I used today’s structure to create a version of the Zhen Xian Bao/Chinese Thread book. I made it to carry my knitting tools and patterns to England this past fall, and it worked very well.
The instructions for folding a version that can be used as a book cover have been assembled using some images from earlier posts. I hope the changing colour of the model is not too confusing!
You will need a sheet of paper twice the width of your book plus the spine width plus the two points and a little ease so that the cover closes properly. You can use the diagram below as a guide to calculating your paper size. If you wish to print out a copy of the diagram for reference, the pdf is here.
The paper is twice the height of the book block —shown in blue-grey in the diagram— plus a little for overhang at head and foot. The width of the end sections to the left and right of the book block is the same as the height of the sections above and below the book block.
Cut your paper to the required size. If you don’t mind a fold line down the middle of the outside of your model, fold your paper in half with the fold running the long way. If you don’t want a fold showing, draw a faint pencil line down the middle of the length of your paper. You can always erase the pencil mark later, but it won’t show once the book is inserted into the cover. Now fold the two long sides in to the middle.
Open your paper flat again, then fold the upper right corner in to the middle.
Repeat with the other three corners.
Open flat again, then fold the top half down.
There is a diagonal fold line a little way in from corner A. (I have marked it lightly in blue pencil.) You will need to reverse the fold along that line.
After reversing the fold, push down on corner A so that it aligns with the edge you folded into the middle.
Repeat this process with the other three corners. Rotate your paper ninety degrees.
Fold the bottom point up to where the corners meet at the middle.
Open your paper flat again.
Fold the bottom edge up along the fold line you just created, then reverse all the folds indicated by the pink pointy fingers in the image below. This will make a triangular pocket with two squares sitting on top.
This is the same fold that I used for the mash notes posted here.
Refold the top point. Your cover should look something like this.
The next step is to fold the corners of the four squares, tucking the points inside the squares. You may find it simplest to unfold your paper again, then fold in the four corners as shown below.
Refold your cover and insert the first and last pages of your book into the triangular corner pockets. If you feel that the pointed flap and the pointed pocket are not secure enough, you can use a bit of glue or double-sided tape to fix them in place.
Lock your book shut by inserting the pointed flap at one end of your cover into the triangular pocket at the other end.
The model was made to fit a little book that is 0.25″ (about 6.4 cm) thick. This is the maximum thickness that I would use with this cover. It is most suitable for thinner books.
I have been fiddling with a way to add a straight section to the pointed flap so that it could cover a deeper fore-edge. If I ever come up with something I will certainly share it!
Tomorrow is Christmas Day. As a present to my readers, I will be providing an index of all of this year’s Advent posts.