Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial

(This post is part of my Refresh Your Craft & Soul Blog Event – see the beginning HERE!)

Well it’s the last post for the evening, so it’s appropriate for me to share this project – a book for me to write in before I go to sleep. It will help me…

Cleanse My Mind:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

I have trouble getting to sleep most nights. I thought that having a book by my bed, to empty my worries and daydreams into, might help me settle.

Here’s a tutorial if you’d like to make your own…

Step 1: Choose some heavyweight fabric. I had this gorgeous piece of vintage silky fabric, which must have been for some heavy curtains? I’m not sure but it is lovely. I wanted my bedtime book to feel tactile – I’m hoping the smooth cover with soothe my soul too. You could also use thick felt or another sturdy material:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 2: Decide how big you want the covers to be. I wanted to use mine with A4 paper, so I measured a rectangle that was 13×9″, as this gave a decent gap around the pages:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 3: Cut the rectangle out, then seal the edges if you’re using fabric that frays. I used my sewing machine to make a zig-zag stitch all around the edge of the rectangle, but it was still fraying so I put PVA glue on my fingertip and rubbed it along the edge too:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

The only trouble was that the PVA glue is very rigid so the edge of my book doesn’t feel soft any more. The rest of it is fine though!

Step 4: Pierce some holes down the middle of your pages. There needs to be an odd number of holes, so start at the centre then work your way outwards, spreading them evenly:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 5: Use strong thread (I used upholstery thread) to sew a running stitch from the centre hole to the top hole, making sure you go in from the back of the spine, and leaving a tail of thread hanging out:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 6: Continue your running stitch from the top hole all the way to the bottom hole:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Then go back up to the middle hole and tie the tail to the end of the thread.

Step 7: I’ve sewn my pages in with jewellery clasps, because I want to be able to take them out and replace them when the pages get full. You can sew on jewellery clasps of your own, or you could glue the front and back pages to the inside of your covers, or you could tie them in with ribbons!

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 8: If you want a ribbon to wrap around your book, now is the time to sew it inside the back cover:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 9: Then cut a piece of cardstock a bit smaller than your inside back cover, and glue it in with some PVA glue mixed with water (1:1 ratio). This helps make the book a bit stronger. If you want you can add this inside the front cover too but I wanted mine to stay floppy:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 10: Stamp some happy images / words on the pages of your book:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

So that when your are filling it with your worries and dreams the pictures will lift your spirits:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

Step 11:  Decorate the front cover how you like – I used bonding interfacing to iron on a cloud, and added foam alphas and some beads. The beads did make it harder to write on the left hand pages when I first started the book though:

Cleanse My Mind Notebook Tutorial by Jennifer Grace

It does look suitably dreamy and inspiring by my bedside!

Be Inspired:

Make a book to write down random thoughts / ideas / worries

Use something silky or smooth on your next project

Sew on a few little beads

What do you think, might this help you sleep at night? If you do write your thoughts down before bedtime then make sure you don’t worry about punctuation and misspelling, just write a stream of conciousness as you think. It will cleanse your mind!

Remember that commenting on this post, and any other over this weekend, will count as another entry into the Grand Giveaway, but only if you’ve registered your interest in winning that prize right HERE!  {NOW CLOSED}

That’s all for tonight, sleep well and I’ll see you in the morning at 10am BST!

Jennifer x

  • Using jewellery clasps, FAB IDEA!!!!!!!!

    June 6, 2014 at 10:06 pm
  • love how you have attached the pages – so clever xx

    June 6, 2014 at 10:10 pm
  • Hmmmm …. this has really given me food for thought, because I do struggle with insomnia and once that mind starts racing … maybe if I could offload it all into a little book like this then I would be able to sleep. Thanks for another inspiring and informative post Jennifer – and sleep well! :o)

    June 6, 2014 at 10:11 pm
  • Sarah

    Gorgeous book and great ideas for decorating it, although I’m not sure a notebook by my bedside would be a good idea …. I’d probably end up writing “To do” lists!! lol! Can’t wait to see what’s in store for us tomorrow x

    June 6, 2014 at 10:13 pm
    • Frances

      Sarah I too am looking forward to what Jennifer has in store for tomorrow.

      June 6, 2014 at 11:15 pm
  • Patricia

    What a great book! I love the title!

    June 6, 2014 at 10:18 pm
  • I like how you’ve attached the pages, I wouldn’t have thought of that. Great little book x

    June 6, 2014 at 10:43 pm
  • oooh very clever Jennifer I think writing things down can definitely help clear the mind

    June 6, 2014 at 11:03 pm
  • I love the little kite stamp.

    June 6, 2014 at 11:08 pm
  • Lindsay

    These are so cute. I need to make a hundred of these. I never have enough little sketch/notebooks

    June 6, 2014 at 11:08 pm
  • Frances

    Such a lovely idea. I will definitely give your book a try. Love the sewing and the little kite. Writing always helps to soothe my soul.

    June 6, 2014 at 11:14 pm
  • Clever page attachment Jennifer – I like that it’s replaceable!

    June 6, 2014 at 11:31 pm
  • Heather Pham

    I love this tutorial. I’ve been trying to find the perfect book binding method for awhile now. I’ve got to try this.

    June 6, 2014 at 11:32 pm
  • I love this book. How creative and pretty.
    I have completed the blog hope.
    GREAT inspiration!

    Blessings ~~ dawn

    June 7, 2014 at 12:46 am
  • what a neat idea! I often lie awake at night with my mind thinking about a bazillion random things, so maybe I need to make myself a book like this!

    June 7, 2014 at 12:55 am
  • Margie

    Such a sweet little book! I love it!

    June 7, 2014 at 12:55 am
  • This might be helpful for me to download into before bed, and I have some lovely bits of fabric. Smart that you left the pages removable.

    June 7, 2014 at 1:17 am
  • Sleep tight Jennifer! I like your idea and the jewellery clasps are an inspired idea.
    My daughter loves satin so I might make her something like this.

    June 7, 2014 at 3:02 am
  • I think it’s a great idea to write things down before going to sleep. I keep little post it notes beside the bed to jot down notes of things I need to do or remember for the next day so I don’t worry about them all night. I typically do other journaling in the mornings during my quiet time.

    June 7, 2014 at 3:09 am
  • There’s a product called Fray Check I used to use for my dolls house makes, which may give you a less stiff finish. Frayed is a good look with denim though.

    June 7, 2014 at 8:26 am
  • Gorgeous book … But more than that I love the idea of getting rid of your worries

    June 7, 2014 at 8:35 am
  • What a god idea – as soon as my head hits the pillow just about everything starts swimming around in my head – might just give this a go 🙂

    June 7, 2014 at 8:36 am
  • mandysea

    What a lovely idea…. I think we all kinda forget to actually write with computers domineering our lives more and more…. this is a wonderful timely reminder. Love the thought of righting down how the day went – quite therapeutic perhaps!

    June 7, 2014 at 10:17 am
  • Jackie Edwards

    Super idea…love the way you have attached the papers!

    June 7, 2014 at 11:12 am
  • You’ve totally inspired me to make a journal of my own, Jennifer! I love how you attached your pages so they can be replaced once full. Genius!! 🙂

    June 7, 2014 at 11:40 am
  • Lovely journal 🙂

    June 7, 2014 at 11:44 am
  • I love the notebook…but like Sarah I think I’d end up with ‘to do’ lists!!

    June 7, 2014 at 2:29 pm
  • barbara macaskill

    What a great idea!! I love the jewelry clasp idea for the pages and the page sewing tutorial is fantabulous! Thank you for the inspiration!

    June 7, 2014 at 7:49 pm
  • There are so many great tips in this post. Thank you. It’s an excellent idea to keep a notebook by the bed. I often have my best ideas in dreams.

    June 7, 2014 at 10:04 pm
  • Gemma Steele

    Such an adorable little book! You are so talented!

    June 7, 2014 at 10:39 pm
  • What a great idea! I love how dreamy this looks!

    June 8, 2014 at 2:21 am
  • Jen

    I’ve never written down my thoughts before bed but I have made books. I actually took a book-making class in college- pretty cool. I love what you did with adding hooks to the pages so they can be removed and replaced.

    June 8, 2014 at 3:52 am
  • That’s totally awesome…so inspiring

    June 8, 2014 at 2:09 pm
  • Karen Schroeder

    I often have trouble getting to sleep…I’ll have to try this!

    June 8, 2014 at 7:46 pm
  • Jacqui

    This book if gorgeous. I used to try and write my thoughts ect down before bed but I found it sent my head spinning and I kept thinking of other things to write lol

    June 9, 2014 at 1:53 am
  • I often write things before I go to bed so I think I’ll have a go at making my own book. I love the jewellery clips – genius idea!

    June 9, 2014 at 11:27 am

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