Pocket Sketchbook with Elastic Closure

In my Bookworks class at CCA last week, my students and I made the full-sized sketchbooks with the rounded back, as shown in Making Handmade Books. One student asked "What about the elastic that holds it together?" That loop of elastic, while ubiquitous on Moleskine notebooks, doesn't tend to be featured in handmade books. After examining its construction, I fashioned a little pocket notebook of my own. This one has the same core as the full-sized book, with the subtraction of the end bands, the use of only two sewing tapes (instead of three), and the addition of an elastic at the back.

Here is a somewhat abbreviated look at its construction, really to show you the elastic closure. You can find fully detailed binding instructions under "Multiple Signature with Rounded Spine" on pp. 155-158.

Sheets, grained short, are folded into a binder's fold
(fold, slit, fold, slit, fold)

Measure and punch holes to accommodate 
two binder's tapes.

Self-adhesive linen tape helps secure the 1/4" braided elastic.

This torn edges of the first and last pages get glued onto the inside covers,
both front and back. Angle the cover up to glue.
Book block sits snugly in the spine.

Endpapers are adhered over the torn edges. 
(They should be glued first. They aren't glued yet in this picture.)

The cover paper is a trimmed piece of Tyvek envelope, stained with black acrylic ink.

Here is the pocket-sized sketchbook with its full-sized, rounded back classmate.
The half-cloth binding is a combo of black book cloth spine and 
mulberry paper-backed flannel sheet that feels like suede.
So it would not ravel, I glued a little folded square to the end of the bookmark ribbon.

This is post #401.


Hi Lotta, thank you so much for such a fabulous tutorial, although I have made books myself .......it's so good to have such a great reminder.
Love, Marilyn xx
bedankt voor het stappenplan!
Lizzie said…
A very nice little notebook. I used eyelets to attach an elastic closure, when I made a "policeman" style notebook (flip cover, with an elastic strap near the bottom). It worked very well, but it's good to see a "proper" way to attach elastic to a hard case cover.
Love the stained tyvek idea - recycling at its best!
Alisa said…
Lizzie, I'm sure your eyelets added some style to your notebook. This is just one way. I say, whatever works!