As a chronic thrifter and avid reader, I’ve accumulated quite the collection of books over the years. The problem is, my bookshelf is a lot bigger than my free time, and so a lot of my books have been sitting there for 10+ years with no sign of being read any time soon.
Pinterest has plenty of ideas for old books, but this one in particular got my attention: the book birdhouse. This bird house made out of books is an adorable way to recycle and repurpose your old books and add spring flair to your home decor. The craft that I’m showing you today can be done two ways: One using the covers and bindings of the books, with the other using the actual book pages.
DIY #1: Book Birdhouse With Book Covers
3 Hardcover books (2 the same size as each other, 1 slightly smaller)
Hot Glue Gun
Circle Cutting Tool Like Cricut or Drill Attachment
1. Start by collecting your three books. Your books should:
- Be three colors that go nicely with one another
- The books that are the front and sides should be the same height and width
- The “roof book” should be about 3/4 height of “wall books” and about the same width of those books.
- The “roof book” should have a small spine (the smaller the better)
2. For your front & back books, cut the covers off away from the spine so that you have just the covers.
3. For your roof book, cut out the pages on the inside but leave the exterior of the book completely intact.
4. Choose which book you’ll be using for the front and back if you haven’t already. For the one that’s going to be on the front, measure about 1/3 of the way down an draw a circle in the middle. My front was 5 inches wide, and so I made my circle 1.75 inches in diameter and had it about 2.5 inches from the top. This is where I used my Cricut, but you could use an alternative tool if you have one.
5. Once you have the circle cut out, flip over the book so that the nice side is facing away from you. Put a dot at the top center of the book. Then, use a ruler to draw a line from that dot down to the left side, to about the halfway point of the circle. Repeat with the right side to make a v shape at the top of the house. Use your scissors to cut along those two lines so that the front of the birdhouse now has a pointed top.
6. Trace the front of the house onto the book cover you’re using for the back of the house, so the angles are the same. Cut it out just like you cut the front.
7. Now for the sides of the house. Go ahead and flip the cover over again so the nice side is down. Line up the front of the birdhouse next to it. See where the angle starts on your front? That’s where you want to mark your side book. Cut a straight line across the side book so that its height is equivalent to the height of the front from the bottom up to where the V starts. Cut the second side wall to the same size as the one you just did.
8. Use your hot glue gun to attach the side walls to the front wall. Then, attach the back wall to the two sides.
9. Finally, put your “roof book” onto the top of the birdhouse. Make sure it rests right in the middle; the top of the v should be right in the center of the book’s spine.
Finally, your book birdhouse is done! I’m really happy with how mine turned out since it was the first one I ever did, but if I were to do anything differently, I would choose book covers that have more texture or designs to them. It’s obvious the roof is a book, but it’s not so obvious with the walls on mine. Even so, it’s a super fun and cost-effective project.
On Monday, I’ll be back to share Book Birdhouse #2, which recycles the book pages to make a stunning birdhouse.