Craft: How to Make Your Own Calligraphy Book

lifestylehobbies-me time

Most people enjoy arts and crafts. It just stresses me out. My perfectionist tendencies do not gel with the relaxation and calm nature of pottery or ceramics. I like precision and conciseness. What better art than calligraphy, which is all about neatness, perfection, and planning? So I took a calligraphy class, which also featured projects involving the making of books for your favorite poems or that you can dedicate to a child or parent.

How to Make Your Own Calligraphy Book


  • A piece of art paper for the outside cover—painted or bought (mine will be blue in the pictures)
  • Two pieces of cardboard or Davy board 7" x 5.5" (These will be the front & back cover)
  • Two pieces of cardboard or Davy board 3/4" x 5.5" (These will be the spine of the book)
  • Two flyleaf pages—most people prefer to use a translucent paper, instead of a color
  • 8-10 pages of paper that you have written on, drawn on, or glued photos to (these will be used to fill your book)
  • Yard of string
  • A needle that is very durable and large
  • Hammer & nail
  • Glue stick


First, you need to cut the art paper and glue it to the cardboard covers and spines. The following picture demonstrates that your cover (outlined in Purple) should be 1" from all sides of your outer paper. The spine (pink) of your book should be 3/8" from the left side of your cover. Then the left side of your spine should be 1.5" from the paper. You are then going to glue the edges of your paper to the cover and spine. DO NOT glue the thin space between the spine and cover. This area allows for your book to open and close. Make sure that the side of your colored paper is face down while you are gluing. Repeat this step for the front and back cover of your book.

Once you have glued it, the inside of the covers should look like this:


Now it is time to sew the binding of the book. It is very important that you have the pages of your book in the correct order: Front cover, flyleaf, cover page, the body pages of your book, followed by another flyleaf, then back cover. You are going to assemble your book and wrap masking tape around it. The tape will hold it in place while you hammer holes into the spine (which should be on the left side). You will be creating five holes into the spine. The first hole is 1/2" from the bottom, the next is an 1" above the first hole, then next is 1" above that, etc. Now it's time to thread your needle and begin sewing. There are many ways you can sew the book. In my pictures, I have used Japanese bookbinding.

Remember to always pull your string tight when you go through the holes, otherwise your book will not be very durable. Also, don't be afraid to start over. You won't damage anything by doing so. Once you have finished sewing, you are done! A finished book will look somewhat like this, depending on your own personal style. FYI whoever the recipient of your book is, let them know to not place the book in direct sunlight or it will bubble.

What is your favorite homemade project?

Photos courtesy of Marissa Huntsman.

Featured image courtesy of Flickr.

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