journal supplies
Christmas,  Gift Ideas,  Quick Projects,  Tutorials

Easy Journal Cover Tutorial

As an end of the year “Thank You” to a teacher or a great little gift for a friend, this journal cover is quick and easy to make! I have always received a great response from giving these little journals as gifts. This took me about an hour and a half, start to finish.

Here is what I used:

journal supplies

3 coordinating fabrics:  Ticking Stripe, Chalkboard in Green and Allover Tags from the ABC Primer line by Wilmington Prints
Warm and Natural® Batting
Sulky 30 wt Cotton Blendables® #4009 Foliage and #4017 Lime Sherbet
Sulky PolyLite™ #1128 Dark Ecru
Spiral notebook
Sulky KK 2000 Temporary Spray Adhesive
Black Frixion™ pen
Clover® Wonder Clips

Begin by cutting the batting, outer cover fabric and the inside fabric 18″ x 12.” Make a quilt sandwich lightly spraying Sulky KK 2000 to adhere the layers together. Using your Frixion Pen and a ruler, mark the vertical center line down the middle of the quilt sandwich. This will be your first quilting line.

Journal quilting

Put your walking foot on your machine and Sulky 30 wt Cotton Blendables in the top and bobbin. I used the #4009 Foliage on top and #4017 Lime Sherbet in the bobbin to match my fabrics. I suggest a Schmetz 90 or 100 topstitch needle. Follow the line you drew for your first line of quilting, then straight-line quilt the entire piece approximately a half inch apart. I just used the edge of my foot to space the quilting evenly.

quilted and ironed

Square up and iron the piece. I like to iron because it sinks the stitching into the quilt and gives the piece a neater look.

pocket fabric

Cut 2 pieces of the pocket fabric 12″ x 12.5.” If your fabric is directional like mine, be sure the pattern is facing the right way. 12″ is the vertical and 12.5″ is horizontal.

Placing Pockets

Fold the pieces vertically wrong sides together. The folded piece should measure 12″ x 6.25.” These are now your pockets! Place the pockets on top of the quilt sandwich you made, with the inside fabric facing up. Line the raw edges to the left and right sides of the quilt sandwich. Use the Clover Wonder Clips to hold the pockets on then sew a scant quarter inch around all 4 sides of the piece, sewing down the inside pockets. I used Sulky Polylite 60 wt. Polyester Thread in the top and bobbin to do this.

Attach binding

Cut 2 pieces of binding fabric 2.25″ wide and width of fabric (I used the same fabric I had as the inside of the journal). Join the 2 strips and use the Clover Wonder Clips to place your binding on the INSIDE of your journal. I will machine sew both sides of the binding on, so I start on the inside. I also DON’T iron my binding wrong sides together lengthwise. I simply fold and clip onto my piece. This gives the fabric the ability to roll over to the front without fighting the crease that was made from the ironing.

journal binding 3

Sew the binding on with a quarter inch seam allowance. This should be just outside the seam you sewed for the pockets. I used Sulky 30 wt. Cotton Blendables in Lime Sherbet in the top and bobbin for this.

journal binding

Flip the piece over and bring the binding to the front. Ironically, I don’t use the Wonder Clips for this. I just use my porcupine quill stiletto to hold the fabric down just before I topstitch it. This allows me to see the stitching line under the binding and follow it so the stitching will be nice and neat on both sides.

journal_closed w apple

And you are done! You did a great job. Keep the first one for yourself and go ahead and make a second one to give as a gift. It’s “sew” easy, you can make another in a flash.

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