I worked with our editorial intern, Christa MacDonald, in putting this article together to repurpose packaging in an innovative, and stylish way.

Original Post at Design Packaging

As the summer season comes to a close, another one begins – back to school!

Days of lounging by the pool with good friends and refreshing drinks are being replaced with the hectic hustle of figuring out class schedules, joining clubs and dodging exes from last semester. The trick is looking good doing it. As Cher from Clueless puts it, you don’t want to be a “fashion victim or ensemble-y challenged”. As if!

What better way to accessorize your back-to-school ensemble than chic textbook wraps? Up-cycling your favorite retail packaging or luxury retail shopping bag is the perfect way to turn heads while being eco-friendly. Here’s a few luxury retail shopping bags I used to wrap my less-than-exciting textbooks along with a DIY for you to try at home.


  1. Gather your supplies: large retail packaging or retail shopping bag, tape, ruler, scissors, and book.
  2. Lay your shopping bag on a flat surface with the right side facing down. Lay your book on top, spine down and cover open. Using a ruler, trace a 2-3” border around your book. Cut along the lines.
  3. Starting at the bottom, fold the paper upwards, creating a 2” flap. Next, you will want to fold the top of the paper downwards, creating the top flap (About 2 1/2”). This will vary slightly, but the goal is to have about ¼” edge above and below the top and bottom edges of the book.  This will allow you space to wrap.
  4. Fold the left edge towards the center creating another 2” flap. Place your book against the fold at the left side and close the book. You can now create your final fold on the right cover edge, making sure that it is taut against the cover.
  5. When all of your folding is nicely creased, you will need to make 2 cuts for the spine, a set for the top and a set for the bottom. Tuck the spine flaps in and pull out all other flaps.  These can wrap around all of the book edges. I like to wrap the top and bottom flaps first, followed by the sides. Tape you flaps down and you are good to go.

Visual step-by-step guide. Instructions based on