Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

This is a great project for using up scraps of interesting papers, fabrics, old beads, buttons, ribbons, and other tidbits. It is simple to do and you can make several of them in a short amount of itme as small gifts or giveaways.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Materials to create collage and stitched book marks

  • Cutting matt
  • Rotary cutter with decorative blades
  • Xacto knife
  • Glue stick
  • Fusible web
  • Iron, matt
  • Sewing machine, straight and zigzag and embroidery feet
  • Scissors
  • Decorative threads
  • Fixative or polyurethane spray (optional)
  • Decorative papers, fabric scraps, old buttons, beads, wires, etc.
  • Sewing machine
  • Iron

Version 1

Step 1

Gather up your paper scraps and small piece of fabrics and other fun stuff. I have some old water color papers, postcards, decorative papers, magazines or advertising, anything that is of interest to you.

Step 2

Do the same with your fabrics—I have scraps from various projects, some have stitching on them already, others are samples from fabric suppliers, anything can work! Pieces that are already cut up are sometimes even more interesting to use in your design.

Step 3

Lay out your samples and see what appeals to you to work with. If you choose a background paper it should be relatively sturdy. If you choose a background fabric it should be fused to another piece of fabric to make it sturdier.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 4

On a cutting mat, cut a strip three inches by ten inches for your background. I use a scallop or a pinking blade on my rotary cutter to give the edge more interest.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks - cutting

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks - cuttingStep 5

Next choose a strip of another paper or fabric to be used in the center of your bookmark; it can be one piece of paper or a collage of smaller pieces—whatever YOU want.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 6

Center this on your background and tape lightly at one end to hold in place.

Step 7

Try out stitch widths and thread colors and styles on scraps of paper. I used my Bernina 750 zigzag stitch and variegated thread for the sample shown. I tried various stitch widths and lengths until I found the one that I liked best.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 8

Start stitching at a corner and go along the whole length of your center piece—when you get to the end carefully place you needle in the down position right at the corner so you can make a neat turn. Continue all the way around to your inner rectangle. Carefully end your stitching

Collaged and Stitched BookmarksBERNINA Blog 11

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks - stitching

Step 9

You could be done at this point or you can add some small additional decorations. I laid out a bunch of possibilities next to my bookmark (to see whether buttons, beads, old necklace bits or other things might look good on the bookmark.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks - decoration

Step 10

After I chose my items, I chose a decorative stitch to hold the items in place near the top of the bookmark center panel.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 11

Sign your name if you like to the back with a marker, and admire your finished project

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks - finished bookmark

Step 12

You may want to spray with a fixative or polyurethane spray to add protection.

Version 2 of the Collage and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 1

In this version I had a photo that I had printed on to cloth with a backing paper. I decided to cut the photo up into multiple bookmarks. I used my rotary cutter with scallop blade.

Step 2

I could make four bookmarks out of the 8.5 x 11 piece of paper.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks from cut postcards

Step 3

I used my BERNINA 350 PE zigzag stitch again to create a wavy undulating pattern on the fabric that compliments the water reflection lines. I varied the stitch width as I sewed so the pattern would get wider and narrower.

Collaged and Stitched Bookmarks

Step 4

I completed the stitching and trimming.

Step 5

Other possibilities include, stitching this to a complimentary background, fusing another fabric to the backside, adding more decorative elements.

I hope this will give you some ideas to begin making some creative use of your scraps and having a collection of little gifts available.

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