Make Your Own – 7: Fabric Book Sleeve

Image credit: Anastasia Bow-Bertrand
Image credit: Anastasia Bow-Bertrand
Image credit: Anastasia Bow-Bertrand

In honour of all things I love (World Book Day looms on 6 March), follow this guide to create a pretty book sleeve. It will be the time to judge a book by its cover. Please note: no books will be harmed in the making of this treasure.

Difficulty: 2/5

Total Creative Time: 30 minutes with/one hour without sewing machine

Shopping List:

Fabric (linen or plaid), ask for a ‘fat quarter’ (any haberdashery)
Cotton, needle, pins, tape measure

  1. The following instructions can be scaled up or down, but I used a pocket sized Moleskine notebook (same dimensions as Ryman’s own version). Cut one end of elastic binding if there is one (can be reattached later).
  2. Measure the height and width of the book and draw out a paper pattern. This should be the length of: [(notebook width x 2) + spine width + 5”] and height of: (height of notebook + 1”). Pin template to fabric and cut out.
  3. Put fabric pattern side down and turn in the short ends of the fabric 1cm on each side, then hem using running stitch. Fold each short side over again by 2”, then sew across the width (long sides) of this rectangle (1cm each side) again using running stitch.
  4. Flip over and turn right way out. Hem the loose edges of the long sides with blanket stitch.
  5. To re-attach the elastic, make two slits at the corresponding spots on the back cover of the sleeve – prepare these holes as you would a buttonhole (see YouTube). Feed the elastic through then re-attach the cut end with several cross stitches to secure.
  6. Iron, and slip on! 
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