Oh the hollowed out book. I made one years ago before this blog was ever a thought in my mind. I used it as a gift box of sorts to put a friend’s birthday present in. The book became part of the gift. She loved it!
I was trying to think of a fun way to store my e-reader. I think it’s a funny idea to store an electronic reading device inside a traditional book. This is how the hollowed out book got resurrected. Now mine is Hip Street brand reader that we got for a steal, but you can make this to suite your Kindle, Nook etc.
First, find a hardcover book. Thrift stores are a great spot for these unless you have one laying around that has seen better days or just isn’t loved any more. I wouldn’t normally recommend destroying books… so choose one that has been well loved / damaged pages… and avoid the classics! (Sorry if anyone likes this book!)
I picked this book from the 99 cent table at the thrift store. The book had a nice looking hard cover under the paper jacket and was about 3/4 inch larger then my e-reader around all sides, and just a little thicker.
Start by protecting the cover with either the existing sleeve or some plastic wrap. Protect the inside of the front cover as well.
Using Mod Podge (or watered down white glue) and a paint brush, coat the inside of the back cover. Close the book. Now brush the sides of the pages well with Mod Podge. *Note, I also left a few loose pages at the front of the book. Just my preference.
Once you have the page sides all coated, lay it flat and place something heavy on top so the pages don’t wrinkle from the moisture. Let it dry well.
Once it’s dry, check that all the pages are now stuck together like a big block. If there are loose pages or gaps, go over it again with another coat of MP and let it dry.
Now that it’s dry, open the book and lay your e-reader in the centre. Trace around it with a pencil.
You need a little finger hole to get the e-reader out of the book, so draw a smaller half circle where there is room.
Here is the fun part. Ok… maybe not ‘fun’… it does take some patience. You can either use a straight edge and a very sharp blade, or, a Dremmel tool. Since the cutout isn’t going to be overly deep, the sharp blade option isn’t so bad. Start cutting on the outside of your traced lines. Don’t think you have to do the entire depth in one shot. That would be too difficult. Just cut down a few layers at a time and peel out the pages as you go. Save the pages… they come in very handy for paper crafts! Make sure your blade is always sharp. Also, whatever page you stop on, read the content… so glad I did… the page I stopped on was a little R rated! I peeled out another page lol.
Once you have the cutout completed, test your e-reader in it to make sure the size is right. Make adjustments as needed. Next, you can take a bit of medium or light sand paper and smooth out any rough spots on the cut sides. Or, if you have a Dremmel, you could use the sanding bit to do this.
Finally, take some of that Mod Podge and coat the insides of the cutout. Try not to get it on the front page. Weight it down, but try to let it breath still or it will take eons to dry.
Pop in your e-reader and you’re done! What? You want to take this further? Here are a few suggestions how…
I took one of the pages that had been cut out and sent it through my printer to get this pretty bird graphic, then coloured it in by hand and podged it down into the opening.
You could also line the opening with a thin fabric or paint it with a pop of colour (do a clear coat so the paint doesn’t come off on your reader).
Add a tail of ribbon to look like a faux bookmark, or add a clasp to keep it closed.
Using a drill, drill up through the bottom side of the book to make an opening for your power cord. I might do a hole for headphones since the Hip Street also plays videos, music etc.
If the day ever comes and your done with your e-reader, you can use the book to stash valuables in an inconspicuous way!
See how I’ve used some of the cut out book pages for other projects, here and here.