Friday, December 23, 2011

Linen Bookmarks – A Tutorial

Two ways, no less.  The slightly more involved and the pleasingly easy.  This:

Or this:

Because either way you have linen, vintage lace, and vintage buttons.  What’s not to love?


  • linen
  • bits of lace and pretty buttons
  • fusible interfacing  – I used Décor Bond or Craft Bond or something like that.  You could probably go lighter and that would be fine, too.  With hindsight, if I was making more of these up, I’d go for a lighter interfacing – just enough to add a little body and to curtail linen’s inclination to stretch like mad.
  • For the easier version: Steam-a-Seam 2 Lite or other fusible product

Slightly More Involved First

I rooted through my button box and my bits of lace to create a little pile to play with.  You could always use new, of course.  If you want to create a vintage look, you can tea die the lace (buttons, too, for that matter).

1.  Cut your interfacing 2" by 8" – one for each bookmark.

2.  Cut two linen rectangles 2 1/2" by 8 1/2"

3.  Fuse the interfacing onto the back of one of your rectangles, leaving a quarter inch seam allowance on all four sides of the fusible.

4.  Try out a couple bits of lace across the right side of the interfaced rectangle.

5.  Sew the lace down along the top and bottom. 

6.  Add a button to the top.  (oops – forgot to take a picture).

7.  Place the two linen rectangles right sides together and sew along all four edges, leave an opening along the top edge for turning  (the arrows indicate how far in I sewed along the top edge).  Trim the four corners.

7.  Turn inside out.  This can be a bit tricky.  You can push in the top edge and then grap it with forceps.  I used the Dritz Quick Turn tool (because I love my gadgets).

Started.  It’s a little stiff but it’s working.

Still going.

8.  Once it’s all turned right side out, push out the corners, and press, folding in the top edges.

9.  I put the edge foot on my sewing machine and top stitch all around.

10.  And it’s done!  Isn’t that pretty?

The Easy Version

Very pretty, but I’ll grant, the turning inside out business does slow things down.  So if you want to avoid that step, try this instead. 

  • two linen rectangles 2" by 8"
  • one fusible interfacing 2" by 8"
  • one Steam-a-Seam 2 Lite 2" by 8"

1.  Fuse the interfacing and the Steam-a-Seam to the linen pieces.

2.  Once again, sew the lace and button onto the linen piece with the fused interfacing.

3.  Place the two linen rectangles with right sides out and fuse them together.

4.  Stitch 1/4" around all four sides.  If you want, you could stop there.  It would look like this.

5.  I trimmed the edges with my wave blade rotary cutter.  I put the 1/8 inch mark of the ruler on the stitching and trimmed the wee excess.

6.  Easy and still very pretty.

A close-up.

Is that not enough?

Well, no.  A while back a quilt buddy of mine gave me a bag of batik scraps, leftovers from a quilt she had made for a grand-daughter.  For an added bonus, some of those leftovers were from border strips that included piecing.  So I took those border strips and using this tutorial, made these guys.   The only difference is that I fused mine together. 

And I’m not quite done.  Because all of these strike me as fairly feminine and I’ve got a husband, two sons, and a brother-in-law to account for as well.  So, just a handful more – and I have to say, I’m getting a little bookmarked out, so I see  sew easy in my future.


  1. Your bookmarks are lovely and fun. Have a Happy Holiday.

  2. You are very creative and artistic; I might steal you bookmark ideas to make for my friend and I, thanks and greetings from Canada.