pure cotton rag.  Crescent mat board offers an excellent line of museum quality mat boards appropriate for framing fine art.  Mat boards that are made from wood pulp will degrade more quickly, and cause mat burn.  Even when you use the highest quality mat board, you should anticipate replacing the backing board and window mat housing your artwork once every twenty years or so, as these boards will deteriorate over time eventually, and its best to prevent any damage from occurring by replacing them periodically.

Framing with a UV-filtered plexiglass glazing is ideal.  Regardless of the UV-filtered framing package, it is still best to minimize direct and excessive exposure to sunlight as much as possible.  LED lighting is ideal.  Materials that are most prone to fading due to light exposure are newsprint, blueprints, gouache, watercolors and many materials used in the creation of Modern Art.  Once a work of art has become damaged by light exposure, although aesthetics can often be improved, the damage itself cannot be reversed. 

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