A few days ago I came across this lovely blog and art of Ingrid Dijkers. And it drove me to want to have custom binders of my own to fill up with pages and bits and pieces. Most of you know that a lot of the time I work in books which I make. I do actually find this quite restrictive, there are just times when you want to use a CD for a page.. or a piece of cardboard that is floating around unused from another project. So this was my solution, some cardboard and some binder rings which I am a huge fan of and have acquired a few sets of over the last year.
Some of the things you are going to need are:
Ruler (if you have a metal one with measurements on it that is best)
Hole tool (or you can use an awl)
Card Board ( from boxes, ideally you want something 3mm thick and sturdy) I used some packaging cardboard for the first one and some harder type of the same which for the second, the second one (blue) is more sturdy because of it but the other one is just normal corrugated board you get from beer cartons and boxes, you could use a game board if you wanted)
PVA Glue ( or Gel medium if you prefer)
Pages (inside mine are standard cardstock and cut up manilla folder left overs.. You can use anything!)
You will need to decide what size you want your folder to be, and the middle will depend on how large then rings you are using are.. You want at least 3mm on each side of the rings to spare for when it is closed so you dont get marks on your front cover.
Mark where the middle of your binder spine is and where you will want to have the holes in your pages. I made a template page and used a normal hole punch to figure out where mine were going.. but if you wanted to use more rings you would need to punch the extra hole as well. As you can see I have not set the ring to sit in its middle but closer to the join, mark this on both sides of the line. Using the hole tool make the back side hole a little bigger than the other side so you can slip the rivet joint through more easily.
I like to score my lines outside of the line I drew for the spine, it will give a more accurate fold when you close the folder and add in the rings.. as cardboard is thicker than paper this makes a big difference.
Fold the folder up and put your rings in to make sure there is plenty of clearance and that they fit well. Then take them out.
Now the really fun part! Time to decorate your cover! I used an old instruction manual from my Ikea chests which I store my various bits and pieces in on the desk.. as well as some old lined paper and security envelopes, I went with a blue white and little black scheme. (You could also use contact paper, paint on it, fabric whatever you like on the cover)
Glue those down as you wish. After I had done this stage and the gel medium had set I painted over a wash of white acrylic to take down the brightness. Fold the edges over and glue them down, Cutting off a triangle from the corners makes this a little easier (but leave the same thickness as your paper between the cut and the corner of the board!)
While you are waiting for that to dry you could start on some of the inside pages, or another binder..
A coat of sealer later and here we are..
This is the original one I made, made from whatever I had around that was cream, brown and tan. Including some paper decorated with Derwent Inktense pencils and masking tape.
As you can see in the back of this one there is also a paper fastener piece to add in extra paper (this was added before covering the front/back to make it secure and more attractive).
If you have any questions about the project be sure to leave me a note and I will do my best to give you a helpful answer 😀 Most of all.. Enjoy!