Today’s tutorial is super simple and, that’s a promise, can be master by anyone! Some of you asked me questions about the notebook cover tutorial and told me that they didn’t feel they can do it themselves… So this second tutorial is much easier: leather but no stitches, paper but no binding skills required. Ready?
I said a few words about it in my last post, I always carry a tiny notepad in my purse to jot down any idea of task that might pop up in my head when I’m out and about. This notepad is far less tidy than any of my other notebooks, and I regularly tear out pages from it, especially grocery lists.
From now, I used to have an ugly spiral bound notepad which was a conference freebie, before I treated myself with something more fancy. In spite of its cuteness, I’m not satisfied with it: the notepad is pretty, but the pages fill up super fast with all my scribbles and at the cost of 3€ per notepad, I’ll be out of budget in no time.
A leather notepad
My crafty self started then to think about an affordable yet fancy DIY notepad: some paper + some leather + some brass = a refillable DIY notepad that can be used on both sides of the paper.
The concept is pretty simple: I used paper from a cheap notepad that I dismantled and covered with some leather. The main advantage to use some pre-cut paper from an existing notepad is that I can cleanly tear out pages (which is very satisfying for my inner perfectionist). The cover itself is a simple folded leather sheet, holding the paper thanks to binding screws.
So there’s no need to know how to sew to follow this tutorial, the supplies needed list is super short and you can craft your very own leather notepad for less than 8€! This budget includes a cheap notepad as a source of paper, but you can lower the budget using some scrap paper you have at home.
Just like I did with the notebook cover tutorial, I designed a step by step guide to help you craft your own leather notepad. And to make things easier, templates are provided in the tutorial file (last page) to cut the leather and the paper sheets accurately, in the case you would like to make your refill from scrap paper.
Archiving your notepad
Once all the pages are filled, the binding system makes the notebook archiving easy, before putting a brand new refill in your notepad.
You can of course use binding screws to keep the sheets together, but it’s cheaper to use brass fastener for this purpose. I had totally forgot about these tiny supplies for long ago until I started to work on the archiving issue for this project. I visited loads of stationery stores before I had the big reveal at the supermarket, finding these underestimated brass fasteners!
Archiving the filled sheets of your notepad is easy as pie:
1- Cut in cardboard or heavy paper 2 sheets the size of your notepad sheets (if you have followed this tutorial, it means 8,5×12 cm)
2- Punch holes in the alignment of the sheets’ ones
3- Fasten the cardboard (one sheet on the top and one at the bottom of the stack of paper) and the sheets together with the brass fasteners
4- (Option) Label your archive to find content easier when looking for some information
Who’s going for it?