Bookbinding tutorial
Here is a basic bookbinding tutorial which will show you how to bind your own books at home.  You can use this for any type of book, including old books you want to repair, or etexts and printed materials. 

Step 1: Acquire the right bookbinding supplies

You will need
  • normal printer paper
  • thick paper or cardboard for the cover (dependant on if you want it paperback or hardcover)
  • PVA glue
  • glue brush
  • knife
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • ruler

Step 2: Measure pages

First, cut the paper to get the right size for your boks pages.  For example, if you are creating a 15x10cm book, you need to add 1cm to the side where you want the binding to be. This means that for a landscape format book, you will measure 16x10cm.

Step 3: Make the inside of your book

Once your pages are measured, we need to do a bit more measuring. 

Measure roughly 1cm to the left side of each page.  Mark this line with your pencil. 

Then, carefully score the marked line with your pencil. Be careful not to cut off the small piece; you are just scoring the page so it's easier to fold the book's paper.

When all pages are scored, fold them on the marked line. You should have several single pages.

Step 4: Glue pages

Get your PVA glue out.  Normal glue is fine if you can't find PVA but PVA glue will yield the best results for the purposes of this bookbinding tutorial. 

First, apply glue on the folded over piece of each page. It's a very good idea to practice this first on some blank, disposable paper.  This way you know exactly how much glue to put.

Too much glue makes your pages crinkly; not enough and you won't get them to stick.

Do each page one after another, starting with the first one, applying glue, and then sticking the next page on it. Make sure the outer two corners are aligned. Even if the binding doesn't line up, don't worry - that part won't be visible in the finished product.

It will take a bit of time for the pages to dry.  Remember to always open the book up so you can make sure your pages aren't sticking together.

Step 5: Add front/back pages

Get your ruler back out.  You need to now measure the front and back pages of the book.

Your measurements will probably be pretty close to what they were before, but each millimeter becomes vital at this point.

For the front and back pages, double the length of the book. In the case of a 16x14cm book, multiply 16 by two (the width stays the same).

Cut two pieces of paper in this size. You can use the same paper you are using for your interior pages, or new paper if you prefer.

Once you have those two pieces of paper for the front and back, fold them down the middle. Then add your front page by applying some glue to the folded over narrow part of the paper.  Finally, put your front page on.

It's a little harder to do the back page since you won't have any guidance on how much glue you should apply, but a good trick is to imagine a 1cm line on the back where the binding is, apply glue, then stick the back page on.

Step 6: Book cover

While your glue is drying on the other pages, go ahead and prepare the cover card. If you want a hardcover book, use cardboard; if you are doing a paperback, strong paper works fine.

Using your measurements from the previous step, add 1cm to each side. 16cm becomes 17, 14 becomes 15, for example. Cut two pieces of card with these measurements.

Using the paper you want to use for your book cover, place the two cover pieces beside each other, leaving a gap in between. The gap must have the width of the binding.

Place the card on the cover, using PVA glue (not too much so it doesn't crinkle). Leave roughly an inch of cover on each side of the card, and make sure it's completely covered in glue to avoid bubbles.

Next, cut the edges off the cover, not too close to the card.

Finally, apply some glue to what's left of the cover material, fold the outer left and right sides over first, and stick them onto the card. Then fold the top and bottom over and stick them.

Now your cover is prepared and ready to be attached to the book.

Step 7: Assemble the book

Finally, take the inside of the book and turn it over.  This way you can start with the back page to make life easier.

Put glue all over the back page, paying special attention to the corners. Then take the cover and place the spine in the gap you left earlier. 

Stick the back page onto the inside of the cover and let it dry.

Apply glue to the front page, then take your cover, making sure the binding is very close. Fully close your book, stick the cover onto the front page, and carefully open it to make sure it fits. If it does, apply a little pressure to make it fully stick.

The last step is to go through your book and make sure no pages stick together.

Click here for a detailed bookbinding tutorial

More links:
Do It Yourself Guide to Binding Your Own Handmade Books