DIYdiy projects

DIY Plaid Book Jacket

by Natalie Stopka

As far as I’m concerned, plaid will never be out of style – and what better proof than to see it returning to the runway this fall. How about a menswear inspired book jacket to complement your fall fashions? Wherever you carry your journal or datebook, it will be in style.

The measurements here are for a classic pocket size moleskine notebook, but you can size the project to any book you’d like to cover. This is a project for all levels of experience – I myself am no seamstress, and have included illustrations to clarify the process. The sewing can be done on a machine, or by hand using a simple running stitch. Cutting and aligning the fabric is easy, just follow the lines of the plaid! – Natalie

Materials for one 3.5 x 5.5” book book

-wool fabric, about 14 x 7”
-optional – sewing machine

*Look for plaid, herringbone, or houndstooth patterns that complement or contrast your winter wear. You can even cut up old garments to use.
*If you are using a moleskine book, cut off the elastic flush with the cover. This can be reattached later if you like. Measure the height and full width of the cover, including the spine.

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1. Make a paper pattern, adding side flaps that will wrap inside the covers. These should be no more than half the width of the cover.
Height= cover height + 1”.
Width= cover width + 2 flaps + 1”.

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2. For our pocket size moleskine, that’s a rectangle 6 5/8 x 12 3/4”.

3. Pin your paper pattern onto the fabric, keeping it squared with the pattern. Cut your fabric along the edge of the pattern, then discard the paper.

4. Following the illustrations, turn in the seam allowance at the short ends of the fabric and hem. Remember as you are sewing to leave a small amount of leeway, sewing about 1/16” outside the exact measurements. This will allow for the thickness of the cover and keep the jacket from being too tight.

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5. Fold the flaps in with those hems facing up (inside out), and sew at the edge of the seam allowance on the top and bottom. This will leave about 1/2” of excess fabric, which can be trimmed to about 1/8”.

6. Turn the jacket right-side out, then sew down the remaining loose edge of seam allowance, where the jacket will cross the spine.

7. If you’d like to reattach the elastic closure, you can make two small slits in the back side of the jacket and sew the elastic in. These should be right over the old attachment points of the elastic in the book cover. I finished the edge of these slits by trying out my buttonhole skills.

8. Put the jacket on your book, bending the cover back if necessary.

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