Discussion Forums - Crafting

Topic: Fabric book cover

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ROB L. (mrrob) - ,
Subject: Fabric book cover
Date Posted: 6/21/2009 12:38 AM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2009
Posts: 7
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I have a nice book cover I use for my paperbacks that I'd like to re-create for my grandkids. It has a ribbon attached for use as a page marker and a clear 1" strip of clear vinyl with snaps that is used to keep the book open when reading or to keep it closed. It also has some type of metal (i think) strip inside that gives the cover it's spring when opening it & keeps it open. The trouble is, I can't seem to find out what the material is without taking the book cover apart. Rather than make them myself, I could just order some, but with 9 grandkids old enough to read, it can get quite expensive. So if I can find out what the "spring" material is, I think I can save quite a bit of money by making them myself. Plus, I'll be able to pick out the fabric myself! If anyone out there can enlighten me, I'd appreciate it. Thanks, Rob
Date Posted: 6/24/2009 11:47 PM ET
Member Since: 6/30/2007
Posts: 2,470
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You have a BookMate, I think.  I've gone through my share of these over the last few years and threw them away when they disintegrated.  That is, until I realized I could reinforce the clear plastic vinyl before I started using it.  Now the plastic on the inside has worn through and it's rubbing the spine of my book where the metal bends and I need to put a small piece of plastic in between (I used one of those jar opener rubber grip things).   I don't close mine anymore, just leave the book open to the last page I've read and it seems to keep the wear and tear to a minimum.

But, I'm pretty sure the material inside that allows you to flatten and bend the spine is similar to those old 'wrist slapper' bracelets the kids were playing with a number of years back.  They were aluminum, I think.  There was some controversy about them, since you could cut yourself on the edges.  They were straight, like a ruler, until you slapped them against your wrist and then they'd curl up around your arm.  I thought about fixing/making these bookcovers myself too, but if that material is metal as you suspect and you can find it, then you'll need to insulate it from the fabric, so it doesn't wear down the edges where it rubs.  You can probably use a couple pieces of heavy cardboard for the two sides and fix the metal band at the center and then cover the whole thing with some type of thin foam/batting and then cover that with the fabric you've chosen.

Try doing a google search and you should find sources for the bands.  I did a quick look and found several.  Good Luck!

ROB L. (mrrob) - ,
Date Posted: 6/25/2009 12:58 PM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2009
Posts: 7
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Thank you Linda R. I appreciate your reply. My wife has had one for probably over 12 years and it's still holding up. (However, I don't think she uses it as often as you or I do!) It makes sense that the "spring" inside would wear on the fabric over time. I haven't thought of that since I haven't had my book cover for long. Thanks for the suggestion that it may be the same as those "wrist slappers". I've done a lot of googling for the material, but haven't even thought of those "slappers". So I'll do just that - google for the "wrist slapper" and see what comes up. Thanks again, and also for the suggestions on how to keep the metal from fraying the fabric! Rob
ROB L. (mrrob) - ,
Subject: Fabric book cover
Date Posted: 7/13/2009 1:03 AM ET
Member Since: 5/17/2009
Posts: 7
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I decided to purchase one of the "BookMates" that Linda R mentioned in her reply, and are offered by the Club. I found out a few things: 1. They are made of vinyl vs fabric like the ones my wife and I have. 2. Even though they have a patent on them (they're stamped "BOOKMATE PATENTED") I think it must be the fact that they are vinyl that makes them patented, as there are at least 2 sources on the web that make the same thing out of fabric. 3. The book mark is just another piece of vinyl - not a nice fabric ribbon. And 4. For the price (I paid $12.50 for the Onyx pattern) they just don't seem to be of very nice quality. So, I guess I've got my "sample" book cover to take apart to see what the "spring" is that makes it spring open!! I may wait 'til it wears thru the plastic first tho. Then I've got to find out where I can get more of the "springs" so I can make some nice fabric covers for my grandkids. I suggest if any member is looking into purchasing a Bookmate, to go here http://www.reade-z.com/home.html and check them out. Their book covers are a bit more, but they are much nicer, and last much longer. Thanks, Linda R for your help on this, and I wish all of you good reading! Rob

Last Edited on: 7/13/09 11:11 AM ET - Total times edited: 1