Transform old or unwanted books and magazines into something attractive and inspiring with these 35 innovative ideas. Packed full of projects for everything from greetings cards and stationery to room decorations and display scenes, you'll be amazed at how easy it is to repurpose pages into wonderful items for your home. .
Introduction to the book by the author:
Looking through my own collection of books on the shelves in my studio. I realized that I love books for many different reasons. Besides the pleasure they give in the reading, and the information and facts I can glean from them, the graphic designer in me loves the layout, the different typefaces and ornate lettering, and the beautifully embossed covers (from the 19th century to the wonderful graphic covers of the 50s and 60s). I often buy old books purely for the cover and prop them up around the house to be admired as mini works of art. The artist and craftsman in me appreciates the feel of the book, the method of binding, and the textures and variety of paper from the translucent and thin to the luxuriously thick and creamy. I even like the smell of books, although I admit that it is a new book scent I like, rather than an old musty smell!
Books, without you even realizing, can make a huge and lasting impression. I know this because while researching this book in many wonderful old bookshops, I sometimes came across a book from my childhood. I may not have thought about that book for many, many years but, on opening the book, each illustration and the written text had been firmly planted in my mind. The happy childhood memories came flooding back.
So, if I love books so much, you may wonder how I am able to justify attacking them with a scalpel and a pair of scissors!
I have to admit that the first time I cut up a book it did not seem the right thing to do. However, that feeling of guilt dispersed as I began to create unique and beautiful objects from a simple page or group of pages.
Saying that, I do have my own book of rules that I have subconsciously set up. I do not cut up rare books. I seek out tatty and damaged books. I actually love finding an interesting book that has a few pages ruined by a child's scribbles, an ink stain, a missing cover, or torn pages. You don't even have to use old books; some of my favourite projects are made from the pages of old home wares catalogues. It is also a known fact that many thousands of books are pulped each year or end up in landfill. Being realistic, I know that some books do come to the end of their lives and lose relevance over the passage of time. But, by turning
something into art that would otherwise disregarded as rubbish, the forgotten pages are brought back to life, becoming part of the creations that add individuality and character to your home.
I respect books but, as a designer and craft-maker, I also believe that constructing something unique from the pages invites the same respect. It opens up the book to create new ideas, new fascination, and wonder. It invites new discussion, revives old memories, and creates new ones. So go and create!
1st edition, 2012, hardback, 128pp, full colour throughout, 19.7 x 24.2cm