I love books. If you’re reading this blog, you probably do, too.

How do you feel about making stuff from books?

I’m not talking about putting quotes, characters, or cover art from a book on something. I mean an object that is made up of part, or all, of something that was once a book someone could read. Some of these books, perhaps, weren’t readable anymore anyway, but I think some were, until they were cut apart.

Book covers lined with fabric and made into purses…

Books with the pages hollowed out into little boxes…

booksafe by Ich

There’s a hole in my book!
Image from Wikimedia by Ich.

Book pages cut out and used as the background for art…

Pieces of pages coated in resin and made into necklaces, rings, or other jewelry…

Books with pages folded so the edge presents a word or shape…

And more…

Do you have any made-out-of-books items?

About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

7 responses »

  1. Marcia says:

    I have seen various things made from old books over the years, and I have to admit, most of them were clever and fun. It’s better than throwing them on a pile and burning them, and I usually enjoy repurposed art and useful items. I’ve seen small tables made from them, bookends, and things of that nature. (I can’t help but think of the old Seinfeld episode where Kramer was all excited about a “coffee table book” that was really a coffee table.) πŸ™‚

    Maybe we should collect some pictures, just for fun. Or better yet, make some stuff ourselves. I did buy some very old textbooks in rich colors that I was going to paint scenes on the front of, once. I still have the books. Unpainted. 😯

    • caitlinstern says:

      Oh, yes, reusing is better than trashing them. I was mostly thinking of items like book-purses made from new books–I’ve seen the exact hardcovers in a bookstore, and they are beautiful, but I still feel a little sad for the ones that get bought to be gutted.

      Which is not to say I don’t rather want one. πŸ˜‰

      Get painting! πŸ™‚

      • Marcia says:

        Oh, I think I’d like one of those, too. How would it be if I bought 2 copies of my books and made things with the extra copy? Nah. I’d end up giving them to friends who haven’t read the book, yet. But outdated textbooks are fun to use for things, and wouldn’t make me feel guilty. And where have you seen these purses? I want to look.

        I’d get painting, but my whole studio has been turned into a sick room for our oldest cat, who is not faring well with the younger ones these days. I’m going to have to reclaim it soon, though. I have some things I want to make for Tabitha and Kaelen.

        • caitlinstern says:

          Etsy.com. Put in ‘made from books’ in the search and prepare to be astounded.

          • Marcia says:

            Did it…and was appropriately astounded! I LOVE some of those things, including the purses. I’m crazy about the lamp made from encyclopedia volumes, and the earrings made from the Harry Potter page that says “Expecto Patronum.” SO cute. I saw a Sense and Sensibility purse, and would have gotten it for you immediately if it hadn’t been $120. Not that you aren’t WORTH it, you understand. Just that I don’t HAVE it. There are some great ideas there, some I might try. But a couple I’d love to buy. AND there’s a PDF file for $9.99 with instructions how to make your own purse. It says NO SEWING, so it might be worth it. I’m still pondering that one. Cool suggestion, thanks. I’m wondering if eBay might have some that could be won for cheap(er)?

          • caitlinstern says:

            Etsy gets a fair degree of my money, usually from the temptation of shirts, bookmarks, and jewelry.

            Do NOT get me an astoundingly expensive purse, Marcia! πŸ˜›

            If you want to make you own, go for it, though I’m not sure how practical they are. My purse ranking goes–can I fit a book in it? (As well as a wallet, etc.)
            Yes? Good.
            No? Get a different purse.
            Though a nice big hardback might work… πŸ˜€

  2. Marcia says:

    Yeah, no worries on that score. I couldn’t afford one of those, believe me. Gonna have to sell a whole lot more of my OWN books first. πŸ™‚ I like big purses, too. Have to fit my Kindle inside, plus all sorts of other things. But a smaller one now and then would be fun. And I happen to have duplicate large Wizard of Oz coffee table books. One of them would make a fun purse, since I collect WOZ stuff. (Though I have quit adding to my collections now. Too much stuff everywhere.) Tabitha likes WOZ, too, though…she’d love it, probably. For another year. Then it wouldn’t be cool enough. πŸ˜‰ But that lamp…I would really like that in my library. I’m considering it. I could probably make it, but never would, and it was reasonably priced, too. Hmmmmmm…..

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