Tag Archives: Papercrafts

Old Book Blossoms into New Vase

This week’s Once A Book project comes from the blog Atypical Type A by Alicia Parsons.

When Ms. Parsons was planning her literary themed wedding, she turned old books into these unique vases for decoration.  There’s so much I love about that whole idea, starting with the literary themed wedding. Fabulous!

Her tutorial, Make a vintage book vase, is easy to follow, requires only basic craft supplies, and makes a vase that is lovely to look at, but it is just for looks.  To make a vase that holds water and a stem or two, use a book with a spine wide enough to wrap around a small test tube or florist water tube.  Insert the tube before adhering the end pages in step 6.

As always, with Once A Book projects, if you try it, send a picture and I’ll post it here.

Resources: Once A Book, Atypical Type A, The Daily Post.


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The Power of Pop-Up

Peter Dahmen sculpts with paper.  He turns the flat, relatively mundane, everyday item into 3-D forms that fold up, reach out, curve over, bend under, and swirl around. The effect is phenomenal.

After watching the sculptures come to life in this video, it’s hard to imagine they are made from plain old paper.  Once again, I’m inspired by the power of the creative mind and the commitment it takes for artists to bring their ideas to life.

If you’re feeling very ambitious, there’s a tutorial.  I suppose creating something like this, with the planning and modeling already done, is a possibility, but just watching the process shows how much detail goes into each sculpture, even one as small as this.

Resources: Peter Dahmen, The Daily Post.

Once A Book, Now an Easter Wreath

Easter is less than a month away, so it’s the perfect time to share this Once a Book project for a Book Page Egg Wreath.

The easy to follow tutorial from lemon tree creations uses plastic Easter eggs, old book pages, Mod Podge (or any découpage glue), a Styrofoam wreath form, glue gun, and a few other basic craft supplies.

The end result is an elegant Easter decoration that you’ll want to leave hanging long after the jelly beans and Peeps are gone.

The full tutorial can be found at the Framed Book Page Egg Wreath.

Resources: Once A Book, lemon tree creations, The Daily Post.

Finally, A Use for All Those Phone Books

How many phone books do you get a year?

How many do you use?

When we moved into this house there were eight gigantic phone books and four small ones sitting on a closet shelf.  The shelf was sagging under the weight.  Two days after our phone service was turned on, another two or three books were delivered.

I don’t know about you, but I haven’t used a phone book in years.  Everything’s online!  Maybe it’s time for those businesses trying to make a buck with their version of the Yellow Pages to rethink their business model.  Enough with the dead trees already.

On the positive side, phone books don’t have to be a complete waste.  Like any other book, they can be modified into something useful and fun.  This week’s Once A Book project turns an old phone book into a pen and pencil holder.

Chica at the ChicaAndJo.com, posted this tutorial on how to Recycle a phone book into a pen organizer. The tutorial has photos to help with the process, and although there are a lot of steps, it seems straight forward.  It’s a great way to do something useful with these dinosaurs, but if you’re feeling more ambitious (and have a lot of phone books), here’s an option.

Joking aside, the phone books are not just a nuisance in the closet.  They use too many resources: paper, ink, gas for delivery, for something that most people toss directly into recycling, or worse, the trash.  To stop delivery, visit Yellow Pages Go Green.

Resources: Once A Book, ChicaAndJo.com, Yellow Pages Go Green, The Daily Post.

Old Pages Turn to Book Beads

Most of the Once A Book projects I’ve posted so far involve removing some or all of the inside pages of an old book.  I know that is tantamount to heresy for some, but maybe I can redeem myself a little bit with today’s project.

Book beads from the smallest forest takes recycling a step further by putting those sad old pages back into circulation.  They’re called “book beads” because the process is the same as the binding process used to make children’s board books.  You don’t have to use book pages, though.  Any type of paper will work, but book pages are especially fitting because the “pages” flip, like a tiny round book.

The beautifully photographed step by step tutorial can be found by clicking quick tutorial : : book beads.  Don’t bother looking for the written instructions, it’s such an easy process, the photos tell the whole story.

As always, if you decide to make this project, send pictures and I’ll post them here.

Resources: the smallest forest, Once A Book, The Daily Post

Creative Genius in a Pile of Colored Construction Paper

For more information on the artist and examples of her incredible work, visit her website JenStark.com.

If These Walls Could Read: The Floating Bookshelf

In seven simple steps, videojug.com shows us how to turn an old book into a floating bookshelf.

This Once A Book project can be used to stack other books, display artwork or photos, or as an art installation on its own.  Stagger a few  shelves along the wall or make the base sit both parallel and perpendicular to the wall.  It’s DIY … have fun with it!

In the video’s comments section, some killjoy says that you can buy a bracket for about $10 to do the same thing.  That’s true, but what’s the fun of that?  It’s much more organic (and ecologically friendly) to make your own.  Besides, the pride of looking at the shelf and knowing you did it yourself easily trumps an off-the-shelf purchase.

For all the details, visit How To Install Invisible Shelves on videojug.com.

Resources: Once A Book, videojug.com, The Daily Post

Quick and Easy Clock for the Literary Crafter

In case you don’t have enough books on your bookshelves, there aren’t enough books stacked on your night stand, piled next to the couch, or teetering on the coffee table, here is another way to bring books into your home.

This Once A Book project from the bloggers at FactoryDirectCraft.com is a quick project that will take about an hour from start to finish.  Use any book you like.  Heavier books can be propped on a table, lighter ones can be hung.

To complete this project, you only need three things:

  • A book
  • A clock kit
  • An X-ACTO or box cutter
  • A drill or an awl is helpful but not necessary.

The tutorial can be found here: Upcycling – Turn an Old Book into a Working Clock.

If you make a book clock, send me a picture, and I’ll post it here.

Resources: Once A Book, FactoryDirectCraft.com, The Daily Post

Old Hardcover Finds New Life Protecting E-Books

This Once A Book project feels sacrilegious.  Desecrating an old hardcover to protect a new e-reader feels irreverent, disrespectful.  So very “Et tu, Brute.”

But it’s a great project, and any self-respecting old hardcover would be honored to be put to such creative use.

How To Make a Kindle Cover from a Hollowed Out Hardback Book comes from WonderHowTo.com, the giant user-generated, free how-to video directory.

Resources:  Once A Book, WonderHowTo.com, Et tu, Brute, The Daily Post

Once a Book, Now a Gorgeous Wreath

If you’re the type who can’t bear to do anything with a book besides read it, this project isn’t for you.   If, on the other hand, you’re a crafty type just itching to do something with the stack of old romance novels stashed in the corner of the living room, this could be your next project …

Book Page Wreaths

If you can’t resist this craft, but hate the thought of hurting a book, try it with magazine pages.

Resources:  Living with Lindsay, The Daily Post