October 28, 2011

Upcycle a book into a decorative pumpkin!

I've been seeing books turned into creative decor items all over the internet recently so I decided to try my own. In the spirit of Halloween, a pumpkin seemed to be a good choice.

You should try it too! Here's how I did it...

First thing was finding a paperback book I didn't mind destroying. I am pretty particular about my books, so selecting one that was going to be ruined was a serious internal debate. I chose a book that came in a box of random books I bought at an auction that I had zero interest in reading.

Ripping the front and back pages off made my heart beat quickly. Ruining a book goes against everything I believe in.

I drew the shape of half a pumpkin on the front page.

Time to start cutting away the excess paper outside the pumpkin shape.

I started with scissors.

After the first few pages, the scissors became too awkward to use, so I switched to a knife with a fresh blade. The new blade was necessary since I tore a bunch of pages with the dull blade that was in it.

There were a LOT of teeny tiny paper pieces while I was cutting, it was a handy idea to keep the vacuum nearby!

Now... when you do yours, try and keep your edge straight. Unlike mine. I was so frustrated  by the time I got to the end that I trimmed up the pages as best I could and hoped nobody would notice. Thank heavens it turned out well.

I opened the used-to-be-a-book and bent the front and back around to meet each other and use hot glue to keep it together. I kept the glue close to the spine to make it more stable. It look some fussing and fidgeting to get the pages spaced the way I wanted, and I used some more glue to keep them where I wanted.

Then there was the whole issue of how to colour the pumpkin. I thought about watered down acrylic paint but then I worried about the pages sticking together. Then I thought about an orange ink pad, but I didn't find any I liked. So I used some orange spray paint. When I spray paint a project, I use the low part of the rock retaining wall in my backyard.

I let it dry inside while I went foraging for something to use as a stem

I ended up grabbing a twig the maple tree in my front yard left behind. I trimmed it to a reasonable pumpkin stem length and hot glued it in the middle of the hole made by the spine of the book

I rummaged through my ribbon basket and found a pretty green ribbon to tie around the stem for an extra punch of colour. Displayed next to a large decorative spider, it makes the bookcase at the top of my stairs look fun and festive!

Go ahead! Give it a try! Let me know how it works out for you!


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