Make your own Notebook or Memo Pad

I’ve been working on my day job paperwork for the past week and a half.  Slogging away 8 to 10 hours a day on it, then had a couple days off for a quick trip to Colorado and then back at it once again.  I’m playing “Hookie” from my paperwork right now.

Before we head back out to my day job I have to make a memo pad for Joe and two mileage diaries for our work.  Since I’m at a point where I can work just in the mornings and then play in the afternoons today was a good day to get started on these projects.

All three of the items I need to make are Hard Cover Books.  The first I’m going to work on is a memo pad that will fit in Joe’s shirt pocket.  I made one before but it is too wide for the pocket and I need to remake the covers only.

Hard cover memo book

This one is too wide and he has been begging me to fix it for him.

His old one is really well worn.

Worn front cover

The old front cover had a couple of stamped sentiments in the white labeled areas.  The stamping has worn away and the Stampin’ Up! paper I used is just about worn off.

Worn out back cover

The back cover is even worse.  Once again, it is Stampin’ Up! paper and hasn’t held up very well to being sweated on, taken out and put back into his shirt pocket.  You can see the printing on a box I cut up to use on this older project.

Joe uses both sides of the paper

Over the last couple of years he’s got a lot of use out of this note pad.  He uses both sides of the paper and there is only one page left blank, and only the back side of the one page.  Time to make a new one.

This is really simple to do.   The size you make them is up to you.  You can use school notebook paper if that is all you have on hand.  The amount of pages you want in your book is up to you as well.  We buy the 8-1/2 x 11 legal pads from our office supply place.  I like the white pads better than the yellow ones but use what you want.

8-1/2 x 11 legal pads

In making mine I cut away the top margin, which is blank, and I cut away the left margin with the red line running down.  This choice is up to you.  My way isn’t the “right” way it is just my way.

How many pages you want in your book is up to you as well.  I have used an entire pad and cut the paper to 3-1/2″ x 6-1/2″.

3-1/2 inches wide

6-1/2 inches long

You can use the cardboard from the paper pad.  I’ve chosen to use a piece of 12″ x 12″ chipboard I purchased at my local scrapbook store.  I’ve measured and marked two columns 3-1/2 inches wide (3-1/2 and 7).  Then I measured down and marked the two columns at 6-1/2 inches.  This is a fantastic recycling project.  If you have cereal boxes you are saving for a future project this would be a good time to use some of it.

Meausre and mark your chipboard to the size you will need

The best paper to use to cover the chipboard with is a heavy weight card stock.  Although the Stampin’ Up! Designer Series Paper I used on Joe’s old notebook looked really good when it was first made, the thinner paper does not hold up well in the long run.

The paper I have chosen to use is Graphic 45’s Communique.  I like the graphics on the paper and the back side of the piece I have chosen is RED, which is Joe’s favorite color.

I’ve cut a piece of the 12 x 12 paper to 4-1/2 x 7-1/2.  I have added one inch to the width of the chipboard I have cut.  This will give me about a 1/2 inch to wrap around the chipboard.

Cut your card stock one inch wider than your cardboard

Cut your card stock one inch longer than your cardboard

Apply a liquid glue to one side of your cardboard/chipboard then lay it, centered well, on your card stock.  Mash the fool out of the cardboard to get good adhesion of the glue to the card stock.

Add glu to the cardboard then lay it on your card stock

Next you will cut the corners of the card stock.  Don’t cut right up to the corner of the cardboard/chipboard, leave yourself about 1/8 inch.  Removing these corners takes the bulk out when you get to gluing the flaps over.  You will have a nice smooth mitered corner when you get finished.

Cut the corners away

Using your fingers, or a bone folder, train your paper to go over the top of the cardboard/chipboard.  This will give your cover edges a nice crisp edge.

Fold the edges of the card stock over the cardboard

Glue these flaps into place.  Repeat these same steps to the other cover of your notebook.

Glue the flaps to the cardboard

Lastly you will cut card stock to cover the cardboard/chipboard that is left exposed.  I used the remaining 3 inch strip of card stock from this 12 x 12 sheet.  I measured the pieces 3″ x 6″.  Glue these cover pieces and then adhere to the cardboard/chipboard.

Glue the cover piece over the exposed cardboard

I have these covers under a weight to keep them from buckling or curling as the glue dries.  This also ensures really good adhesion of the glue to both the card stock and the cardboard/chipboard.  I will leave these overnight to dry under the heavy pressure of my cast iron dutch oven with these covers atop a piece of wax paper and topped with another piece of wax paper.  This will prevent any glue that leaks out sticking to the surfaces above and below them.

I’ll have pictures of the completed notebook with details in another post, probably tomorrow.  Have fun recycling and creating.




4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. gardenpinks
    Aug 19, 2012 @ 14:41:47

    Having time off doesn’t need to be justified Leslie 🙂 You are allowed to give yourself some play time you know!
    So Joe will have posh new notebooks for when you are ready to go out on the road again? I love new notebooks but then paper of any kind draws me, since I was a youngster I have been a collector of paper and pens! Adore the stationer’s shelves 🙂
    I have yet to play with my Bind it All, it was a birthday present but it has only been out of the box a couple of times. I haven’t any wires for it yet!

    Love and hugs
    Lynn xx


    • Message In A Fold
      Aug 19, 2012 @ 19:18:19

      Do I remember you saying there is a ribbon stash in your craft space? Have you thought of using bits of ribbon to use as binding?

      I needed to have an incentive to keep going. You know….dangle a carrot in front of a horse or mule to get something accomplished. 🙂

      So, how was the most recent house showing? You getting closer to Cotswold? Now I can’t remember where your dream home is, drat 😦

      Love you – Leslie


      • gardenpinks
        Aug 21, 2012 @ 16:08:39

        Yes Leslie I do have some ribbon and have used it as a binding but not terribly keen. I want some wires!!!!!!!!!
        We haven’t had any house viewings for months but are putting the whole thing into the hands of an estate agent now but first we had to sort out the roof space (loft/attic) not only did it have to be cleared of accumulated junk – why did we ever keep all that stuff?? Although we did discover a bag of goose eggs which will be for a future project. Then insulation had to be laid down in the roof space, a new hatch cover made and painted and then we could get an Energy Performance inspection; these are a complete joke but law in the UK…no house can be sold without an Energy Performance Certificate! Totally pointless in our house as it will almost surely be gutted and extended and not look anything like it does now. Not only that but the “system” of this whole energy performance doodah can’t cope with houses that are heated by waste engine oil, generate their own electricity, have 3 foot thick stone walls which do not have a cavity but are rubble filled so the energy rating is based on some ‘typical’ house 🙂 Madness.
        Now that we had this EPC thing done today we can get the estate agent out again and start marketing.
        The Cotswolds is where we live at present but we hope to move to Cornwall 🙂

        Love and hugs
        Lynn xx

      • Message In A Fold
        Aug 21, 2012 @ 20:10:02

        Oh the names in your world. I forget them or get confused.

        Sounds as though you and Rod have been working your selves to falling down. I bet sorting through the attic/loft space was hot and sneeze inducing ;-). I don’t envy you going through all the boxes and trunks sorting what to keep and what to toss.

        I also imagine a gleeful utterance brightened the air when you found the goose eggs. I can’t think what you will do with them but I await your artistic magic once you are ready to show us all.

        Sounds as though you have government agencies that run amok over there as we have with ours. My thought, prayers, and crossed fingers are rooting for you to finally arrive at the day you sign papers getting your home sold.

        As to the Zutter wires, are they dearly priced where you live or are they not even available? I’ll have to look through my stash and see what I have. Maybe I can send you some.

        You and Rod take care of yourselves. I’m trying to find a few minutes to answer your kind and much appreciated email. I’ve stolen away for a few minutes to my car in the parking lot. Getting a cigarette fix and a bit of quiet time from all the constant activity in Joe’s care at the hospital.

        Love you – Leslie

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