Introduction: Concertina Sketchbooks

About: I am an Art and Photography teacher currently based in Dubai. Previously I have worked in Hong Kong and the UK.

Welcome to an instructable on creating Concertina Sketchbooks!

Concertina sketchbooks use one basic fold to create an interesting layout which can be used for a variety of different purposes.

In this example, some of my students have used them to document their photography work over the course of a term.

If at any stage you are confused, try following the video. For similar instructables, have a look at my YouTube channel: Mr. Art and Photography


To create an Concertina Sketchbook you need the following;

A minimum of two pieces of paper (the same size), you can use as many as you like, the more you use the bigger it is!

Stick or PVA Glue

Scissors or a ruler

Step 1: Step 1: Fold the Paper to Create Thin Rectangles

The first step is to take your paper and fold it in half to create thinner rectangular pieces.

Be sure to smooth along the crease to improve the fold.

Step 2: Step 2: Cut or Tear the Paper

Next, open your pieces of paper back to their original shape.

Using scissors or a ruler, tear along the crease to separate the page into two pieces along the fold you have made.

Hint: Tear slowly at first to ensure that the pieces do not rip. I have found a metal ruler works best for this method.

Step 3: Step 3: Fold the Pieces in Half

Lay out all your pieces.

Fold these in half vertically. Be sure to smooth along the crease which is created.

Step 4: Step 4: Prepare to Stick the Pieces Together.

Stand the pieces of paper up, ensuring the folds all face the same direction, as seen in the first image.

You will then alternate the pieces so the folds face either towards you, or away from you, as seen in the second image. This will create a elongated 'W' or 'M' pattern.

Step 5: Step 5: Stick Your Book Together

Now the pieces of paper are facing opposing directions, use PVA or stick glue to stick them together, ensuring you maintain the 'W' or 'M' pattern.

Step 6: (Optional) Step 6: Add a Front and Back Cover.

Well done! You have completed your first concertina sketchbook!

I would recommend cutting a square piece of hard cardboard or similar to stick to the front and back covers to make this stronger, but it is not essential. Good luck!

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