One of my favorite tools is the nano moisture mist spray device. It was originally made for spraying your face to rehydrate it on hot days, but it can also be used to moisten paper items. It provides an instant and even mist of tiny particles for local application without the use of a humidification chamber. It can also be used to apply a small amount of water to re-moistenable tissue in situ.
Recently, I treated an album to prepare it for digitisation, and I used this mist spray to humidify newspaper clippings protruding from it. The papers had dried and were brittle and yellowed, with folds, tears and creases. A mist spray is perfect for items like this one which are fragile and need to be treated in situ. In this case it worked very well. After lightly brushing the areas of damage, I sprayed the papers and then put felt and a light weight on the humidified area. I later sprayed mist on the pages a second time to smooth out the remaining creases.
Of course, we can also use it to refresh ourselves when we are tired and feel dehydrated at work or on a long flight. It is very easy to use. You just take off the lid and add water, and then pull down the switch. The cost of this item varies, from less than £10 to about £20.
Satomi Sasaki Verhagen has recently graduated with an MA in Conservation from Camberwell College of Arts, London. She has had placements at the Wellcome Collection, the V&A, the National Maritime Museum and University College London. Prior to becoming a conservator, she worked as an artist.