Activity #305: Alter your board books

We had a board book that I didn’t like too much. The illustrations were too wishy washy and there were too many words. We also had a board book that I loved, by Todd Parr, called This is My Hair. Bold illustrations and simple text. Plus funny. I decided I wanted the first book to be more like the second book. And I needed a Father’s Day gift for my husband.

So, I painted over the cover of the book, put stickers on it to make a new title, and pasted all sorts of stuff on the inside.

The main theme was “This is my dad”. I made a cartoon-like image of my husband’s head and copied enough of them for each page of the book. Then I pasted it over various environments that I cut out of magazines. I hand-wrote the captions. I did not worry about letting the original contents of the book show through. It was obviously handmade.

I think it looks really messy and amateurish, but visitors to our house seemed to be very impressed. So, I share this idea with you so that you can impress your own visitors. Feel free to copy my ideas exactly.

How to make a custom book from a board book.

Apparently there is a whole art form called altered books, where people collage on the pages of regular books. They make some amazing stuff. My version is less than amazing, but it is a board book that my son and husband read together – and it’s made by me.


Since doing this project, I learned that you can also purchase blank board books. I also recommend using ModPodge as your paste. It dries clear and allows you to layer different cut-outs. (Affiliate links.)

The following two tabs change content below. co-founder Whitney lives with her husband, son, and daughter in the San Francisco Bay Area where she writes about parenting, crafts, and activities that moms can do with babies in tow. She and Heather also publish, a site for East Bay parents and are the authors of The Rookie Mom's Handbook and Stuff Every Mom Should Know.

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