Sometimes you need a little precious book to write down your thoughts. Or you want to give one as a thoughtful present filled with wisdom quotes to pass on to a loved one.
This tutorial shows you how to make a tiny book (1.5 x 2 inch – 3.5 x 5 cm) from scratch. It has 96 pages to fill with writings or mini art. Get inspired and enjoy!
(P.S. If you would like some great printable papers and designs for free for the cover of this book, subscribe here and get 10 digital collage sheets and a lot more for free).
- mat (or cork board)
- relatively fine needle
- sandpaper: fine & rough
- pen or pencil
- 2 pieces of cardboard, each 1.5 x 2 inch – 3.5 x 5 cm
- 2 normal sheets of print paper
- washi tape or other tape
- embroidery thread
- 2 ribbon clamps, about 1 inch – 2.5 cm
- lobster clasp
- 3 jump rings (4mm)
- strong glue for the ribbon clamps
- normal glue for paper
- a piece of decorative paper, 2 inch high x min. 3.5 inch long (5 cm high x min. 9 cm long)
Phase 1: Preparing the signatures
Step 1: Use the 2 sheets of print paper to cut 24 pieces of 3 x 2 inch – 7 x 5 cm.
Step 2: Make 6 stacks of 4 pieces each. Fold each stack in half crosswise.
Step 3: You need a punch guide to punch holes in the fold of the signatures. Take a piece of scrap paper of exactly 2 inch – 5 cm long. Fold in half lengthwise. Draw a line in the fold and make the markings as on the sketch.
Step 4: Place the first signature opened upon the mat. Place the guide you just made in the fold of the signature. Make sure you line up the top and bottom correctly.
Step 5: Punch holes at the ¼, 1 & 1 ¾ inch marks –0.7, 2.5 & 4.3 cm. Punch through both the guide and the signature.
Step 6: Repeat for all signatures.
Phase 2: Preparing the cover
Step 7: Take the piece of decorative paper (2 inch high x min. 3.5 inch long – 5 cm high x min. 9 cm long) and stick a piece of washi tape (or other kind of tape) on the non-decorative side of the paper, about right in the middle. The tape will enforce the spine. You can measure if you like, a few mm off is not a problem, that’s why the length of the paper isn’t determined yet. Don’t fold the paper in half to find the center. Cut off any tape excess precisely.
Step 8: Mark the middle of the width of the tape and draw two lines from top to bottom about 2mm from the center on each side.
Step 9: Put the punch guide (see step 3) on each line and punch holes in the spine on both lines. This makes 6 holes in the spine. I put the result on colored paper to show the holes. Use the mat to protect your work surface.
Step 10: Put all the signatures closed on top of each other. Put a piece of the cardboard (1.5 x 2 inch – 3.5 x 5 cm) on each side. I used paper clamps for the picture. You don’t need them per se, but they can come in handy.
Step 11: Place the “back” of this stack precisely on the spine of the cover and fold the front and back in its place. Make two clean folds.
Step 12: Take the cover of of the stack and fold extra (don’t tear).
Phase 3: Sewing it all together
Step 13: Cut a piece of the embroidery thread, 39 inch – 100cm in length (this is too much, but it makes the sewing much easier). The embroidery thread probably has 6 strands, but 3 strands are enough. You can use 2 if you like.
Step 14: Sew as followed:
1. From outside to inside: middle hole 1st signature (leave about 2 inch – 5cm of thread hanging)
2. From inside to outside: top hole 1st signature + top hole cover
3. From outside to inside: middle hole cover + middle hole 1st signature
4. From inside to outside: bottom hole 1st signature + bottom hole cover
5. From outside to inside: middle hole cover + middle hole 2nd signature
Step 15: Repeat sewing steps 2-5 with signatures 2 and 3. Keep using the first row of holes. When the 3rd signature is in place, continue with the 4th signature, but from there on take the second row of holes in the cover.
Step 16: When you finished the last step of signature 6, reunite the thread with its beginning, make a double knot and trim.
Step 18: Fold the cover over the cardboard and make a nice fold.
Step 19: Open the book again. Glue the cardboard next to the fold you just made. Use the regular paper glue. Repeat on the back of the book.
Step 20: Trim the decorative cover paper to size.
Phase 5: Finishing the book
Step 21: Sand the edges of the cover as rough / fine as you like. Use the fine sandpaper.
Step 22: Sand the sides of the papers within the book for an aged effect. Use the rough sandpaper for this.
Step 23: Put a dab of strong glue over the edge of the front cover where the lock will come.
Step 24: Place the ribbon clamp over the glued part, nicely in the middle.
Step 25: Use pliers to firmly shut the clamp into the cover. Repeat on the back cover.
Step 26: Close one jump ring with the piers.
Step 27: Take a second jump ring, open it, and put it through the first one and also through the loop of the font cover clamp. Close the second jump ring.
Step 28: Take the third jump ring, open it, and put it through the second jump ring and the loop of the lobster clasp.
Step 29: Close the book by putting the lobster clasp through the back cover loop.
Ready! Add a long chain and you’ll turn your Fairy Book into a unique necklace.
Lots of love,