Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Make Back To School Fun - Idea #3

Create the Coolest Bookcover Ever

Transform an ordinary school binder into an extraordinary one!

Get your child their own designer book cover for school, by choosing this tie-dye fabric book cover or pick out a patterned cloth of your kid's choice to suit their own individual tastes.

What you'll need:
  • Large brown paper grocery bag or brown craft paper
  • Fabric scraps
  • White craft glue
  • Small bowl
  • Water
  • Paintbrush
  • Wax paper
  • Scissors
  • Textbook

How to make it:

  1. First you will need to make the shell of the book cover. Afterward, you will remove the book cover and decoupage it. Begin by cutting the brown paper bag open: Using scissors, cut from the top of the bag to the bottom at one of the corner creases.
  2. Cut the bottom off the bag completely. You should have a long rectangle when finished.
  3. Lay your text book in the center of the rectangle.
  4. Fold the top and bottom of the rectangle up so that the height of the rectangle is equal to the height of the text book. Crease the folds by pressing with your fingers.
  5. Bring the left side of the paper cover over the book and line up the ends with the right side of the paper cover.
  6. Open the book and fold the left side of the paper around the cover of the book.
  7. Repeat this on the other side of the book as well.
  8. Open the cover of the book. You need to trim the paper to about half the width of the actual book’s cover. Use a pencil to mark the paper inside the cover where you will trim it.
  9. Repeat this on the other side of the book as well. Remove the cover from the book and trim off the excess paper with scissors.
  10. Carefully slide the front and back cover of the text book into the temporary paper cover to make sure it fits. Adjust the height accordingly if the cover feels too snug or too loose. When you are happy, remove the cover and set the textbook aside.
  11. Line work surface with wax paper.
  12. Mix together 2/3 glue and 1/3 water in a bowl with your paintbrush. Use a soup or cereal sized bowl filled about halfway. Make more if you run low.
  13. Cut fabric into pieces, any size is fine. Approximately 2” x 2” is a nice workable size.
  14. Open paper book cover and place the "good" side face up onto the wax paper.
  15. Begin by painting a 2” section in a top corner of the paper with the glue mixture. Place a piece of fabric on to the glue mixture. Add more glue mixture to your paintbrush and paint over the top of the fabric scrap, smoothing with your paintbrush as you go. Scrap should be saturated and plat but not dripping. Repeat this process, covering the paper completely, overlapping fabric pieces as you go.
  16. When paper is covered with fabric, open the book cover up and carefully place the textbook back inside it as you did before you applied the fabric.
  17. Carefully close the book; place a piece of wax paper in between the front cover and the front page and the back cover and the back page. This will keep the wet decoupage cover from sticking to the actual textbook as it dries.
  18. Allow to dry overnight then remove the wax paper from the book.


  • Recycle old fabric by saving the scraps in a zipper plastic bag or plastic container to use for a future project.
  • Personalize this project by cutting letters out of a contrasting fabric color and decoupage child’s name on front of cover.
  • If any of the fabric scraps are sticking up after drying, use white glue to stick them down.

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