Sunday, April 19, 2015

Quiet Book Exchange, Part II: Cover

Now that I have all my pages, I was able to put together a cover for the quiet book!

It has a ribbon closure, two handles for carrying and a pocket for loose bits in the back. I ended up using the initial of our last name, so that the cover isn't child dependent. I'm hoping these hang around for a while! 

I have another two to make - we had a lot of pages in the exchange! Once I get another one under my belt, I will try to post instructions on constructing one of these. I have been combining ideas from Pinterest tutorials to get the exact cover I wanted.

There are a ton of ways to do this. I would suggest browsing Pinterest and figuring out what features you want. 

Cut your inside and outside fabric based on the size of your quiet book pages. I would recommend at least an inch larger than your pages on each side. (My horizontal pages are 11 x 36).

Do any detailing you want on the pages now. I added an interior pocket and a small, felt name plate on the front. Make sure you keep it at least .5in from your edges. 

The pocket is a 5in square that I folded the edges over 1/4in on all sides, with metered corners and used a zig zag stitch to attach to the inside fabric, again being sure to keep it at least .5 inches from your edges.

 For the pocket closure, I sewed together two strips of fabric, wrong sides together again, with the edges folded in .5in. Alternatively, you could sew them right sides together and turn it all inside out and close the hole. (This way has a cleaner look and what I will probably do next time, but I didn't think of it until just now.) Put a button hole in the strip - you will add a button to the pocket when you are done sewing the cover.

Attach the strip above the pocket with a zigzag stitch. I assumed this strip would get pulled on and attached it twice. The first time the strip was facing away from me, so the fabric was upside down, then I folded it over this same spot and zig zag stitched it again on the crease. 

Cut a piece of interfacing (pellum) to be slightly smaller than your fabric. You will also want to cut a piece of lightweight batting to the same size as your interfacing. 

Now you have another choice - you can make a quilt sandwich or a pocket. The animal print one is a pocket and the pink one I did for Jessica is a quilt sandwich. 

For a pocket, you are going to place the fabrics right sides together with the interfacing on the bottom. It inside fabric with design away from interfacing and then your outside fabric with the design facing your inside fabric.  Do not include the batting or interfacing

For a quilt sandwich, you are going to put everything in the order you want it in. It should go inside fabric with design facing the table, interfacing, batting and outside fabrics with design facing you. 

Either way, pin or baste the fabrics. 

If you made a pocket, you need to add your closure type and handles now if you want them. 

The handles are just three inch wide pieces of fabric sewn on three sides and flipped inside out. Then pin them on the sides of your quiet book. You should pin them such that all you see are the two little tails sticking out - the handles are inside the stack. You can make these as long or short as you would like. 

I used a ribbon closure, but you can use elastic and a button, ribbon, Velcro and a strap or nothing at all. They need to be added into your pocket now, though. Again, all you should see are the very tails, the part that is going to be showing should be inside your stack. If you use ribbon, make sure it is pinned so that it will not drift into your stitching. (Not that this ever happens to me ... or it does all the time!) 

Ok, you have all your details pinned or basted on. Now, take two pins and mark a 3 or 4 inch space on one of the edges (probably not where all the stuff is) - this is the space you are going to leave open to turn. You don't have to pin it, but I always forget what I'm doing and then end up with a tiny space to turn. 

Sew the edges of your stack except for the part you have marked. Clip the corners, making sure not to clip the stitches. (If you don't do this, your corners will be rounded not pointy.) 

Now flip the whole thing inside out. Take a hot iron and iron it, so your edges are nice and crisp. Now you have an inside and an outside. Make sure your handles and closure are firmly attached and are now on the outside of your book. 

Using that hole, slide the interfacing and batting into the pocket you have created. Make sure everything is nice and flat, so it stays in place. Use a blind hem stitch to close the hole, or, if you are lazy like me, just iron the sides in so it looks like it is stitched. Now you need to run a wide stitch (a zigzag or decorative stitch) around the outside to keep those edges together. If you didn't bling hem, watch the open space and make sure your stitch is catching the loose edges you have folded under. 

Wahoo! Your cover is done. Now you just need to either add buttonholes to run your rings or ribbon through or add tabs to run your rings or ribbon through. The tabs have to be attached once the alters are together or it will pull your fabric layers apart. 

If you want to do a quilt sandwich, you just quilt your book using whatever stitch you like. Then you bind your book, just like you would a quilt. You will need to add your details like the closure and handles in when you are binding instead of when you are quilting. Also, be careful of your pocket if you quilt: if you quilt over your pocket, it will remain shut. 

You can put the two button holes on your cover close together, so that the whole ring sits inside the cover or far apart so that the cover sits directly on the pages and the rings come out the cover. It is up to you. (This is a good time to go look at Pinterest and see what you personally like). As for spacing, the closer to your edges vertically your buttonholes are, the more stability your book will have. On a 9in page I did, the center of my buttonholes are at 8in and 2in. Now, you just need to put buttonholes in your pages and add them into your books. 

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