Sunday, January 20, 2013

Fabric Covered Binder Tutorial

I had three binders that were the same size but did not match. A bit of fabric and spray adhesive were the perfect solution to give these binders a fresh look.





  • Fabric
  • Spray Adhesive (I used Tree House brand from Hobby Lobby, it worked well but next time I’m going to try to find the 3M brand)
  • Binder
  • Martha Stewart vertical bookplates
  • Cardstock paper that matches fabric (Sprapbook section)
  • Tools: Scissors, Rotary Cutter, Cutting Mat, Paper or sheet to protect area from adhesive spray


Step 1: Iron fabric then lay binder over a section. Cut the fabric around the binder leaving 1/2”-1” hangover. Depending on the placement of your binder rings you may need to cut an extra strip for the center. Rotary cutting this is much easier than using scissors, but you can do it either way.

Step 2: Lay your binder/fabric on a surface that you don’t mind getting adhesive on. I used a large roll of pink paper.


Step 3: If you need to use a center strip apply it first. Spray adhesive on the wrong side of fabric then press and smooth in down beside the binder rings.

Step 4: Apply the fabric to outside of binder. Lay fabric wrong side up, spray adhesive to the wrong side of your fabric then place your binder in the center. Press the center of the binder to the fabric then lay down each binder flap. Check and make sure all wrinkles are smoothed out.


Step 5: Beginning in the center by the binder clips fold in fabric and glue edges to binder. Work your way to the end. Then fold in your side edges. You may need to apply more adhesive during this process.


Step 6: Cut cardstock to size and spray adhesive one side, then lay over the binder inside covering the fabric edges. Press everything firmly and let dry overnight.


Step 7: Add your bookplate to the spine of binder.


For the black binder I first covered it in white contact paper, so that the black wouldn’t be noticeable through the fabric.


  1. The look great. My daughter was just asking me how she could do this for her binders for nursing school. Can't wait to show her.

  2. The look great. My daughter was just asking me how she could do this for her binders for nursing school. Can't wait to show her.

  3. This is a great idea. Thank you for providing the tutorial. I follow Joanna Lund recipes and want to do a recipe book of our favorite ones. I think this will make it so much easier to plan our meals. Now to just find the time to type them all up!

  4. Thanks for posting - I found your blog through a google search. I wonder how well does this hold up? I am a homeschooler and will be accessing my binders daily. Lots of handling!

  5. The adhesive is super strong. Took me forever to get it off my hands. Don't see any problems with it coming loose with frequent use.

  6. I'd like to try this to some of my genealogy research notebooks/binders. Thanks for sharing this idea..looks exactly like we used to cover our old notebooks in school but we used either a store paper grocery bag or manila craft paper that is same color as brown paper bag. I had forgot all about how to do this till I saw your tuitorial.

  7. Simply awesome. Astounded by these pretty designs. Love them.

    Recipe cards


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