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Mrs. D

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Making a fabric journal cover with pocket . . .
Cut off one leg of blue jeans.  Trim to a rectangle of 12" x 26".


Begin decorating with strips of fabric to cover holes and stains.  Notice the leg has a bit of flare to it, preventing the blue jean fabric from laying flat.  Let me show you how to fix that.


Cut the flare with scissors, allow the fabric cut on the left to sit on top of the fabric on the right side until it lays flat.  Pin, and take to the sewing machine and zig-zag stitch the snot out of it, and while you are there stitch over the holes.


  Now then, let's cover up those holes and that stain.  Sew two strips of fabric together.


Stitch the 2-piece strip in place, and top stitch.  Or, add decorative stitches instead of top stitching.  Just get it nailed down.  Press.


Use a larger piece of fabric for the backing, with batting in the middle and add the blue jeans rectangle that measures 12" x 26" on top.  Stitch in the ditch and/or top stitch the decorative fabric strips to quilt all the layers together. 


I finished quilting by adding big wavy lines of stitching.  My 1992 Kenmore used for this project--as it has a nice overcast stitch around the perimeter of the 12" x 26" rectangle.  

After add the overcast stitching, I turned the top edge 3/8" towards the inside of the fabric journal and pinned, and then turned the bottom edge 3/8" towards the inside of the fabric journal and pinned.  I top stitched 1/4" on both top and bottom to secure.

20fj.jpg  I followed those big wavy lines to decorate the surface with rayon/polyester cords--narrow zig-zag.  I stitched a strip of fabric to both ends, flipped, and pressed.

After pressing, turn the strip under, and stitch in the ditch on the right side to secure.  Trim away excess fabric underneath. 

22fj dry fit.jpg 
Turn the left and right margins inward about 4" to create a sleeve for the dollar store composition 100 page tablet.  Pin.  This is a dry fit and helps you figure out where you want to pin the pocket.23fj dry fit.jpgSide view of the dry fit.  

I cut the high bumpy ridge off of the pocket.  Backed it with fabric.  Stitch around perimeter with zig zag.  Trim away excess fabric.

27fj.jpg  Arrange some strips around the pocket with right sides together.  Flip over strips and press in place, then top stitch. 


Press 2.5" strip in half to make a crease for a center line reference.  Unfold, and refold the top and bottom edges towards the center and press.32fj.jpg 
Fold one more time, and then top stitch to secure.


With the sleeve pinned, top stitch the tie in place.  Stitch close to the sleeve, but not into the sleeve.


When you do your dry fit, you'll discover where you'd like the pocket to sit on the front of the journal.  To the right of the pocket, top stitch only ACROSS the 3/4" tie several times to tack it in in place.

Top stitch the pocket in place.  Afterwards, you can turn under the 4" sleeve and pin.

Then with pins in place on the 4" sleeves, top stitch top and bottom of the fabric journal to secure the sleeves.


I added a wool medallion to pocket using a blanket stitch, crewel needle, and No. 10 crotchet thread.  The kitty cat button I found at St. Vincent de Paul in the notions section.  


Mrs. D - Wisconsin

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Reply with quote  #2 
Very good tutorial Linda, thank you! You always make things look so easy.


Olympia Washington

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Reply with quote  #3 
Great project!! I can see these in sizes to cover my machine manuals in a Victorian flair!!

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this is a great tutorial. at back to school time I used to buy the composition books on sale and make a bunch of these. very popular as teacher gifts

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Well done.  Could you hear my sigh of relief when I read that you cut off the thick bumpy part of the original pocket seam to make it more manageable? !!! 
The tutorial you made makes this seem doable, although I don't have your artistic touch.  Love your work.  Hope you are feeling better every day.

from Minnesota

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Reply with quote  #6 
Thank you so much for the photo tutorial. 
I hope you are feeling better now! 

KarenH in OK

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