Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Covering books with fabric

I've gotten slightly hooked on picking out fabric.  It's a dangerous little habit because I keep wanting to buy some and then find a purpose later.  Jo-Anns can be a very dangerous place because it makes me feel all kinds of crafty until I get home.  It's a good thing I can usually remind myself of buyer's guilt before making a purchase.

One of my recent excuses for buying fabric has been to recover hardcover books.  My only previous experience was using a paper grocery bag on textbooks in grade school.  I don't think they would appreciate getting books back covered in glue like I use here.

-fabric (amount depends on size of your book)
-a book
-spray glue (I use this)

I've been picky about what books I'll keep in the house because I hate the idea of books here I won't ever read.  I've bought a few from the clearance shelves at Half Priced Books for a few bucks but usually from authors I at least know I like.  Then we were at the downtown library and saw their book sale shelves - 5 for $1.  You better believe I scooped some up for that price, not caring what the titles or authors were.  20 cents for a book?  Yes please.  If I think of them as just decoration then I don't mind so much what's inside.

I've used leftover fabric from other projects (shown below is leftover from our kitchen valance) and occasionally, when the sale is right or I have good coupons, bought 1/2 yard just for this.  It's usually only a few dollars and it gives me a use for different fabrics.  

So, start with a book you don't mind covering.  Lighter covers are best if you have white or light colored fabric.  Cut about 1 inch larger than the book.  I start with the book about an inch from the edge on the front or back, then roll it along the spine and cut an inch.

Give one cover a good coating of spray glue (I get to be a bit of a sticky mess doing this) and press the cover firmly to the fabric, making sure to smooth out any bubbles.  Use scissors to cut along the top and bottom spines so you are able to fold the top and bottom edges inside like so:

The corners are a little tricky so trim a little fabric and fold them over the best you can, applying more glue as needed.  Repeat on the other cover.

For the spine, trim the fabric to about 1cm and then use a screwdriver to tuck the fabric into the spine as best you can.

And voila!   You now have a beautiful book covered in the fabric of your choosing!  Let it dry for at least 24 hours (or according to your glue instructions) so you don't end up with a glue mess.  I get ridiculously excited when I finish one of these.  Using scrap fabric and 20 cent books makes for a pretty cheap project, and one I intend to utilize in many room of our house.

The first two I covered are currently in our front room but could be moved all over since most of our house as a blue/green color scheme.  The plain book on the bottom was a dollar store find, that I bought solely because it had a blue/green cover.  And I got it when exchanging some other items.  Did you know you can only exchange items at the dollar store, not return them?  I've done that more than once.  Make your own assumptions for what it says that we return things to the dollar store.

While typing this up I just thought of another room I could use more books in so I think a trip back to the library (to buy books, we already go multiple times a week to borrow them) and Jo-Anns might be in order.  Maybe. 

I roughly followed the instructions here

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