DIY,  Katherine's Posts

DIY Hollowed Book Tutorial

Have you ever tried hollowing a book before? Prior to this project, I hadn’t. But thanks to TWN reader, Penelope, who suggested it, I gave it a try. And I’m so glad I did!! It was so much fun!! (Penelope, if you’re reading this, THANK YOU SO MUCH for the suggestion!!!)

What You Need:

  • Book or blank journal (Very important! Without this, you have no project.😜)
  • Mod Podge
  • Paintbrush
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Box cutter or craft knife
  • Towel
  • Toothpick (or some other tool to help pull out the sheets)
  • Tissue paper (optional)


For this project, I used a blank journal. The journal wasn’t being used, and Issabelle didn’t want it anymore. But the cover was so beautiful, so I decided to use it for this project.


Step 1: Place the book you plan to use on a towel to protect your work surface. Then open the front cover and using the paintbrush and Mod Podge, paint/glue along the pages’ outer edge. (If your glue gets along the edge of the back cover, then it should glue it to the pages so the back won’t open.) Also, when the glue is dry, run your finger along the edge of the pages. I love how it feels nice and smooth. XDD

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Step 2:Β After the pages have dried, use a ruler and pencil to draw the straight lines where you’ll cut out the pages.

Step 3: For this next step, please be extra careful not to cut yourself! Use the box cutter or craft knife to cut out the pages. This part is more time consuming than the other steps, but take your time; no need to rush. Also, this where you might want to use a toothpick or other pointy tool to help lift the pages out after you’ve cut them. (This is especially useful the deeper you get in the book!) Cut as deep as you want, but don’t cut all the way to the bottom of the book. First off, it’s harder to cut out the pages the farther you go, and second, you’ll want some of the back pages to show for the base of your hollowed book. (For example, if you’re hollowing a book, some of the pages with words would be the bottom of your hollowed-book.)

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Step 4:Β After you’ve cut as deep as you want, Mod Podge the inside pages where you’ve cut.

You’re book can be considered complete here, but if you want something decorative to line the base of your book, you can continue on to Step 5.

Step 5: (Optional.) Using Mod Podge, glue print/decorative tissue paper or fabric to the inside of your book. (What I really like about the decorative tissue paper I used is that you can see the journal page’s lines through the design of the paper. It looks amazing!)

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And that’s it! Now you can put whatever you want inside your hollowed book.Β 

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(This is a side note, but this project results with a stack of paper left over. Outside of choosing to recycle the leftover pages, I have a few ideas on ways to reuse them. For the journal pages, you could reuse the paper for notes, like shopping lists, or make mini journals out of them. Then for the book pages, you could save them and use them for diy book page crafts Maybe use them for scrapbooking or collages. I’m sure the possibilities are endless!)

What did you think of the project? Do you have any questions? Have you hollowed a book before? What would you store in your book if you had one? Also, does anybody have any tips for taking good pictures? (I loved to hear any advice and tips y’all have!πŸ˜‰) I can’t wait to hear from you!

~ Katherine


  • Rylie

    THIS IS SO CUTE!!!! *needs to find an empty notebook and get mom to let her use a craft knife* I’d love to make one bc of all the cool movies where they hide stuff in books. XD

    • Katherine

      Awwww, girl, THANK YOU!!!!!😊 *helps Ry find an empty notebook and tries to convince her mom to let Ry use a craft knife* XDD Aaahh, YES, definitely!!!! It’s perfect!! I hope you get to make one! πŸ˜‰

  • Corrie.S.P

    The only way I would do this to a book would be if it was a broken or ripped paged book. I would like to try this with a notebook though.
    Thanks for sharing!!

    • Katherine

      I know what you mean, girl. I’m the same way. As bibliophiles, it’s so hard to cut up a book. So I’m glad the journal worked. πŸ˜‰ Ooh, yes, you should try it!! It’s really fun!!
      Aw, you are so welcome!!

  • Lillian Keith

    Oh, I’ve seen those kinds of books before! I’ve been wanting to look into book art and stuff like it, so this tutorial was super helpful. Thanks so much, Katherine! (And I love that journal, by the way. So pretty!)

    • Katherine

      Cool! Book art is so cool, isn’t it?! And it’s really pretty too! πŸ˜‰ Aw, I’m so glad this tutorial was helpful! That makes me so happy to hear!!<33 You are so very welcome, Lily!!! (Thank you!!)

  • Grace A. Johnson

    Me: *sobs* Those pagessssssss!!!! It’s book murder!!!!!!!

    Also me: *heart eyes* It’s so prettyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!

    As you can see, there’s some internal conflict going on here. LOL! Seriously, though, this is SO neat! I just might give it a try one day! (But DEFINITELY not with a book with words in it. *shudders* An empty journal will suffice. XD)

    Thanks for sharing, Kat! πŸ˜€

    • Katherine

      🀣🀣🀣 I totally feel ya with the internal conflict. XD As a book lover, it’s so hard to cut up a book, yet at the same time, the project looks amazing. And that’s why I was glad Issabelle gave me that journal.πŸ˜† Ah, thank you!! Ooh, yes, you should give it a try!! It’s pretty cool and perfect for hiding something in it! (Haha, yes, definitely use a journal instead. XD)

      Aw, you’re SO welcome, Gracie!! πŸ˜€ <33

  • Emma

    Ahhhh this is such a brilliant suggestion from Penelope!!! I’ve always loved the idea of hollowed books!! That journal is absolutely gorgeous and it makes for the perfect hollowed book!! *heart eyes* I’m totally going to do this someday!! You did an awesome job showing how to do it, Kat!!! <333

    • Katherine

      Aahhh, I agree!!! It totally is!!!! And so much fun too! Ah, I know, right?! Hollowed books are so cool! And best of all, no one else knows that something may be hiding in it! XDD Aw, thank you!!! It’s all thanks to Issabelle who gave the journal to me. XD Ooh, yes, yes, YES, you should!! πŸ˜€ It’s not hard at all! (And I’d love to see a picture of it if you do!πŸ˜‰) Awwww, thank you so much, E!!!!<3333

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