Since I like to use my own paper for my sketchbooks, I’m always trying new ways of sewing them. This time, I want to show you how I stich my sketchbooks in a very easy way.

This are the MATERIALS that you will need:

  • Depending on the thickness of your paper, 5 sheets of paper. If you just use copy paper you can have more pages.
  • Cardstock for the cover. The same size as your paper for the pages.
  • Large needle
  • Heavy sewing or linen thread, embroidery floss or string
  • Binder’s wax
  • Awl or a tack
  • Bone folder to help you crease the paper or you can also use a spoon
  • Binder clips
  • Utility knife.

Now, let’s make the sketchbook:

  1. CUT AND FOLD INSIDE PAPER: I used some 12 by 9 inches paper straight from a pad so I didn’t have to cut it. I fold the papers in half and used the bone folder (or the side of a spoon) to make the crease sharp. Make a stack with the papers.
  2. CUT AND FOLD THE COVER: I used a 12 by 12 inches scrapbook paper and folded the bottom 3 inches in order to have a 12 by 9 inches cover. The same size of the pages. The extra folded part, I folded inside and glued the sides to make a pocket. Fold the cover in half.
  3. Open the pages and the cover and put the papers inside the cover piece. Keep them open with a binder clip.
  4. MAKE A HOLE PUNCHING PATTERN: Use a scrap paper the same height as your cover by 2” wide. In my case 9 inches and 2 inches wide. Fold the strip of paper in half lengthwise. Unfold. Divide the width of the patter paper by folding it in half and again in half and repeat once more. you will have a long strip of paper with several lines marked. Mark the intersections with a pen or pencil.
  5. Place the pattern over the cover and papers. Use binder clips at each side of the papers to hold them together. Using an awl or needle, punch the holes through all the pages and cover.
  6. PREPARING THE THREAD: Cut a piece of thread 2 1/2 times the length of the book.  If using the wax, run the thread through the wax several times. Insert the thread in the needle.
  7. STITCHING THE SKETCHBOOK: Starting from the inside bottom hole of the book, insert the  needle and thread. Leave enough thread so you can make a knot when finished. I like to hold temporarily this end in place with some tape. Continue sewing through the rest of the holes. When you reach the top hole, just sew back until you reach the bottom hole.
  8. MAKE A KNOT: and finish the book by folding it back and press it under heavy books. Also, I like to finish the book by trimming the pages that stick out using a metal ruler and an utility knife.

This makes a nice, portable and efficient book that I can use by itself or use it with my traveler’s cover. Here is the video for this tutorial: