These DIY sailboats are not made of wood, but upcycled books.
The best part of upcycling is that you can breathe new life into an object that might otherwise be destined for the trash. This is especially true with books. “Some lose relevance over time and are left neglected on the bottom shelf or packed away in a box that sits long forgotten in the attic,” writes author Clare Youngs. In her new book, Folded Book Art: 35 beautiful projects to transform your books—create cards, display scenes, decorations, gifts and more, she shares ways to revitalize old books and pages. “Books tell stories beyond the written page,” she writes. “The work of art I produce from those pages is extending the life of the book for other generations to enjoy.” If you find vintage children’s books at your next flea-market expedition, use this tutorial to turn them into miniature sailboats for your home.
What You’ll Need:
Templates (enlarged as desired for the small boat and 125% of that for the large boat) Masking tape
Hard book cover
Strong, quick-drying PVA glue
Pages from a book
Awl (or something else sharp)
What You’ll Do:
To make the smaller of the two boats, print out the templates and use them to cut out the two side pieces, the back section and the top section of the boat hull. Use a craft knife, and protect your work surface with a cutting mat.
Use a craft knife to shave a little off all the adjoining edges, at an angle. This will help the sections align neatly.
Take the top and one of the side sections. Spread glue along the side edge of the top. Curve the side section and stick it to the top, aligning the edges. You will need to hold the two sections together for a minute while the glue dries. Repeat with the other side.
Glue the back section of the hull and attach it to the sides. Hold it in position for a minute while the glue dries.
Trim the wooden skewer to measure 9 ½ inches (24 cm). From a book page, cut a rectangle measuring 8 ½ x 1 inches (22 x 2.5 cm). Spread glue over the wrong side of the paper, and wrap it tightly around the skewer, leaving ¾ inch (2 cm) of skewer uncovered at the sharp end.
Use the templates to cut out the sails from book pages. Glue the tabs and attach them to the mast, aligning the bottom edges of the sails 1 ¼ inches (3 cm) up from the sharp end of the skewer.
Cut a pennant shape, and stick this to the top of the mast by winding the first few millimeters of paper around the skewer.
Use an awl (or something else sharp) to make a small hole in the top of the hull, centered and 2 ¾ inches (7 cm) down from the front of the boat.
To finish, place the mast into the hole.
Repeat steps 1–9 to make the bigger boat, with a mast measuring 4 ¾ inches (26 cm) down from the front of the boat.
Folded Book Art: 35 beautiful projects to transform your books—create cards, display scenes, decorations, gifts and more by Clare Youngs, published by Cico Books, © 2017; rylandandpeters.com.