How to Make Slipcases for Books

By Lissabeth Ross ; Updated September 15, 2017

Things Needed

  • Gray or white utility board
  • PVA glue
  • Buckram in a shade to match the book cover
  • Short length of ribbon (about 6 inches)
  • Ruler (optional)
  • Pencil
  • Pen knife
Protect treasured books by making your own slipcases.

A slipcase is a protective cover constructed from sturdy paper board that a book can be slipped into. Some books can be purchased with an accompanying slipcase, but you may also construct your own for storing and protecting your books. A very basic but attractive slipcase can be constructed in about 45 minutes, for a cost of about $20.

Use a thick piece of gray or white utility board. With the long grained side facing up, place the book you wish to cover on the board. If you are concerned about possible damage to the book, place it inside a protective cover such as a chemise of leather or vinyl. Use a pencil to trace the dimensions of the book on the board. Or use a ruler to determine the measurements of the book, and use the ruler to draw a rectangle of the appropriate size on the board.

Mark the utility board to indicate where the side panels should be cut, so that the case is a bit deeper than the book. This is necessary only if constructing your slipcase without a back panel -- simplifying the project and saving some time. Measure the two side panels and a top and bottom panel. If you're adding a back panel, also measure a piece slightly wider than the book's spine.

Double check all measurements before cutting the utility board, using a pen knife. Assemble the cut pieces into roughly the shape of a slipcase.

Apply PVA glue to the top and bottom edges of the side panels, and attach these to the top and bottom panel pieces. If adding a back panel, apply PVA glue to its edges, and attach it to one open end of the slipcase.

Measure and cut a strip of buckram to wrap around the slipcase. Attach the buckram to the case using PVA glue. Glue a small strip of ribbon to the inside of one of the side panels, with the end of the ribbon about halfway in the box. This ribbon can be used to gently pull the book from the slipcase without damaging the book.

About the Author

Lissabeth Ross began her career in journalism in 2005 as a staff writer for the "Journal of the Pocono Plateau." In addition to writing for several different newspapers, she served as the editor of the travel publication "News of The Poconos." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Rutgers University.