Handmade Fabric Notebook

Christmas Planning In July – Making Handmade Fabric Notebooks

Earlier this month I got together with a talented and craft friend to make the first batch of hand made Christmas Presents for the year.

Our first get together in July was a planning meeting. For my crafty friend, this was very kind of her to indulge by planning nerdiness as she is a far more a go with the flow type of gal – so thanks for your patience! We decided to make a couple of items that would use similar materials and would not only make a nice gift set, but would also reduce waste and cost.

The first item for us to make was fabric covered notebooks. Now a big nod needs to go to Rachel from Booked Into Art who taught us how to make these books at the launch of Mixtape Zine Issue 3 at Sticky Institute.

If you would like to make a fabric covered notebook, you will need the following items:

    – fabric of your choice
    – a thick cardboard for the outer cover
    – thin white cardboard for the inner cover
    – recycled paper for the pages
    – thin ribbon to bind the book
    – a small bead for the ribbon
    – craft glue
    – hammer and nail (for making holes in spine)
    – thick needle for threading ribbon

Glueing The Cardboard

(1). The first step was to cut the thick cardboard to half the size of an A4 piece of paper. Using a scrap of cardboard, cover the cardboard with glue and then place on fabric.

It is a good idea to put old magazine paper or catalogue pages underneath the area that you are working. You just remove these if glue gets on them, so the fabric does not get glue on the outside.

Cutting Corners Of Fabric

(2). Cut the corners at an angle, so when the edges are folded, there are neatly covered corners.

(3). Glue the edges down to the thick cardboard. Glue the white cardboard on top of the thick cardboard, so as to make a nice inner cover. Store under a heavy book between magazine sheets, while you get paper ready.

(4). The recycled paper which will make the pages needs to be approx 0.5cm smaller in all dimensions, so that it will fit nicely into the book.

Folding Book In Half

(5). Fit the cover and the pages together and mark halfway. Fold at the halfway mark.

Making Holes In Spine

(6). Using a nail and hammer (wooden block underneath) make two small holes on the fold mark of the book.

Threading Ribbon
(7). With the thick needle, thread the ribbon through the holes, so the additional lengths of ribbon is on the outside. Close book and tie a not on the outside of the spine to keep the tightly in place. Thread a small bead on the end of the ribbon and tie a not to secure it.

Completed Fabric Notebook

(8). Wrap ribbon around book and weave ribbon on itself so it keeps the notebook closed tightly. And that’s it. It is a good idea to keep the book flat under a heavy item until it is dry.

Using a production line approach, we managed to come out of the evening (a long evening) with 10 fabric covered notebooks each. I do love to give a handmade gift at Christmas to teachers etc, so it will be great to have them ready when the festive season comes along.

I will show you our second creation which we made to match up with the notebooks in a separate post. Are you making anything already for Christmas? If so leave a link so I can come and take a peak!