Book With A View


  • Sketchbook with window mount
  • Fabric larger than book for main cover
  • Materials for embellishment sample
  • Lightweight Vilene for stabilising fabrics
  • Double-sided tape
  • Spare plain paper for window mounts and testing

Finished Size

Dependent on book chosen

Skill Level



Similar sketchbooks are available at art and craft stores nationwide, contact Artys on 01737 245450 for details of your nearest stockist

Getting Started

  1. The first task is to measure the book and the opening and write the measurements down. Drawing them on pieces of paper is a quick way of measuring your work as you go.
  2. Make a sample to go behind the open window. Sue used a mixture of sewing onto paper with metallic threads and added glitter and glitz with metallic colours. The sample should be larger than the hole by about 1in all round. Remember the edges will not be seen so keep your best work for the centre. Alternatively, make a large sheet and use a window cut in some paper to select the best area.
  3. Other techniques that would be good are Trapunto, corded quilting, or Somerset folded patchwork.

Outer Fabric Cover

Figure 1: Cut along dotted lines
Figure 1: Cut along dotted lines
  1. Select a fabric that will complement your chosen picture – in this case a plain black fabric. Cut the fabric larger than the book cover to allow for shrinkage when stitched and to give you the ability to move it around to the best position later. Press the Vilene to the back to stiffen the fabric slightly.
  2. Using the same metallic thread as before, Sue free machined swirls all over the fabric.
  3. Look again at the book measurements. Cut a selection of different sized rectangles from coloured paper and place in position. Decide which proportion you prefer and cut your outer fabric cover to this measurement.
  4. Satin stitch all around the edge. You may need to go round twice to get a nice solid line. On the WS draw the inner aperture as a rectangle and draw in the diagonals as shown in Figure 1. Cut along the diagonals.
  5. If you are unsure, make a paper copy from greaseproof paper first and cut along the diagonals. Place in position and the triangles should fold behind the aperture to give a hole. Adjust if necessary and then cut the fabric version.
  6. On the inside of the hard cover, place double-sided sellotape around the aperture, place the stitched fabric underneath, turn over the four triangles and stick in place around the edges as shown in Figure 2.
  7. Turn the book over and stick the outer edges in place again using double-sided tape. Position the inner picture, RS down in the aperture, stick down with tape as before. Use tape around the edges of the book to press a blank page on top to create a neat and tidy finish. Now you are ready to start your masterpiece.
Figure 2: Fixing the outer fabric cover
Figure 2: Fixing the outer fabric cover

Other ideas for presents

This small corded sample would work
This small corded sample would work well
  • For a new mum with the child’s name or initials appliquéd in the window
  • Using fabrics from the wedding or bridesmaids dresses for a wedding album
  • A memory book for a child to stick in their first theatre tickets and holiday photos
  • With a garden theme to keep a photographic record of your garden

First published in Popular Patchwork Volume 14 Number 6 - June 2006