I've had success using those big black binder clips (the kind with the metal thingys that flip down or up) to hold the paper and covers (one at top and one at bottom, maybe one more on the non-bound edge). I then used hammer and a big nail to make the holes (working over heavy cutting mat or board). Then the kids (I had kdg.'s) were able to sew them using heavy string, thin ribbon, or yarn, and a big blunt needle.
Lydia de Toledo