So easy if you have a laminator!
I bought an old child’s book (not an expensive one, but something akin to those little golden books, although I couldn’t find any of those at the used book store this trip). I picked up several different titles in case my first try went awry. I was looking for something colorful without too many words. Beginner books. You may have some around the house, I didn’t have any I wanted to take apart.
The one I had was put together with staples (you may find these easier to disassemble, I haven’t tried the kind that are bound). I simply removed the staples and the cut the pages apart (I would recommend using your paper cutter, I used scissors so the pages aren’t nice and straight, next time I’ll do that!).
Pay attention to page order so that you can get them back in order, that will be easy if the pages are numbered but if not, you may have a little trouble, so put them in order as you remove them and keep them that way.
I found I could get 2 pages into each laminating sleeve. It will depend on the size of your book, and that may be something you think about when you find the book(s) you want to do. I really hate to waste that laminating material! Place your pages in the sleeve so that they will fit with some space around them. You want enough space around them so that you can round the corners of the pages without cutting into the paper.
Follow the directions on your laminator (I have a Scotch Laminator and I just put the pouch with the pages in it and send it thru after it heats up –it’s really simple).
After all of the pages have been laminated, cut them apart and round all of the corners (I was afraid of my grandson poking himself with those sharp corners because I know this book will go straight into his mouth like everything else does!). It takes a little trimming but you’ll get the hang of it. I’m going to use my paper cutter to trim next time and then round the corners with scissors. Maybe there’s a cutter out there to do this. I might search for one! And be sure not to trim into the paper. I have found in the past that laminated things tend to start peeling over time if you cut into the material that was laminated is. Then it won’t last as long.
You’re almost done! Now you should have a stack of laminated pages, all about the same size. You are going to take your hole punch and punch holes in the top and bottom. I simply started by punching a hole in the first page near the top and then holding it over the second one. I lined the hole punch up (carefully so I didn’t just punch a second hole in the top page!) and using the first as a template, I punched a hole in the second one. I continued, using the first page as my template and punched the top hole in all of the pages. When I was done I lined them all up and put my ribbon in the holes. Then I punched a hole in the bottom of the first page and used the same method to punch the holes in the bottom of the page. Now, this procedure convinced me that I need a new hole punch! Mine is old and needs to be replaced, as you can see!
I threaded the ribbon into the bottom holes making sure the ribbon tied in the front and tied a bow, leaving enough slack so that the book could open and lay flat on each page. I trimmed the ends of the bow and then stitched the knot so that my grandson could not untie it. I think this is important as a small child is very likely to try to take things apart.
This is imperfect, but I think the idea is sound. I will make my next one a little more carefully (with a new hole punch and using my cutter). I think this one tho, will still get some use. I do like those five funny monkeys!