Albert Einstein once said, “If a cluttered desk is the sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign of?”

Well, the empty desk, Mr. Einstein, could be a sign of all those loose leaf papers given away to be bounded into a notebook.

Over a period of time, it naturally becomes difficult to organize and reorganize the stacks of loose leaf papers you spent so much time neatly writing notes on, or working out important office-related information.

They deserve the credit of hardbound or leather-bound support. But how does one go about it?

If you are looking for some creatively magnificent ways to turn your stacks of loose leaf papers into sophisticatedly bounded notebooks, then you have come to the right place.

How To Bind A Loose Leaf Paper To Make A Notebook

Check These High Quality Loose Leaf Papers

Sure, taking the stack of loose leaf papers to a stationery shop and asking a professional to do it is an easy way to go about it… but what if you could give a personalized appeal to the intimacy of your notes?

After all, they are your notes and deserve to be as outlandish as notes can get. Am I right?

In case you do not know what is loose leaf notebook paper, then put on your reading glasses and read on.

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What is loose leaf notebook paper?

Loose leaf notebook paper is a type of paper that is not bound and is loosely used for various purposes such as taking notes, homework, and assignment, sketching and drawing, and other office-related work. It has pre-punched holes which make binding easier and can be easily organized onto a ring binder.

Now, let’s talk about the different ways in which you can do some DIYs and give your creativity a boost when binding loose leaf papers to make a notebook.

How to bind loose leaf papers into a notebook at home, hassle free?

Yes, you heard it. There are plenty of ways to bind loose leaf papers into a notebook with materials easily available at home. So, suit up. You are about to go on a paper chase!

Materials required:

Here is all that is needed for you to go on your creative sojourn of turning loose leaf papers into a DIY personalized notebook:

  • Craft Glue. Any adhesive would do as it will be applied on the loose leaf papers temporarily before the actual binding takes place.
  • Paper clips. Do get at least half a dozen of those, preferably more as these will be used to hold the loose leaf papers together.
  • Fishing line nylon string along with a needle. You can use any other alternative string of your choice as well. However, fishing line nylon string is recommended as it does not break easily and is thus resistant to wear and tear.
  • A few cotton buds which will be used to apply glue onto the paper.
  • Soft cardboard, or a plastic sheet. You can use the old plastic folders or the manila folders as they are flexible yet robust and would make the perfect book covers.
  • And last but not the least, the stacks of loose leaf papers that are yet to be bound.


  • An electric hand drill with a 1-mm drill bit.

Caution: If you have never used this tool before, then you might want to call a handyman as this is a powerful tool and should be used with utmost caution to avoid any damage.

Let’s talk binding:

Now that you have gathered all of these materials, you would obviously want to know how to put them together for a DIY notebook. And here’s how:

  • Collect all the sheets that you need to bind and align the pages properly in order to ensure no loose leaf paper is out of place.
  • Use paper clips to hold the papers together, clip them on that edge of the loose leaf papers that you are going to bind. This will provide you with a firm spine of the side that is to be bounded. Use a generous amount of glue on the spine, and use the cotton buds to spread it. Now, leave the glue for drying overnight.
  • Remove the paper clips when you are sure the glue has thoroughly dried. Do ensure that the loose leaf papers stay and stick together before proceeding to the next step.
  • The next step is optional, and can be skipped if you already have sufficient pre-punched holes on your stack of loose leaf papers.
  • Now, use a pencil to make a mark along the edge of the now glued spine at a distance of 1cm. This is where a hole is to be drilled. Repeat the process for the entire edge or spine of the glued loose leaf papers and space out each hole at about 2-cms from each other. Although, this step is subject to the number of holes present on your stack of loose leaf papers.
  • Upon completion, use the electric hand drill with a 1-mm drill bit and start drilling on the pencil markings that will now be replaced by holes for binding.

Caution: Again, if you do not know how to use the hand drill then either ask a handyman or the guy next door to help you out with it. It is necessary to be cautious while using an electric hand drill for matter-of-fact reasons, so be extremely careful when undergoing this step.

  • Now, use the fishing line nylon string and the needle and insert them through the holes of the glued loose leaf papers.
  • Pull out the stitches tighter so that the papers do not become loose. Finish the first step towards your personalized notebook by tying a knot at the end of stitching and trimming off the excess string.

Let’s talk book covers:

Get the plastic folders with the style and color of your choice. Ensure it is flexible, and use it to cover the notebook. It should be large enough to cover the front, back, and stitched edge of the book.

  • Trim out the excess sheet, and make a cover that fits the notebook.
  • Insert the loose leaf paper notebook into the folder and drill about 5 holes on the front and back of the folder. Ensure that these holes are aligned with the holes of your loose leaf papers.
  • Stitch the cover to the notebook through the holes on the papers as well as the folder using fishing line nylon string and a needle.
  • Fasten the string to give it a final stretch and ta-da! Your homemade DIY notebook made out of loose leaf papers is ready for use.

Simple book binding methods

If the above-mentioned technique was a tad bit too heavy for you, then don’t panic. There are various other ways through which you can easily bind loose leaf paper together to make a notebook. Here’s how:

Staple and Duct Tape Technique

I can try to infer what you might be thinking. Can we actually make a reliable loose leaf paper notebook out of just a stapler and a duct tape?

The answer to that, dear reader, is a magnanimous yes.

This is a highly recommended option for books that are not too thick. On the other hand, if you own a heavy-duty stapler then it would be a piece of cake to staple thicker stacks of loose leaf paper.

  • About half an inch from the binding edge of the assembled paper, start stapling the entire spine as per your choice and convenience.
  • Cut out a piece of duct tape about half an inch longer than the notebook.
  • Place half the tape on the binding edge of the loose leaf paper notebook thereby hiding the staple pins and wrap it along the edge as well as the back of the stack.
  • Apply pressure on the tape to ensure it is stuck perfectly, and trim off the excess tape using a pair of scissors.
  • You can also personalize the first and last loose leaf paper that you will use for this technique. A painting that you made, or a sketch would give it a personal touch. You can also use stickers, glitter and glam it up a bit.

Binder Clips

Another way of making a notebook out of loose leaf paper is via using binder clips. This is a surprisingly simple yet effective way of binding paper.

Depending on the size of the loose leaf paper and binder clips that you are using, keep in mind to bend them backwards such that you can easily open the notebook.

This is a handy method for making small-sized loose leaf paper notebooks.

Book Rings

Book Rings are easily available at any office supply store, and are not that heavy on your wallet.

Since loose leaf papers already come with pre-punched holes, all you have to do is buy the number of book rings you will need and lock them after inserting them through the holes.

This is a recommended method for thicker notebooks with sturdy pages. Locking the rings around the paper is a piece of cake.

The binding could be a little loose but is extremely convenient for when you have to take the pages out or reorganize or update the notebook.

Rubber Band and a Stick

A personal favorite, this method gives the loose leaf paper notebook a chic and stylish appeal.

And all that is required is a thick rubber band and any type of stick. For example, a twig from the park nearby, dowels, a wooden skewer, or even pencils!

Do keep in mind that the stick you get is either equal to or shorter than the length of the edge you need to bind. This is a preferable method for 2-holes or 3-holes punched loose leaf paper.

You can place one stick connecting the first two holes and the next stick connecting or kept in the middle of the latter two holes.

For 2-holes punched loose leaf paper, flip the stack over. Insert and thread one end of the rubber band at the top hole and the other end through the bottom hole. Now, flip the stack over to its front side and get your stick. You will see the rubber band ends popping out in the front. Put your stick through each end viola! Your personalized notebook is ready to be flanked with praise about how fabulous it looks.

Wire Bind

This is the most resorted to option by frequent loose leaf paper users, as it does not bite into their time.

All they have to do is go to a store and ask a professional to bind the necessary respective notebooks. This is an inexpensive and efficient way to go about making and binding notebooks. You can go for this option if you have a few stacks that need to be bounded, and they need to be bounded fast.

Videos that might help:

Thanks to technology, being in the 21st century welcomes utmost fascination at the simplest of things. Of course, there are online videos of people guiding you through the entire process of using loose leaf papers to make a notebook. All you need is 8 minutes (more or less) to imprint all of that knowledge for further use. So, here’s a selection of the easiest yet unique videos on how to make a notebook out of loose leaf paper.

Binding the loose leaf sheets using the Double Fan method

Binding loose leaf sheets using the double fan method

In this video, you will learn how to bind a loose leaf paper using an unbleached cloth, adhesive glue, sponge brushes and a few extra hi-tech devices such as a binding press, which you do not necessarily need unless you are stringent about the alignment.

Paper clips are a common alternative used instead of a bind press.

You will also learn how to compress the pages and using the glue in a modest yet long-lasting manner and some interesting facts about how you can make your work with loose leaf papers reliable.

DIY – Notebook: Japanese Book Binding || Back to School

DIY – Notebook: japanese bookbinding || Back to School

In this culturally diverse world, a little cultural fusion has only spurted our creativity.

Japan is renowned for its paper-related arts such as origami and of course, various styles of homemade notebook binding.

In this video, you will learn to channelize your artistic side onto a notebook with just a few materials namely – loose leaf papers, paperboard, bone folder, thread and needle, push pin, a ruler, and a pencil.

Although they only use normal A4 size sheets in the tutorial, they can be easily replaced with loose leaf paper thus making the process of binding even easier.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it called loose leaf paper?

Loose leaf paper is referred to as ‘loose’ leaf paper because it is not bound to any surface, it comes loose in sets and can be used for various other purposes; including drawing, arts and crafts, trigonometry, calculus and is a crucial office supply.
The term ‘leaf’ here is used in many languages to represent a sheet of paper. Loose leaf paper also comes with pre-punched holes, which makes organizing it and disintegrating it very easy.

How to bind loose leaf paper?

There are various ways to bind loose leaf papers and make them into notebooks. The most commonly used method is to go to a stationery shop, or a binding shop and seeking the help of a professional to do so. There are other DIY methods to make a loose leaf paper notebooks from easily accessible materials as well.

 What size is loose leaf paper?

Loose leaf paper comes in various sizes, but the standard size of purchase is 8 x 10.5 inches. Other sizes include A4, A5 and A6. The A6 loose leaf paper is commonly used for journaling, cataloging, and diary entry.


We have discussed in detail the various ways to bind loose leaf paper to turn it into a beautiful notebook.

You can use some of the methods described in this article to make a notebook for yourself or you can let your imagination drive you to do whatever you can do to make it as endearing as you want.

You can visit Wikipedia to learn more about bookbinding.

If you have found some newer ways to bind the loose leaf paper, you can leave the details in the comments below. We will include those suggestions when we next update this article on How To Bind Loose Leaf Papers To Make A Notebook?

If you love to draw, you can visit Drawings section and take printouts on a loose leaf paper and draw and color your favorite article.


Avni Deopura

Content Writer

An SEO Expert, a Prolific Content Writer, and a dreamer currently pursuing a postgraduate degree in Master of Science in Psychology from St. Joseph’s College of Arts and Science. She is working as a Content Producer and Social Media Analyst.

End of – “How To Bind Loose Leaf Papers To Make A Notebook?”

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