Accordion Pocket Journal

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Introduction: Accordion Pocket Journal

These unique accordion journals are beautiful and easy to make! Once you have made your first book, you will easily be able to make more in less than one half-hour each. They make special gifts for family and friends!

Step 1: Supplies

  • One 11x17 sheet of paper.
  • Chipboard for the covers, at least big enough for two 3x4 inch rectangles (I used the back of an old notebook).
  • Decorative paper, at least big enough for two 4x5 inch rectangles (two sheets of paper from my previous instructable, Tin Can Papermaking, work great!)
  • Ribbon to match the decorative paper (about 20 inches).
  • A ruler.
  • A utility knife (scissors should work too).
  • A cutting mat.
  • A pencil.
  • Mod Podge (other craft glues should work too).
  • A paintbrush (to use for the glue).

Step 2: Cutting and Folding the Paper

Cut the 11x17 inch paper into three equal strips. They should be 17 inches long and almost 3 3/4 inches wide.

Next, lightly mark every 2 5/8 inches along the long edge. The last section should only be 1 inch long. Repeat this on the other 2 strips. Now, fold the paper on the lines as you would a fan, alternating mountain and valley folds. Once you have folded the three strips, you will need to trim the short end flaps. Cut all but 1/4 inch off the end flaps of two of the folded strips. On the third strip, cut off the entire end flap.

Step 3: Gluing the Pages

In this step, you will be gluing the three folded strips together. Glue the 1/4 inch end flaps to the edge without the end flap of the next strip. You should end up with one continuous folded strip. There should be no 1/4 inch flaps on either sides when you are done.

Step 4: Cutting Out the Covers

Cut two 2 7/8"x4" rectangles out of the chipboard, and two 3 7/8"x5" rectangles out of the decorative paper.

Cut a shallow groove the width and depth of the ribbon, across the center of one of the two chipboard rectangles, parallel to the short sides. Be careful, this can be a little difficult. The ribbon will sit inside the groove so that it does not create a bump.

Step 5: Gluing the Covers

Cut a length of ribbon about 20 inches long. Apply glue to the inside of the groove in the chipboard, and center the length of ribbon into the groove. Now, glue the pieces of chipboard to the center of the backside of the decorative paper (the piece with the ribbon should go ribbon side against the paper). Once the chipboard and decorative paper are glued together, you will need to cut the corners off of the decorative paper. Cut the corners off of the decorative paper at a 45-degree angle a little bit away from the corners of the chipboard (about 1 1/2 chipboard thicknesses). Now, fold the remaining 1/2 inch flaps on the short sides around the chipboard and glue them down. Before you glue the long flaps, cut a small slit, the width of the ribbon, right where the ribbon protrudes from the chipboard. Then, thread the ends of the ribbon through the slits. Don't cut slits on the piece without the ribbon. Now fold and glue the long flaps.

Step 6: Finishing the Book

Glue the last sections of the folded strip of paper to the backs of the covers (the sides that the decorative paper does not fully cover). Make sure that they are centered.

Step 7: Making It Your Own!

You can make your book any size or shape you want! Just make the chipboard covers 1/8 inch bigger than the pages on all sides, and the decorative paper 1/2 inch bigger than the chipboard on all sides. You can also leave out the ribbon. I recommend using Tin Can Papermaking for the cover paper, to add another home-made aspect. If you enjoyed this Instructable, please consider voting for it in the Paper Contest :)

Paper Contest

Runner Up in the
Paper Contest

3 People Made This Project!

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19 Comments

0
jeanniel1
jeanniel1

1 year ago

Simple and elegant. I love it and it can apply to any size! Good one!

0
TanyaH2
TanyaH2

1 year ago

I made two of these over 20 years ago and adore them. It is great to see an Instructable for them!

0
peytonmhemann
peytonmhemann

1 year ago

I was low on resources, so I messed around with tape (single- and double-sided), 8.5x11 printer paper, cardboard and a photocopy of an art assignment to make a rectangular and circular version of this project.

IMG_7458.png
0
ksmith3382
ksmith3382

Reply 1 year ago

did it work out?

0
peytonmhemann
peytonmhemann

Reply 1 year ago

Yeah, it did! I'm not sure why the picture didn't load, but both of the journals are beautiful.

0
ksmith3382
ksmith3382

1 year ago

Cool I have not tried it yet but soon to be

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StarRyder
StarRyder

Reply 1 year ago

No joke I am litarelly making it right now lol

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StarRyder
StarRyder

Reply 1 year ago

I know right? So amizing. You know what? I am gonna make it right now.

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snowf7
snowf7

1 year ago

You have my vote. This is a great project to get the kids involved. Very useful and a great gift that will be welcomed and appreciated.

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da Bulldog
da Bulldog

Reply 1 year ago

Thank you for your nice comment. I hope you will enjoy making the journal.

0
missshanks
missshanks

1 year ago

This is cool. I can't wait to make them with my granddaughters!

0
da Bulldog
da Bulldog

Reply 1 year ago

Thanks. Let me know how it turns out!

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Macaroni00
Macaroni00

1 year ago on Step 1

What a wonderful idea. They look beautiful. Excellent job!

0
da Bulldog
da Bulldog

Reply 1 year ago

Thanks ;)

0
QGurlCraft
QGurlCraft

1 year ago

so creative!

0
da Bulldog
da Bulldog

Reply 1 year ago

Thank you - glad you liked it!