Holiday Extravaganza: Upcycled Moleskines

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This guest post comes to us from Elizabeth of handmade:modern.

I buy (and sell) a ton of Moleskine notebooks each year. While I always have a hefty supply of fresh Moleskines on hand, I often find myself with a small box filled with Moleskines in need of upcycling.

Sometimes a design/concept doesn’t turn out the way I’d hoped. Sometimes a customer changes his/her mind. Sometimes (gasp!) I make a mistake.

The guts of these notebooks are brand new, but the covers just need a little love.

Here are two fun ways to upcycle a gently used Moleskine:


Gather your supplies: 

  • Moleskine
  • decorative paper cut roughly 1/2 ” larger on each side than your Moleskine
  • fusible vinyl cut just a little smaller than your decorative paper
  • iron
  • adhesive of choice (to adhere the laminated paper to your Moleskine)
  • sharp scissors or x-acto knife


Make it:

  • turn your iron on to a medium setting (on my iron, this is the silk setting)
  • peel the paper backing away from the vinyl (don’t toss the paper, you’ll need it later!)
  • place the vinyl sticky/tacky side down onto the the right side of your decorative paper
  • place the backing paper (sticky/tacky side down) over your vinyl-covered paper. iron over everything, using just a little pressure. be sure to keep the iron moving, so you don’t accidentally melt the vinyl.
  • after letting it cool for a few moments, pull off the backing paper
  • using an exacto knife or a pair of sharp scissors, trim the excess paper and vinyl from the Moleskine




Gather your supplies:

  • Moleskine notebook
  • fabric cut roughly to size
  • fusible web cut slightly smaller than your fabric
  • iron
  • sharp fabric scissors

Make it:

  • turn your iron to a moderately high temp (I use the cotton setting); make sure the steam feature is off
  • iron your fabric on both sides to remove all wrinkles/fold marks and place the transfer web rough side down onto the wrong side of your fabric (the paper side of the transfer web should be facing up)
  • using your hot and dry iron, press all over for 5-8 seconds using gentle pressure
  • once it’s cool, peel off the paper backing and then position your Moleskine inside of the fabric (it’s a Moleskine taco!)


  • iron the spine first; I normally run the spine of the Moleskine against the iron a few times
  • press the rest of the Moleskine, pressing firmly (press a little harder if you’re using heavier fabric)
  • using sharp scissors, trim the excess fabric and interfacing from the Moleskine

Don’t you just love that floral fabric? Over the summer, my daughter’s BFF bought a pair of vintage Liz Claiborne jeans and made cut-off shorts. I’ve been hoarding the fabric from the legs ever since :)

Don’t have any used Moleskines? No problem, grab a pack of new ones and get to work. They make awesome (and affordable) holiday gifts.

Elizabeth Rosemond is a mother, crafter, and blogger. Her shop, handmade:modern, offers a variety of journals, stitched goods and handmade craft supplies.  She lives just outside of Seattle and can often be found munching on kale chips and watching The Golden Girls. Find her on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.


Play along using hashtag #holidayextravaganza.

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