I have been wanting to do this for a while, and even had all these pictures taken back in March of this year!  For any of you who would like to know how I’ve made my reversible Bible covers, here’s a tutorial 😀

You don’t have to make them reversible, so I’ll note which steps you can skip if you’d like it to just be a regular Bible cover.  I love having things that you can get two different looks in one, so that’s why I went for the reversible 😀

What you’ll need for a reversible Bible cover:

2/3  yard main fabric

1 1/4  yard contrast (if you want it all to be the same color, then just combine these two amounts)

2-2 1/2 yards wide lace

matching thread

two 15 inch lengths of matching ribbon for bookmark

Regular Bible cover:

3/4 yard main fabric

2/3 yard contrasting fabric

If you’d prefer lace over a ruffle, you can subract a 1/3 of the yard of contrasting fabric. You’ll need the same amount of lace as for a reversible cover

matching thread

two�15 inch�lengths of matching ribbon for bookmark

Measurements:

The measurements of the Bible cover itself are:

10 1/2″ long (this is from seam to seam, it doesn’t include the ruffle)

17 3/4 wide (when open, from seam to seam)

The Bible I have is 9 1/2″ long x 7″ wide x 2″ thick.� It also pretty comfortably fits my sisters’ Bibles that are 9″ long x 5� 3/4″ wide x 1 1/2″ thick.

Directions:

 Cut out the material as directed below.� If you are having trouble seeing the pattern, click here to print it off.

Cutting directions for a non-reversible Bible cover:

Back and Back Lining: cut 2 of main material

Front Pocket: cut 2 of main material

Inside Pockets: cut 4 of contrasting material

Handles: cut two of main material

Pencil pocket: cut one of contrasting material

Ruffle: same as for reversible, unless you’re doing lace, then just skip this.

Please note that the�directions for cutting certain ones out of the ‘main’ or ‘contrast’ are only suggestions.  You can mix it up however you like 🙂  You may have noticed that I didn’t make the ruffle contrasting in my Bible cover in the top picture.  Just be sure to adjust how much of each material you get!

 

Step 1: Prepare your front pocket

Take your two pocket pieces and put them right sides together. Stitch a 3/8 inch seam along both long sides.  Turn and press.

:the front pocket - sewing 3/8" on each side:
here the pocket is turned and pressed. This Bible cover gets a doily 🙂

 

I did a slight variation here on the one below and only stitched along the inside on the left seam, and then after I pressed it, I used a decorative stitch on the right side. You could also put a narrow lace on this side 🙂

Fold your back piece in half to find the midpoint.  Line up your front pocket with the midpoint and topstitch it down.  I don’t have this pictured, but baste across the top and bottom of the front pocket to keep it in place.

Step 2: Make your ruffle

Take your three ruffle pieces and sew them together with a 1/2 inch seam, so that you now have one straight and long ruffle piece.  Press the seams open.  Fold the ruffle in half and press it with a hot iron.  Then take the edges and press them inside about 1/2 inch (as shown below)  so that the raw edges are now inside.  You can stitch across the ends if you’d like, to keep it from fraying whenever you wash it, however, if they are the selvege edges, you don’t have to worry about stitching across it.

Stitch all along the raw edge of the ruffle with a long stitch (4.0 or longer).  Do one row close to the edge (with the edge of the material running alongside the edge of the presser foot), and then another row about 1/2 inch parallel to your previous row.  Leave long tails…at least 6 inches long.  Pull up the gathers until it fits around the back and pin it down.  I like to put my pins in vertically so that I can just stitch right over them 😀

 

To help make sure your ruffles are evenly spaced, find the middle seam on the ruffle and line it up with the midpoint on the top. Then overlap your ruffle ends at the midpoint on the bottom. Arrange and spread the ruffle and pin it down.  Baste down the ruffle, being careful not to catch the tops of the ruffles on the corners where it is more likely to flop down in the way and catch 🙂

{Showing where the ruffle overlaps at the bottom midpoint.}

If you are doing lace, you pin and baste it on much the same way.  Pin the right side of the lace down to the right side of the fabric. Just make sure that you fold the ends of the lace so that the raw edges won’t show.  I often “hem” the edge of the lace to keep it from fraying when it gets washed.

Step 3: Handles

Fold your handles right sides together and sew along the long raw edge with a 3/8 seam.  Turn and press. Top stitch along both raw edges.

 

Baste your handles to the short sides of the back, 2 1/4 inches from the top and bottom as shown.

 

If you are doing a reversible Bible cover, repeat this for the other side.  Only I don’t recommend doing a ruffle on both sides.  I usually do lace on one side and a ruffle on the other to keep it from getting too bulky.

Step 4: Making the Pencil Pocket and�Inside Pockets

Fold the pencil pocket in half on the fold line, and press. Take one of your Inside Pocket pieces and baste the pencil pocket on the left side of your inside pocket to hold it in place for the next step.

Now you can decide how many pencil pockets you’d like 😀 I usually do two, and then leave a little pocket for small papers or an eraser.  What I usually do is use a pencil to guide where to sew.  I have allowed extra material on this piece, so that you have plenty to work with.  You will actually be trimming some off because it is too long 😀

Okay, now you can pay attention to the other stitching in the picture!  Remember that you are going to have approximately 1/2 seam allowance on that left side, so keep that in mind if you are making a pencil pocket!  You can now trim the extra fabric on the pencil pocket, baste it down to the inside pocket, and finish the edge either with a fancy stitch, like is shown here, or you can just do a rolled hem. I’ve done it both ways before 🙂

Do this for both your main and contrasting materials, just make sure that your pencil pocket is on the left Inside Pocket, unless you like having your pencils in the back of your Bible 😀

Now you can baste the pockets together.  Do a pencil pocket side and a non-pencil-pocket side together, and baste along the three edges as shown.

If you are doing a non-reversible Bible cover:

Do the inside and pencil pockets the same way, only do one pencil pocket.

Step 5: Putting it together!

Lay out your Bible cover Back, with the front pocket on the left.  Pin down the corners where there is extra ruffle so that both the corners and the pins don’t get caught in the 1/2 seam allowance you are going to take (see how the lace is done a couple of pictures farther down in the post.)

Now pin the inside pockets as shown.  The purple pencil pocket should be facing the purple material, on the right.  The pink pencil pocket should be facing you, on the left.  Baste around the edges of the pockets.

Baste in your ribbons at the top midpoint of the Bible cover.

Now, remember the contrasting side you did with the lace?

Pin down the corners on your lace, so that both the extra lace in the corners, AND the pins don’t catch in the 1/2 seam allowance you are going to take on the edges 😀

Pin the ribbons up out of the way…

Now�pin the purple Back to the pink Back, right sides together, making sure that the both are right side up! When you are looking at it like in the picture below, your pink front pocket will be on the right, and your purple front pocket will be on the left.  Pin it well.  Sew with a 1/2 inch seam allowance all the way around, except for a 5 to 6 inch space on the bottom side.  Because the layers are so thick, I sew with a�slightly longer stitch, like about 3.0 instead of the regular 2.5.

I also like to sew in between my gathering stitches, because it makes a nicer looking ruffle.  You have to pull out the stitches that are showing later, so you may or may not want to do this!

 

If  you are doing a non-reversible cover:

Just put your Back and Back Lining together the same way. Lay out your Back with the pockets and everything on it, and pin the Back Lining to the top.

Turn the Bible cover right side out to make sure you didn’t catch in the ruffles or lace, and just go all the way around to double check that you’ve caught everything else in.  If you haven’t, go back and take a slightly deeper seam.  I also like to check the seam on the inside of the Bible cover, because sometimes it looks like you caught it in on the outside, when really you just barely caught it on the inside.  Those places make weak spots, so go over those, too!

Turn it back wrong side out, and clip the corners to reduce the bulk.  You can also trim the seams a little, but I don’t recommend getting much closer to the seam than 1/2 inch or else it will weaken the seams. Now turn it right side out again.

Step 6: Finishing

Now your Bible cover will look something like this:

If there are any gathering stitches showing, use a seam ripper to pick or pull them out.  Sometimes when you break the thread underneath, you can pull part of the thread out on top more easily(and vice versa) without having to sit and pick out every single stitch.

 

I don’t know if you can see what I did here, but I tried to take in a 1/2 seam allowance on the lace side and on the ruffle side  so that later when I stitch it closed, it matches up with the rest of the Bible cover and doesn’t dip down…

Then I hand-stitched it closed, just using a small ‘back and forth’ stitch, so that the stitches would be pretty hidden. They’ll be hidden pretty well anyways, since the lace and ruffles are so full!

Ta-da!  You did it! Now you have your very own reversible Bible cover 😀

{the inside pockets are good for tucking letters or bulletins into}

{the pink side}

If something doesn’t make sense or if you’re having trouble with a certain part, feel free to comment and ask questions!  It would be very easy for me to overlook something while making this tutorial, so any corrections or clarifications that should be added are welcome 😀

And one more thing…if you make one, please do post a picture and tell me about it so I can see it, too! 😀

Happy Sewing!

 

 

 

You are free to make these Bible covers to sell in homemade shops, such as Etsy, but please do not take or sell this pattern as your own. Thanks!

 

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27 thoughts on “Bible Cover Tutorial

  • October 30, 2010 at 3:47 pm
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    I have been wanting to make a Bible cover like that one! Thanks, so much! I am definitely going to try this:)

    Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 4:24 pm
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    wow!! I’ve been wanting a pattern for a Bible cover, and a reversible one is even better!! this would make a great gift for someone 🙂 or treat yourself 🙂

    I’ll have to try this sometime!! and If I get something wrong, I might just have to hire my humble maid Jessica 🙂 ha ha 🙂

    Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 4:30 pm
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    Jessica,

    That is beautiful! Wonderful tutorial! You are gifted!

    Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 4:41 pm
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    What a lovely Bible cover! How blessed you girls are that you learned to sew and are so talented at it! I have a brand new sewing machine in a box but no one to teach me! 🙁 I wish I lived closer! You could come over for tea and give me sewing lessons! What a grand time we’d have!

    P.S. I voted for you all in a million categories today for the awards! 🙂 HUGS!

    Reply
    • October 30, 2010 at 7:24 pm
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      Oh, thank you Jaime Lynn for voting for us 😀

      That would be fun to have tea and sew! Are you sure you don’t want to come live in Indiana?! hee, hee! I’m just teasing…I wouldn’t want to be far away from my family I know! 😀

      Jessica

      Reply
      • October 31, 2010 at 9:31 am
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        HA HA HA! If I ever move to Indiana – you’ll be the first person I contact for sure!!! 🙂

        Reply
      • November 2, 2010 at 8:41 am
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        canI vote for you all still? I went on the site and it said that the polls were closed. Help Help !! 🙂

        Reply
        • November 2, 2010 at 8:22 pm
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          Voting hasn’t started yet 🙂 It’s just the nominating that is closed. Voting starts November 6th. 🙂

          Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 5:10 pm
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    Thank you, Jessica. Can’t wait to show it A!!!

    Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 5:24 pm
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    Quick question….what size Bible did you make the cover for??? 🙂
    Give my love to the family!

    Reply
    • October 30, 2010 at 7:22 pm
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      Oops! I forgot to mention anything about size on there! I just updated it, so the answer to your question is close to the top under “Measurements” 😀 Thanks for bringing that up!

      Jessica

      Reply
  • October 30, 2010 at 6:11 pm
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    Oh dear… I still have to pattern for this and I haven’t even made one!!!! This tutorial is very helpful though, so maybe I’ll get around to it soon. (I mean it)

    Reply
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  • October 31, 2010 at 8:46 am
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    Dear sisters,
    I have been reading your blog for some time now and I realy enjoy all your story’s and pictures! This is a lovely tutorial and I am thinking of making one, not only for my bible, but maybe also for my diary and my housekeeping journal. Thank you for sharing!
    Greetings from the Netherlands, Mama lieveheersbeestje.

    Reply
  • November 4, 2010 at 6:02 pm
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    What a beautiful tutorial, ladies! I love the sweetness of it! These would make such fun gifts for friends! Thank you for sharing your gift of sewing with us!

    Joyfully in Jesus,
    Elizabeth

    Reply
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  • November 6, 2010 at 3:56 pm
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    Thank you for sharing this pattern! 🙂
    God bless,
    Rachel*

    Reply
  • November 28, 2010 at 12:50 pm
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    Looks great…I was inspired to cover my own Bible, but I made it more simple and did not make it reversible. Thanks for the great tutorial! 🙂

    Reply
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  • August 26, 2011 at 9:59 pm
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    I tried this Bible cover myself and worked out very well! I really love it!! It has lots of pockets (which I need), fits my Bible well (always a bonus 😉 ), and I really like the material I used. Thanks so much! It was wonderful. 🙂 I did post a few pictures on my blog so if you’d like to see them you can.

    God bless,
    Emily Sue

    Reply
  • February 10, 2012 at 3:28 pm
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    they are so pretty! I like the ruffles on them!

    Love ~*Chantelle*~

    Reply
  • February 5, 2015 at 1:49 pm
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    Hi Jessica,
    Your Bible cover is really nice! I come from a family of 6 kids and I also really like sewing! = )
    I’m currently working on a skirt, and I LOVE your harp playing!!

    God bless you!
    Danielle

    – Mathew 6:33

    Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

    Reply
    • February 5, 2015 at 4:49 pm
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      Hey Danielle! It was nice to hear from you and thank you for your kind comments! Good luck on your sewing 🙂 🙂
      ♥Jessica

      Reply
  • February 25, 2015 at 8:47 pm
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    Hi Jessica, Hey how much would you charge to make me a new cover like this for my new Bible 🙂 ?

    Reply
    • February 26, 2015 at 2:37 pm
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      Hi Renee!
      Would the dimensions of this Bible cover pattern fit it? 🙂 And would you want it reversible or just one-sided? An approximate price for a reversible one would be about $70-$80 🙂 You can email me :here: if you want 🙂 🙂
      ♥Jessica

      Reply

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