Paper Bag Collection Book

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By General Crafts Contributor Michelle

Make fun books to hold notes, items collected from nature walks, and more!

Make a fun little collection book full of pockets for your kiddos, or yourself, to store all sorts of bits and bobs in. This fast and easy project could be great to do with the kids, or as an interesting scrapbook/journal project for yourself.

Here’s what you’ll need to make your own:

To begin, count out 3-5 bags–if you use more bags, the book gets too thick to easily bind. Cut the bags in half. You will now have pages with folded flaps on one side, and open on the other. And pages that are open on both ends.

Use your hole punch to make a set of holes on the edge of each page, about 1/4-1/2 inch from the edge. Punch the pages with the folds, on the closed edge with the fold. Punch the pages that are open on both edge, on the cut edge–it doesn’t really matter which edge you punch on this kind of page, I just prefer the rough manufactured edge to show when the book is finished, hence hole punching on the cut edge.

Using a whole bag as a guide, lay it on top of your cardstock, and cut a cover for your book. Leave a 1/2-inch or so on the top and bottom edge, and a little more on the ends. Measure with your ruler, and use your pencil to draw a cutting line. Cut out.

Fold the cover paper in half, and use one of your pages to mark where the holes should be on the cover. Line the inside paper up with the spine of the cover, mark your holes with the pencil, and then punch the holes in the cover.

Stack your pages up in the order you want them to be in the book, and then turn the stack over, because we’re going to create the book back to front. Cut a piece of jute, or other tying material, that is about 8-inches long. Fold it in half. Poke the folded end through one of the holes in the cover, from the front, to the inside. Poke another folded piece through the second hole, the same way.

Begin threading the loops through the holes in your pages, one page at a time. If you want the pages in a particular order, know we’re building this book back to front–so begin by threading the back page on first, and work to the front of your book.

Thread all your pages onto the loops in this manner.

Poke the loops through the holes in the back of the cover.

Cut your stick to fit the size of your book, and insert it into the loops on the back of your book.

Pull the strings on the opposite side of the book to snug the loops around the stick.

Tie large knots in the strings on the opposite side of the sticks, so they don’t pull through the holes. Trim the excess string.

Your book will have pages with small flaps, created from the folded bottom of the original bag.

Each page will open into a small pocket, perfect for slipping in small items like pictures, ticket stubs, feathers, pressed flowers–any little keepsake you want to keep safe.

These little books would be great for kids to use to make nature collections of pressed leaves, feathers, flowers, seeds. They could collect items, and then document their finds on the pages with drawings and notes.

How about making one for yourself to use as an art journal, keepsake scrapbook, or small photo album? What else could you do with these neat little books?

Happy crafting!

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