Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Book Cover Tutorial

We recently had some beautiful cabinetry installed in our Master.  (Finally I have drawers!)  Anyway, the top portion of cabinetry is shelves.  I wanted to create displays on some of those shelves and incorporate my books but I wanted a cohesive look.  The answer was to cover some of my old books with Kraft paper.  
This is how I did it...

First, gather your tools:  Old books (you can keep existing dust jackets on them and just cover over them or remove the dust jacket), a roll of Kraft paper (or any other paper...you could even use cool shopping bags!) Large ruler, tape measure, pencil and x-acto knife or scissor.

Now, take your book measurements.  Measure top to bottom and distance around.  Mine, shown here, measured about 8 1/2 x 13.

Add a couple inches to all sides and cut the paper to match.  You can see I added about 3 inches  to the top and bottom and about 2 inches to each end.  Next, fold down the top and bottom giving the folds a nice crease.  Top to bottom should be just slightly larger than your book.  Then fold in each end the same way (before creasing you might want to wrap it around your book to be sure the length is comfortable, even when the book is closed.)

Next, slip one side of the book into the cover, then do the same with the other side (you may need to open the book wide to easily insert the second cover without tearing the paper).

No glue, no tape, NOTHING holds the cover on the book? That's right.  It's like magic! But actually you can see here that the folds themselves are what hold the book in place.

And here you have it....

But wait!  I'm not finished....... I really liked the look of all these books stacked together, and I really liked the way the pages were at various stages of "yellow", but being me, and knowing that these books were for decorative purposes, I needed a bit more embellishment.

So I added some decorative tape, found at Michaels.  (You can leave this step off if you want, or you could draw or do some beautiful lettering on the cover.  The options are limitless!)

And ta-da!  A beautiful, inexpensive way to dress up your books!

Oh, BTW, I had an adorable audience during this project.  They were so good, they deserved TWO treats! Good Girls!

Anyway, I love these book covers.  Like I said you could make them out of wrapping paper, Kraft paper, brown paper bags or even out of a cool shopping bag from your favorite mall or store! Great for back to school and a great project to involve your kids, even teens!  As a bonus, it will save the life of those expensive school books!  Who doesn't love that?

I hope you try this great idea.  If you do, share your results with me!  I'd love to see what you come up with!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Summer Obsession

Well, you can see that I haven't been here for a little while.  Sorry.  I'll explain more on that later.

For now, though, I wanted to share with you my new obsession!  I have discovered soldering!  OMG, it is a blast and a fun change from making my dolls.  (I love making my dolls but yearned for something new this summer)

I've been hitting every antique mart that I can find in Arizona and California on the hunt for antique bottles. Even filled an empty suitcase with bottles on our holiday in Monterey.

I've found a lot of really great bottles.  Next I dug through my vast collection of shells and coral.  I have shells from California, Mexico, Florida and beyond!  (just a sample here)

Then the fun began...planning, taping, soldering and applying the patina.  I'm obsessed!

I've placed some of these beautiful creations in my Etsy shop.  Come visit!