Book It!

When you receive a lot of cards- you must book it!

You thought I was done with wedding related posts- alas, here we are. It’s come time to make the ‘Thank You’ cards and while putting off actually starting the process I decided to look through the cards we received. Like a true procrastinator (or sufferer of ADD) I became distracted by the realization that I absolutely want to keep all of these cards but also store them in an attractive way, rather than throwing them all in a box that’s home is in the closet. Behold, I booked it:

I even lucked out when it came to materials for this project.  I found everything I needed while scavenging through my craft collection, even though I wasn’t sure what I would even need until I got to the next step (meaning I didn’t plan ahead on this one). I decided to make a binder-type book for the cards and planned on using cardboard for the cover. I was in luck when I found this box that a computer part was shipped in recently, it was perfect (See Tyler? I knew there was a point to keeping odd shaped boxes! (…and that would be the hoarder in me making excuses.)).

A tip: Long and short boxes like this (and cereal or cracker boxes) are perfect for making book or binder covers. Cereal and cracker boxes don’t open like this of course but they can easily be cut. It’s nice because the cardboard is already bent and shaped like a book. I also remember making binders and folders out of beer boxes during my student teaching days (don’t worry, the beer logos were covered). Basically- you can work with various types of boxes, this one was nice too because it’s a thicker cardboard than a cereal box, so it’s far sturdier.

I took my biggest card and my widest card to measure out the dimensions. After tracing and cutting accordingly I ended up with a nice book shape. I decided to leave the long ends there so the book could be tied shut and the end wouldn’t be left open.

Now is the point when you have to decide how you want to do the binding. I thought originally that I’d make it more like a two or three ring-binder. I had bought eight little rings at WallyWorld for like $2 for another project. In the end, I decided it’d be easier to just tie it, and twine was a “thing” at the wedding anyway, so I had a lot of that on hand. Also- if you have a lot of cards you’ll need a pretty big ring, which means that you’ll need a very thick binder.

If you chose to string the cards you’ll have to poke holes in your book cover and you need to prep a little first- don’t just go poking holes everywhere without thinking about it. I stacked my cards largest to littlest and centered them inside of the book cover- I needed to make sure that the holes would be centered and straight on both the book cover as well as the cards. I marked the top card with two dots for the holes, and then marked the cardboard based on my first marks on the card.

A note: I had a few cards that were smaller than the one that’s on top but it was getting to the point that if I made the holes any closer together it would look weird. You have several options when it comes to cards that are too small, or even cards that you cannot bare poking holes into. I glued my smallest cards to the inside and outside of the book cover. Another option that would work for the “too small” or “can’t bare to cut” cards would be to cut and paste a thin strip of cardstock (or cardboard, if you have some cereal box left over) to the back creased edge of the card, just make sure the strip is wide enough past the edge of the card to punch a hole into.

Another tip: Get a hole puncher. Get. A. Hole. Puncher. GETAHOLEPUNCHER. Single, double, triple- whatever. If it punches holes-get it. If you’re an avid crafter then of course you already have one and are laughing at me for claiming to be a crafter and then admitting to not owning a hole puncher (First of all- I do have a heart-shaped hole puncher. Secondly-some people call it a hole punch, I call it a puncher. I also pronounce ‘pillow’ like “pellow” and say “cara-mel” instead of ‘car-mel’… I digress.) I used this to ‘punch’ holes…Pretty sure this is a tool used for prying open nuts… I use it for pottery, not nut-prying, so that’s why I had it laying around. Can you imagine poking holes into fifty cards with this thing? It hurts if you stab yourself- it broke skin! Do you understand how important a hole puncher would be now? Go get one, for your finger’s sake.

For the cardboard a hole puncher isn’t really practical or even remotely possible for that matter. You could use a knitting needle or nail, you could start the hole with your scissor tips and finish with a pencil or pen, you could use a nut-pryer… you’ve got options. This cardboard was thick, but it was extremely easy to poke through.

Once you’ve got your holes in the cardboard it’s time for the tedious part of the project (hey- I never said this was a quick and easy DIY). Go through and mark each card so you know where to poke the holes. Keep in mind that there might be writing inside that you don’t want to punch through- if this is an issue then maybe this should be one of those cards that you attach cardstock to. Then go through and punch your holes homie! When you’re done a’punchin’ string or ring (whatever you choose to use) those bad boys up! It’ll just be easier in the future to have them all tied together in one spot while you’re working on your book cover.

A third tip: If you are stringing the cards together rather than using a ring, it may be helpful to wrap a tiny bit of tape around the end of the string/twine/ribbon/whatever. Sometimes materials fray, and if you are stringing several things it’ll only fray more and become more and more frustrating and annoying. Believe me, I know from experience. Wrapping the tape around the end will make it more like a shoelace, which has the plastic coating at the tip. It’s easier to guide through the hole and pull out, no fraying.

Okay- annoying part over! Fun part begins! Now you get to decorate your cover in anyway that you please. I was strongly considering making a book jacket out of kraft paper (which was another “thing” for the wedding and I have an abundance of). That was until I stumbled upon another random hoarded thing. This thin fabric  that came covered on my laptop screen. Most (normal) people would throw that away, I (abnormal) thought I might be able to use it for something so I put it with my craft stuff, and 6 weeks later, here we are. (See Tyler? I knew there was a point to keeping thin white computer screen dust covers!)

I didn’t go too crazy with the cover. Glued on the white fabric and some lace ribbon here and there. Strung the cards into the cover (that was a pain in the butt to string through that lace I just “had to put on there”) I attached buttons and twine to the flaps so the book could close like some journals or diaries do. Slapped my favorite home-made card to the front (We received several home-made cards by the way- and I must say that I was extremely impressed! Definitely something I take note of and appreciate!), and here we have it:

A wonderful keepsake to store all of those important cards while looking damn good doing it.

Book it! Book it good.


5 thoughts on “Book It!

  1. Love it. Thank you. I have piles of cards from THREE baby showers that I didnt want to throw out and didnt want to fill my scrapbook with. =)

  2. So awesome, you should really have your own show – like that Art Attack guy, but without that annoying English accent. I’d totally watch it.

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