If you’ve ever been intrigued by traditional English paper piecing but been put off by how long it takes to make anything then I’ve got the perfect project for you as part of the ‘Lets Make Christmas’ Blog Series….a neat and nifty personalised notebook cover!
I was really excited when we got in these new pre-cut hexagon templates and matching hexagon fabric packs made from lots of gorgeous Libery Tana Lawn! The hexagons come on perforated sheets so its really easy just to break them off!
Having pre-cut hexagon fabric makes things so much quicker as well!
I wanted to think up quick and easy projects that would use them, without committing to a huge paper pieced project!
I had this awesome idea once that I would make a paper pieced hexagon quilt but 5 years later it’s still the size of a cushion cover so I think I’m going to stop there!
To make the notebook cover you will need
- One pack of pre-cut hexagons (I used the 1” ones)
- One pack of pre-cut fabric hexagons (I used the 1” ones) or you could use little scraps of fabric
- Medium weight backing fabric - I used this organic Linen Look fabric (the amount needed will depend on the size of your note book – see step three for how to measure up)
- Medium weight interfacing
- A tiny bit of toy stuffing (optional)
- Embroidery thread (optional if you want to put some words on it)
- A short length of ribbon or ric rac (for the book mark)
- A notebook (I got mine from Paperchase)
Just click the highlighted text above to add these items to your shopping basket.
Step One – Hand Tack or Glue the fabric to the hexagon templates
In the past I have spent ages hand tacking the fabric to the hexagon templates but this time I used this Prym Aqua Glue Marker. Its great! It holds the fabric in place long enough to do what you need to do, doesn’t damage or wet the fabric and is easy to peel off later once its dry!
I put the glue around the edges of the hexagon then place it glue side up on the wrong side of the fabric, then just stick the fabric around the hexagon – so quick and easy!
Step Two - Hand Sew the hexagons together by hand
This is where tradition holds true and you still need to hand sew them together! I found it quite relaxing though and it didn’t take too long.
Place the hexagons right sides together and sew with a whipstitch or overcast stitch.
I used 7 hexagons to make the flower design and picked a darker fabric for the centre.
Once the hexgons are attached, gently press the edges with the iron,
and the peel off the fabric and take out the hexagon templates.
Step Three – Measure Note Book and Cut Out Main Fabric
With the notebook closed, measure the height of the notebook and the distance from the edge of the back cover to the edge of the front cover. Add 3cm to each of these measurements. This gives a 1cm seam and 0.5cm ease. If the cover is thicker than a few mm I’d add an extra 1cm for ease.
Cut out two sections the same size and iron interfacing onto one of them.
Also cut out two sections for the inside cover part. There should be the same height as the main sections. To calculate the width of them measure from the cover edge to about 3cm from the spine and then add on 2cm for the hem.
Step Four – Hem the Inside Cover Sections
Press 1cm, then 1cm again towards the wrong side of the fabric to hide all the raw edges and create a hem. Top-stitch in place. You could add extra pockets to this section if you wanted as well.
Step Five – Decorate the outside cover with your Hexagon design
Place the main fabric section over the notebook, taking account of the seam allowances, and then line up where you would like the hexagon flower to go. I placed mine more towards the top to leave room for the writing at the bottom.
Pin in place and then slip stitch around the outside edge to attach it onto the fabric. Leave a little space and put a small amount of toy stuffing underneath it to give the flower a 3D effect, and finish sewing it on.
I then did a running stitch around the centre hexagon to make it look more like a flower with petals.
Using a pencil (or one of the disappearing markers) write on a template of any words you’d like to have. Then back stitch over it to embroider the writing on.
Step Six – Sew the layers together to make the cover
Lay the outer cover (the one that is decorated) with the right side facing up. Place the inside cover sections right side down, lining them up with the edges. Place your ribbon or ric rac bookmark at the top centre.
Place the other main section on top, covering up all there other sections. Sew them together with a 1cm seam, leaving a gap to turn inside out. Trim the corners to reduce the bulk.
Turn inside out and press flat, making sure you push out all the edges. Top stitch very close to the edge all the way around – this will also sew up the gap.
And you’re done!