[D.I.Y. Tutorial] Ribbon details for notebooks


Hello lovelies! How are you this bright and sunny Wednesday afternoon?

Well, seeing as we’ve such a fine day today, what better reason to get crafting and this week’s DIY project would actually be quite apt too. As most of you all know, I tend to personalise the front covers of my sketchbooks, notebooks and diaries all the time; whether they are doodled all over, hand stamped or embellished. So in today’s tutorial I’m going to show you how to personalise your little book of ideas/doodles using felt and lovely ribbon but in a way that they act as a little binding lock type-thing. Oh, I forgot to mention last month, but I’m officially one of Jane Means team of bloggers (woo!!) so the ribbons I have in fact used in this tutorial are courtesy of Jane Means! She has a fabulous collection of ribbons ladies…..if you ever want to get hold of some!

Anyway, this project literally took me 30 mins from start to finish and all I want to show you is how simple techniques and materials can go a long way in the hope that these weekly tutorials inspires you to get crafting more, however limited you think you are with your resources! You’ll be surprised at what you can do with the little you think you have at home! :) So….here’s what you’ll need for this one:

  1. Notebook of any size
  2. Ribbons
  3. Crafting Felt (make sure you have enough to go around the size of your book)
  4. Embellishments such as buttons, beads and trimmings.
  5. Glue gun (or any good crafting adhesive)
  6. Scissors
  7. Ruler



  1. Take your sheet of felt in your desired colour (I chose yellow to go with my pink book) and cut a strip so it’s roughly 7-8cm/3″ in width and whatever length would suit your notebook i.e. it should be able to cover the front, the spine and the back of the book. Obviously you can choose to go for a much wider or less wider band.
  2. Stick down the front edge of the felt to the edge of the notebook, carefully so that they are aligned neatly. Now you can chose to have a centimetre of felt to overlap so that you’re sticking it to the inner side of the book but I felt that with the thickness of the felt it would prevent the book from closing properly. But this is totally up to you and the book you chose to work on. Make sure you apply some glue to the spine too before you finish at the back cover. Open the book slightly while doing these stages so that when you close the book you aren’t left with any slack material in between.
  3. If you find there’s any excess felt and you don’t want to tuck it into the book then cut around it neatly so it’s flush with the edge of the notebook.MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Ribbon-Notebook_1-WEB
  4. Now chose a ribbon of your choice. I picked out this lovely navy blue polka dot Jane Means ribbon which I thought worked perfectly with the pink and the yellow combo. Measure out the length of the ribbon required based on the book you’ve got by going around the book and ensure you have at least 15 cm extra on both sides so that you have enough to tie a nice bow with.
  5. Like you did with the felt band, stick down the ribbon at the three main points; on the front, spine and back. You don’t need to cover the ribbon entirely but that is all depending on the glue you use as you don’t want it to stiffen up more than what is required when dried. If you use the glue gun then just follow the three points. Again, while you’re sticking the ribbon down onto the spine area, just open the book slightly to prevent from any slacking….but not too much so that it’s too taut. MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Ribbon-Notebook_2-WEB

Et voila! You have you’re very own personalised and beautified little notebook with a cute ribbon detail. And its a great little way to keep those prying eyes and hands away from your books! ;) What if you don’t have enough felt to go around your bigger notebooks? Well, scrap the felt and here’s how to create a simple wrap around/binding clasp detail out of ribbon, a button and an elastic band (one that you can use for your hair!)

Firstly, measure out the desired length out of ribbon. I used another Jane Means ribbon in mint green with pink polka dots. It doesn’t need to overlap but enough so that the elastic band binds the two ends together (so roughly check to see how much you’ll need against the size of your elastic band) Secondly, wrap one end of the ribbon around your elastic band and glue it into place without sticking the elastic to the ribbon. And on the other end of the ribbon, glue down your big bold button. I would highly recommend using the glue gun for this! And finally, wrap both ends around your sketchbook and loop the elastic band over the button to fasten it shut! That’s it!!! :) You now have a pretty ribbon, elastic band to keep those books securely closed.

MbM_DIY Tutorial_Ribbon Notebook_3MbM_DIY-Tutorial_Ribbon-Notebook_4-WEB [Image credit: ©MadebyMolu]

So…..go dig out your craft supplies and let’s get crafting folk!! There really isn’t any excuse not to try your hand at experimenting with materials you have kicking about your home. If you decide to follow any of my tutorials, you know the drill…..please do share your creations either on FacebookTwitter or IG but make sure to hashtag it with #craftwithmolu so that I’m able to see them! Also, if you have any queries, please feel free to drop me a line in the comments section below.

Enjoy the rest of your week and happy crafting!! x x x

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