I was looking for a simple way to make a book/journal from some scrap paper that I had. I decided to make the cover from craft foam and use paracord to bind it, I also attached a bookmark from knotted paracord .
Step 1: Materials and Tools:
- Craft foam*, different colours if you want to embellish the book cover
- Hole punch
*If you want a harder cover use cardboard instead.
Step 2: Prepare Paper
Line up all the edges of the paper and hold together with a clip. You will need to make two holes in the stack of paper approximately 0.5cm in from the edge of the paper. To do this, simply measure the height and mark a spot 1/3 and 2/3rds down from the top for the holes to go. If you have a thick stack of paper, it may be easier to use a drill to make the holes.
Step 3: Prepare Cover
- Cut the craft foam so that it can fold over the stack of the paper, plus a margin of about 0.5cm around the edges.
- Placing the paper on the foam, mark where the holes should go. Make the holes using the hole punch.
- If you want to add embellishments to the book cover, cut and glue them on. (I added two pieces of a darker colour foam to re-enforce the holes, plus I thought it would look nice.)
Step 4: Paracord Binding
- Cut about a foot of paracord.
- Feed it through both of the holes starting from the back cover, through the paper and then through the front cover.
- The strands emerging from each hole in the front should be the same length.
Step 5: Knotting the Paracord
Note: You could also try other knots here like a button knot or monkey fist knot .
- Take one cord and tie an overhand knot.
- Wrap the loose end of the cord three more times through the loop of the knot.
- Tighten the knot.
- Take the other cord and pull it tight so that the first knot is flush against the book cover.
- Repeat the same knot as above, and tighten the knot.
- Make sure that the finished knots are flush against the book cover.
- Cut off the excess cord at the end of the knot and melt the end to prevent fraying.
Step 6: Bookmark: Preparing the Paracord
Take a piece of paracord approximately 9ft long and pull out the threads inside the cord so that it is hollow, this will make the bookmark less thick.
Step 7: Bookmark: Lucky Knot
The bookmark is made from a decorative chinese knot called the 'Good Luck" knot and a series of half hitch knots. Start with the Good Luck knot by folding the cord in half, this makes the top loop of the diagram below, then make two more loops one on each side of the centre loop. Fold each loop over counterclockwise, notice in the diagram below whether the it should weave over or under. Pull the loops tight and fold over clockwise again noting from the diagram below at which point it should weave over or under. Pull the loops tight forming the knot.
Step 8: Bookmark: Half Hitch
I used the half hitch for the rest of the length of the book mark. See diagram below to make the half hitch knot. Repeat until the bookmark is the desired length.
Step 9: Bookmark: Attaching to Book
When the bookmark is long enough tie it to the top binding cord on the inside back cover.