JJ Crafts

Custom Vinyl Notebooks

My brother and his girlfriend both had their birthdays in January. With everything going on I was mega late with their presents but they have them now so I can show you all.

I bought plain blue and black notebooks a while ago from Hema, planning on customising them with some vinyl. This was the perfect opportunity. Both of them are going on a round the world trip in September so I went with a travel quote and decided to do them with reversible colours so they were linked.

Here’s the design that I made and cut in the vinyl after weeding and before being applied (I didn’t design the compass, just googled and picked one I knew would cut well):

And here they are with the colours of the compass switched and all finished:

The dark vinyl is navy blue which is a little darker on the black than I thought but it still shows up really well in the right light.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take into account the textured and shiny surfaces of the notebooks, so the vinyl isn’t stuck as securely as I’d hoped. This might have something to do with the vinyl itself as well. It’s quite thick and I don’t think the bonding is as strong as the normal stuff I use. But I had a bunch of colours in this one and they were the colours I had wanted to use.

Not completely happy with it, I decided to buy some notebooks that would let vinyl stick better. And I bought this pack of 5 Kraft notebooks from Muji. They’re only thin but the paper quality is actually much better than I’d expected.

Photo 14-02-2018, 3 11 24 pm

(There were five but I didn’t think to take a photo of the pack until I had used the two I wanted.)

I recut the vinyl, this time in navy and white, considering the sand colour wouldn’t have down up very well and this is attempt number two:

I’m still not certain they will stay stuck as I’m now thinking it might be more the vinyl than the surface. I have no idea if they will actually use them but it’s the thought that counts, even if they were a few weeks late too!  I really like the design as well, I think I might turn it into a simple little cross stitch. Watch this space. I need to find more things to stick vinyl onto because it’s really fun to design quotes and stuff, and also, weeding the vinyl (pulling away the waste vinyl from the design) is really satisfying.

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16 thoughts on “Custom Vinyl Notebooks”

    1. It is vinyl but it’s a different type of vinyl. I do have a bunch of heat transfer vinyl to use up as well though. I have used that for a bag before but finding nice but cheap tote bags online is a minefield! Maybe I should try to find some again….

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    1. Thank you!!! I don’t sell them, no. They’re just fun to make. I don’t really have the time to sell them alongside the cards i make. I design them on my computer and then send to my cutting machine.

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  1. Just an idea. If you’re worried about the vinyl peeling you could use the reverse as a stencil to paint the quote on the notebook. I did something similar with label paper for a project recently and it worked really well.

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    1. I’ve tried this with transfer tape before (less sticky than vinyl) and it worked well too but just the amount of energy and mess it creates isn’t worth it for me. I’m low enough on energy without getting paint involved in my small space! One day I will invest in a screen printing kit but it’ll have to wait until after I move next year I think.

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  2. Ah ha! The beauty of a cross stitch version is that it could be built into a fabric cover to go over any notebook of the right size and be used over and over again. Well done!

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