My affair with books began long ago, as a child growing up in the deep South.  Summers were spent curled under a shade tree or sitting outdoors on a bench with a good book in tow.  Even now, my reading list usually hits 3-5 books at a time.  Not that I read them in a reasonable amount of time, but I can’t seem to devote my mind to only one.


Decorating with books has always been a touch of mine.  Pulling out A Christmas Carol and A Night Before Christmas in December is part of our yearly holiday decor.
I’ve been wanting to try an inexpensive way to add personality to my “decorating” books, and I have seen/read about people covering them with all sorts of mediums.  I have been meaning to try it for quite some time, but when I visited Drab to Fab yesterday, I had to try it…asap.  Thanks for the inspiration, girls!
(side note–I’ve really been enjoying photography lately, and I have to say I’m quite pleased with the way they turned out!  Is that ok?!? Tell me what you think! )
The first set are for the writing room (I know I say this all the time–as soon as it’s complete):
I began with these….
actually quite pretty as they are, don’t you think?
Wanna give this a try?  Here’s how I did it:
First, grab you some books of various sizes and widths-I haven’t tried with soft cover, but am assuming that hardcovers are easier.  I found mine at our little antique shop for $1 each–you can probably find some cheaper than that if you buy a set from a thrift shop or flea market.
Next, pick your paper palette–my paper was 12×12 scrapbook paper, so I did have to use two different papers on a couple of books–but I liked the interest it lended.  Cut your paper to size completely–I found it was easier to go ahead and “fit” your paper to the book so it was ready to be stretched as the mod podge went on.
Apply a thin layer of mod podge–this is all you need and after working with it plenty, you definitely don’t want too much–it can be quite a goopy (is that a word??) mess.
Starting with the front cover (because that’s what everyone will see, after all–much rather a mistake on the back), line up that paper and press all the bubbles out as you mp and apply your paper.  I wanted the book “slipcovers” to look as authentic as possible, so I made sure I got the mp in the crevice of the spine and using my finger nail, pressed the paper to form to the edging (see above).
Let those beauties dry!  Drab to Fab gave a great tip…..leave your books closed to dry because the paper will crack/bubble if not.  If you’ve ever mp’d before, you know that you have bubbling when you apply it on top of paper.  Because the size of my books and paper, I had to mix paper once–for that book, it was easier for me to prop it standing to make sure it dried bubble free.
Next, embellish them as your heart desires….
I wanted mine to feel vintage and coastal, so I embellished accordingly–a shell for one, a key and homemade bookmark tag for one, and the other, well, some things are better left alone.
Some details…
I made a bookmark using leftover scrapbooking tags and a vellum scripture, tying them together with ribbon (I wanted some twine, but none of that laying around).  I also glued (used Elmer’s) two cloth button embellishments–they were a little dark, so what did I do?  Made more work for myself, that’s what.  I quickly painted them with a pearl finish acrylic.
The back of the largest book–and the mixing of the paper.  I just cut the blue print and mp’d it first, layering the “spine” on top.
Same picture as before, just a little sepia….
Like I mentioned, some things are just better left alone.  I found one book, Old Glass and How To Collect It, and its original patina is gorgeous–would never dream of touching it!  So I decided to have fun shooting it instead…
Doesn’t that make you want to curl up with a good book??
In the beautiful chair…..yes, I’ll be including her in as many photos as possible. 🙂
Another finished set for the playroom….much more whimsical:
Love the buttons and the tag I added for the bottom one….”Grow in Grace.”
Hope you enjoyed!  Give these a shot-so easy and such a beautiful way to add color and symmetry to your room.  It’s perfect to do in a office/bookshelf with lots of books or really in any place you have a very specific color palette.  Happy transforming!
–shaunna 🙂
**Since posting this, I’ve gotten some emails and such great positive feedback on dressing up these old books….I’M GOING TO DO A GIVEAWAY!! It’s a small way for me to say THANK YOU to my readers and I’m SO excited to share something with each of you!
The giveaway will be for not 1, not 2, but 3 vintage books recovered/embellished to YOUR liking! You’ll get to pick your color palette and the style of embellishments you’d like (vintage, whimsical, traditional,etc.), if you want any at all. You can also decide how much “aging” I’ll add to the papers (sanding edges, inking,etc.).

-Leave a comment and tell me what colors you would like/what room you would put your beautiful books in
-Become a follower–this is FOR YOU….if you enjoy my blog, then go ahead! (if you’re a follower already, leave a comment telling me so)
-Look through previous posts and leave a comment telling me your fav and why
-Blog about our giveaway or post it on facebook
MAKE SURE TO LEAVE A SEPARATE COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY-THAT’S A POSSIBILITY OF FOUR ENTRIES FOR YOU! (If you don’t have a blog I where I could contact you, be sure to leave an email address in your comment!)

The giveaway will close next Thursday, March 10 at 10:00 am central. The lucky winner will be announced before the end of the day and I will contact you via email and ship those beauties right to your front door! Thanks for visiting me today! 🙂

**I’m linking this post to Remodelaholic,  and

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