How to Make a Fabric Journal Cover

Project Level: Easy


A notepad with a fabric covering made from beige rabbit printed fabric with an orange ribbon

You will need:

A sewing machine, iron and ironing board, two pieces of fabric and Firm Interfacing.

To work out the size of your fabric.

Choose your note book and measure the length, top to bottom, and add 4cms, (1.5" in old money). 

To calculate the width, measure the front, spine and back of the notebook and add 15cms (6").

My notebook is A5 size, 22x34cms, with the added allowances my fabric size is 26x49cms.

I used 80cms of ribbon but this dependent on the size of your notebook.


Take one boring, generic note book...

Cut your outer fabric, lining and interfacing so they are all the same size (26x49cms).

Following the instructions on the interfacing, iron it onto the wrong side of the lining fabric.


Take your outer fabric and place it face it right side up, ensuring your pattern is also the right way up...(I know it seems a simple thing but we've all been there..)

Measure approximately half way and pin your ribbon to the top so it hangs down beyond the bottom of the cover by about 5cms (2").

You'll need to tuck the tail of the ribbon up as you don't want to trap it inside cover.

Place your interfacing and lining right side down (interfacing side up) and pin around the edges leaving a gap of the left side of approximately 8cms.

You will use this gap to to turn your work the right way.

Sew around the outside of the cover.

Now you need to trim the edges to  5 to 10mm and cut across the corners.

This is also referred to as "mitre the corners" because you are trimming the corners at a 45 degree angle. Think of a Bishops hat... 

This is reduce bulk on the seams and corners.

It should look like this.

Turn your cover the right way round, this will involve pulling some funny faces and some wrestling moves as the interfacing is quite stiff

Press your work firmly.

This will give your work a professional finish.


Hand stitch the gap shut with corresponding colour thread and press.

Fold one edge over approximately 5.5cms and pin.

Double check that your notebook fits snuggly and adjust accordingly.


Pin the sides in place and insert your book, you should be able to close it properly!


Top stitch all around the edge.

Press firmly.

Cut two pieces of ribbon approximately 15-20cms for the ties.

Sew these to the outside of the cover, about halfway, ensuring that you only sew through the top layer of fabric.

I sewed one on the back, folded the cover in half and used the measurement to place the other ribbon.

Attach a button to the front over the already sewn ribbon, again, being careful and sewing through the top layer only.

You are finished. Doesn't it look great?

What are you going to use it for?


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