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Make Your Own Bookmarks

Learning how to make your own bookmarks is a fun and satisfying craft that also provides you with some great gift options for loved ones. Everyone loves a bookmark, and it’s a creative and artistic way to show you care while giving the recipient a useful keepsake at the same time.

Make Your Own Bookmarks: How to Get Started

There are many ways to make your own bookmarks. You might want to consider the recipient and his or her preferences are before you decide what kind of bookmark to make. For example, an artistic friend might appreciate a bookmark made from a painting postcard, or with photographs from a local gallery printed on it. On the other hand, your childrens’ grandparents would probably love a bookmark colored by the kids just for them.

How you make the bookmark, what materials you use, and what it looks like are entirely up to you: this is the fun part. In general, bookmarks should be made from fairly sturdy material, so try to stick to cardboard, fabric, vellum, or other materials that stand up to use. The bookmark should be relatively flat so the book can close easily with the bookmark inside. It’s also fun (and handy) to include a tassel or other type of marker that hangs out of the book so it’s easy for the reader to find their place again.

Templates and More

If you’re unsure where to begin, there are plenty of instructions online to make your own bookmarks – all you have to do is find a search engine and do some poking around for inspiration and ideas. A fun and useful PDF file can be found at Creativity, which allows you to print a blank template for a standard-sized bookmark. Once you print the template, you can use it as a pattern to cut out the material you want to use, and decorate it letting your imagination take the lead. You can even use the template itself as the bookmark if you print it out onto cardboard rather than paper. The same website Creativity Portal offers other similar templates in a variety of colors, which are ready for printing using colored ink to give you the results you want.

If the template doesn’t suit your needs, it’s not necessary, of course. If you’re just interested in making a bookmark that’s a standard size, most bookmarks are rectangular in shape and measure approximately 2 inches wide and anywhere from 6 to 8 inches long, depending on the height of the book with which you plan to use it. If you’re unsure, a good rule of thumb is to land right in the middle and make a bookmark measuring 2 x 7 inches.

Other than perhaps creating a standard size, and attaching the useful detail of a tassel, there really aren’t any rules to making a bookmark. Some gorgeous artistic creations can be made using materials you have on hand, meaning anything from color crayons to tinfoil. Let your creativity – and your idea of what the recipient might like – take the lead.

If your bookmark includes artwork, and you’re concerned about it lasting – or if you’re concerned about it possibly rubbing off in the book’s pages – you should give it a protective coating before gifting it to the recipient. You can create a coating in number of ways. Most office supply shops offer lamination services for a very small fee; you can also purchase self-stick laminating sheets to use at home. Packing tape or even Scotch tape, placed carefully over the bookmark, does the same job. Painting it with Mod Podge or another decoupage sealant is yet another option. If you choose this option, make sure the sealant dries to a non-sticky finish so it doesn’t wind up a permanent fixture inside the book!