Creative articles about sewing

How to make a book cover using applique

In this post I will show you a super quick way to use little fabric scraps and turn them in to a lovely fabric book cover using applique pieces. This is a great idea to cover an old book, make as a present for someone special or make as a gift wrap if you are gifting someone a notebook.

For this tutorial I have used left over pieces of fabric that I have from previous projects. Some of them are very small pieces which make them great to upcycle into this fabric book cover. I am using 100% cotton fabric because I will be fusing the applique patterns with a hot iron. So let’s get started.

fabric book cover victoria martinez azaro

Tutorial: Fabric book cover using Applique

Materials and Equipment:

  • Sewing machine
  • Iron
  • Applique patterns provided here
  • Iron on adhesive fusing ( I like buying the A4 size sheets)
  • 100 % cotton batting
  • 100% cotton fabric
  • notebook or book to cover

Step 1:

Gather all your fabric scraps and your notebook or book that you wish to cover. Measure the book. My little notebook is 17cms by 19 cm so I am making a final book cover that will measure 19 cm by 21 cm.

Cut 2 equal pieces of fabric for the book cover and the lining (in this case my measurements are 21cm by 23 cm). This will depend on your book. The idea is to allow a couple of cm for the book to fit comfortably. You also need to take into consideration the seam allowances. I am allowing for 1 cm seam allowances all around.

Step 2:

Cut 1 piece of cotton batting the same size as the book cover and the lining.

Place your book cover fabric on top of the batting and start quilting straight lines approximately 5 cm apart. I am sewing double lines separated by 1 cm and then spacing them out by 5 cm but this is up to you 🙂

You can also use a contrasting thread to add some more visual texture.

Quilt the whole book cover. It will look like the photo below.

Step 3:

Download the Applique Patterns here. Grab an iron on adhesive fusing sheet and place the sheet with paper side up.

applique patterns la creative mama

Using the paper backing from the iron on adhesive fusing sheet trace the pattern pieces from the applique pattern template. Once you have traced all the pieces, cut around them. Make sure to leave 1 cm edge around the traced line.

Now you need to fuse the paper pieces onto your chosen fabric scraps. Follow the instruction of the fusing process in this fabric collage tutorial. 

Once you have applied the adhesive fusing templates onto your fabric scraps and you have cut around them, your cupcake should look like this:

applique patterns la creative mama

Now it’s time to fuse the cup cake pieces to the fabric book cover. Follow these steps:

  • Peel off the paper backing. This will leave a glue lining on the back of your fabric scrap.
  • Place a hot non-steamy iron on top of the fabric piece and repeat the process of holding the iron down for 4 seconds and releasing.
  • Repeat with all the different pieces

applique patterns la creative mama fabric collage

Step 4:

Sew around the applique fused shapes using a regular stitch. You can go around the cupcake once or several times. It will be up to you and which look you prefer. In the example below I have only sewn around the cupcake once.

applique patterns fabric collage la creative mama

Step 5:

Cut 2 pieces of fabric measuring the same height as the cover but only 1/3 of the width. These will be the pockets of the book cover. In the photo below you can see different ways of making the pockets. You can add some strips of fabric to hold your pens and accessories and you can also make the pockets in different fabrics.

Sew a hem on one side of the pockets.

Sew the pockets to the quilted book cover and the the lining fabric.  

Step 6:

Fold the book cover to the finished measurement. Cut 2 strips of fabric (binding) to the finished folded book. Sew the binding tape with the sewing machine right sides together as shown in photo below.

Finish the book cover by sewing the binding tape by hand. Roll the tape in itself and sew it neatly using a slip stitch.












This is the final book cover using applique fabric. I hope you give it a go. Also, you can check out more fun and creative ideas on fabric books and fabric journals here. 

fabric book cover using applique patterns from la creative mama



Related content you may be interested in

Comments of this post

0 Responses

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Required fields are marked *

Dear BERNINA Blog readers,

if you want to publish pictures via the comment function, please log in to the blog first. Click here to sign in.

You haven't registered for the BERNINA blog yet? Click here to create your free account.

Thank you very much

Your BERNINA Blog Team