Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Crafting 101

Altering composition books is crafting 101. It's one of the basic projects that requires minimal tools or skills and yet it's one I come back to again and again. Why?
* Composition books are about 10-20 cents a piece during school supply season Cha-Ching!
* They're tough enough to withstand a lot of abuse.
* Way better than having dozens of post-it notes hanging around
* They make great gifts.
* You know that paper that's too pretty to cut into? - This gives it a nice, long, happy life.

My DH switched to using composition books for work to keep track of notes, to do lists etc. He's a hard core techie, iPhone loving gadget guy but his composition book never leaves his side. They really are awesome tools.

But they look so boring.

All I do is ink the spine side edges of decorative paper and then attach it to the cover (ATG is my fave but any adhesive all the way down to glue stick works fine.) Then burnish the paper down thoroughly. Use a brayer, use a spoon - just do it. Trim excess paper with an exacto knife and then file the edges smooth. If you are so inclined, ink the three outside edges and you're done. The binding on composition books is typically very uneven. When it's too much to ignore, I cover the seam with a piece of ribbon. In the case of Chris's new purple skull notebook I had to do this.

Tip: Did you know that the back of printed grosgrain ribbon is solid colored and just as textured? Obvious right? Not to me. I was bemoaning the fact that the only black ribbon in the house was a very girlie polka dot and then it hit me to check the back.

Chris's Notebook (with ribbon seam correction):

This is what is left from a sheet of 12x12 paper:

This paper was so cute I was saving it for something special. I thought my budget/financial planning notebook was a deserving spot:

But I only had one piece of paper and didn't want to put something different on the back. I cut the top strip off and layered them to form the back cover in two pieces. This only works with some patterns, but it's worth a try. Here's mine:

Budget News: In 48 Hours I've trimmed $300 from our expenses - YAHOO - and set two of our variable bills to equal pay. Equal pay is the coolest thing ever. Especially when you live in a crazy climate and your power bill can swing as much as $300 from one month to the next. We are also refinancing our house tonight from a variable rate mortgage to a fixed one with a lower interest rate. How awesome is that?

I have so little control over my health and the things that are happening, it's wonderful to be gaining control in this area of our life.


take a little piece of my art said...

Congrats on the $$$ trimming! You've inspired me to create a budget of my own. I really need to!!

MaryC said...

I love making these things. So good of you to remind us how much fun and how useful they are.
Happy to hear that you are doing some positive things to add happiness and harmony to your life. We are trying to do that too.
Blessings my friend,

Jennifer said...

LOVE them!!! AND...LOVE the new(er) blog header banner!!!! :P

Anonymous said...

$300!!! CONGRATS :) My hubby would love you! I love your notebooks!

GlitteryKatie said...