Behind-the-Scenes: My Recipe Book!

Updated: Dec 2, 2019

I'm so excited about my latest personal project: I bound a recipe book to keep all of my favorite recipes in!

I've been using a recipe box FOREVER, but currently it's overflowing with good recipes, and I hate how messy it looks! I was about to purchase a second one, when I realized that I actually hate digging through all those index cards, especially looking for that ONE recipe that got mis-filed!

Once I had this realization, I asked myself what my favorite place for recipes is....and I instantly knew that I absolutely adore opening a book! So I decided to make my own [empty] recipe book, to fill with all those favorites that we always pull up on Pinterest, or dig out of the recipe box and forget to file back in place, or that are sitting in my email archives, etc.

The first thing I did was design a page layout that I liked (shoutout to Principesca on Creative Market for the awesome graphics!). Then I printed, folded, and grouped them into folios (nested groups of pages) for sewing.

Then I punched each folio, and began stitching them together (this is easily one of my favorite parts...I love sewn bindings!)

Then begins alllll the gluing. First, I put a couple coats of PVA glue on the text block binding and let it dry well. Then, I added a cover page to the front and back, and then some extra reinforcement to the spine....and let all of that dry well!

(PVA glue is a must, because it's so flexible after it's dry)

Once the text block is done, it's time to make the cover!

First, I picked up some really adorable fabric from Hobby Lobby, and made my own book cloth from it. Then, I cut covers and a spine to size from book board and covered them in the fabric.

(this is when my careful hoarding of tissue paper from gifts FINALLY pays off haha!)

(If you're looking for a less expensive alternative to book board, you can also recycle the chip board backs of notepads, like the marker pad backs below! I do this all the time....the only downside is your covers may have a slight warp to them, rather than being 100% flat. This doesn't bother me on most of my personal projects, so for me it's a great way to recycle!)

Finally, it was time to assemble! First, I glued the back cover of my text block to the back cover, and then moved on to glue to the front.

Then, back in my book press to dry for a day or two!





The waiting is the hardest part!





​​When I came back, I opened my book press to reveal the finished result!!

This was my first attempt at hardcover case binding, and I'm very happy with the results! I owe a BIG thanks to Sea Lemon on YouTube (if you're interested, I've included links to her tutorials below), because I definitely could not have made this so confidently without her videos.

Of course, I immediately began filling in some recipes and then had to try out using my new recipe book by baking some chocolate chip muffins! 😉 If you'd like your own handmade recipe book, then mark your calendar! I'm currently tweaking this design to sell in my shop, so check it out after April 1st to order your own!

Sea Lemon Tutorial Links:

DIY Book Cloth for Bookbinding

DIY Hardcover Book | Case Bookbinding Tutorial

DIY Text Block | Case Bookbinding Tutorial

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