DIY Paper Notebook




About: I truly enjoy making things...

You can make a fully custom notebook in less than 15 minutes. All you need are a few basic tools and supplies. There are many ways to make a notebook but in my experience, this approach makes the most durable and versatile product. You can basically use any amount of pages and any material for the cover(provided that you are able to make holes for the stitching in the cover). Don't forget to make a beautiful and custom design on cover. :) See more here:

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Step 1: Supplies and Tools


  • cutting board
  • ruler
  • sharp utility knife
  • hammer
  • leather punch
  • needle


  • office paper for the pages
  • cardboard for the cover
  • string
  • paper tape(optional)

Once you have the tools and supplies you can start putting it together.

Step 2: Cut Paper to Size

Firstly you cut the paper in size. I am just cutting regular office A4(297x210) paper in half. Therefore once everything is folded over I have A6(148x105 mm) sized notebook which fits my pocket quite nicely and is big enough for sketching as well as taking notes.

You can obviously make the notebook any size you desire.

Step 3: Design Your Cover

Before you stitch the notebook together you can put your drawing, print or anything on the cover. We usually draw sketches with Indian ink. But this time I just made a quick signature with a calligraphy marker. The sky is the limit here.

Step 4: Punch Holes for Stitching

  1. Lineup pages with the cover.
  2. Markup the spots for the holes. Start 1 cm from the edge and set the holes 1 cm apart.
  3. Punch the holes through with a punch. What you need is basically a spike you can hit with a hammer. It is best to use something that will make for a circular hole(this will eliminate tearing).

Step 5: Stitching It Together

  1. Start stitching from the inside(at the bottom edge of the notebook) and leave few inches of the string at the beginning for making a knot.
  2. You are going to stitch all the way to the end and back to the beginning where tie a knot.

This makes for a nice, secure and very durable connection of the pages and cover.

Step 6: Paper Tape(optional)

Optionally you can cover the spine of the notebook with the paper tape as you can see on the pictures. This is not necessary but it gives a nice final touch to the design of the paper notebook. :D

Step 7: Cut the Excess Paper

Cut off the excess paper that will be sticking out in the middle of the notebook.

Step 8: You Are Done

You have a perfect notebook. Just the one that fits you the best. You can make exactly the size you want the number of pages you want and the design you want. By this method, you will get an original, convenient and very durable notebook. Thank you for reading this far... :)

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    10 Discussions


    Question 11 months ago on Step 6

    This is awsome 1st of all ,thank you soon much. I spend so much on field notes,that just fall apart in my back not only can I make my own I can make it any size any shape and design I want with any style paper it is absolutely fantastic. However, the only problem I seem to be having is I can't find what you called "paper tape"where should I look where can I get it and what exactly are you using? Thanks in advance! Keep up the great work!

    1 answer

    Answer 11 months ago

    Hi, thank you very much for the kind words... I have bought the paper tape at art supply store in my town. But I think that something like this: could be pretty similar. The tape is only a design feature though, so you don't really have to use it.
    When you make yours, please post a picture here, I would love to see the result...


    Question 1 year ago on Introduction

    This looks awesome and I definitely want to try it, but where did you find or what did you use for the cardboard cover? Does is have to be a certain thickness?

    1 answer

    Reply 1 year ago


    thank you. I used paper that is approximately three times thicker than regular office paper. However, you can basically use any thickness you want, provided that you are able to punch through the paper and fold it over in the end.


    1 year ago

    Nice little notebook ! I made one for myself.

    1 reply
    Anne Strauss

    1 year ago

    This looks good— I’m going to try it. I have one question: how did you do the stitching? If we start in the middle and go to the edge, won’t that leave a lot undone? Thanks.

    1 reply
    JindraSykoraAnne Strauss

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you. Well, it would leave a lot undone... Therefore you should start from the edge of the notebook. I know I did not make good enough job of explaining the stitching. I am gonna try to improve that section.

    Kink Jarfold

    1 year ago on Step 8

    Nicely done, Jindra. I'm constantly looking for handmade things like this to give as gifts. KJ

    Well Done.png
    1 reply
    JindraSykoraKink Jarfold

    Reply 1 year ago

    Thank you. These make a great gift, I have given them many times myself...