Wednesday, June 23, 2010

How to make a post bound album

Post bound albums are great for scrapbooks, but sometimes I can't find one that matches the theme I'm interested in.  I'll show you how to make your own album sized to fit your page protectors.

First, measure your page protectors.  The cover will be 0.25" larger on both sides than the page protector.  My page protectors are about 6.25" x 7.25", so my cover will measure 6.5" x 7.5".  My pencil drawings help me to visualize the project along the way.  I usually exaggerate the difference between the height and width to make it easier to visualize the final orientation of the pieces.

Cut two covers, and two spines (1" x 6.5") from a sturdy piece of bookboard or dense cardboard.  After I've cut the first strip of board 6.5 inches wide, I use the finished piece to act as a guide for the rest of the cutting.  This makes the pieces uniform, and saves a bit of time with lining the ruler up.

I like to lay my pieces out at this point.

Punch holes in one spine to correspond with the holes on your page protectors.  My picture shows me checking my pencil marks before I punch the holes.  In some of these photos, you will see that I use a pencil to mark things as I go along.  The confusing thing about post post albums is that the spine will fold over and be on top of the cover when it's finished.  Keeping track of the pieces is easier if you make notes to yourself in pencil.

Use the first spine as a template to create holes in the second spine.  Remember that the outsides of the spines will be touching when the book is assembled, so be sure to orient the spines with the tops matching and outsides touching.

Cut paper to cover the outside of the book.  I like to have 0.75" overlapping on each edge, so the height of my paper will be 1.5" taller than the height of the cover.  In this case, I'm going to use two different papers on the cover, so I'm going to draw a line on the front where I want the first paper to end.

Apply glue to the cover, spread with a brush, and place the paper on the cover.

Apply glue to the raw edge of the board, and lay the second piece of paper on the spine edge.  When cutting your pieces, make sure that there is at least 0.75" over on each edge.

To place the spine, use an acrylic ruler to butt up against the cover.  Apply glue to the spine, and butt up against the ruler.  Make sure there is 3/8" between the spine and cover.  This will allow for good folding when the book is finished.  This assumes that your cover pieces are about 1/8" thick.  The space between the spine and the cover should be a little  more than twice the thickness of the board for this type of book.

Punch holes in the red paper.  If you don't do this now, you may lose your holes!  I like to use an anywhere hole punch with a tapered end - my favorite is by Making Memories.  This makes the holes a bit larger to accommodate my posts.  This will take quite a few passes, so be patient!

Cut the corners off the paper, leaving about 1/8" between the edge of the board and where you cut.  Use a bone folder to crease along all edges and fold the paper up over the board.  Need more details on how to cover book board?  Check out my earlier tutorial (but ignore the part with the style stone!). I also do a practice folding with the spine to get it loosened up a bit.

Cover the inside with a piece of paper.  When laying the paper over the "gutter" between the spine and cover, use your thumb to gently press the paper into the gutter.  This will help the cover fold nicely later.

From the front side, punch holes with the anywhere hole punch through the inside paper.  If this is too cumbersome, you can also use a regular hole-punch.

With the scraps, create a card and step back to admire your work!

Post bound book and card

This album is a friendship book for a friend who is leaving our community.  I've made two similar books for two different friends.  The pages in the book were created by our friends so that they have a memory of us when they move.

Inside page of post bound book

Let your friends know how special they are by creating a gift for them.  This one is definitely from the heart.  All pictured paper and stamps from Club Scrap.


  1. You always do a great job on your tutorials. You make this look so easy, that even I will give it a try!!

  2. This is an amazing diy tutorial. I'm with megs; you really make it so easy to follow and understand! Thanks.

  3. Wow! What a fabulous tutorial! I've definitely got to give this a try.

  4. Good tutorial, and beautiful results! I never tried a post bound book before. Your tutorial makes appetite to try one day :-)



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