Celebrate Creativity Day With Crafts from Our Creative Staff!

May 30 is National Creativity Day, the perfect time to work on a new project or craft! If you’re looking for some inspiration, don’t miss these amazing crafts from Harlequin staff members and keep reading for books with creative characters.

Book Storage Boxes

by Natasha Shaikh, Assistant Manager, eCommerce

What You’ll Need:

  • Hardcover book you want to upcycle
  • Craft wood (4 pieces)
  • Scrap book paper (choose a print you like)
  • Mod Podge
  • E6000 Industrial Adhesive
  • X-acto Knife
  • Saw (I used a coping saw)
  • Scissors
  • Brush
  • Clamps (or clothes pins)
  • Cutting Mat

Steps:

  1. Find a hardcover book you’d like to upcycle into a cute storage box. I tried to find something at my local thrift store with print on the cover, underneath the dust jacket. Make sure to remove the dust jacket before you get started.
  2. Carefully remove the cover of the book from the paper with your X-acto knife. Do not cut through the cover (front, back, and spine should all be one piece).

  3. Cut the scrapbook paper, with a design of your choice, to the size of the two inside covers of the book. It’s much quicker to mark the size on the back of the paper and use a paper cutter, but I used scissors and cut it very neatly to size.
  4. Use Mod Podge to decoupage the pretty paper on both sides of the book cover or use a simple glue stick. Rub over the glued paper to smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles.

  5. While the paper dries, use a saw to cut the craft wood to size. Make sure to account for how all the pieces will attach to each other. I cut the longer pieces to the length of the book but subtracting the width pieces of wood so that the ends of the longer pieces are covered. I was able to find craft wood the exact thickness I needed, but otherwise the wood will need to be cut to just the right size, which can be done better with a circular saw. You can also go to a hardware store to get this done for you!
  6. Use the E6000 to glue one of the longer wood pieces to the spine. Make sure it is centered by holding up the end width piece temporarily as you glue.

  7. Glue the rest of the pieces together. Make sure to not glue the tops of the wood pieces so you can still open the book cover.
  8. Let the book sit overnight to dry after ensuring the pieces are pushed into place.
  9. Your new storage box is ready! Some finishing touches you may want to try are painting the craft wood on the outside or adding sections inside the storage box with leftover craft wood.

Paper Stencils

by Katie Didow, Email and Content Marketing Coordinator

I think a good craft would be to create freezer paper stencils so you can essentially screen-print onto fabric. I think this would be a great way to customize a tote or shirt with one of your favourite bookish quotes.

What You’ll Need:

  • Item you wish to be screenprinted (i.e. bag or shirt)
  • Freezer Paper
  • Permanent Fabric Paint
  • Foam Paint Brush
  • Paper Plate
  • X-acto Knife
  • Cutting Mat
  • Scrap Cardboard

Steps:

  1. Create an image you’d like to print onto your fabric and trace it onto freezer paper, which you should be able to find at your local grocery store.
  2. Cut out the traced image from the freezer paper with an x-acto knife and cutting mat. Anything that’s cut out will be printed onto your fabric.
  3. Iron the freezer paper onto the fabric where you want your design to be with the shiny side down.
  4. Put some scrap cardboard behind the area where you’ll paint to ensure that it doesn’t bleed through or make a mess.
  5. Place some fabric paint onto a paper plate and use a foam brush to paint within your stencil. Make sure to not go past the freezer paper.
  6. Paint 2-3 coats, allowing at least 2 hours for the fabric to dry between each coat.
  7. Once you’ve finished, peel off the freezer paper from your fabric.
  8. Iron over the paint to set it (so it will last) then enjoy your new personalized piece!

Need more? Celebrate your creative side with these amazing reads!

New Ink on Life by Jennie Davids

New Ink on Life by Jennie DavidsLeaving a dependable job to apprentice as a tattoo artist was a drastic step after surviving breast cancer, but Cassie Whiteaker is nearly five years cancer-free. Nearly. She’s not ready to go out on her own until she clears that all-important hurdle. Also off-limits are relationships and sex. Struggling tattoo shop owner MJ Flores knows losing Thorn & Thistle would mean losing everything. Cross-stitching goody-goodies are not her type, but Cassie’s business background might just get the shop back on solid footing. As Cassie’s fears fade, she finds it harder to keep her admiration for her bad-girl boss from reawakening all she’d feared was lost.

Harlequin | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo | Apple Books | Goodreads

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The Lady from the Black Lagoon by Mallory O’Meara

The Lady from the Black Lagoon by Mallory O'MearaAs a teenager, Mallory O’Meara was thrilled to discover that one of her favorite movies, Creature from the Black Lagoon, featured a monster designed by a woman, Milicent Patrick. But for someone who should have been hailed as a pioneer in the genre, there was little information available. For, as O’Meara soon discovered, Patrick’s contribution had been claimed by a jealous male colleague, her career had been cut short and she soon after had disappeared from film history. No one even knew if she was still alive. A true-life detective story and a celebration of a forgotten feminist trailblazer, Mallory O’Meara’s The Lady from the Black Lagoon establishes Patrick in her rightful place in film history while calling out a Hollywood culture where little has changed since.

Harlequin | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo | Apple Books | Goodreads

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Captivated by the Millionaire by Nina Singh

Captivated by the Millionaire by Nina SinghOn paper it just shouldn’t work. Jess is a bohemian artist who loves her life in the close-knit Martha’s Vineyard community while Jordan is a millionaire bachelor, CEO and a “bright lights, big city” guy. There’s no denying the attraction between them, but neither are in the right place for a relationship. However, fate and an adorable little girl entrusted to their care have other ideas…

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