How to Make a Mini-Zine: A Step by Step Guide
Got plans this weekend? How about a creative activity that doesn't involve too much commitment or cost?
I know just the thing. How about making a folded mini-zine? If you've got a piece of paper, some scissors (or an Exacto knife), and some drawing supplies on hand, you've got all the materials you need for a zine! And zine-making is wonderful for self-expression and relaxation.
So grab some paper and scissors, and let's do this!
Step 1. How to Fold Your Mini Zine
Check out this video (below) for a demonstration on the mini-zine fold. This kind of zine will give you eight pages to work with when it's done.
Steps 1 and 2: Get your paper and fold it in half, then open it up and fold it in half the other way. You should see a folded cross on the page as 2. illustrated below.
Steps 3 and 4: The next step is with your piece of paper open, flip it over and do a quarter fold of the sides of the paper into the middle (step 3 below). You should now have eight folded panels on your page. Now fold your paper back in half ready for the next stage (seen in step 4).
Steps 5, 6, and 7: Now it's time for the cut. Keeping your paper folded in half, you'll notice a centerline, cut along this line until you meet the next fold (center of the paper) as seen in step 5 below.
The last step is folding the zine. With your paper folded in half lengthways (step 6 below), you'll notice your cut at the top and that you can now push the ends together so that the middle of your zine fans out like in illustration step 7.
Steps 8 and 9: Now fold the two ends of the zine that you're holding together. This will form the front and inside page of the zine. You'll then have the back cover that you need to fold in place. Check out the illustrations below or go to the 1-minute mark on the video to demonstrate this fold.
Sometimes it takes practice to get the zine neat and pages lining up, but the real felt quality of zines are their imperfections. That's their charm!
After you've got your zine folded, I like to get a graphite pencil and write little page numbers at the bottom of each zine page. This step helps during the decorating stage of the zine because you'll typically open it back up to fill the pages.
Step 2. Decorate your Zine
Okay, the fun part where you can begin to explore ways to fill your zine. If you find you get overwhelmed with blank page syndrome (like me), that's okay. Use this copy as your draft. Or jot some ideas down first on another piece of paper.
Have a quick think about the materials you'd like to use. Paper, stamps, stickers, pens?
What will your zine be about?
A day in the life of ….
Favorite Sunday activities
Your favorite plants
Quotes that inspire you
A brief comic or story
Favorite self-care activities
Don't be afraid to go random with your ideas. More will flow as you make zines, and pretty soon, you'll have a list a page long with zine ideas to try!
Now, open your zine so that it's flat and go to town on the decoration phase.
I can't wait to see your zine creations!
Illustration Credit: Sasha Rounsefell