Thursday, September 13, 2012

Needlebook Tutorial

While waiting for more silk ribbon to arrive so I can finish up my class tutorials...I thought I'd make a new needle book. I wanted one that was really large enough (7 x 8 inches) to hold all the needles I now have in various pin cushions, and have some pockets to hold scissors and such...that I could take to classes. As well as keep it close for my daily use too. I also wanted it to have enough pages that I could use it as a temporary pin cushion when stitching away from home. The book could be made any size and any depth.
It turned into quite a the ideas grew and changed as I went.
The front is constructed from a prior crazy quilt patch (yes, the flowers are laying sideways...but that's it is MY needlebook, and I don't mind). A thin piece of batting was added to help pad the front.
 A piece of foamcore board is the backing for the cq piece, which was laced to it on the reverse side. (I keep an old rotary cutter handy for cutting paper and cardboard. And I use my old dull blades in this cutter, instead of discarding them. They might nick fabric, but work great for paper or cardboard.)
  The front had four pieces of grosgrain ribbon attached to help in the lacing at the back to securely wrap the CQ piece around the foamcore board. The ribbon makes a nice sturdy edge that helps when pulling the threads...much better than raw fabric or even turned under fabric edges. The inside front pocket and lining was folded around a piece of thin cardboard (cereal box) and also laced down.
 There are pockets on the inside front. The outside and inside fronts were were then stitch together and a piece of trim added around the edge to cover these stitches.
The back is padded with foam core board as well; but since the outside is plain fabric it was created by making a "pocket" and slipping the foamcore inside...then stitching up the top closed by turning under the seam allowance. 
 The inside of the back has pockets stitched there too.
 The front and the back have a piece of grosgrain ribbon between them, slip stitched in place. This creates the outside book. You can see the ribbon in this photo, even though it was taken later in the process.
The inside pages are fleece reinforced around the edges with ribbon and bias tape. I'm hoping that this will increase the wear of the book. However, I'm not over enthused at the look of the pages...and might remove all of them and start over one day...but not any time soon. That decision will depend on how the pages perform over time with use.
 I included a photo of the types of needles for each page, where the information was available. I recently purchased a packet of needle cards and used these images; but it did not include beading needles...and other odd types. I copied the cards, printed the image and covered it with clear packing tape to act as a protective cover. I stitched this directly to the page.
 The fleece pages were sewn together as a set; then that entire group was slip stitched to the book outside cover at the back flap area.Then, I opened the pages to the center and stitched a running stitch down the center seam area through the pages and the book spine of grosgrain ribbon. You can not really see this seam in the book center. 
 You can see it in the outside spine, but that will be covered with this outer spine of ribbon. The ribbon is slip stitched into place alone one side, then the other. 
 It is not stretched too tight...and the ribbon is slightly wider than the actual spine. I have a small ruler that slips into the space between the inside grosgrain ribbon spine and this outer decorative ribbon spine. This makes a handy little pocket because the bottom of the ribbon is turned under and stitched down to the inside spine ribbon, only along the bottom spine edge.
Here is the finished spine.
9/16/2012 Edited to Add: Felt also makes great pages!

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