My Handmade Journal52

Hi again! Today I’m excited to share the details of my handmade Journal52.

I usually hand bind my own writing journals and art journals, so when I read about Journal52, I knew I’d make my own.  I think I’m starting to “find my groove” with bookbinding, and prefer long stitch on a duct/Duck tape spine, but I also try different things a lot.

This time I decided to go with a 5-hole pamphlet stitch, or at least the variation thereof that happened when I read this tutorial and later attempted it while not sitting in front of said tutorial. I used cardstock, cut into what was called “quarter sized” when I made zines–I guess 4.25″ x 5.5″ folded. I decided to try a fabric cover usings some old t-shirt material that I liked with the spine area reinforced with denim (mostly not visible, except in the between-signature spreads).


I don’t use fabric covering too often, and obviously a jersey knit is going to be stretchier than a weave, so the lines ended up looking a little wonky. I like a little wonky. It’s my blessing & my curse.


My preferred closure is a long ribbon/braid/strand of thread wrapped around a button on the front. This one is sparkly & pink.

I appliqued a strip of fabric from another long lost shirt of mine, a beloved 70’s polyester print. I used an embroidery stitch I invented myself, called “I tried to figure out herringbone stitch as I went along, and ended up with a ragged barbed wire-type thing”. I like it. See: a little bit of wonkiness above.


And somewhere in the process I did a spread on the endpapers, announcing the project to come, collage & watercolor & boookbinding notes.


Any readers who bind their own books, please share your favorite links! Or your own bookbinding adventures, of course!


3 thoughts on “My Handmade Journal52

  1. Congratulations on your new blog . . . I’ve enjoyed looking at your posts thus far. A couple of hints: if you want to stabalize knit fabrics for your next cover use some leightweight iron-on interfacing (fabric on the board and lay the interfacing over it then iron rather than the fabric on top, that way it retains it’s shape) and start categorising your posts and using tags . . . you can go back and do this quite easily . . . it’s great for us readers who might want to pull up similar posts or everything about a particular topic.

    Gosh I hope that doesn’t sound bossy! The categories and tags are something I was told about early on and I’m so glad I was!

    1. No, thank you! I love constructive feedback like this! I’ll work on the tags thing. What I really wish I knew how to do better was photograph. About the interfacing, I think that’s what I did, the interfacing on top. Have you ever used stabilized knit for quilts? That’s my next venture, I think.

      1. No, I haven’t, although I can’t see why it couldn’t be done. I’d probably tie it or hand sticth the quilting if I did . . . more likely tie it, or sew on buttons or tufts of yarn at intervals. Damn! Another idea to store away and I don’t get round to all the ideas I already have!

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