Thursday, August 30, 2012

Notebook Cover Tutorial

You will need forty 2.5" squares, a piece of batting 16.5" by 10.5", a fat quarter and a composition notebook. A typical charm pack (5" squares) will make four of these pieced covers. Just cut the charm squares in half both vertically and horizontally to get four 2.5" squares from each charm square. This is what I did for this notebook cover.

Start by laying out your squares in a 5 by 8 grid. When you are happy with the arrangement, sew them together in pairs.

You can sew them into rows and then sew your rows together. Or do like I do, sew them together into four patches so you can spin the centers to reduce bulk.

I add the top pairs to the middle four patches, then this to the bottom four patch and finally sew these all together to create the pieced outside of the cover.

Next you'll need to cut your fat quarter. This will be the lining and the side flap pieces into which you slip the notebook into the cover. Fold your fat quarter in half so that the selvedge is closest to you and cut a 10.5" by 21" piece and a 4.5" by 21" piece. Cut down the first piece to 10.5" by 16.5". Cut the second piece into two 4.5" by 10.5" pieces.

Press under one of the long edges of each of your 4.5" by 10.5" pieces a quarter of an inch. Then do it again. Now topstitch this down with matching thread.

Lay your batting down and your pieced cover on top, right side up. Then put your side flap pieces on top of this aligning the raw edges. I pinned the side flaps in place.

Baste the layers together by sewing all the way around the edge with a 1/8" seam allowance.

Flip this over and get your notebook. The corners of these notebooks are rounded. Place the corner of the notebook on your batting with the edges of the notebook 1/4" away from the raw edges of the batting. I just eyeball this. Trace the corner of the notebook on to the batting to use as a sewing line. Do this for all four corners. You can also do this on the lining fabric. My lining fabric is black so it would have been too hard to photograph this step if I did it on the lining fabric.

You can barely see the traced corner at the top left of this photo.
Click the image to enlarge it if necessary.
Now pin your lining fabric right sides together with the basted piece. Your batting should be showing on one side and the wrong side of your lining fabric is showing on the other side. Pin these together.

You need to leave about a 2" opening for turning this right side out. Make sure this opening will be underneath one of the side flaps. Mine is in between the two pins in the bottom right corner of the photo above. Sew everything together using a 1/4" seam allowance. At the corners sew on your drawn line as you go around the corner. And be sure to leave that opening for turning!

Clip the corners off to reduce bulk and turn it right side out leaving the side flaps flipped over wrong side out over the pieced cover.

Sew the opening you left for turning shut using matching thread. I put a couple of pins in my opening before sewing it shut. You can see them in the bottom left hand corner of the photo above.

When you have stitched the opening shut, flip the side flaps back to the lining side.

Insert your notebook and enjoy!

If you want some directions to print out, you can download the pattern here. As always, if something is not clear to you please just ask in the comments. If you would like for me to answer your question, please be sure I can contact you. If I can't, then I will just leave a comment on this post with my reply.


West Michigan Quilter said...

This is great! I had just this week decided to make a notebook cover and thought I'd have to go looking for a tutorial. Thanks so much for the directions and pattern! I love the one you made.

CBH said...

Thank you so much for this post. I want to let you know that I posted a link to your blog in Creative Busy Bee Craft Inspirations, under the Page 4 post on Aug. 31, 2012. Thanks again.

Mama Pea said...

Great tutorial. I like some of your construction steps better than the pattern I have! I can never remember how to get the centers to spin on the four patches. I need a tutorial on that. :-)