Picture of Make a 100 page Notebook
I am so tired of looking for new notebook and never find exactly what I want. So I thought, why not make my own? This tutorial will show you how to make your own notebook using an old record album cover. It also teaches a sewn in bookbinding technique. It may be that you have all these materials at home or something comparable. I used what I had at home. Here is what you'll need:

1. An old record album cover or any other large sized cardstock or thin cardboard. (manilla folder works well, thank-you to commenters below)
2. Paper. This could be blank, lined, grapned, colored or anything else you'd like. For this specific project I used blank 8 1/2 x 14 copy paper, otherwise known as legal sized paper.
3. Thread that won't break, like embroidery thread. (it also must be a cotton, otherwise it will tend to cut the paper and through the binding holes. 100% cotton yarn works great as well, but you'll have to make the holes a couple times larger for binding.
4. Embroidery needle or other thick sized needle that will hold embroidery or bookbinding thread.
5. Thumb tack.
6. Ruler.
7. Pencil.
8. Large paper clips.
9. Butter knife or bone folder.
10. A paper-cutter or really good pair of scissors or a really sharp xacto knife or a box-cutter.

Optional materials:
-clear packing tape
-colored paper
-glue stick
-large bead
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What S.I.unit did you do these measurements with? Centimeter or inches? If you did it in inches, can you add in centimeter measurements? In the place I live, people rarely use inches so I'm not really familiar with it and don't have a ruler that measures with inches. Please? It'll mean a lot to me.
SparkySolar9 months ago

I always wanted to know how do make booksThanks

Liz_W6 years ago
You could also add a section of tape or ribbon in a contrasting colour along the spine to cover the stitching.
a021386 years ago
wicked instructable...book binding always intimidated me slightly but this was super easy. i've also heard you can use dental floss in lieu of book binding/thick thread...i plan on giving this a go once i run out of the thread i've borrowed, but has anyone had any luck/experience with this?
Sweet Idea, I cant wait to try it!
amelia829 years ago
I modified mine by making an elastic band around it--(elastic was $0.81 for a yard--too bad they only had black or white). You can see the way I did it in the pictures, but I'm sure its not the only way. I also didn't make it full size because I wanted a certain part of the record cover on the front, and it happened to be on the right front. I just cut the paper down.
Hahaha, thank you so much for giving other people the idea to use Herb Albert. I work in a used bookstore and we absolutely drown in his records. :P
JuCo amelia827 years ago
hahahaha... you have... or had that album?
chebang (author)  amelia829 years ago
this is awesome. I am totally going to get that elastic next time. that record cover is awesome.
one4all7 years ago
handmade papers and productshandmade paper suppliershi, this is cool well i would like to get more information on handmade paper suppliers it has all kind of details regarding handmade papers and products from india and all over the world
This is so cool!!! I've always wanted a nicely bound, hand made note book, but they are all way too expensive! thanks so much!
Rowan138 years ago
Very nice! I will be trying this this the next time I need a new diary. I've been using acco folders & covers with 8 1/2x11 plain typing paper, but the metal acco clips eventually rip out the punched holes in the paper and sometimes the metal clips give up and die. I'd think a sewn book would be a bit more durable. (Especially as the diaries are something I keep basically forever.) Thanks for a good instructable!
trebuchet039 years ago
if only I could do this with engineering paper... those pads come apart with little force :/ I guess it has not bothered me enough to do anything about it :P Score: A --- well documented and a pretty good idea
chebang (author)  trebuchet038 years ago
thanks. is engineering paper really thin?
Not really... It's got a different rule. The back has a grid and the front just has margin and title areas. But, because of the back grid -- you can see the grid lines through the front to keep everything tidy and pro looking. It's yellowish paper, so when you photocopy, you don't see the grid lines and, depending on the machine, the photo copy is white - not yellow :)

Here's http://www.utdallas.edu/~cantrell/ee4301/epaper.gif a terrible gif image of the front of a sheet :p
Engineering paper is SOOOOO pleasing to look at and use...... You could make notebooks of engineering paper, I guess it would depend on what you want it for. Fold it in half, sew it together, and it would make great notebooks and journals.
Sherri57628 years ago
Good job! I got it in my head I wanted to make books the other day and I have checked out books from the library, and scanned the internet and was still confused. This looks so easy the way you explain it!! Thank you. I can't wait to start.
gforcerocks8 years ago
me like it me want one me make one
Good thinking and a good idea.
SirGrok9 years ago
Could you do this with a manilla folder? That would be a very cheap way to do this bulk. That plus a visit to your local office to grab some paper, and then a visit to your fishing tacklebox for some cord. I prefer writing on nonlined paper, especially seeing as I am an Engineering major... Calculus doesn't fit within the lines. And Polymath, I think that the motivation behind this project wasn't money saving, but instead a drive to have what he wanted.
stuboo SirGrok9 years ago
I created a little web app that generates Cornell-Style note pages. http://eleven21.com/notetaker

As it turns out, another engineering student (named Ted) asked me to make the app generate horizonal lines on the front and vertical lines on the back so that when you need graph paper, you can actually see it through the paper. It's and old school technique but it's rad. If you want to try it out, just click "Do it up Ted Style"

As the application is written, it wouldn't work well with the folding that you're doing in this instructable - but it's nothing a bit of creative photocopying couldnt take care of rather quickly.

Nice work.
ionix stuboo8 years ago
awesome... will come in handy...thanks
chebang (author)  stuboo9 years ago
I love those pages. I already printed them out. thanks so much.
chebang (author)  SirGrok9 years ago
all your modifications of would work great, except for the fishing line. It's too sharp and would cut your paper and binding holes. (I added this fact and the manilla folder option to the tutorial.) Also, it would be really hard to sew the booklets in tight, so they would be very loose in the notebook. Any cotton thread works great.
mikesty SirGrok9 years ago
Manilla folder + good stapling will accomplish this.
chebang (author)  mikesty9 years ago
Yes, this is true, but then it would not be the type of bookbinding I give the tutorial for. It would also not be the type of aesthetic I wanted for this particular notebook.
PackRat44488 years ago
can i use lined paper with holes? Y / N
AuntBee8 years ago
This is cool. My son is an artist so I'll try to make him one (or more) using handmade papers, etc. I am an avid scrapbooker and card maker, so I will use some of the embellishments I have on hand for those hobbies to fancy up a book for myself. COOL! Thx 4 sharing.
red thread8 years ago
this is super easy and fun....thanks! i will definitely be using the technique and modifying much! oh yeah, and is there a good method for accomplishing this with 8 1/2 by 11 paper without simply making the whole thing smaller? i wanted a notebook with sheets of graph paper but only had standard notebook sized available....any suggestions? (and i realize i could just staple it or tie it or something, but i am asking for any suggestions using this particular technique)...thanks!
meibao8 years ago
I did something similar but I used staples instead of sewing them, made my own diary.
peterrus8 years ago
Gonna make one right away!
And this is what it became.
FR35H8 years ago
Pretty neato (lol) seriously I'm def going to make one of these great idea keep em' coming!
marissa9 years ago
which wayy do you fold the paper?
chebang (author)  marissa8 years ago
i'm not sure what you mean. it doesn't matter, as long as it fits nicely in the cover
cl0ney9 years ago
Thanks for the post... Very cool indeed. I thought you might be interested to know that what you call a "booklet" is technically called a "signature." It's the little folded sections of paper inside of a thread-bound book.
Coleman!9 years ago
is the reason your folios are so far apart because the cardboard can't stand for them to be closer? because i think a few strips of gaffer's tape on the inside(or outside..decorative!) could fix that right up.
chebang (author)  Coleman!9 years ago
Excellent suggestion. I'll do that next time. I didn't even think about this.
polymath9 years ago
How much did the copy paper cost or did you liberate it? I like the idea of having your own personalized note book but I don't see any cost savings when you add up time and material.
chebang (author)  polymath9 years ago
i understand. edited. i already had all these things on hand. i figured most people reading this would have comparable materials at home, so they wouldn't have to go out and by anything.
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