Use Old Book Pages In Crafts Without Destroying Books

Lately, I have been seeing more and more craft projects that use old book pages as part of the design.  I love the look of these crafts.  Since I love books, anything with book pages just warms my heart.  But, that raises a little bit of a problem for me.  It’s not that I don’t have plenty of old books that I could use the pages from in craft projects, it’s that I hate the idea of destroying any of my books.

How To Make Your Own Old Book Pages

I particularly like the look of aged book pages versus brand spanking new.  Unless I have a vintage book that is half way destroyed anyway, I will not want to tear any of the pages out.  However, I still want to use old book pages in some of my craft projects.  Luckily, I have found a way to get past this little problem and it is really very simple.

The first technique is the most simple.  The only requirements are that you already own a book with yellowed pages and you also have a copier that you can make colored copies on.

Here is an example of a copy that I took from a yellowed page of an old book:

old book pages

The copy is just a little bit lighter but it definitely has the aged look to it.  You can’t get any easier than that.  However, if you don’t have any old books or any books at all, you can still get some book pages and age them yourself.

How To Age Paper

how to age paper

I googled book page and then clicked on images and came up with several images of different book pages.  I printed off this one:

old book pages

It was actually already a little bit aged but I am going to show you how to age it some more.  Start by making yourself a hot cup of tea with a tea bag.

Put your paper into a rectangular shaped plastic container.  Once the tea is steeped, take out the tea bag and rub it all over the paper:

old book pages

Once you cover the entire paper, take it out of the plastic container and lay it out flat to dry.

old book pages

You can use a blow dryer to speed up the drying process but it will end up with a more crinkled texture.  I did it this way for this demonstration but normally like to dry it flat and wait patiently.  When it is dry it will have a nice yellowed and aged look.

old book pages

It’s now ready to use in your book page crafts.  Here is an example of a page that I used in a project after the paper dried flat:

halloween poem

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I'm addicted to crafting and decorating my downtown urban loft and up north rustic cabin. Read more about me.
  1. I love the idea you gave, because I love books and I don’t want to destroy them for projects. Thank you so much.

    1. You’re welcome Diane! It is a good alternative to actual book pages!

  2. Great idea to save books for book crafting! Just a thought tea and coffee have acid so maybe not a good idea for aging pages. Perhaps using Distressed ink pads to color may work and are acid free.


  3. I love it.! I too cannot bring myself to destroy ANY OF MY BOOKS! BUT I love crafting too. I have used the tea aging and it works great. So happy to hear their is another artist who does not like to destroy their books. I often wonder what will happen to my books when I am gone.i know my children do not have the same sense as I towards my books! Kudos for preserving!

    1. Thanks Loretta! It’s definitely great to have other options!

    2. I was at a thrift store today and bought a trashy romance novel for .25 just so I could try something like this. The pages have a lovely edge to them.

    3. how would you prevent the pages from warping?

  4. Love this. Had an old Poe book that was water damaged, but this is an excellent idea to recycle the pages.

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