DIY Cookbook

I’m an ambivalent cook, and not a very intuitive one. So when I come across a good recipe, I hold onto it for dear life. Over the years, I’ve collected a hodgepodge of scribbled sticky notes and magazine tear sheets with favorite recipes.

The mess needed a home. So, I ordered a Rebinder (which is a binder made from recycled corrugated cardboard) and a box of sheet protectors for my recipes. The Rebinder was terrific, but not so great at repelling cooking drips & spills.

I bought a yard of green gingham oil cloth, and relying on my ancient memories of covering books in high school, I winged it. Here are my step-by-step instructions for making an oilcloth cover, written after the fact. I’m pleased with the results. I sewed the last steps while the cover was actually on the binder–it’s sewed on forever–which might be why it doesn’t buckle & lies nice and flat.

6 thoughts on “DIY Cookbook

  1. Top secret, of course. But I will divulge some to you & only you:

    Easiest & most satisfying recipe is red lentil soup, best nosh is roasted chick peas with sesame oil and cumin. My fanciest & most impressive recipes come from my mother-in-law.

    And then there are many recipes for homemade playdough–which is really closer to my speed.

  2. I’ve never sewn with oilcloth. Do you need to use a heavy duty needle in your machine? My mother gave me a “special” project to put all her recipes in a binder when I was in middle school. She still uses the binders and they have some of my favorite recipes–maybe I’ll make her a pretty new binder!

    • These are fantastic! Sadly, our setoelicn of oilcloth north of the border is pathetic. Hopefully one day, our oilcloth will come. Love the colours in all of these. The teachers must have been thrilled!

  3. I’ve been using my regular needle, but I think a heavy duty needle would work better. I think I found the right tension, but the stitches still looked a little funky to me. But oilcloth is so fun! I weirdly love it.

    • Purl soho has some “laminate cotton,” which I think is the same as oilcloth, on sale. It is from the pattern Nicey Jane, which not only has a fantastic name but is very appealing. I almost made Miss B a dress in the pink and red star pattern. Maybe you should pick some up!

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