How to bind a book with ribbon

Written by andrea griffith
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How to bind a book with ribbon
Bind your homemade books with simple, yet elegant, ribbon. (Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images)

Ribbon seems to add a bit of elegance and whimsy to almost anything. Create that same chic feeling when it comes to binding a book. Whether it's a homemade picture book or photo album, school book project, scrapbook or other fun project, keep pages neatly bound with ribbon. When choosing your ribbon, look for satin, organza or other soft ribbons. Hard ribbons, such as grosgrain, paper or wired ribbons, can be too stiff and may tear your pages.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • 3-hole punch
  • 2 yards of ribbon, 1 inch wide
  • Scissors
  • Seam sealer

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Instructions

    Three-Hole Bind

  1. 1

    Slide the pages of your book into a 3-hole punch. Push down on the arm of the punch to put three even holes into the pages. For a book with many pages, you may have to punch only 10 pages at a time to avoid jamming the punch. For hard cover books, see the "Tips" section.

  2. 2

    Thread the ribbon through the bottom hole of the front of the book, pulling the ribbon out through the back. Loop the ribbon back up through the middle hole in the back of the book, and pull it through to the front of the book. Tie the two ribbon ends into a bow.

  3. 3

    Thread the ribbon through the top hole of the front of the book, pulling the ribbon out through the back. Again, loop the ribbon up through the middle hole in the back of the book, pulling it through to the front of the book. Tie the two ribbon ends into a bow.

  4. 4

    Cut the excess ribbon ends off. Brush on a layer of seam sealer to prevent the ribbon from fraying. Find seam sealer at any arts and crafts or fabric store.

    Two-Hole Bind

  1. 1

    Slide the pages of your book into a 2-hole punch. Push down on the arm of the punch to put two even holes into the top and bottom of the pages.

  2. 2

    Insert the ribbon down the bottom hole. Then, thread the ribbon up through the top hole.

  3. 3

    Tie the two ribbon ends together into a knot along the edge of the top cover of the book.

  4. 4

    Cut the excess ribbon ends off. Brush on a layer of seam sealer to prevent the ribbon from fraying.

    Seven-Hole Bind

  1. 1

    Slide the pages of your book into a 7-hole punch. Push down on the arm of the punch to put seven even holes into the edges of the pages.

  2. 2

    Insert the ribbon through the bottom hole of the front book cover. Pull the ribbon through the bottom hole of the back book cover so there is an even amount of ribbon on both sides of the book. To clarify, the ribbon end pulled through the front book cover will be referred to as "Ribbon A," and the ribbon end pulled through the back book cover will be referred to as "Ribbon B."

  3. 3

    Crisscross the ribbons to make an "X" along the binding. Insert Ribbon A through the second to last hole on the back book cover and pull through the front book cover. Then, insert Ribbon B through the second to last hole on the front book cover and pull through the back book cover.

  4. 4

    Crisscross the ribbons again along the binding. Insert Ribbon A through the third to last hole on the back book cover and pull through the front book cover. Then, insert Ribbon B through the third to last hole on the front book cover and pull through the back book cover. Continue to do this until you have reached the top of the punched holes.

  5. 5

    Tie both ribbon ends into a bow along the side of the binding. Or, you can thread Ribbon B through the very top hole on the front book cover so that both Ribbon A and Ribbon B are on the front of the book. Tie the ribbon ends into a bow, cut off any excess ribbons, then brush on a seam sealer to prevent the ribbon ends from fraying.

Tips and warnings

  • To punch holes into a hard cover book, place a sheet of paper that has been punched with the 3-hole punch on top of the cover. Trace each hole with a pencil. Drill a hole into each traced hole with a drill bit the same size as, or close to the same size as, the traced hole.
  • Never heat seal the ends of organza ribbon, as organza is extremely flammable.

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