So clever! Our favourite sustainable ways to cover those boring school books

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The internet has been buzzing with creative ways people cover their books.
The internet has been buzzing with creative ways people cover their books.

With the new school year that has kicked off for many, comes the dreadful task of covering school books. 

Well, for me it was a dreadful task. My mom did a great job until she decided I was old enough to take on the task myself. 

I got creative and wrote related quotes on my books, but that's nothing compared to some of these creative covers that have the internet abuzz.

Out with plain paper and down with plastic: these families have shared the more creative, and sustainable, solutions. 

Reduce, reuse, recycle

A group of friends up-cycled local chip packets and turned them into book covers, avoiding plastic, as a means to make a more positive contribution to the environment. 

To seal it they revealed they used baking paper underneath and on top of the foil packets, and ironed them onto one another, as the heat sealed the chip packets together.

Social media users describe this as innovative, creative and progressive and we agree entirely!

Trendy Tie-Dye

This grade four pupil not only used beautiful tie-dyed fabric to cover her books, she also stitched them together herself - and we love it!

People have responded with astonishment, and said it her book covers look fantastic. And no plastic!

Educational magazine inserts

Mom and media entrepreneur Olwethu Leshabane shared how she covered the books of her boys on Insta. She used fun trivia pages from a local magazine to cover their books as a means of nurturing a love for reading.

One inspired mom commented this motivated her to get up and cover her children's books.


Shweshwe fabric

Another gorgeous fabric option is shweshwe, a print widely used for traditional South African clothing. 

It was originally dyed indigo, but is now manufactured in a variety of distinctive colours and designs characterised by intricate geometric patterns.

If sewing isn't a parenting skill you've mastered yet, then Cape Town company, Ever Sew Clever, designs and produce reusable A4 book covers made from shweshwe fabric.


The owner of the company shares that after covering more than 30 books in 2019 for her two primary aged children she thought, "No more!".

Also, the use of paper and plastic is too much, too expensive, too costly to the environment and too work intensive so she came up with these covers that are reusable and can be washed.

Do you have any creative and unique way you used to cover books? Share them with us!

Chat back:

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Read more:

WATCH: 5 easy and creative DIY bookmarks for the new school term

WATCH: 3 easy ways to pimp your pencils

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