Mini Beaded Leather Book

November 1, 2011 at 5:52 pm Leave a comment

After going to a small handmade craft store, I got some ideas of things to make at home. They had a $20 leather necklace with a small leather book on it. I thought that I could make it for at least $15 cheaper so I made the book a few days later. Here are some pics of the finished result, and keep reading for basic instruction on how to make it.



Supplies I used:

  • Leather (I used relatively soft leather, but you can make it out of any kind you want, as long as it isn’t to stiff)
  • rotary leather cutter and cutting board
  • Needles and thread
  • paper
  • paper-cutter
  • bead (to hold the book shut, I made one out of matching leather)

The following are optional; they are for the decorations. You can do whatever you want to decorate your book, including beads, feathers, layered leather, fabric, sequins, and much more.

  • X-acto craft knife (for the tree papercut art in the front)
  • small beads

Decide how large you want the pages to be (if you’re a beginner I suggest starting small), and cut the paper twice as long, so that it can be folded vertically. After you’ve cut all the pages you’ll need, fold them in half, and sew down the middle bookbinding-style. (If you’re decorating the paper at all, such as the papercut tree, you will want to do that before the previous step.) You may need to make separate sections according to how thick and how many pages of paper you have, but I just made a single section. If you don’t know basic bookbinding techniques and need detailed instructions, check out this website  http://michaelshannon.us/makeabook/. There are also many other websites and books on bookbinding.

Once you have your paper sewn and finished, cut the leather as long as you want the cover to be on a cutting board or mat. Make sure and allow for the width of the spine when you figure the length of the leather. You also will want to have 1/8-1/4 of an inch of leather on each side of the paper. Decorate the leather with beads or other things (see a few suggestions above). This is the fun part! Use your imagination to come up with neat ways to make your book stand out. Once you’re done decorating, attach the leather to the paper by sewing. Depending on the thickness of your paper and leather, figure out the best way to do this. Weave in the ends, and then you’ll only have one more thing to do. Sew the button to the edge of the front cover, and make a loop and attach it to the back cover. This way the loop goes around the button to keep the book closed, as in the picture. Now you’re done! If you want to make it a necklace like the original one I saw, just sew a strip of leather to the spine of the book and loop it around.

As I said, you need to know basic bookbinding skills for this project, but don’t let that discourage you. Go to the link above or Google bookbinding.

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Entry filed under: Bookmaking, Papercuts. Tags: , , , , .

Mini Hardcover Book

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