DIY PRINTED FABRIC COVERED NOTEBOOKS
DIY PRINTED FABRIC COVERED NOTEBOOKS + FREE TEMPLATES
THIS WEEK, I'M SHARING A TUTORIAL FOR MY SPECIAL PROJECT FROM LOVE | DAY | SEED, AND SOME TEMPLATES TO GET YOU STARTED! THIS TUTORIAL WILL SHOW YOU A FUN WAY TO CREATE YOUR OWN PRINTED FABRIC COVERED NOTEBOOKS. TO BEGIN, YOU'LL NEED SOME SUPPLIES AND SOME ENTHUSIASM, BUT DON'T FRET; I'LL WALK YOU THROUGH EVERY STEP, JUST KEEP READING ALONG!
WHAT YOU NEED:
01. NOTEB0OKS (I'VE FOUND STAPLE-BOUND BOOKS WORK BEST)
02. WHITE HEAVY BODY ACRYLIC PAINT (I LIKE LIQUITEX)
03. PAINTBRUSH OR FOAM BRUSH (ANY KIND WILL DO!)
04. SCRAP CARDSTOCK PIECE (LARGE ENOUGH TO COVER YOUR NOTEBOOK COMPLETELY, I'M USING 11"X17" BECAUSE I HAVE A WIDE FORMAT PRINTER)
05. SCOTCH REPOSITIONABLE SPRAY MOUNT
06. TRASH BAGS
07. WHITE COTTON FABRIC (1 YD IS PLENTY!)
08. SCISSORS (THE SHARPER THE BETTER)
09. STITCH WITCHERY (OR SIMILAR DOUBLE SIDED FUSIBLE)
10. NEON FABRIC PAINT (OR A COLOR OF YOUR CHOOSING) (OPTIONAL)
11. DECORATIVE WASHI TAPE (OPTIONAL)
12. WRITING UTENSILS (TO FILL OUT YOUR BEAUTIFUL NEW NOTEBOOKS!)
NOT PICTURED: IRON AND IRONING BOARD, AND FRAY CHECK (OPTIONAL)
PREP YOUR NOTEBOOKS
Grab your spray mount and make sure you have a new trash bag covering your spray surface. Lay out a trash bag to protect your tabletop and paint your notebook(s) in white heavy body acrylic paint. paint as thin or as thick as you wish. i chose for my notebooks to look quite artsy with the brush strokes being revealed under the fabric when they're completed but it's up to you! Simply drop some paint onto each notebook and spread it until they're all covered. if you're note careful while applying, you may need to go in with a kleenex and remove any paint you got onto the edges of the pages and make sure that the notebook paper doesn't become stuck anywhere. Then, simply sit back and let the paint dry!
PREPARE FOR PRINTING - MOUNT YOUR FABRIC
2.1 Grab your spray mount and make sure you have a new trash bag covering your spray surface.
2.2 Spray evenly over your scrap piece of cardstock making sure to cover it entirely (especially the edges and corners!).
2.3 Allow the spray mount to dry until it becomes tacky. Handle it carefully.
2.4 Place your cardstock (sticky side up) atop your fabric and trim around the paper to get the approximate size out of your fabric piece.
2.5 With your cardstock laid flat on your table (sticky side up), gently alight your fabric on top of it and set down.
2.6 Smooth with both hands from the top, middle of the page outwards and downwards until no bubbles remain. Note, because you have repositionable spray mount, if you find a crease you can’t remove by smoothing, simply lift the fabric, replace and re-smooth until it’s fixed.
2.7 Make sure to press firmly on the edges (this is to make sure that they avoid getting caught in your printer).
2.8 Once your fabric is completely smoothed and adhered to your cardstock, simply trim around the cardstock closely so your fabric piece is completely flush with your paper.
2.9 Once your fabric is trimmed, you’re ready to pick it up and place it in your printer, just be sure to move onto the next step so you have something to print on it!
PREPARE FOR PRINTING - YOUR PRINT FILE
3.1 Prepare a file that is sized the dimensions of your notebook (when laid flat) plus 1” evenly around each side. Ex. My large notebook states the size is 6 ½” x 8 ¼” so to create my print template, I create a document that is 15” wide (6 ½” x2 + 2”) by 10 ¼” high (8 ¼” + 2”). This sizing allows for the print to have bleed room so when you’re adhering it to your notebook, you have a little wiggle room.
Within this file, you’ll want to add crop marks in a layer atop the placement of your selected Love | Day | Seed print. I chose these scallops, stars, and arrows from the Nordic Collection and prepared a file for each of my notebook sizes. I then clipped the print using a clipping mask to a rectangle layer that was ¼” smaller than the canvas. The crop marks lay on a layer above these two layers so that when I place my printed fabric, the crop marks will be visible and I’ll have an idea of the notebooks edges and binding.
3.2 When your files are complete, you’ll want to make files that you print from. To do this I made an 11” x 17” size canvas in Photosohop (the size of my prepared cardstock/fabric piece). I then grouped the layers from different notebook sizes and layered them accordingly. I then placed these groups into the 11” x 17” canvas. I had two print files, one with the large notebook, and one with the medium and small notebooks. Depending on the size of your notebooks and your printer capabilities, you may fit more or less to a printable page.
3.3 When you’re ready to go, simply load your fabric covered cardstock into your printer as you would any paper, click print and choose the appropriate page size from your printer options. If you adhered your fabric well, it should run smoothly like any paper does and you will have flawless printed fabric once it’s done!
PREPARE FOR COVERING - REMOVE FABRIC
4.1 Pull your printed fabric from the printer and bring it onto a flat surface
4.2 Begin removing the fabric from the cardstock by pulling from a corner and holding the paper firmly in place with your other hand.
4.3 Once you’re finished removing the fabric, it will be slightly curled (which is just fine!) but it shouldn’t be tacky so it should be fine to handle like any fabric.
PREPARE FOR COVERING - REPEATING FOR MULTIPLE NOTEBOOKS
Now is the time if you’re making multiple notebooks to prepare your second printable piece of fabric. Simply repeat all of step two and step four so you’ll have the pieces of fabric for your other notebooks (the small and medium ones in my case). Once you’ve completed those steps, you should have another 11” x 17” of fabric to work with.
5.1 Trim the fabric down the center so you’re left with one piece of fabric for each of the notebooks.
5.2 Once you’ve completed all this repetition, you should gather your three pieces of fabric so you’re ready to move on to the next part of covering your notebooks!
PREPARE FOR COVERING - TRIM FUSIBLE
Place each fabric piece over your fusible (stitch witchery) and trim around them so you end up with three pieces of appropriately sized fusible to match each notebook you'll be covering.
ALIGN AND COVER YOUR NOTEBOOKS
7.1 You’re going to layer your notebook, fusible, and fabric (in that order!) Pay attention to the crop marks (especially the one denoting the center binding) and loosely align them all together at this time.
7.2 Grab your iron and ironing board and heat it up. In the meantime, align your three layers precisely on top of the ironing board.
7.3 Once you’ve lined everything up and your iron is hot, you’re ready to adhere the fabric to your notebook! Press firmly with your opposite hand to flatten the spine and place the iron on your notebook. Press the notebook until the fabric is firmly sealed onto the notebook. The stitch witchery will do the rest – just be sure to iron out all the bubbles and ensure that the edges are sealed as well!
FINISH YOUR NOTEBOOKS
8.1 Once you’re done ironing your fabric onto the notebook, flip it over and trim away all the excess fabric and fusible.
8.2 Once you’ve trimmed all the excess off, you’re notebooks are technically finished! If you’d like to take ‘em and run, you totally can. I do suggest sealing the edges with fray check first so your edges will stay beautiful and crisp, even with use.
8.3 If you’d like to add a little pizzazz to your notebooks like I have, move on to the next step where I’ll show you how to deck out your edges.
DECORATE YOUR EDGES
9.1 Place a new trash bag under the notebook and wrap it around so only the cover is showing. Next, grab your favorite fabric paint (you can’t go wrong with neon!)
9.2 With your fabric paint in hand, line the edge of your notebook carefully from the spine outwards and all the way around. Make sure you squeeze with even pressure, and run the tip along any bumps to smooth them out.
9.3 You’ll only be able to decorate one size at a time so once you finish the top, let it dry for the recommended drying time (mine said 4 hours). Once dry, flip the notebook and repeat the process.
For my small notebook, I simply ran some decorative washi around the edges so that is definitely an option as well! Simply do it side by side and cut a slit down the long sides for the tape to allow for the binding!
NOW, TAKE A CLOSER LOOK!
WANT TO TRY IT YOURSELF?!
Download these free templates with crop marks and the space to drop your favorite pattern into. sized perfectly for the small, medium, and large notebooks listed in the products used below!
* some of the products listed are affiliate links. i receive 4% when you purchase products through the provided amazon link. i have used and loved every item shown and would not suggest without testing each product first, or without using them while making this project. as always, i appreciate your continued support.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this little tutorial and will give custom notebooks a try! Or at least print some of your favorite Love | Day | Seed products on fabric! Well … what are you waiting for? Gather your supplies and give it a go!