If you don't go anywhere without your notebook, then a writer's wallet may be for you. Reader Conor Buick shares his method for creating a notebook-turned-wallet hybrid.
What we are going to make today is a Writer's Wallet, so everyone please access their inner Martha Stewart. Basically, my writer's wallet is a notebook with a few modifications for carrying my cash and cards.
I used the Ecosystem small-size notebook found here.
Note: If you're looking for the simplest possible solution for a writing wallet, you could buy a previously mentioned Pico Pad (a credit card sized pad with a micro pen found here. This is a tool that will encourage you to write more (or at least that's what it does for me). That's the whole idea behind this. You pull your wallet out often, so perhaps when you have it out, you'll write your next genius insight and turn into Jon Franzen or Twitterer @badbanana (aka Tim Siedell, creative director and joke maker). Some people will be quick to point out, "Hey, why don't you just keep the two separate and pull them out together?" But I have no time for those people. It's a noble idea, which coincidentally, can seem like the dumbest ones, similar to bringing a book to the coffee shop.
What You'll Need
- Stretchy bands
- Super Glue (I used Loctite Control Gel which was excellent, but anything that dries quickly will do)
- Exacto Knife
- Cardboard/Strong paper
- NOTEBOOK (duh)
- Optional: Ruler
Step 1: Make the Magic Wallet
First, we're going to make and incorporate a "Magic Wallet" into our notebook. The Instructable for the Magic Wallet can be found here, and the video below demonstrates how it works (you've likely seen one before).
Tip: Cut your bands longer than needed, it's easy to pull them off the cardboard and re-glue, then just cut off the excess. He calls it a Clever Wallet — insanity right? The picture shows basically what to do. Once you fold the bands across, place your other piece of cardboard over the bands, and fold back/glue the bands' ends to the cardboard.
Then glue your new magic wallet to the cover of the notebook. Glue doesn't need to canvas the whole cover if it's super glue (it's always easy to add more later if needed).
Step 3: Cut Slots for Your Credit Cards and Finish Your Writer's Wallet
The back of an Ecosystem notebook has a little pouch for storing torn out pages. We'll use that for storing credit cards and such. Now you could just leave the pouch alone and simply store cards sloppily away. We're classier than that. We just need to make a few simple slits with an exacto knife.
I only have four cards, perfect for this. All you have to do is stand one card vertically on the pouch. Stand it at an angle like the picture if you want. I've found it's easier to slide the card back in its slot if it's at an angle. Once you've found, more or less, where you want your cards to go, trace along the vertically standing card a straight pencil line. Do that 4 times like the picture. The image has all 4 pencil lines in it. Each one is at a slightly different angle for no reason other than to keep things spicy. Now just cut along each line with an exacto knife. Cut a bit beyond each line so the card fits in easily (always easy to cut more later though).
Tip: You can make another pouch out of cardstock if you have more cards and glue it inside the front cover for more card storage.
You're done with your new Magic Wallet-Notebook hybrid. The notebook band keeps the wallet closed. I have the bills standing straight up. Unfortunately, the bills extend just a bit beyond the dimensions of the notebook (the mint didn't think of Ecosystem notebooks when designing American bills).
Note: when opening the wallet, it automatically pushes the notebook band to the side, opening the notebook.
This is a new writer's wallet. Simpler design. I used a black Ecosystem notebook and made a little pouch out of some semi-durable paper.
Just glue the pouch to the back/front of your notebook. My red pouch is on the back of my notebook so when I'm writing, the money is safe between my hand and notebook. The pouch is a bit wider on its backside so bills catch that and slip in easier. My pouch is that particular length for no reason. I could have made it the width of the bills and stored the bills the other way than showing below, maybe for the next Wallbook/Notellet. I used the same card storage as the last notebook.
You could also put the pouch inside the notebook so the money is safer and you have to open the notebook each time.
You could also, of course make your own notebook from scratch. Lifehacker has a how-to guide for creating a DIY notebook perfect for note-taking. Just scale it down.
Attaching Your Pen
Like any writer, you need something to write with. If you always have a pen on you then this is unnecessary. I used another inch of the stretchy band we used for the Magic Wallet and glued it to the notebook's binding to clip the pen on. For the black notebook (above), I simply clipped a small pen (Pilot G-2 mini) to the notebook's stretchy band. I also tried using velcro, but it failed catastrophically.
Anyway, that's everything, let me know what your ideas are. I feel like I've thrown out quite a few.