Not a fan of dangling bookmarks? Fine. You can still craft hand-stitched bookmarks that mark a place in the book and keep the needlework outside the book where it’s visible. What is this marvel of modern stitchery? The bookband.
Embroidery + Elastic = Bookband
Turn just about any bit of finished needlework into a bookband by adding elastic cord to make a loop. I used a Funk & Weber Designs Embroider Me! bracelet that was awaiting beads and a clasp and a recycled 1/16″ gold cord, probably off of a gift package.
Use a giant tapestry needle to open two holes on either end of the bracelet. Make the holes large enough so that you don’t need to thread the 1/16″ cord onto a needle, but can hand-feed it through the holes. I used my yarn-sized tapestry needle.
The loop—needlework plus cord—is about 16″ in circumference. I’d go smaller for mass market adult books.
I found the elastic cord didn’t knot very well, so I tightly wrapped the cut end to the loop with some of the size 8 pearl cotton I used on the bracelet.
If you’re a beader, you might use a large crimp bead or tube or use wire to wrap the two legs of the cord together.
I dabbed glue on the cut ends of the cord to keep the metallic gold covering from fraying.
Front and Back
Because we finish the back sides of our bracelets with pretty stitching, the bookband becomes more or less reversible. Cool, eh?
The elastic band marks the page while the needlework remains snug against the cover, visible but not dangling.