Monday, July 18, 2011

An easy way to make cute notebooks!

Better late than never I guess.... I am finally getting around to making the rest of my 30 Days of Creativity things before I do the giveaway.

Today I didn't feel like doing anything but I gave myself a kick in the proverbial and made a little notebook. Very simple and a lot of fun. You can get pretty creative with what papers you use but I wanted mine to be fairly minimalistic. (Let's not talk about the mess I made in the spare room while making this little number shall we? Really, I don't know how I do it... this is not a messy thing to do and yet I make it that way... >.< )

Click below for the how to.

Things you will need (and a running commentary on what I used) :
  • 1 x cereal box (or similar weight card)
  • A selection of paper for the inside (you can do whatever you want)
  • 1 x sharp craft knife (sharp is good.. dull knives are the worst!)
  • Some strongish glue (I used Elmer's School Glue - it's pretty strong but can also be pretty wet, so I used a paintbrush to paint on thin layers... which reminds me, better go wash that baby out!)
  • 1 x ruler (I like my metal ruler because I can't accidentally shave some off ;) It has been known to happen...)
  • 1 x Shipping Tag (Optional - I used it as a decorative way to close my book)
  • 1 x Mini Bulldog Clip (Optional - I used it as a decorative way to close my book)

Step 1:
Flatten out cereal box (skip this step if you have flat card)

Step 2:
Measure and mark the size you want your notebook to be. My finished notebook is 13cm by 8cm so I measured 13cm by 16cm (so you can fold it in half to get final size)

Step 3:
Glue something nice on the printed side of the cereal cardboard (unless you want the cereal box look). You can make the brown the inside or outside of the cover, your choice.

Step 4:
Cut the inside pieces to size. As you can see, I chose a range of papers, including some images and lined paper for variety. 

Step 5:
Score the middle of the cover with a bone folder (if you don't have one, use the back of a butter knife like me), and inside papers if you want. I didn't do this but had to go through and fold the papers to make them lay flat after I bound it.
(make sure you score as close to the middle as you can - don't worry too much, you can trim uneven edges off later)

Step 6:
Sew along the score line. I used a lovely yellow thread to go with the yellow I used inside. Get creative, red would be nice, or brown to keep it natural looking.
NB: I didn't use the pedal to sew, instead used the hand sewing wheel option (what is that thing called?!), that way I had more control and less chance of breaking the needle 
(I have broken needles sewing card a few times.. always scary, especially when you are super close to the needle trying to get a good look at what you are doing!)

Step 7:
Once you fold the book in half you may have some of the inside papers sticking out past the cover - never fear, this is where trusty sharp knife comes in! Get your ruler, line it up against the edge of your cover, press down firmly and trim off the edges. 
Please don't cut your fingers off on this step. I didn't take any pictures of this step, I  thought that unwise! (and I don't mean the cutting off fingers step, I mean the other one... the non cutting off fingers one :)

Step 8: Optional Decoration
Take your shipping tag and score two lines wide enough to fold around your notebook - this will vary depending on how much paper you used.

Step 9:
Glue one side to the back of your notebook, somewhere close to the middle(it's not too important - wherever looks good to you)
You could even sew the tag on if you wanted more sewing detail.

Step 10:
Secure with mini bulldog clip 
(I tried to use magnets but didn't have any strong enough. This would be a nice touch if you don't like the bulldog clip)

Step 11:
And you're done! Fill it with whatever your heart desires.. Don't be scared, just do it!

Hope you enjoyed my little tutorial! Ask away if you have any questions and feel free to share this tutorial around, I just ask that you credit my little blog :)

All photos ©FIKS*D