What You'll Need
1/4 yard fabric for checkbook cover outside (the light blue with white leaf prints or the multi-color dots in my covers)
1/4 yard fabric for checkbook cover inside (the teal with swirl pattern or khaki in my covers)
1/2 yard fusible interfacing for light- to medium-weight fabrics
Matching thread (I matched to outside fabric.)
Rotary cutter or scissors
Disappearing ink pen
Template - needs to be 7 1/2" by 14 3/4"
For the template, I taped together two pieces of paper, then measured a template with my ruler and cut it out. I've seen a few templates around Blogland for download. Those will likely work too.
Step 1 - With your template, cut one each of the outside and inside fabric.
Step 2 - With your template, cut two pieces of fusible interfacing. You may wish to make the interfacing slightly larger than the fabric so you can ensure the entire piece of fabric is covered. In that case, just be sure to trim off any extra around the edges once you've ironed on the interfacing.
Step 3 - Being sure to follow the instructions on the package, attach the fusible interfacing to both fabric pieces (inside and outside).
Step 4 - (I forgot to take a picture of this step.) With right sides of fabric together (interfacing outward), stitch on the long sides of the fabric with a 1/4-inch seam.
Step 5 - Press seams open. Then turn sleeve right side out.
Step 6 - Press the sleeve, making sure seams are flat. For best results, I usually iron the seams out then fold them and press them together.
Step 7 - If you have one, surge short ends. I don't, so I just did a zig-zag on the edges to stitch the material together and keep from raveling.
Step 8 - (Also forgot to photograph this one.) On the outside fabric and with your disappearing-ink pen, measure 3 1/2" from each short end (where you just surged or zig-zagged). Mark across the fabric with a ruler. Then measure 1/2" from each short end (surged or zig-zagged) and mark across the fabric with a ruler.
Step 9 - Fold the 1/2" line toward the inside of the checkbook cover. Iron at the fold, and clip the corners. (See photo.) This is to reduce bulk when you're sewing.
Step 10 - Stitch 1/2" from folded edge, ensuring you're capturing the fold. Now repeat these last two steps on the opposite end.
Step 11 - At your 3 1/2" mark, fold both ends of the cover into the center. Press with your iron. Now your checkbook will look like mine in the picture below.
Step 12 - Being sure to backstitch at both the beginning and end of your line, sew 1/4" seams down both long sides. (If you don't want to stitch in the middle, you can stop at the end of each fold and start again on the other fold. Just be sure to backstitch.) Then sew 1/4" seams along both short ends. Again, backstitch to secure your stitching.
Clip any straggling threads (like the one that I left in the picture below -- oops!). Put your checkbook in, and you're done! Your very own custom checkbook cover.
I realized as I was writing this tutorial that I don't have pictures for adding the ruffle. I will work on that this week and post another tutorial just for that in the coming days.
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