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A New Use for Old Books: Handmade Cards

November 16, 2010

There are so many old books sitting on Goodwill shelves, and so many of them will never find a new home with a reader. But just because some editions don’t have a use on the bookshelves of today doesn’t mean there can’t be a purpose for them.

My favorite thing to do with old books is make one-of-a-kind greeting cards. If done right, sometimes a card can be just as special as an actual gift. Of the handmade cards I have given, most have been kept and treasured, hung on a wall, or put away to keep. With a handmade card, you can create something with the personality and likes of the recipient specifically in mind, and people really do appreciate this.

I have an assortment of books from Goodwill that are kept with my colored paper and scrapbook supplies: an old, yellowed dictionary; a 1970’s yearbook; and lots of illustrated children’s books. These books have come in handy to make everything from birthday or thank you cards to greetings for all the holidays. And with the season soon turning from fall into winter, there will be many uses for a thoughtful handmade card. Here is a look at a few of my favorites!

For this birthday card, I filled in a plain black and white picture with watercolor and paired it with dictionary clippings on the outside and in.

This image looked great paired with a special piece of paper from my scrapbook collection.

Pages filled with text make a striking envelope liner.

You can use images from books on more than just the outside of the card.

A set of thank you cards with images from a children's book and "thank you" typed in different languages.

For a little inspiration, bring your old books from Goodwill and some scrap paper, and join me and Crown Town Handmade for our upcoming Make Out, Thursday December 2 7:30pm, at the Patchwerk Playhaus in Plaza Midwood. Fellow crafter and Jane of all trades, Jessica Coate, will teach everyone how to make pop-up cards for the holidays.

-Amanda Aileen Fisher

Stop by our Contributors page for more about Amanda, or read her other posts here.



One Comment leave one →
  1. michelle permalink
    November 17, 2010 11:02 pm

    Right on! I love this idea. I just may have to give this a try this season. I’m sure my 5 year old will love the cutting and pasting as well.

    Great idea for reuse/recycle. Thumbs up!

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