Recycling Books for Eating, Sitting, Planting and Everything Else You Can Imagine

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Thursday Interior Accessories & Trinkets



Okay, who loves books? I like them but I am not a fanatic. There is one person in my life though who is passionately head over heels in love with anything written – my sister Susan!



Filipino Partridge Family Invades Syracuse!



My parents were working students at Syracuse University in New York and of course they had to bring all of us 5 – most of the time – well-behaved brats with them – Filipino Partridge family invades Syracuse! We lived in a small 2 bedroom apartment that had as neighbors working students from all over the planet. I had fun and wonderful memories of my childhood in the Syracuse University Married Student Housing Compound. One of those memories was of our eldest sister Susan, a teenager that time, being assigned the closet as her very own private space, meaning, her bedroom. None of the younger siblings were jealous or took it against her. Being the eldest, it was just the natural order of things in the family.



A local newspaper in Syracuse features our family.



This could have very well been Susan and her bedroom.



Her love for books, comic books and anything written transformed her own private closet into a haven that became a cozy library wonderland for all of us. Whenever Susan was not around, we the young ones would sneak in to read her Archie comic books, Emilie Loring, Barbara Cartland, Georgette Heyer novels. We would be transported to a world where we were the beautiful heroines who met dashing super rich handsome heroes living in mansions or be cool like Archie and have a gang of fun friends. Jughead was my favorite amongst Archie’s friends – super laid back, super geek, super cool. Pogo and Richie Rich were also much loved comic characters.



The turning point of our favorite sanctuary was when our mother decided enough was enough. The comic books and novels were threatening to invade the rest of our small house. Huge black garbage bags filled with our treasured paper backs and comics made their way to the trash bin. We all had to help. That fateful walk to throw most of the books away felt like doomsday — it was the end of the world for us. Yes, as ‘co-owners’ of the books we were crushed. Imagine what it was like for Susan! We can all laugh about it now. But Susan’s love for books never waned. That is why I hesitate to share this post with her.


What I am showing here are books being recycled, ‘re-imagined’ into everything else be it for eating, planting, sitting, just about anything you could think of except for being read. My dear sister Susan, should this article get to you, forgive me in advance. But for all the orphaned books out there threatened of being ignored and rotting to extinction or worse destined for the landfills, these projects are much better alternatives, don’t you think so? :)










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8 Responses to “Recycling Books for Eating, Sitting, Planting and Everything Else You Can Imagine”

  • I am shocked, An, SHOCKED, that anyone could desecrate books!!!!

    Seriously, they are very creative re-imaginings of the bound and printed word. I used to be very possessive of my books. I wanted to keep them forever. I remember when Mama put her foot down. I was a tragedy queen for weeks… but she was right. I tend to go overboard. Nowadays, I try to control myself by reading via Kindle. It’s not the same, but I motivate myself with the thought that it uses less of the earth’s resources… Still lots of books in my house, though…. Thanks to your blog, I was encouraged to clean up some of the book clutter. I finally saw the top of my coffee table again, after several years and piles of books and magazines…. Some things never change. LOL! Thanks for the memories… I loved that closet!

  • Ana

    Swanee…I love your word – ‘re-imaginings’ – it is better than recycling…can I borrow it? :)

  • I’ve seen books turned into a jacket for a kindle or nook, or a case for bric-a-brac. But those above are just too… well, creative! Now i know how to put my old law books into good use. Thanks Ana.

  • Ana

    Hi Erle…you are a lawyer? Yes, please share your picture of your old law books as a table? chair? which one?

  • You are forgiven, dearest sister, especially since you allowed me to re-live some precious memories. I still remember that closet, my private refuge. I would sit in the middle of coats and books and comics, and get lost in imagined worlds…. I think that was my version of Narnia’s/CS Lewis’ Wardrobe. :)

    Also, the projects here are beautiful and creative re-imaginings for books that are totally out of date, etc….Good project for the tax code, by the way :) Love ya!

  • Ana

    Wish we had a picture of you in that closet… :) love you!

  • Oh my! I wish I am an avid reader like your sis. I can understand some people who loves to read. For me, I like to have lots of books different styles, magazines, pocketbooks and they are all in line at night which one I will be choosing. But usually I will start and stop and get board which to show I am not a Reader. But truly I am happy because when I read it is really a path to being knowledgeable and being informed. That is why I envy people who can really finish a pocket book in a few days.

    BTW, I like those illustration books being redesigned/re- imagined. I got one in BKK, a side table made of books which you can still get in Chatukchak I was told.

  • Ana

    B, you and I are a lot a like. I am more into interior design, food and fashion magazines. I will only read a book if someone lends it to me.

    As with you in long skirts, please do share a picture of your side table so that I can include it in my blog! :)