In this Instructable you will receive instructions on how to construct a journal like the one pictured above which fits a Moleskine Classic Notebook, Large, Ruled, Black, Hard Cover (5 x 8.25). Basic leather working ability is assumed.
Step 1: Materials and Tools
For this Instructable you will need the following:
1: Some type of relatively thin flexible finished leather. i.e. 4 - 4.5 oz or 1.5 - 2 mm thick.
2: Waxed Thread
3: Stitching Needles
4: Awl (or fine hole punch)
5: Snap Setting Kit
6: Line 20 Snaps (2)
7: Stitch Space
8: Stitching Groover
9: Razor knife
10: Cutting Mat
11: Straight Edge
12: A Moleskine Classic Notebook, Large, Ruled, Black, Hard Cover (5 x 8.25)
Step 2: Cut List
This journal cover is constructed from only 2 pieces of leather. Make your cuts as neat as possible and make sure that the pieces are cut at 90 degree angles. An easy way to check that your piece is square is to measure from corner to corner and compare the two measurements. If they are the same then your piece of leather is square.
1: 19 1/2" / 8 5/8" (the body of the cover)
2: 8 5/8" / 1/2" (the restraining strap)
Step 3: Snaps, Part 1
On the left side of the leather you will set the snap studs at 5 1/4" from the side and 1 1/2" from the top and bottom with the crown on the finished side of the leather. Firmly set the studs and proceed.
On the other side of the leather, you will set the sockets at, 11/16" from the edge of the leather. HOWEVER, do not set the sockets yet, just mark where they will go. Now, fold the right finished side of the leather over 1 3/8" over and clamp in place so. Punch your holes on the marks you made through both pieces of leather and set the sockets in them. See pictures.
Step 4: Sewing the Pocket and the Cover Flap
With the unfinished side of the leather up, fold over the left side 3.5" and clamp in place. Sew the top, bottom and left edge to create a pocket with a hard edge. Make your stitches 1/8" from the edge of the leather. Hide the knot inside the pocket and securely tie.
On the right side, sew around the flap you made in the previous step on all four sides to secure it and provide a stable base for the sockets. This knot will be harder to conceal but you can hide it in the edges of the flap that was formed or, if you do not want a knot, stitch back over your stitches once or twice.
Step 5: Attaching the Strap
Now continue the stitching you began on the sides of the leather all the way around the top and bottom edge. This will be for aesthetic reasons only except where the strap is secured. Sew the strap on as is shown in the picture so it will hold the Moleskine in place on the right half. You have a bit of leeway here as to where exactly the strap is sewn on but, try to have it fall in the center of where the rear cover of the Moleskine would fall when it is open on the cover and even on the left side.
When finished the strap should appear as in the pictures above.
Step 6: Fitting in the Moleskin
Now all that is left is to insert the Moleskine into its cover. Begin on the left side and carefully tuck the front cover of the Moleskine into the pocket on the left side of the cover. The pocket will be quite tight so you may want to use a ruler to stretch it a bit first. Next, fold the Moleskine back on its spine and slide the rear cover under the strap on the right side. The cover will feel a bit stiff at first but the leather will stretch a bit with time.
And there you've got it, a hand made journal cover for you notebook.
I also want to give credit to The Rambler whose Instructable inspired me to create this one and where I got the idea for the pocket and strap method of securing the notebook. Please check out his awesome Instructable here
Hope you found this Instructable informative and easy to follow. If you have any questions, comments or critiques please leave a comment below. Thanks.