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Living: How to Cover Your Textbook

School textbooks can be quite expensive. Fortunately, a good cover can keep your books in good shape throughout the semester, even used textbooks. You can make some of that money back by reselling [https://booksrun.com] them after your final exam. Used textbooks in good condition can be resold no matter how many people have used them.

Here’s a quick tutorial for a sturdy, attractive book cover.


All you need is:

Paper

Tape

Scissors

Pen or marker

You can use any kind of paper, as long as it’s bigger than your open textbook. Large sheets of paper and rolls of craft paper are available at most office supply stores and teacher stores. You can also save money by getting a paper bag from a grocery store and cutting it open. Simply place the logo against your book, and use the clear inside of the bag for the visible outside of your textbook cover.

You also have many options for tape. The most common choice is basic, transparent gift wrapping tape for constructing the cover, and a wider, sturdier tape such as packing tape or duct tape to strengthen the spine and corners. Decorative tape, such as washi tape, is another gorgeous option. Any kind works, but narrower tape is easier to use to build your cover, and wider tape is better for adding extra durability to the spine and corners.

You may also wish to gather items for decorating your textbook. Pens, pencils, or markers to write and color are a great choice, but first test each writing utensil on the paper to make sure it doesn’t bleed through. Other options include photos and comics to tape to the cover.

Now that you have gathered all your materials, let’s cover your textbook!

1. Size the paper

Lay your paper flat on your working surface, with the side you want visible facing down. Now open your textbook approximately to the middle, and lay it in the center of the paper. The paper should be approximately two inches larger all around. If it’s more than three inches larger, trim it. If it’s any less than one inch, you’re going to need a larger piece of paper.

2. Cut wedge at the spine

Once your paper is the right size, recenter the book in the middle of the paper. Then cut a wedge from the paper’s edge to the spine. The edge of the paper should have a wider opening than the spine. Tuck this small piece between the paper and the book, and repeat this step for the top of the spine.

3. Fold along the side of the front cover

Take the paper that extends along the left side of the front cover and fold it over the book’s cover. Instead of molding the fold directly to the edge of the book, put the crease about a fingers width past the edge. That way you’ll have the wiggle room to open and close the book even when both sides are covered.

4. Fold the top down and bottom up along the front cover

This time you can keep the crease right next to the edge of the book. Since the book shouldn’t shift that way, you don’t need any extra room.

5. Tape the book cover to itself along the front cover

Once you are satisfied with your folds, tape the cover to itself. Do NOT tape the cover to the book. This will cause damage, when the whole purpose of the book cover is to prevent damage to your new or used textbooks. Instead tape the folds of the cover to each other along the two outer corners.

6. Repeat steps 3-5 on the back cover.

Don’t forget to leave wiggle room on the side. Nothing is worse than covering a book and realizing you taped it too tightly to close.

7. Add extra tape to the spine and corners.

The spine and corners are the most often damaged parts of a book. By adding a strip of duct tape or packing tape to these spots you add a whole new level of protection. Whether you resell this textbook or keep it for reference, you’re going to want it in the best shape it can be.

8. Label the front and spine.

You don’t want to spend precious minutes every day opening all your covered textbooks until you find the right one. Take a moment now and label the spine and the front so you can recognize it on the shelf or on the table. Just make sure that you don’t use something that bleeds through onto the book below the cover.

9. Decorate!

This helps you distinguish your algebra textbook from your biology one, and keep track of your book among all your classmates textbooks. Plus, it’s fun! Some people tape a favorite personal photo or a celebrity hero. Others write an inspiring quote to keep them motivated. Other showcase their drawing skills. You can even show up on day one with a pristine blank cover and allow your doodles throughout the semester to slowly create one great masterpiece. Whatever you choose, make it yours.

Congratulations on covering your book and good luck with school! With such a clean start, you’ve got this!

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