Wednesday, March 31, 2010

lunch sack book with pocket pages

This is my made up book called: lunch sack book with pocket pages. It's a cute, fun book for note taking and can store papers or whatever you would like in the pocket pages created from the use of lunch sacks. Also, it's fun to add a button on the cover and string to keep it closed so things won't fall out of the pockets, enjoy!


{inside front}

{inside pages}

{pocket pages}

This book is very fun to make with simple instructions:

1. buy some brown lunch sacks (or brown wax paper) and create a signature with 6-9 sacks.

2. cut the cover paper to the exact size of the brown lunch sacks for the outside of the signature. (so you will create one signature with the cover paper and all of the 6-9 sacks together.)

3. poke 3 holes through the whole signature (including cover page) where you would like.

4. start from the valley of the top hole of the signature and go up to the mountain with your thread.

5. from the mountain, go down into the valley in the second hole.

6. from the valley, go up into the mountain in the third hole.

7. from the mountain, go back down into the valley in the second hole.

8. tie the excess thread from the first hole and the thread you used to to go back through the second hole, tie a knot.

9. for the button, just sew the button where ever you would like on the cover and leave enough string on the end to be able to wrap around the whole book and the button.

and there you have a cute lunch sack book with pocket pages!

created by: {b}ridgette {p}eterson

Saturday, March 20, 2010

dos-y-do book

So this book is pretty simple. It is essentially two books put together, and therefore one difficulty is that it is the same amount of work as making two books. You can do any binding; I did a cord and case to demonstrate this idea. Making the text blocks is the same as usual, but as you go to attach the covers, attach them facing opposite directions to make the dos-y-do book. The outside covers need to be around 1/8th of an inch longer than the center board so that all of the covers line up. And that is pretty much it!
Emily Davis

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Stand Up Coptic Book

I made this book to use as a recipe book, but I am sure you could think of other reasons to make this book as well.
The first step is to make a Coptic bound book. Cover the book boards first, just like you normally would and sew in the signatures. If you want the book to stay open it is best if you just put one sheet in each signature, this means you need to be extra careful when sewing not to pull to tight because the paper can rip. Here are the instructions to sew a Coptic stitch using 2 needles. You can use this stitch or any other Coptic stitch you want.

Now that you have the book ready you will need another piece of book board to use as a stand. On one end cut out a an indent halfway through the book board as thick as a book board. This is where the cover will rest when the book is in standing position. Then cover the book board with book cloth and attach it to to the back cover of the book. Leave a 1/4 inch space for the hinge.
The last step is to attach an elastic band to the back of the book cover. Measure where you want it to be. Punch holes, and pull the ends of the elastic through to the inside of the cover. Glue down and cover with end paper.
An easier version if you have single sheets or recipe card is to use binder rings bind the book instead of sewing the coptic. You just punch holes through all the recipe cards and insert binder rings.

Good Luck! ---Alissa Empey

flag binding

• 2 pieces of book board (front and back covers)
• 2 pieces of cover paper (1.5” bigger than the book board for both length and width)
• 2 pieces of coordinating end papers (.25” smaller than the book board for both length and width)
• 1 strip of paper (.25” shorter than the book board)
• Pieces of small paper used for flags (no longer than the book)
• Adhesive

1. Glue a piece of book board in the center of one of the larger pieces of paper for both the front cover. Repeat for the back cover.
2. Cut off the corners of the paper at a 45 degree angle (about 1.5 times the thickness of the book board). Do this for all of the corners on both covers.
3. Score along the fold lines of the side flaps with a bone folder. Then glue the flaps down. (glue the two sides across from each other first, and then the other two sides across from each other last) Do the same for both covers.
4. Take the long strip of and score a vertical fold line every .5" though 1” along the length. Fold the strip of paper accordion style until you form the spine of the album making an even number of spaces.
5. Glue the spine to the centered inside edge of the front cover. Then attach the other side of the spine to the other inside edge of the other cover.
6. Take one of the small end papers and glue it to the inside of the front cover, over the spine. Repeat for both covers.
7. Stick your pages to the spine. The pages on the top and the bottom will be attached to the left sides of each accordion fold.
8. The middle pages will be attached to the right side of each accordion fold.
9. Attach all the pages or flags until you have used all of them.
10. Enjoy.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Piano Hinge Book

1. Fold Signatures

2. Make identical cuts in all signatures, according to size of stick or ribbon that will be weaved through the openings you are making. Triangular shapes can be cut out as well so the sticks or ribbon can be seen.

3. Fold all first tabs one way, the next tabs the opposite way, and so on until all are folded.

4. Place stick or ribbon through tabs of 1st and 2nd signatures bent towards each other.

5. Continue until all signatures are combined.

6. Glue ribbon all around all tabs for stability.

7. Glue 1st and last page to inside of decorated covers.

8. Glue end papers on.

Rebekah Davis

Secret Compartment Book

Secret Compartment Book

First off, you’ll want to get a book, (you are going to mutilate a book, so make it one that won’t make you squeamish about destroying.) I recommend the D.I. for used hard cover books. You may want to choose the book with the recipient in mind - Dad may appreciate a book safe made from an old car manual or history book, while Mom would prefer to stash her cash in a sewing book or romance novel. If placed on a shelf with similar books, the altered book safe will fit right in and no one will ever guess its true purpose. (Although, this is not necessary, it makes it more fun!)

What you will need.

Hard cover book of sufficient size, to allow a cut-out of 1" or deeper, depending on your desired outcome
Exacto knife or surgical blade
Non-fraying fabric or felt for lining (optional, you can leave it bear.)
Strong craft glue, book glue, or Mod Podge.
Scrap cardboard


Exacto knifes or other blades can be very sharp. Even though the instructions for this craft are relatively easy, it does involve deep cutting with a knife and may be dangerous for some people to do.

1. If your book has a paper cover, remove it and replace it when you are finished making the secret book.

2. Open the book and decide how deep and how large you want the hollow opening. Measure and mark the width and height of this rectangle on a page that is at the depth that you have chosen, measuring the depth from the inside of the back cover. The cut side near the center of the book should be far enough from the center to allow use of the ruler as a straight edge for cutting; usually this means at least a ruler width away from the centerline. (I didn’t do this, and trust me… it gets hard to cut strait without a rulers help!)

3. You may need to support the side of the open book that you are not cutting, so that the other pages lie flat as you work. You could use a rubber band to hold the loose pages to the front cover and away from your work area, or binder clips.

4. Begin cutting with the Exacto knife, using the ruler as a straight edge on each side of the rectangle, cutting down through about a 1/4" inch of pages. Take particular care with the corners to ensure each cut meets the cut that joins it. (The corners are crucial, and the hardest part of cutting, besides rounded sides.)

5. Remove the cut out rectangle that you just created and discard.

6. Lay down the pages that now have an opening cut in them, and draw around the inside of this rectangle, on the page directly below, so that you may repeat the cuts exactly. (When I did mine, the instructions were in a different process, you glues all the pages before you cut the whole, It seems that it’s easier to do it as directed here.)

7. Repeat steps 4 to 6 until you reach the back cover. Place a piece of scrap cardboard inside the back cover as you work on the last section, to avoid scoring or cutting the back cover with the knife. (That’s Smarts!!!)

8. Cut fabric or felt to fit the bottom of your rectangle (if desired). Measure the depth, and cut one or more strips of fabric to this size, with enough length to cover all four sides of the rectangle.

9. With glue, place enough glue in each corner of the rectangle and up the sides to secure the pages in place, forming your "book safe." This will be covered by your fabric lining.

10. Use glue to secure the side strips of fabric (again, the fabric is optional if your not doing a fabric lining, skip this step and the beginning of step 11) all around the rectangle; being careful that the fabric does not extend anywhere above the opening or the book will not close properly.

11. Finally, use glue to fasten down the bottom-lining fabric. Cut away any glue "strings" once the glue has dried, and close the book. If you have one, replace the paper book cover. Your secret book is now ready to hide money, valuables or keepsakes in. Enjoy!

(Just a note, the pages can be cut out any way you prefer, I just did mine different which is just fine! You can cut them individually, or you can bind them all together and then cut them. Or you can cut them in groups… just remember, for whatever way you decide to cut, go slow, and make sure that you cut the papers carefully on the corners. The slower you go with that step, the better the book will look!)

Hard Cover with Dowel Closures

1. Make a french sewn, coptic, or perfect bound text block.

2. Cut the book board the same as with a standard case bound book, but also cut an extra spine and one extra cover that is then cut along the vertical, 1/3 to 2/3.

3. Take a piece of text paper that is the same height as the text block and the same width, plus the width of the spine plus 1/4 to 1/2 an inch.

4. Glue the paper so that is covers the back of the text block, the spine, and a small overlap on to the front of the text block.

5. Cover one side of the top cover that is uncut.

6. Layout the remaining pieces of book board in the following order, left to right: the 2/3 top cover piece, spine, back cover, spine, 1/3 cover piece. Make sure to leave a 1/16 inch space between boards for hinges.

7. Glue all of the boards except for the 2/3 front cover on the left.

8. Measure for the locations of the dowels that will be used to close the book.

9. Cut out two strips of paper of book cloth to be used as the loops for the dowels
10. Make two slits in the paper or book cloth that are the same width as the papers cut to make the dowel loops.

11. Insert both ends of the strips from the front to the back. Use a dowel to get the right diameter for the loops if necessary.

12. Glue the strip ends to the inside of the cover material.

13. Glue the 2/3 board to paper or book cloth so that all pieces of book board are now connected, wrapping and gluing the left and right edges, but leaving the top and bottom edges unglued.

14. Glue the covered, whole top cover, covered side down, flush on top of the 2/3 cover so that one third remains uncovered.

15. Wrap the top and bottom edges and glue.

16. Glue a continuous end paper to the back side of the cover.

17. Glue the text block to the back cover section of the cover.

18. Insert dowels and close.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Book Carrying Case

You will need:

· A book (optional)

· Leather or another heavy material

o The sturdier the better. Technically, you can make this out of book board, rawhide, upholstery leather, clear table-top protector, etc. Experiment a little and leave a comment if you find success!

· Needle and heavy thread

· Something to pre-poke holes in leather (I used a thumbtack. A crop-a-dile or awl would work as well).

· Buttons (optional)

· Material for the strap

o If you don’t use the material you use for the rest of the case, like I did, you could try braiding some jute, hemp twine, etc. Something that will feel secure.

NOTE: This is how I did it. I made this up because I couldn’t find instructions anywhere. You can find an example of this case in the Special Collections room in the Mckay Library. It is easier to find if you ask for the Ethiopian Coptic book, but they might remember the case as well. It can also be found in the Bound and Lettered periodical, volume 8, part 2. It was done by Helen Widenhofer. Please don’t follow these as exact instructions, because they’re not.

1. I started with a book. You don’t have to, but I think it’s easier because often times when I make a book, I don’t know exactly what the measurements will be at the end. Measurements are important with this case, so I started with a book in mind.

2. Measure the book. We’ll say mine was 5” x 7” x 1”. I then made a template for the inner case on a large piece of cardboard (aka, pizza box), mapping out how the pieces fit together. Keep in mind the thickness of the material you are working with. I made mine 1/8” bigger on each side so I wouldn’t have to shove the book into the case when I was done, so it should measure at 5 ¼ x 7 ¼ x 1 ¼ “, and should look something like this:

Note: The flaps are decorative, in my opinion. I like them, but if you don’t, feel free to omit them. Also, I wasn't paying close enough attention when I made this the first time, so there aren't tabs with slits on my first case. I guess that means they're optional, but the original in the McKay has them, so whatever you want to do should work.

3. Cut the cardboard template out and assemble it. This will allow you to see if there are any major problems with the way it folds together and if your measurements were off. If they were off, FIX them, don’t just ignore and hope they go away. It’s better to cut out cardboard twice than leather. At this stage you can test to see if it is the right size by putting your book in the case. Adjust as necessary.

4. Once your template is good, trace it down on the wrong side of your leather or other material. Wrong side being whatever you want on the inside. Cut it out, being careful not to go too far with the cuts. I accidentally sliced my leather a little past the cut, not even going all the way through, and it later tore. Be careful.

5. Sew the buttons on (or whatever you want to use for pull tabs). The Ethiopian case had bits of leather sewn on as tabs. Have some fun with it, or even leave them off altogether.

6. Poke holes in the leather. I made mine ¼“ apart and about ¼” in along every edge that was 7 ¼”. The easiest way I found to do this was to place a piece of cardboard on the floor, fold my leather in half symmetrically, and poke holes with a thumbtack. This way I only had to poke 4 rows of holes versus poking 8 rows. Poking holes just makes it easier to get the needle through the leather.

7. Sew! I kept it pretty simple, but it feels sturdy. Don’t skimp on knots. I recommend not having a LOOOOOONNNNNNNGGGGG piece of thread because it will just get worn out from trying to go in and out of leather holes. I broke my thread once, so be aware. If you’re working with leather or another semi-soft material, it can be helpful to flip the material inside out sometimes.

8. Make the outside template. It will be larger than the last one because you still want to be keeping the thickness of the material in mind. I made mine another ¼” larger for each measurement. So now it will measure 7 ½” x 5 ½” x 1 ½”. Better to go too big than too small. The difference with the outside template is you will be subtracting a section of the 1 ½” side by the bottom. It should look something like this:

9. Repeat steps 2-7.

10. For the strap you can use any manner of long material. It should be sturdy. I used the same leather as my case for mine, but because the pieces were short I had to combine several for the proper length. The length is whatever is comfortable for you. Before you sew or tie it shut you obviously need to thread it through all the slits you cut. I made my strap slightly smaller than the slits on the case so it would be able to move. Sew or tie it shut when you’re done threading it through the slits, and you’re done! Congrats on your very own customized book carrying case!

Laurel Hoffman

If you have questions please email me at


How to Make a Traveler's or 'Moleskine' Journal

Chipboard, Scalpel(exacto knife), Bone Folder, Book Press, Book Binding Glue, Scissors/Rotary Blade for Leather, Leather/Faux Leather/Paper, Text Block of Desired Size bound (I use French stitched), Clips, rounded corner paper punch, Mull, Endpapers, Paper for inside pocket, elastic, acrylic paint (optional).

Step 1:
Put your bound text block in your book press and glue the spine, let dry. Glue spine again, this time gluing on the mull, let dry. Trim so the mull is flush on top and bottom of the text block, but has an inch or so left on either side of the text block.

Step 2:
Once, the mull has dried glue endpapers on the front and back of text block. Only brush on an 1/8 of an inch strip of glue so that the endpaper can isn't completely glue to the text block. Using a piece of scrap paper helps.
Step 3:
Now is the time to cut out the covers for the journal. Since this journal is flush on all sides, just measure the size of your text block and that will be the size of your covers. You can use the scalpel or a paper trimmer to cut the chipboard the size you want. I rounded the corner with my paper punch so it was rounded like my text block.

Step 4:
Measure the width of the spine of your text block. You might want to add an 1/8th of an inch to leave room for the pocket that will go in later. Then, I just used scrap paper to glue the two book covers together to keep the spine width consistant while gluing the cover on your paper/leather. (The picture will probably help explain it better.

Step 5:
Glue onto your paper/leather. I'm using paper because it's easier to show the next steps. Use your bone folder to help you smooth out the paper/leather onto the chipboard.
Step 6:
Glue down rounded corners by fraying the corners of the paper/leather and glue down so they mold around the corner. You may need to use your clips to help hold the paper/leather down until the glue dries.
Step 7:
Finish gluing down the rest of the edges. If using paper use the bone folder to score the paper so it's easier to glue down. Also use it to crease the spine so that it will open and close with ease.

Step 8:
The Elastic Closure:
It's really hard to find colored elastic (other than black and white) so I used acrylic paint. You can water it down a little bit so that it acts more like a dye and it will soak into the fibers of the elastic.
Cut slits into the back of the book cover and thread the elastic through. Make sure the size is right and it fits nicely around the book like you want it to before gluing it down.

Step 9:
Glue on the endpapers of the text block onto the inside of the cover (don't glue down the spine of the text block just the endpapers).
Use your bone folder, once again, to help smooth out and crease the endpapers where needed.
(Tip: don't worry about your elastic ends showing through the endpapers on the backside of the cover. The pocket for the book will cover it up. However, if your making one without a pocket, it is suggested that you used another piece of chipboard similar to the one you made for the outside cover, and glue that over the back cover. Then glue down the endpapers as usual. I haven't tried it though.)
Step 10:
The Pocket: I think that the pictures will do a better job explaining than I would, and hopefully they make sense.

Step 11: Glue in pocket so that the opening is facing the crease or inside of the book, but you can be really creative when putting the pocket so it's really up to you. But this is how the journal usually looks.
Once the pocket is in your done! And here's what it looks like finished. (Most traveler's or Moleskine journals are made of a faux leather not polka dotted paper just so you know).

Posted by: Angie Steggell
T TH 8:00-10:45 AM

Print Mat Book

Overview: This book is similar in concept to those folder photo holders you were given with your prom pictures. Since the book is primarily about the pages that hold pictures, there is no specific way to bind the book, which means you can choose to bind it anyway you like. I chose to do a French seam with a hard cover.

Materials: Heavy Paper, Scalpel, Ruler, Glue, your choice of binding materials and cover, and a pencil

To begin this book, choose your own size of paper depending on the size of photos you wish to include in your book. I used 12x12 inch cardstock sheets.

2. Fold your paper in half both ways to form an “x” with the folds.
3. Cut along one fold to the middle. You can also cut additional sections from this fold to create more space at the valley of your pages. I cut one inch strips from either side of the cut fold. (I later used these as spacers since the book gets thick quickly). The pictures show the cutting lines as dashed and the folding lines as solid.4. You should now have two flaps (A & B as shown in the image above). You can choose to fold both of them forward or one on each side depending on how you would like to arrange your photos. I folded one of mine forward and the other back.

5. On one of the flaps, measure how thick you would like the paper to frame the photo and draw lines that form the square you’ll cut out to let the picture show.6. Cut an “x” from the middle of the flap by connecting one inner corner of the square you drew to the inner corner opposite to it. This should leave you with four triangle tabs.

7. Fold these tabs back along the sides of the square you drew.8. Then fold the tabs back toward the center of the now empty square to fit around the picture you plan to place on the page. You then have to choice to cut the tabs so they don’t show through the picture window. I left the tabs since the picture will cover them anyway. 9. At this point you’ll also need to decide how you want to get the photos into the window. You can do this by leaving one side of the mat unglued to slide the picture in, or you can place the picture by fitting it through the window.
10. You’ll now glue down the tabs by folding the flap down on the uncut half of the paper. I also glued the edges to keep the halves lined up. Repeat these steps for each of your pages and bind how you wish.

-Jenica Sparks