Sew Pretty: 15 Bookish Fabrics for Your Next Project

I recently decided to make myself a skirt. (With pockets!) This is sort of a big undertaking for me; I haven’t sewed myself a garment in a good 20 years and I’m a little intimidated by both the ancient sewing machine I inherited from my grandmother and the vintage skirt patterns my mother dropped off at my house.

But there is one unambiguously bright spot in this project: I get to go fabric shopping, and the fabric shopping game has changed since the last time I sewed. I used to just go to Jo-Ann’s and look at what they had there, but now I can just type “books” into the search engine at Spoonflower and I’m in heaven.


Bookish Fabrics


I fell down a fabric-shopping well there the other day and found a bunch of material I must have. (How will I pick just one? Looks like I’m making a few skirts.)

If you sew and love books, you need to see these.

(Want more? Last year Rioter Dana Staves fell down a similar rabbit hole and published a list of her own favorite literary fabrics.)

These Rainbow Book Shelves

For those of us who may or may not have organized their books by color at one point in their lives. (by inspirationz)

bookshelves fabric spoonflower

These More Neutral Shelves

Shelf images are often a riot of color, which is awesome, but which restricts your shirt choices if you’re making something like a skirt. I love this subdued, minimalist print. (by amy_g)

neutral bookshelves fabric

For Those Of Us Who Can’t Sew Straight Lines

The problem with bookshelf fabric is that there are a lot of lines and grids. If you’re straight-seam challenged, as I am, you can really see if your seams are off if you’re working with a fabric like that. Here is a more forgiving print (and a neutral one). (by myvisualmark)

book fabric

Love EBooks? There is a Fabric For You.

Be still my ereading heart. (by hugandkiss)

ereader fabric

These Literary Dinosaurs

Rawr. (by pinky_wittingslow)

bookish dinosaur fabric

This Vintage Comic Book Fabric

Is that (really) old-school Blue Beetle? Yes please. (by janbalaya)

comic book fabric

This Punny Fabric

Great lines in literature—get it? (by ceanirminger)

library fabric

This Love Letter to the Card Catalog

This is just adorable. (by sparegus)

This Clever Pattern

It took me a minute to see that the chevrons are books. (by bluebirdworkshop)

This Library Skelly

For the badass book lover. (by skellychic)
library skeleton fabric

This Bookish Paisley

For when you want to be subtle with your book love. (by scrummy)

This Library Spine Sticker Fabric

Celebrate your favorite genres (and the special books you find in the library) with this fabric. (by pkfridley)

library spine sticker fabric

This Little Free Library Fabric

Take a book, leave a book (by nadiahassan)

little free library fabric

This Amazing Library Book Card Scatter

Take my money. (by lellobird)

library card fabric

This Must-Have Book Damask

I need this fabric on everything I own, STAT. (by spacefem)

book damask


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