Tutorial: Making filofax dividers!



So both me and Pippa have got ourselves lovely Filofaxes, Pippa has had hers for over a year now and I'm a more recent convert. Pippa bought me one for my Birthday in November. 

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Our filofaxes left: Pippa's, right: Nikki's
Pippa saw a post on pinterest (from the blog a bowl full of lemons) that inspired her to create filofax dividers. Her filofax didn't actually come with any dividers although mine does. (I still made more, because they are pretty cool and you can never have enough dividers...)

We measured our binders (they are helpfully both pocket filofaxes) so are the same size. The pages are 8cm wide and 12cm tall. This gives us the base size for making the dividers. We chose to make them in publisher because it actually allows for quite easy manipulation of text and boxes etc without too much faff (plus it has neat bits to add a calendar in).

The dividers that we decided we wanted were:


But obviously you can make whichever dividers you want/need. 

The design we went for was simple. 4 dividers in a section so the tab would be a 1/4 of the height of the page (3cm in this case). We used a rectangle of 8cm by 12cm for the outside and attached the tab to the righthand edge, we made the tab 1cm wide to make it stand out enough from the page and give space for the text to fit. This was then moved for each of the remaining tabs.

Here you can see the designs for our dividers and calendar pages:


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These will both be laminated to make them more rigid and sturdy. The blog planner pages we decided not to laminate, but if you wanted them to be reusable you could omit the date and laminate them.
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The holes were measured as 5mm wide and 14mm between the edges of the holes. I made the holes and then copied them onto all the sheets. We put 1cm between the edge of the page and the start of the content, but actually this could be reduced because the lamination gives an extra border around the page. If there is too large a border inside the binder it will make it difficult to move the pages.


Here are the pages printed out. You need to be careful to make sure the pages don't scale when you print them out. We printed them onto paper but if you wanted them slightly more robust you could print them onto card. We just didn't have any available at the time.

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Once printed, they need to be carefully cut out, ideally I should have done the majority of that at Uni where they have a guillotine, but I didn't so we tried using a metal ruler and a rotary cutter, and the rest with a pair of scissors. 


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Then it was time for lamination! We don't necessarily have the best laminator in the world (it only cost us £10, but hopefully it will do a good enough job on these)

You need to place the paper dividers into the laminating pouch. Because you have cut them out you don't need to be too careful about how you place them in the pouch, but make sure you have enough gap between them so that you can cut around each divider and have a plastic border (a few millimeters for the border should be enough to keep the seal)

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be sure to leave enough gap around the dividers
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put the pouch in straight

After the sheets have been laminated they are ready to be cut, leave a couple of millimeters as a border around each sheet. The tabs can be difficult to cut around, so using nail scissors can be useful.

Then it is a case of punching the holes. I removed the base of our hole punch and placed the sheet in right side down so I could line the marked hole up with the hole punch.

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Now they are starting to look really nice, and the tabs are perfectly aligned to fit next to each other.
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Next is the moment of truth to check whether the holes are the correct alignment to fit in the binder...
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Luckily they are, although I guess it isn't really luck since I was quite careful when I measured them out and designed them on the computer. They also look quite good since the size of the hole punch was just large enough to remove the circle that was printed. 

Here you can see the dividers in the filofax, I'm very pleased with how they turned out!


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These will definitely help us make better use of our filofaxes! I might even have to make some more dividers if I have more sections that need them. If you are thinking of making some they definitely aren't that difficult to make, if you don't have a laminator you could possibly get away with using card and covering it in sticky back plastic to give it a bit of protection. But definitely give it a go!


Nikki


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