Looking at this picture, can you tell which of these books are actually hardbound? I’m not super fussy over the books on my shelves, but I will admit that sometimes a really garish or unattractive book spine will jump out from the bunch and irritate me every time I walk by. I don’t think I would ever take the leap to cover all of my books, but I really like the idea of using these nifty deceptive hardbound dustcovers by Alex Cobbe to gussy up the real eyesores in my collection.
Alex used a few inexpensive materials — construction paper, a ruler, a gold pen — to quickly turn her collection of paperbacks into a library of classics — even the Chuck Norris book looks like a masterpiece :) This would be a fun rainy day activity, and the possibilities for customizing this look are endless. Thanks so much for sharing, Alex! — Kate
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- construction paper (enough to cover your books)
- pencil and eraser
- thin gold pen
- gold marker
- adhesive (Elmer’s or archival glue)
1. Lay your book flat on the construction paper — completely flat — ensuring the spine is flat as well, otherwise you won’t get a truly accurate width for your book. Align with the bottom of the construction paper; this way you don’t have to cut out the entire shape of the book.
2. On the construction paper, roughly mark the height of your book. Make sure to leave sufficient space on either side of the book to fold the side flaps.
3. With a ruler, draw a lovely straight line for the top and cut out. You will be left with a piece of paper the same height as your book, but wider on each side.
4. Fold the construction paper template around the book cover. What I do next is put pressure along the edges to make sure the folds are defined, and I use my fingernail to define the edge of the spine.
5. Using a ruler and your gold marker, draw a design down the spine of your cover. Here’s where your creativity comes in. I took inspiration from some of my favorite old books; alternatively, you can find images of old books. I also cut out a little label for added charm.
6. With your pencil, lightly mark where you will place the text. Once you’re happy with it, go over with the thin gold pen. Affix any labels if you choose, et voila, you’re finished!