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PM Artists Studio printable papers – made a book

Like I mentioned yesterday, I did a crap job of capturing the process but I will try to add some nuggets to help you (and your friend Google) find the info you need.

This spine of the book is a variation on a Piano Hinge book. There was a challenge to use STICKS, and my stick was a Chopstick. There are a couple of videos still on YT from Club Scrap (remember them?) for making piano hinge books. This variation is just one stick, that makes a folded spine, and the pages are attached to that, rather than the stick linking each page.

The covers are decorated with elements from the kits and some of the bits of prints that weren’t perfect (laser printer issues mentioned yesterday)

And the pages also have pockets and tags and bits from the kit, or just pages cut in a useful way.

I have a couple more pages left to decorate, but don’t want to exactly duplicate the existing pages and I only have so many resources in the kit, so it’ll take some thought

You can see the papers (not all, but most) and they are deep and rich and lovely – and on sale. I also have a selection of stencils on the way too, now they offer free international shipping (over a reasonable amount for the order, if you only plan on doing one order a year LOL!) I am most anxious to get a set of stencils that are tomatoes. No idea why, I just really love them!

More on them when they hit my mailbox!

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In praise of mini-gel plates and fixing mistakes…

So I shared progress on the mini flag book, which I am mostly pretty happy with. But in the end I was kinda annoyed by the fact I had two serious lapses in judgement.

First, I neglected to do any decoration on the backs of all of those little flags. Would have been super easy to do before I put the whole thing together.

The second but related lapse was that even when I looked at them and thought hummm… I carried on and added the covers. I mean, clearly the universe was trying to warn me and I totally ignored it. So then I had to think of WTF I was going to do. I did try just using a dauber to add colour but it looked… not right

Tiny gel plate to the rescue!

I was MUCH happier with the effect there, and it was just by using one of the minis that I could sneak the plate in to the opening between the layers of flags. Phew. I slapped a tiny bit of nano tape onto a water bottle lid and added a tiny star. Also small enough to sneak between the layers of flags to stamp a coordinating image.

Very happy. It is not meant to add a lot, just make the backs of the flags a lot less…bare looking. Which it does.

So still left with a decision o the cover. I have an idea or two that should work. Let me play. Hum. Play or tidy… what will it be…


90% done but not quite.

So the thing I have been trying to make is something called a double flag book. There are very few photos of them (most annoying that there are some on Pinterest that lead nowhere – grrr) and no real tutorial. I don’t recall seeing one in any of my bookmaking books abut from the photos I have seen I thought I had an idea of how to make one. The elements are the slotted together accordions for the spine, then lots and lots of little flags. I’ve show how to make the slotted spine a few times before and I didn’t bother to photo those steps again. But basically you just need to add the flags on both sides of the accordion.

From there, you add the covers, as you would imagine. The only issue is the cover needs to be big enough to cover the width of both sets of flags when the book is collapsed/closed.

As you can see I used the little set of active affirmations from a few days ago to make an uplifting little book full of good advice. I wish I had thought to print on the back of the flags as well, because unless fully opened you can see more of the backs than I realized at first. Might have to go back and consider how best to solve that little problem!

Now, what next? Can I really let that small card box sit unloved for much longer? The affirmations would have worked equally as well with that, but now I’ve used them twice I am not sure my psyche can handle that much positivity LOL! I will consider and see what inspiration hits me. If it doesn’t, well, it will sit, accusing me of neglect, for a bit longer.


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Project progress! Gel printed with tissue resist

SO. I have moved on from the first stage of my project, with those tabs of cardstock covered in my tissue resist gel prints.

And each one has had some stamping, some stenciling, some spattering, and some edging in gold done to them.

A bit of a close up for you:

And this is likely to give the whole thing away! Or maybe not. I did say that I was struggling to find the instructions for something where I saw only a finished project when I checked online. I think I cracked it but it’ll have to wait till I’m done to be sure. It could all go pear-shaped even at this late stage…


My version of a Fodder Keeper

Although I enjoyed the Fodder Challenge, I let time get away from me and missed the discount days. Knowing my struggle with completing classes that isn’t an altogether bad thing, I guess. I saw a few versions of a fodder keeper book (perhaps from a class, maybe even from last year? Not sure) and decided it would suit my needs so I decided to figure one out. I THINK the original is constructed from chipboard, or the like, but I had an old book that has been kicking around for YEARS that was JUST the right size. I am on a mission to use things I have so…

I grabber the stack of papers I dyed … last year maybe? and some old US letter-sized page protectors. Useless, and yet I hold on to them. No more

After trimming off the strip with the holes and trimming the overhang, I used my Stabilo All pencil to mark where I wanted to sew to create some pockets. I folded and arranged each sheet

and cut a curve in some where I wanted the page split into stacked pockets, just for easy access

and trundled over to my sewing machine. After sewing all the pockets with the thread in my machine (grey – and I think I like it better than I would have black)

I cut the guts out of the book and covered it with some gel prints from a week or so ago. Just random play.

And when it came to the spine, and adding in the pages, I had a bit of a brainstorm. I have this box of name-tag/badge holders and I thought I could use them in a couple of ways. First, I used the elastic to make a sort of Traveller’s Journal style arrangement, where the folded sheets would slip under the elastic. I like that as it would mean they were removable.

I wasnot keen on the messy spine, so I threaded both ends thru some large-hole beads. Not perfect, but OK and decorative, I guess.

The length of the elastic from the badges was pretty long, and the little metal tips made threading them super easy. They went from inside out of the top and bottom holes, then came in from the outside (bottom thru top, top thru bottom) then both out the middle holes in the centre of the page protector and the middle of the book spine! This presented me with a great extra place to add something unexpected. TWO somethings, actually, but that will have to wait for tomorrow. I have to sort out the best what to photograph it so it makes sense.


A little book and a bit about home printing…

I have purchased a TON of digital images and int he past I always stressed about them smearing in an art journal, or the colours being quite dull when printed. Not any more. I have had a couple of packs of this paper, in a couple of weights, and I have to say it is fab for printing things and having them come out quite bright and lovely, even in normal (rather than the ink-greedy HIGH quality) mode.

I hope you can see how bright and detailed that colour is. The paper is from PPD and it comes in 120, 170 and 210 gsm. I love the double-sided coating version cause then it doesn’t matter how I load it into my printer!

They have a Buy 100, Get 100 free offer on at the moment. I’m stocking up!

It isn’t just colour – black & white pop on it too. I made this little booklet, based on a kind of a running family joke around our disdain for the font Comic Sans. I know. We are weird. The booklet is made on mixed media paper, torn at an angle, to create a stairstep effect when folded.

and the background is warm neon colours on one side and cool on the other so you see glimpses of both when it is folded closed

I added some spatters and some stenciling, using many of the plastic lettering stencils I have hanging about in black and white to add more interest

The focal images are these odd birds, from a digital kit. I just like them a lot – I can’t say the tie between birds and fonts is super strong but the images are striking. The cover it tied and when you open it you see the warm side first. Flipping it over reveals the cool side and the final “joke” is in, of course, Comic Sans.

Just a bit of playfulness – at least it got me using my gel plate, which was fun. It’s been quite neglected now for a while. I am also working on some odd ATCs, using these same images but with a more surreal feel to them. I even have the perfect name for the series: Absurd Birds! It’s coming along.

School is back in session so my days will be a lot freer, I hope. More crafting! Yay!

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LifeBook class – the accompanying mini-journal

So, the little “no-sew mini art journal” from the class is actually one of the one sheet zine style books. I found the istructions a little hard to follow, but maybe because I have made so many of this style booklet, some with way more pages, and I have in my head the way to make them. I looked thru that stash of rubbish and found another over-spray sheet that was A3 and decided that would be what I made my booklet out of. I used the 16 square option, to make a booklet with 16 pages/faces to decorate. I wish I could recall where I found this image, but basically, it’s this. If you recognize it, do let me know.

Again, my sheet was A3, and I have made these from many different shaped and sized rectangles

this final book is about 3 x 4 -ish.

And here is where the text, and a few other quotes from Kurt, came in to play. I messed up a page and some of the text is edited or re-arranged, but the sentiment is still there. and I love how it turned out. All the stamps are by Teesha Moore.

I spied a little bit of a clear sleeve on my desk, and fashioned that into a holder for the book – and the book will sit happily at the back of the bowl piece as a little surprise.

The quote bears repeating:

Creativity flows from deep within, a raging torrent so powerful it will destroy if kept in check, or restrained in any way.

And while I am at it, the little image on the bowl also has a good quote but it is tiny and hard to read. It says:

Sailing on the edge of creativity.

So, there you go. I learned a lot from this whole process and I found it quite useful. I made art that I love, and is uniquely my own, with only the barest influence of the original class (and the words of the letter, and the stamps – what part of using them made it mine, in putting them together in the exact way I did, is a discussion for another day LOL!) and that class was one I was dead set against even attempting. Lesson learned. I can take SOMETHING from every class, even it is is not at all what the teacher intended. And I am OK with that.

It took a long time to make this book. and my desk is littered with little stamps and all sorts of other stuff I used to make it. Time for a pre-WOYWW tidy up. Then on to the next class. I may need to do a jar, and pull the classes at random…

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A lovely little ATCoin booklet

So often, it all comes down to math. Which is a pain for the “math challenged” like me. I made a little folded book for the Mixed Media Emporium challenge and then, cause it was fun, I made a little blizzard book as well. Same idea, a B&W masterboard was the beginning, then the book sprang from that. I haven’t added anything to the pages yet, but it looks like this:

The pages are a very long (pieced) accordion that snakes thru the folds, but I found my very long roll of black paper and I will possibly redo that at some point. But the thing is, it gave me the idea to make a blizzard book that doubled as a coin holder. I folded a few and was struggling to get the dimensions right. So I had a good look at the structure and all at once logic kicked in. It’s all about the ratios. I need my squares to be about 2.75 inches to fit a 2.5 inch coin so I need my paper to be 8 1/4 inches tall (or 3 x the finished dimensions) and I need 8 pages so the width has to be 22 inches (or 8 x the finished dimensions.) So I need 8.25 x 22 inches.

This is actually a really handy size, in the UK! To accomplish it all you need to do is take an A4 size sheet of paper and cut the long side to 11 inches. Then, watch this video and stick them together into an 8.25 x 22 inch strip using washi tape! Again, I could show you all the photos of me doing the process but honestly her video is really good and she shows the trick I don’t have a name for, for folding an 8-panel accordion accurately, better than scoring lines. The blizzard book instructions begin at about the 24:40 mark, but you will get a lot of good info by watching the whole thing.

As the first fold you are making is at the halfway point your fold is actually at the washi join. You can cover that at the end with a little more washi.

Joining like this means you don’t have any point where you are folding a double thickness and that works way better, trust me.

I also had the cool belt-buckle fold in my mind, and a random strip of black light card on my desk, so I fashioned a far easier closure using it. The width doesn’t matter a lot, but the length should be about 4 x with width of whatever you are wrapping – so 1bout 12 inches in this case. The fold in step two should be about as far away from the edge of the book as the strip is wide. You can simply trim the long tail in step 3 so it matches the width of the band.

You can reverse it so the tuck is at the front, if you want it to show. It isn’t super secure, more slightly decorative but you could add a daub of glue or adhesive and stick it to create a cute belly band closure – with double-sided paper it would be even more decorative. In my travels I also stumbled on a video that said you can size a blizzard book easily to fit any item by using the following formula:

height of the paper = the height of the item + 2 x the width of the item (plus 1/4 to 1/2 inch wiggle room)

width of the paper = 8 x the width (plus 1/4 to 1/2 inch wiggle room)

It more or less works. Were you run in to trouble is with standard paper sizes. So a 3 x 4 inch ATC CARD would require:

portrait: 4 + 1.5 + 1.5 = 7 (+ 1/4 to 1/2 inch so let’s say 7.5 inches tall and 3 x 8 = 24 + 1/2 or

7.5 x 24.5 inches for portrait orientation of the ATC

landscape: 3 + 2 + 2 = 7 (+ 1/4 to 1/2 inch so let’s say 7.5 inches tall and 4 x 8 = 32 + 1/2 or

7.5 x 32.5 inches for landscape orientation of the ATC

A4 paper doubled is too small. Even A2 sized paper is too small widthwise for either of them. Even 12 x 12 doubled is not big enough, unless you ignore the extra wiggle room – I’m planning to try to fold an ATC card sized book using two 12×12 sheets and will report back on how well an ATC card will fit it I omit the wiggle room Watch this space. WOYWW tomorrow and darling daughter has a hospital appointment. Why are Wednesday so troublesome lately??

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A Black & White book

Many moons ago I made a book that was kind see-thru, with a bit of solid card added behind, to block the light and add another dimension to the project. It was one of my favourite books ever and I decided te revisit the idea for a B&W challenge on the Mixed Media Emporium. I began with an A2 sheet of tracing paper (like vellum, sort of( and made a masterboard with black and white paint, using mostly my own handmade stamps.

A couple of close-ups for you:

I folded and cut the pages, zine-like, but added a canvas-tape spine and a 3-hole pamphlet stitch binding because the tracing paper was a bit more fragile then actual vellum would have been. I wanted the size, so the pages would turn out about 4 x 6 inches. I printed some quotes, white text on a black swirl and black text on white circles, then put it all together. Here is a selection of the pages:

And the cover:

The pages really come to life when you look at them in front of a bright window, where the solid elements block the light and create interesting shadows, mixed with the different levels of opaqueness of the paint:

The whole thing was a bit of fun – I really enjoyed making the masterboard and working just in B&W was interesting.

Still dithering over the junk journal. I was trying to make it work out in some way to cover the 1/2 year remaining (so like 26 weeks or 6 months maybe) but the page count just was not working out. So I am a bit stumped. Might just have to take the plunge and see where it takes me. But not yet – the weekend is for cards!

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Finally done with that double accordion book

I finished it and I am really happy with it! It was a hard fought battle, getting it where I wanted it, and it took me about three days to get from this:

To this:

And a little closer on the covers – that lady with the binoculars stamp is one I made with a stamp-making kit, 10+ years ago and it still works beautifully. All the rest of them, save the text circles, are Teesha Moore stamps.

Interesting to note that the cover quote is NOT by Gandhi, as is often claimed. He did say

“We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our body. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do.”

which The Quote Investigator says in thematically similar – it has an interesting bit of info of where the quote might have come from, if you are interested.

Phew. Day 80 is in sight. This is day 78: