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Many years ago, I happened upon a hollowed book. I was in the back of a coffee shop scanning a shelf of used books that were a dollar, and for some reason I felt the urge to pluck a red one off the shelf. I cracked it open only to find the pages had been carved out and a message in a small plastic bag was tucked inside.
And so began my intrigue with hollowed books. Hiding in plain sight, your standard hardback book houses a little nest for treasures, rainy day cash, or in the case of the aforementioned red book, a geocache. I had to learn how to do it.
P No rare books were harmed in this craft. In fact, they were either found on a stoop or less than $3.
What you’ll need:
- Matte Mod Podge
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How to hollow your book:
Watch more videos on the same topic : How To Hollow Out A Book
Click SHOW MORE for more details on this project!nnOur blog is www.RunningWithSisters.com. It is loaded with DIY crafts, jewelry tutorials, and all kinds of gift crafts to make.nnLet’s connect!nTwitter: https://twitter.com/ONeilSistersnFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheONeilSistersnInstagram: https://www.instagram.com/oneilsisters/nPinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/oneilsisters/nnHow To Hollow Out A Book To Make A Hollow Book Boxnby Jennifer and Kitty O’NeilnRunning With SistersnnHave you ever seen a hollowed out book? It’s a great hiding place! Here’s how you can make your own hollow book box to stash your treasures.nnHollowing out the book might seem daunting, but it’s not that had. It just requires new, sharp X-Acto blades and patience. We can’t be responsible for any injuries so please please please be careful with your X-Acto knife!nnIf you have any questions about the Hollow Book Box, just leave us a comment below and we’ll reply. We’d love to help!nnHow To Hollow Out A Book To Make A Hollow Book BoxnnMaterials u0026 ToolsnHardback book, at least 1½” thicknMod Podge GlossnCraft paintbrushnCraft knife (like an X-Acto)nRulernPencilnnSteps n1. To carve the hole out of the inside of the book, you’ll want to start by painting all the pages with glue to hold them together. You don’t need to open every page and glue it. Just paint the outside edges of the book with Mod Podge. We think Mod Podge works great for this. And painting a coat on the outside edges of the hardback book will glue the pages together. nn2. Once the Mod Podge has dried on the outside edges, you can mark the inside of the book where you want to cut the niche. Use the ruler to create pencil guidelines for your niche.nn3. Next, use the craft knife and ruler to carefully cut through a few pages of the book. Rotate the book and cut through the next side of the niche – just a few pages. repeat until you can remove the first few pages of the book. Repeat making slow, careful cuts until you have removed all but the last 1/4
Photos by Mark Weinberg; video by Gabrielle Mangino
1. Pick your book.
You can really judge a book by its cover with this craft. Be sure to use a book with a reasonable number of thicker pages (say, 300 or so that aren’t tissue-thin). Keep your eyes peeled for the brightly bound Reader’s Digest Condensed Books or any other delightful tomes on the giveaway table at your library.
2. Prepare the book.
Flip about 1/8th of the way in your pretty yet soon-to-be unreadable book. Keeping a chunk of non-hollowed pages at the front helps the case that this is indeed a book and definitely n hiding or stashing anything at all. I like to binder clip the “normal section” so it stays out of the way.
3. Mark the hollowed section.
Use a ruler to mark the area you want to excavate. You’ll want to give yourself a healthy margin on all four sides. If your pages or margins are thin, there might be some ripping. If that happens (no big, it happened to me), just tuck them in in step six. It all comes out with the Mod Podge.
4. Start hollowing.
With a box cutter or X-ACTO knife, cut along the lines of your soon-to-be compartment. Depending on the sharpness of your knife and the pages of your book, you might be getting 10- to 20-page chunks at a time. The trickiest part here is cutting the corners with precision, but if you’re like me, you’ll find that a little unevenness only adds to the charm.
Keep in mind you can also carve the compartment to the shape of the object you’re stashing, if you’re feeling especially artistic.
5. Prep for the Mod Podge.
Once you’ve hollowed as much as you’d like, wrap a piece of wax paper around the front part of the book (the front section with the loose pages). Secure with a rubber band or binder clip. This ensures those pages stay free while you seal up the back section of the book.
6. Seal it up.
Using your paint brush, liberally paint the inside and outside hollowed pages with matte Mod Podge. Glob it on the sides of the secret compartment. For the exterior pages, hold the book loosely closed allowing the Mod Podge to get in the crevices of the pages. Then, close the book a smidgen tighter and wipe any excess away.
7. Apply weight and let dry overnight.
Stack something heavy on top. I used three coffee table books, and that worked like a charm. Let it dry overnight.
8. Remove wax paper.
In the morning, ever so carefully remove the wax paper, and there you have it—a book ready to stash. I was surprised at how solid one coat of Mod Podge zipped up the book. If you’re finding your pages are still a big loose, apply another coat and let it dry for another night.
What other day-of Halloween crafts are you tackling? Tell us in the comments.