I have been wanting to change my cover on my Happy Planner for a while now. I love that you can change the covers on the HP because it makes me feel like my planner is brand new again. I started looking at the covers Mambi sell but none really caught my eye. Next I went to Etsy to look for a cover, and there are some very beautiful covers, but living in Canada the shipping was as much as the cover itself. So I thought why not try to make one myself.
As I was searching the Dollarstore stationery supplies this weekend I found laminating pages and decided this weekend was the time to make one. The process (definitely a learning process) lead me to make two.
I thought I would share step by step how I made my covers along with some tips if you decide you would like to make one.
The How To
1. Select the paper you want to turn into your cover. I used decorative scrapbook paper that was printed on one side. I paired it with a blank pink sheet of scrapbook paper to make it a big thicker. (Tip: the heavier weight of the paper the better)
2. Use the original Happy Planner cover to trace out on the decorative paper where you need to cut. (Tip: measure on your paper where the inside paper is on the Happy Planner and not on the outside of the laminate; see arrow on photo for better detail of where to measure) I measured on the outside for my first one and when you add the laminating sleeve it made it oversize
3. Use scissors or paper trimmer to cut down the paper to size.
4. Use that piece of cut paper to measure your other sheets of paper (if you are making a back cover measure it all from this paper so you don’t have to re-measure). I also at this time cut the corners to be rounded (I need to buy a corner cutter because my corners are a bit crooked)
8. Peal away the paper of the laminating sheet as you push it down onto your paper. (Tip: Do this slowly. It recommended on the laminating sheet instructions to remove the entire paper sheet and then to push the sticky piece down. I do not recommend doing this. It can result in big air pockets if a piece gets stuck too quickly) I pealed away the sheet as I went and it worked perfect.
10. Tape the original cover to your new cover and cut away the excess laminating plastic. If you cut your paper to the size of the paper in your original cover this should leave a border of laminating plastic around your paper. (This is necessary to seal the paper in)
12. Use a hole punch to punch out where you have marked. Try your best to punch the same depth in from the edge from each hole. You could use a ruler to mark to be sure the holes are even. I just did it by eye. (Also if you have the Happy Planner punch you could use that and save time and save the pain…I am weak and apparently have no hand strength)!
13. Next use a pair of scissors to cut into the hole you have punched, to cut out a small piece of laminating plastic. This leaves the gap for the planner to attach to the rings (see arrow on photo). You can test how it moves on the rings to know whether or not to cut a bigger gap, but start small.
The pink flower and gold cover was the second cover I made. My first cover as I said above, I made the mistake of cutting the image portion the same size as the whole original cover so when I added my laminate sheet and cut a border around it to keep it laminated, it made the cover over-sized. However I still wanted to include a photo of it (below), because I did use different material to create it. The purple paper is a gift bag that I cut up and the image was a fall greeting card, both items purchased at the Dollarstore.
The laminating sheets purchased at the Dollarstore are not super thick, I think you could definitely laminate it a second time to make it more durable, but I have chosen to put it on over top of my current planner cover, that way my planner is still durable but I have a different look for the cover.
I hope this process was helpful for you if are interested in making your own Happy Planner cover. I will definitely be experimenting and making more, so if I make any changes to my process I will update this post.