Thursday, June 3, 2010

Make-your-own Designer Spiral Notebooks

I love paper and stationery supplies. You knew that already, didn't you? When I was a kid, I loved to shop for school supplies. In fact, I'd buy stationery items with my allowance money even when I had more paper than I knew what to do with at home.

Well, I still love paper and school supplies. One thing I snatch up during the back-to-school sales are the spiral-bound notebooks when they're anywhere from FREE to $0.10 each. I've made lots of gift notebooks before, but I have one to share with you today that's even easier than those! Hold onto your wallets because I think you're really going to like this idea ...

How about using a decorative file folder as the cover?? I'm not sure why I never thought of this before, but I am in love with the concept. You can have spiral-bound notebooks that look like something out of a high-end stationery catalog, and only you will know that you made them yourself.

To make it, first you need to measure your notebook. Most spiral notebooks are a standard 8" x 10-1/2", but measure yours to be safe. Then cut your file folder to the correct size, centering your design as necessary.

Carefully take the coil off the notebook (loosen the wire ends and rotate the whole wire until it's completely off). Line up the file folder with the cover of the notebook and use a Crop-a-Dile to punch holes where the cover has holes.

Now this is where it's really easy. You don't have to cover it with Contact paper; file folders are made to be pretty durable. You don't have to mount it onto anything else; it's plenty thick by itself. All you have to do at this point is ditch the old cover, line up the new cover with the inside pages, and put the coil back onto the notebook (reversing the process you did earlier). Once that's done, make sure you lock the wires back into place ... and that's it!

If you really want to get the most bang for your buck, choose file folders that have the design printed on both the front and back (as mine did), and you can get two decorative notebooks from one file folder (and two spiral notebooks, obviously).

Since I'm a math geek, let's do the math, shall we? Let's say you pick up a pack of 3 decorative file folders at Dollar Tree for $1. We'll assume they're the ones with the design printed on both sides. Then let's say you also pick up 6 spiral-bound notebooks for $0.10 each during the back-to-school sales. That means you've spent $1.60 for 6 notebooks, bringing your total to $0.27 each for a gorgeous notebook like this!

You really can't beat that price, but if you prefer not to make them yourself, this one is in my Etsy shop ... unless it's sold before you get to it. :)


Shore Girl said...

Another winner -- very pretty!