As we begin 2011, I wanted to make sure I had a place to record all of the good things that happen each week. I am finding that the more thankful I am, the less little problems and setbacks seem to bother me. I know this is not revolutionary, but it definitely requires practice. And repetition. Kind of like embroidery.
Yesterday, I shared a little sneak peak at the embroidery I did for the cover of this journal. It occurred to me that some of you might want to make your own gratitude journal, so I decided to write up a tutorial. However, I realized that the beauty of this project might be in using materials and a notebook you already have on hand. So instead of sharing all of my measurements and instructions, I created a worksheet so you can make your own custom pattern for any notebook you’d like to cover.
Click on the image below to download the worksheet (PDF file).
[This pattern is designed to work with a notebook that has a little heft to it. If your notebook is very thin, you may want to adjust the "ease" measurement in the Calculate & Cut section of the worksheet.]
After you use the worksheet to measure your notebook and determine what size to cut your fabric, you can follow these simple instructions to sew up your fabric book cover.
1. For Option 2, stitch the three pieces of fabric together to create one long piece the same size as your lining.
2. Optional: If desired, embellish your cover with embroidery. To embroider the words “give thanks,” I wrote out the words in pencil directly onto the fabric and back-stitched the letters using 2 strands of red embroidery floss.
2. Pin your lining and front cover pieces together right sides together. Stitch around the top, side edge, and bottom of your fabric leaving one edge open.
3. Turn your work right side out and press. Fold in the raw edges by 1/4″ on the open edge and top-stitch.
4. Fold the flaps in around your notebook cover to determine where the folds will be. Top-stitch along the top and bottom of the book cover as close to the edge as possible (1/8″ or less). The top-stitching will hold your flaps in place and create a nice detail along the bottom and top of your covered book.
I hope you enjoy. If you have any questions at all — or if you catch an error, please let me know. Best wishes for a year of many thankful moments.