It's March! In just a few short weeks, the "official" first day of spring arrives – and, with it, fresh ideas and projects. To keep your family's lists and whims in check, try making a new notebook. This accordion-style craft is a great primer for beginning bookmaking for kids (and keeps their doodles safe and sound).
- Plain or lined paper (notebook or printer paper works well)
- Premium wrapping or scrapbook paper
- Empty cereal box
- Wrinkle-free glue stick
- Mod Podge
- Popsicle stick or bone folder (a hand tool used to fold/crease paper)
- Paper cutter or ruler for trimming paper
- Card stock
- Foam brush
- Wax paper
- Heavy book
- Hot glue and glue gun
- Cut the box apart and trim the front and back panels to 5.5-by-7.5 inches. Cut a stack of paper (amount up to you) to 5-by-7 inches. Cut two pieces of coordinating card stock to 5-by-7 inches, too.
- Cut two pieces of wrapping paper about 1 inch larger than all sides of the board. Apply a thin, even layer of glue to one side of the box. Center in the middle of the wrapping paper and press firmly. Turn over and smooth air bubbles with Popsicle stick. Let dry. Repeat for other cereal box panel.
- Fold the wrapping paper over around all four sides to create a corner guide. Trim paper away from each corner so each flap folds smoothly onto the cover; you don't want any bulk in the corners. Adhere paper to the cover with an even layer of glue.
- For the inside of the covers, apply a thin layer of Mod Podge to your card stock and adhere to the cereal box. Let dry. (Placing a heavy book on top is a good way to keep the pieces flat while drying.)
- To create the pages, alternate a line of glue on either side of your stack of paper – left, right, left, right, etc.
- Assemble by applying a thin line of Mod Podge around all four sides of the top piece of notebook paper. Press firmly to internal book cover. Repeat for bottom piece of notebook paper and back cover. Place a piece of wax paper in the front and back pages with a heavy book on top to dry.
- Finish by adding a 36-inch piece of ribbon or string to tie it shut. Hot-glue the center of the ribbon to the front of the book so it can be wrapped around it several times. A large rubber band works, too!