Easy Twine Binding

The twine binding technique is a fast and easy method of creating a beautifully bound junk journal in a very short time. It also allows you to move and replace pages if you choose. In addition, the twine adds a nice decorative element to the spine of the journal.

When I make a junk journal, I start by choosing all the pages I'm going to include in it. I like to use a combination of old and new. This includes vintage sheet music, magazine pages that catch my attention, scrapbook paper, printables - just to name a few.

Junk Journal

To bind your junk journal you'll need strong twine (can be linen thread, baker's twine, crochet cotton). To know how much of it you'll need for wrapping, decide how many signatures your book will have (a signature is a booklet of pages). Then, take your twine and run it the length of your book cover. You'll need that length times the number of signatures, multiplied by two because you're actually wrapping the twine completely around the spine. Add a few more lengths for tying off.

In other words, let's say the junk journal contains 7 signatures:

  • 7 signatures x 2 = 14
  • 14 x height of book cover
  • plus 2 to 3 lengths for tying off

That's the total amount of twine required.

To avoid your signatures getting loose over time, your twine should be tied off with a snug double (or triple) knot. Then, you can add embellishments such as a flower and/or button on top of that.

Twine BindingCover Image from 'Peculiar Ancestry'

The cover can be made from an old book, a cereal box, chipboard, file folders, anything you want. However, since the spine is what will support all the wrapped twine, it should be reinforced. This can be done with a strip of chipboard glued to the inside of the spine. Cut it the same height as your cover and about 1/8” thinner than the actual spine so that it sits inside it without creating 'bulk' in the fold.

Vertical Elastic ClosureImage From 'Miss Lady Fay'

Junk journals often end up very chunky with an 'alligator mouth' that results from all the pages and embellishments.

Adding a closure will help keep things from falling out and keep the book closed. Find inspiration for junk journal closures here.

Twine Binding Tutorial

In the tutorial below, I recycled the front and back covers from an old book. The soft spine was removed and replaced with a strip of bookcloth and heavy chipboard. This allowed me to make the spine the exact thickness I wanted.




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