Gift Journal Tutorial & gift wrap – Michaels Makers

December 1st, 2014

theprojectgirl-journal-tutorial

For the Michaels Makers Challenge this month, I was asked to make a creative gift and custom gift-wrap.

For my gift, I decided to create some sewn journals. These are an easy and inexpensive gift, and they also make great stocking stuffers.

I ended up making 5 journals for this gift, but a set of 3 is pretty standard, or just one with a ribbon and a pen is still a great gift.

theprojectgirl-journal-set

Supplies:

Paper Pad (the one I used is only $5 today! And you can make up to 48 Journals with it!)

Straight Edge

Xacto Knife

Cutting Mat

Letter Paper

Basic Sewing Machine

Bone Folder

Step 1: Cut your cover to size. I used full-sized letter paper (8.5×11) and placed it on a 12×12 sheet of paper that I had cut down to 8.5″ leaving the width 12″. I used 12 sheets of paper – this will create 24 papers, and 48 pages (back and front).
theprojectgirl-journal-inside

Step 2: Fold and sew. The way that I do this is to fold the cover sheet ONLY, crease the fold and then unfold. This gives you a guide for sewing. Then place the papers centered on the fold, and sew up the middle.
theprojectgirl-journal-sewingmachine

The end result will look like this. theprojectgirl-journal-spine

Step 3: Use a bone folder to crease the spine. I can’t think of a single tool that does this job as well as a bone folder. I’ve had this one since my bookbinding days at college. Definitely a great investment!theprojectgirl-journal-fold

Step 4: Trim. Once your spine is folded. You’ll need to use a NEW xacto blade to trim ALL of the edges. Place your straight edge firmly where you want to cut, and then use the xacto knife with medium force to slice through all your pages. You may need to cut more than once, thats okay. Better to cut a few times with medium force, than to hit it with full force and ruin the edge. theprojectgirl-journal-cut

Trim the top, bottom, and side for a perfectly-edged journal.theprojectgirl-journal-cut-close

Step 5: Repeat for as many journals as you want to make!

theprojectgirl-journal-set-all

For the wrapping part of this project, I wanted to create a box that perfectly fit the journals. I did this by hand, but you could use a Cricut Explore (that cuts and scores in the same pass!).

Supplies:

Thin Chipboard

Ruler

Xacto Knife

Cutting Mat

 Scissors

Ad tech Permanent Glue Runner

Ad tech Hi Temp Glue Gun

Step 1: Measure your journals to get the finished size of the box. Mine was 8″ x 5″. Then add on the height of the stack of journals. Mine was about 1″. You’ll have to add the height measurement to each side of your original rectangle. Then if you desire, you can add another .5″ to fold back over so that you don’t have raw edges on the final box.

Step 2: Use a bone folder to score all of these folds. Then use scissors (or xacto knife) to trim around edges, and cut out flaps like this:
theprojectgirl-giftbox-glue

Step 3: Fold box along all score marks, glue tabs with a glue runner, and then glue the flaps and fold into place.

Step 4: Cut a cigar band to hold the journals together, and tie a ribbon around them. Then place inside the box. theprojectgirl-gift-box-open

Step 5: Measure the size of the top of the box using the bottom of the box as a guide. Add about 1/8″ total for the top to fit on the bottom. Cut glitter card stock and score.theprojectgirl-gift-box-glue

Step 6: Cut flaps, fold all scores, and use a hot glue gun to glue flaps in place.
theprojectgirl-glitter-gift-box

Step 7: Put top box onto bottom box, and tie with ribbon, and embellish with ribbons, wood veneer tags, and a stem.
theprojectgirl-glitter-gift-

theprojectgirl-glitter-gift-close

theprojectgirl-journal-giftwrap

Check out the other Michaels Makers this month:

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*This post contains affiliate links. Product for this project was provided by Michaels Craft Stores

Let it Snow Glitter Banner – Christmas Tree Decor

November 30th, 2014

michaels dream tree challenge

I created those adorable Let it Snow banners for my Michaels Dream Tree this year. I’ve had quite a few people ask about how I made them so I put together this quick tutorial. They are really easy to make if you have the new Cricut Explore which cuts glitter cardstock like it’s well, regular card stock.

Supplies:

Cricut Explore

White paper –  12″x18″

Large Cricut Mat

Cricut Deep Cut Blade

Glitter Cardstock

Ad tech Permanent Glue Runner

Step 1: Use Cricut and Large Cricut Mat to cut banners. Mine are 3.75×17.5. You can also cut these by hand because they are such a simple shape.

theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-banner

I get 3 banners from one sheet of 12×18 paper. theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-bannercut

Step 2: Lay out your phrase in Cricut Design Space to fit on your mat size. You can cut any of your own fonts. Just make sure they are sized to fit your banner. My phrase is 14″ long.
theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-designspace

Step 3 Cut glitter card stock. I use my deep-cut blade, but I’ve never tried it any other way, so you may be able to use a regular blade. theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-glittert

The glitter card stock cuts perfectly every single time, even in the tiny detail areas. theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-cut

Step 4 Apply glue to the back of the phrase. I use the Ad tech Permanent Glue runner because I like how the adhesive just adheres to where the paper is. theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-glue

Step 5 Stick the phrase on the paper banners!

theprojectgirl-letitsnow-banner-close

And then just decorate your tree!

jenallyson-letitsnow-christmastree2

jenallyson-letitsnow-decorating-tips

Thanksgiving Chalkboard Placecards made with Coasters

November 26th, 2014

theprojectgirl-placecard-words

These chalkboard place cards are super easy to create. I found chalkboard coasters at Michaels and knew right away they would make the perfect placecards for my thanksgiving table.

Supplies

Chalkboard Coasters (I found these at my local Michaels)

Mini Wood Spool

Chalk

Ad Tech Hi-temp Glue Gun

theprojectgirl-placecard-supplies

Basically you just need to glue the spools to the back of the coasters. I HIGHLY recommend a full-format high-temperature glue gun like this one from Ad tech. If you don’t have one, you should definitely get one. It has quickly become my favorite crafting tool. You have to be a little more careful with high-temp, but it adheres to pretty much everything, but you get less strings, and you have a few more seconds to reposition items before the glue hardens.

theprojectgirl-placecard-gluegun

Glue on one mini spool to each corner…

theprojectgirl-placecard-spools

Your place cards will stand up just perfectly, and all you have to do is write names on them!

theprojectgirl-placecard-spool

theprojectgirl-placecard

 

 

I also found cute chalk banners at Micheals and just had to get them. I love a few little chalk accents in my fall decor.  Also did you spy my burlap placemat?

theprojectgirl-banner-coasters

If you don’t want to glue spools to the backs, you can just leave the coasters flat and prop them against other decor on the table. You could also turn these into a banner by stringing them and writing what everyone is thankful for etc. So many possibilities!