Spending an evening with a good book. A book I’m binding…

I’ve had an interest in binding my own journals for a long time. Today, I decided to indulge in the craft. I call it my regularjournal. Or maybe I call it my jeneskine. My jenalskine. A regularnal. My regularskine… Oh, whatever.

After an evening of work I rewarded myself with downloads from DIY Planner – where you’ll find a wealth of page templates for nearly every need – and proceeded to plan out my custom book. The DIY Planner site also caters heavily to the GTD and Hipster PDA crowd, so have a nose around if those things interest you. There are downloads scattered all around the site, so do investigate.

So I planned the book, printed a bunch of double-sided pages, and was ready for the next step. A quick Googling turned up several sites which detail instructions on how to hand bind a book. I settled on following this one mostly, and have improvised where necessary. This particular technique uses stitching and then a glued cover. I don’t have a proper book trimmer so I made do with a steel ruler and a utility knife to trim off the ‘creep’ that happens when you fold bunches of paper in half. I did all right and even went crazy and rounded the corners using a little punch I had on hand. I live on the wild side, donchaknow. Any ragged bits were easily smoothed using a nail file. (Tip: To avoid the paper edge going fuzzy, pinch the pages together firmly and gently sand it down in one direction only with the file.) Then, in a moment of crafty abandon, I built in a bookmark ribbon as an indulgent little touch. 😉


I know I haven’t told you how to stitch the bundles of paper (evidently called ‘signatures’) but that’s because the site I’ve linked to above explains it pretty well. I did take my thread out of the second signature once when learning where to place my next stitch, but overall stitch binding is a painless process and makes sense after you get going with it.

My little book is currently sandwiched between the coffee table and the heaviest books I have and I’m waiting for the glue of the spine to dry. I’m so tempted to check on it, but I’m afraid that if I do so that the cover won’t be stuck on yet… I’m so impatient in this sort of situation.

Anyway, the final book result will be revealed in another post here.

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