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In this instructable I'll show you how to add your own style to a cheap 3 ring binder. As you know school supplies can add up real fast and a store bought "stylized" binder costs way more then one of those cheap plastic ones. Of course the kids want the cool one. This is a great project to do with one of your kids and have some real fun.

Step 1: Tools & Materials

For this project you'll need:

1. Hot glue gun with glue of course (or your preferred adhesion method)

2. Cheap plastic 3 ring binder

3. 3 Bandanas or about a yard of choice fabric

4. 1 Blanket binding (found at fabric store for about $2)

5. Patience, especially if working with a kid... : )

Step 2: Covering the Binder

First you want to lay the bandana over the front of the binder. Trim the excess leaving about 2 inches on all sides. Glue the bandana to the face of the outside of the front cover. Then do the same for the back outside cover. Then open the binder and fold the edges over and glue to the inside covers.

Step 3: Cover the Inside of the Binder

Now your going to cut 2 pieces to fit either sides of the rings. You'll want them to be about a half inch smaller then the area being covered. Glue them onto the binder. Now, you could be finished at this point but we went ahead and used the black satin blanket trim to add a little extra.

Step 4: Cover the Binder Binding

I cut a piece of blanket binding to wrap all the way around the center column of the binder and overlap by about an inch. I folded over one end and glued it together so it wouldn't fray apart. Starting on the inside center of the binding I glued it all the way around until secure on all edges.

Step 5: Put the Edge On

I decided to do this all in one piece. Blanket trim usually comes in a 3 yard package which is more then enough. But if you decide on some other type of trim you'll have to measure your binder. I started by inserting the edge of the binder into the fold of the blanket binding. I first glued it to the inside of the binder all the way around. Then flipped over and did the outside. And that's how you customize your binder! Please be careful with the glue gun and kids with glue gun. We've learned the hard way.
That looks great! How does it hold up under the wear and tear of daily use?
We made one last year for my daughter and it held up for at least the school year and she's 10. So I'm sure it suffered some mild abuse. It may still be in her room shoved under the bed or something. : )

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