Thursday, March 11, 2010

Book Art

I am a major fan of the book page crafts. I have several versions of "book page wreaths" that you can find hanging throughout my house. However, working with all of these pages from books got me thinking, "what about the book covers?" I quickly started to realize my book covers were laying useless, and I could just not let this be!

So, here was my solution to that problem...

(Now before you cringe, I also have a solution for all of you book lovers out there. Trust me, my husband wouldn't just let me murder good literature for the sake of artwork. We simply reattached the book jackets to the classics, sans hardcover, and they are still very much readable! Mostly only the dictionaries and thesauruses will be used for other crafts later.)

Here is how I did it. I started with about 20 books, most of which were judged by their cover, so that they would look good in my dining room and/ or living room. (Though I did choose about 4 favorite titles to throw in the mix to make it a little more meaningful for our family.) I then simply removed the covers with scissors as seen below.

I used an $8 piece of birch wood from Lowes as the base. I chose this wood because it was light weight and would be easier to hang.

I did NOT glue anything down yet. I went down the side and around the perimeter to make certain their were no edges or gaps of the wood being seen.

When the entire perimeter was complete, I still did NOT glue anything down, but then made a second and third layer to give the piece more visual interest. I was happy at this point that I had not begun gluing, because I had to rework the layout SEVERAL times to make it look the way I wanted it too. I was after an appearance of the books coming out towards you at the center, so the thickness of the hardcover, mixed with its texture had to be played around with a bit.

Once I came up with something that worked, I began gluing down each cover, starting the corner and working my way around the perimeter again in the original pattern I had followed.

To hang it, I simply used picture brackets I also got from Lowes for about $2. I just measured three inches in from the top corners and screwed them in. Then I connected a thin gauge wire between the two brackets.

It only took about 2 hours from start to finish (minus finding the perfect place to hang it!), and cost less than $30.00 for all of the materials. In the end, I was pleased with how it turned out. As soon as I hung it on the wall (without waiting for Matt to help measure it out...oops...) I was pleasantly surprised to see how the piece seemed to bow at in the middle just like I had hoped. It looks great on the wall. After moving from its original place in the living room to the dining room, I have no intentions of taking it down any time soon!

I have been struggling with what to call it. I guess it would be reclaimed art of some kind. I have found myself in the past few days trying to tell people about it and saying, "well, its, uh book sculpture for the, uh, wall?" Makes no sense to me either, don't worry. So if you come up with something better, comment and let me know!

This week I will be linking up to the CSI project. Stop by and take a look!




Kathryn March 11, 2010 at 6:59 AM  

Cool idea and great way to upcycle the book bindings into a book nook hodge podge.

Tiffany March 11, 2010 at 7:04 AM  

Very creative idea! It looks great in you dining room, Patrice! Love it!

Erin A March 11, 2010 at 7:44 AM  

Wow, it's so cool. It looks perfect in your dining room! I would have a hard time eating dinner and trying not to sneak glances at the titles in the books the whole time. :)

Fawnda@Fireflies and Jellybeans March 11, 2010 at 8:11 AM  

Very very cool! I love it!

TBonesMom March 11, 2010 at 8:22 AM  

Love it in the dining room. It reminds me of the "art piece" in the movie Twilight that they made of all their graduation caps.

Nicely done, I'm jealous of this one. Someday when I have a nice house I will use this. For now, it will be safely tucked away in the craft idea archives!

Laura March 11, 2010 at 9:00 AM  

That is just awesome! I love your idea and would love to give it a go in one of our "I don't know what to put here" areas. Great job!

Jessica March 11, 2010 at 9:22 AM  

Patrice this is my favorite. I'm going to have to steal it(hmm.. where could I put it.) ps.your dining room is beautiful.

extreme personal measures March 11, 2010 at 10:04 AM  

How creative!
I really like this!
Following you over from Shabby Chic Cottage!
I am a follower!
Please stop by!

gina March 11, 2010 at 1:37 PM  

Book art. That's would i would call it. It's a real conversation piece!

Leigh of Tales from Bloggeritaville March 11, 2010 at 6:44 PM  

What a cool idea! Very interesting! Thanks for linking up to Thrifty Thursday and sharing this week! I hope you will come back to visit me soon. If you haven't already, be sure to enter the giveaway.

Have a wonderful weekend.
Tales from Bloggeritaville

Jen Creed March 11, 2010 at 7:03 PM  

LOVE it! And your dining room is so chic, the "sculpture" is perfect!

Dana March 11, 2010 at 8:07 PM  

It turned out great Patrice and looks fabulous in your dining room!

Nathalie March 11, 2010 at 11:04 PM  

Came over from Somewhat simple and didn't realize that this was a brand new blog until I spent a little time looking around. I am a follower now! Love what you gals are doing :D

Melissa March 12, 2010 at 7:19 AM  

What a perfect project for a book lover! I am also anxiously awaiting the book page flower wreath. :)

Frugal Home Designs March 12, 2010 at 7:58 AM  

Wow, very original. It looks great.

Sarah @ Hennessey House March 12, 2010 at 9:07 AM  

wow, this is insanely creative and clever. it turned out amazing! and i'm impressed that you were able to salvage the pages!

Grammer March 12, 2010 at 9:57 AM  

Clever idea:-) How about "I've got you covered!"

Cheyenne Rodriguez March 12, 2010 at 12:38 PM  

What an original idea! We are in the process of looking for some kind of wall art for our home study and something like this would be PREFECT! Thanks for the inspiration!

Cheryl @ a pretty cool life. March 13, 2010 at 7:15 AM  

So creative and modern looking! Great job!

Sonja @ Craft-Werk March 13, 2010 at 7:59 AM  

The perfect wall object for book lovers. I have never seen anything like it before, but I love it. I like the overlapping arrangement. Fantastic idea. (Spotted you on Weekend Wrap Up at T&J)
I'd be thrilled if you added your link to my party at

Jean March 13, 2010 at 11:39 AM  

I love decorating with books, but this is a whole new idea!

Funky Junk Interiors March 13, 2010 at 11:45 AM  

This is so cool! Way to think outside the box! Love the layers. So unique.

Thanks for linking up to SNS!
FJ Donna

Laura March 13, 2010 at 2:22 PM  

What a cute idea. My husband and I love books so this would be a great idea for our home.

Andy Porter March 13, 2010 at 4:38 PM  

What a unique idea...It looks so stunning against the chocolate wall. I love your blog name and header! Nice look!

junkermidge March 13, 2010 at 7:33 PM  

That is very, very cool!

Candy Bello March 13, 2010 at 11:37 PM  

what a neat idea!


Fawnda@Fireflies and Jellybeans March 14, 2010 at 1:29 PM  

I just wnated to let you know that I featured you here:

: )

Sonja @ Craft-Werk March 14, 2010 at 5:53 PM  

Hey Patrice - thanks for linking up to Star on Saturday. You were one of my star posts and I have displayed your great book art on my post of highlights -
Keep crafting ;-)

Rachelle March 14, 2010 at 9:09 PM  

Looks great! Too cool!


Patti @ Pandoras Box March 15, 2010 at 7:22 AM  

This is so unique and clever...and fills in a large wall nicely. I would call it "WORDless art", as opposed to worthless art..haha

Char @ Crap I've Made March 15, 2010 at 8:52 AM  

I came over from TCB and I LOVE this!

Kaysi March 15, 2010 at 9:37 AM  

What a great idea!! I love how it turned out!

Katie March 15, 2010 at 10:53 AM  

Wow very fun and unique!

Gina March 15, 2010 at 12:12 PM  

It looks great and I like the -idea- of that sort of thing on my wall; but I love books so much that I have trouble -thinking- about the idea of destroying a book, even a book I don't like. I can't ever throw a book away and this is throwing the inners of a book away, yes?

-But- it does look great and it is a great idea. So kudos to you. :)

Teri March 15, 2010 at 1:21 PM  

Yay! I freakin' love this! Congrats on being featured at Today's Creative Blog! :)

Julie March 15, 2010 at 1:30 PM  

Love this idea! So creative. And what a great way to display your favorite titles. Thanks for sharing with Made it Monday! Jules

Patrice March 15, 2010 at 1:54 PM  

Just so everyone knows... I didn't throw the insides of the books away! I still have them all! We just reattached the dust cover in place of the hard cover! :)

Patrice March 15, 2010 at 1:55 PM  

And thanks for all of your comments and support! We are having fun with our new blogging adventure for sure!

Sara March 15, 2010 at 2:06 PM  

This is so cool!!

Remodelaholic March 15, 2010 at 3:44 PM  

That is so cool! I really love it! I would just be really careful about inviting a librarian over to dinner! LOL

Angie Holden March 15, 2010 at 3:56 PM  

So very creative!! Absolutely awesome!

thekreativelife March 16, 2010 at 6:09 AM  

Love this! It looks fabulous!

avisiontoremember March 16, 2010 at 7:12 AM  

that is so cool!

I would love for you to link up to check me out saturdays over at my blog

Julie from JulieChats March 16, 2010 at 6:05 PM  

This is SO COOL! What an awesome idea, thanks for sharing & including all these great photos!

Stopping by from Today's Creative! Just signed up to follow you. Stop by my scrapbooking blog when you get a chance I'm always looking for a few more crafty followers!

Anonymous March 16, 2010 at 8:39 PM  

Patrice, I love your book art! It's so fun. I just featured this project on my blog tonight.

Wendy March 17, 2010 at 12:03 AM  

Very clever!!

Julie March 17, 2010 at 8:39 AM  

I love this, books can be beautiful.

Helena March 17, 2010 at 10:48 AM  

This is so creative! I love it- especially in that last picture, where you can see the whole room. So nice.

Thank you for linking this up to A Little Craft Therapy with Life in the Pitts.

{oc cottage} March 17, 2010 at 8:28 PM  

There are no words! {sorry, I couldn't help myself!} This is majorly cool... I'm thinking all Jane!

m ^..^

Jen @ March 17, 2010 at 11:27 PM  

Wow - that is a really cool idea! I love how modern it looks too!

Thanks so much for linking up to my party. I really appreciate it!


Miss Mustard Seed March 18, 2010 at 6:58 AM  

What a creative idea and a fun way to show a love of reading. That's definitely a conversation starter.

Carolyn @ My Backyard Eden March 18, 2010 at 5:54 PM  

Very clever! I love all of the color variations in the bindings!

Was it pretty heavy when you got them all mounted?

Thanks for linking up to Make it Yours Day at My Backyard Eden!

Patrice March 18, 2010 at 6:20 PM  

Thanks guys!
Not too heavy at all! We didn't even have to anchor it in the wall. Just two standard picture nails!

Maryann @ Domestically-Speaking March 19, 2010 at 12:40 AM  

Such a cool idea!

Pamela March 23, 2010 at 7:57 AM  

I didn't read all 54 comments to your book cover art so not sure if you've seen this but thought you might be interested. It's a headboard made from book covers. I think it could be very handsome made from black and grey covers.

Anna Marie March 28, 2010 at 7:10 PM  

Love this idea. I wrote about it on my blog! SEe it at

Patricia @ 9th and Denver April 26, 2010 at 12:02 AM  

I love this piece.
Very creative. Here's a few titles for you:
"ART Books"
"Cover to Cover"
"Read all over"
"The Writing on the Wall"

Just off the top of my head. Loved it...I imagine we'll be seeing more of these "BEST SELLERS" all over blog land!

Anonymous May 13, 2010 at 12:34 AM  

This is so cool! Great job but where can I find that many hard back books that look that good. Green Submarine let me know about your blog and I'm so glad she did.

Pam May 14, 2010 at 5:04 AM  

Super inventive project; love it!

Tara May 15, 2010 at 8:30 AM  

Hi. I wanted to know if you would like to be a guest blogger over at Trendy Treehouse with this project? I have just over 1300 followers, so it would be great exposure for your blog.

If you are interested just email me at

Thanks, Tara

Erin @ Crafts and Sutch May 29, 2010 at 9:26 PM  

Wow! That is stunning! So creative and would look equally good in an office or library! Love, love, LOVE it!

Erin :)

Bitterroot Mama June 9, 2010 at 11:19 AM  

I love it! We love books and this would be a great little piece for somewhere in the house.

Bree Johnson June 22, 2010 at 10:19 AM  

super super cute idea! maybe i can do something with my pretty books!

blabbing maggie June 22, 2010 at 10:40 AM  

very cool! saw this on CSI project and may have to do it myself as well!

Jen~ Lipstick and Laundry June 22, 2010 at 12:59 PM  

I heart BOOKS! This is the PERFECT wall art!

Megan/Brassy Apple June 22, 2010 at 1:22 PM  

such a great way to add color, texture and dimension!

great job!

stopping by from the CSI project

Kate June 23, 2010 at 9:47 PM  

Oh, I saw this somewhere out there when you first posted and LOVED it! Visiting from CSI, and following. ;)

Katie P July 17, 2010 at 8:28 AM  

Love love LOVE this! And it looks fantastic in the room!! But where did you find the books?? Did you just go to an old used book store? Or did you use your own?

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