"Do You Hear What I Hear" ?

I was looking through my Japanese craft books when I found the simplest fabric book cover pattern.
The book cover I made fits books from 3/4" thick to 1 1/2" thick. This is the 1 1/2" book.

There are only a few basic steps so please don't sneeze and close your eyes or you'll miss the tutorial!!

Measurements for Cutting Fabric for My Book-9 1/4" (h) x 16 1/4" (w)
  Measurements for Width
  1. Measure the width of the cover and multiply by 2 (for front and back cover)
  2. Measure spine and add to width
  3. Add 4 inches for inside flaps (2 inches each front and back flaps)
  4. Add 1 inch for seams (1/2 inch seams x 2)
Measurements for Height
  1.  Measure the height of the cover
  2. Add 1 inch for seams ( 1/2 inch seams x 2)

  1. Pick the loveliest fabric in your collection
  2. Cut one fabric piece for the outside
  3. Cut one fabric piece for the inside
  4. Cut interfacing 1" less from width and height ( I used Pellon 911FF - Fusible web)
  5. Prepare bookmark to baste to right side of the outside piece (optional)

  1. Iron fusible web to the outside fabric
  2. Pin together the right sides of the outside and inside fabrics
  3. Baste the bookmark to the right side of the inside fabric
  4. Sew along all edges; leaving a 2" gap along the bottom edge for turning


oops, this is a different book cover
  1. Press 
  2. To determine size of flaps, open the book cover, and with book in place; fold over the flaps to fit the book (not to snug). Pin flaps in place
  3. Top stitch along top and bottom edges ( I used a 1/4" edger sewing foot ). The top stitching secures flaps.
  4. Check the "gap" used for turning. Is it sewn closed with the top stitch? If not then go ahead and close the gap with a ladder stitch. This is the video that helped me with the ladder stitch.

That's it!

Now that you have the basics...have fun personalizing your book covers with pretty embroidery, felt, flowers, appliques, quilting, button art, fabric photos, kid's handwork, and ???

I did this one patterned as a house ....

.... please come in for a spot of tea

(Christmas music melody) "Do you hear what I hear?" Oh yeah, Christmas bells are a' ringing in the near distance.  Pledging handmade will be a bit easier with this simple book cover pattern in your repertoire.  Enjoy.

Kokeshi Doll

 I made this doll for an esty customer.  Etsy custom orders are not offered at the moment but I have difficulty with saying 'no' and really, I don't mind. This doll came to life after three or four prototypes, playing with different shapes and her face. There were times when I thought I would give up.  But at the moment it all came together, I was so happy...and relieved.  Working on custom orders forces me to focus and complete a design. I routinely fleet from one project to another, leaving disappointments unfinished instead of persevering. As I 'speak' there is a pouch lying lifeless on my table after fussing with it for hours.  I might try to revive it tomorrow or toss it.

I'll have to make couple for the shop for sure.  But I dread crocheting more of these thread flowers!!

Happy Happy DIY Etsy Annoucement

    Today I had my eyebrows shaped using the threading method developed in India.  Tears welled in my eyes during the process...it was PAINFUL.  A double strand of cotton threading is used to grab and remove the hair.  With this method a line of hair can be removed at one time; leaving a cleaner line. So it was not only painful but I could literally hear the hair being ripped out of my skin.  Oh, what I would give to have naturally perfectly shaped eyebrows..is that too much to ask?...sigh.

    Now that pain is behind me, I finished my latest tutorial ... a fabric envelope pouch.  I love this pattern.  Its simplicity lends itself to "make it your own".

    zakka inspired fabric envelope pouches
    I found this pattern in an edition of Cotton Time magazine.  The only thing altered was the size.  And really that's the beauty of this pattern...the size can be altered to make pouches for eyeglasses, cell phones, gift cards, business cards....and greeting cards!

    So here goes ...

    Step 1 :
    • Cut 2 pieces of fabric - 6" wide x 12" height
    • Cut 2 pieces of interfacing - same as fabric size
     Step 2 :
    • Draw in sewing lines for the top of the pouch on the wrong side of the main fabric
    • Mark a straight line 3.5" down from the top
    • Find the center and draw a center line
    • Draw in the two side lines as shown in the pic
    • I didn't want to hassle with the point at that top so I drew a straight sewing line 1/2" from the top


    Step 3 :
    • Embellish your outer piece (this is optional of course..sometimes all you need is a fabulous piece of fabric).  For my pouch, I stamped an image from Greeting Farms with a fabric ink.  I then embroidered the images and added 'rick rack' and a cotton lace. 
     Step 4 :
    • Join the bottoms of the outer piece and lining
    • Press the seams

    Step 5 :
    • Fold the joined bottom in between the outer piece and lining to form the pockets. 
    • Flatten piece and pin around edges
    Step 6 :
    • DECIDE the closing method for the pouch : tie? velcro? button hole/button? snaps? I decided to use the cord since that's the easiest for me. 
    • Sew around the envelope pouch with a 1/4" seam. When you get to the top "point", slide in the cord and hold in place as you sew the top edge, back stitch to make a stronger stitch for the cord.
    • Leave a gap on one side to turn the pouch right side out
    • Don't sew the bottom
    Step 7 :
    • The FINISHING - Sew the gap close.  Sew on the button for the closure (optional). 
    ~~ Ta Da ~~

    Hear Ye Hear Ye ~~ Announcing a new category for my etsy shop : One-Of-A-Kind Sale. This pouch will be the first item to be added.

    Don't be shy...let me know if you have questions on the tut!

    I Heart Embroidery

     A simple Russian doll ... my interpretation using felt and free hand embroidery.  I love embroidery work...and the simpler the better for my hands.

     Here's a couple of pouches that I made for my etsy shop

    Kawaii Embroidered Pouch

    Musical Tweet Embroidered Pouch
    Working on this project took my memories to a time when I attended Japanese Language school at the urging of my parents.  I am so glad that they did.  Knowing how to read and write simple Japanese characters and understanding a few words makes me feel connected to my heritage.  And hey, now I can use what I learned back then in crafting projects...how great is that?!?

    The Bird and Flowers are rubber stamp images from Imaginisce.  These simple images lend themselves well to an embroidery project.  

    I'm anxious to do more of these!