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Children's Craft: How to Make Bookends

Updated on January 7, 2013
BlossomSB profile image

As a teacher at all levels and mother of five children, Bronwen has been interested in a variety of crafts for both children and adults.

The Finished Bookend
The Finished Bookend | Source

Children's Bookends

It is not difficult to make a pair of attractive bookends for a children's bedroom, and the best part is that even quite young children can have a hand in creating them. It's great for the children to enjoy helping to make their bedroom look good. They could even make a pair of bookends each for keeping their own books together.

The other good things are that they don't take very long to make and you probably have the materials somewhere around the home, so they are very economical to make. It's also a great way to preserve the front of a couple of favourite greeting cards, such as birthday or Christmas cards.

If you do not have any cards available, the boxes could be decorated with stickers, or instead of painting them the children could do finger-painting or marbling and the paper glued to the boxes. For girls, they could even be covered with the fabric of a favourite dress they have grown out of and then decorated with lace, beads or sparkles.

Put the Pebbles into the box
Put the Pebbles into the box | Source

Materials Needed

To make the bookends, you will need the following items, but some newspaper to protect the table or bench where the children are to work when painting could also be useful.

  • A pair of scissors to cut the greeting cards and the cardboard to size
  • 2 empty, but intact packets. The size of your completed bookends will depend on the size of the packets you choose to use. I used cornflour packets as they are about A5 size which is convenient as many cards are around that size, but they could be bigger than this or as small as a matchbox, depending on the size of the books you intend the bookends to hold.
  • A good number of pebbles. We had some in a tin we had brought home years ago from a visit to the famous Chesil Bank, in Dorset, England. They're probably protected now, but they were a special souvenir collected by our older children. At last they had a use!
  • 2 pieces of strong cardboard, the width of the boxes you have chosen
  • Clear glue
  • Acrylic or Poster paint in a bright colour that will look good with your cards. Make sure the colour chosen will match the decor of their bedroom
  • Wide sticky-tape

Paint the Box and the Cardboard
Paint the Box and the Cardboard | Source

Steps in Making the Bookends

Once you have assembled the materials needed, the children can begin. Most of the steps are quite simple and it is fun to share the making together.

  1. Fill the boxes with sufficient pebbles to support the books they will hold
  2. Glue the box tops and close. They may need to be held or weighted down for a moment
  3. Paint the boxes and one edge of the cardboard pieces
  4. While they are drying, cut out the cards and wash the brushes
  5. Glue one card on the outside of each box
  6. With the card facing outwards, glue the base of the box and stick it to the flat cardboard.
  7. With the weight of the pebbles, the boxes should be strong enough, but you can strengthen them by using the clear sticky-tape to further attach the box to the cardboard on the side of the box that does not have the card.
  8. The boxes can be further decorated with colourful stickers on the backs or narrow sides, if you wish.

Put the bookends in place and stand the books between them. They'll help to keep the books tidy, will be mementos of special occasions and will look great!

The Second Bookend at the Other End
The Second Bookend at the Other End | Source


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    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 2 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Velour: Bookmarking the bookends! A good idea and thank you for the comment.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 2 years ago from Dubai

      This is a great idea, have bookmarked for future reference.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Enjoy! I'd love to see the result.

    • profile image

      Deborah Sexton 4 years ago

      I have all my material and I am ready now to put them together. I would have never thought to do this on my own

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Deborah Sexton: I'm glad you like them. Hope you have fun making them.

    • profile image

      Deborah Sexton 4 years ago

      Very good ides and so pretty. I'll be making these

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      RTalloni: How lovely! Thank you.

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 5 years ago from the short journey

      This is a delightful craft for children with great creative potential, and that it helps them focus on reading gives it 10 extra points! :)

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      ChitrangadaSharan: Thank you. Children love being creative and even if the results are not so wonderful, it's good to encourage them. That's the way to improve.

      Lipnancy: Recycling has always been 'in', it's just that we talk about it more these days. Thank you for your comments.

    • Lipnancy profile image

      Nancy Yager 5 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      How very cute. I love the reuse of items.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 5 years ago from New Delhi, India

      This is so creative and useful. The pictures are great with well explained instructions. It is a good idea to involve the kids in making them.

      Thanks for this interesting hub.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      JohnMello: As well as using them, it's a great way to keep some of the best ones where you can also see them. Thank you for your vote.

    • JohnMello profile image

      JohnMello 5 years ago from England

      Great way to use up Christmas cards when the holiday's over! Voted up and useful :)

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Eiddwen: I hope they - and you - have fun making them. Thank you for your good wishes, Eddy. I've been away at a summer camp and just came back. Hope you have a lovely day today.

      LadyFiddler: Thank you for your lovely comments. May God bless you, too.

    • LadyFiddler profile image

      Joanna Chandler 5 years ago from On planet Earth

      Hey this was pretty simple and cool i LOVE the idea, very nice for kindergardeners to do for art and craft.

      Have a lovely afternoon

      God bless you sweedie

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      So clever and useful;lots to do when my grandchildren come to stay next.

      Have a wonderful day my friend.


    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      flashmakeit: Yes, it's creative and gives them quite a while to make and enjoy.

      aviannovice: Learning to make birdhouses would be fun and I'm sure the kids would have lots of fun doing that.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      These are fantastic. I'm sure that a lot of kids out there would love to do crafts like this. Our Lowes and Home Depot teach kids how to make birdhouses and other things on weekends.

    • flashmakeit profile image

      flashmakeit 5 years ago from usa

      That is a very useful craft idea for children.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 5 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      shiningirisheyes: Thank you. Having has a number of children probably helps.

      billybuc: The young ones do seem to take their time in providing grandchildren these days, don't they?

      Frank Atanacio: Thank you for your comment, good hub-friend.

      MsDora: Now there's a good creative idea!

      pstraubie48: How lovely! Thank you. I hope he has fun with you when he's old enough.

      mours sshields: Thank you, Marcia.

      peachpurple: I'm glad you like it and thank you for your vote.

      cuttler: Thank you for sharing it. Economical ways of doing things are often the most rewarding.

    • cuttler profile image

      Cuttler 5 years ago from HubPages

      Always a pleasure to share in your creativity. What a cheap and fun way to make bookends. Voted up as usual.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 5 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      i love your book ends. Well illustrated and easy to follow with the photos. Voted up

    • profile image

      mours sshields 5 years ago from Elwood, Indiana

      A very creative craft and many ideas one could use for this also.

      Marcia Ours

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 5 years ago from sunny Florida

      Cute idea....and so practical. My grandson is a little bit young to make these but when he is a bit older I will have him help me make them. Am book marking this for later use.

      Pinning....Sending Angels your way :) ps

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 5 years ago from The Caribbean

      With no kids in the house, I think I'll like to make a pair of these bookends for myself and "decorate" with an inspirational quote." Awesome! Thanks, Blossom.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 5 years ago from Shelton

      blossoms your arts and crafts are just so useful thank you :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I don't have any little kids in my life, but if I ever get any grandkids I'll remember this very useful hub. Good job Blossom!

    • shiningirisheyes profile image

      Shining Irish Eyes 5 years ago from Upstate, New York

      Blossom - another fantastic idea. You are a plethora of interesting ideas.