WELCOME TO THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO CREATING YOUR GRIMOIRE AND BOOK OF SHADOWS SERIES – PART 2 (B)
DIY fabric spiral refillable Grimoire or Wiccan Book of Shadows
The most common barrier to starting a Grimoire, Wiccan Book of Shadows, or spiritual journal is the fear of messing up. So the ability to remove or rearrange pages is very appealing! Which is why I wanted to add a few options in this series that you could create!
I personally love spiral bound books because they lay flat. Which makes them easier to write on, work from, and reference. I saw this beautiful video on YouTube on how to make a refillable spiral journal. I thought it would be fun to give it a try and include it in this Grimoire series.
- Hardcover book with good quality covers (I got mine from the thrift store) OR cardboard cut to your choice of size
- Paper you’d like to use for your pages. I used black mixed media paper by Strathmore I purchased at Michaels or you can also buy on Amazon here (affiliate link)
- Fabric of choice – personally I’d avoid anything too stretchy because it can be difficult to sew and fit properly. You could also reuse some clothes or jeans you planned on throwing away. Maybe even an old pillowcase with a cute design.
- Thread that matches your fabric
- 16 – 18 gauge wire – you can buy this online or at most craft store. BUT did you know most hardware stores carry it for MUCH cheaper?
- Wire cutter
- Needle nose pliers (not needed but they keep your fingers from getting sore when bending all that wire)
- Heavy-duty hole punch (I got mine at Michael’s and it also applies eyelets, you can get the same one on Amazon here (affiliate link) (If you chose to use cardboard for the book cover, you can probably use a regular hole punch)
- Eyelets – mine are 5/32″ and honestly are a touch small (see What I Would Do Differently section below)
- Exacto knife, scissors, rotary trimmer, or a paper trimmer of choice (I’ve had mine for years and is similar to this one you can find on Amazon (affiliate link)
STEP BY STEP INSTRUCTIONS
Initially, I planned to use some sort of burlap, drop cloth, or natural fiber fabric as well, but I already had this turquoise fabric in my supply closet and it really stood out to me.
It was basically begging me to be made into a journal cover! I used cotton quilting fabric (2 fat quarters) I’d previously purchased from Joann’s fabric. One for the front and one for the back.
I decided to use another thrifted book for my front and back covers. However, you could also use cardboard for yours as Dinlife did in her video.
If you’d like to see how I dissected my thrifted book, check out this video I created for a DIY Thrifted and Dollar Store Grimoire or Wiccan Book of Shadows.
First I measured the fabric ½ inch larger than my book cover for seam allowance. (see What I Would Do Differently section below)
Next, I doubled the width of the cover and added another ½ inch. This made it so I only needed to sew 3 sides of the fabric cover.
Place the fabric with the right (pretty) sides facing each other.
Personally, I like to pin them together to hold the fabric in place. I love my pincushion! My mom used it all the time when I was a kid and when she bought a new one for herself, she let me have this one! It’s a little tomato and so cute!
Now sew together two sides of the fabric cover. Leave one side open so you can slide the book cover in. Don’t forget to backstitch the beginning and end for added strength.
Trim off excess fabric, but be careful not to cut the stitches!! Press stitches with an iron to keep those edges pretty!
Flip the fabric right side out and place your book cover inside! I like to press with an iron one more time.
Now we’ll sew up the last side by hand. Grab some matching thread, add a knot to the end of your thread, and stitch it closed.
I wasn’t super concerned with matching my fabric when I was sewing the inside (hence why I used white thread). However, once I started sewing the outside section by hand I used matching thread.
Ok, now I’m going to make my hole punch template. If you’d like more detailed instructions on how to make this, check out my last video here.
I marked roughly the halfway point, and then 2 inches in from the top and bottom. Feel free to adjust this according to the size and shape of your covers. You could even add more or fewer holes! (see What I Would Do Differently section below)
Now I used my heavy duty hole punch to create the holes. If you used cardboard you should be able to use a regular hole punch.
Next, I added an eyelet to each hole. (see What I Would Do Differently section below)
I was so excited to use black mixed media paper for this! I’ve always wanted a book with black paper and this matched so well with the cover I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.
I chose this size paper because I only needed to cut the pages in half and it gave me 30 pages for my book. Remember, you can add more or less paper, but this was perfect for me because the pages are VERY thick.
Cut paper to fit your covers. I recommend at least ½ inch shorter than your cover on each side the help keep the edges protected. Plus it looks nicer.
Next, I altered my hole punch template a bit to fit the smaller pages.
Ok now for the spiral binding!
Sorry, I didn’t take any photos of me making the spiral binding because I got too involved in the process….BUT…..
I just grabbed some wire my husband had in his gaming/craft room. I would say it’s about 16-18 gauge wire.
The exact measurements are going to vary a bit depending on the size of your covers, but I’ll walk you through what I did.
First, using a wire cutter, snip your wire 5 – 6 lengths of your book. When in doubt, OVERESTIMATE because you can always cut the excess away.
I used some needle nose pliers to save my fingers. Place the wire at the top of the book and make your first bend at the first hole. Now measure out the length your spiral needs to be. Mine is 5 inches.
Then bend. It’s important that you make this bend tight because it will need to go through your book holes.
Measure again to the next hole and bend.
Matching the spot to the holes is imperative! It’s very difficult to correct after the fact. I ended up having to scratch my first spiral binding and do it again.
Bend the wire at the end of your book.
Now we’ll use the excess to make our binding more sturdy by winding it back through. Bend back the end piece to keep it from snagging.
Place the pages through the binding. Then the back cover, then the front cover.
Bend back each spiral and align with the holes.
For future reference, if you want to remove or add pages, just bend back each spiral and rearrange!
WHAT WOULD I DO DIFFERENTLY?
If I was to make this again (which definitely will). Here’s what I would do differently:
- I would allow myself more fabric for the seam allowance. Especially for the section I stitched by hand. Honestly, I made it much harder on myself than I needed to.
- Make sure the part I stitched by hand was at the bottom of the book, not the top.
- An inch deep for the holes it a bit much and I wouldn’t do that again. ½ inch would be better and require less wire.
- I would not use eyelets for the holes. It doesn’t allow the binding to move very easily. Instead, I would stitch on the inside of each hole to keep it from fraying and to give it a more polished look. As a matter of fact, I’ll probably go back and do that on this one. I’m thinking of black thread!
Comment below with any questions you’d like me to answer in this Grimoire and Wiccan Book of Shadows series and I’ll be sure to include them!
Hopefully, THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO CREATING YOUR GRIMOIRE AND BOOK OF SHADOWS SERIES will help you get started!
- Part 1 – What is a Grimoire or Book of Shadows? What’s the difference between them and their history?
- Part 2 – Choosing Your Book Format and Paper
- Part 2 (A) – DIY Thrift and Dollar Store Grimoire or Wiccan Book of Shadows
I hope you found this helpful and inspiring! Lots of love to you all and remember as always….