Thursday, May 16, 2013

~thrifty thursday~{what to do with old books}

This project would make a great hostess gift for a book worm, or a great end of the year gift for a teacher paired with a Barnes and Noble gift card.
{it's what I'm giving!}

Today I will show you how you can make little notebooks our of old hardcover books. 
It's super easy and only a few supplies are needed:

paper cutter
hole punch
old hardcover books
printable library cards
and number labels
{look for the free downloads below}

 Start out with a variety of books in colors you like.
Plain covers are fine, but ones with fun graphics are even better.
I found vintage kids books to be really fun for this project.
I picked up my books at a local thrift shop for around 69 cents a piece.
 Believe it or not, I also found this cute paper at the same thrift store.
I also used a variety of other papers such as cream card stock and wide ruled paper, 
that I had at home.
 A heavy duty paper cutter comes in handy for this project, but you could use scissors.
 Gently rip the cover, binding and all, from the book pages.
Then trim the front and back and discard the binding, or save it for another project!
 Using your crop a file, punch 2 holes in the book cover and back.
Using those holes as a template, punch holes with a regular hole punch in your paper.
You can make your notebook as thick as you want. 
Obviously you will trim your paper to the size of the book, or a little smaller.
Then you put the whole thing together with 1" book rings.
Super simple! 
 I dressed up the inside cover with a envelope and vintage library card I printed out.
 I love having notepads everywhere because I am constantly jotting notes and ideas down.

 I made a couple with little golden books too.
 On some of the ones with plainer covers, I added these vintage looking tags with numbers on them.
 In one afternoon I made about 15.
 Feel free to print these images out on card stock for your own use.
The number labels are from here.
 I searched under vintage library cards on Pinterest and found this first one.
If you copy them to a word document, you can size them and print them out.

 This one is from here.
And, when you are all done, bundle up your naked books in twine for a
 little Restoration Hardware inspired decor!
 The labels look cute on these too!

I hope you liked this weeks project!


paperjunk-lc said...

Loved the way these turned out. Thanks for sharing.

the polished pebble: said...

What a great idea! They would be fun for scrapbooking too

xxx's kelley

Suzan said...

This is so stinking cute I can't stand it! Gonna pin it!!

Anna @ A Good Home said...

Wow, Melaine, this is wonderful! I've been looking for an idea for my daughter's teacher and this is it! Thanks for the inspiration :)

Anonymous said...


AntiqueChase said...

very cute! I love this idea. You can use the spine for another project like bookmarks.

Deborah said...

Great post, thank you, love the notebooks :)

Bee happy x

Katie @ sweet peas said...

Cute idea! The cute paper you found at the thrift store is also really easy to find, we use that in my first grade classroom for all of their writings. Check out teachers stores and places like that for it.

Brenda said...

Great project!

Kasia Ju said...

Great idea :) Thanks for the inspiration.

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Anonymous said...

Such a great idea. Think I'll save this one for next years teacher appreciation.

Mindy Whipple said...

Great idea for those vintage books missing pages but that I can't bear to get rid of.

Anonymous said...

Those turned out so adorable!!

You found the perfect book collection to use too


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Rachael Victoria said...

I adore this! Great idea, lovely pictures, brilliant post! Thank you so much for sharing!


Debra Oliver said...

Hi Melanie, I've wanted to try this. I'm a big list maker, and love old books, so this is a great way to combine the two. I've been a huge fan of yours for years, so I was tickled to see your link on Be Inspired!

Nancy said...

My grandson, on his own, did something similar the other day. He lost a leather wallet in the field by our house a while back and unfortunately our dog found it and made it into a chew toy. Anyway, he loves notebooks. Our grandson not the dog.:D And managed to salvage the long backside of the wallet. He punched holes and used key rings as in your example. He then cut paper, dipped them in coffee and dried them to make them look old and used them for the papers. It really looks awesome. He is very proud of it. And so am I. :) He also had $5.00 in it which he gave to his mom for Mothers Day. :)

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Kelley said...
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