Thursday, March 17, 2011

Kindle sleeve TUTORIAL

Want to make a little something to keep your Kindle safe and cozy?
This sleeve is very easy to make and provides a great little cozy for your Kindle. You could also easily adapt it to fit a number of other devices, including your laptop, iPod, or iPad. Let's get started.
* Cut two (2) 6.5" x 9" pieces from each of your exterior fabric, interior fabric, and lining. (I used cotton flannel for my lining, but you could also use batting. Alternatively, you could forgo the lining and make your interior fabric a fleece or something soft instead. Also, if you have a directional fabric, bear in mind that 9" is the vertical measurement.)
* Cut one (1) 4" x 3.25" piece from each of your exterior fabric, interior fabric, and lining. (3.25" is the vertical measurement here.)
* coordinating thread
* sew-in Velcro, cut to your preferred size (I used about 1.5".)
* Steam-a-Seam 2

UPDATE: The measurements above are for a sleeve that fits a Kindle 3 (also known as a Kindle Keyboard). To adjust the sizing to fit other devices or other Kindle models, just measure your device and add 1.5" to the length and width measurements for the lining, interior fabric, and exterior fabric. You may also want to adjust the size of your flap depending on the size of your device.
Pin together your two pieces of 6.5" x 9" exterior fabric right sides together in one sandwich. Pin both sides and the bottom.
Then, pin another sandwich in this order: one piece of 6.5" x 9" lining, both pieces of 6.5" x 9" interior fabric right sides together, then the second piece of 6.5" x 9" lining. Pin both sides, but note that you're going to leave an opening in the bottom for turning later. I mark this with two vertical pins (see picture) to remind myself to stop.
Using a .5" seam allowance, sew each sandwich together (first the exterior sandwich, then the lining sandwich, so you have two sandwiches). Backstitch at both ends.
Remember to leave a gap in the bottom of your lining sandwich. Be sure to backstitch at both ends, but there's no need to cut your thread. Just lift your foot, pull the thread to where you want to start again on the other side of the gap, and go.
Press. (See my gap in the lining?)
Trim your seam allowances and clip your corners. I find using pinking shears helps to reduce the bulk in the assembled sleeve.
Turn the exterior sandwich right side out and press again. Use a chopstick or other tool of your choice to push out the corners. Leave the lining sandwich as is.
Now let's work on the strap. I chose to make mine have rounded corners, but you could leave it squared off if you prefer. I just eyeballed trimming my edges to round them off, but you could also use a small cup or circle template to trace a curve. I placed the exterior, lining, and interior pieces together and cut them all at once to ensure they were the same.
Now we're going to sew our Velcro to the strap. We only want to sew it to the interior and lining pieces so that you don't see the stitching on the outside. Pin your lining and interior pieces together along the sides and top to secure the sandwich.
Note: You could use a piece of sticky Velcro, but I prefer sew-in. It just seems sturdier to me. Also, I always use the "soft" side of the Velcro on this step, because it's the piece that the Kindle could rub against when it's removed from the sleeve.

So, cut a piece of Steam-a-Seam to the same length as your Velcro.
Stick the Steam-a-Seam to your Velcro and pull off the paper on the other side.
Position the Velcro in the middle of the strap and about .625" from the top. Cover the Velcro with a pressing cloth and press with your iron to secure it to the strap.
Sew in the Velcro, staying as close to the edges as you can. Don't forget to backstitch.
Remove your pins and add your exterior piece to your sandwich. Your interior and exterior pieces should be rights sides together (so the Velcro is between them). Pin along the top and sides.
Using a .25" seam allowance (note the smaller seam allowance), stitch along the top and sides, backstitching at both ends. Press and trim your seam allowances. Trim as much as you can along the curves, but make sure you don't trim into your seam allowance.
Turn inside out and press. Topstitch along the top and sides. Press.
We're almost there. Let's assemble the bag. Place the exterior bag inside the interior bag, right sides together. So your exterior bag should be facing out, and your interior bag should be facing in.
On one side, place your strap between the two bags, aligning its bottom with the top of the bags (the strap should be inside your new sandwich). Center it along the side of the bag. Make sure you place it so that the matching fabrics are touching (i.e., the exterior fabric on the bag is touching the exterior fabric on the strap.) Pin securely all the way around, aligning your side seams.
Using a .5 seam allowance, stitch all around the top to attach the bags. Note: If your sewing machine is like mine, the opening of the bag will be too small for the bag to fit around your machine arm. Just go slowly, holding as much of the fabric flat as you can and making sure you keep any extra fabric away from the needle.

Press before turning. Then pull the exterior bag through the hole in the bottom of the lining.
Ta da! Press both sides flat.
On the lining, push the extra fabric from your hole inside the lining and press. Handstitch or edgestitch the hole closed. Push the lining inside the exterior bag. Use a chopstick or other tool of your choice to push out the corners.
Press the bag again to make sure the layers are aligned properly, then topstitch around the top opening.
Pretty, huh? Just one more step...
We need to attach the other piece of Velcro. Place the second piece of Velcro on top of the first piece, then cut another piece of Steam-a-Seam and attach it to the back.
Insert your Kindle into the sleeve and close the strap. (You want to insert the Kindle to make sure your strap is in the right location for when the bag is in use. If you leave the bag empty, your Velcro's going to be too high.) Hold down the unattached piece of Velcro where it lands and gently pull the strap back open.

REMOVE YOUR KINDLE (we're about to get the iron out), carefully holding the Velcro in place. Using a pressing cloth, iron the Velcro so it attaches to the fabric, then sew it into place.
And you're finished! Take a look at your fancy new Kindle sleeve and envision all the compliments you'll soon be receiving.
I hope you enjoy the tutorial. Do let me know if you have any questions or problems with any of the steps. Good luck!


  1. Thanks for the great tutorial... just finished my case. Great instructions & pictures. Thanks!

  2. Awesome! I'm so glad you enjoyed it. Have fun with the case.

  3. What kind of Kindle did you make this for? I want to make one for my Playbook, so I want to adjust the dimensions. :)

  4. What kind of Kindle did you make this for?

  5. It's for a Kindle 3. To adjust the sizing, just measure your device and add 1.5" to each measurement. Hope that helps. Good luck!

  6. Woo hoo! I made one of these last night and LOVE how it turned out :)


  7. Thanks for the tutorial! I made this sleeve for my daughter's Kindle. She requested a pocket and here's how it turned out...

    Thanks again,

  8. Thank you so much for this tutorial I thought it was so complicated to make a kindle cover now I see it is not such a difficult task.

  9. Thanks so much for this great tutorial! I'm very much a newbie seamstress (I've only done some simple sewing on my kids' Halloween costumes -- that and seventh grade HomeEc) but thanks to your clear instructions I was able to follow along without any problems. My case turned out great! Thank-you!

  10. Hi Jessica, Thanks for this wonderful tutorial. Love how you included lots of photos and your instructions are detailed yet easy to understand. It was extremely helpful in making my case. Thanks for taking the time to post this info! Here's a link to my completed case:

  11. Quick question. One of the first steps says "sew both sandwiches together." You mean to sew the 2 separate sandwiches into one sandwich? Did you just sew the bottom edges together (leaving the gap in the middle?) Or did you sew all of the edges together?

    1. Ashley,
      Sorry for the confusion. I've clarified the wording to say "sew each sandwich together." You're sewing two separate sandwiches: the lining sandwich and the exterior sandwich. I just like to pin both sandwiches and then sew both sandwiches, instead of pin, sew, pin, sew. You'll see how they're combined later in the tutorial. Hope that helps, and let me know if you have any other questions!

  12. Thank you for this tutorial I have made one and going to make another one for my granddaughter and my husband. This is so easy to make.

    1. I'm so glad you liked it! Good luck with your next one!

  13. This idea is amazing! But do you think it will come out well if I use denim as the exterior fabric? Thanks in advance!

    1. Thank you! I think you could probably use denim, but you'll end up with some very thick seam allowances. I would definitely suggest using a thinner lining (like flannel instead of batting) or leaving it out altogether. Good luck!

  14. Thanks for this! It was really easy, I only messed up once ;) (My strap was on the wrong side, should've read your instruction better. But I fixed it and it looks amazing!).

    I even made a dutch tutorial with some adjusments. :)


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