Monday, December 5, 2011

How to Make a Christmas "House" shaped Book

I introduced this "House" shaped book project at my last conference.

Here is a Christmas version.

I have been playing around with books alot lately.  Trying to find ways to make them more interesting, ways to make the creation of a book more like an art project.

Here I utilize 2 front and back covers (one for the roof and one for the house).  The neat thing about this "house" book is that it can stand up on it's own, like a house for display.  Very cool!

Inside you can put in as many pages as you want, whatever type of paper you want.  It can be a story, Christmas poetry, photos, whatever you wish.

So let's get started:


- cardboard, I used corrugated for the roof, chipboard (cereal box) for the house
- book pages, scrapbooking paper, or colored paper
- glue
- scissors
- paint
- pencil crayons, gel pens, sharpies
- glitter glue
- white paper for pages
- jump rings, 15mm
- hole punch
- Mod podge for sealing, optional


Take your cardboard and cut 2 pieces 4" x 5" and 2 pieces 3.5" x 7".

These will be the front and back covers.

Paint one side of each piece.  Pick contrasting colors for your roof and house.

Let dry.

Take some colored paper, scrapbooking paper or whatever you have and cover the other side of the cardboard.

Place the roof piece on top of the house piece, line up the tops.  Make a little mark with a pencil where the bottom of the roof is on the house piece.  

This will help you put the windows, etc. in the right place.

Start making your door and windows.  I like to have a nice frame around mine.  So it looks like the door frame and the window sills.

I cut out either the window or door and then glue that shape onto the paper I want as the frame.  I then trim with the scissors.
For example here is my black door glued to the white paper I want for the door frame.  I did not show any white at the bottom.

I then glue it to my house.  Using a white gel pen I add a house # and a door knob.

For the windows I sketched out some details in pencil and added color with paint or pencil crayons.

Using a fine sharpie I outline a few details in my windows.

I then add some glitter glue that I brush on.

 As I've said before I always have the kids use a paintbrush to apply glitter otherwise they just put gobs and gobs on!

Do the same for the back cover.

For the roof I cut a few shingles out of colored paper and glued them on.

Because this is a winter scene I also cut out some icicles out of white paper.  You could also use white felt.

I then added some white paint and glitter for an icy snowy roof.

I used my gel pen to draw in some more shingle shapes.

Cut some pages for your book just slightly smaller than your house cover.
Punch 2 holes into your front roof.  I then take a pencil and mark the subsequent pages and punch holes in them as well.  I'm trying to get everything to line up together.
Take 2 jump rings.  These are 15 mm, the largest I could find.  I found these at Wal mart, 90 rings for about $3.00.
The rings are aluminum so they open quite easily.  I start with one hole and then put all the covers and pages on in order.  Close up the ring and then do the other side.

Finally you can add a title to your house if you wish.  You can also apply a sealer like Mod podge to your covers to make them more durable.
That's it.  Now that you know the basic construction for these "house" books I'm sure you can think of other ways to use them.

I'm sure there's someone in your family that would love one!

See you soon.


  1. So cool!

  2. I am going to try this with my kids - they will love it (as I do!!).

  3. 3 thousand visits a day and hardly any comments - that is gratitude! I am an Early Childhood Specialist - and English Literature Specialist, too. Newly retired after 30 years of teaching public education in Edmonton Alberta Canada loving every second of it. I taught K to 3 for about 7 or 8 years and remember making these kinds of books and having so much fun with the students writing and drawing in them. You are doing such important work.

  4. Always a highlight of my night to log onto your blog and see your creativity abound :) I love it!!!Many thanks for posting such detailed instructions and taking everyday objects and putting them to use.

  5. Great tutorial and really cute book! I love the use of the book pages for papers in this. Very nice.

  6. Hi, Just found your blog through TwoPeasinaBucket. Love this book and your other winter ideas. Thank you!

  7. Very interresting very creative hope I can do one just like it.Thank you Happy Hoildays.

  8. WOw I am loving your website... My GirlScout moms keep asking about taking a painting class at the local Art Studios the cheapest I can find is $25 a kid. Which is just way out of some of these families budgets.

    I keep looking for lessons on Youtube and come up empty. With your instructions I think I could pull off something pretty wonderful for them myself. Thank You Thank You for all the work that went into the extra instructions!