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How to Make a Binder Cover

Today I'm going to show you how to make a binder or portfolio cover.

I am using these beautiful PRISM fabrics from Island Batik.

A few of my quilty friends are making projects from these fabrics. If you would like to see them, hop on to their blogs:

A binder cover was the ideal project, as it is very versatile. Not only does it work for a binder, but also used to store or transport "orphan" quilt blocks or partly pieces blocks to retreats.


  1. Seam allowance for piecing the fabric is 1/4"

  2. Seam allowance for everything else is 3/8"

  3. Stitch length is the default 2.5 mm

You will need*:

  1. Fabric scraps at least 14" long. The width of each scrap needs to be at least 1" to allow for the seam allowance (fabric A).

  2. Fabric for lining: (2) pieces measuring 12.5" x 12.5" square (fabric B)

  3. Fabric for the back cover: (2) pieces measuring 12.5" x 6.5" each (fabric C)

  4. Fabric for binding: (2) pieces measuring 12.5" x 3" (fabric D)

  5. Peltex ultra firm stabilizer : (1) piece measuring 11.5" x 24"

  6. Clear vinyl - (2) pieces, measuring 12.5" x 5.5" each.

  7. Sewing supplies: sewing machine, matching all-purpose thread, universal sewing machine needles, rotary cutter, self-healing cutting mat, iron, wool pressing mat, quilting ruler, sewing clips, and pins.

Here's how I did it:

  • I used the scraps of fabric A to sew the strips into (4) blocks measuring approximately 10" x 10" square.

  • Using a square 6.5" x 6.5" ruler, placing it in a random position on top of the 4 blocks from step 1, cut all around to obtain a square measuring 6.5" x 6.5" of random strips. Repeat to make (4) blocks.

  • Sew together the (4) pieced strip blocks into a larger block that measures 12.5" x 12.5" square. This will be the front cover of your binder cover.

  • Sew together the (2) back cover fabric C pieces to make a block measuring 12.5" x 12.5" square.

  • Sew the completed front cover block to the back cover block using 1/4" seam allowance to create the outer piece of the binder cover, measuring 12.5" x 24.5".

  • Sew together the (2) lining fabrics B, leaving a 4" gap in the middle (or big enough for your hand to fit through). Reinforce the beginning and end of the stitches. You will use this gap to insert the piece of Peltex.

  • Fold the sides of the binding fabric D towards the middle lengthwise, and fold in half again. Iron the folds.

  • Sew the folded binding fabrics D to each piece of vinyl on one of the long edges. I sewed multiple stitch lines because I liked the look.

  • Place the vinyl pieces on each short side of the lining piece, aligning the raw long edge of the vinyl pieces to the short edges of the lining fabric. Baste using an 1/8" seam allowance and 5 mm stitch lenght.

  • Place the outer piece of the binder cover on top of the linig piece, wrong sides together. Sew them together all the way around the edges with a 1/4" seam allowance and 2.5 mm stitch length.

  • Clip the corners of the stitched piece, ensuring you are not cutting the stitches.

  • Turn the fabric cover inside out through the gap you left in step 6. Using your iron and pressing mat, iron the binder cover flat, avoiding the areas that have vinyl so that it doesn't melt. You can use a turning tool to poke out the corners and make them look sharp.

  • Roll up the piece of Peltex and insert it in the gap of the binder cover. Using your hand, tuck in the corners of the Peltex into the corners of the binder cover. Press everything together, but do not touch your iron to the vinyl, as it will melt, and fold the seam allowance inside the opening. It will take some manipulation to get it inside and flat, but it will iron out after it is fully inserted.

  • Sew a straight line from the top of the binder cover to the bottom, down the middle, and on top of the gap you left, ensuring this will close the gap.

  • If you wish to, you can topstitch all around the binder cover. Ensure your binder fits prior to top stitching, because if your topstitch seam allowance is too wide, the binder will not fit.

Your binder cover is now done!



Note: the links to the supplies are affiliate links, which means I make a small commission if you purchase using my link, at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting my small business :)

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Thanks so much for sharing the steps on how you did this


Beautiful cover.

Replying to

Thank you, I had a lot of fun making it!

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