Handmade notebooks and blank books

Mostly just pictures here, though I’d love to do a little tutorial pretty soon on the foam covered journals.

Let me start, though, with my first ever hand-bound hardback book:

If I can find a better photo in the next few days I’ll swap it for this one.  It has 4 hand-sewn signatures bound between covers of illustration board covered in hand-made (not by me) black and blue paper from India. Not bad for my first try, though I haven’t yet been able to bring myself to write in it. Still . . . it’s a start.

Not too long ago I hit on making a moleskine-type book with a softer cover.  Second Child has a huge stack of sheets of craft foam, and it occurred to me that they’d be easy to cut and fold. So the covers of these two are quite flexible, with just enough body to protect the pages (80 pages per book). Each of these also has a moleskine-type pocket inside the back cover, and an elastic strip to hold the book shut.

The foam is ridiculously easy to cut into shapes with scissors (or to punch holes in–I used a fine gauge hole punch to detail the center of the sunflower and the eyes of the . . . hmm . . . bug? alien? robot?  I cut these out of large sheets of craft foam, but I’ve since discovered they also come in stacks of smaller sheets already exactly the right size for a little notebook. Making the text block is the hardest part–if you had several assembled at once you could just pop them inside the covers and you’d be all set.

The only caveat I have to offer about the foam bound books is that, although the texture of them is incredibly appealing to the eye and to the touch, the covers pick up dirt rather easily, and I haven’t found a great way to clean them. You might want to reserve these for use at your desk.

Or maybe you’re just neater than I am. That’s a distinct possibility.

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