Disclosure: This blog contains links to my Amazon Associates affiliate page, and any purchases you make from that page may result in Amazon store credit for me. As always, I would never recommend something that I have not personally used and/or would not purchase with my own money.

One of my favorite recent projects has been the “notebook cover combo” of in-the-hoop designs perfect for a mini composition book or A6 notebook refill! As I make more and more of these designs, it has become impractical to keep information on where to find these adorable notebooks on each project description. Instead, all notebook cover projects will now link to this blog post. This way, as websites change their descriptions, my affiliate links change, or businesses change the sizes they offer, I can edit this post and not every individual project. 🙂

Video tutorial for a notebook cover can be found here.

Mini Composition Book Cover (5×7 and up)

These are my personal fave because I’ve found them in multiple places and their sizes are universal. Mini composition books measure 3.25″ wide (or right at 6.5″ when open and laid flat) and 4.5″ tall. You may notice from these numbers that they are the perfect size for a 5×7 in-the-hoop cover!

Here are some of the places I have gotten these notebooks. I will try to keep this page updated so the links aren’t broken when you’re shopping. Make sure that the link provided still shows the measurements 3.25″ by 4.5″, and if you see a product link that is incorrect for this project (they change their links sometimes!), please feel free to email me (designsbylittlebee at gmail dot com) and let me know!
🛒 Amazon Amazon Amazon. So I did several links for Amazon. These just depend on how many you need, whether there’s some kind of special, etc.
🛒 Dollar Tree. As with everything at Dollar(and-a-quarter) Tree, YMMV (your mileage may vary). I’ve seen huge stacks of these at some DTs and others, nothing! In January 2022 I actually ordered a case of them and had them shipped to my local store for pickup. It was 24 packs of 3 ($24 plus tax).
🛒 Walmart. I have gotten mine in-store, I’ve had them delivered with my groceries, I’ve ordered them for shipping with another products from Walmart! A tip: Walmart.com has become a bit of an “Amazon” – by that I mean, they sell items from other distributors. So make sure you look at the information on how you’ll get your item – Is it for pickup at your local store? Being shipped from the store? Being shipped by/from someone else? – before you check out.

Notes on construction:
💭 Personally, I made my in-the-hoop cover as wide and tall as would possibly fit into your 5×7 hoop. However, I’ve found that even in this space, with some thicker vinyls or thicker-cardboard notebooks, I use my office scissors to trim about 1/8″ off the notebook cover to be able to close the notebook cover better.
💭 I do not usually use an insert for “backing” as I find that these are so small that it adds bulk to the project, and frankly I feel it’s a waste of materials for something that is folded and covered. Who’s going to take your notebook out to look at the back of the embroidery? But if that’s your thing, you certainly can. Just place a piece of vinyl or whatever on the back of your design before the pockets, just like we do with any other in-the-hoop project.
💭 I like to use 1mm elastic cording to close my notebook. Poke a hole with awl, trim elastic cording, tie a knot, thread through the hole, voila. Some people like to stitch in a piece of foldover elastic. My designs come with instructions for both of these methods. I also offer a “barn door box” option for those who prefer that. Or, if you have software and enjoy merging, grab the barn door box alone for free and put it where you like it.
💭 Fonts to use on mini notebooks: Mini Monogram or Monogram with Outline, Jellybean, Honeybee.

First, we have our mini composition book and cover. These are my personal fave because I’ve found them in multiple places and their sizes are universal. Mini composition books measure 3.25″ wide (or right at 6.5″ when open and laid flat) and 4.5″ tall. You may notice from these numbers that they are the perfect size for a 5×7 in-the-hoop cover!

A6 Notebook “Refill” (6×10 and up)

I enjoy the size and professional/not “cutesy tiny” look of the A6 notebooks. However, they are a bit harder to work with because what you’re dealing with is actually a notebook “refill” and there is not exactly a universally accepted size. What I mean by this, is that you may purchase an A6 traveler’s notebook/journal/planner, and it is a typical A6 size, but when you go to purchase little notebooks to refill them, they could vary by a couple tenths of an inch vertically or horizontally. No big deal, right? Well, it’s a big deal if you’re making embroidery designs to match the refills!

So here is what I have found: the size that I created my notebook cover design was for these that are sized 3.9″ wide by 5.5″ tall: here, here, and here. This is what I found the most in Google and Amazon searches. However, a customer brought to my attention that there is a size that does not fit into my design, but she purchased this product because it was a better value for her project needs. This refill is 4.1″ wide and 5.6″ tall. And yes, that .2″ in the width makes a big difference! She had software and was able to easily edit the design. Subsequently I saw the same size for sale at Walmart.com, so I knew that this was not a one-off that only this customer would encounter.

I include the “larger” size in every notebook cover design that I sell. They fit in the same 6×10 hoop, and are as tall as I can fit in the 6″ height. I will include a PDF copy of this information in the zip file as well.

SO! If you have 3.9” wide notebooks, use the “smaller” file. If you have 4.1” wide, use the “larger” file. If you aren’t sure or can’t/don’t want to measure right now, use the larger just to be safe!