Crafty Ways To Cover A Book: {How-To}

Here are a variety of ways you can make notebooks, paperbacks and books of all kinds a little more special. Some are permanent, decorative options while others are slipcovers or wraps that can be reused over and over. Many involve sewing but there are a couple crafty solutions as well. At the bottom you’ll find a vintage tutorial for making a custom-fit with oil cloth using two different methods: Glue (permanent) and Pocket (replaceable).
Colorful Strips: Made with strips of pretty material, muslin, button and elastic hair band closure.

Mini: Made with scraps of material, tab & velcro closure. Inner pockets to replace items as needed, easy to make custom size.
Custom: Uses decorative paper, spray adhesive and sealed with Mod Podge (optional), attach ribbon for bookmark (if desired).

With Inner Pockets: You can switch out items as needed with this project, has a button and elastic band closure.
Permanent: Super easy using pretty quilting cotton and fusible web.

For Paperbacks: A side is a pocket, and the other side closes with a cotton tape.
Quilted: Easy to make these in any size you like. Wraps around and is held in place by ties.

Quick: Lined with flannel, inner pockets to switch out items easily. Button & elastic closure (can hold a pen if desired).
Fabric Pieced: Scroll down page for instructions, finished size: 6″ x 8″, folded, but can be easily adjusted to size you need (scroll down page).

Patchwork: Replaceable. Made with charm pack squares, material and fusible web or iron-on adhesive.
Patchwork: Teaches a shortcut technique to create simple patchwork squares with two triangles, then combine them to create a one-of-a-kind notebook. Free pdf tutorial download.

Scripture: Nice! Features inner pockets to slide the Bible into, handles for carrying and a button & loop closure.
Journals: Made with strips of cotton prints lined with fusible fleece and tied closed with coordinating ribbon.

Felt Blankets: Features an outer pocket to hold a small notepad and a loop along the spine to hold a pen.
Mini Memo: Make a nice reusable piece for 3.25″ x 4.5″ sizes (free template download available via pdf).

Planner: Ruffled strip across the front while inside features inside pockets to hold a pen and supplies.
Paper Wrapped: Wrapped in brown paper (can be recycled bags) then a strip of decorative paper is glued over top (can type title, author on the front first).

Woven Maps: Cut 1/2″ strips from an old map or atlas pages, weave together then apply woven sheets with double sided tape.
Scrappy: Fabric scraps are stitched together to make a 12″ x 27″ rectangle, lined with batting and backed with muslin.

Here’s an idea: Keep your cookbooks (or other items) clean by covering them with oil cloth. You can either glue the cloth directly on top or make a pocket cover. These two methods are outlined below (including diagrams).

Glue Method

Make a pattern by laying the book, opened at center, on paper and tracing around it. Allow about two inches at top, bottom and both ends to fold under. Cut away the corners from the part that folds under, and also cut away a V-shaped piece from the middle at top and bottom–to allow the cloth to fold under without buckling. See diagram below.

Cut the cloth from the pattern, fit it over, and glue the part that turns under to the inside.

Pocket Method

If you do not want to paste or glue the cloth to the outside, a straight strip of cloth may be used, making pockets at each end to slip into.

Cut the cloth longer than the measurement when the book is open. Draw pencil lines on reverse side at both ends. Allow about 1/8″ extra width top and bottom. Fold at pencil lines, and bind top and bottom to for pockets at each end. See diagram above.

Can use oil cloth, fabric or heavy paper.

Adapted From: How To Make good looking-inexpensive Things For the Home With Blenback Oil Cloth (1920’s/1930’s).

Related Posts


    • debbi siebert

    When I was in school many years ago I would cover my blah notebook with fabric (my paisley pattern got lots of comments). Just measure, open the notebook flat, cut around leaving enough border to fold to the inside of the notebook covers, and glue with a liquid fabric glue (Elmer’s works). You can “paint” a thin wash of glue to the outside of the notebook as you adhere and smooth the material. Trim fabric overlap as necessary to achieve a smooth and neat finish. Allow to dry. A rickrack or trim of some kind can be glued on the inside of the rough edges of fabric using a hot glue gun.

    • Eve

    Thanks, debbi. I am going to do this. Seems easy enough. 🙂

    • tiff

    How about some kindle, nook, and ipad covers? The holidays are coming and I really need those!! Love this website. Keep up the great work. =)

      • Tipnut

      Hi tiff, just do a search for iPad using the search box at the top or bottom of this page and you’ll find a list loaded with goodies 😉

    • Morgy

    What about doing velcro on the inside of a book? I have to make a biome book for Science and it has to be 1st and 2nd grade level? Do you think this is a good idea……. on one side of the page I will have an envelope that will have animals and plants with velcro on the back… on the page beside it I will have a biome scene with velcro in diffrent places on it, and the children have to put the animals in the scene. What do you think? Do you have any more ideas?

      • Macy

      that is a neat and cool idea

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.