Creating a new mileage book for my day job

My old book is just about used up. 

   
 
Joe’s book is just about as empty. He has repeatedly asked me to make him a new one.  Since we are home for a few days it is time to get this job done.  

I plopped down a bunch of 12 by 12 papers in various design styles in front of Joe and made him choose. He chose a paper I wasn’t expecting. 

   
 
Using some Heidi Swapp and Graphic 45 pieces for cover art, then placing both sets of covers in the press Joe made for me, the books are ready to be punched assembled and bound. 

   
 
We have one more trip to do for my day job then home for two weeks. I will finish these books when I get home. I have to do my cover art. 

  
YAY for getting in my craft room and spending some quality time with paper and glue. 

Leslie

   

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New construction project takes aim at disasters.

What am I talking about? :/

I had a big problem and I needed to solve it before I could go any further with the Pop Tarts box alteration.  Ribbon drawer was a flaming mess (I’d use the other “F” word but it is highly inappropriate).  Then I had another mess with my scrap pieces of chipboard hurtling to their doom as they leaped from the shelf they were stored on.

I made six boxes from the scrap chipboard pieces.  The pieces measure as follows:

  • Bottom of box – 6 inches by 3-1/4 inches (1 per box)
  • Sides of box – 6 inches by 1-1/2 inches (2 per box)
  • Front and back of box – 3-1/4 inches by 1-1/2 inches (2 per box)

You will see in the photo that my front and back pieces are taller than the sides of the box.  I just didn’t want to cut them down.  Call me lazy :/

Handmade chipboard box

Handmade chipboard box

There will be a full tutorial on  making this box on Wednesday, October 21, 2015.  I have to edit the video first.

I used four sheets of 8-1/2 x 11 kraft colored card stock cut into one inch strips.  I cut them from the 11 inch width and got 11 strips from each sheet of paper.

Kraft card stock cut into 1 inch strips

Kraft card stock cut into 1 inch strips

Each piece of card stock was scored down the center at 1/2 inch.  These strips are used to put the boxes together and give the chipboard strength.  I got out my “Big Guns”.  The giant roll of double sided adhesive I purchased a couple years ago from a surplus store in Wichita, Kansas.

Adding adhesive to the strip of card stock

Adding adhesive to the strips of card stock

I didn’t cover the boxes with paper and decorate them up all nice and sweet.  They won’t be seen by anyone…..maybe not even ME :/

Box to hold my ribbon

Box to hold my ribbon

After creating six of these boxes, that flaming mess of a ribbon drawer is now organized.  One construction project took care of TWO DISASTERS.  Go Me!  😀

Organized ribbon drawer

Organized ribbon drawer

Now that I have done all of that work…..I wonder if I will get back to the paper covered Pop Tarts box?  Leslie, get your butt in gear and finish that project!

Leslie

Final Episode: Heat Embossing Techniques

At the request of one of my YouTube subscribers for information about heat embossing, I have created several videos on this subject.  Seems like nearly a bazillion of them 😀

When a person does a search on YouTube for heat embossing the resultant videos all show how to use rubber stamps with heat embossing powder.  Not every crafter has a stash of rubber stamps, more especially those that are just getting into this craft.

Give them six months to a year and their crafting space will look almost as bad as mine does.

This week’s set of four technique videos are all about embellishments.  Brads, plastic clear faceted items, chipboard die cuts with pre-printed sentiments and coloring, raw chipboard die cuts just waiting to be dressed up spiffily, and I even go so far as to do injustice to Mother Nature and create a hybrid flower from the plethora of leaves left on a silk flower bouquet after I’ve snipped nearly all the flowers off.

Next Wednesday a new series will begin.  What it will be about….I’m working on that one 😀

Leslie

Personalize a book for a child.

I finally have something to share.  A personalized children’s book for my grandson who will be five this November.

It has taken me most of the month to create this.  Energy levels and mood swings have run amok as I’m recovering from a Sepsis illness.  I won’t bore you with the tawdry details.

A big shout out to Shelly Makowski for checking in on me via text messages during my long absence.  Thank you Shelly.

A DISCLAIMER:  I don’t consider myself to be a prize winning children’s book author.

The concept for this book came about because of a long ago memory.  About 30 plus years ago a publishing company had a Christmas promotion.  Parents could write in and submit the name of each of their children to the publisher.  For a fee, the child’s name would be placed throughout the Christmas story and the personalized book would be mailed to the child just in time for Santa’s visit.

This book is about Simon and the day he climbed a tree.

The book of Simon

The book of Simon

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The papers I have used are all from my stash.  The majority of them are really very old….circa 2005.  Of course, I had to use my Graphic 45 ABC Primer paper from my stash for this book.

Everything has been glued to chipboard.  This is a book, not a mini album, and I felt it would be required of me to securely attach all of the story components.  That way a little boy, or his Mom or Dad, won’t have to worry about things getting lost or put in the wrong spot.  I think it might even be safe to say this book may even survive the toss test.  Maybe even the buried under toys and blankets test.

In the coming week I will be back with more creations.  My business paperwork is nearly done.  Once that is completed I can dedicate more time in my craft room and start making things for my family for Christmas.  With the way this crazy illness saps my strength I figure I will need the extra time.

I hope I have inspired you to create something fun and whimsical.

Leslie

Getting started making your book.

BEFORE you begin the process of cutting on the text shapes for your book you need to think about the finished project.  Is it going to be….

  • Using brown paper bags for book pages
  • Using thick card stock to mat the text shapes and photos
  • How will your book be set up for page flipping
  • What type of binding are  you going to use
  • Will you use the accordion style hinge using card stock
  • Will you be using a binding machine like a Bind-It-All or a Cinch
  • Will you use a spiral binding or a metal binding with the machines

ALL of these considerations need to be thought out before you begin cutting away at your text shapes for your book.  Once you cut out the shape there is no going back…unless you reprint the page and start over.

Story page 1

Story page 1

If you have a style of mini album making you are comfortable with and want to stick with that there is no reason to change what you are comfortable with.  Cut out the shapes and mount them to card stock.  Crop  your photos to fit your pages and your style and do what you are good at.

I, however, like to write checks my mind is not prepared to cash :/  Complicated works of art seem to be my forte.  People with common sense say “Whoa!  That woman has done lost her mind if she thinks I’m going to jump off the cliff with her!”

Feel free to use my “Mentoring” as a guide.  Do what you can and are able to do with your skill level.

Now on to the show.

Cut the shape away from the paper.  Leave some room all around the shape for the actual part of the fiddly bits.  Using a ruler, make a straight pencil line on both the top and bottom of the image.  Draw the line from edge to edge.  As you can see in the photo below.

Draw a straight line at top and bottom of image

Draw a straight line at top and bottom of image

Carefully, with scissors or a craft knife, cut along the pencil lines.  Then where the image and pencil lines intersect cut away the paper along the image border.  As shown in the photo below.

Cut the image as shown

Cut the image as shown

When it comes to images that are not circular do the same thing with the ruler and pencil to define the area.  As the example below of an arrow shape.  Draw the bottom line along the bottom of the arrow and extend it outward a bit.

 

Draw a straight line along the bottom of the image

Draw a straight line along the bottom of the image

Draw a straight line along the top of the image and extend it out a little ways.  As seen in the next photo.

Draw a straight line across the top of the image

Draw a straight line across the top of the image

Cut along the bottom line until you come to the edge of the shape that moves upwards.  Follow the image border until you get to the top pencil line then continue cutting to the outer edge.  See the photo below.

 

Cut around the image leaving a margin on the side

Cut around the image leaving a margin on the side

When you have completed cutting out all the images in this fashion the next thing to do is to trace around the images on chipboard.

THIS IS AN IMPORTANT NOTE:  Make sure to LEAVE 1/2 inch of open space between the image and the edge of the chipboard before you trace the image.  This will give you the area necessary for binding.

Lay your image on the chipboard.  Aline the outer edge of the image 1/2 inch from the edge of the chipboard.  Draw around the cut out shape.  As you go along your chipboard will look like this.

Leave 1/2 inch space from image edge to paper margin

Leave 1/2 inch space from image edge to paper margin

Trace around the image shape.

Trace the image

Trace the image

Go on to the next shape and trace around it.

Trace around the next image

Trace around the next image

Continue tracing your images until you have finished with the last one.

Trace around all your images

Trace around all your images

NOTE:  A helpful thing to do.  On the back side of your image write a number and place that same number on the chipboard traced item.  See the photo below to understand what I have just said :/

 

Number the back side of the image and the corresponding traced image

Number the back side of the image and the corresponding traced image

This will help you keep track of the images and the chipboard pieces once they are cut out.

The placement on the chipboard is not important.  ONLY having the margin along the chipboard edges.  You will have some images upside down in orientation.

Images in traced out places

Images in traced out places

Along the straight lines of your images you can use a metal ruler and the craft knife for your cuts.

Use a metal ruler and craft knife on straight cuts

Use a metal ruler and craft knife on straight cuts

The curved areas are just a tad bit tricky.  You will have to GO SLOW in cutting around the curves.  Start at the cut area of the straight part then carefully work your way around the curve.  You will need to make a minimum of three passes with the craft knife to cut cleanly through the chipboard.

Carefully cut along the curve with the craft knife

Carefully cut along the curve with the craft knife

When you have cut all the way through the shape will easily release from the chipboard.  Keep cutting until the piece comes free with gentle pressure.

DON’T YANK THE PIECE.  You will tear it and then have to start over.  There will be utterances made by you children should not hear :/

Sorry about the out of focus photo :/

Cut around the curve shape then gently pull to release the shape

Cut around the curve shape then gently pull to release the shape

Get your pieces all cut out.  You will be ready to do something else by this time.  If only to give your hands and fingers a rest.

 

Pieces cut out

Pieces cut out

Don’t get upset about the pointy edges that will appear from your cuts.  This is no big thing.

Don't worry about the pointy bits

Don’t worry about the pointy bits

When you have sufficiently recovered from the strenuous task of earlier….you will need to use a sanding block or an Emory board to sand off the sharp point.

Sanding block

Sanding block

Now you see it….

Pointy bit

Pointy bit

Now you DON’T see it.

 

Sanded off point

Sanded off point

I think this is enough for today.  Besides, Joe is in need of my “gofer” skills :/

Leslie

Create and illustrate your own story book.

I have been missing in action due to the fact that Joe, my husband, has had surgery on his left hand and wrist due to Carpul Tunnel Syndrome.  He had the surgery a week ago Thursday and I  have been acting as “Nurse”.

Joe's stitches

Joe’s stitches

During the time I was tending to him and in close proximity to his recliner I took advantage of the few moments between being Nurse and “gofer” to play with a desktop publishing software I have on my computer.

Here is the set up.  One of our daughter’s birthday is in April.  I am making a “book” for her.  For those of you, out there in the “World Wide Webs”, that have older children or have raised your children into adulthood can remember the times when you were not quite so sure  your parenting skills were keen enough to raise children.  You hoped your children would be healthy, self reliant, and have good common sense even though you screwed up a bazillion times and have many regrets.  Maybe I should rephrase that.  I worried that I had screwed up our kids….

This book I am making is to give Tiffany a boost in her self confidence for the job she is doing with her little boy.  He knows he is loved by his extended family and he can trust the adults that surround him.  That is no small feat with all the looney toons that populate our communities and families.

There will be several blog posts regarding this book.  At this point I have 78 photos to share in the process of making this….and I’m about half way finished at this point.  I don’t think you want to sit for several hours going through what I’ve done so far.  There are a lot of steps involved in this project.

I will share some snippets of my progress to get your mind working and thinking about how you can change your “Mini Album” perspectives and play with self publishing on a very small scale.

Most people have a Desktop Publishing Software on their computers.  I use a Mac and the software I use is THE PRINT SHOP.  My software is old, and I mean OLD.   I haven’t updated it since I bought it in 2004.  Can you tell that I don’t use it?

Anyway, I thought I would knock the dust off of it and give it a try.

NOTE:  If you think this project is intriguing and you would like to attempt this….and have very little experience with any Desktop Publishing you may want to stick with shapes that are easy to get text to appear in the shapes.  Trust me on this.

The following is the “Story” for the book.  I have used many circles and squares with an arrow or two in for good measure.  I printed my pages on Wausau Exacto Index 110 pound paper.  I purchased a ream of paper from my local office supply store.  I don’t know how the paper weight will translate to metric equivalents for the Europeans and Canadians.  Just some heavy weight printer paper.

Story page 1

Story page 1

Story page 2

Story page 2

Story page 3

Story page 3

Story page 4

Story page 4

Here are a couple pages from the book I am creating so you can see how I’m using the shapes and some sweet photos of my adorable grandson.

 

Assigning text shapes to photos

Assigning text shapes to photos

Photos to go with the text shapes

Photos to go with the text shapes

Laying the text shapes and photos out on a book back

Laying the text shapes and photos out on a book back

Testing the photos on the book back

Testing the photos on the book back

In the coming days I will be showing you how I am making this book come together.  Using chipboard to mount all the elements and create the book back and front.  I have yet to decide if I want a gate fold front or just a single front piece.

I may be a bit sporadic in keeping up with this blog.  Joe has good days where I am at his mercy.  He has some projects he wants to do with some power tools and I get to be the one assembling these tools.

What the heck am I doing?

What the heck am I doing?

Assembling a Drill Press

Assembling a Drill Press

He can’t lift more than 4 pounds…..I, however, don’t have any such restrictions :/

Leslie

The definition of Insanity is…..

DOING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER EXPECTING DIFFERENT RESULTS!

After having been successful in making the file folder box I figured it would be a snap to reduce the size to make a box to hold greeting cards and a smaller box to hold index cards for the way too many Internet sites and passwords I have and can’t seem to remember.

Two attempts were made to create a box that measures 6-3/8 inches wide by 4-3/4 inches tall and 1-1/2 inches deep, with a flap.

Two attempts to make the same box

Two attempts to make the same box

I gave up on the greeting card boxes because they were just way too wonky and I didn’t like the way they were coming together.

The next box I began was for an even smaller version of these two boxes.  Yep.  If you can’t figure out how to make something one size it is always worth while to go SMALLER :/

What the heck was I thinking?!

Smaller box

Smaller box

These boxes made from cardboard are quite thick.  They are very sturdy and can be used for heavy objects.  The only problem is they are too thick, clumsy, and labor intensive.  Mass producing these boxes would take quite a lot of time.

To decrease the bulk of the boxes I decided to give chipboard a try.  One 8-1/2 x 11 inch piece of chipboard will ALMOST make the greeting card box.  I had to get into my scrap pile for the extra chipboard for the lid and the flap.

You can see the measurements I have made on the chipboard….just in case you wish to make one of the greeting card boxes.

 

Measurements on sheet of chipboard

Measurements on sheet of chipboard

Measurements on scrap of chipboard

Measurements on scrap of chipboard

This is the order you would lay the pieces on the paper you choose to cover with.

Layout of pieces

Layout of pieces

This layout is too long for  a 12 x 12 sheet of scrapbook paper.  I had to use a bit of a matching paper for the lid and the flap.  That was a bug a boo to figure out  how to attach.

 

Attaching the lid and flap

Attaching the lid and flap

NOTE TO SELF:  Next time choose a paper with one design element featuring smaller images.

 

Attaching the lid and flap extension

Attaching the lid and flap extension

This is how the pieces will be laid out on the paper you choose.

Laid out on paper

Laid out on paper

When this box is finished it will hold 10 greeting cards with envelopes.

Holds 10 cards with envelopes

Holds 10 cards with envelopes

Magnets - they will be the death of me

Magnets – they will be the death of me

The extension

The extension

After battling the greeting card box, and having a little more success….I’m still not totally thrilled with how it has come out.  Especially the flippin’ MAGNETS!  I decided to turn my focus to the smaller box for the Internet passwords.

This box will use a half sheet of 8-1/2 x 11 chipboard.  The measurements are shown below.  Please note the change to three of the measurements.  Don’t ask me where my head was during this process.  I don’t have a clue what I was thinking.

Measurements on chipboard

Measurements on chipboard

Lay the pieces out on the decorative paper of your choice in this layout.  When attaching the chipboard to the paper I moved it over to the right edge and in 3/4 of an inch.

 

Laid out on paper

Laid out on paper

When completed, this box has thinner edges than the cardboard, which I was happier with.  The box itself was more square and less wonky.

 

Cardboard and chipboard comparison

Cardboard and chipboard comparison

The index cards for the Internet site and password file are 2-1/2 inches by 3 inches.  I found these at my local office supply store.

Index cards

Index cards

I will not be doing a full fledged tutorial on the construction of these boxes UNTIL I get the blasted things figured out.  I don’t like the side flaps showing on the front of the box.  Might as well have a “Mickey Mouse” image on this box.

Box with index cards

Box with index cards

Yes, and you can totally forget about the addition of any MAGNETS to close the box with.  I think I will be going back to my old friend – Velcro.  Velcro loves me and I love it back.

Here is a sample of how to use the index cards for the passwords.

 

Index card ready for info

Index card ready for info

I think I’m going to find something mindless to do for the next few hours.  My brain hurts :/

Go, “Show someone how special they are”.

Leslie

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