Text on top of an image with a hand writing a list on a notepad on a wooden surface next to a computer with colorful keys to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

Simple Tear Off Notepad DIY

A little background about this post: It’s inspired by my grandpa who recently passed away. It was my very first DIY project that he taught my sister and I when we were really little. Grandpa, a mechanical engineer, was extremely handy. I was always inspired by his ability to fix anything along with creating contraptions out of basic materials that could make various household tasks more efficient. So when we stayed at their house every summer growing up, I loved spending time with him in his workshop. One thing he always had on hand were his handmade notepads. They were made out of recycled printer paper that would otherwise go unused. So today I am honored to share with you a very special (and practical) way to make your own recycled tear off notepad, thanks to grandpa : )

All the materials laid out on a wooden slat table for How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper including blocks of wood, a clamp, an exacto knife, a pencil, recycled paper, rubber cement, and a ruler

What you need:

  • paper
  • rubber cement
  • clamp
  • small blocks of wood
  • exacto knife and ruler

A girl making a line with a ruler and pencil on a white piece of paper on a wooden table outside to show How To Make Your Own Pad of PaperA woman's hands with red nail polish using a ruler and exacto knife to cute pieces of paper to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

1. Gather all your scrap paper (make sure there is at least one blank side).

2. Use your ruler and exacto knife to cut the paper into your desired size. 3″ x 5″ is a nice size for a standard notepad. (And as grandpa would say, “Measure twice, cut once.”)

A woman's hands with red nails flipping through small pieces of paper with a wooden table, a ruler, and clamp in the background to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Papertwo hands with red finger nails holding two blocks of wood around a stack of paper with a clamp and wooden table in the background to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

3. Once you have all your paper cut and stacked together, sandwich the paper with the two blocks of wood at one end.

One hand holding two blocks of wood around a stack of paper and the other hand securing a clamp down on the wood to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

4. Make sure all your paper is flush with the wood blocks and clamp together.

Two hands holding two pieces of wood clamped around a stack of a white pad of paper while brushing rubber cement on the binding to show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

5. On the clamped end, brush a hefty coat of rubber cement. Don’t be shy, lay it on thick!

6. Now repeat this 3-5 times. Let dry for about an hour in between coats.

7. Keep your notepad clamped together as it dries over night.

Two hands with red nails taking a pad of paper off of a block of wood with a wooden table and materials in the background to show How To Make Your Own Pad of PaperA hand holding a simple pad of paper in one hand and tearing off a sheet with the other with a midcentury slatted wooden table in the background to illustrate How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

8. Remove clamps and you’re ready to use!

A hand with red finger nails writing a grocery list on a pad of paper on the refrigerator with a lot of magnets all around it to show the final result for How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

In addition: You can add a magnet strip to the back of one for a running grocery list on the fridge!

A grandpa and little Philipino girl driving a tractor pulling a red wagon with little kids for a ride in a large backyard with green grass and trees

I am grateful to have grown up with such loving grandparents who played a big role in my life. I know it can be rare to have that opportunity in the first place and the relationship we formed was truly special.  He was 92 and my grandparents celebrated their 68th anniversary together this year. He lived a full and beautiful life, but no matter what, it’s hard to say goodbye. I will always cherish the memories we shared over the years.

Two hands holding two pads of white paper with a midcentury slatted wood table in the background to help show How To Make Your Own Pad of Paper

I guess that’s the beauty of making memories with the people you love. It doesn’t have to be extravagant. Perhaps some of the most beautiful memories can be made at home, doing something together as simple as making a pad of paper : )

With Love,
Kristen

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