Pleated Ribbon & Elastic Bookmark {DIY Reading Gear}

Pleated Ribbon & Elastic Bookmark

Being a stay-at-home mom of a 2-year-old and 8-month-old means that my life is full of noise and chaos from 6am-8pm on a daily basis. When I finally have time to myself at the end of the day, I want silence. TV off. Music off. Quiet talking. And lots of reading. Reading allows me to relax and unwind from a busy day.

I started thinking that with all of the books I read I should at least have a pretty bookmark (or two) to keep my page marked nicely. It seems silly and trivial, I’m sure. But it’s the little things that make things brighter.

This bookmark is super cute and super easy to make. There are so many variations you could make to this little project which makes it great for personalizing for yourself or for a gift for a lucky friend!

The supplies you’ll need:

8″ of elastic – any color or width you prefer
18″ of ribbon
Any adornments you’d like
Sewing Machine

Cut your ribbon to 18″ and cut your elastic to 8″. If you’re reading a small or large book (not the average size) adjust accordingly. Finish the edges of the ribbon by running a lighter across the cut edge. This will melt it slightly so that it does not fray.


It’s time to start pleating your ribbon. Begin by leaving 1.25″ of the ribbon in your left hand and then fold the ribbon 1″ on top of that. Iron it flat.

Repeat this step until all of the ribbon is pleated and there is 1.25″ left on the right side. Once it’s done it will look like an accordion.


To make this easier to sew, pin the pleats down with the pins horizontal. Once they’re pinned down, run the pleated ribbon through the sewing machine with a coordinating thread right down the center. I sewed it down the middle so that the edges of the pleats were free.
A SIDE-NOTE: If you decided you didn’t want to sew the pleats down you could use a hot glue gun to accomplish the same thing. This would be a bit more work because you would have to glue the pleat down on the front and on the back… but it is an option.


Next, sew the elastic to the pleated ribbon on both ends.

And voila! Your super cute pleated ribbon book mark is complete! At this point you could add some cute adornments to it such as a pretty brooch or some cute buttons or even a fabric flower!
565 Ribbon and Elastic bookmark

As a funny (& slightly icky!) side-note; as I was creating this and measuring the ribbon and elastic for the book, I left the book open and stepped away for a few minutes. When I came back to double-check the elastic’s fit on the inside, this is what I found:

Bug in my book!I may have jumped a little… and screamed a lot :-/ GROOOOOOSSSSSSS!

Now, get to crafting & reading, friends!





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