Sketchbook Cover with Fabric + Mod Podge

July 24, 2013

Lately I've taken to shoving this little Strathmore sketchbook into every purse, backpack, or lunch bag that I happen to be carrying. I used to bring around a big 9x12 affair, but I've learned the importance of tiny sketchbooks. They are so easy to carry around, and now I find myself doing quick no-pressure sketches when I am out and about.

You can tell I don't create any little masterpieces in here, though, because I don't exactly treat it nicely. The paper cover is bent and wrinkled. It is also SUPER boring.

I decided to cover the front and back covers with fabric to make it prettier and sturdier. :) I found this darling, blue, swirly, brocade-y fabric at JoAnns on super sale and just had to pick some up. Since our sewing machine is broken, what is better than a quick no-sew project when you have delicious fabric just sitting around?

How to Make a No-Sew Fabric Sketchbook Cover

It's really super simple. :) You'll need:

A sketchbook or notebook to cover
Mod Podge
A paintbrush
(optional) cardstock

Progress photos courtesy of my little sister!

To begin, cut a piece of fabric close to the size of the cover. Make the length and width of the fabric around 1/2 inch longer than the length and width of the sketchbook.

Next, coat the cover with Mod Podge. They do sell special fabric mod podge, but I found that my regular stuff works just fine.

Like so!

Set the fabric ontop of the Mod Podge glue and press it firmly-- you don't want any air bubbles!

Open the sketchbook cover, fold the excess fabric over, and glue (or tape) the fabric onto the backside of the cover.

Next, cut out a piece of fabric (or cardstock, as I chose) to the exact dimensions of the sketchbook cover and glue it onto the inside of the cover.

Ta-da! It's a quick and simple project, but it jazzed up my sketchbook quite nicely. :)

The backside of the fabric is lovely, too, so I used that side on the back cover. You can see that some of the wet glue bled through the fabric-- unfortunately that spot shows even when the glue dried. Beware of bleed-through glue!

I've decorated sketchbooks with doodles, collages, and stickers in the past, and I even made a pretty stamped-paper cover for my 30 Day Drawing Challenge book, but this is the first that I've used fabric on!

Also, check out my epic new Noodler's flex fountain pen. I love it. :) I'm starting to become addicted to writing tools, and at $20 this is my single most expensive pen. It's worth it for me, though, because it writes so beautifully and lets me do some unique calligraphy styles. (Ignore the poor calligraphy in this drawing! It's just what I did late at night after decorating my sketchbook with fabric).

What's the most unique thing you've ever done to decorate a notebook or sketchbook?
P.S. I'm starting to pack for college already! I'm overwhelmed in a wonderful way, and I'm so excited for my classes. :) My little sister is going to be born in just a couple of weeks, too, and I'm just bouncing up and down with excitement! Here's to life being crazy but good. :)

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  1. My jaw just dropped a little at your "poor" calligraphy. I love celtic knots.

  2. It's such a beautiful scrapbook now! And I love the drawing with your calligraphy! I wish I could also do that! :)


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