Have you seen the viral book ornament video going around?! You know, the one that holds tiny books that look like confetti, representing all of the books you read this year?! It’s magical and not as hard to make as you may think.
Last year, I lost count of how many family and friends sent me the viral videos saying, “you should do this!!”
Honestly, what a beautiful way to document your reading through the year! This is one of those treasures that you get excited to look back on year after year.
I decided to take on the craft and have outlined the steps for you below with a free Google template for lining up your book covers!
I’ve also linked all the materials you’ll need via Amazon. If you choose to make this craft for yourself, I hope you’ll consider using my affiliate links for your material purchases.
Let’s get to it!
First, you’ll need these items:
- 4” plastic ornament – I bought these. I liked that the ornament opens in half, it makes adding the books much easier! This traditional style will also work, but you will need to scale down your book cover images slightly to fit through the top opening.
- Printer-friendly sticker sheets
- Foam sheets
Note: you can get all of these individually at your local craft store, but I chose to buy all of these items in packs so that I could have them for years to come.
Note: I will have read ~100 books by the end of the year, which is why I opted for the 4″ ornament. If your reading total was 75 books or less, I think a 3″ ornament would be perfect!
You’ll also need a pair of sharp scissors, some decorative ribbon, and maybe a hot glue gun (personal preference!)
The most tedious part will no doubt be prepping your book covers. Pour a glass of something tasty and get to work! You’ll want to create two images of each cover, one for each side of the foam “book.” This will ensure that each book can be seen, no matter the facing side.
Have no fear, I’ve got a template ready to go that will perfectly pattern your covers! Drop your email in the box below and your template will be waiting in your inbox by the time you finish reading this post!
I discovered that the quickest way to pull images is to go to your Goodreads page, specifically your yearly Reading Challenge if you have one. There, you’ll see a list of thumbnail images of all of the books you read this year! These images are already small and will require minimal adjustment when you paste into your template.
Start copying and pasting into your Google Slides template!
Once you’ve correctly sized the fist image, copy it and paste to make the duplicate. This will save you a little time by not having to resize the second image.
Once you’re done aligning your book covers, print them on your sticker paper and get cutting!
Note: As I cut, I kept the matching covers together. I did not cut the duplicate covers apart until right before I stuck them to the foam. This will keep you from having to find n100 matching pieces.
If you want to be extra efficient (or if you’re a teacher and already have one of these at home), you can *cut* this time drastically by using a paper slicer.
This tool has come in handy time and time again, even outside of teaching! I highly recommend having one at home for general use!
The next step is prepping your foam pieces. If you followed my book cover template, you’ll cut your foam into 6/8” x 1” pieces. (Again, that paper slicer is gold.) If you scaled your images down to accommodate a top-opening ornament, cut out one of the images and measure to find the size needed to cut.
Alternatively, you can place one sticker of each book cover onto the foam sheet and cut them out individually. Then, place the duplicate sticker on the back side.
Place book cover stickers on both sides of the foam and drop them inside of the ornament!
Once all of your books have been added to the ornament, close it up!
Next, it’s time to add a ribbon to make a hanging loop. I can’t stand when an ornament hangs sideways because the ribbon has been threaded straight through the ornament. Here’s a trick to tying the ribbon in a way that will keep your ornament hanging flat. Fold the ribbon in half and thread the middle about an inch through the hole of the ornament. Then, loop the ends back through the middle section. After you’ve pulled it tight, you can tie the ends of the ribbon together to make a completed loop.
Dress it up by tying a bow with your ribbon. This is where you may want to use a drop of hot glue to keep the ribbon in place! (Note: if you plan to go back at a later date and add books read between now and the end of the year, you do not want to use glue yet.)
To go an extra step, add the year to your ornament with a small paint pen.
Note: As of writing this post, I have two months of reading left in 2022! I plan to add the books I read in November and December to the ornament in January.
Was this blog post helpful?! I’d love to know if you use these steps to commemorate your own reading.