Monday, August 30, 2010

Book Cover Art

We've all seen pages from books being utilized for all sorts of wonderful projects but what happens to the book covers after all of the pages have been removed?

If you need some inspiration on how to use the book covers head over to Amy @ Mittens .  Amy is hosting a book cover art party and there will be some great ideas on how to use the book covers in altered art projects.

I found this old book cover, as is, at an antique store for $1.00.  I loved the border on the cover and thought it would be a perfect mat for an old family photo.  The book cover measures 9.5" x 12.5".
While at the store I didn't take the time to turn the cover over.  So I was very pleased when I got home and saw this inscription on the one page that was left attached to the cover.
Wm. Henry Swain
The beautiful handwriting of William's grandmother was as clear today as I imagine it to be on the day she wrote the inscription to her grandson 137 years ago.

I knew right then that my book cover art wouldn't highlight the front of the book cover but would be focused on the inscription page to honor the grandmother that gave the book to her grandson in 1873.

With nothing more to go on then a name and a date I took some liberties with the items I chose to use on my book cover art piece.

I found a tin-type photo in my collection of old photos and thought this woman could represent a grandmother in the 1870's.

I also dug around my stash of supplies and found some vintage lace and old bottles to incorporate into the piece.

Now here's where I admit that the piece isn't finished.  I wanted to join Amy's party but did not have the time to put all the finishing touches on the project.  Here's a picture of the layout I have planned.
I like how the bottle necks frame the inscription and bring some depth to the piece.  But I want to slightly alter the bottles with some vintage paper, lace and buttons before I attach them to the book cover.  I may use the bottles as vases to hold small flowers or possibly solder and age the tops.

I 'm not adding a lot of frills to the piece because the woman in the picture does not look like the frilly type.  To me she represents a strong woman in a simpler time whose love for her grandson still resonates after 137 years.

Please link back to Amy's blog and enjoy all of the book cover art being shared.

I'm also linking this with Linda @ Coastal Charm for her Nifty Thrifty Tuesday  party.  This was a thrifty project to put together with a total cost of no more than $5.00.  Head over to Linda's to view 100's of other thrifty finds.



  1. JANE!!! You are the Queen of repurposing and making something AWESOME with bits and pieces! Love the past couple of post with all those great projects!
    Thanks so much for sharing your awesome ideas!
    deb :)

  2. Hi Jane!
    What a lovely treasure you found. The Grandmother's writing is so beautiful and your idea to use that photo and the old bottles is so sweet looking.

    Lovely project.


  3. I love the inscription in this book cover! Wonderful re-purposed art!

  4. Such beautiful handwriting and what you did with it is just out of this world neat!!!! Thanks for coming to my party with all your talent:)


  5. This is so neat! I love the beautiful handwriting...and can't wait to see the finished piece. I posted about a homemade, written invitation on my blog but mine is only 1939, It is said cursive writing is slowly disappearing from society.

  6. That is just perfect Jane! I just love the layout you have set up... I would want the highlight the grandmothers written message too. Oh my goodness, I just love everything about it... another very soulful piece. You just have talent oozing from your pours, I swear! Please share when you finish it...Theresa xoxo

  7. What an awesome find. I love that it is lovingly signed and dated. I think you honored it well with your art.

    Have a wonderful week Jane!

  8. Jane,
    I think this grandmother would be well-pleased with your idea and effort. I hope you'll show it again when you're finished. It's going to be wonderful!

  9. Jane,
    So nice to "meet" you, glad I found your blog through Amy's book cover challenge...all I can say is that if I found that book cover I would be ecstatic! It's really stunning, and along with everyone else, I think that handwriting is exquisite.....I'm loving your arrangement so far-good eye!

  10. Look at that calligraphy! Amazing!
    That is a dying art. Glad you captured it.

  11. Jane, I love where this is going and I hope you get to finish it soon to share with us.
    I just love how you are going to use the bottles,
    I mean just the layout is simple and gorgeous. I can't even imagine how good it would look all finished. PLEASE FINISH so I can drool over it. LOL
    Thanks for wanting so much to take part in this challenge! psst, you still have another day to complete it if that helps.

  12. Looks like the start of a wonderful project!! DO share when done, please!! Thanks for more inspiration!! Smiles, Julie

  13. I happened upon your blog by chance and love this post. You are putting thought, creativity and love into this project.

  14. I love this project, Jane! I have a couple of old book covers and would love to turn them into something special! Thanks for sharing!

  15. Beautiful Jane! I have some old books that I've gotten at auctions that have inscriptions in them. Thanks for sharing. Can't wait to see it all done.

    Have a wonderful day.

  16. That is going to be an awesome project when it is finished. Can't get over the fact that you didn't find the writing until you got home. Some find! Love it.

  17. Very nice! Love the look... so creative, so YOU!

  18. Brilliant as usual Jane, I think flowers would be very appropriate in the vintage bottles too!

  19. Such beautiful penmanship! What a great idea for a project and yours looks so wonderful! I hope you are having a wonderful week!!

  20. Oh, that is going to be beautiful!!

  21. You are on your way to creating a lovely art piece - wasn't the handwriting beautiful years ago - we are so sloppy now-a-days!!

  22. Love it!! I've got some of those and I appreciate the inspiration!

  23. Jane dearest, that hand writing is exquisite. Your art is lovely. Well done. blessings♥olive

  24. What a great book cover, Jane! I never would have thought you could buy one at an antique store, but I have seen them through scrapbooking places. How neat it still had the inscription page attached ~ what a beautiful handwriting "Grandmother" had!

  25. Incredible~ I Love this Jane.... Your Cover Art is Perfect, Love the photo & the bottles, can't wait to see it hanging on your wall!

  26. Another great project! I've used the spines of the books for book marks and have saved a lot of covers too. I'll have to check out the party.

  27. Jane,
    I'm so glad that your decided to use the writing vs the outside, while they are both beautiful, there is something about the lost art of the written word that deserves to take the main stage!
    dee dee

  28. Jane,
    I love what you are about to do with the old bottles, I am inspired.
    Thanks for sharing.

  29. I would love to find some old book covers, haven't found any here yet. A friend of mine converted one into a small scrapbook and it came out really nice....

  30. Jane, LOVE all your creative and wonderful ideas. Your last post about your Halloween mantle has me excited to see what you come up with!

  31. Jane,
    That was the sweetest post. Loved how the project will turn out.
    smiles, alice

  32. Wow...what a fabulous idea my friend. You really do come up with the most amazing things! I'm sooo incredibly inspired. Thank you so very much for sharing with us all here in blogland.


  33. Fantastic find with that book cover. I love what you did with the inscription. The handwriting back then was just exquisite...alas no more with all of the texting and emailing. ;-) I just did a workshop using old book covers. Hope to show it soon.

  34. I love what you did with the book cover and the inscription. That is such a wonderful idea.

  35. Hi Jane,
    I immediately fell in love with the cover of this book, but then when you showed the writing I loved it even more. Beautiful idea for altering it!

  36. Hi Jane!

    what a wonderful find! And I am so glad you are going to showcase the beautiful inscription! this project is going to turn out stunning!

  37. What a beautiful creation! I so wish we were taught how to write in beautiful script like that!!

  38. I bow at your feet ... queen of repurposing ...Deb nailed it

    your days must be so fullfilling

  39. That is amazing, Jane. As usual you found a great treasure and even made it better. I loved the book cover, (now I have something new to add to my thrifting list)but the inscription on the back is really the treasure. Love how you are showcasing it.

  40. Hi Jane, what a fabulous book cover. I absolutely love your layout. Multi-dimensional and highlights the inscription so beautifully. 137 years old -- wow! Just amazing.

    Your Key to My Heart frames are also gorgeous! You always inspire!

    Hope all is well with you and your family. Best wishes, Tammy


Thanks for stopping by. I really enjoy reading all of your comments!