Normally it's around 5 degrees Celsius here at the beginning of March, the year 2014 however brought us temeratures of 15, 16 and even up til 18 degrees! Woot! My internal clock immediately jumped to Spring Cleaning time and I couldn't help myself when I started a BIG clean up in the kitchen. Once everything was spick and span I realized that 2 of my cooking books didn't meet the spick and span criteria anymore. They were really worn and torn and badly in need of fresh new covers. Problem was they are 3 ring binders which aren't that easy to get especially not in cute patterns and or colours. So I figured it was time to get creative.
decided I wanted fabric covers because I love the look. Of course not
the best choice for your to go to cook books. I mean there's a reason
the original covers are tattered and stained. But when my mind is set on
something I see only challenges and no problems that are too big they
can't be solved. I managed to come up with a solution and lo and behold
it worked! I thought it might be fun to share how I did it so you can
copy my idea if you want to. I mean... it's not just for cook books! LOL
my final result. Volume 1 is covered with a small plaid cloth and
Volume 2 with a bigger one. The green binder next to the 2 of them
contains my hand written recipes.
sanding block, b. brush for applying the gel medium, c. gel medium [you
could also use mod podge or something similar], d. fabric [not too
wrinkled otherwise you best iron before using it], e. pencil or fabric
crayon to make marks, f. scissors, g. decorative tape, h. contact paper
I started on my covers I sanded them with a sanding block [a]. It's how
I got rid of grease and stains so my gel medium would actually stick to
both the fabric and my cover. If you are using a new book,
notepad or journal you can probably get away with skipping this step
but I'd give it a little rub anyway just to be safe. Then I wiped of my
book covers with a damp cloth to get rid of the sanding dust.
that I opened one of the books and laid it down on the fabric that I
marked all around, including a hem of approximately and inch [2,5 cm].
Then I cut the fabric to size.
I closed the book and added gel medium all over the back side and
spine, making sure I covered the whole areas. I then carefully placed
back the book on the right side of the fabric and pressed the book down
firmly. Make sure you check that it is smooth and securely adhered to
your book cover. At this point your fabric is just stuck to the back of
your book and the spine is already covered in gel medium. I then added
gel medium to the front cover, grabbed the fabric and carefully pulled
it against the spine and over the front cover while rubbing it with my
free hand to make sure I got rid of air bubbles and wrinkles. I turned
the book and also rubbed the back neat and tight. My book now looks the
same as in the image above with the only difference that now the fabric
is glued to the covers.
It's the hems I need to deal with now.
For this I cut off all cornes at angle of approximately 45 degrees
leaving about 1/8 of an inch [3 mm] margin between the corner and the
edge of the cut.. You could make marks but it's not a problem if the
angles slightly differ so I did it on sight.
made two cuts in the fabric by the spine also at an angle of app. 45
degrees. The cuts should end with where the cover creases. Do this on
both ends of the book.
add some gel medium all around the edge of the left inside of your book
and smooth the fabric over the edges. Pay attention to the corners and
make sure you pull the fabric firmly over the edges. Do the same for the
right inner side of your book and the spine bits. I was covering a
binder in which case the spine bits are very easily to smooth over the
edges since there's lots of room to work. If you are covering a book
you'll want to make straight cuts that allign with the width of the
spine and add your gel medium on the fabric bits instead of the cover
itself and push those bits down into the little gap between the cover
and the binding with a letter opener or a knife.
I'd done both my books I left them to dry and continued working on them
the next day when I prettied up the fabric edges with some decorative
tape and repeated the whole covering process with contact paper to make
them stain proof.