DIY Hard Bound Photo Album

DIY Hard Bound Photo Album

Hey there! It’s Kira and I am back with another fun project using my favorite Cardstock Warehouse papers.


  • Cardstock Warehouse Cardstock Papers
    • Rust Colorplan 100lb
    • Lavender Colorplan 100lb
    • Chartreuse Colorplan 100lb
    • Candy Pink Colorplan 100lb
    • Blu Intenso Woodstock 105lb
    • Azzurro Woodstock 105lb
    • Limone Sirio Color 80lb
  • Bone folder
  • Ruler, Pencil, Awl
  • Needle and thread
  • Book press (other options: clamps, heavy books)
  • PVA glue
  • Chipboard
  • Fabric 


If you know me at all, you know I am first and foremost a scrapbooker.  But life has been so crazy lately that I rarely find time to scrapbook at all. So, I wanted to create an album where I can just stick in some photos and call it a day. This is what led me to research how to book bind to create your own book and I thought you could join me on this journey! 

 Photo album papers

First, you will choose your paper(s) and cut it to the size you want when it is folded in half. I created 2 books for this project since I was bound to make some mistakes. The first book measures about 4.5” x 5.5” and the second is about 5.5” x 8.5”, so the papers were trimmed to 8.25” x 5.5” and 8.25” x 10.75”. 

cut papers for diy photo album

Next, score down the center of your papers and fold them in half. 

scoring and folding photo album papers in half

For the first book I made “signatures” (section of papers) with 3 pages each. For the second book, I bound each page separately. I found with thicker paper, it was best to bind with less. 

Rust Colorplan photo album filler pages

With a ruler, mark where you will stitch. I started at the center and marked every 1” up and down the page. Using an awl, or a needle, pre-punch the holes in your paper. 

creating binding holes in paper signatures

You can use any kind of thread to stitch your signatures together, but I used a pre-waxed thread I found in my stash. 

needle and thread for binding pages of photo album

Then, stitch your signatures together. There are lots of tutorials on YouTube that cover stitching and there are a few different stitches you can use. Choose whatever stitch you are most comfortable with.  

 sewing together pages for hard bound photo album

Once your signatures are stitched together, you will want to use some PVA glue and a press of some sort to glue the binding. If you do not have a book press, you can use clamps or heavy books. Just be sure you don't accidentally glue your papers to the books. 

gluing edges of diy photo album

It is best to leave the glue to dry overnight, so in the meantime, I worked on creating my cover. I created my cover using chipboard, fabric, and glue. Use two pieces of chipboard that are 1/2 inch larger on each side than your filler pages, and then create a 1 inch strip that is the same length. Glue those to a piece of fabric or patterned paper, then fold in the edges and glue them down. 

Gluing fabric to cover for DIY photo album

Once the glue has dried on your book filler, adhere it to the inside of your front and back cover. 

outside fabric cover of DIY photo album 

I made quite a few mistakes on my first book, so I tried again and came up with a beautiful rainbow book. I embroidered on some fabric to create my cover. 

rainbow embroidered hardcover photo album

I used Candy Pink, Limone, Chartreuse, Azzuro, Blu Intenso, and Lavender as my rainbow of papers. 

rainbow filler pages for hardcover photo album

I think this one turned out so cute and love how easy it will be to just stick a photo to the page. 

adding photos to photo album pages

Thanks for stopping by! What are you crafting? We'd love to see! Show us on Facebook or Instagram. Tag your creations with #cardstockwarehouse to be featured in our stories, and be sure to follow me at @kira.gets.crafty for more crafty inspiration!

Happy Crafting!

xo, Kira (@kira.gets.crafty

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