Fashion is everywhere

Chez Larsson

Folded Book

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Here’s an easy, fairly quick and good looking craft that you can do if you’re like me and want to do something with your hands while you’re watching TV.

I used a thin paper back book which I got from the local charity shop but you can use a small magazine too like Jennifer does. She’s kind enough to share the instructions while I was just folding away selfishly.

You can also find a ton of folding book ideas on Pinterest, some more advanced than others.

I know from prior experience her on the blog that there are book lovers out there that probably think this is sacrelige but I think it's a neat craft so please spare me the comments that books belong in a book case, should never be recycled or tampered with in any way even if they're never read. Thanks.


  • Suzanne says:

    1) I KNEW I didn’t recycle those little catalogs for a reason, this past weekend!
    2) WHY didn’t I buy the bone folder I saw just today on clearance at the hobby store? (And why did I notice it in the first place?)
    So funny how these things happen. And will definitely be doing this soon. (After I go back and get the new bone folder…)

  • Haha 🙂
    I actually did the book without my bone folder so it’s not totally necessary.

  • Qouda says:

    But what’s it for? I mean what do you do once you have whatever all folded up?

  • It’s an ornament. Not ALL things need to be useful 🙂

  • Anne says:

    Utterly cool. I could think of a lot of novels that would be better off that way than in a book case.

  • Nicola says:

    Thanks for the links, Benita. My son loves origami – but not reading! – so he will love this 😉

  • Är väldigt sugen på att sätta igång att vika jag med! Blir det snyggast med en tjock bok tro? Är på jakt efter fler instruktioner för hur man kan vika liknande saker, alltså inte vika tranor, hundar eller blommor utan mer abstrakta saker.
    Jag ser inget kontroversiellt alls med att använda en bok till detta, det finns ju en hel del böcker som gör sig bättre som ornament än som läsning…

  • Det finns säkert några tutorials bland Pinterestbilderna men du som är så himlarns pysslig knåpar nog raskt ihop nån fantastikt vikt kreation på känsla:) Vad gäller tjockleken så var min bok perfekt till denna liggade skapelse men om man vill kunna vika boken 360 grader för att göra t ex såna här så behöver man nog en lite tjockare. Min var som en tunn pocket på ca 1 cm men med de där lite gammaldags tjockare arken.

  • Zosia says:

    I was going to ask the same question as Quoda, but then I looked at Jennifer’s link with instructions and figured it was some kind of decoration. Perhaps you could show a photo of how it looks like on your shelf or where ever you put it?
    As for books, if you did this to some rare first edition, I would be cross with you, but these days, there are plenty of printed materials, like magazines or paper backs printed in millions, that end up in recycling anyway, that I don’t see any reason why they cannot be repurposed for something else. For starters, I would repurpose all Harlequin novels into SOMETHING USEFUL, BEFORE they even end up in bookstores or in anyone’s hands :-).

  • Julia says:

    Next post: how you hang it on the wall! There are very neat examples out there, although I confess I’m not sure how they deal with the different kinds of binding (because it all falls on the binding, doesn’t it?).
    I’m a librarian and the first time I saw an “intervened book” at a public library (of all places!) I gasped in horror. But truth be told, I’m also quite fed up with the adoration (almost fetish) of the object book regardless of its contents, and this is a good new life for books that are not being read (or there are so many copies that who cares about just another one!)
    I’m not being very clear in my thoughts, but I want to make it clear that I love reading, I love books, I love libraries, and I love folded books too.

  • Sandy P. (USA) says:

    They are so cool and different! I love those that hang. Definitely would be a conversation piece.

  • devil says:

    My belief that people should be allowed to do what they want with their own stuff outweighs my feelings that books are sacred. Not all books are that great anyway. In college, I got stuck reading plenty of books that should have been folded instead of read by human eyes. 😉
    I adore paper crafts of all kinds so I’d love to see another photo of this folded book on display. 🙂

  • Lisa says:

    Very cool! I love text for reading and incorporated into art! There are many altered book crafts out there, and this is another one for me to try!

  • ~Michelle says:

    I am a librarian and I think – I KNOW – it is perfectly ok to use an old book or even a brand new one for crafts.
    One of the hardest lessons to learn as a librarian is the importance of weeding. There are some books (example: computer manuals from 1995, old science textbooks, really atrocious pulp novels) that just need to go to recycling. And this is repurposing.
    Therefore — TA-DA! *taps you with Librarian Wand* — I deem this totally allowable!

  • Lisa says:

    Haha! Just went over to view Jennifer’s instructions: if you can handle her folding up a Martha mag, then all other folded reading materials should be free game!!

  • Erin Kleider says:

    Never, never, never! I had an ENGLISH LIT teacher who encouraged us to look at books differently and not regard them as precious. She taught classes on interacting with books and altering them way before it was a thing people did. I LOVE YOUR project. I saw one where someone made a sort of filing system out of a book. Too cool!

  • Paula says:

    Benita, have you seen this : – maybe not something you could do in front of the telly, though.

  • Heather P. says:

    Cool idea! I’m not a big fan of re-reading books, so this could be something cool to do with some of my old paperbacks I have lying around!
    Oh, and I’m an English teacher…and I fully endorse destroying books. I think treating them like they’re precious jewels takes away a lot of the fun. I like to write in my books, earmark pages, and use old book pages as wrapping paper. They are just paper, after all – the words live on long after they’re torn up, worn out, or thrown away. 🙂

  • That would require a bit more concentration 🙂

  • MareePSasja says:

    No, sorry Benita – just can’t see the point in this one!
    But I’m glad you get enjoyment out of creating it 🙂

  • ~Michelle says:

    Hm I really didn’t want that giant Martha Stewart Gardening coffee table book any more…..

  • Maria G. says:

    Indeed, not all ornaments need to be useful but this craft is still useful. One, it keeps you from being bored as it gives you something to do. Two, my kids would also love this because they love paper crafts. And three, I think they would make a good ornament to decorate your shelf with instead of being plain books on a shelf.

  • Amy says:

    What fun! I’ve seen some amazing window displays at Anthropologie that use this technique. Sorry can’t find pictures. . .

  • Marianne says:

    I think these folded books are a work of art. I have Lisa Occhipinti’s book on my wish list. I hadn’t thought about searching on Pinterest for photo’s and maybe tutorials. Thank for the links. I also added AMM to my reading list.
    Have a nice weekend!

  • april says:

    I, too, am a librarian and was going to mention the same thing! In fact, for Christmas, I took law books that I had weeded for recycling and did a paper folding project to turn them into Christmas trees. It was fun and students and faculty loved them. 🙂