Leather Notebook Cover

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse

Since spying the Hermès Ulysse notebook cover a little while ago, I’ve not been able to get it out of my mind! My only issue with it was the price, I know I’m paying for the superb quality that Hermès is known for, but it’s really not justifiable to me at the moment. Honestly though, even if I had all the money in the world I don’t think I’d be able to bring myself to spend £150-£300+ for what is basically a very nice piece of leather with a few press-studs attached & a Hermès logo. Especially not when it’s so easy to DIY!

My notebook comes with me everywhere, so I thought I’d take inspiration from this & make myself something similar. As I’m making it from scratch I wanted to make it a bit more in keeping with my own aesthetics. I love the clean lines & minimalist look the Hermès has, but I’m a sucker for leather items that look battered & distressed, plus I had the perfect bit of scrap leather for the job! This took literally 20 minutes & there’s no sewing required!

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse
Supplies : Leather (at least enough for you’re notebook) / Notebook / White pencil or chalk / Shears / Hole punch

If you don’t have shears, make sure you have either a rotary cutter, or a good pair of scissors that will slice through the leather & not just tear it. The hole punch is optional, depending how you want to fasten it, though if you don’t have one, anything sharp that will stab through the leather will work.

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse

Take your closed notebook & draw around one side with the pencil. When you come to do the other side, this is really important, don’t simply flip it over. You need to ‘roll’ it on its spine over to the other side, this way you’re accounting for the fabric needed to cover it when it’s closed. Notice how the rings on mine don’t match up to where I stopped drawing & there is quite a gap. You’ll know it’s right if when you open the book out flat & place it on top, it looks as though the leather is a bit wider than it should be.

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse

Once you’ve traced around the whole book, add a little allowance around the edges. I added 0.5cm, just so that the leather would hang over & the book would be totally covered. If you want to add a tab to fasten it like I have, draw that on too. Don’t worry about being neat! I wanted a distressed look to mine, so I did the seam allowance by hand so that it wasn’t perfectly straight & even all over, but if you want a super neat finish like the Hermès one, use a ruler.

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse

Cut it out & wipe off the pencil. You can fasten it however you like, press-studs, buttons, clips, buckles, studs, the options are endless. I used a spike stud for mine, purely as it was lying around! For this type of fastening, punch (or skewer) a hole in the tab as wide as the stem underneath the spike. Make a small slit, about a few millimeters in length, out from the hole. This allows the bigger part of the spike to fit through the hole. Fold the tab over to where it would be when the books fastened & mark. Then punch another hole & attach the spike.

Leather, Notebook, Cover, Book, DIY, No Sew, Hermes, Ulysse

Wrap it around your notebook & you’re done! I chose to wrap some leather lace around mine too (first image), as the leather was very thin & floppy, just to keep the notebook from slipping out when it’s in my bag & I think it adds nicely to the old & distressed look too. There’s lots of other ways you can do this if you want a more secure cover also, or you could glue it on & make it permanent!

Filed under: DIY


  1. Posted 04.07.2012 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

    Love this, very chic! You could probably sell these…

  2. Posted 04.07.2012 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    oh dear, this DIY is the most useful transformation i’ve seen! inspiring!


  3. Posted 04.07.2012 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    Wow love it !

  4. Posted 04.07.2012 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    Well done! I would buy it!:)

    Heartbeats from Vienna Wedekind

      Posted 08.07.2012 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      Aw, thank you! That’s such a lovely compliment! :)

  5. Posted 04.07.2012 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    great post!!

  6. Posted 05.07.2012 at 4:11 am | Permalink

    i actually like your version more than the hermes one – it has way more character! would love to make myself one; and last week i saw another leather tutorial so i think i’m going to have to find some scrap leather this weekend!

      Posted 08.07.2012 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

      Aw, that’s really nice to hear! I love the Hermes one but I agree, I prefer things with a little more character myself & I didn’t want to directly rip it off, even if it is a DIY!
      Definitely make one, it really is super quick & simple, good luck finding some leather! :)

  7. A's Fashion Files
    Posted 05.07.2012 at 9:09 pm | Permalink

    This is such a great DIY! You did an amazing job!!
    P.S. I’m having a $75 Shopbop giveaway on my blog, so don’t forget to enter! :)
    A’s Fashion Files
    $75 Shopbop Giveaway!

  8. ylenia
    Posted 05.07.2012 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    So cool, thanks for sharing!
    Hope you will take a look at my latest post and let me know what you think, I’ll be happy to read your opinion!

  9. Posted 06.07.2012 at 1:24 am | Permalink

    Love this!

  10. Posted 06.07.2012 at 2:56 am | Permalink

    This is great babe! I am gonna try that! Following you on Bloglovin’


  11. Posted 06.07.2012 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Love this, I would never have thought to do a DIY though!

    Maria xxx

  12. Posted 06.07.2012 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    DIY all the way! You did a great job and it has more character and personality :)

  13. Posted 06.07.2012 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

    Ok, I am trying this for sure! I gave my mom for her birthday the Hermes one, but for me the DIY will have to do (I am still trying to find a place to buy leather in Mexico… but apparently I will have to go north… ugh!)



      Posted 08.07.2012 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      Wow, lucky Mom! :) I don’t know why, but I would have assumed leather would be easy to come across in Mexico! I get most of mine from a guy in Italy on Ebay, mostly remnants, he ships worldwide I think – so I guess if he can ship it to you, try there. Good luck getting some!

      • Posted 08.07.2012 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

        I thought so to before I moved! I was told that in the north of Mexico there is a lot of leather, and I can even find more exotic ones (like ostrich!!!) for reasonable prices!

        ps. I used your IFB tutorial when formatting my new wordpress blog (has been a bit of a nightmare to migrate though!) xx

        • FAIIINT
          Posted 08.07.2012 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

          Oh wow! Definitely worth a trip then! I love ostrich leather, but it is pretty hard to come across for a good price. Look forward to seeing what you get!
          Oh, I’m glad it’s been useful for people! If you’re still having trouble with anything, feel free to drop me an email & I can help you out with anything you’re stuck on! :)

  14. Posted 07.07.2012 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    I live for your diy’s!


  15. Posted 07.07.2012 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

    I’m a fan of this kind of notebook cover and you did a great DIY project. Loved the stud detail, which is so very you!

  16. Posted 09.07.2012 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    great idea
    Xo Megan

  17. Posted 09.07.2012 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    Great idea! Thanks for sharing love :)


  18. Posted 11.07.2012 at 3:35 am | Permalink

    Ahh this is such a cool & unique DIY. Great idea and such a wonderful blog!!

  19. Posted 19.01.2014 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    Amazing! Love it!

    http://www.ananasa.com- Home for Handmade

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