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!
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:
Thank you again Dee for such a lovely surprise and thank you all for letting me gush about it!
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!
During the months leading up to Christmas I am busy crafting for my shows. I don’t get any time to “play” with my paints, sprays, pens, etc… Now that the holidays are over, I’ve had some time to get back to mixed media. Here are a few of the projects I’ve finished.
I had a lot of fun layering and layering. I hope you like these pieces. I’m finishing up a couple more and will share them when they’re done.
Make some time during this “down time” and yucky weather to get out your paints and play!
Every once in a while I get the urge to make a project just using the junk that is
cluttering up on my desk. I decided to make an ATC sized magnet so I could reuse the magnet strip off list pad I had just finished up. I always have varying sizes of cardboard on my desk so that was a no-brainer for the substrate.
I opened a new bottle of gesso and an obscene amount poured out onto my little ATC. I was actually able to gesso 2 – 8 x 10 canvas boards, 2 – 5 x 5 stretched canvases, 1 – 6 x 8 canvas board and my ATC with that huge puddle!
Next, I painted on some cream and brown acrylic paints to give it a vintage feel.
This very blurry picture shows some eggs I cut from some scrapbook paper. I inked the edges with distress ink before decoupaging them onto the card.
Here is the “finished ATC”. It’s really simple, but it gives me that old field guide feeling.
I painted the back of the card the same color blue I spattered on the eggs and attached the magnet strip from the used up note pad.
I like how the ATC magnet came out, but I just needed to add one more touch to make me love it.
Yep, you guessed it. I added glitter to the butterfly’s wings. NOW it’s done and I do love it! I hope you like it too and that it inspires you to make your own little work of art with things that are already on your desk!
I have been watching some videos by Marta from Maremi SmallArt on YouTube. She is one talented lady! She does amazing mixed media as well as paper projects like cards. One video in particular got my creative juices flowing. In this video, Marta made Shabby Chic vintage style cards. The link to the video is:
Instead of making cards, however, I was inspired to make some tags using her techniques.
First I cut some tag shapes out of cardboard. I just free-handed these.
Then I added a layer of texture using decoupage paper, drywall tape and old book pages stuck on with Gesso.
For my first tag I used my Prima Princess paper collection and embellishments.
For the second tag I used some specialty papers and some papers from the Market Street collection by My Mind’s Eye.
For the third tag I used paper from Tim Holtz and My Mind’s Eye, however, I forgot to take a picture of the papers used. Sorry!
Here are the three tags I made.
I love how they turned out. There is so much layering on each one so the dimension is quite thick.
If you find yourself in a rut or just need a little inspiration. Go to Marta’s YouTube channel, Maremi SmallArt. I know you will find some videos to jump-start your art mojo!
Thank you Marta for all of your videos, including the “Break a blank page” series!
I purchased this ugly metal match box holder a couple of weeks ago because I thought the shape was really nice. The flower cart picture on the front, not so much.
The bottom needed help too!
I decoupaged some scrapbook paper on the front and the bottom.
I attached an old piece of broken jewelry on the front to add some bling. Now it is worthy to sit on a desk and hold pens, pencils and “old lady eyes”.
It can also hang on a wall. There are many things (including a match box) that you can corral in this up-cycled holder!
It was a quick and easy re-do that saved this vintage piece from going to the junk yard! It is now available at Moss Cottage Vintage in Fredericksburg, Virginia.