Monday, February 2, 2009


Update: Download templates here.

As my children get older, each year the pressure increases to create Valentines that are "cool" and, more importantly, not "lame" or "embarrassing." Pumpkin is at an age (10) where he still likes to give and receive Valentines at school, but he doesn't necessarily want to admit that he likes it. Luckily, this matchbook notebook Valentine fit the bill perfectly last year. As a matter of fact, as Pumpkin saw me photographing the notebooks for this post, he told me that some kids still carry their notebooks with them from last year! So I guess that's proof-positive that matchbook notebooks as Valentines are kid-approved.

Always the critics, Pumpkin and Petunia thought that the standard, matchbook-sized matchbook notebooks were too small, so we adapted the idea and made them a bit larger. We added graphics of Pumpkin and Petunia's two favorite animals (monkey and elephant, respectively) and printed them up. One 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of paper makes two notebook covers. The following show what the templates look like for each design.

Print the templates on the paper of your choice, we used textured cardstock, cut using the solid lines as your guide and score and fold as indicated. (measuring from the top of the paper, you will fold at 1 1/2 inches, 6 3/4 inches and 7 inches). It is much easier to fold the paper if you score it first. You can easily score the paper using a straight edge and a bone folder or the dull side of a butter knife.

Once the notebook covers are cut and folded, just cut scrap paper to fit inside. You can use paper right out of your recycle bin, stacked so that the unused, blank side is showing. You could also use lined paper if you have stacks of it lying around like we do. Here is what the inside of the notebooks look like. We measured our notebook paper to be about 3 1/4 by 4 1/2 inches.

We stacked about 10 to 15 sheets of paper to include in each notebook. Once you stack the paper, just slip it under the bottom flap of the notebook cover and staple in place. Then fold down the cover and slip under the fold. The finished notebook is approximately 3 1/2 by 5.

Last year, we made about 50 of these fun little notebooks for classmates, teachers and friends. They do take a bit of extra time, so definitely plan ahead, but the end result is well worth the time and effort and your children will give something fun and useful to all of their friends! Matchbook Notebooks would also make great party favors!

If you would like me to send you a pdf file of the templates, just email me with the subject line Matchbook Notebooks and I will send the templates right off to you!


Loralee - No Fuss Fabulous said...

These are adorable! Thanks for the free template! Your site is great!

Tori C. (The Sweet Jelly Bean) said...

As always, your blog just makes me so happy!:)

CzaMama said...

Those are great, J! I would love an email with the templates, pretty please! Now, for a flamingo to be one of the kid's fav animals...hehehe

Katie said...

These are great, and even if they do take a little bit of time they are still pretty quick handmade valentines.

Diane said...

Cool, please email me the templates! I was thinking of stapling a sheet of the button candies inside for a surprise treat instead of note paper.

Diane said...

How can you email it to me? I am new to blogs.


Hi Diane:

If you want to post your email address in the body of your reply, I will not publish it but will be able to email you the files.

Jenny said...

These are really adorable. Great idea! Thanks for sharing them.

with_all_hope said...

These are awesome! I especially love the flamingos. Could I get an email?

Anonymous said...

Could you send me a template? Very cute!

Anonymous said...

Please email me the pdf file if you have a chance. Thank you so much! I saw the scribd link but couldn't open it. These are simply brilliant!

Michele said...

Hi there!
Can you send me a pdf for the valentine's ... so super cute! Thanks for your help!