I really like paper. And pens. And notebooks. Oh, who am I kidding? I’m addicted to office supplies.
I have been eyeballing the Arc Customizable notebook system for a while because, well, it is customizable. The punch creates these half-moon shapes in the paper, which then fit around discs, creating a notebook.
I love a notebook as much as the next guy, but the Arc punch alone is over $40, so I would have to make a LOT of notebooks to justify the investment.
That’s when I ran across the
excuse to buy one Happy Planner. The Happy Planner isn’t an Arc system, but it is disc bound, and compatible with the Arc punch. That means I would be able to add and remove things from my planner … I had to try it!
The Arc customizable notebook system is a Staples product, but I had some Amazon gift cards to use, so I was able to order all of my stuff from there. While I initially purchased an Arc punch so I could customize a planner, I was also intrigued by the concept of building my own notebook. Plus, there was no way I could wait until the end of the year to try my punch out!
Arc Customizable Notebook System DIY Step-by-Step
For the front an back cover I purchased the Happy Planner Decorative Planner covers pack – which contains 4 covers! I judged my paper size by these, and cut it just a bit smaller.
The best hack I can share, is that if you are using loose leaf paper and cutting it down to size (I believe that Happy Planner os A5) you can use the holes of the paper to measure! This saved me a lot of time and frustration. I used graph paper, because I like writing on it.
Once all the paper is cut, I punched it with the Arc punch. You can do 8 sheets at a time, so it was pretty fast work. You DO want to take the time to make sure it is lined up properly, because it is easy to insert it wrong.Once all of your paper is punched, attach it to the discs. I used 1″ discs, which will hold 150 sheets of paper, or you can also get 1 1/2″ discs, which will hold 200 sheets.