Prayer Book Tutorial
Updated: Apr 3
While we're stuck indoors it seems like a perfect time for prayer, but it can be hard to relax and concentrate with everything that's going on. Here's a tutorial to make a small prayer book using a simple folding technique that will hopefully be a relaxing, creative way to pray. You can either watch the video or read through the step by step instructions with photos.
Why bother to make one?
You might think you don't have a creative bone in your body but you don't have to be an artist to make something! Taking the time out to make something or do some crafting helps to:
- Lower stress levels by concentrating on something quiet
- Writing things down helps to process emotion, stress, and helps with memory
- Making something helps to prevent overthinking and makes us focus on one thing at a time
- Completing something creates a feeling of achievement that releases those great chemicals in our brains that help us feel happier.
- Creativity helps the brain as it practices problem solving and critical thinking, when you're wondering how should I fill my prayer book? To your brain that's a problem you're trying to solve.
- Connect with God in a creative way!
You can make your book as simple or as complex as you want, it could be really wordy or have almost no words at all, it could be filled with colour or be just black and white, it could be large or really tiny. Take a look at a few of the ones I came up with and see if it gives you an idea!
Having trouble playing it?
Try this link instead:
Or here's the tutorial written out with photos:
What you'll need to make the folded book:
- Paper - it's great if you have a variety: card, small, large etc. but normal printer paper works just fine!
- Ruler - to help get crisp edges on your folds, this helps the book fold more neatly
Step 1: Fold the paper so the shorter sides meet
Step 2: Fold in half again
Step 3: Fold in half one more time!
Once folded back out, your paper should look like this, with 8 rectangles
Step 4: Fold back in half, turn the FOLDED edge towards you, this is the side we're going to cut
Step 5: Cut along the folded edge in the middle of the paper, up until the centre point, so halfway, NOT all the way across.
It should look like this!
Step 6: This one is a bit tricky but we're going to pinch the two sides that are not cut, pinch them together so the paper folds in half with the cut on the top.
Step 7: Then, still holding those two uncut sides, (the squares on the right and left) we're pushing the paper together, allowing the cut to open outwards into a square that we then squish together. It might need a bit of encouragement to open properly!
Once it's folded flat, we can fold it in half, like a book!
It should look like this, check it's right by leafing through!
Now, here's a very simple example of how you could fill your book...
On each page you could write a simple prayer or a few lines of one
Or you could dedicate each page to a person you want to pray for
Why not decorate the back cover?
Then open your book out, you can now fill the whole page, you could write a longer prayer, or a bible verse or anything you want
Then just fold up in the same way as before, folding it in half so the long edges meet, pinching the sides and pushing open the cut until it's folded back to a book. This should be easier than last time because it's been folded before!
But what if you want to be more creative? Here are some ideas to make your book more interesting...
Use watercolour paint, pencil crayons, pens, ink, acrylic paint etc. to colour in your paper, leave to dry and then paint the other side.
You can then use your colourful paper to follow the steps and fold your book.
Here I used watercolour paint and water soluble pencils.
Don't have any paint?
Use a strong cup of tea or coffee going spare to stain your paper (once it's cold!) on the front and back. Then once again, leave it to dry and follow the steps to fold your book.
Lastly, why not try collage?
You could cut up magazines, an old book, old greetings cards, letters, adverts, newspapers, photos etc. and stick them in your book. It's surprising how much you can find in unlikely places!
* Once you get to your inside larger page, just remember that anything you stick down shouldn't cover the opening otherwise your book won't fold back up or your collage will be ripped!
Rather than just having one simple book why not try some of these different ideas and think of some of your own?
Click through the finished books to see how different each prayer book can be!
Now get making!
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