Shakespeare and Company Paper Bag E-reader Cover

Season’s Greetings! I hope everyone has had (and is having) a spectacular winter holiday. Two Yule presents I got this year were an e-reader and two antique books my cousin got for me from the Shakespeare and Company book store in Paris. She also gifted me the bag that they came in which, while gorgeous, was really too worn out to be re-used as a bag. So, like all good crafters on vacation, I got it in my head to remake it into something new.

“Shakespeare and Company” shopping bag
Amazon Kindle box
Two Ruby felt squares
Elmer’s Craft Glue
Royal Coat Decoupage Finish
3/4″ Craft brush
Cranberry cotton embroidery floss
1/4″ Elastic
Size 20 tapestry needle

One of the tutorials I found on making an e-reader cover recommended using cardboard (the consistency of a “cereal box or something similar) to create the support panels for the cover, including the base that the e-reader sits on. I just looked around and went “Hey! The e-reader *box* is pretty lightweight cardboard. That’ll work.”

My e-reader measured out to approximately 4.5″ x 6.5″. Adding half an inch to each side for support, I cut out two 5″ x 7″ cardboard panels and folded the bag down to accommodate their size, allowing an inch of space between the two panels for the cover to fold over. Once finished, I side the felt and one of the felt squares (cut down to 7″ x 11″) inside the bag. I then used the craft brush to paint a layer of decoupage finish on both sides of the bag.

After the sealer on both sides of the bag was dry, I used the tapestry needle and embroidery floss to stitch up the open sides.

While I waited for both sides of the bag to dry, I drew four lines 1″ inside each corner of the second cardboard panel with my pencil and used the tapestry needle to poke two holes in each corner, approximately one centimeter in from the edge of the cardboard. I then used the stylus to enlarge the holes so I could pull the elastic through with the pliers.

Lucky me, I had already brought felt and embroidery floss with me on the trip, but I did end up having to swing by Michael’s for the elastic and buttons. The felt inside the paper was supposed to add a bit of padding and give the e-reader a little more protection while the other piece was going to cushion the base the reader sits on. I used the cardboard panel to cut a slightly larger piece of felt. Once finished, I held the felt over the cardboard and used the stylus to punch holes in the felt large enough to pull the elastic through. I then used the tapestry needle to thread the elastic and, using the pliers, was able to pull it through all four corners of the felt and cardboard, forming four loops to secure the e-reader.

I’m horrible at knots and I didn’t relish the idea of attempting to knot the elastic, create an ugly bump under the base of the e-reader and then create a huge problem when the knot inevitable came undone. So rather than try to tie it, I used the embroidery floss to stitch the remaining ends of elastic together.

I liked the look of a good button and loop clasp and I picked this ornate base metal button both because its design complimented the artwork on the bag and because it was light enough to secure to the top flap of the cover through the paper, cardboard and felt.

Using the needle and stylus, I then created a hole for the elastic loop to come through on the bottom flap, measuring a centimeter inside both the paper cover and cardboard base.

Folding in the excess felt lengthwise, I sewed two loose stitches in each corner and then used Scotch tape to secure the loose felt folded in to the cardboard. Once finished, I used the pliers and needle to pull a separate piece of elastic through the paper cover and secured it to the cardboard panel by sewing the loose ends to the cardboard under the felt.

With both sides and the loop and button clasp finished, the only thing left to do was to secure the cardboard panel to the paper cover, which I did using Elmer’s Glue.

This project was two and a half days in the making — not my longest project in terms of time, but definitely the most complicated in terms of individual steps and uses of different media. What do you think?

~ by blackmoodcraft on December 30, 2011.

3 Responses to “Shakespeare and Company Paper Bag E-reader Cover”

  1. This is really inventive and creative! I like it!

  2. thank you!

  3. […] at the art academy. For the first few days I was working with his class, he watched me reading what looked like a paper bag in between breaks. On the third day, he walked over and realized it was an e-reader […]

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