Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Easy DIY Bound Journal

I love book binding, but let's be real, some of the traditional methods can take forever.  Recently I discovered something awesome about one of my favorite products....It works PERFECTLY for quick book binding projects because it's flexible and clear when it dries.  Can you guess what I'm talking about?  The best thing about these journals is that you can use vinyl OR leather and embellish them any way you want.  I painted my edges with metallic gold, but you could embellish with a brass bird or gems.  Just remember to have fun, make journals and don't forget to Make Your Mark!
xoxo, Mark 

I used the Americana Decoupage Papers for my end papers.....because they
are beautiful!
See how easy they are to make here
Stuff You'll Need
Sewing machine
Americana Decoupage Paper (decorative paper)
11" x 17" vinyl or leather
Americana Stick On Stencils
Twine (that matches the vinyl)
Pinking shears
Office copy paper
1.  Trace a folded piece of copy paper on the inside edge of your vinyl
2. Move it over 1/2" and trace it again 
3.  Add 3" more and then 1/2" all the way around
4.  Cut it out with pinking shears
*This is the cover (with flap) and it will be about 14 1/2" x 9 1/2"
5.  Edge the vinyl with metallic gold using a dry brush technique
*This will give it an aged and gilded look
6.  Stencil on the cover with more metallic gold lightly dabbing with a dauber
7.  Cut decoupage papers to 8 1/2" x 11" and create a stack of copy paper with the decorative paper on top
8.  Draw a line down the center and stitch the pages together
9.  Make about 8 - 10 stacks and fold them on the stitch line
10.  Clip them together and add a generous amount of E-6000 glue to the folded edges
11.  Secure them in place while they dry
12.  Clip a small hole in the flap and add a long piece of twine for a tie


  1. I have to say that while I do enjoy actual book binding, this is pretty genius! :)

  2. Thanks Katie! I love the traditional methods, but this works so well, I use it for my travel journals and to get rid of extra papers that I don't know what to do with. :)

  3. This is a neat idea for using paper. I have some thin pages that I wasn't sure how to use.

    1. The thin pages are easy to sew and they look great. That's why I like the Americana paper so much. Thanks for the comment Danielle!

  4. So in LOVE with this project You are truly an awesome talent, Mark. T takes skill to make something SO beautiful accessible to others. 💜💚❤💖

  5. I would love to give this a try. A macaron themed with a macaron fabric, which am still trying to find. ❤❤❤❤

  6. I love giving these journals to new mothers to record their baby's progress along with pictures. I also give them to my friends with school age children to fill up during the year to send to the grandparents at Christmas. Your journals will make my job so much easier. Thanks so much for the lesson!

  7. Replies
    1. Hi Diane, for my project I used vinyl.....I had tons of it and I liked the way it looked.

  8. OMGosh!! Another brilliant idea Mark! I have a load of scrap vinyl pieces and couldn't figure out what the heck to do with them... until now. Awesome project Mark! Thanks once again! (smile)

  9. Oh Mark, Mark, Mark, Mark, Mark (shaking head) Why or why must you give me such awesome ideas?!? I love this!! Thank you for being so brilliant! Love ya' Patricia B

  10. OMG! Luv it! Simple yet effective--I'm thinking of how you could use recycled papers for the pages and clear vinyl for the wraparound cover. You are a smart cookie!!!

    1. That would look amazing Jane! :) Make sure to share if you make one. I'd love to see it.