ideas & suggestions

Business Cubes?

Whilst perusing the stalls at the TENT London design show a few weeks back, I was reminded of the importance of exhibitors’ business cards and informational flyers, especially when there’s a vast amount of finely crafted aesthetics and innovation competing for the attention of visitors, and potential investors or collaborators.

The ability for visitors at these kinds of shows to take a small souvenir away with them that serves as a contacts resource and reminder of the experience is key, particularly if the exhibitor is engaged in conversation or demonstrating their work to someone else, leaving no opportunity to directly talk to them and forge a link. I gathered quite a few cards at TENT – mostly as a trigger for later research – storing them in the back of my notebook so they wouldn’t get lost.

Often, there is a disparity between the design and information on these cards, and the intrigue I had when looking at the product or concept on display. It struck me that creating StoryCubes that act as keepsakes from the experiences might bridge this gap; shouldn’t high-end design work have a suitable counterpart for promotion? Obviously a cube is a lot more unwieldy than a card, even when folded flat, but perhaps in the process of taking the care to protect it, having to physically carry it rather than stuffing it into a wallet or pocket, it becomes more than just a scrap of details – a three-dimensional memento, almost a trophy, that can sit on a desk or shelf, hopefully stirring up the same interest its new owner had when looking at its source.

ideas & suggestions

DIY Diary

I remember as a little girl keeping a diary of what I remember of totally random things, which if I looked back on now, would be quite cringe worthy!

There’s all sorts of diaries available on the market, however a diary is a personal thing and Bookleteer can most defiantly relate to this. Bookleteer allows customisation, meaning a diary can personalised. There’s the freedom to have as many pages and whichever days wanted and put whatever they like into the diary. Additionally making the diary by hand will make it feel more ‘their own’ and special.

Take a look at the example I created below of a front page and the inside.

Encourage your younger relatives to get on Bookleteer to unleash their creativity! A great activity to do over Easter and Summer!

ideas & suggestions

Yoga Guide Book

In stressful times of work and family life, a little ‘you time’ is always good! Yoga, is not only a great stress relieving activity, but great for the body too! If yoga classes aren’t for you or you simply don’t have the time to attend, maybe my ‘Yoga Guide’ can be of help!

I have stuck to the scrapbook idea, which Bookleteer can be used for, over and over again for many different purposes. I like the idea of having a handy guidebook, as it is small enough to fit into a pocket or handbag and can be easily transported anywhere you like. You can even print out more copies from Bookleteer for your friends and family.

Take a look at the mock up of my ‘Yoga Guide’ below.

Each page shows two different yoga poses, beautifully drawn by Mandy (thanks Mandy!) and the name of each pose. Additionally I drew the ‘om’ sign, the Hindu symbol, and is frequently chanted when doing yoga, to create a sense of inner peace and tranquility.

Create your own version on Bookleteer!

ideas & suggestions

Camping guide/scrap book

A mini guide to an activity is always a great ‘must – have!’ Using Bookleteer to create a type of guide is a quick and easy way to do so, with the handy pocket size, easily fitting into a pocket or a handbag, meaning easy access whenever needed! Creating the guide or even a scrapbook, means its can be printed numerous time for many people and purposes.

There are a variety of things I decided to include in my camping guide. For example:

  • how to build a tent.
  • a survival kit/checklist – compass, plasters, tents, sleeping bags, a whistle, a torch and so on.
  • a map of the area

Alternatively, you can add to the guide and turn it into a scrapbook too, so for children not only is it an informative book, but also a keepsake or memento if you like of their camping trip. For example in my scrapbook I included:

  • blank pages for a treasure hunt map – for kids on camping trips it could be a fun idea to draw treasure hunt maps in each others books and have a competition to see who can find the most ‘treasure.’
  • ‘My Journal’ section to write about my daily (and nightly) happenings.
  • activity pages – ‘starry eyed’ – search the sky for constellations – draw and match up the stars in the sky, or ‘night time sounds’ – listen, write and guess what your hear in the woods!
  • Keepsake pages – ‘things I found on my camping trip’ – collecting and sticking in things found, such as different types of leaves, funny shaped twigs etc.

Have a look at the ‘Guide to Camping for Kids’ book I have created…

This is a format which can be replicated for a number of activities, such as Sailing, Skiing, Golf, Poker, Surfing and the list goes on!





ideas & suggestions

A,B,C..easy as..1,2,3

In my previous blogs I have mentioned about the variety of eBooks you can make on Bookelteer, from invites, to user guides to scrapbooks. However I haven’t yet mentioned how Bookleteer can be used in the learning process as a valuable learning tool.

A number of ideas prop to mind when I think of using Bookleteer in education. The part I like most is that it’s not restricted to one age bracket. From younger children to older kids in secondary school an eBook can be used in many ways.

For example, for the younger age group, I have created an alphabet book. This can be customised to the child’s preference, such as using their favourite cartoon characters on each page as a visual stimulant. Of course this is where the older brother or sister or parent come in use, to actually create the book on Bookleteer. Or a blank eBook can be printed and with the guidance of parents, children can help draw and stick each letter onto each page, a fun learning activity all rolled into one!

As for the older kids, Bookleteer can be used as an alternative way of presenting coursework, projects, art projects or even as a revision tool or a diary format to keep track of their revision timetable/schedule.

Using Mandy’s artistic ability, I made a mock up of what the alphabet eBook could look like if it was made.

Log onto Bookleteer to see where it can take you…







ideas & suggestions

Make up scrap book

The magazines are full of make up tips and latest trends of colours for the new season. Sure I will rip the page out and vow to refer to it the next time I need that handy tip for the smoky eyes look! However amongst all the things on my desk, from books to documents to photos, that little piece of paper will surely get lost in the heap!

It’s great to use Bookleteer as a tool for making scrapbooks for example making a make up catalogue if you like, or even to create your own make up tips. Have a look at the eBook I created on ‘eye make up tips’ below.

It’s quick and easy to print out, and small enough to keep with your make up or can even be folded to fit into your make up bag. 🙂

Either design, upload and print your scrapbook out on Bookleteer or print out a plain eBook and start cutting, sticking and creating your own make up tips scrapbook.




ideas & suggestions publishing on demand

crowdfunding publications

The estimable Alex Steffen, founder of, has recently announced a new project – Carbon Zero: A Short Tour of Your City’s Future – which he’s attempting to fund through the crowdfunding site kickstarter. This is a really interesting idea and something we’re keen to investigate ourselves, having had some small success with our own Alpha Club crowdfunding efforts. I wrote last year about investigating the ways in which crowdfunding could be linked to forms of rapid publishing like bookleteer’s short run printing service to make it even more accessible to people who just want to produce a small number of books without having to bear all the costs up front.

Alex’s project is on a bigger scale than this, and suggests a very different approach to the problem of funding the time required to research and write the books, not just print them. This has some obvious and interesting implications for publishing as a whole, and for other creative endeavours as well. The concept seems so simple – the people who want to read his book also pay for the writing of it – but which has some other subtle implications. Usually we buy books (or other media) after the fact of writing – the burden of supporting the artist or writer is usually absorbed through some form of patronage (via public grants or private sponsorship), or through the personal dedication and effort of the individual themselves. But asking the readers to pay for more than the cost of the book, to support the very effort of making is to ask people to become part of the process. It establishes the possibility of creative work being seen in dialogue with others, as a craft, not just as something which appears magically from an aloof and remote genius. More and more the previously mysterious and detached processes of creative people are being acted out in ways that allow others to take part in some way or be witness. It is an empowering and transformational process that I believe gives hope to others that their own forms of expression may also have value. This is not about the distinction between amateur and professional or high/low art – tired debates now – but about that scope for the craft, skill and impact of creative people to be seen in relation to the work of others and valued in new and meaningful ways.

bookleteer is part of a toolset we have been building for more than a decade for public authoring and to enable cultures of listening. These tools are sometimes techniques which we develop to help people combine other media, to figure out how to create their own tools as much as use ones we may have introduced them too. What Alex is demonstrating with this project is not only how to use such tools, but how to create a community around the process of making too. With our new programme of projects, Public Goods, which we start next month too, we are hoping to engage people in similar processes of taking part in the construction and sharing of cultures and cultural artefacts that they value. Our new series of City As Material events in towns across the UK and abroad will be an important part of setting the frame for this kind of dialogue and collaboration, and perhaps a way for us to explore crowdfunding in direct collaboration with the people who want to contribute and participate.

Alex is aiming to reach his goal or raising $10,000 by Earth Day, Thurs April 14th – he’s more than 50% of thew way there (at time of writing). I do recommend supporting him as the results (judging from the wonderful 2nd edition of the Wordchanging book just published) are bound to be great.

examples ideas & suggestions publishing on demand

City As Material Set

We’ve just received the complete set of 10 City As Material books back from the printers and next week we’ll be designing and making the special slipcases to hold them together and collect them into their limited edition (50 copies). The set will go on sale from the 31st March 2011 via the proboscis online store.

We think this is a great way of showing how easy it is for individuals or groups to create and print multiple books in short runs (such as 50 copies) that can be collected together to make a beautiful publication. We will be aiming to add the ability to design and print out your own slipcases to bookleteer later this year, but in the meantime we’re happy to discuss designing and printing custom slipcases for your projects.

ideas & suggestions

Poker Guidebook

It’s great when the whole family gets together to play games, its so much fun, especially at Christmas time. But then I see the silver briefcase come out and it can only mean one thing! It’s time to get your poker face on! The only trouble is I can’t play poker 🙁

I constantly ask what hands are what; ‘what’s a flush?’ ‘what’s a full house?’ and the list goes on. I think I could be an annoying poker player with all my questions and confusion. Leave it to the pros…I think not!

I always think if I had a book with all the poker plays listed and the rules, it would be great! Easy to refer to in a time of need. No cheating, simply a reference! 😉

Creating this type of book is so simple using Bookleteer. Being able to download images straight from a website, it’s quick and easy to create this book for your own personal use. Each page can be assigned to each type of poker, or a book for each type – Texas Holdem, 5 card draw, 7 card stud etc.

Take a look at a quick glimpse of my book I have created…

Easy and fun to make, with your own personal touch, so you can make it as complicated or as easy to understand as you want.






ideas & suggestions

You have been invited to…

I was watching my 12 year old cousin plan out her party invites to her 13th birthday party, as I remembered using the same method when I was younger, using Publisher or making them by hand.

As I watched her I realised how much more she could do with her invitations by creating them on Bookleteer! A more creative way to make an invitation. You can insert pictures, maybe one of the birthday girl/boy on the front or have different coloured invites by using different coloured printing paper!

I find this method fast and easy and I think it looks more professional than the conventional booklet making. Being able to upload your own pictures or even straight from html saves the hassle of downloading or saving a picture first!

This can be used for endless occasions, not just birthday parties, which then means anyone from kids to adults can be using this method to make invitations. Weddings, baby showers, hen parties..the list is endless.

Have a look at the mock up birthday invitation I have created.

Get creative, get Bookleteering! 🙂