hand made journal

Let`s face it: We`re all obsessed with notebooks. And I imagine I`m not the only one who has quite a few non-muji notebooks flying around that have only been used a very little… So here we go, this is how I recycle old, barely used notebooks into cute and ready to use ones! This is my first masterpost, please be kind :)

You will need: Mentioned old notebook, white paper/cartboard (not too thick), a pencil & an eraser, whatever decorations you want (stickers, patterned paper, pens, washi tape, …), scissors, glue (not pictured, sorry), a ruler, and very importantly large and see-through tape!

Step 1: Take your notebook and rip out all the used pages, if you wrote with a pencil you can also erase it.

Step 2: Now get rid of the cover, try to rip it off in a realtively neat way. (If you ripped out the first page it should be easier!) After that you work with the “inside”, the pages only.

Step 3: Now we`re going to make a new, white cover. (If you want another colour for the base, go for it.) Grab your paper/cartboard and draw the outline of your notebook. It`s very uselful to add a few centimetres on each side, it`ll make the glue-part much easier. Cut that out and just use your own eyes to determine the right length.

Step 4: It`s time for the gluuee! Glue the first and the last page of your “notebook” to the cut out cover. Fold the edges towards the insides so that the rims are smooth and it doesn`t look cut out on the outsides (as shown in the second picture). After that you should have a simple, white notebook.

Step 5: Decorating. Just let your creativity do whatever floats your boat. One suggestion though: If the white paper you used is quite thin then it`s better to use cartboard or thick paper to glue over it so you get more stability. (I used patterned cartboard and drew these little plant/glasses/coffee icons.)

Step 6: This is the last step, my friend, you made it! However this is the most difficult one. To really make a long-lasting cover, we want to tape it all. (If you have, there is special transparent cover foil, but I assume most people don`t have that.) Take the tape, and very carefully start right on the edge of your front cover. Leave enough tape over and beneath the actual cover to tape the inside: To make it look neater, you can take the next page and tape it all together. Repeat this progress so ever bit of your cover is covered and stuck together with the insides.

There we go! Above you can see the two notebooks I made in the last two days, one takes me 1-2 hours. The way I do it is pretty simple, you could spice it up by using the old cover as a base, by adding buttons, strings, whatever… I hope this helped a little, no more barely used old notebooks!


Henna on Handmade Paper

A test run of henna paste on some of my handmade paper turns out pretty well. This page was pretty ‘furry’, so the paste didn’t come off super cleanly. But most of the other paper I’ve got should work much better. I’m mainly using paper from @emmalucillepercy (Etsy & Instagram), and she uses all different fibers, so I’m excited to see how the stain varies from paper to paper.

These should make for some gorgeous journal covers. -7/8/17

So since my moleskine is already almost full I started looking for a new journal. My goal was to find one with black pages, a hard cover and an elastic similar to my old journal. 

But apparently, finding a nice looking journal with black pages was near impossible, so I decided to make my own! 

I followed THIS tutorial on book binding (I mixed it with several of her tutorials, all of which were really great) and bought the black paper from amazon (because the only paper I could find in stores was always card-stock type paper that was way too heavy). 

Most of the other supplies were really easy to find or I already had them. I did have fun building my own book press… 

I learned so much from doing this and I definitely want to try it again! 

Has anyone else ever tried binding their own journals? 


I finished my “Game Changer”/Duct Tape Journal! It ended up being 112 pages. I really enjoyed using this journal and I don’t think I’m going back to store-bought notebooks any time soon. I’ve actually just bought some supplies to try out bookbinding, I’m excited to see what happens with that!

View what the book looked like just after I made it.