Handmade Accordion Books
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Making Handmade Accordion Books with Kids


How to Make Handmade Accordion Books with Kids

This post contains affiliate links. We’ve been creating handmade accordion books recently, inspired by Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord’s new book, Handmade Books for a Healthy Planet.

Handmade Books for a Healthy Planet is filled with book projects based on different formats (scroll, accordion, comic book, slat book), with historical background and how-to information. She especially encourages using recycled materials for the books, including newspaper, paper bags, used wrapping paper, and cereal boxes.

First, we made a couple of accordion books (it was a joint effort) with newspaper, which was a lot of fun and involved the hole punch. Always a big hit! Then I thought of trying it with Maia’s large easel paintings (with her permission) both to keep to the spirit of Susan’s recycling message as well as to give new life to a couple of Maia’s many paintings.

Here are the step-by-step pics and instructions…

How to Make Handmade Accordion Books with Kids

Making Handmade Accordion Books with Kids


  • Large-ish artwork, such as from an easel painting
  • Cereal box cardboard
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Assorted papers or fabrics for collage
  • Drawing materials


1. Fold the paintings in half lengthwise, then into the accordion, by folding each end back to the center.

2. Cut out the book covers from the cereal box so that they’ll be just slightly larger than the accordion book when it’s folded up.

3. Decorate the covers with collage by gluing fabric scraps or paper pieces. Let dry.

4. Glue the covers onto the fronts and backs of the books.

How to Make Handmade Accordion Books with Kids

5. Add the book contents, either words or pictures or a combination of the two.

For one of the books, Maia dictated a story, and for the other, she dictated a get well message. Both were made for friends.

Handmade Accordion Books with Kids

I think this four page accordion format is about our (her) speed right now. Just enough space, but not too much.

But I’m also looking forward to trying other book formats and projects from Handmade Books for a Healthy Planet. I feel like a whole new creative avenue is opening up for us through making books!

How about you? Have you tried making handmade accordion books with your kids? Or any other kinds of homemade books?

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How to Make Handmade Accordion Books with Kids


  • Reply
    May 14, 2010 at 10:03 pm

    Fantastic ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    May 15, 2010 at 12:58 am

    My kids would love this!

  • Reply
    House Mother
    May 15, 2010 at 3:39 am

    I attended a book-making workshop lately at the local library and I completely agree with you in thinking it’s a whole new creative avenue to explore.
    Thanks for the tip on what sounds like a great book.

  • Reply
    May 15, 2010 at 10:09 pm

    This looks so fun. I’m starring this post and adding that book to our wishlist. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    May 16, 2010 at 8:50 am

    This is such a beautiful idea – it’s such a gentle introduction to creating your own books + more, importantly, stories. I love it.

  • Reply
    May 16, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    This looks so fun! I’m loving your site!
    I have something for you on my blog…momistheonlygirl.blogspot.com

  • Reply
    The Artful Parent
    May 17, 2010 at 7:36 am

    Thanks, Tricia!

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