We’re guessing plenty of folks have repurposed old phone books into 3D paper Christmas trees, but we came across a new variation on this classic craft for fall: the book-page pumpkin. Adapted from Creations by Kara, this project is the perfect use for those novels collecting dust on your shelves—plus, you end up with unique decorations on the cheap. Just picture a couple of these cuties as Thanksgiving centerpieces. Not bad, eh?
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
» One sheet of card stock, cardboard, or other heavy-weight paper to make a stencil
» One slim paperback book you won’t miss
» Scissors (optional: X-acto knife)
» Hot glue gun
» Spray paint
» One twig or pipe cleaner
WHAT TO DO
1. Draw a pumpkin stencil on your card stock. To make sure the pumpkin is symmetrical, fold the card stock and draw half of the gourd on the folded edge. Cut out your pattern.
2. Cut off the covers of your paperback. Fold the pumpkin stencil in half over the binding.
3. Using a pencil, trace around the stencil onto the front and back pages of the book.
4. Following your traced line, cut through the entire book with a sharp X-acto knife or cut a few pages at a time with scissors. If you go with the latter technique, keep tracing the pumpkin on the next set of pages as you cut, since the original stenciled page will fall away after you cut through it.
5. To keep all of the pages together, place a thin strip of glue (hot glue works the fastest) on the binding edge.
6. Stand your pumpkin up on its bottom and fluff out the pages. If some pages refuse to fan, you can hot glue a few together to make the pumpkin sturdier and force the fanning action.
7. Give your pumpkin a splash of color by lightly spray painting the edges of the pages with the hue of your choice.
8. To add a stem, hot glue a small twig—or a pipe cleaner, as in the photo above—to the inside pages so that it stays in place and its glued end remains hidden. Voila! Happy fall!
Got another use for old paperbacks? Post a comment below and keep the conversation rolling. You might also be interested in HOMEGROWN 101s on hand-knit apple and pear ornaments, scarecrows, and Halloween mason jar lanterns, and you can always find more things to make, craft, plant, grow, cook, preserve, and spray paint in the HOMEGROWN 101 library.
PHOTO: TAYLOR LIBRARY, COURTESY OF CREATIVE COMMONS ON FLICKR