How to Cover a Composition Book with Spoonflower Wallpaper

05 Aug 2013

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So, this project is like two of my past tutorials got together and had a baby. You may recall my ever-popular-for-reasons-I-could-never-fathom tutorial for covering a composition book with fabric. And just recently, I did a tutorial where I made some magnetic photo frames from Spoonflower wallpaper.

Well, that Spoonflower wallpaper is so lovely to work with, and I had some pieces left over that looked pretty together, so I thought it would be awesome as a cover material for a composition book. It took me all of ten minutes to make this project! Here's how...

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It's wholly possible that different brands of compo books are made in slightly different sizes, so please take any measurements you see here as a guide, and check 'em against your own book.

I'm using two Spoonflower swatches here, which measure 24" x 12" and cost just $5.00 each. For this composition book, I used a 12 x 13" piece of one swatch and 12 x 3" bit of the other, so you can get several compo book covers out a pair of swatches.

(I should also say, I'm using two Spoonflower designers' work here rather than designing my own: Tatami by Kalla, and Twinkie by Yardwork.)

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Since the Tatami had a bigger repeat, I wanted to make sure it sat in a logical place on my book cover. So I measured it against the cover, and drew a line where the bottom edge of the book would be. Then I cut along that line with a metal ruler and craft knife, so I could use the edge to line up against.

(You can skip this step if your wallpaper doesn't require it.)

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…Then, figure out what width you'll need in order to cover most of the front, leaving the spine alone for the moment. (For my book, 6 ½" was enough.) Cut two pieces that wide by 12" high.

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Now brush some water onto the back of the wallpaper pieces with a sponge brush. That frees up the glue embedded in the paper, which I think is 100% awesome.

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For my book, I lined the bottom edge I'd cut earlier up with the bottom edge of the book. You might not need to do this. You might want to line the long edges up instead. Press the moistened paper down onto the cover, adding a little extra water at the edges as needed so they're good and stuck.

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Lastly, trim away any excess wallpaper from all edges with a craft knife. Then repeat this process to stick the other piece of wallpaper to the back cover.

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Neat and pretty, right? Now let's add a contrasting spine.

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Now, the Twinkie wallpaper has a very pronounced design, so I decided to use it as my cutting guide. I didn't really do any measuring to come up with a spine piece…

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…I just cut a 12" long strip that was roughly as wide as I needed, and wrapped it over the book. Then I cut away one row of the pattern at a time until I had a width I liked.

Brush water over the back of this wallpaper as before.

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If you moisten the spine piece generously, you'll have plenty of time to adjust it before it sticks completely. Try to line the wallpaper pattern up with the spine edge of the book as best you can.

Notice, there's some extra wallpaper at each end of the book – you'll trim that away in a moment.

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I couldn't resist adding a few hexagon embellishments to my book. I'm using a new hexie punch from Fiskars here, which they very kindly sent me to try for English paper piecing.

(Hoo, boy is it ever dandy for that!! Punch all the templates you need, out of any old paper you have lying around. Change your life, that will. Oh - but I digress, don't I?)

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The beauty of these is, all you have to do is moisten the backs and stick them on like stickers! You could cut any shape you wanted. Cool, right?

(I outlined my hexies with a fine-point permanent marker so they'd pop a little more.)

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Finally, place your compo book under something heavy for a half hour or so while the wallpaper paste dries. Then, trim away the excess wallpaper at the ends with a craft knife.

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…And you're done! The wallpaper is flexible and durable and takes beautifully to this application. Happy stylish note-taking!

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