When it comes to altering books, the possibilities are endless. But it doesn't have to be a complicated process. With just a few simple materials, you can be on your way to creating an altered book in no time! All you really need to get started is a book, a glue stick, a ruler, and some clips. Use what you have on hand. Clothespins will substitute for the clips. A school ruler or a thick piece of cardboard cut to size will work perfectly for tearing pages. Most of us have books we no longer read taking up shelf space, and usually some kind of glue in a drawer or cupboard. Just grab what you have and let's get started!
The first step to altering a book is tearing out some pages throughout the book. Removing some of the pages makes room for the embellishments, photos, or ephemera that you might wish to add. It also keeps the the book from expanding too much on the fore edge, which reduces stress on the spine. I used a 1/4" steel rule to tear out my pages, but you can use a ruler or a piece of chipboard cut to the size you want. I like the tattered edges created by tearing, but if you prefer even edges you can use a craft knife instead of tearing the pages.
I divided my book into 5 sections and tore out 30 pages between each of them to create deep spacers for the bulky items I want to add to the book. Run a glue stick along all the edges of each section, and use the clips to hold them together while they dry. You can also use a tacky white glue or gel medium for this step.
For this background, I layered white gesso, acrylic paints, the same pencils, and another typed quote. The circles were made with Yellow Ochre gouache. I used the cap to stamp the circles on the pages. 3 rusty keys from my collection were the perfect finishing touch!
I hope you enjoyed this glimpse at some of the techniques I like to use for altered books. I'll be back on March 21st with 3 more background techniques, and the cover for this Lost & Found Journal. Until then, be sure to check out the great tips and techniques my fellow design team members have shared, and stay tuned for more inspiration as Altered Books Month continues!