I recently found a link to Midori traveller's notebooks, an intriguing notebook system with a leather folder that contains a customisable assortment of useful notebooks with the added option of plastic inserts. It's designed to be very personal, resusable as the notebooks can be replaced when full, and to become older and more worn as time goes by, the sort of notebook one can imagine Indiana Jones taking on his explorations.These beautiful leather journals come from Japan and are advertised as the notebook "for all the travellers who have a free spirit." The original Midori notebooks are made from leather with a tin clasp and an elastic band to hold the contents safely in place.
While I was curled up on the couch exploring Midori travellers notebooks via the internet I found tutorials to make your own on you tube. There are lots of them and I've made a few. I found that you can make them in leather or fabric, and found the concept of making a different size to fit pocket moleskine notebooks. I love moleskine and they come in lots of different styles so that was another bonus, as well as being a lot cheaper than the original midori notebooks. I couldn't resist the idea of making my own.
Here's what I came up with
The first one has a fabric outer and liner and 3 pocket moleskine notebooks. (2 fat quarters of fabric would make 4 journals like this and this particular fabric came from hobbycraft in a bundle with 3 other fat quarters for £7)
The balloon journal has a fabric cover but a paper liner and is filled with 3 larger moleskins cut to fit.
I was least happy with the leather version, and thin another time I would consider how to stabilise the leather, maybe with a paper or thin card lining.