Tutorial: Book Page Wreath

My own Walt Whitman wreath in my dining nook...

So if you want to make your own, here you go! Original idea, as I linked before, here. I’ve opted for a different look with more crisply folded pages rather than crumpled, but both looks are nice, and knock yourself out with whichever one tickles your fancy.

At the workshop a week or so back, it was interesting how differently the wreaths looked. I used an actual antique book, and my wreath is softer, smaller and has a genuine patina to it. A friend used music sheets, and it came out lovely. Another, a cookbook. The ladies who opted for new dollar-store books got bigger, crisper and brighter wreaths… it’s a lot of fun to play with it and see what happens. Remember, though- there are no mistakes in making art- just keep going, and it will be lovely!

To get started, pick your book. Any book you like the look of-  although natural paper pages makes it easier. I had one person in the class who used a large, glossy art book, and that was a pain- the paper is very thick… Do not be attached to this book, because you are going to utterly destroy its life as a book and reincarnate it in a whole new body.  So gather your supplies:

  • You need a wreath form- this one is 12″ and is hard, green foam, from the dollar store.
  • A book, ready to mangle, and an x-acto or other craft knife
  • a glue gun and glue sticks
  • Modge Podge and a brush

In the above photo, I have already torn some pages of the book into 1″- 2″ pieces and decopaged them to the wreath form. This doesn’t have to be perfect- it’s just so the form is hidden when you start making the wreath. It makes it substantially easier if you dampen the torn pages before trying to glue them to the round form.

With your craft knife, slice along the binding side of the book, carefully removing the pages. It doesn’t matter if it’s rough, as that side will be towards the wreath form, so don’t be a perfectionist. Just cut cut cut. Then you are going to roll each page into a cone, with the finished outside edge on the open end, and the cut edge forming the base or point of the cone. Tack each cone with a drop of glue, and make a big ol’ pile of cones.

Once you have a pile of cones (my old Walt Whitman book ended up having enough paper for three full wreaths) the Modge Podge is probably dry on the wreath form, and you can get busy gluing the little cones to your form.

Start at the back, and work forward, essentially making a giant chrysanthemum.

Again, don’t worry about the ends or about perfection- stagger the cones, and stand back to look at your progress every once in a while, and it will be perfectly fine! Keep gluing and gluing, and pretty soon, you’ll have a lovely wreath. That’s it! Knock yourself out and have fun!

This wreath is made with a modern, firm-paper book. The cones were also rolled narrower. See the difference between my floppy antique and this one? Have fun!