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Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial
Back-to-School Notebooks. How to make a Paper Patchwork Notebook Cover.
Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Take an ordinary composition notebook and make it something extraordinary.  Using a shortcut technique to create simple patchwork squares with two triangles, you will combine them in a way that you fancy to create a one-of-a-kind notebook to keep track of all your top secret stuff.

Finished measurements: 15.5” x 10.75” when opened flat.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Materials needed:
- 1/4 yard each of several fabrics for patchwork
- 1/4 yard muslin
- 1/4 yard low-loft batting (cotton preferred)
- 1/4 yard lining fabric
- 1 standard composition notebook (measures 9.75” x 7.5”) + pen
- optional: embroidery floss + needle
- oh, and a few extra needles for your sewing machine.  Just saying.

Let’s start simple and go from there.  The notebooks shown in the upper right corner take about an hour to complete and require:
- Cut 6.5” squares — 2 from THREE different main fabrics, and 1 from TWO different end fabrics.  (8 squares total.)
- Cut 1 piece of muslin, 1 piece of low-loft batting, AND 1 piece of your lining fabric — each needs to be to 11.5” x 22.5”.

Here you have 2 squares.   Aren’t they cute?    

   Place them RS together, and Draw a line from corner to corner.

   Using a 1/4” seam allowance, stitch on either side of that line. Now cut down that pen line. 

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

 On WS, press seams to one side,   then again on the RS.  Square  them up & you’re good to go! 

OK, now that we have that out of the way, let’s get to sewing!

Use those 8 - 6.5” squares you cut out earlier to create 8 half-square triangles.  Press and square each up to being a 6” square.
Line up your squares in a chevron pattern that you fancy.  

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

I used these two layouts for this pattern. You can arrange them however you like — just make sure you like your layout before going on to the next step.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Using a 1/4” seam allowance, piece your patchwork, then press it on the WS, and again on the RS.

Square up the edges so that the complete piece measures approximately 11.5” x 22.5”

Now take this pretty patchwork and make a sandwich for quilting.  Layer as follows:
Patchwork RS up on top, batting in the middle, and muslin RS down on the bottom.
Baste the sandwich together and quilt it in a way that makes your heart sing.
***Using a walking foot on your sewing machine will make quilting a breeze.
If you do not have one, just work slowly.  And then ask for one for your next birthday!

If you’d like to make a pen sleeve for the spine, now is the time to do so and attach it along the RS
center spine of the quilted sandwich.  Use your pen as a guide to where you’d like it positioned.

Also, if you’d like to add any sort of embroidery to the piece, now is your chance.  In one version, I
embroidered the pen sleeve before stitching it to the sandwich.  In another, I embroidered what will
become the inner pocket.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

From now on, let’s refer to this as “the cover”.  OK, are you ready to continue?  Cool.
 
- Take the cover and place it RS together with the lining fabric and pin together.
- Using a 1/4” seam allowance, stitch around the entire piece, leaving an 4” opening (for turning) along one of the short ends.  Backstitch at the beginning and end of your stitching.
- Reach down through that opening and turn the piece RS out.  Use a chopstick or something similar to get those corners just right.  Press on the RS and WS.
- Using a 1/8” seam allowance, edgestitch along both of the short ends of the cover.
When you do so to the end with the opening, be sure you are stitching it closed.


Place the cover RS down, with the notebook centered top-bottom as well as having its spine centered left-right.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Fold the cover over the front flap of the notebook.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Pin in place.   

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Repeat on top + bottom of the front and back flaps.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

**Remember that walking foot I mentioned earlier — if you’ve got it, definitely use it here.
Using a 1/4” seam allowance, topstitch the RS TOP EDGE of the cover from end to end, backstitching at the beginning and end.
Repeat this for the RS BOTTOM EDGE.
Just so you know, I broke about 4 needles on my sewing machine doing this because I was a little “overeager”.  Go slow + you’ll be fine.

Press on the RS, slip the notebook inside and you have a nifty new back-to-school notebook!
 
If you’re up for a bit more of a challenge and really really love patchwork,
well then join me on the next page for details on making this little number.

Disclaimer:  This is not a 1-hour project.  Nor is it a 2-hour project.  In fact, I spent about 4 hours on this one.  Let’s call it a labor-of-love piece.
 

 Still with me?  You are SO COOL!
- Cut 2.5” squares — 8 from SEVEN different fabrics.  (56 squares total.)
 Note:  I am using the same fabric at both ends to make life easier.
- Cut 2 pieces of your end fabric (mine is the natural linen/cotton) 11.5” x 6.5”.
- Cut 1 piece of muslin, 1 piece of low-loft batting, AND 1 piece of your lining fabric — each
needs to be to 11.5” x 23”.

Line up your squares in a manner that is pleasing to you.  
**You only need 4 squares of the end fabrics at either side.

Use those 56 - 2.5” squares to create 56 half-square triangles.  Press and square each up to being a 2” square. Line up your squares in a zigzag pattern like this: 



Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Keep going until it looks like this —> Using a 1/4” seam allowance, piece the whole thing together, then press it on the WS, and again on the RS.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Stitch the two 11.5” x 6.5” pieces of the end fabric RS together to either end of the zigzag patchwork.
Press on WS, the RS.

Now sandwich + quilt it, then continue with the pattern as written earlier with this now being what
we refer to as “the cover”.

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Here are a few more ideas to hopefully inspire you to go forth and make these notebooks for everyone you love!

Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

Add ties to keep wandering eyes off your top secret stuff. And speaking of top secret stuff, how about adding a bit of embroidery to personalize it!

Composition notebooks have always been my favorites - I love the hard covers protecting the clean pages, reminiscent of a treasured journal. But, let's face it, they are less than attractive.
That’s where you come in.  So what are you waiting for — get to sewing!

However you interpret this pattern, I hope you enjoy it as much as I have enjoyed putting it together for you.  Happy making!


Notebook Cover Patchwork Tutorial

1 comment:

  1. These are just beautiful, my mum loves both patchwork and notebook so this is an ideal Mothers Day prezzie for her, I’ll start today!

    ReplyDelete