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Home Improvements: Cookbook makeover

Give your spattered old cookbooks a one-minute makeover that will leave them looking as good as new if not better.

Don't you just hate it when your favourite cookery books start to look really manky, thanks to the constant spattering they're subjected to? Here's a way of making them look fabulous, and so much more practical, in about a minute.

All you need is a small piece of oilcloth, scissors and spray glue. First, give the cover of the book a good wipe (with some scouring cream if it's really filthy) to remove any grease. Wipe with a clean, damp cloth and dry thoroughly. Open the book and lay it flat on the oilcloth. Cut a piece of material with a margin of about 2cm all the way round. Then spray glue over the front and back covers and spine.

Now lay the back of the book flat on the oilcloth and press down firmly, making sure there are no wrinkles. Bring the cloth all the way around the book, pressing into any indentations around the spine as you go. Leave to dry for a few minutes, then cut the excess cloth all around the sides of the book. It means you will have raw edges, but that's fine - they won't fray.

* Tip taken from Simply Wonderwoman: A Survival Guide For Women With Too Much To Do (Kyle Books) by Joanna Gosling, Dh103, www.amazon.com

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