Make your own simple stapled sketchbook

The sketchbooks that we make in this manner are not archival quality as they contain things that were never meant to use in sketchbooks.

Simple Stapled Sketchbook


  • Various papers cut down to similar size (about 12 to 16 pieces)
  • two pieces of Tyvek®* (as large as the largest paper in your book) or use very sturdy paper
  • Binder clips
  • Pencil and ruler
  • Stapler and staples
  • Wide, opaque tape

*Many courier envelopes are made of Tyvek®. It is a paper like, very strong, rip and water resistant material. Use the back of used envelopes to create a sturdy, flexible cover for your sketchbook.


  1. On the blank side of one of the pieces of Tyvek®, draw a faint pencil line about 5 mm from one of the short edges on the front cover paper.
  2. Gather various pieces of paper including various papers, envelopes, doilies, pages from the recycle bin, etc. If the pages are folded in half, make sure all the folds are going to the same side. If the pages have only one cut or straight side, make sure that edge is also on the same side as the folds.  Add the front Tyvek® paper to the front (with the drawn line at the edge with the folds and any writing toward the inside) and the back to the back with the side you want showing facing the outside.
  3. Knock the stack of papers against a table to line them all up so that they are even against the side with any folds (and the pencil line).
  4. Use one binder clip to hold all the papers together. Make sure that all your folds are on the end that was knocked on the table so that all the folds and edges are lined up and then stack the other binder clip to the stack
  5. Staple through the pages once in the middle, on the line, and once about a 5 mm from the top along the line and again about 5 mm from the bottom along the line.
  6. Put the ruler along the line of staples and fold each page up and over the ruler to make crease lines. This will help the book open easily.
  7. Cut a piece of tape the same length as the book is tall.
  8. Place the tape so that half the tape is on the front cover, wrap the excess tape to the back of the book, making sure that you cover the staples on both the front and the back. Rub (burnish) the tape to help it to really stick to the sketchbook. The tape will cover the staples making the sketchbook safer to use and more durable.

One Response to Make your own simple stapled sketchbook

  1. Can’t wait to see what you do with your classes! I’m always on the lookout for more ideas for my child.

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