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Subject: Leather shoes

Leather shoes

From: Helena Jaeschke <helena.jaeschke>
Date: Tuesday, February 21, 2006
Hanna Grabner <hanna_grabner [at] hotmail__com>

>In the course of my diploma thesis I have been confronted with the
>task of reshaping two leather shoes (dating from around 300 to 700
>AD) which were excavated at a burial site in Egypt at the end of the
>19th century. ...

Like Hanna, we have found that ancient Egyptian leather can
gelatinise when humidified. However, the leather can regain
considerable flexibility when consolidated with Paraloid B72 in
acetone instead. This method was used to reshape several piece of
leather in the collection of the Petrie Museum of Egyptian
Archaeology, London, including a flattened, dirty and very hard
leather shoe. After consolidation it could be returned to its
original shape and supported while the last of the solvent
evaporated. The surface could then be cleaned. Details of the method
are in

    Richard L. Jaeschke.
    A Method of Reshaping Cartonnage without Water (p. 23-28) in
    Conservation in Ancient Egyptian Collections. Papers given at
    the conference organised by the United Kingdom Institute for
    Conservation, Archaeology Section, and International Academic
    Projects, held at London, 20-21 July 1995. Edited by Carol E.
    Brown, Fiona Macalister and Margot M. Wright, London, Archetype
    Publications, 1995. (18 x 24 cm; V, 184 p., map, fig., ill.,
    ISBN 1873132-808; pr. UKP 17.50

Although this method was first used on cartonnage, we have found it
to be successful on a range of organic substances of plant and
animal origin. Hope this helps.

Richard and Helena Jaeschke
Archaeological conservators

                  Conservation DistList Instance 19:41
                   Distributed: Monday, March 6, 2006
                       Message Id: cdl-19-41-001
Received on Tuesday, 21 February, 2006

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