Every so often I Google “book crafts” because, as a bibliophile, I love all things book related. But then I stumbled upon the comments on a particular site and was surprised to see how many of them were negative. So here and now I would like to share why I am very much in favor of book related crafts.
Now I am not saying you should tear apart first editions or perfectly legible novels in the name of art. But, as a librarian, I’ve seen plenty of books that, due to damage (tears, stains, weathering, spills, etc.), are just not readable anymore. So why not tear out the good pages to use in Christmas ornaments or jewelry?
(And before you get on me about recycling just know that, due to the glue in the binding, you usually can’t just toss books into your recycling bins with other paper products. So if donating isn’t an option then upcycling, where you turn useless products into useable materials, is definitely the better option).
Plus, if you look closer at a lot of the craft instructions or Etsy sellers you’ll see that some suggest using photocopies of book pages, or if covers are the main supply needed, they offer to show you how to re-bind the book or they’ll even do it for you. So if the book was readable before the craft it still will be.
So if you see a book craft but are worried about harming books just realize two things:
One: a book may be in such a rough condition that being upcycled or tossed are the only options left for it.
Two: a real book may not have to be harmed at all or it could be fixed afterwards.