Whatever your inner artist needs to create, build yourself the perfect handbound book with this course to capture all of your beautiful art and precious words.

In Basic Bookbinding, you will learn how to bind four different types of journals. This course is great for beginners and will explain what tools you need to get started, plus options for using what you likely already have on hand. Each tutorial has step by step photos, and written instructions so that it feels like a friend is next to you, helping you through each stitch.

Vanessa has created a beautiful, simple, and infinitely expandable set of four tutorials for you in this course that will help you create unique and personal books. With this course, you will be able to fulfil all your own creative needs and desires to create the perfect custom book to store all of your beautiful art and precious thoughts in.

The projects in this class are suitable for children and adults, beginners and experienced art journalers who are ready to stop buying boring, run of the mill journals. The books you create with these techniques are perfect for art journaling, writing, list making, idea catching, collaging, cutting, pasting, and anything else you can imagine doing in your notebook.

There are no rules or standards you must follow when bookbinding. This is a technique based course that will be your base for creating the perfect journal to suit your needs.

Your teacher

Vanessa Oliver-Lloyd


Vanessa is an archaeologist and an artist. She has been binding books since 2012 when she discovered how much she loved choosing her own papers and putting them into a book. Her love for paper patterns and textures shines through in the books she makes, both for her use and for that of other artists. She loves to share what she has learned.

Lesson Plan

In the class

Messy Artist values

Being a Messy Artist means embracing the messy middle, valuing connection, being enthusiastic, and kind.

Visual teaching

Video, text, and image based lessons to give an all-encompassing learning experience.

Expert advice

In Get Messy classes, teachers share secrets, processes, and techniques openly and with a whole bunch of heart.

Actionable exercises

Action steps to help you begin practising what you learn right away. We kinda pride ourselves on how practical our classes are…

Print-ready workbook

A beautiful, printable workbook to accompany you on your creative adventure.

Art tribe

You don’t only get the best teacher, but you get the best classmates. You have access to the course teacher, student support, and inspiration through the Get Messy Forums and the course hashtag.

Student art

Pssst: You could be making art like this…

This class is included in the Get Messy Membership or available for purchase on its own.

As a member of Get Messy, you have access to the class as long as you are a Get Messy member.  If you prefer to have lifetime access, you may purchase this class separately. This means that you will pay a one time fee for access regardless of your status as a member. Lifetime access is not tied to a membership and will give you access for the lifetime of Get Messy. As long as this class is offered, you will have access. 


Included in the Get Messy membership

$39 per month 

Access to the class as long as you are a Get Messy member.

Access to the entire Get Messy library – 20+ classes, 30+ seasons, 1000+ art journaling lessons, 100+ teachers

14 day money back guarantee

One-time Payment

Access only to the class


Lifetime access to the class, regardless of your status as a Get Messy member

14 day money back guarantee

Should I choose the one-time payment or membership option?

You have the option for purchasing this class on its own or as part of the membership. 

The choice depends on how you create.

Membership: the Get Messy membership is here for the creative soul with restless hands and a busy mind (and schedule), ready to cultivate a consistent art habit that allows you to release your truth, emotions and dreams onto the page. For those who prefer to live an all-encompassing creative life with catalysts that spur on the creative habit.

One-time payment: for the creative who loves knuckling down and diving deep into a class. Someone who prefers to focus on one thing and take the time it requires before moving onto the next. The bonus is that you get to keep the class forever and it will wait for you during your busy seasons and be there when you’re ready again. You might also be wanting to test the Get Messy teaching style out a bit and this is a good way to dip your toes in.

What format do I receive the class in?

Upon purchase, you will be redirected to create a login for the private site. You can choose your own username and password. All of your content is accessible to you under one username.

The class will be available through this private site, along with a workbook in PDF format for you to download and print.

Do I have to start on a specific date?

No, this is a self-paced class. You start when you are ready and work according to your own rhythm.

What do I need for this class?

  • paper
  • awl
  • thread
  • needle

How long do I have access to this class?

This class is available for free in the membership and you will have access as long as you are a member. If you purchase the class separately, you will have lifetime access (that’s Get Messy’s lifetime, the class isn’t going in the will!).

Can I contact the teacher if I have questions?

Since this is a self-paced class, we recommend tagging the teacher on Instagram when you share your work or sending her a DM. 

Can I share my work and what I learn in this class?

Yes! Please share your work and your responses to the class on your social media sites of choice. We love Instagram, so share your pages using the course hashtag #gmbasicbookbinding and you may see your work shared on the Get Messy account. We also have Galleries with student work within Get Messy for very specific inspiration.