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Create Marvelous Black Out Poetry in 4 Steps

Black Out Poetry is an aesthetically pleasing piece of poetry to embark on, and, believe it or not, it’s a calming DIY to take part in!

You may have seen some interesting takes on Black Out Poetry on Instagram or Pinterest, and perhaps you even wondered how the heck someone gets such a fascinating idea in their head.

We will walk you through 4 easy steps to create your own Black Out Poetry and even show you some samples!

You can get into the creative spirit for National Poetry Month along with Poem in Your Pocket Day, or you can get into it because you want to write a poem!

The magic of Black Out Poetry is there isn’t a wrong way to do it; with that, let’s get to learning.

Steps in creating your own black out poetry. Supplies of vintage book, pencil, and sharpie. Black out poetry examples.

4 Steps to Create Black Out Poetry

Although it looks a bit in-depth and perhaps even complicated, Black Out Poetry can be broken down into 4 simple steps that are very easy to follow. Even for a beginner poet, you’ll see your skills blossom and shine as you get the hang of how Black Out Poetry works. It’s an exciting step into the poetry world!
Once you go through each of these steps, your creative brain will be trying to catch up with all the light bulbs and inspiration you’ll be brewing up!

Supplies: 3 Items (minimum)

Every DIY needs its handy-dandy supplies list, and luckily for this fun and creative activity you really only need 3 items! Unless, of course, you’d like to get a little extra fancy. Then, you’ll need to recruit some further extras. But, this Black Out Poetry DIY the essentials break down into 3 items.

  • Used Book/Black Out Poetry Book
  • Pencil
  • Sharpie

Every piece of Black Out Poetry starts with the page of a book. We don’t recommend tearing up a perfectly fine book; it still has a reading life to live! What we do suggest is taking a trip to your local antique/thrift store and looking through their book section to see if there are some books that are already damaged or unreadable. And the alternative is to purchase a book that’s specifically for Black Out Poetry purposes!

For the majority of the Black out Poetry shown in this article, they come from the pages of an old book that was found at an antique shop. It was weathered, the inside pages were torn, and stained. And so, the book was given a second life by being repurposed for Black Out Poetry and other crafts. Plus, what’s really neat about thrifting a Black Out Poetry book is you get a genuine vintage aesthetic along with your beautiful poem.

Vintage and weathered book for black out poetry.
Old vintage book.

Step One: Choose Your Page

Once you have your book, it’s time to select a page for your poem! A helpful tip is to read over the page, or skimming is fine too. What you’re looking for is a good variety of “filler words” such as, the, he, she, they, it, was, be, and so on. These words are good at being the glue in your poem’s sentences. You’ll also want to look for words that stand out to you and are interesting; these words can be the focal points of your poem!

Steps in creating your own black out poetry. Supplies of vintage book, pencil, and sharpie.

Step Two: Underline Your Desired Words With A Pencil

Now that you’ve got your snazzy page all picked out, it’s time to grab your pencil and start underlining the words of your poem! You’ll want to make sure that the words you underline are in order so they read smoothly. You’ll be able to see examples further down in this article. Be sure to underline in pencil lightly!

Steps in creating your own black out poetry. Supplies of vintage book, pencil, and sharpie.

Step Three: Black Out All Other Words Aside From Underlined

Time for the fun part, blacking out the poem! With your sharpie, begin covering the non-underlined words so that only your chosen words are visible.

It helps to have a thicker sharpie so that way you can run the sharpie along its side and nicely cover the words you aren’t using. Although, using a regular-sized sharpie can work just fine too.

What can also assist you in this process is drawing a box around your underlined words so they don’t get lost amongst the sharpie bulldozing; you don’t want to accidentally black out your poem’s words!

Below is a picture of a completed blacked-out poem so you can get a clear visual.

Steps in creating your own black out poetry. Supplies of vintage book, pencil, and sharpie.

Step Four: Jazz up your page (if you so wish)

And last but not least, once your poem is all blacked out (or even before if that’s a part of your creative vision), you can add some extra details if you’d like! This can be anything from taping on little aesthetic extras and drawings or punching holes to hang it up. There isn’t a right or wrong way to express yourself with poetry, and in the next section, you’ll be able to see a variety of samples to get those ideas flowing!

Now, if you’re going with the Blackout Poetry Book route, the steps are the same; you’ll just be looking at many different types of pages!

Make blackout poetry book.
Black out poetry book. Black out poetry examples.

Examples of Black Out Poetry

As mentioned above in step 4, you can get really fun and creative with your poem’s pages. Below are some examples of finished Black Out Poetry; we encourage you to take a look and further your exploration! Admiring a variety of Black Out Poetry pieces can help you become familiar with the art form, and also inspire you to come up with your own ideas.

We’ll give you a few running-off points that you can use or put your own creative spin on!

Example of black out poetry. Black out poetry for National Poetry Month.
  • Instead of using a black sharpie, try out some colors!
  • Cut out a silhouette and place it on your poem
  • Incorporate stickers or scrapbook-type decor into your page
  • Ditch the sharpie and use paint!
  • Frame the final version of your Black Out Poetry and gift it
  • Are you a glitter person? Glitter it up!
Samples of creative ways to do black out poetry on your own. Artistic DIY for black out poetry.

The possibilities are limitless, and it can be a fun yet relaxing exercise/DIY to get the creative juices flowing and your mind stimulated. Want to have some extra fun? Make it into a fun craft night and even add in some more poetry activities!

Black Out Poetry Tips

We know going into something new can be a bit intimidating, but we want to reassure you that you’re more than ready to embark on your Black Out Poetry adventure. But we don’t want you to feel like you’re lost at poetic sea, so we’ll leave you with some Black Out Poetry tips!

  • Familiarize yourself with Black Out Poetry by exploring other’s work on social media with #Blackoutpoetry
  • Tap into your poetic side by writing up a few proses or learning how to write a poem
  • Don’t be afraid to do a few practice tries!
  • Before underlining your words for your poem, be sure to find a few exciting words that intrigue you that you can center your poem around
  • Get some friends or family in on the activity; those creative vibes really flow in a group setting!
Black out poetry examples. Vintage pages of black out poetry.

We hope that you’ve gotten a new-found excitement for Black Out Poetry and you’re ready to take on this fun DIY on your own! Don’t be afraid to share it and hashtag it online; you never know what kind of community you could stumble upon.

Get in the spirit of sharing as well for National Poetry Month, every April, and Poem in Your Pocket Day on April 27th!

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