There are two quick and easy ways to make a plain notebook the perfect personalized journal, sketchbook, or class note collector in four steps or less.


It feels early but it is that time of the year when stores are full of school supplies and notebooks are everywhere.  Despite all our advances in technology there is just something about writing on paper and many students are expected to have these essential items for each class they take.  Whether you are a student or a self-confessed blank book addict like myself, it is always fun to personalize a notebook.


Contact paper makes a fast and easy book cover.


The first and easiest book cover is to use contact paper.  If you are lucky and find a pattern that you want to highlight, then all you have to do is peel and smooth it on the cover of your plain notebook.  Another choice is to take different contact papers and create stripes, polka dots, or collages.  So simple and yet it strengthens the cover enough to survive backpacks and all the bruises of being a loved notebook.


Another easy way to make a book cover can use recycled paper from your home.  An old brown paper grocery bag, left over wallpaper, or wrapping paper make great book covers.  Brown paper grocery bags are perfect for students as it gives a blank surface that just calls out for doodles, notes, and name-writing practice.


After using a glue stick to secure the paper to the inside of the cover, fold the corners like you would a present and press down with double-sided tape.

Take the chosen paper, in my case wrapping paper, and cut a piece bigger than your notebook.  This is a lot like wrapping a present.  Using a glue stick, glue the paper to the inside of the front and back covers.


As you would wrap a present, take your finger at the corner of the fold and press it along the paper making it into a triangle.  Using double-sided tape, fold and secure the triangles onto the inside of the front and back covers.  Cutting along the spine of your notebook, fold the paper up in a straight line so it covers more of the surface.

I used contact paper to reinforce the spine. Now I can’t wait to find more wrapping paper so I can try stripes!

Adding contact paper to the inside covers secures all the edges and creates a smooth surface inside your notebook.  The final touch is to reinforce the spine so the paper doesn’t rip during repeated openings and closings.  Using bookbinding tape is ideal though contact paper and duct tape are perfect substitutes.  Remember that with this technique you can use any wrapping paper you like and creating contrasting stripes is another easy way to personalize your notebook – your design imagination can run wild!









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