A New Favorite

January 28, 2010


I have been spending a lot of time in my sewing room lately. I seem to go in spurts with my crafts, one day pouring myself into my knitting, while the next I can not tear my self away from the sewing machine

Back before Christmas, I had an idea in my head to do a journal/sketch book and colored pencil case for my little ones. The first design that I did just wasn’t working for me, and although I thought hard about revising that piece and trying to make it work, in the end I just realized that it wasn’t very functional.

I have been doodling off and on for a bit now, trying to decide what I wanted, and in the end, I went for simple. A sturdy book-like case that can easily carry a lot of pencils, markers or paint brushes, with a large enough pocket to carry many different sized sketch books.

I made this one for my kids, but mine is on the machine, and I am excited to put it to good use.

The Art Book

You will need:
2 fat quarters, one for the inside lining, the other for the outer cover.
1 6×16.5 piece of fabric for the inside pocket
1 16.5×16.5 piece of heavy weight fusible interfacing.
Ribbon, Bias Tape or ric rac for the ties


Cut each of your fat quarters to 16.5 x 16.5. Cut your pocket to 6×16.5
Following manufacturer’s directions, adhere fusible interfacing to the wrong side of your outside fabric


On the long edge of your pocket fabric, fold the edge over 1/4″, and then again 1″, and press. Top stitch the edge


Line up your pocket with your lining fabric, both facing up. Sew the three edges of the pocket to the fabric. Determine how large you want your journal pocket to be, as well as how much you want to space the pencil slots, and mark. Stitch along your marked lines, backstitching at both ends


Determine how long you would like your ties to be, and if you want them to wrap around fully, or to tie at the edges.
At this point you will need to find the center of the sides for ribbon placement.

To do this, fold the top of your case down to the desired length. You may want to use your art supplies or journal to help you measure.

Then center and pin the ribbons.

With right sides together, pin your lining and outer fabrics together. Beginning in the middle of one side, with a 1/2″ seam allowance, sew around the entire piece, leaving a three inch opening


Trim your corners as close as possible, being careful not to cut your stitches. Turn right side out, and press.


With the inner lining fabric facing up, fold over the top of your piece to your desired length. I wanted my fabric to cover the top of my sketch book/journal, as well as the colored pencils.
Once you have determined the length, top stitch down both sides of your piece, making sure to reinforce your stitches as both ends.


I love the ease of use with this book, and the endless possibilities. There is enough room to hold paint brushes, markers, crayons, and pencils. The journal side is able to hold two thin journals together, or one journal and loose leaf paper. It is really easy to make the art book larger or smaller for your needs. Just simply cut your fabric to the desired dimensions, and then follow the above directions.


Once your book is complete, simply tie it up, and enjoy.


I wanted to let you all know that Donna Ashton, the founder of The Waldorf Connection begins her next series of tele-seminars tonight. The seminars are free, and try to connect each of us to the next generation of Waldorf families.
The seminars cover subjects such as science, storytelling, handwork and foreign language. There are eight free sixty minute conferences, and they begin tomorrow.

I will be giving the discussion on handwork on February 11th, and I am excited to get started listening to all these amazing women. I hope that you will join us.

The journal above is a blank book, made of bamboo, which I painted for a little bit of fun

{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

bright and blithe January 28, 2010 at 12:45 pm

This is a great tutorial, Heather. I love the fabrics. These would make such wonderful gifts too…a great alternative to the plastic stuff we usually settle for at the last minute. I should make a batch of these and keep them on standby.

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eliz~ so wabi sabi January 28, 2010 at 2:29 pm

another great project to get me sewing…and thanks for the heads up about the tele-seminars. I'm looking forward to them and appreciate Donna's generosity.

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Andrea January 28, 2010 at 2:36 pm

This is lovely…so many possibilities!

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Andrea January 28, 2010 at 2:38 pm

Beautiful journal/art books!! Love them. I just popped over and signed up for the series. Looking forward to hearing yours!!

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Kelly January 28, 2010 at 2:44 pm

Another great project, thank you!

I hope I can catch some of these seminars – thanks for the heads up.

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Earth Mama January 28, 2010 at 3:42 pm

I love it! These are something all my kids need to have. My oldest has drawings skewn everywhere. I love the blue elephant prints.

:)Lisa

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AdirondackMama January 28, 2010 at 3:51 pm

I'm glad that it worked out so well Heather…I definitely think that the ribbon works easier for the ties. We use felt for the lining of our wraps, I never thought to use interfacing, I bet it is much more stable. It looks terrific, that fabric is so pretty.

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althea January 28, 2010 at 4:23 pm

I love your blog.
pace

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Maeghan January 28, 2010 at 4:37 pm

Super tutorial! i love the fabrics. Thanks for sharing!

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denise January 28, 2010 at 4:45 pm

this is a perfect gift. thank you,

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AG Ambroult January 28, 2010 at 5:12 pm

loving all that fabric. Your art book is great!
…and hee hee. see? it really does seem like EVERYONE is making that chai concentrate. and rightly so! so good.
thanks for stopping by Elemental.

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lorena January 28, 2010 at 6:16 pm

you definitely solved a major problem i had – the pencils would come flying out the top!! the folded over part works beautifully!

beautiful fabric!!!

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Nicola @ Which Name? January 28, 2010 at 6:25 pm

beautiful, heather! i love the fabrics and that you found the style that works! i think it looks fabulous! in finding more rest and a groove, i haven't been crafting quite as much. (well, if you consider cooking and baking a craft, then i have). i have some sewing and woodworking project rumbling in my head and they want out! now to carve time for that back into my schedule.
hugs to you,
nicola
http://whichname.blogspot.com

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Ivy January 28, 2010 at 6:53 pm

Now this one I think I can do. Thanks for the tutorial. And I love your fabric choices!

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Tonya January 28, 2010 at 7:30 pm

Thank you Heather for taking the time to share this!
Warm wishes.

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Sarah January 28, 2010 at 12:47 pm

This is a great project.

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kerry January 28, 2010 at 8:24 pm

Goodness, I need just a fraction of your creativity! I love this project too… now I'm not sure what to make first. This, or the one you shared yesterday…

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Valarie January 29, 2010 at 12:27 am

This is so beautiful. I love your choice of fabric. What a lovely gift this would make as well. Thanks for letting us know about the Waldorf connection.

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jessica January 29, 2010 at 12:32 am

I'm very much looking forward to the Waldorf connection seminars–I am slowly learning more and more about Waldorf education (though our library doesn't have that many books on the topic). I do love the art journal–I'm already thinking ahead to next year's holiday gifts.

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Stephanie January 29, 2010 at 12:55 am

Cute book, Great idea for keeping all those pencils from falling out.

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michelle s. January 29, 2010 at 1:08 am

Thanks for sharing The Waldorf Connection seminars. I am so excited and am listening in right now.

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Sachi January 29, 2010 at 1:35 am

Thanks for letting me know about the seminars. I had never heard of these before and the speakers are so wonderful!

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Jodi January 29, 2010 at 1:51 am

I love how your fabrics all come together — you have a great eye for coordinating. And this looks like a fun project.

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jennifer January 29, 2010 at 2:09 am

This is a great tutorial and beautiful fabrics. I know what you mean about going in spurts with crafts. I could not put down my knitting needles during my pregnancy and now I'm all about the sewing machine. Thanks.

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sandee January 29, 2010 at 3:24 am

I love this! I will have to make some…(three kids)

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natalie January 29, 2010 at 3:37 am

This is awesome!

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Jill January 29, 2010 at 6:13 am

Thank you for sharing this – I have been thinking about making something similar to this for a while now and this just may be the motivation I needed!

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geek+nerd January 29, 2010 at 1:11 pm

I am in love with that animal print! Too adorable!

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geek+nerd January 29, 2010 at 1:15 pm

Very cool post, and yes, I find myself having days like that. I'm actually taking an e-class right now as well, and I haven't done a single project (it's week 3, ahem). I'm trying not to beat myself up about it, but I do feel a little guilty!

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Ann in Indy January 29, 2010 at 2:49 pm

Great idea! My daughter is in college and could use something like this. Must buy fabric today! I'm curious where do you find your journals? I'm somewhat new to your site and really love your creative ideas. Thanks for sharing. Ann in Indy

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Courtney January 29, 2010 at 10:14 pm

This is fabulous – also thank you for sharing the seminars – I actually had a free couple of hours today and the storytelling re-cast meant a lot to me. i think it might help us with some issues we are facing as a family. It was really impactful.

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Shivayamama January 29, 2010 at 11:14 pm

It's funny, b/c I have two sisters, and we are both far apart in age, and relationship, so seeing Julia and Laura gives me hope for my boys. I am glad that you enjoyed it

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Shivayamama January 30, 2010 at 12:34 am

Oh Courtney, I am so glad that you liked the seminar, I really enjoyed it too!
________________________________________

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Courtney January 30, 2010 at 12:38 am

It also reminded me of your fairy sleep story – I may have to re-read that post again. have a good evening

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Lisa Q January 30, 2010 at 2:22 am

what a wonderful project. I made some colored pencil rolls but this is fabulous! thanks for the tutorial…love those fabrics that you put together!

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Jennifer January 30, 2010 at 2:51 am

What an awesome design! Thanks so much for sharing this!

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Shivayamama January 31, 2010 at 6:39 pm

I love that print too! I wish I remembered where it came from, I would love to pick up some more.

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Shivayamama January 31, 2010 at 6:10 pm
Lavinia February 16, 2010 at 5:06 pm

It´s lovely, thank you for sharing the tutorial with us!

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vika February 16, 2010 at 7:26 pm

Great Idea, Thanks!!!!

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Rebekah February 16, 2010 at 10:48 pm

This is so cute! And creative!

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