Make a mini saddle-stitched booklet | How About Orange

October 12, 2007

Make a mini saddle-stitched booklet

I have a stack of scratch paper that's been sitting on top of my filing cabinet, annoying me. You know how when you print emails, sometimes there's nothing but one line of text on the second page? It's stuff like that. And yet in my purse, I never seem to have any paper whatsoever, so I scribble people's email addresses on the backs of crumpled receipts. So here's my solution: tiny notebooks.

You will need: Mostly-blank scratch paper, clear contact paper, decorative paper, a ruler, something that cuts paper, a stapler, and a pin.

I decided to make my notebooks 3"x4" when folded. If you want that size, find a piece of decorative paper that's at least 6"x4" or print yourself something on one of the pieces of scratch paper. (I printed some designs I made in Illustrator.) Laminate both sides of the sheet with clear contact paper.

You could also make little cut-paper collages on your notebook cover or laminate your kid's drawings.

Cut your decorative paper and your scratch paper into 6"x4" pieces and fold in half. (I used 8 pieces of scrap paper to make 16-page booklets.)

Fit your folded blank sheets inside the cover. Swing your stapler all the way open if it won't reach to the spine and carefully align it on the fold. Press just enough to make a staple come out and make indentations in the paper, but stop pushing before the staple crumples into a flattened mess. (Unless your stapler is powerful enough to poke all the way through; mine's not.)

Set the staple aside and use a pin or needle to poke all the way through the paper stack in the places where your hole indentations went. Then push your staple through, turn the paper stack over, and use your fingernail, letter opener, or screwdriver to close the staple. Repeat for the second staple.

Close your new booklet and let it sit under a heavy book for awhile to press it shut. Voila.

30 comments:

Amy said...

Great idea and love your blog!

Celeste said...

the orange paper. um yeah i gotta have it. awesome idea. as a scrapbooker i have tons of patterned paper that i could use for this - a lot of it scrap!

Anonymous said...

Wow! I love it! I can't wait to make myself one! Thanks for all the great ideas - I too love your blog. :)

Anonymous said...

Cute!

Also, just saw this over at Apartment Therapy & it made me think of your blog:
http://chicago.apartmenttherapy.com/chicago/good-quotes/good-quotes-frank-sinatra-033950

Love the blog - Frank is in good company! ;)

Jess said...

That's awesome!!! Hee hee!

Charli said...

I did a few of these but using ribbon instead of staples and my 3 year old is constantly taking off with them! I blogged it so you can see it... I think...

Beth Howard said...

Brilliant! I just love your simple and useful ideas. Just like a resourceful Midwesterner!

studiosmith said...

This post is cool first of all, but second of all, thanks for taking time out of your day to plan this out, write it, take photos and then post it all. Very much appreciated.

Jane said...

Great idea for extra paper! Kind of how I made my wedding program. Except I just stitched up the binding with my sewing machine (equipped with an already dull needle)

jeanetta said...

how quick and easy and cute to boot.

Jane who? said...

Jess, you can also use fusible web (like you used for your onesies).
Attach your favorite fabric to a piece of scrap paper and use that for the cover.

mundanejane

Christa Baca said...
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Christa Baca said...
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Cher Ami said...

i've never really attempted to stitch any paper together but I might give it a try!

design for mankind. said...

YAY! The perfect weekend project!!!!

LOOOOVE your blog; mind if I add you to my blogroll???

Anonymous said...

I love your booklets! I was wondering...how do you get the pages to fit so nicely? When I make them, once I fold them, the pages kinda push past the covers so I end up attempting to trim them but they get all crooked. Any tips would be awesome!

krissy said...

fantastic idea and great tutorial! thank you so much...

Christa Baca said...

Yuu can alos buy a long reach stapler and that will make the project even easier. I bought mine for about $30.

People St.Clair said...

What a great project I it will be my weekend activity. Thanks.

Jess said...

You guys have lots of great suggestions. Design for Mankind, of course you can!

Anonymous, yep, my innermost pages poke out 1/8" or slightly less. To me, that's acceptable, since it's just scrap paper and I'm not going to sell these, so I don't care. You could make your cover 1/4" wider than the interior pages, so when folded, no pages poke out beyond the cover.

Jane, I didn't know I could use that fusible web stuff on paper! Holy cow! A new world of opportunities.

katelnorth said...

ok, now THAT'S a good idea. Thanks!

monica yvette said...

This is great! I wish I would have read this post sooner because I would have skipped my trip last weekend to Kinkos where I had a mini book printed. Now, I'll just stay home!

Tny said...

It's really sweet and cute notebook.. Such a great idea :)

A Little Diddy said...

This is a great idea, I was just trying to figure out wht to do with all of my scrap paper. Thank you.

Tina said...

Here's another easy way to staple the paper together without a long-reach stapler: http://www.instructables.com/id/SYAQ232F5VMXAVN/ - he uses a regular stapler and staples into an eraser (under the paper), then just folds the prongs over (no additional hole-poking necessary). I've tried it and it works really well.

Jess said...

Great idea!

bliss said...

This is a fantastic idea. My daughter is making several to give as Christmas gifts.

Thanks so much for sharing this with us. :o)

Cams said...

"Laminate both sides of the sheet with clear contact paper."

- How do I do this? Where can I get 'clear contact paper'?

Thank you!

Jess said...

Cams, by "laminate both sides", I just mean stick a piece of contact paper on one side of your paper, turn it over, and stick another piece to the flip side. So your paper is sandwiched in the middle. You can buy clear contact paper at Home Depot or Target, probably Walmart; any big multi-purpose store.

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