Faux Letterpress calendar

OK, so I lied, a bit.  I thought I was done with the whole calendar thing but not QUITE yet.  Given I don’t normally blog on a Saturday, this post is sort of an extra, and therefore I feel less guilty about returning to this topic.  And due to a couple of comments and a few emails about how to use the PDFs, and me mistakenly thinking that in general most people would be able to do what I do, copy nd paste the info into files the size they need to use the little calendar bits, I feel like I have to carry through on my promise to make a PDF that is ready to print and use, with no additional work.

BUT, I have tried, over the years, to make something that looks a bit like a Letterpress calendar.  It came up a few years back with my friend Nat and ever since I’ve felt there must be a way to make one, without a letterpress.  I know there was a commercial scrapbooking letterpress tool a few years back, but I’ve since seen them for sale on various sites, always with the same complaint – too hard to use, not a good quality outcome, messy, and the plates are prone to cracking.  That was what kept me for getting one when I saw them on some shopping channel or another.

Well, this is the state of my floor today:

…the most enormous mess.Having said that I do think I sorted out a method that I like.  I did a few samples to share.

Basically all I did was print the calendar bits, two to a page, centered at 2 inches and 6 inches landscape on an A4 sheet of white cardstock.  That lets me cut at the 4  inches and then shift that edge and cut at 4 inches again, easy peasy.

Then, I place an embossing folder over the top, above the printing – you should be able to see that in the photo above.  I emboss.Then, with a fairly light touch, hitting just the raised bits, I brayer chalk ink over the top – best to mask the bottom edge, just in case.

And here are some close ups so you can see more detail:

Where you have to be especially careful are the open areas at the edges.  Without the raised areas, the brayer will sometimes make contact with the depressions in the embossing, and you can see that even though I thought I was being careful I still got a little over-roll on the very edge. Still looks good overall.

I’ve tried and tried to get rid of the faint line from the botton of the embossing folder, but nothing seems to work.  Still, so long as it’s straight, I suppose I can live with it.

and finally, April.  OK so here’s the deal – you have to make sure that you are using the folder the right way round.  I let my attention wander, and I didn’t.  Rather than ditch it, I brayered over, to see the effect.  I like it.

This version is with the flourishes de-bossed (ie pressed in) and gives a different effect (which is actually less clear in the detail shot, I think – go back to the top and look at it there to really see the difference to the other months) to the EM-bossed version (on the back, so I just inked it to help you see)

Because they are too tall for a CD calendar I have to think of some other way to display them.  Not sot sure, but I have a few ideas.

Now, back to making those PDFs….