Following up on my idea for using a screen print to make a cover for my new Kindle, I decided to see if I had what I needed without having to go shopping. I found a piece of fabric in my stash. It is a nylon, made for packs or purses—very heavy-duty, waterproof stuff. It seemed like it might be a good durable fabric for the cover and it just happened to be in a nice, rusty red that I love. Then I scavenged through my boxes of printing inks and tossed out several jars that had solidified. I found a greyed purple that seemed nice.
I set up my print station in the garage, for lack of a better work space. This is my screen printing setup:
The first thing I did was determine where I needed to position the fabric for the print to end up where it needed to be. Then I put strips of masking tape at the corners, so I would know where to position the fabric. I planned to make several prints.
The next step was to print a test piece. I spread a nice thick line of ink across the top of the screen, then lowered the screen onto the fabric and pulled the ink across the screen with a squeegee. Here's the test print:
Looks pretty good. I adjusted the positioning slightly for the real prints. Then printed three prints on the red fabric.
Yuck. Two problems. First, there is not enough contrast between the ink color and the fabric color. I wanted the print subtle, but not this subtle. Second, the nylon fabric is not taking the ink well. It has a texture that is interfering with a smooth application of ink and I think the nature of the fabric is such that the ink is just not adhering well. I have the feeling it might scrape right off, even after it dries. Back to the drawing board.
I still like the idea of the sturdy fabric, but printing it won't work. I find a smooth cotton in a good match and decide I will print on it, then sew the prints to the nylon. I mix up a lighter shade of ink and print four prints on cotton.
Here is the finished cover.
It was tempting to put a beautiful fabric on the inside, but I decided I did not want something that would scream at me in my peripheral vision as I was reading. Many of the covers that I saw online used these corner triangles to hold the Kindle in the cover, but made from the lining material. I hated the way that looked! So I was pleased with my idea of using a semi-sheer nylon fabric for the corners, which I think is fairly innocuous.
The kindle fits very snugly. In fact, it is a little tricky getting it under all four corners. But I guess this is good. I am pretty sure there is no way it will slip out. I made the cover so the front wraps to the back and closes with velcro. Here is the back.
All in all, I am quite pleased with how it turned out. I will have to use it for awhile, I think, to know if it works the way it needs to.