Back to School T-Shirt Covered Notebook

Back-to-school season is upon us and as anyone with kids knows – the perfect binder is a must-have school accessory. Why not encourage the kids to help make their own?  Got an old favorite T-shirt? Maybe one from a favorite summer camp, something you tie-dyed or perhaps a favorite from last school year that is now too small to wear.  Good, you’re ready, then.

T-shirt covered notebook



3-ring binder (with solid spine)
Aleene’s Tacky Glue


Step 1: Cut the arm holes out of your T-shirt. Next, cut the remaining part of your T-shirt in half.

Step 2: Lay the front part of your T-shirt down on a flat surface. If there is an image on the shirt, have the image facing down. Center the front of your open binder on the piece of T-shirt.


Step 3: Use your scissors to trim away excess material from around the edges. You want about two or three inches left.

Step 4: Put a strip of glue along the top, bottom and outer edge of the inside of the notebook.


Step 5: Start folding the T-shirt in around the notebook. Use clothespins to hold in place. Remember to make sure your image stays centered on the front. Do not worry about rough edges on the inside of the notebook.

Step 6: Use the remaining piece of T-shirt to wrap the back side of the notebook in the same way. Fold the fabric to make a neat edge on the spine. You could also use craft felt, ribbon or another decorative embellishment to cover any rough edges on the spine where the two pieces of T-shirt meet.


Step 7 Adhere a piece of craft felt using craft glue to the insides of your notebook to cover the raw edges. You may need more than one sheet.

Want more notebook inspiration?  Keep reading.

How to make a DIY jean jacket two ways - Jennifer Perkins

Notebook Flair – It’s easy to add DIY flair to notebooks – even make your own notebook that looks like a jean jacket.

How to make a family art journal.

Art Journaling With Kids – Consider starting a family art journal where everyone contributes and everyone’s art melds into one giant piece.

The kids will love their custom notebooks and there will be no getting them mixed up with the other kids at school.  Mom’s might like this trick for photo albums.


8 Responses to “Back to School T-Shirt Covered Notebook”

  1. Mother of 3

    I LOVE this idea! My kids often get attached to clothes too and don’t want to get rid some of their outgrown clothes; this would be a great way to upcycle them! Pinned.

  2. Roseann Hampton

    Such a great DIY idea! This will be one of my features this Saturday at the Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Party! Stop by to grab your featured button! Roseann from This Autoimmune Life


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