DIY Planner Cover (For Less Than $2)

I love personalizing my planners and one of the easiest ways that I've found to do that is to change out the cover. This is especially easy if you have a planner or journal with a binding that the cover can attach to, like a discbound or spiral bound.

On a hunt for cheap, easy, removable covers for my Staples Arc discbound planner, I came across this blog post. ​There was one very vital piece of information that I pulled from that... place mats! Place mats are very inexpensive, and yet are made with a durable material. Plus they have awesome prints!

So for less than $2 a piece, I have a nearly endless supply of cute DIY planner covers. All I need is a few tools, and about 15 minutes of time... ​

Unlimited DIY Planner Covers

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How to Make an Inexpensive Planner Cover

First step is to find a place mat that you like, in a good, strong material. I found a bunch at Walmart that were anywhere from $0.80 to $2.00 a piece. If you are using a junior/A5 size planner, you will be able to cut the place mat in half and have a front and a back. But try to picture what it will look like when it is cut up. Some of the designs I found were great, but the best part was right in the middle of the place mat. This means, I would need to buy two of them in order to keep that middle section whole.

Place Mat for Planner Cover

Next, you need to measure your planner cover that you currently have (or planner pages, and add a bit around the edges for overhang). For mine, ​the measurements came out to be just a hair over 8.5" x 6".

When you are getting ready to cut your pieces, be wary of what the underside of the place mat looks like. Some of the Walmart place mats that I found had a code stamped on the underside. You'll probably want to cut that part off and work with the rest of it, if possible.​

Code on Place Mat

I start by cutting the entire place mat in half and lining up the two sections the way I want them to look when they are complete. This helps me visualize what it will look like when I'm finished, so I can make sure I cut the right pieces off.

Place Mat and Cutter

Another note of caution, this material is very slippery. I had a hard time cutting these at first without them slipping away and messing up my straight lines. If your cutter isn't already equipped with some sort of gripping surface, you might want to use something to help you keep it still. I put a small patch of textured drawer liner underneath the place mat while I was cutting, just enough to give it something to grip to.​

Trim down all edges until you have your final pieces. Again, put them back-to-back and make sure everything looks good before punching your holes.

DIY Cover with Staples Arc Punch

I'm using the Staples Arc hole punch for mine, but if you have a regular spiral bound style book, there are hole punches made for those as well.​

Punch your holes, and you're done! Snap your new covers into place and enjoy.​

DIY Discbound Notebook Cover

Have you made your own planner covers before? What did you use for them? Let us know in the comments!

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