Books by Brittney
s a bibliophile myself, I was pleased to find Brittney’s book art. She is able to transform a neglected book into a beautiful keepsake.
I asked Brittney, the creator/owner of Books by Brittney, if she could share the story behind her book folding art. She took the time to answer a few of my questions. Enjoy!
Tell us a bit about you and your shop.
I am an avid reader and have always loved books. I even used books as the centerpieces for my wedding reception. At the time I was planning my wedding (nearly four years ago), I saw my first folded book. I was intrigued, but could not figure out how to make one! Three years later, I did some research and was able to complete my first book! The concept is fairly simple, but I’ve learned lessons along the way on how to improve the books and how to produce them faster and now it’s almost a therapeutic hobby for me. My Etsy shop is Books By Brittney and right now I almost exclusively sell folded books. In the near future I will be expanding my offerings to other book page crafts.
What inspires you to create?
Relationships, events, and love. 🙂 I started making folded books to give to my friends who were getting married. I would fold their new last name into a book or their wedding date. With each fold (and there are HUNDREDS of individual folds in each book), I would fold my love and well wishes into the book. Even now that I do those projects for profit, I am inspired by the care that goes into such a thoughtful gift. People ask for all kinds of words and pictures to be folded into books. Whatever they choose, I know that the book will likely be treasured and placed in a location of high visibility and esteem. The fact that someone would look at a piece I folded for them and be reminded of how someone else loves them (think anniversary gifts for customers) or how I love them (think gifts for my best friends), makes me want to take extra care when creating these custom keepsakes.
What are your favorite materials?
I love Readers Digest Condensed books with vintage covers. The newer ones have plain covers, but ones from the 50s and 60s have gorgeous patterns on them. Readers Digest books are great to use not only because of their size and the number of pages in them, but also because I honestly don’t know many (ok, any) people who read them! I mean, why read a condensed version when you could read the whole thing? There have been an abundance of them and even libraries won’t take them as donations. They are perfect in so many ways, and pretty, too!
What’s your favorite item in your shop? And why?
Funny you should ask. There are some books that take me, literally, hours and hours to make. Most people would expect me to say a custom name or date book or the Harry Potter logo, but honestly, my favorite book is the simplest book I make. I love the plain ol’ heart book best. It looks good from every angle and it’s one of only two folded books I have on display in my house. I’m not alone, apparently, because the plain heart remains my best selling Etsy listing.
I mentioned before, I am an avid reader. Because of this, it took me a long time to become comfortable with the idea of “ruining” a perfectly good book. I want you to know that first and foremost, I’m still a lover of books. Just because I use them as supplies, does not mean that I don’t value them immensely. An important part of my artistry is the fact that I don’t cut or tear out any pages in the books. If you wanted to unfold a book and read it, you would be able to do so (though I don’t suggest it). I like to think that I am not taking a book out of commission by folding it, but that I am giving it a place of honor in someone’s life. Hopefully, the books I fold will be around for years to come, brining joy to people’s lives and not sitting on an abandoned shelf in Goodwill. It’s for this reason that my business’ tag line is, “Resurrecting Literature One Page at a Time.” Thank you for reading about these special books. If at any time you would be interested in owning one, please feel free to contact me through my Etsy shop. I’ll be happy to whip up a custom order for you!