Monday, October 13, 2008

Make it on Monday

Sorry I stopped posting yesterday but I had 7 episodes of Dancing With the Stars to watch, plus last week's Grey's Anatomy, & an old episode of CSI so I could watch last week's episode and know what was going on in that world. Still haven't watched the latest CSI. Life got in the way. As if that weren't distraction enough I also worked on a couple of top secret projects, wearing my "Designer" hat. Priorities.
The first photo here is a cover I made Saturday for another of the 5x8 legal pads. But if you're not interested in covering note pads, try some of these techniques and make a totally different project. Click on the photo to enlarge it and really look at the detail. I've used lots of things and I'm still not sure it's finished.
Let's begin with a list of supplies you'll need for this. Feel free to substitute your favorites for anything not readily available in your studio. I've got mirror board, but aluminum flashing tape adhered to cardstock will also work, my Xyron & Sizzix Big Kick, a Cuttlebug embossing folder, alcohol inks, a tablet, white card stock cut to fit as the cover, scrapbook paper, stickers, wrapping paper, expoxy word stickers, Design Adhesives, variegated leafing, Perfect Pearls & tiny wand, a button and some Weldbond adhesive or any glue that will hold a button and dry clear.
Perhaps you've seen mirror board in your craft store. I know AC Moore carries it on the aisle with construction paper, poster board & origami paper, just over from the scrapbook section. If you don't have this, but you do have a roll of aluminum flashing tape, simply adhere some to cardstock of any color. If you're looking for this tape in Home Depot, check the roofing aisle near the actual rolls of flashing. Do NOT let them steer you to plumbing. Wrong tape. If you have a Harbor Freight nearby, it's packaged 3 rolls of 3" width for far less than you'll find one 2" roll at Home Depot. Sorry guys, I love your store, but I save all those extra dollars to purchase rubber stamps. It's a rule!
I've cut the mirror board into rectangles that will fit the embossing folder. I think this one is called Pebbles. Simply sandwich it inside the folder, sandwich it on your Sizzix and run it through to impress the texture.
I've used a punch and created numerous flowers for upcoming projects. I like these just as they are in silver, but for my notepad I've used Ranger's Acohol Inks for more impact. My husband has asked me to emboss enough rectangles to cover a fullsize legal pad for him, mounted onto black so that they look like panes of a window. Should be cool, huh?
The above photo shows my pad, the white cardstock and the scrapbook paper for the front cover, both cut to size. The patterned paper has been cut to the correct width, but is left at it's full 12" length.
If you don't have a Xyron use any adhesive of your choice to adhere your papers. I use mine for everything, no matter how small, running multiple pieces through at once. Here the front cover is going through.
You'll see that I've trimmed the back cover following the scrollwork pattern. This piece will completely cover the back of my tablet and wrap to the front, overlapping for a more dramatic look.
Because I've run this through the Xyron, placement is key. If you're good with an Exacto knife, cut your paper wider than necessary, adhere it, and then trim along the edges. But if you take your time, even paper cut exactly to size can be adhered with no problem.

My front cover with only the two papers, awaiting embellishments. Don't you love the look of that pattern across the top, with the scalloped border?
Here are just a few of the things I thought might be used on the cover. When I ran the patterned paper through the Xyron, I also added 2 of the journaling tickets and a small piece of white cardstock. Rather than running the lightweight floral wrapping paper through and wrinkling it, I used white cardstock. Once the adhesive was applied to it, I placed the wrapping paper on top, smoothed it down, and trimmed off the portion I wanted.
The next time you're out shopping, be sure to check the clearance section of the store. I found these stickers over a year ago, knowing I'd find a use for them one of these days, and sure enough, I did. In this photo you can also see that I stamped a sentiment onto my journaling ticket.
This last photo shows off the Design Adhesive Nouveau Leaves pattern. I simply cut them apart on the strip, placing them down individually where needed. The 2 on the left have been covered in leafing and the one on the right is covered with Ranger's Perfect Pearls.
Now scroll back up to the top of this post and take another look at the finished pad. It took me longer to take the photos, download them, and post this blog than it did to cover the note pad.
Anytime you've got a chance to play, make the most of your time. I've still got lots of punched flowers stored in a ziploc bag for future art. And I've embossed extra pieces of the mirror board because you never know when I might need a metallic strip for something. Here's an extra tip for you: if you like to make books and want hinges, cover both sides of cardstock with the aluminum flashing tape and make your hinges from those. The flashing tape will continue to be flexible forever so that your book can be opened and closed for years to come. I know they sell die-cuts and punches that look like hinges, so if you don't own one, ask your friends or your local stamp or scrapbook store if they have one. Then prepare your cardstock ahead of time so that when you can punch your hinges on your next shopping spree. And one final tip. When I applied the alcohol ink to my flowers I preferred the coverage I got by pouring out drops directly onto them, rather than using the felt applicator. But if you're wanting to accent the embossed pattern only, by all means use the felt.
I bought a package of these 5x8 pads at Office Depot for $6, but they also sell them for less at BJ's, Sam's or CostCo. Make several while you've got all your supplies out and give them as gifts. And if you own a binding system (Bind-It-All, Rollabind, Rubicoil, etc.) you can make books of all kinds using these techniques. Visit your local Dollar Tree and buy some of their $1 photo albums or scrapbooks, and cover them to suit your tastes. And if you like the cover as is, just add some embellishments of your own to make it unique.
If you like the idea of the embossed flowers, cover both sides of your cardstock with the flashing tape and emboss. Now you can ink both sides, and best of all, the tape makes your flowers moldable, which means you can adhere them to cards using a brad in the center if you choose, and curling the petals for dimension. (That's why I recommend you use the tape on both sides. If the back is visible, it will have a finished look as well.)
It's Monday. Go make art!

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