Fold a sketchbook in 4 easy steps

This simple sketchbook, that is made from one piece of paper, is super easy to make! It is one of my favorite sketchbooks to make, and to play in. You can customize it anyway you like! With just a few materials and few minutes, you can make this little sketchbook yourself!

What you will need

  • One sheet of paper; the larger your sheet, the larger the size of your sketchbook
  • Scissors or box cutter / paper knife
  • Straightedge; you’ll need this if you’re going to use a box cutter

You can use any piece of paper you like. For this step by step tutorial I used an A2 size piece of thick sketch paper that I already made marks on. I was going to use this paper as collage paper, but then decided to fold a sketchbook with it.

At the end of this tutorial I will also list some tips and ideas.

The steps

Step 1

Pull out a big sheet of your favorite drawing or painting paper. I used an A2 sheet of paper of 125gsm. If you want to use watercolors in your sketchbook, you might want to consider using a sheet of watercolor paper. But keep in mind that it gets harder to fold with heavier paper.

Fold in the middle lengthwise. Then fold both halves in the middle as well. You now have divided your paper into 4 equal pieces lengthwise (see last picture).

Step 2

Turn your sheet of paper 90 degrees, and repeat previous steps, but now widthwise. When you are done with this step, you’ll have divided your piece of paper in 16 pieces (rectangles if you have used a rectangle shape of paper).

Step 3

Fold the piece of paper open. Cut the paper like in the picture below for a portrait format sketchbook.

If you wish to have a landscape format sketchbook, you put the sheet of paper in landscape format in front of you (instead of portrait format like in the pictures) and make the same cuts, but then lengthwise.

Step 4

Now we are going to fold our sketchbook. In the video below you can see how I fold my sketchbook. Once your sketchbook is folded you can put it under a stack of books to flatten it.

Tips and ideas

  • Make a cover for you book with cardboard or a piece of paper. I like to make covers with tracing paper.
  • Use vintage paper for your sketchbook.
  • Glue vintage paper, pages out of vintage books, kraft paper, etc into your sketchbook.
  • Add extra folded pages to you sketchbook; Stephanie explains in this tutorial how you can hold the pages together with tread.
  • Dye your paper with natural dyes before making the sketchbook. The sketchbook you see in the first three pictures (at the top of this page) are dyed with avocado seeds.
  • Make marks on your sheet of paper before making the sketchbook.

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