How to Make Antique Book Bundles

From New to Old~ These faux antique book bundles are great décor pieces for home of wedding.

These DIY Fake Antique Book Bundles are easy to make and look great in a shabby chic décor or event. DISCLAIMER- Before you freak out about deconstructing books- some books WERE harmed in the creation of this blog post. In my defense they were discarded library books of little interest to most people and I have saved the covers for another project so all pieces were used and they resulting projects will breathe new life into old books. I purchase them at thrift stores and they are more suited for decorative items than reading material. One of these was even in Dutch- I can’t read a word!

Anyway, antique books bundles seem to be appearing on decorating television shows and in boutique stores and can be priced up to $40, which is crazy. Most of these are not actually antique books but books that have been well used and then deconstructed into a new creation. The actual cost of doing them yourself is next to nothing.

Old Books from New Ones- deconstructed hardcovers into interesting aged book bundles

Breath new romance into unloved hardcovers

These can be used as wedding décor also. They can be incorporated into table centerpieces, used as table numbers, used to decorate the guestbook signing and gift table and used to create interesting vignettes with antique ladders, teacups, luggage, keys, mason jars and typewriters. They have a worn vintage look and the colour scheme and nostalgic mood are perfect for the romantic and soft-hued Victorian weddings that are promising to be so popular for 2014 and 2015.

* 3-5 hardcover books (best to use some with some interesting wear and preferably already well used or damaged)
* strong tea or coffee
* Paintbrush
* Utility Knife
* Twine, Burlap, ribbon, leather strap or lace
* Embellishments (optional)


#1- Carefully cut the covers off the book by running the knife along the spine on the interior

Fake Aged Book DIY

Cut Book Cover off using a sharp utility blade.

#2- Smooth and clean up the spine as desired (there may be staples, stitching, glue, mesh, fabric, paper on the spine- it is all a bit of a surprise until you cut it open)

DIY antique book instructions

Different and interesting bindings hide under those hardcovers.

#3- For a pristine set of books- you can stop here and bundle them together with ribbon

#4- For an older primitive look- wet the paintbrush with the strong tea of coffee and wet pages, edges, spine and covers.

How to Tea Stain old books

Strong Tea or Coffee can be brushed right onto the front, back, and sides of pages.

I let this dry and then wrapped them with a medium width burlap ribbon and twine and this was the result.

Make yoru own Antique books from Hardcovers.

TA DA! This is the result of my first attempt at “antiquing” books.

Cheap Wedding Table Numbers DIY

Inexpensive and romantic table numbers for a wedding. Your guests will be pleased to take them home after the event!

NOT BAD- but I can do better! I decided I wanted to really mess these books up so I took them apart and actually dunked them in coffee and then dried them in the oven. I turned it on very low and stayed right there. After about 5 minutes I turned the oven off and let it cool down with the books inside.

Dry them in the over to spee up the process and allow for natural page curling.

Drying the books for Round #2 of the antiquing process.

I actually cooked the books! You can even see the baking rack marks. I think this looks very cool. Not unlike a pirate Captain’s logbook.

I Cooked the Books!

Aged Books fresh from the oven!

Ready for use as a Table Number or home decor piece.

Finished Product- these antiqued books were embellished with a skeleton key and a Table Number Tag.

I am very pleased with the finished Antique DIY Book Bundles. The cost is very minimal and you can find unloved books at thrift stores, library discard tables and even recycling boxes. With a bit of imagination and patience you can breathe a whole new life into these tired books. Products used for this project:

Antique Keys~

Wedding Antique Keys Decorations Favour Canada

Antique Keys Available from ~ As low as $6.62 for pack of 6 keys

Hang Tags~

White Favour Hang Tags available from for $5.25 for a pack of 50.

White Favour Hang Tags available from for $5.25 for a pack of 50.

Related Link:

DIY to stain white paper tags for an antiqued vintage look wedding

Tea Stain White Shipping Labels for a softer warmer look. Step by Step Instructions from the Blog. Happy Staining!

I hope these instructions help. I have been looking for simple instructions with photos to make DIY Book Bundles and had trouble finding them. I think the reason may be that there is little room for error with this simple project. They will all turn out differently and there is little or no expense involved.