Movie Flipbook You Can Make at the Office (No Drill or Workshop Tools Needed)




Introduction: Movie Flipbook You Can Make at the Office (No Drill or Workshop Tools Needed)

About: Alison Lewis is a fashion hound who loves technology and DIY. She is the producer of and the author of Switch Craft. Her work has been featured internationally and in such publications a...

Make a Flip Book from iHeartSwitch on Vimeo.


We had to make something for the Christmas exchange this year that was $10 and under. I looked to the cinema for inspiration, and found the flipbook. A flipbook is a stack of paper hinged at one side with "a series of pictures that vary gradually from one page to the next, so that when the pages are turned rapidly, the pictures appear to animate by simulating motion or some other change." (Wikipedia)


Many of the flipbooks from the early 1900's were promotional items or something cartoonists would make on their own or to sell. Today, you can still find these old flipbooks on eBay or at antique shops.
It's the perfect gift that blends old technologies with modern appliances. All you need is a video recorder**, a printer, and some leather and screws. You can see my flipbook video and learn how to make one yourself following the steps below. While my Flipbook was made for a Christmas present you can make one for any occasion.

Step 1: Materials and Tools

You will need the following:

  • Video Editor Software. You can use a simple one like iMovie or QuickTime Pro or a more advanced one like Final Cut. Here, I used QuickTime Pro.
  • Microsoft Word
  • Your digital movie. (I used a Flip Cam to make mine)
  • Color printer with lots of ink
  • 3-hole punch
  • #10, 1 1/4” Long Bolt and Nut
  • Small scrap of leather
  • Cardstock or cover weight paper
  • X-Acto Knife & straight edge

Step 2: Trim and Prepare Your Video

Open your digital video in your video editor software. Find a 5 to 6-second section you would like to use for your flipbook. Following the directions of your editor, trim your video down to this selection. Make sure to save it as a new movie so you don’t loose your original.

Step 3: Export Images From Your Video

Export your movie to a JPEG Image Sequence with an option of 10 Frames per Second. This will export about 90 to 120 images depending on the length of your movie (in QuickTime selecting File/Export does this). Make sure your images are exported with a numbered label, like 001, 002, 003, etc…. In QuickTime choose “Image Sequence” in the Export dialog box and select "options" to select the 10 Frames per second.

Step 4: Scale Your Images

Use an image editor such as PhotoShop, Preview, or Paint and scale ALL of your images to be 3” wide and 2.25” high with a resolution of 120 dpi (dots per inch). If you want a high photo quality image, you need to set your resolution to 300 dpi when scaling your images.

Step 5: Import Your Images Into the Template

Open the SWITCH Flipbook Word Template in Microsoft Word. Drag and drop all of your images in consecutively into the correct table cell (see image below). You should be able to fit 8 images per page, making a total of 15 pages. The leather binding will cover up the text and numbers.

In the last cell write whatever you would like for the cover of your flipbook. We said “Have some fun this holiday season!”

Step 6: Print and Cut Your Images

Print the pages on your home printer. Set the quality to best and use a thick card stock or photo paper.

Using an X-Acto knife and a straight edge, cut out the pages along the dotted lines. It is important that all the vertical edges are as even as you can make them. Stack them on their side to see where you may need to trim.

Remember, the numbers and text in the cell to the left of the image will be covered up with the leather binding later, so don’t worry about it right now.

Step 7: Make the Holes With a Hole Punch

Using a three-hole punch, move one of the punches over to adjust the spacing to fit your flipbook. Center two holes on the numbered side of your cut pages.

Step 8: Stack and Secure the Leather Binding

Stack all your cards together lining up the holes. Wrap a piece of leather around the top and bottom and glue into place. Cut any excess leather so it’s a nice fit.

Using your X-Acto Knife, punch holes in the top and bottom of the leather directly over the holes in the cards. Put the bolt through and tighten down the nut on the back side.




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    17 Discussions

    Very nice idea to make the flipbook!

    This page flipping chart seems very easy to make and can create very wonderful results. I wanna make one later.

    BTW, some other tools can also make it well, such as this:

     if you look up flip book printer its a free app that dose all the computer work for you and try to use at least 15 frames per second otherwise it might not look like a moving picture.  

    2 replies

    Ah ha, found the link to the flip book printer. Its for PC only, sorry MAC users.

    Make one for your boss or employees - when you want to introduce a new idea to them - sometimes it takes something totally different to catch their attention and this would do it.

    I saw another really nice tutorial online today for a flipbook and it has some great examples for animators. The tutorial is for Flash, inDesign, and Photoshop. It looks really good - they just need to add the brackets to hold it together well.

    Neat idea!  It would be good for a number of things, such as introducing a new baby to relatives.  I know my camera will make short video clips, I'm just not sure how.  I'll have to look in the instructions I have to find that.

     If the flipbook's right edge is angled with a curve, (steepest at the beginning and flattest at the end) the book will flip more consistently

     When my son went to a very anti technology camp last summer (no TV, video games, phones, or even digital cameras allowed) I sent him a flip book to give him a moving image fix. Since he had complained that he couldn't remember my face I shot a movie of myself (with a digital still camera) as I said a few words. If he flipped though the stack he could read my lips and decipher the secret message. After exporting my movie as a JPEG image sequence I imported it and formatted it with filemaker, rather than word. This way I didn't need to resize the pictures and it was easier to adjust the layout. I also didn't bother with the hole punch binding, I just used an oversized cloth pin style paper clip -- I shouldn't have been so lazy though, because eventually the pictures did scatter and the message was lost. Maybe for the best. He'd gotten the message, and it was a secret....

    1 reply

    Sounds sweet, and I am sure he remembers... just think of your flipbook as the "Mission Impossible" book - once the message is received, it self destructs and no one else can decipher it!

    You know, if you have a guillotine cutter at the office, there's a better way: once you've cut out all the pics, and they can all be the same size (edges flush with each other when you lay them on top of each other), hold the stack in a way that will allow you to hold it firmly, diagonally slanted upward while you guillotine slice the edges to allow you to flip it easier (in other words, slice all the edges so that they aren't flush with each other anymore).

    Sorry I didn't post a pic, but if you need a picture, just pm me or something and I'll find the time to make an example. I just can't right now.

    I like the idea of importing the movie into individual pictures, though. That's pretty smart. :D

    1 reply

    Nice flipbook!
    I always used to make doodle flipbooks using the corner of books :P

    This is a great idea and I might make this some time.
    Keep up the good work! 

    1 reply

    Lukaj2003. Thank you!  You can make one in an afternoon. When you do, send me the final. I'd love to see it.