Altered Paper Clips

My last post showed the basic set up for my December Daily for this year. I have been faithful in documenting the days although the beginning of December isn’t quite as exciting as the middle and end of the month will be. One thing I use to embellish my pages is altered paper clips. Here is how I make mine.

Basic paper clips

Get paper clips of any size or color. I get mine at the Dollar Tree. You can use clips that match the colors and size of your journal.

Box of scraps and Christmas ephemera

 

More scraps and ephemera

Get out some scrap papers and ephemera that match the style and colors of your December Daily pages. I have so much scrap Christmas paper and ephemera I could not possibly live long enough to use it all! I stopped with just two boxes for this project so I wouldn’t get overwhelmed with choices.

Cut paper into banner shapes

Measure the length of your paper clips and cut strips of decorative papers a little narrower. I like to cut my ends into a fishtail shape but you could leave them squared off or cut them in a triangular banner shape.

layer papers

On this clip I layered my papers after cutting them different lengths. On some other clips I just used one strip of paper. Thread them through the long side of the paper clip and glue all the pieces together. Be careful of the orientation of your clip making sure it will slide onto the page the direction you want it to go.

Add fibers

If you want to add fibers, trims or ribbons it’s best to staple them onto the banner before adding your ephemera. I do this to make sure my fibers are going to stay put.

These are all finished paper clips I made. I used a variety of ephemera, fibers, rhinestones, liquid pearls, charms and of course, glitter, to make each one unique. 

Clip on page

Here is one of my altered paper clips on a page in my December Daily. These embellishments are so easy to make and are a good way to use up some of your scraps. You can make them in any style and use them in all of your journal projects.

So get out your remnants and work on turning a humble paper clip into a little work of art!

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Getting My 2018 December Daily Ready

This is my sixth year keeping a December Daily. I have written posts about some of my previous December Dailies in the past but this is a new Christmas to document and I’m as excited as ever. Here are just a few quick pictures of my set-up. 

Decorating the cover

I usually use old book covers for my December Dailies. The cute snowman image is a piece of a Christmas napkin I decoupaged to the front cover. If you want to decoupage a light-colored napkin, tissue paper or thin paper on a dark background you may want to paint a layer of white underneath. If I hadn’t painted white underneath this napkin I would have ended up with a light green snowman. I just painted a section white and dabbed the edges to soften them and somehow it just looks like snow around the snowman. Of course I added chunky glitter to make my snowman glittery!

Select assorted papers

I selected about forty assorted pieces of paper for the pages. Not all are scrapbook paper however, some are vintage Christmas cards, envelopes, Christmas book pages, Christmas carol pages, old advertisements, etc.. I like to document my entire December and not just through Christmas day. I’ve made sure I have enough “pages” to have at least one a day. Sometimes I may use two pages for one day if a lot was going on and some days I may only use one side of a page. If I don’t have enough pages I can always add more and if I have too many I can take some out.

Arrange papers

After I’ve picked the papers I want to use, I spread them all out on the dining room table and then put them together in an order that is pleasing to me. When arranging the pages I consider color, size and type (such as book page or Christmas card) so I don’t have two of the same type near each other. I make sure my nativity pages are approximately around the 24th of December. I can always fine tune the location of pages as I go along. 

Add a place to stash goodies

I like to attach a small decorative paper bag to the inside of the back cover. That gives me a place to stash embellishments I want to use in the journal. When my journal is completed the bag gives me a place to put items I want to keep that didn’t make it onto a page.

Add binding of some type

I use O rings to keep my journal together. They allow me to make my journals good and chunky and give me the freedom to add or take out pages as needed. Sometimes I will remove a page to work on it if I’m going to use wet mediums like paint or spray ink.

So now that I’ve shown you my “naked” December Daily, I hope to post throughout the month and give you ideas and hacks for ways to embellish your own journal. Just keep in mind the rules for keeping a December Daily:

  1. There are NO rules
  2. Don’t stress if you can’t do it everyday. Maybe just keep track of the highlights
  3. There is no right or wrong way to keep a December Daily
  4. Don’t compare your journal with anyone else’s journal
  5. HAVE FUN!!!

Altered Tickets

I decided to get out my ticket punch that I bought a couple of years ago but had never really used. I was inspired by some YouTube videos about altering tickets and making ticket paper clips. I think it’s also a wonderful way to use up long pieces of scrap paper.

This is my Little B brand ticket punch that I purchased at Tuesday Morning eons ago. I have tons of these paper strips leftover from making junk journals.

These are the “naked” ticket strips punched from various papers.

These are some altered ticket strips with flowers, washi tape, gems and words. I can add a whole strip to a project like a junk journal, or tear off one piece to use as a smaller embellishment on a card or ATC. 

These tickets have a paper clip sandwiched between the pieces so they can clip onto projects and journal pages. I glued some tiny pieces of torn paper on each ticket before I glued them to the bottom ticket and paper clip.

These are my finished paper clips. I added stickers, stamping, flowers and words. 

Altering tickets is really fun and easy as they are tiny little substrates. If you don’t have a ticket punch you can purchase raffle tickets at the Dollar Tree and alter them. Use paints and paper to cover up the printed background. 

Make some ticket strips or ticket paper clips and use up some of your smaller craft supplies. Altered tickets are small but can make a big impact on your projects!

.

Cutest Craft Supply Haul Ever!

So far this year I have been pretty good about not spending lots of money on craft supplies. Well, we all know that all good things must come to an end right? That being said, I did spend some money on a recent online craft  supply haul, however, I only ordered things I knew I would use.

My downfall came when I opened and read the email sales ad from Yozo Craft. They sell all kinds of Japanese craft and planner supplies and stationary items at ridiculously low prices. Usually I just delete the emails but for some reason, this time I looked at the email. I was hooked all over again and as I had ordered from them before, I knew I could trust the quality of their products. 

So without any further ado here are the items I purchased from Yozo Craft.

This is what I saw when I opened my box of crafting goodness! Even the packaging for each item is drool worthy.

These are little pads of post-it notes. I don’t know how you are supposed to write on them, but I got them just to use as decoration in my journals or to decoupage on mixed media projects.

This is absolutely the cutest owl stamp ever! No need to explain why I bought it.

 

This is a box of 30 bird shaped die cut bookmarks. They are made of heavy duty card stock and are really durable. They even have lines for the title of the book you’re reading and notes you may want to write down. I will use these in my Bible, journals and other books.

This is a box of 30 feather shaped bookmarks. They are made by the same company as the bird bookmarks and are of the same quality. I bought these to use in mixed media art and junk journals as tags, not necessarily as bookmarks.

This is a pack of 32 pieces of paper memo notes. Look at the great designs. These will be used for mixed media and junk journals, not as memo notes.

This is another pack of 32 memo notes. I love the water color effects. I actually bought these as a sample of what I can create myself with watercolor paints. These little notes will be great for ATCs and junk journals.

Three packs of colored flower stickers for my journals. I’ve taken a shine to nature style journals lately and thought these would work well in them.

Really cute and fun stickers because who doesn’t love stickers?

More cute and fun stickers. Look at the cat ones! How cute are they?

And more stickers. I love them all, but the feathers and Kokeshi dolls are so fun.

Who could order Japanese craft items without getting washi tape? Not me, that’s for sure. There are little deer, butterflies, birds, owls, Russian nesting dolls, flowers and all the days of the week. These can all be used in my journals and mixed media.

Yep, more washi tape. These have Kokeshi dolls on them and you’re not going to find any like this at Joann or Michael’s.

I super happy with my order from Yozocraft.com and will be ordering from them again. I encourage you to check out their website and see all the great things they have. Just be aware that their website does not hold items in your cart if you leave the site without paying. I learned the hard way when I had to try recreate what I wanted to buy the first time around. The second thing to be aware of is the shipping can take from 3-4 weeks to get here. I’m okay with the wait and it was like Christmas when my box came in about 3 1/2 weeks. 

I really try to buy American made products when I can but I haven’t found such well made and unusual items here in the U.S..

I hope you check them out and find some crafting goodness of your own!

 

 

Burlap Heart Embellishments

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, I decided to make heart embellishments out of burlap. The process was really easy, but I think they came out really well. Here’s the simple process.

Cut some ordinary burlap into smallish pieces. The bigger ones in the picture above measure about 6″ square.

I painted the burlap for interest as well as to keep it from fraying when I cut it into smaller shapes.

I cut the fabric into heart shapes. Some were cut with a die and others I free-handed.

Here’s the fun part! I took out a lot of my Valentine’s Day stickers, bling and graphics. I also took out some sequins and plastic flowers.

Here’s the finished heart embellishments.

I will use these little embellishments on cards, tags or gift bag toppers. I hope this has inspired you to get out some of that plain old burlap you have lying around and make some fun embellishments!

My Mini Mixed Media Morsel Tiles

I am very busy working on our house as well as making items for the Spring Vintage Home Market. This allows very little time for me to make larger mixed media projects. I decided to follow along with the projects Cat Hand teaches in her Mixed Media Morsels Dessert videos on YouTube. They are smaller projects that are completed fairly quickly. And if you haven’t seen any of Cat Hand’s videos, you need to check her out. She is an amazingly creative lady.

She has only posted one video in this series so far. Here is the link:

Here are photos of my projects using her steps. 

I used Tim Holtz grunge board pieces for my substrate as I did not have any wood pieces. I wanted my backgrounds fairly neutral so for most of the tiles I used vintage book papers and sheet music. For two of the tiles I used colored scrapbook papers.

I simply decoupaged the pieces of paper randomly onto the tiles.

I stamped some small images onto white tissue paper.

Then I decoupaged the tissue paper to the tiles. The white tissue paper almost disappears when it’s been decoupaged down.

Next I added color using my Faber-Castell Pitt pens. 

I edged the tiles with black to make the colors pop. Finally I added words and a little bling to each tile. Here are some closer pictures of the tiles.

If you are looking for something fun and creative to do this year, why don’t you try making some mixed media morsels. Cat Hand explains and demonstrates every step of her projects making them perfect for mixed media beginners and pros alike!

Finished 2017 December Daily

Just a quick post to give you a glimpse at my finished December Daily for 2017. I must say I wasn’t really loving the bare book before December.

dd1

 

Now that it’s finished, however, I really love how it turned out. 

dd7

It’s a big, chunky monkey!

dd8

I didn’t add any charms or ribbon to the rings before December, but was able to get some cute things on during the month. The bells on the red elastic was a jingle bracelet I wore to Zumba for two weeks!

Here are some random pages from my December Daily.

dd10dd11dd12dd13dd14dd15dd16dd9

As you can see, I do not use photos in my journals. This is partly due to the fact that I don’t take a lot of pictures and partly because there is already so much cute ephemera out there to fill the pages. 

I have been doing December Dailies for quite a few years now, and I must say that this year it was a real pleasure to work on it. I took a few minutes out of each day and recorded the events of the previous day. I was completely finished by New Year’s Day. 

If you have never kept a December Daily before, I urge you to give it a try in 2018. There is nothing quite as fun as pulling journals out from previous years and reliving the wonderful Christmas memories!