10 Ways to Reuse Old Books

Obviously collector books, quality library books and books we just plain love get pampered and kept on our shelves and tables. But what about the rest? Obsolete manuals, damaged books, those which have only kind-of survived the toddler years… where do they go, what do they become?Here are some great ideas I found for turning an old book into something new.

  • A book wall lamp (actually pretty cool for a study room, library or just a geek like me).
  • Join BookCrossing.
  • Gesso over the pages to create a journal or sketch book.
  • Remove pages and turn them into envelopes.
  • Frame individual pages or collages for inexpensive artwork.
  • Use as wallpaper (think bathroom wall, plenty of reading for guests!).
  • Decoupage a table top.
  • Stack several together (with cement glue in between) and clear coat to make an attractive centerpiece or a decorative column. Repaint spines and top if desired to resemble classics.
  • Wad up unusable pages for packing cushion.
  • Use for wrapping small gifts.

I’m sure there are hundreds of other ideas. Please share yours!

If books are in good shape and no longer needed in your household, please consider donating them to a hospital or shelter. A great idea for children is to have a book exchange party or a books-for-the-children’s-hospital party (ask everyone to bring their gently used books to donate).

If a book is not salvageable (or any parts of it that are beyond reuse), please recycle it.

Green Options Media is a network of environmentally-focused blogs providing users with the information needed to make sustainable choices. Written by experienced professionals, Green Options Media’s blogs engage visitors with authoritative content, compelling discussions, and actionable advice. We invite anyone with questions, or simply curiosity, to add their voices to the community, and share their approaches to achieving abundance.

By Jamie Ervin, Green Options

150 comments

Olivia H
Olivia H21 days ago

Thank you for sharing

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Olivia H
Olivia H21 days ago

Thank you for sharing

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Sophie A
Past Member 3 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyerabout a year ago

Seems like physical paper books are going out of style.

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Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyerabout a year ago

I reccently got rid of several dozen old books that were collecting dust and ????

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Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyerabout a year ago

Some of the links didn't work

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Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyerabout a year ago

thanks

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W. C
W. Cabout a year ago

Thanks.

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William C
William Cabout a year ago

Thank you.

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Sonia Minwer-Barakat Requ
Sonia M6 years ago

I can't cut a book.But maybe I'll try some of this tips with junk mail or old newspaper

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