This post is brought to you by Edward Stuart.
To say I love books and art is an understatement. What would be a better word? Obsessive? Enchanted? In either case, if I could sit in a library all day, it would be wonderful. I love being around books. End of story.
Now, for you book and art lovers like me, I really wanted to incorporate old and vintage books into some type of art project. There is a great bookstore located in Boise, Idaho that I always travel to (Hyde Park Bookstore) that is filled with vintage books, and that old book smell (come on, you know you love that!). As I was slowly passing by each bookshelf, I found myself wanting to integrate all of these books into art projects—and hey, some books need attention after being set on a shelf for so long!
Now, don’t get scared. I know that some people really, really hate destroying books. I get it! I do too— we all know those people that completely rip out pages and turn them into origami (eeeeek!). We want to die inside when we see this–but this is for the greater good of art, and technically, you aren’t destroying a book if you’re reusing it, right? Maybe “destroy” isn’t the best word… construct, produce, redesign.
Creative Ideas to Reuse Old Books:
Headboard (Cork Board, Multiple books, Nails)
Estimated Time: 30 minutes
You can do this easily by purchasing a cork board as your headboard (cheap and still effective).
- Open up the book to the page you want shown on your headboard (do these for all of the books you are hanging up).
- You’ll need strong nails for this next part—and don’t worry, the books will still live wonderfully after this step.
- Next, you set up your headboard exactly how you want it to look with all the books you have open.
- Set the nails on EACH corner of the book; this way, they won’t flap and fall over, or annoy you.
And done! Now you have an awesome, knowledgeable headboard.
Secret Hiding Spot (Book, Box Cutter, Glue, Paint Brush)
Estimated Time: 1 hour
- First, pick out the first couple of pages in the beginning of the book that you don’t want cut out.
- Next, mix a solution of glue and water (just enough to make the glue a little runny)
- Dip the brush in the solution, and coat the outer layer of the pages with this. Place something on top after coating for extra pressure, and allow fifteen minutes of drying time
- Open up the book, and outline a box on the first page you want cut. Cut within the lines.
- Keep cutting the pages until you get to the back cover. Be slow with this process: the cleaner and smoother it is, the better.
- Bring out the solution of glue and water again, and paint the inside of the cut pages to keep those glued together. Allow 10 minutes of dry time.
- Place your secret stash in this book!
Pen Holder (Yellow Pages Book, Knife, Glue)
Estimated Time: 30 minutes
This might seem complicated, but it’s really simple!
- Using a knife, cut the front and back cover of your book so you just have the spine and all the pages with it.
- Do these to four books—then connect the spines together by gluing the spins and twirl the pages around.
These are just a few ideas that you can use with your old or vintage books. Remember, it’s not destroying if you’re reusing it for artful purposes. Books are more than just reading and gaining knowledge from; they are just as beautiful and important as art itself! Books and art go hand in hand, and these projects help demonstrate that. Have fun with these projects!
Guest post by Edward Stuart whose writings are sponsored by the canvas art supplier canvasgalleryart.com. He frequently blogs on the topics of art, art history, design, home remodeling, and his kids.