This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Office Depot, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #inspirestudents http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV
Last week I shared how to make my new favorite accessory, a DIY pencil clutch. In that post, I outed myself as a huge school supply nerd, revealing how much time I spent as a kid preparing and decorating school supplies for the coming year. Today’s tutorial shares my go-to method for covering textbooks (or any book), ideas for custom cover designs, and how to reinforce the covers to survive a year in a bumpy backpack.
Author’s note: I have perfected this book covering technique for 20 years now, and at age 27, you better believe I can cut, fold and tape up one clean, mean, effective book jacket. I’ll warn you – this tutorial is really in depth. But as a librarian, I have a moral obligation to impart this important, obsessively-acquired school supply preparedness knowledge on the world! ;)
Sharpies, Paper Mate Flair Pens, & Mr. Sketch Scented markers
paper bags / thick paper
Folding the book jacket
Cut your paper (bag) to a rectangle a few inches larger than your open book.
With your book centered on the paper, make some preliminary folds along all sides of the book. Be careful not to let the book slide around the paper as you go.
Once the edges of your book are softly marked out, hold the pages of the book vertically with one hand. Using your other hand, as shown, reinforce your preliminary folds on the left and right sides of the book.
Fold the book closed with the book cover on to ensure it’s fitting your book properly. If it’s too tight, it’ll tear, and if it’s too loose, it’ll get all wrinkly and wear out faster. If the fit is good, crease the pieces of paper sticking past the top and bottom of the book.
Flip your book over so the spine is facing up. Cut two lines as wide as your book at each end of the spine, starting at the paper’s edge and stopping at the edge of the book.
Fold down the two flaps you just cut and put a piece of tape along each edge, right where the fold meets the cuts you made in the previous step. That will prevent tearing down the road.
Holding the book pages vertically once again, fold the paper into a little pocket around the front and back cover of the book and use a small piece of tape to secure.
Close your book. If the pocket of your book jacket is getting smashed into your book’s pages, simply trim a little triangle of paper from it for a clean-folding jacket.
Decorating the book jacket
I have this amazing vintage Home Economics textbook from the 30s, as a craft nerd does, so I decided that one needed some awesome cross stitch-themed art for a cover. Using my favorite pen in the world,* the Paper Mate Flair, I drew a series of X’s on a grid to form “home ec” on the cover and spine of this jacket.
*No joke – I use Paper Mate Flair pens exclusively in my knitting pattern journal. It’s a habit I picked up during my childhood Ghostwriter phase.
And for a chemistry textbook, this chemical symbol and molecular structure diagram-covered number was done with navy and light blue Sharpies (just make sure you’re not bleeding permanent ink on your school’s textbook when you’re drawing).
Speaking of markers used a lot in my childhood, I also used Mr. Sketch markers to cover an English book in sketches of books, and since they’re Mr. Sketch scented markers, the book smells like fruit now too! Books on books on fruits on books!
Reinforcing your Book Covers
Cover the spine first with a piece of packing tape.
Tear a piece of packing tape long enough to wrap all the way around the outside of your book. Stick it along one edge of your book, over the spine, and along the edge of the opposite cover.
Cut a triangle from each corner of your tape, as shown. Fold the short edge of the tape around the tall side of your book.
Trim away a rectangle of tape next to the spine of the book.
Fold the tape over the edge of the front and back cover of your book.
Trim away any excess tape as necessary, and you’ve got yourself some protected books for the year!
The only place I had to shop for this project’s supplies was Office Depot. They’ve got Mr. Sketch markers, every kind of Paper Mate pen, and a wall of Sharpies in more colors than you knew existed.
Right now at Office Depot, you can save $5 off your purchase of $20 or more on Select Newell Rubbermaid Brands (Paper Mate, Expo Neon Window Markers, Sharpie, Uni-Ball, & Mr. Sketch). From August 31 to September 6, you can get Sharpie Clearview Highlighter 3 packs for $4, Paper Mate Clearpoint 2 packs for $3, and Select Expo Chisel & Ultra Fine 4 packs for $2. While supplies last. For more savings, you can sign up for Office Depot Rewards here:http://bit.ly/1unqFEW.