Friends of mine are beginning to send their kids to school for the first time this year, and the parents were sometimes more anxious than the kids! One frequent groan I keep hearing has to do with books. Wrapping them up, to be precise. This is the season of contact paper! Very pretty when properly wrapped, with lots of cool patterns and colors to choose from, but very frustrating when it all curls up and turns into a sticky wad of mess. The contact paper, I mean. Not the kid. Or the parent trying to use the contact paper. Just clarifying :)
Thinking back to my elementary school days (and heck, early middle school too), my parents started out with contact paper too. At some stage, they discovered plastic sleeves that never quite fit my textbooks properly and moved back to contact paper again. Fluorescent ones this time. Eesh. I hated them so much that I used to cut out letters from the contact paper to expose messages with my textbook covers as the background.
The only type of book wrapper I ended up liking was the simplest kind. The ones made from our brown paper grocery bags. They were great! Cheap (free with groceries, yay!), easily replaceable, and provided a temporary doodling surface for notes and drawings when classes got a bit slow.
- Old gift bags or gift wrap, and add some blank labels or stickers to personalize (especially if your wrap is plain)
- Book Sox - reusable book covers (wish these were around at the time!)
- Ready-made book cover sleeves (I had to be careful with these because they sometimes tore at the corners when inserting the textbooks. Seems like they're now improved and stretchable.)
- Fabric (with or without a bit of padding)
- Washi tape (try and find the super wide rolls to make your life easier)
- Old maps (very cool for geography textbooks but be careful during tests, lest you get accused of cheating!)
Oh, and if you haven't gone through the rite of passage called textbook-wrapping, you can find out how to do it at Martha Stewart's page. Comes complete with snazzy variations (I must admit, I did the plastic-sleeve-in-front-of-a-binder thing for class schedules way back when. I was the nerdiest kid in class!)
What other things have you tried wrapping your books with?