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How to Fold a Booklet

handmade folded paper bookTwo years ago at the Wild Goose Creative New Years celebration, Allison from Igloo Letterpress taught me an imminently useful skill: how to fold a four page booklet from a single piece of paper. Since then, I have transformed paper into books for Lil to make into dinner menus, sticker stories, and hand drawn comics. At one point she even labeled the bindings with letters like at the library to organize her homemade books.

Now I pass on the method to you. Create books for your kids to decorate, for a clever multi-page valentine card, or to display your next dinner party menu.

How to Fold a Book from Paper

First, make a hill fold in the center of the longest side of the paper. Fold the two short edges to meet the top of the hill, making two valley folds.

make a paper book folds

Unfold and bisect the short side with a fold. Now your paper should have eight even sections.

make a paper book: eight sections

Re-fold the initial hill fold and cut the bisecting fold from the center through to the next valley fold.

make a paper book: cut the middlemake a paper book - folded and cut

Stand the paper up with the cut on top. Pinch together the ends to form three of the 'pages'.

make a paper book - stood upmake a paper book - fold pages together

Wrap the last page around the others and crease the binding well. Now you have four pages.

folded paper book Decorate your book as you wish!

child decorating a handmade paper book

Pro Tips:

  • At age five, Lil can fold a book like this if I help her but her edges and folds are not even enough to make a perfect book. Your child may be more adept and/or less of a perfectionist than mine.
  • Lil figured out pretty quickly that if you make two books and glue the back of one to the front of the other, you have a bigger book.
  • An 8 1/2" x 11" piece of paper makes a 2 3/4" x 4 1/4" inch book.
  • Paper thicker than card stock gets difficult to fold and manage. Plain copy paper works very well.
  • When you are sufficiently addicted to book making, head over to Igloo Letterpress in Worthington Ohio to learn how to make different kinds of books. Or maybe you'll want one to purchase one of their BIY (bind it yourself) or no sew refillable books from the Etsy store?

Added to Simple Lives Thursday.