another book cover

I believe in the last post i had mentioned i would be more technical here but…i dunno, im on some sort of spree so i just couldnt stop myself to take “during” photos. Check it!

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I finally made a template and got the measurements exact. The best part is there are just TWO seams! Neither of which can be seen once the cover is reversed. (This does not include sewing the embellishments on.) Its so simple too. I cant wait to share it with everyone, but I want to make a few more with the template first before i try to explain anything.

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Plus, if i do anything akin to a tutorial, I need a better light source. And Id like to know where my iron is so you dont have to sort out the wrinkly fabric (gosh, wouldnt that save me some trouble when trying to cut and sew straight!)…If you want to start gathering supplies, aside from the obvious fabric and thread, I use fabri-tac, ribbon for the bookmarker, and a little trinket to tie it off – buttons, beads, pendants, whatever suits you. This cover also sports a ribbon down the spine, and you might have seen my other ideas of piping and whatnot here and here.

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I am almost back into the world of crafting I think. My house is still under renovation (we should be finishing the laundry room this week and Ill post photos) but I decided to not let it deter me anymore. I mean, my craft room is pretty much done so…so what if the rest of the house is a war zone? I can just go in there and shut the door and crank on my electric heater while i crank out some crafty goodness.

I believe I will have a lot more to show you soon, but let us start with more book covers. You may remember Tofers book cover? I learned a lot – especially because i do not have a pattern. Just a rough measurement of the one that inspired me. I examined it and tried my best to replicate it, but i feel like it is too difficult for a novice sewer like me, to really justify making more than a few.

I spent the better part of a day using my brain and trying to figure out a simpler method. The results? I can whip these suckers out in no time compared to other projects, and you only see the seam once you open the book, as the only visible seams are along the pockets for the cover. And honestly, those could be hidden too I suppose. I hadnt thought of that yet til just now. Thanks blog!

The first cover is hideous, and well you just need to get over that. I was using some scrap fabric to get the logistics worked out and before I tried anything on pretty fabric, i needed to do a test run. It worked like a charm. On this version, I used piping. And if i were to do it again, i would actually have the pockets be a different piece of fabric so that the piping could go all the way around the perimeter.

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I was too excited to wait til my next shopping spree at the fabric store, so I just went with what i had. The color match isnt perfect but I couldnt stop myself from pushing on. No piping here, but instead some ribbon detail down the front. I learned two things with this one: a) i forgot to include the book marker on it and the ugly one, and b) i shouldnt use really flimsy fabric for both the inside and outside pieces. It just doesnt have the quality feel and wouldnt help protect the book much.

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The last one thus far was made differently yet again, as you can see. Using the same measurements, i just adjusted for having the spine area a different fabric, with the piping and additional seam allowances. This was the same day that i did not go shopping so, again, color matching is hit and miss but I am undeterred.

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So, I hope to add some instructions someday on how to do it. Ill at least be more technical with my next book cover post, if not also include all the appropriate photos of the different stages during the process. I have lots of other ideas for these – not just with embellishing, but maybe latches, handles, pockets? I foresee many trials in my future.

Janu the whale

There is this cute little kid that I had promised a slew of  toys for, and she is now a whole year old! Man, how time flies. I will attempt to make her a gift every month for the year, as long as I can rack up enough sea themed goodies. It will be fun to see how much better Ill become after all the practices.

Since this is the littlest she will ever be on her birthday, I started with the largest of the sea creatures – a whale. I found the pattern over at Small Dream Factory. Its not the whale I had envisioned originally, but in the end, making a humpback whale was pretty cool. I only wish that I had enlarged the pattern a bit (the whale is only as long as my hand).

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Arent you proud that I was oh so clever enough to think to stick some yarn out the top for the water spout? :) Of course, I really dig embroidery, so i just had to embellish the polka dot fabric (which, by the way, was gifted to me and has therefore a bit of an heirloom quality to it).

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The pattern suggested to use felt for the eyes, but I wanted them to stick out more so I used some of grammas buttons I had left over from the baby shower. Here I ran into a problem though, as I sewed myself into a corner. The buttons were too close to the edge to use the sewing machine (OH! Did i mentioned that as part of our wedding gift, Pseudo-Mom-turned-MiL gifted me her awesome Bernina and all kinds of goodies?!?!) So i sewed what i could, and hand stitched the rest. Then i was paranoid I could never turn it, what with these giant buttons and all, but luck smiled upon me, phew!

I also was clever enough, if i must say, to add some detail on the underside. I just poked some yarn through, then went back over it with white thread to tack it down.

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To top it all off, it is stuffed with some bells inside so it rattles! She loved it, however briefly that lasted, and honestly that was more than I expected. But apparently I won her with the buttons, so i will keep that little tidbit in mind!