Beach reads, den reads, Autumn reads

posted in: Good old fashioned fun | 7

Whilst I was away on holiday in Orkney earlier this month, I entered a local crafts show with an exhibit made from items I had found on the beach where we were staying:

I made tiny books out of shells and thought I’d share the process with you on the blog.

First I found lots of shells where both sides were still joined together. I slipped a folded sheet of paper in between the shell halves and draw round the shell shape.

This gave me the template for my pages. For each shell book I cut out 8 folded pages.

I then bound all the pages together, using needle and thread…

..before gluing an extra strip of paper across the binding to help keep all the pages together.

Once the glue was dry I wrote in the pages of my book (excerpts from Orkney folk tales) before fixing the pages to their covers…

Over night the glue dried and the next day, my beach books were ready for reading!

I’m delighted to say I won first prize for my shell craft, and more importantly, I’ve come home with a really very special reminder of my lovely holiday.

Our holiday involved lots of walking and cycling with long days outside. It’s not surprise that since we’ve returned, the girls have enjoyed some “down time” cozying up with a good read or two and not rushing anywhere

Old sheets, a washing line or two and a basket of clothes pegs are all you need plus a selection of old favourites mixed in with a few “new” books to tempt exploration.

Whilst it doesn’t take much to encourage den reading in our family, we were prompted to build this one (and invite all the girls’ cat toys to join us) having heard about the new Bear and Puffin’s Big Book Club, a new way for groups (whether family, friends, classmates or clubs) to explore books together.

Each month there will be free extracts and linked activities available for four books – two picture books and two novels/chapter books (for children aged 6-12). If you’re looking for a new way to structure exploring books for fun in your family, school or community group, the Bear and Puffing Big Book Club might be just the help you need to get going.

Whether or not you ask members to take their “shoose” off before they start reading will be up to you…

So, beach reads, den reads… that just leaves autumn reads.

Whilst I’ve a pile of books by my bed to keep me going for several months, I can’t help but look forward to what else is being published in the next few months. These are just some of the titles I’m particularly looking forward to reading and sharing:

What are your favourite holiday reading memories? What are you most looking forward to reading in the next few weeks and months?

7 Responses

  1. Alice

    I love the shell books! So delicate. Also, as it’s rainy and miserable here today, you’ve inspired us to build a den today. Thanks!

    • Zoe

      Thank you Alice. And I’m very happy to hear you’re building a book den today. Hope you get to enjoy it as well as the kids!

  2. Dianne Hofmeyr

    Funny how children love to make dens… no matter what age. My granddaughter of 12 made one the other day a la Arabian Nights with white sheets and lanterns and a tassled rug and happly lay reading. The book ‘Poetic Spaces’ speaks of this universal need to create small contained environments.

    Your shell creations are marvellous Zoe. I’m here in South Africa fixing up after a huge fire swept around my house and along the coast. Perhaps thats just what I need to do… make shell stories… to take my mind off the devastation to these dunes.

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