Saturday, June 8, 2013

Altered Book Project {Revisited}

Pullman has the greatest little used bookstore, and today (well technically it was yesterday, since we are currently in the wee hours of Saturday morning) I discovered that the whole store is 20% off until June 15th! Definitely a fun surprise, and very profitable for my Thrifty Thursday project!

I was able to pick up six new books for altering for less than $10 (including sales tax). I know what you’re thinking – did I really need more books? I already shared photos of the one I wanted to alter for this project; and there have been a few posts about the absurd number of books I already own that I’ve never read….which reminds me, one of my goals for this year was to read 100 of the 118 books I own and have yet to read – and so far I’ve finished 1. Wow.

But that’s a rabbit trail for another trip. Today, tonight, this morning, whatever time it is for you when you read this, I want to show you my newest purchases:

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Here they are in a glorious pile, so colorful and full of potential! And each can serve a slightly different purpose. Let’s start with the smallest and work our way up.

board books 060713  First of all, I found three children’s board books on clearance, two for $1 each, and the Christmas one for only 50 cents! (By the way, has anyone else found it frustrating that the “cent” symbol is not available on regular keyboards?) Honest and Courage measure approximately 6” x 7” with a spine about 5/8” thick, and each has a dozen pages including the front and back covers. The Christmas book measures about 6.5” square with a spine of about 1/2” and thirteen pages total. I can overlook the fact that it’s an odd number of pages since it really gives me 26 different work areas.

There are several great things about using board books for altered book projects. They typically have very few pages, the binding is sturdy, and the pages themselves are about as thick as chipboard (maybe even a little thicker). They’d make great mini albums as well! And if you can find them used, the price is just right! You can also find them in different shapes and sizes, and sometimes they have flaps that open or pull out for even more interest.

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The fourth book is called Wakulla by Kirk Munroe. I’m not sure how it’s pronounced exactly, but I did discover it’s the name of a County in Florida. This story was originally published in 1885, and reprinted in 1913. This particular copy was given as a gift in 1943, with the inscription still on the front pages. It measures about 5.5” x 8.25” with a spine of about 1.25”, and has over 250 pages. I haven’t torn any of them out yet, but I’ll let you know how many I end up keeping.

I’m not sure you can tell with that photo being as small as it is, but the pages are sewn together, which as I mentioned last week is essential for a successful project. Another reason I chose it was for the green illustrations on the inside of both covers (the photo on the right). Overall an interesting book!

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The next book I found is called Camille by Alexandre Dumas Fils. It has a copyright of 1955 but looks and feels much older, and has that great old book smell (love it!). The cover has an interesting floral pattern printed on it (for some reason I didn’t get a photo of it earlier when I had the benefit of natural light), and the spine simply has the title and nothing else. It’s larger than any of the old books I’ve worked with in the past, measuring 8” x 11.25” x 1”. It has just over 230 pages, with large print, and a few black and white illustrations here and there (as in the photo on the left). I’m not sure which book will be given to the friend I mentioned in the first post, they both have interesting aspects and hold great potential. I guess I need to think of someone else to make one for, now that I have two!

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And finally, Classic Barns, a more modern book with large pages and beautifully colored illustrations. This one was published in 2001, and yet (as far as I can tell) is sewn together. The cover paper will be removed and incorporated somehow so the torn sticker doesn’t matter. It measures 9.75” x 13” with a 1/2” spine and just over 100 pages. I already have someone in mind for this one as well, and I’m really excited to get started in it!

Over the next several weeks I will be trying out new and interesting techniques, as well as showing you how you can achieve different things with different kinds of books and themes. I hope you too will be able to find an old book to re-create into something uniquely yours! And if you do, please share!

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