Journaling Bible Sweater free crochet pattern for book cover

About a month ago, my daughter demanded that I open the little packs of yarn I had been hoarding in my stash for years. I like sets and collections of things kept in tidy order. She likes to throw things around the house. 

Needless to say, I gave in and she loved holding and throwing and retrieving the tiny balls of yarn. After I collected them all back and stored them away safely, I began to think of projects I could make with them. Maybe a set of Christmas ornaments? Colorful crocheted flowers for a spring wreath? A neat scarf? 

On one of her retrievals, she brought back 4 or 5 colors that went beautifully together and I knew I had to make something with stripes in those colors. That night I began to make a little cozy sweater for my journaling Bible. I had made one years ago for my study Bible out of Lion Brand's discontinued Microspun yarn, but it didn't fit my ESV journaling Bible.

It took me a few days to finish it and when I did I posted it to the Illustrated Faith Bible Journaling Community on Facebook (click HERE to join) and it kinda became a hit! I think the pictures have over 1,100 likes and so many wonderful comments. Wow!

I would absolutely love to make these and sell them, however, I just haven't worked out a time-sensitive way to do that. There are sooooo many journaling Bibles on the market now and they are all different sizes, so each cover or sweater would have to be a custom order and as a full-time mom, I just can't work that into my schedule right now. Perhaps in the future.

Until then, I thought I would share the super simple pattern if you were inclined to make one for yourself.

So here we go... 

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  • These instructions are in U.S. terms. 
  • This is my first time blogging a crochet pattern. Be kind as I'm sure I've probably made some mistakes. I've tried to be as clear as possible.
  • I did find my original version was a little too loose and stretchy. After some of my initial pictures, I removed a row and made the "pockets" deeper. These changes are reflected in the pattern below.
  • This pattern assumes you know the basics of crochet. If you don't, it is a super easy hobby and there are lots of great beginner tutorials on YouTube. For this pattern, you will need to know how to make a chain stitch and a half double crochet, as well as a single crochet for the joining at the end.
  • The pattern is written to fit the ESV double column journaling Bible by Crossway. Instructions in purple and in parentheses are to customize it to fit your Bible.

  • 1 pack of Lion Brand Bon Bons (Note: there are 8 balls in each pack. I used 7 balls, BUT I chose 5 colors from the Nature pack and 2 plus a little more purple from the Beach pack. You can pick as few or as many colors/packs as you would like. The packs I used are 100% cotton while the others are acrylic and will produce a different feel and may stretch a little more.)
  • Size F/3.75mm crochet hook like Clover Soft touch HERE or Lion Brand HERE
  • Tapestry needle for weaving in ends
  • Scissors
  • Your Bible

Chain 86 (or length = width of front cover + width of spine + width of back cover + 7" for the 2 "pockets").
Row 1: half double crochet (HDC) in 2nd chain from hook and in each chain across to end. Chain 1. Turn.
Row 2. HDC in each stitch across.
Repeat row 2 for a total of 27 rows (or for how many rows to = the height of your Bible when fabric slightly stretched). My stripe color sequence is below.

Weave in all ends! Yuck!
To make "pockets" or sleeves in which to insert the cover:
This is a difficult explanation to type, but it is super easy to do! Sorry the pics are dark... dreary rain today!

With wrong side facing you, count and mark 16 stitches from each end (or approximately 3.5") and fold in both ends. 

With right side facing you and on the top edge of your rectangle, insert hook in the back loop of the 17th stitch and the 16th stitch (or where you marked 3.5") and pull up a loop of edging color (I used pink). Chain 1. Single crochet (SC) in the back loops of stitches across. Don't forget to SC the last 16 stitches together (pic below). 

Rotate work and repeat on bottom edge. 

Weave in ends and try your new sweater on!!!

** You can also simply whip stitch the tops and bottom of pockets in coordinating color if you don't want to SC across.

Color sequence:
Foundation chain and first 3 rows: purple
1 row = light purple
2 rows = pink
1 row = beige
3 rows = blue
1 row = brown
3 rows = green
1 row = purple
3 rows = light purple
1 row = pink
2 rows = beige
1 row = blue
2 rows = brown
1 row = green
2 rows = purple

leftover yarn

finished #biblesweater
For years, I have had a stretchy fabric book cover on my Bible just to protect it and make it cute (before painting the covers became a thing). I found that keeping that cover on under my new sweater allows it to sit smoothly if that makes sense. It doesn't stretch weird or slide around. And the pink cover gives me an extra pocket to store photos or whatever.


with pink stretchy cover

with new sweater

inside front cover
I hope you enjoyed this. Let me know if you have any questions. And if you make one and share it on social media, tag me or use the hashtag #BibleSweater 

Keep creating,
Ann :) 

Bible Journaling Psalm 119 flower tutorial

Psalm 119: 49-50
Remember Your word to your servant,
in which You have made me hope.
This is my comfort in my affliction,
that Your promise gives me life.

The other night, I just needed some time to play with my watercolors. After making a few mistakes on my little hot air balloon and having green run into the background (see below), I decided to dabble on some "sunset" colors on the facing page.

hot air balloon

It was fun and allowed time for the hot air balloon to dry enough for me to add another layer of blue to the sky. And it turned out good enough! Now the "sunset" page was drying and I had no idea what to do with it so I let it sit overnight. 

Yesterday, I had more time to play and thought I'd try a floral piece inspired by the super-talented Megan Wells. Please check our her website HERE... full of inspiration, video tutorials, classes, and amazing books. And give her a follow on Instagram... so colorful and fun!!!

I went about things a little differently (because I have a hard time painting "loosely" and because of the supplies I typically use) so hopefully she won't mind if I share a brief tutorial on how I created this page! :) xoxo

Steps (with affiliate links to products I used below):

1. Paint the background with watercolor paint. Allow to dry.

2. Sketch flowers or whatever you want (maybe your word of the year!) in pencil. 

3. Trace over sketch with waterproof pen. Gently erase pencil lines.

4. Paint entire background with white acrylic craft paint. Allow to dry.

5. If you're like me and got a lot of white on the black pen, then re-trace over pen lines. See below picture for the before and after of this step!!!

6. Add fine details/touch up with smaller black pen and white pen.

7. Done!

Possibly my favorite page so far!

favorite supplies

The below links are affiliate links. this means I receive a small percentage if you make a purchase using these links. I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Bible - ESV double column journaling Bible
(mine has a black cover, but look how cute this one is!)

Watercolors - Prima Marketing tropical palette

Paint - Folk Art acrylic craft paint in Wicker White 
(best prices can be found at Wal-mart, Hobby Lobby, or Michael's Craft stores)

Black Pens - Faber-Castell PITT pen (sizes 1,5 and S)

White Pen - Signo Uni Ball UM-153

And check out Megan's latest book on painting animals! Too cute! And her Bible Journaling book and online classes will be released later this year!

Keep doodling,
Ann :)