How to Bind Magazines Into a Book

Written by samantha lowe
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How to Bind Magazines Into a Book
Binding magazines into a book is a good way of organising and archiving them. (book image by kasiap from

Combining magazines altogether to make a book is a good means of organising and keeping magazines for years to come. They can be bound in a number of ways, from glue to string, and professional hard covers can be added to make the book more durable and archival. Binding several magazines together works the best on magazine sheets that lay flat when the bound reading material is just sitting on a flat surface, these usually already have a slight spine.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 4 magazines
  • Ruler
  • Craft knife
  • Archival glue
  • Pencil
  • 4 books, larger than 8 1/2-inch by 11-inch
  • Bookbinding tape
  • Bookbinding awl
  • Binding needle
  • Binding thread
  • Decorative paper
  • Scissors

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  1. 1

    Remove the existing covers on the magazines. This can be done by holding the magazine firmly in one hand, while grasping both the front and back covers with the other hand and pulling downwards to remove it from the spine.

  2. 2

    Place the ruler 1/4 inch away from the spine. Press the craft knife against the ruler edge closest to the spine and, using pressure to insert the blade into the pages, remove the spine. This technique can work on both stapled and glued spines of magazines.

  3. 3

    Remove the advertisements from the sheets, unless you desire to bind them as well.

  4. 4

    Repeat steps 1 to 3 for all the magazines.

  5. 5

    Group the pages, in order of the magazine, into 32-page sections. This will keep the book more durable in the end.

  6. 6

    Glue every page in the section together on the side that was originally bound. Place a small amount of glue along the very edge and place the next sheet in order against it. Repeat this with all the sheets in the section, being careful that each glued area is only about 1/8-inch wide.

  7. 7

    Repeat this step for all the sections in all the magazines. Before the first page of the first section and after the last page of the last section, add one scrap piece of paper, the same height and width, into the binding.

  8. 8

    Place the magazine sections on a flat surface and place large books on them to keep them pressed while drying. Dry the pages for 24 hours. Write a small number on the bottom of each section so that they can be kept in order.

  9. 9

    Stack the sections of all four magazines in the order you desire them in the book. Make holes with the book binding awl 1/4 inch from the glued edge at 1/4-inch intervals along the side. Thread your needle and sew 1/4 inch from the glued edge, 1/4 inch away from the bottom initially, piercing through all sections, and then wrapping around the edge of the book to come back to the original piercing, and make another insertion 1/4 inch up. Repeat these sewing steps until the final piercing, cut off the excess thread, and glue both bottom and top holes in order to keep the thread in place. Allow to dry for 24 hours.

  10. 10

    Run the book binding tape down the spine, sticky side against the spine, using enough to easily cover it and wrap around the edge by 1/4 inch, covering the thread holes.

  11. 11

    Measure the dimensions of the book, adding 1/2 inch to the height and 1/4 inch to the width of the book. Add 1/4 inch to the width of the spine, and 1/2 inch to the height.

  12. 12

    Cut the binding board into three sections -- front cover, back cover, and spine -- according to the measured dimensions and added heights and widths.

  13. 13

    Spread glue all over the blank piece of paper on the front and all over the piece of paper in the back, with the glue on the outside of both. Firmly place one of the covers on the front, with one edge aligned with the spine and the other edges overhanging the sides. Do the same with the cover on the back.

  14. 14

    Place the cover board on the spine, gluing the edges to the other cover boards.

  15. 15

    Place the decorative paper on a flat surface and place the book, open, so the cover and back are flat, on the surface as well. Trace around it by 1/2 inch. Cut out this section of decorative paper.

  16. 16

    Cover the plain side of the decorative paper with glue. Wrap it around the entire cover and spine, plain side against the board and design side out, cutting off excess so only 1/4 inch will wrap in to the book. Fold the edges over so they sit on the inside cover. Smooth out any air bubbles. Allow it to dry for 24 hours.

Tips and warnings

  • Personalisation, such as the name of the magazines and the volume of your book, can easily be created on the computer and glued to the spine and front of the book.

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