Ok folks, this is my first crack at a actual, real tutorial.
I made something similar to this a few years back from a pattern I purchased but it never quite fit right and I didn’t really like how they put it together. I thought they made it way more complicated than it needed to be.
So the week between Christmas and New Years when I was off work I decided to take a crack at doing my own. My sides family Christmas wasn’t until January 9th but I still needed gifts for my great nieces, plus my sisters. My sisters and I try to make something each year for each other so I thought these might fit the bill all the way around for my sisters and nieces.
at least 2 fat quarters
trim, ribbon or yarn of your choice
matching or coordinating thread
a composition notebook
First press your two fat quarters to get the folds out so you can get an accurate measurement. I used two coordinating prints. Out of each print I cut a 11” wide x 21” long(almost width of fabric) piece of fabric. Then from one of the prints, I cut another piece 6” wide x 21” long.
I used the bolder print for the outside of the journal and the solid for the inside and the band on the outside of the journal. It’s strictly your preference.
Take the 6 x 21 piece, fold in half lengthwise so edges meet and stitch 1/4” along the long side of the fabric.
I used my 1/4” sewing foot. I don’t know what I did before I bought this. My seams weren’t as accurate, that’s for sure.
When finished, you will now have a piece that is sewn along the long edge and open on both ends.
I positioned mine in the center of the journal but you could vary that according to what you like.
I measured 4-1/4” up from the bottom of the outside cover and positioned the strip there.
Then I cheated and used some old stitch witchery fusible tape I had to secure the strip in place so I didn’t have to take the risk of pinning it and having it shift as I sewed it.
I then topstitched both of the long sides at approximately 1/8” from the edge of the strip.
At this point your can easily sew another type of trim on top of this coordinating strip if you want, like I did on these for the great nieces. Some I sewed jumbo rickrack and others another type of ribbon.
Back to the one we are putting together right now though…place wrong sides of your journal fabrics together. Pin in place.
Start stitching approx. 1-1/2” away from your mark and make a 1/4” seam on all four sides of your cover, stopping approximately 1-1/2” from the same mark, leaving a 3” opening. You will use this opening to turn your cover right side out.
Topstitch along the top and bottom edge of your journal a scant 1/4” from the edge being sure to catch the pressed opening where you turned your journal right side out.
Fold in half and press again. This will help define your center back for the next step.
Cut a piece of ribbon approximately 50” long. Find the center point. Lay that in the center of the coordinating strip on the outside of your journal and stitch in place along the center back fold that you just made with your iron.
You’re almost there! Insert the composition book into the cover.
You can use these for a journal, recipes, school, the possibilities are endless. My daughter in law is even using hers to track her fitness goals. I’d like to keep a couple of these on hand for a quick little gift when needed.
If there is something you didn’t understand or I wasn’t clear on, please let me know. If you make one, I would love to see your finished product.