Blog #42

I made this journal from scratch using a swatch of my fabric that features my cat Richard on the cover.

I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was to make a journal although it was a bit time consuming.

I used regular computer paper that I folded in half individually and sewed together in small stacks of ten or eleven sheets using my sewing machine. (I kept the pages together with binder clips while sewing together) This step took a good long while as my sewing machine had to be hand cranked in order for it to make it through the stacks.

Once I had completed four stacks I sewed two together, and then the other two together in order to get two now larger stacks. This took awhile as the needle can only go through the holes that the machine had already made, and it took a bit of effort and a sturdy thimble to do that.  After that I repeated the process with my stitches spaced way out and doubled to get the final stack.

Then I used the stack to determine the size of the piece of cardboard (I used an old gift box which had a thin but stiff type of cardboard as opposed to thick corrugated cardboard) and I scored lines where the folds would go. After checking the fit by folding the cardboard around the paper and making adjustments, I used the cardboard as a guide for cutting out the plaid fabric making sure to cut an inch or so larger than the cardboard on all sides.

I folded the edges of the fabric down and then over the cardboard hiding the raw edges and I machine stitched them in place. The cardboard was thin enough for the machine to sew normally.  Then I sewed on the cat swatch folding under the edges and stitching a seam all the way around. This is the step where I should have sewn on my label, but I forgot and sewed it on as the last thing.

The only thing left to do was to put the pages in the now finished cover. I used gesso because I'm out of glue. Sitting the pages on the inside of the cardboard I painted the top page and the left side liberally taking extra pains to heap it up on the side. Lifting up the "front" side of the cover and carefully aligning it I closed the book. I pressed it really good to make sure it was in place and flipped the whole thing over to do the same steps with the "back" side. I placed a heavy book on top and left it to dry over night. Here you can see the results:


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