DIY paper planner - with a cover

So. It took one day, and I had to make a cover. I couldn't help myself. Thankfully, I have more scrapbooking supplies lying around than I know what to do with, so it didn't take too long.

I wanted pockets. I wanted pseudo-lamination. I wanted something that could still flex backwards. No problem, right?

I used three 12×12 sheets of scrapbooking paper:

  • one was thinner and more decorative, it forms the outer cover/pockets, and is completely backed with clear contact paper.
  • the other two are thicker, card stock weight. They form the inner sleeves that hold the planner and whatever else I might tuck in there.

As I had no idea if it would work, and was kind of putting things together here and there in the house where I had room, I neglected to take work-in-progress photos. Don't hate me. I'll do what I can to describe what I did.

The planner, remember, is basically an 8.5×11” piece of paper folded in half, i.e. 5.5×8.5”. What I wanted at the end of the day was an outer jacket, with some pockets, that would form a sleeve for the planner I stitched together.

So I started with how to make the sleeve for the planner. I used two matching pieces of 12×12 paper, and folded each of them in half (6” wide). I trimmed each piece to 9” in height. I used a 2-3” wide piece of contact paper (centered) to cover the outside of each folded edge: these would be the outer edges of the cover. These two pieces lay side-by-side with the folded edges to the outside. I trimmed about 1/2” off the top layer for each piece to allow the planner to be added to the cover.

The inside of the cover

The outer/decorative cover is just one piece of 12×12 paper with contact paper stuck to the outside of it. I measured/folded the paper first to make sure it would fit properly around the heavier card stock, trimmed some corners, and then cut the contact paper to be slightly bigger than the folded footprint of the paper. The contact paper was applied only to this outer cover. The contact paper is wrapped around all of the edges and trimmed corners.

Once the contact paper was on the outer cover, I used glue to attach the inner sleeves to the outer cover. The only glued area is shown in the picture above, where the outer cover is folded over to the inside of the sleeve. This, in effect, creates four pockets: two on the outside edge, between the outer cover and the sleeve, and two in the center, where the planner will tuck in.

Edge view -- pockets! All together now!

It works pretty well! It still lies flat, still bends open backwards, and looks very tidy closed.

cover made from 2 12x12 scrapbook pages

Now to see if all this work makes it through the new-planner honeymoon period. I'll let you know in a few months..