Tips & Advice

10 Materials to Create Eco Friendly Notebook Covers You’ll Love

10 Materials to Create Eco Friendly Notebook Covers You’ll Love

As environmental consciousness continues to grow, many people are seeking ways to incorporate sustainable practices into their daily lives, even down to the smallest but every-day-used details, like notebook covers. And if you read this long, we know – one of them is you.

CustomAny, as a companion of people’s decorating journey, we understand that a notebook is more than just a place to jot down notes; it’s a reflection of personal values. So, how to show your eco-consciousness when using notebooks? 

From recycled paper to natural fabrics and even upcycled materials, there’s something for everyone to make eco friendly notebook covers. These innovative materials not only allow you to express your creativity but also contribute to a greener planet.  

Let’s join us to find out 10 eco friendly notebook cover ideas and show the world that even the smallest choices can have a big impact on our environment!

Use upcycled materials for Your Eco Friendly Notebook Covers

Upcycling materials for notebook covers is a creative and eco-friendly way to give new life to items that would otherwise be discarded. Here are CustomAny‘s recommendations:

1. Present wrapping paper

Using present wrapping paper is an excellent way to repurpose this often colorful and patterned material. Instead of tossing it after unwrapping a gift, you can use it to create unique and eye-catching notebook covers. 

To transform wrapping paper into a stylish DIY notebook cover, measure and cut it to fit the size of your notebook. The process involves applying glue or double-sided tape to the back of the wrapping paper and carefully placing the notebook cover on top, ensuring a secure hold. 

With a little creativity, you can easily give your eco friendly notebooks a festive touch.

Reuse your present wrapping paper
Reuse your present wrapping paper

2. Brown paper bags

Brown paper bags are a common household item that can be utilized to create eco friendly notebook covers. 

Taking a paper bag and trimming it on a flat surface creates a versatile material that can be customized in a variety of ways. You can measure and cut the paper bag to fit the notebook’s dimensions, and can easily attach the cover by applying glue or double-sided tape to the back. 

Utilizing this eco-friendly paper for notebook covers not only gives them a rustic and natural look but also helps reduce waste by repurposing materials that would otherwise be thrown away.

3. Magazines

Magazines are a fantastic resource for upcycling materials into colorful and dynamic notebook covers. 

Let’s create a collage-like cover for your notebook by selecting colorful pages and cutting out interesting images or patterns. 

For beautiful collage art covers, you should have a clear division between main and supporting subjects; or reasonable color coordination rules. For example, using colors of the same tone such as red – yellow – orange, or opposite colors such as neon orange and cerulean blue.

Simply apply adhesive materials to the notebook cover, carefully arrange the magazine cutouts, and firmly press them in place. 

This way, you can give your eco friendly notebooks a personal and artistic touch while reducing your ecological footprint by reusing old magazines.

Collage notebook cover made of cut out magazine
Collage notebook cover made of cut out magazine

4. Newspaper

Newspapers can also be repurposed to create eco friendly notebook covers. It is possible to create unique covers by selecting sections or articles that catch your attention. Newspapers covers also bring a vintage vibe for your notebooks.

To create the cover, apply a layer of mod podge or glue to the notebook cover and carefully place the newspaper cutouts onto the glue. Press down gently to secure and smooth out any air bubbles or wrinkles. 

You can also add another layer of glue or mod podge on top of the newspaper to seal it to get durable notebooks. 

5. Old denim jeans

In 2023, denim becomes a hot trend again and there are no signs of “cooling down”. So, don’t throw away any worn-out denim jeans! They can be reused to make sturdy, durable and trendy notebook covers. 

Cut out a section of fabric from old denim jeans that is large enough to cover the notebook and attach it to the cover using fabric glue or a sewing machine. 

Through this method, you not only give your eco friendly notebook cover a unique and trendy look but also contribute to sustainable practices by reducing textile waste. 

Composition and Biodegradable materials never let you down

Here are 2 composition and biodegradable materials for eco friendly notebook covers we suggest:

6. Cork Fabric

Cork fabric is made from the bark of the cork oak tree, which naturally regrows after harvesting. This material is not only renewable but also highly sustainable. 

Cork fabric is lightweight, durable, and water-resistant, making it suitable for protecting your zero waste notebooks. The unique texture and natural appearance of cork fabric add a touch of elegance and eco-consciousness to your notebook covers.

To do cork fabric book covers, you firstly measure and cut a piece of cork fabric to fit the dimensions of your notebook cover. Then, attach it to the front, back, trim any excess fabric for a neat finish. 

By using cork fabric, you made yourself an eco friendly notebook cover and contribute to the preservation of forests, as well as reduce the use of synthetic materials.

7. Plant-Based Plastics

Plant-based plastics, or bioplastics, offer an eco-friendly alternative to traditional petroleum-based plastics. These plastics are derived from renewable resources, such as corn, sugarcane, vegetable oils, or algae. 

When applying this method, measure and cut the sheet to fit your notebook cover, ensuring it covers the front, back, and spine adequately. Then, use eco-friendly adhesive or heat to attach the plant-based plastic to the notebook cover, allowing it to dry or cool completely before use. 

Create Eco Friendly Notebook Covers from Organic and vegan materials

To create eco friendly notebook covers from organic and vegan materials, we recommend 3 alternatives:

8. Vegan Leather Alternatives

Vegan leather provides a cruelty-free and sustainable option that resembles natural leather without the environmental impact. Vegan leather alternatives can be made from a variety of plant-based sources such as pineapple leaves, cork, or even recycled materials like plastic bottles. 

To make book covers in this method, you can do the same as for the cork fabric one we mentioned above: sizing the covers, cutting and trimming the vegan leather materials to complete the look.

Opting for vegan leather alternatives allows you to make a conscious choice that aligns with your values while still enjoying the luxurious look and feel of leather.

9. Organic Cotton

Unlike conventional cotton, which is grown using harmful pesticides and requires substantial amounts of water, organic cotton is grown without synthetic chemicals or genetically modified organisms. 

Organic cotton is soft, durable, and can be customized with printing or embroidery to add a personalized touch to your sustainable notebooks. 

Choosing organic cotton promotes a cleaner and healthier planet by reducing the use of toxic substances and conserving water resources.

10. Plantable Covers

Plantable Covers
Plantable Covers (Source:

For truly unique and eco friendly journals, consider using plantable covers for your notebooks. These covers are recycled paper notebooks embedded with seeds. 

Once you have finished using the notebook, instead of discarding it, you can plant the cover in soil. As the cover decomposes, the embedded seeds sprout and grow into plants, contributing to reforestation efforts and reducing waste. 

Plantable covers provide a creative and sustainable way to give your compostable notebook a new life while making a positive impact on the environment. 


In conclusion, we have shown a world of possibilities for those who seek sustainable choices in their daily lives. 

Choosing eco friendly notebook covers, you not only express your unique style but also contribute to the preservation of our planet. Each material offers its own benefits and with these 10 materials, you can create stunning and eco friendly notebooks that inspire and delight you. 

If you find this topic interesting, you can read more similar articles about decorating or about environmentally friendly materials on our blog here.


About Karen Lee

Meet our Creative Master – Karen Lee! Karen is the DIY wizard and the creative mind behind all of our inspiration posts: from fantastic gift ideas to exceptional decoration tips that make your events pop. Stick around for more exciting content, as we belive she is your partner in all things fun and fabulous.