My DIY Traveler’s Notebook

Most people who are in the arts and crafts or planner worlds know what a traveler’s notebook is. There are tons of videos and blog posts about how to set up your TN (traveler’s notebook). And what you use them for is only limited by your imagination. I have watched many YouTube videos showing pretty TNs filled with TN inserts and paraphernalia all which add up to the cost of a new car! I’m not kidding, the bare bones TNs, without inserts, sell from $30.00-$70.00. Yeah, I’m so not cool with that.

So I decided to make my own TN. Basically all they are is a piece of leather or vinyl and some elastic cord. So how hard could it be to make my own? Not hard at all. I used two pieces of sample vinyl wallpapers from one of those huge sample books. First I glued them backsides together so I have a pretty cover and inside. Then I followed a video detailing how to attach the elastic pieces. 

This is what my bare bones TN looks like.

Okay, I know it doesn’t look great yet, but that is because I haven’t worked on any of the pages inside.

I am using my TN as a prayer and Scripture book. But if that’s not your thing, you can use them as day planners, art journals, junk journals, glue books, etc…

Here are some of the pages I’ve made for my journal. As my prayers are private, I photographed these pages before I wrote my prayers on them.

Traveler’s notebooks, however you deem to use them, are a great way to use your creativity as well as use your stash!

If you don’t already have a TN, check out some videos about them. I bet you’ll get hooked just like I did!

Happy Mail From Betsy Doodle!

I was blessed this week to receive a package of wonderful handmade items from Dee Webster, otherwise known as Betsy Doodle on YouTube. Dee generously gave away a few extra prizes after her “hand of friendship and card for Mr. Doodle” challenge. I am so thrilled I won because she is such a talented lady. Here are the items I received all the way from Lincolnshire, England.

Look at this pile of art supply goodness!

Here are some wonderful napkins to decoupage with. Being that I am originally from England myself, I’m partial to the Union Jack napkin!

Dee’s hand-made painty papers are to die for. I will share the projects I use these in if I decide to take them out of the hoard vault!!!

A large and small pocket folder, ATC, tickets and some marbled papers. I’m swooning. 

I just love this prize and promise to use the items after I’ve enjoyed just looking at them long enough. If you’ve never watched Dee’s YouTube channel, do yourself a favor and check it out. I guarantee that after watching a video or two you’ll be hooked like I was. 

The link to her channel is:

https://www.youtube.com/user/BettsyDoodle/videos

Thank you again Dee for such a lovely surprise and thank you all for letting me gush about it!

Great Junk Journal Fodder Haul

I have already started making junk journals and such for the upcoming Christmas season. Although I really don’t need a lot of ephemera to make new journals, I did want to beef up my stash a little bit. So I picked up some really cool stuff in the last couple of weeks and wanted to share it with you. So without any further ado, here’s the stuff I hauled.

Cool old books and magazines. The pictures in these books are fantastic!

More vintage books with great graphics.

This book is not that old but…

the inside is chock full of vintage street signs. These will also be great to use in my mixed media projects or as embellishments in my journals!

Two more vintage cookbooks, but check out the insides of these…

great pages for journaling. The top one gets extra points because it’s a binder!

Vintage wrapping papers and tissue papers, because the one huge box I already  have is apparently not enough! Again, these can be used in junk journals or in mixed media.

Vintage kitchen labels, a note pad and vintage sewing supplies. These are great additions to junk journals.

A box crammed full of vintage matchbooks. The matches have already been taken out so these will make great tags and embellishments for my journals. This photo doesn’t show the quantity too well but there are at least 250-300 old matchbooks here!

And lastly, a yummy box of old ephemera. There are all kinds of receipts in this lot. Also included were some cards of vintage rickrack and some old pens, some of which are fountain pens.

So all in all, I feel well stocked for a while and am ready to get on with making the journals. If I remember, I’ll show you some of the finished ones. 

It gives me a great feeling to know I can reuse these old treasures to make journals and mixed media projects people will enjoy. Recycling is always a win-win situation!

 

 

 

Fun DIY Stickers

Okay, I know this is probably not a new idea, but this is the first time I actually tried making my own stickers. You can use any pre-made sticker blanks, varying the sizes and shapes to fit your projects. I used these round printable ones I got from The Dollar Tree.

I watched some videos on YouTube for inspiration. I used paints, sprays, stamps and ink, scraps of decorative papers, sequins and even tiny alphabet and word stickers to decorate the sticker blanks.

Here are some of the stickers I made.

Stickers, in general, are really inexpensive to buy. As an artist, I like to create as much of my own projects from scratch as I can, instead of relying on store-bought items. If you want specialty stickers, like inspirational ones, they are really quite expensive. Making your own allows you to customize them to fit every project perfectly while being unique and inexpensive!

P.S. Here are some laminated mixed media bookmarks I also made.

99 Cent Art

Last year when I was still permitting myself to buy art supplies, I ran across this little mixed media kit at Tuesday Morning. As you can see, the kit only cost me 99 cents.

I came across the kit again as I was tidying up my craft room and decided it was time to do something with it.

Here are the contents of the kit.

Because the pieces are so small, they lent themselves well to making Artist Trading Cards (ATCs). Here are the ATCs I made.

Besides the cardboard used for the 2 1/2″ x 3 1/2″ bases, the only other items I used from my stash were rhinestones, brads, a few pieces of washi tape and of course, glitter glue! I hated the color of the bright green corrugated cardboard so I flipped it over and used the backside. 

Challenging myself to use up some of my stash is always so much fun. These little ATCs took me no time at all and I used most of the elements in the kit. Why don’t you pull out 15-20 pieces of bits and bobs from your own stash and make your own kits to use and give away to your artsy friends. It’s a good way to use up older supplies and is guaranteed to spark some creative genius!!!

 

My Hand Of Friendship

I decided to enter another crafting challenge. This one is being held by Dee known as BetsyDoodle on YouTube. Her challenge involves two parts. 

The first part is to make a 60th birthday card for her husband Richard whose birthday is in May. She gave us a list of things he’s interested in. Fishing is something he loves to do. Here is the card I made for his birthday.

The cards are a surprise for him. He has no idea Dee has asked us to make them for him!

The second part of the challenge was to make her a hand of friendship for her birthday, which is also in May. Unfortunately I forgot to take pictures of my entry before I sent it to the UK. Fortunately, Dee is making videos of all the entries as she receives them. Here is the link to the video showing my hand of friendship.

It was a lot of fun making this hand of friendship. It’s amazing how different each entry has been. If you’ve never made one, give it a try. I know you will have fun with this project!

End Of An Era

Moss Cottage Vintage has just gone through a major change. Due to the sluggish economy these last years, I have felt that my profit margin at the Fredericksburg Antique Mall isn’t were it should be. I am doing well on Etsy, but that is because my overhead is so low.

I like having a space in the mall because I like to “play” at displaying my items. But the space I was in was just too big and too expensive to make it worth my while. 

So, out with the old…

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And in with the new!

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I love my new space! It’s surprising how much stuff I was able to fit in there and my sales have already increased!!! If you come to the Fredericksburg Antique Mall, my booth is the third one on the left on the ground floor, right before you go into the back section. Send me a message if you are coming and I’ll try to meet you there.

Now onto some arts and crafts. Here are two cards I made recently. One for my nieces 16th birthday (she loves anything Tudor) and one for a gentlemen who loves fishing.

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Well, that’s all I’ve got for now. Moving the shop was quite a big ordeal and I’m also busy with some household renovation projects. I hope I’ll have a chance to “art” again soon.