Fabric Covered School Folders and Craft Lightning Blog Hop

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It's time for another Craft Lightning blog hop, this one all about back to school!  All crafts in a Craft Lightning blog hop have to take fewer than 15 minutes to make, so even though you'll find lots of clever ideas, you know you won't have to invest a lot of time or effort.

You know those paper folders that you need so many of for school?  One for each subject?  I wanted to find an easy way to customize them, maybe even make them a little more durable.  So for my contribution to the Back to School edition of Craft Lightning, I decided to figure out how to cover those inexpensive, lightweight paper folders with fabric.

I started with those ubiquitous paper folders that cost less than 50 cents each.  I also decided to experiment with covering a composition notebook that cost me 75 cents, too.  Get the really cheap ones, the ones without the glossy, plastic coating on the folders.  Those more expensive ones might work, but they might not.  I know that the super inexpensive folders with the matte finish do work.

I remembered my success making fabric scrapbook paper before, and decided to play with that technique.

Materials and Tools for Making Fabric Covered School Folders:

Cut a piece of the fusible webbing slightly larger than the open folder.  Iron the fusible webbing to the wrong side of the fabric.  (FYI:  a half yard of fabric is enough to cover two folders.)

Peel the paper backing off of the fabric, and arrange the paper folder (or composition book) on top.

Use the iron to iron the fused fabric to the paper folder.  

Use sharp fabric scissors to notch out the center of fabric, right below where the papers get fastened, so that the fabric won't interfere with the mechanics of the folder when finished.

Fold the fabric edges on the inside of the folder or composition book.  You can either iron the edges in place, or use a hot glue gun to secure the inside hem.  I tried both methods, and both worked beautifully.  It's just a matter of which you prefer, really.  I suspect that, in the long run, the glue gunned folders will be slightly more durable, but we'll have to see if my hypothesis is correct in the upcoming months.

The 1st grader and the 6th grader both love their new folders!  It almost makes the fact that we go back to school at the end of July seem exciting.  Almost.  I don't think I'll ever get used to this modified year-round school schedule and short summer vacations.

Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido

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