Today is the day where you get to see just how ‘crazy about fabric journal covers’ I was with this assignment. Seriously, the more journal covers I made, the more the ideas came pouring into my head. I’d be out walking the dog – ‘OH – that would be a great idea’. I was quilting quilts – ‘OH – that would be a great idea’. And I got to test out the techniques on the Husqvarna Viking H|Class 100Q as well.
There was nothing that machine could not do. It never let me down once.
Let’s start with the appliqued posies I made when I was test driving the H|Class 100Q. Did you get a posie made? I would love to see your journal cover or other item that you created using the posies.
I started with the blue background posie.
Found two coordinating fabrics. I’m a very precise sewer/quilter. My pieces are always accurately cut but in making the journal covers, I loosened up – and roughly cut pieces. No need to get too crazy about this process. After all, we are supposed to be having fun.
I made a guest book for the retreat house. After I assembled the top, I had this brilliant idea of adding the words “guest” and “book” to the cover.
I had to free hand draw those letters (not my strength, but no other option). The preciseness in me said that I could not leave those letters raw edge, so I ended up doing a blanket stitch around them. I know – the H|Class 100Q stitched around them all with no problems.
It was fussy, but well worth it in the end. I apologize for the quality of the photo – I left the book at the retreat house without getting any pictures.
On this journal cover, I created a piece of crazy patchwork that was slightly larger than the size needed for the journal cover. Then I had fun trying out all the stitches on the H|Class 100Q. What a great way to see all the stitches and test the variety of widths and lengths that are available.
I used several different colors and types of thread. No problem for the H|Class 100Q. The FIX button on the sewing machine came in very handy for this exercise. I simply hit the FIX button – the sewing machine tied a knot to secure the end of the thread. I used the FIX button at the beginning and end of each row of stitching.
I decided to try putting a pocket on the inside cover. I started by putting interfacing on the inside of one of the journal cover lining pieces.
I hemmed the top of the pocket and folded one side under. Then I laid the pocket onto the journal cover lining. The two raw edges of the pocket are lined up with the raw edges of the journal cover lining.
Then I stitched down the folded under edge and reinforced the top corner of the pocket.
Next I bought a small crocheted doily from the thrift store. I appliqued it to the journal cover. In addition I did a couple of other rows of stitching in the center of the doily to hold it in place.
I also added a book mark to this journal cover.
Add the bookmark between the journal cover and the middle piece of the lining. Make sure to tuck that book mark up so it doesn’t get caught in the bottom seam.
Found some decorator fabric that has been sitting in the stash for YEARS. Guess what it was earmarked to be used for? YES – journal covers. I find that very funny. The journals were even with the fabric. Well I can say that I have used it now. I also added a book mark to this journal cover.
So the H|Class 100Q can sew fabric, but can it sew other things?
I have always wanted to “make” my own fabric. I got out the craft glue and some tissue paper. I laid out a base of freezer paper, then a piece of muslin as the base for my “new” fabric. Then I ripped up the tissue paper and coated everything with glue/water mixture. Let it dry over night.
This is what I ended up with. At first, I was a bit disappointed because the end result was a bit bland, but that was the only type of tissue paper I could quickly get my hands on – OK – so it was late at night! Now we have a new piece of “fabric”, but what can we do with it?
The H|Class 100Q sewed through all those layers like a knife through butter. I could barely wait to get it turned inside out. Oh yes – that was a test of strength for me. Perhaps I didn’t need quite that heavy of a stabilizer on this particular fabric. But I got it turned and pressed and I LOVE IT. Like I said – I was a bit disappointed at first, but now I love it.
With some of the left over scraps that were cut off when I trimmed the piece, I had enough to make a tab closure. I did not turn it inside out. Just folded in half and stitched around the edges. I sewed a piece of Velcro to the journal cover (before adding the lining) and then the other part of the Velcro to the tab.
I am thrilled with the piece.
I know – you want to know how I did that…
I made the image in a word processing program. Then I taped the piece of lining (make it bigger than needed as the edges will fray when you take the tape off) to a scrap piece of paper. Then I ran the paper and the fabric through the ink jet printer.
Give it a good press to heat set, trim to size and ready to sew.
Are you seeing a pattern here? My obsessive side is coming out loud and clear.
Like I said – once I got started, I couldn’t stop. The ideas were coming faster than I could process them. WAIT – I’m not done. There’s more.
My friend Mary gave me some orphan blocks that she no longer wanted. Hmmm – I wonder if there’s anything in that bag that could be made into a journal cover?
These look interesting.
In this case – the block was a hexagon.
I just added black to make the block the size I needed for the journal cover. I chose to put the block in the center, but you could position it wherever you like.
Don’t forget to take seam allowances into account.
Got a scrap of embroidery that you have no idea what to do with?
I made this many years ago and it has been languishing in a box. While I was coming up with ideas, I remembered this piece. The design came from Lorelei Designs and I confess my machine embroidery skills were not the best (I’ve since improved), but it is perfect for a journal cover.
This journal cover started out as a mini-quilt. The president of our guild gave us a challenge at the beginning of last year. We each got a bag with three buttons. We were to make a mini quilt. I got mine part way done and then time ran out. As I was searching for more things to make into journal covers, I thought of my unfinished mini quilt. Yep – the size was pretty much right on.
Did a bit of stitch in the ditch and another journal cover is born.
Did you notice the elastic and button closure on the journal?
Well I had to make use of my three buttons. Two of them became decorative elements and the third button is functional. I used a color coordinated hair elastic that I cut apart at the join. Then I sewed the elastic into the seam. I reinforced that seam a couple of times.
I even used the machine to sew on the two flat buttons. I know – you can do anything with a sewing machine. Well not everything. I had to hand stitch that fancy button on. It had a shank and I didn’t think I could get the machine to stitch that, although I am sure there is some way!
Before I go – here are a couple of tips to help you with your journal cover making.
If you do not have a ruler big enough to cut the journal cover – then simply put two rulers together to get the size needed. Just watch when you cut where the two rulers meet – you do not want to nick your cutter on the second ruler.
You may want to reinforce the corners of your journal cover. I stitched around the perimeter of the journal cover, then I went back and stitched an L around the corner. Just in case I got too excited in the process of poking out the corners.
I made 17 journal covers. Oh dear – a tad obsessive to say the least. In case you are checking up on me – I gave one journal cover away already and my daughter has hers.
There you have it – way more than you ever wanted to know about making journal covers.
But imagine the possibilities in the great gift ideas – can be customized for anyone and any occasion. So simple, the journal cover can be made by anyone. The possibilities are endless.
Don’t forgot that ALL the stitching on those covers – the stitching on the outside and the assembly were all done on the Husqvarna Viking H|Class 100Q. Goes to show you that you do not need a top of the line sewing machine to make beautiful things. You just need a basic machine and some imagination.
Don’t forget to send us pictures of your journal cover. I would really love to see them.
It’s fun to be crazy about fabric journal covers – it inspires so much creativity and on that note – I am off to work on another project.