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Embroidered Book Cover - Front Panel Finished

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5 February 2008

Embroidered Book Cover - Front Panel Finished

The making up of the Front Panel

It's a little out of square - see the top right. I hope that when I sew it onto the actual book cover I might be able to fix that a little. Other than that, I don't know what to do. I can't wet it because of the gold. I'm not that worried about it.

Getting the corners neat, and invisible from the sides and top was a bit of a nightmare. Lots of oversewing.

The difference in the couched gold on the edges - two sides with three threads, the other two with two different threads - didn't make as much difference as I thought they might, because the hemming has pulled them over to the actual sides a bit (given the panel is a few mm thick). When the panel is sewn onto the cover, it'll be raised above the velvet cover.

I've put in a panel of felt on the back of this panel, so it's of even thickness (rather than raised edges because of the folded over edges, then thinner in the middle).

I decided not to with the back flap because I decided that it was sufficiently small that it's not going to make a difference in its' er, ' even raised-ness'.

Now onto making the actual cover, according to Lady Martel's book cover making instructions (which I put in a post somewhere further down).

I'm doing the lining of the book cover in a maroon lining material (that thin silky stuff?)

Little Decorative Bits for the Completed Cover

As a reminder of what the actual book I'm covering looks like :

See how the back cover extends over the front, and the book is tied shut by strings extending from that back flap. They tied around buttons on the spine (of which you can just see the edges).

If I place the two panels where they are to go .....

and of course there will be the black velvet cover between the panels and the book, to sew the panels onto.

The book cover folds over the edges of the book in order to stay on. ( I have a feeling that a lot of people reading this will be saying 'oh, is that what she meant by all this front/back flap stuff all this time!! *grin*)

After the construction of the velvet cover, I'm going to have some fun playing with different little things, and making more design decisions! It won't end up looking entirely like a "Silk and Spangles" book cover from the 16th C though :-). Having the book of a Coptic construction (ie the back flap and spine buttons) is mainly why.

It's occurred to me that I need

* two new flat "buttons" - On the actual book spine they are of blue leather, but these will be covered by the velvet cover.

I could cut holes in the cover (make buttonholes) so they could poke through but the bright blue leather doesn't actually go with the book cover and it's panels.

I need to research how to make these. I've read about them, especially in 18th century Embroidery Techniques (book) but I need more on how to *make* them.

* to cover the beads that are on the ends of the strings (purely decoratively).
I found a lovely buttonhole stitch covered button method at

and want to use that. NOT in gold - I have so much gold in the piece, it's practically made it 'vulgar'.

Hand made trims (braids) for the edges of the velvet cover also come to mind (like finger looped braids) but I'll see if the cover needs them when I've gotten that far.

Incorporating the existing strings (which are plain white) into braids is another idea. No way would I cut those strings from the cover - they'd have to be incorporated as is. They are actually sewn into the book. (into little blue leather panels - you can see them on the 'naked' book)

The front cover did have two lines of black and gold lace sewn to the edges.
I put it on because it reminded me of the bobbin lace of the time.
I took it off because I thought it was excessive.
It may end up going back on again.

It occurs to me that it's been far too long since I mentioned that this lovely book was made for me by the lovely Meisterin Katarina Helene. Without the book, the project wouldn't exist.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful! I have a feeling the photos dont do it justice. I want to make a book cover now!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008  
Blogger Michael said...

It's looking really great! It helps a LOT to see it laid out on the actual book - makes so much more sense of the design.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008  
Blogger celeste said...

This is really turning out beautiful! I have wanted to make a book cover for a long time and now seeing yours come together, I think I should push this project to the top of the to do list.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008  
Blogger Mary Corbet said...

WOW - I love it!!

I bet you're suffering from end-of-project blues, though! Well, I would be!

It's gorgeous, Megan! Congrats!!

Thursday, February 07, 2008  

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