How to Make a Beautiful Wreath From Old Books

When a friend moved recently, I helped her empty her home. Among the things she offered me was a set of books from 1900 that belonged to her husband’s grandmother.

I gilded the edges with spray paint.

I didn’t know what I would do with them, but they were too beautiful to pass up. We packed them in my car, where they sat for many months. (I live in a condo. Space is a premium!)

One day, while visiting Occoquan, I saw a wreath in a shop window. Of course I had to go inside and explore. Looking closer, I saw they made the wreath from the pages of a book. Aha! That’s what I’ll do with those yellowed, deckle-edged pages from those lovely old books.

I made my own revisions and came up with this paper wreath. This is such a quick craft that you could finish in an afternoon. It took me about two hours, not including paint drying time. Instructions are simple and you only need a few materials.

The most enjoyable part and perhaps the most important, is to choose a book you love, like I did, or one that speaks special to you – be it because of the color of the pages, an old Alice in Wonderland favorite or even sheet music. What a gift for the music lover!

A paper book wreath

The instructions are below to make this beautiful wreath!

What you’ll need:

Wire Wreath Form. These come in a variety of sizes.
  • a book
  • a wire wreath frame (I used size 14″)
  • pipe cleaners
  • silver or gold spray paint (optional)

I’m a big fan of using what you have, so I used white pipe cleaners. Any color will do.

If you want the edges of the book gilded, take the books outside and spray paint the edges with gold or silver spray paint. I put the books in a deep box and sprayed in the box to keep it from getting on my deck. Make sure you have good ventilation and don’t inhale the paint!

  1. Cut the pipe cleaners to about 3″ pieces.

2. Tear out the pages of the book. If your book is old, as mine is, it tears easily. This becomes part of the effect of the wreath.

Squeeze the paper toward the middle and add a pipe cleaner.

3. Lengthwise from the center of the paper, gently crumble or fold the paper towards the middle.

Tie the pipe cleaners to the back of the wreath.

4. Take a pipe cleaner and wrap it around the center, then turn the wreath over and tie it to the back of the wire wreath. I wrapped the pipe cleaners around two of the rungs for stability. I also staggered them top, middle and bottom rungs.

Continue to add paper until it is nice and full.

5. Continue doing this until the wreath is as full as you would like it. Turn it over to the front and look for holes where you could add more pages to fluff the wreath even more.

6. If you want more color, take the wreath outside and spray gold or silver or color of your choice on it. I did just the edges because I wanted the writing to show through.

7. Add gold balls or other adornments at this stage.

8. Add a hanging ribbon and you’re done!

This project took me about two hours, not including paint drying time.

If you make this, show me your pictures!

Angela DiCicco

The Italian Grandmama

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