How to Make A Journal

how to make a journal

Thats a good question, how to make a journal? I have always loved those handmade style of journals and notebooks, so when I went to try and make my own, I realized how easy it really is.  You only need a few things to make your own journal and it takes no time at all.  Check out the full tutorial below!


  • Chipboard or heavy card stock paper
  • White computer paper (about 15 sheets
  • An awl or hole puncher ( I bought Martha Stewarts screw punch, it worked really well)
  • Embroidery thread
  • large sewing needle
  • binder clips
  • cutting mat and ruler
  • elastic
  • box cutter
  • paper score

how to make a journal

First thing you would want to do is print a design onto your chipboard or card stock. My printer had trouble with the chipboard as it was probably too thick.  With some finagling I got it to work, but card stock would probably be much easier to use.  You can also skip printing all together. Once ready to cut, use your cutting mat, ruler, and box cutter and cut your chipboard to 5″ high by 7″ wide.  Next step is to cut your computer paper to 6.5″ wide by 4.5″ high.  The reason behind cutting your computer paper smaller is that once you complete your journal and fold it in half, your paper will come out from all sides if not cut smaller.

how to make a journalOnce your chip board and computer paper are cut to size, find the middle and score a line.  This will help you keep your punches even.  Once you score your paper, punch holes along the scored line starting 1/2″ in and continue to make holes every 1/2″.  Once done, find the horizontal middle of your chipboard paper and make 2 holes 1/2″ apart for your elastic on the far left side of the paper.  Once the chipboard is folded in half, these holes will be on the back “cover” of your journal. You can see what I did in the right picture above.

how to make a journalOnce your holes are made, stack your computer paper and chipboard together, using binder clips to hold everything together tightly.  Using your embroider thread, weave the needle onto the thread leaving a little tail (do not double the thread like in normal sewing). Tie a knot at the end of your thread.  We will be using a simple back stitch to hold everything together.  Start with your first hole, bringing the thread around the edge of the journal and back through the second hole.  Continue back down into the first hole, up through the third hole, back down into the second hole, up into the fourth hole, back down into the third hole, and continue on until you have completed the entire bind of the book.  Tie another knot in the end, making sure your knots start and end on the inside of your journal.

how to make a journalNext step is to take your elastic and thread it through your two pre-punched holes.  Bring around to the front of your journal and tie a knot.  Once you have done so, spin the knot around towards the back of the journal so that its a clean line of elastic.  Fold your journal in half, working with the paper to break it in a bit.  And done!

Ive been using my journal for scheduling and writing down ideas for the blog. Its a great size, easy to bring around with you, and closes up really nicely with the elastic.  You can easily switch out the computer paper for graph paper or lined paper.  You can also make these journals larger or smaller.  Before this I never knew how to make a journal nor did I ever realize how easy and simple it could be. Enjoy!


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