19 July 2014

Heavy Weight

A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon this website for a book weight.
 http://lifehacker.com/5833754/make-your-own-super-cheap-book-weight-out-of-duct-tape-and-pennieshttp://lifehacker.com/5833754/make-your-own-super-cheap-book-weight-out-of-duct-tape-and-pennies
What a brilliant idea!  Wish I had thought of it myself.  I liked the idea, but not the construction.  It is perfectly fine, just not my style. So I decided to lift the idea and change it to form my own style. 

I am a paper person, as you know so I wanted to construct this using paper.  You know me, I also wanted to add my own "michelle" to it.  I started with 2 strips of  8x2.5 sheet of cardstock (what a perfect use for scraps!!).  I set them aside.  I took a strip of duct tape and laid out my pennies.  I used 20 pennies.  On the each end I added 4 pennies on top to add a little weight. I used the duct tape to hold all this in place.
























I then took one of the 2 strips (right side down) and glued the duct tape piece to the strip. I used Scrappy Glue by Heidi Swapp.  So far I have found this to be a very good glue for holding heavy things to my projects. After adhering that strip I placed the second strip on top and glued it to the top of the duct tape stuff.  I used binder clips  all around to hold in place(you can never have too many binder clips on hand when you construct things from paper). Let this set up a bit and after about 10 minutes remove the clips. It may tear some of the paper, but you can distress over this...no big deal.

If there are any gaps I use Aleene's tacky glue and put some into the gaps.  Clip again and let set a few minutes.
















Now take all the clips off (if you have not all ready) and let dry for about an hour.  Distress the base if you desire after that hour is over.  Then decorate the top as you desire. 








Once, everything is dry, get yourself a good book and test it out.  Now you can cook and not worry about the book closing or you can read your favorite book and not worry about losing your place. 



01 June 2014

Tim Holtz Configuration box for my dear friend


I had this configurations box and I wanted to make it for my friend DiAnna. I wasn't really sure what to do.  I first found some paper that I loved and covered it in that paper. I used the Blue Awning by K&Co.  I completely covered each little box, then the big box as well.

 I thought about her personality and she loves BOOKS. I mean she loves them like I love them.  I thought it would be nice to make her some books. I covered the books in Pocket Full of Posies paper by DCWV.  It was sturdy and also colorful.  The inside of each book has paper with words, actually each one has it's pages made from an old Bible that fell apart (again that is perfect for DiAnna).  I put the books together, did the binding, then inked the outside with Walnut Stain by Tim Holtz.  I glued the books in a couple of the cubes.



When I asked DiAnna what she would like, she wanted a chair and a sofa to go in her library.  I had nothing in miniature, so I had to make it.  I started with a sheet of cardboard.  I cut out the sides, the chair seat, the rungs and the back of a wooden chair.
I put it all together using Aleene's glue, hot glue and mod podge.  It took a long time to make it all work but it did.  The couch was going to be a challenge, but I was up to the challenge.  I once again, used cardboard for the back, the legs and the body of the couch.  The seat of the couch was made by rolling up paper for the cushion and using thin paper for the fabric.  I fixed it into place with mod podge.  Once it was dry, I gave it a little walnut stain inking.

I added some spools because DiAnna likes to sew, a canvas covered in paper because she likes to do mixed media canvas art, and some "art" for the back of some boxes.

I "framed" a portrait of a lady to hang on the "walls" and Dianna asked for a dress form and a globe.  The globe is made from a button and a stand I created from cardboard.  Like everything else, it was inked with walnut stain.  I created the land on the globe from green scrap paper.  The dress form was cut from a sizzix die that I own.  I cut 6 layers of dress form and glue them together to make this stand up.  I created a stand for it as well.  I added some basic grey pennants and more ink and it was finished.

Hope DiAnna likes it half as much as I enjoyed making it.

start of summer....

Summer vacation has started.  During the summer, I always make goals to accomplish a lot of stuff on my list.  This summer I plan to replace a board on my deck, to fix my kitchen sink (it's leaky), to make something for my soffit in my kitchen, to finish my decorating in my kitchen (I am working on a coffee theme), clean out the garage, touch up paint in the living room, make curtains for my bedroom, and organize my store room.  Most of these tasks are very inexpensive (like free---only my time is involved).

I have started the summer by creating some art.  My first work was this stained glass picture that I found on the internet. I used prisma color pencils.  There is green on her hair. It is not on the picture so it must have been on the camera lens.  This was placed in my art journal, which is an old hardback book.




























The next little painting is a canvas paper that I painted in many colors and then sprayed with my Michelle's Musings sprays.  I drew a girl on a sheet of mixed media paper and then painted her with water colors.  Once she was dry I cut her out and glued her onto the canvas.  I think she is pretty cool.











Next was a 6x6 canvas that I picked up at Dick Blick. I painted the background blue, and added a stencil wood icing letter thingy.  Then I added a doily that was done with Michelle's Musings sprays, some Graphic 45 papers, a die cut I made from my cricut (using Art Nouveau), a Fabulous metal piece that I have had for years, some pearls, a bingo chip, a tassel and a pebble.  Finally I finished it off with some glitter, just what my friend DiAnna loves.























The last thing I finished was a color book I made for a friend of mine.  She had a baby like 12 weeks ago, and I am just now finding time to finish this.  I made one of these for my daughter many years ago, she wore it out.  I redid it when Trevor came along and I got it out the other day and saw, he pretty much destroyed it too.  I hope this little guy likes it as much as they did. The first photo is the one I made for Braxton, the second photo is the one that my kids chewed to bits.  It won first place in the Arkansas State Fair with Hannah and the redid version won Best of Show at the McCracken County Fair.

13 April 2014

Meeting Jamie Ford

Jamie Ford is the author of "On the Corner of Bitter and Sweet" . I discovered him a few years ago from the McCracken County Library.  You see, I do choose books by their covers...and I saw the cover of the book and immediately checked it out from the library.  I instantly fell in love with the book.  As a matter of a fact, I got on google to see if Jamie Ford had written anything else. Nope, this was his first novel. First novel?  Wow!  What an accomplishment.  I followed him on Twitter and his blog.  I discovered that he was indeed about to have a second novel published.  So I waited.  During the wait, my friend DiAnna told me that there was a scheduled event in March of 2014 to meet Jamie. I quickly added it to my calendar and countdown app (an app that featured my trip to Hawaii and a cruise).

Eventually the release date was set and Jaime had an offer that if you bought the book from a presale (the written copy), he would send you a digital version.  No brainier there...sign me up. I received the digital book and thought it a wonderful accompaniment to Bitter and Sweet.  The wait ensued.


By reading Jamie's blog I learned that he prefer paper books to digital, so I was surprised he sent out a digital publication and decided to make a paper edition of his supplement.  My intention was to give it to him in March when I met him.  (I featured a tutorial on this book a while back....http://michelle-champion.blogspot.com/2014/03/saturday-afternoon-book-making.html).  Once the book was finished, I debated giving it to him.  I actually tossed the idea around for a while on would he care, would that be weird and all the other questions that weird fans would think of.

At last the day came...actually the day before the event. Jamie had to cancel due to a stupid snow storm.  For those of you that know me know that my husband is a meteorologist and this PROVES once and for all that husbands don't listen to their wives.  I begged and begged him to keep the storm away.  No such luck, the event was postponed.  I imagined I would never get to meet him.

But wait, last week Jamie posted on his blog that he was coming to KY. Not just KY, but Paducah.  This was it!  I was going to get to meet him and tell him how much I enjoyed his books.  Armed with a copy of Bitter and Sweet and Willow Frost, a copy of the digital publication and the book I made...I made my way to WKCTC.

I arrived early and there was a reception going on.  I saw him immediately.  I waited for a moment, texted my friend DiAnna that I was there and waited some more.  Then I decided to approach him.  I introduced myself and he was very familiar with who I was from my Twitter stalkings.  We chatted for a moment and a dude came up to him to get his books signed, the moment was gone to ask him about the book I had made.  I went inside the auditorium and got a seat in the front for both DiAnna and myself.  I saw him in the back of the room and grabbed my books and thought I would try again. We chatted again for another moment or two and he signed my books of Bitter and Sweet and Willow Frost.



DiAnna then arrived and the lecture began.  It was very informative.  Perfect for a book lover.  It was the first lecture I had ever attended on a book and it won't be my last.  During his talk, I learned he was not only a great author, but also witty and charming.  He has a lot of good stories in him.  I told my friend DiAnna his writings are so emotional that it is kind of rare for a guy to write like that where I am so moved by the words. I read LOTS of books.....most male authors (unless they write crime) cannot paint a picture with words.  He not only does so, but it's a lovely picture, even if the subject is unpleasant.  To me is astonishing that he only has two books under his belt.  He writes like a very seasoned author.  I'm excited to see how far he will go.  Oh, I got off topic, I just wanted you to know how much I enjoyed these books.














The lecture is over and he is going to sign books.  I got in the line to sign books and when it was my turn I laid down the book I had made.  He looked a bit surprised at what it was because it was something there is no way he could have seen because I am certain he does not follow my blog.  I explained that I knew he preferred paper books and when I got the digital book I felt it had to be in paper.  He said he had never seen it in paper.  I got a bit braver. I said, "I made it for you, but if you don't want it or are going to throw it away I want you to just sign it and I will keep it".  He said no he loved it and asked ME to SIGN it for him!  Then he told someone he wanted a photo of the two of us with the book that I had made for him.  What an honor!  I was so glad that I got the guts to give him the book.

What a wonderful evening it turned out to be.  And now that it is over I sit and wait for the next Jamie Ford novel.

Happy Reading!









02 March 2014

Keurig k cup gift box

I saw this on the internet, but there were no directions.  Never fear, I can figure it out.  I am going to do the best I can with directions.  The problem will be that I do NOT like to measure things, I rarely do, so often measurements are an afterthought.  I apologize for that, I just would rather eyeball it (I'm pretty accurate there, then measure).









First I made my triangle base. I did this by placing six k-cups in a triangle shape and then drew around it.  The top line is about 8 inches, the side 8.5, I warned you.










Next, I flipped the kcups over (top side down) and placed them where I wanted them in the final product...I drew around the lid of each one.  I took scissors and cut a tad inside this line.   I made sure the kcup would fit each hole.  Once I had those like I wanted them, I used a compass and made the circles perfect (I did not have any die or punch the right size or I would have used that).  Then I made a bottom for the box using the same triangle on no holes.







I took a pizza box and cut some sides.  They started out at the 8.5 and 8 inch long that I "measured" before and were 2 inches tall. I wanted the sides 1.5 that is why I chose 2 inches. I took my scoring board and scored .25 inch on each side of the strip making a lip.  I glued the sides to the bottom part of the box.  I did not have to alter my 8.5x2 or 8x2 strips at all!

I mod podged a triangle to the bottom of the inside of the box.  Then I cut strips of paper slightly less than 1.5 inches and covered the inside sides of the box.

I covered the top of the box with a sheet of paper, leaving about .25 inch hanging off so I could tuck it under and make a nice finish.  I used mod podge to adhere paper.  Once that dried I cut slits in the circles so I could tuck the paper on the underside of each circle for a better finish. I did not take a photo of this as it was too messy.  Once the top side was dry I adhered it to the bottom with sides piece.

I then took strips of paper and mod podged them unto anywhere where raw cardboard  or a rough edge was showing.

This took me about 2 hours start to finish. 















01 March 2014

A thing that makes me go hummmmmmm

I am an avid reader.  I mean,  I read all the time.  I read on a tablet, on my phone, and paper materials.  When you are constantly reading on an electronic device you use your battery (duh)....this will cause you to have to plug in your device to charge.  Now, I read while my device is charging...here's the part I don't understand.  Why does my iphone and my tablet (Samsung Galaxy Tab) have the charging port on the bottom?  When you read you hold the book in your lap, into your stomach, standing so you can see the page better....this is impossible is a charging cord is stuck in your belly.  What happens to your cord from this?  Oh, the cord gets a short in it causing you to have to purchase a new one.

I get that they do this for the charging stations, but why can't the port be in the side and the device charge sideways?  All of them have rotating screens so you can still use it on the station. What did you say?  Why can't I read sideways? I can, but it messes up the book "page". Have you tried it?  It's all funky. 

My solution to the problem is to always keep a paper book in my reading rotation so I can read paperwise while I am trying to charge.  

Just wondering and open to any of your opinions. 

Saturday afternoon book making

Tuesday night is a big evening for me.  Our local Community College is hosting an event where they are bringing in an author and letting him speak then sign autographs.  West Kentucky Community Technical College has done this before, but this is the first time I have longed to go.  It was almost a year ago that I read about the event and have counted down the days.

Who is coming to the little town of Paducah?  Why Jamie Ford.  You haven't heard of him?  Well, you need to google it right now.  Purchase the Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet first and you will be hooked.  There is a second novel entitled Songs of Willow Frost that I also recommend.

I discovered Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet not long after it was published.  I read it, reread it....well, I keep rereading it.  I have the ebook, but once I found out Jamie was coming to Paducah, I bought a paper copy as well.  I pre-purchased Songs of Willow Frost from BAM! and it was delivered to my house the day the book was released.  If you pre-purchased Songs, Jamie would email you a little "supplement" type/companion book written about one of the characters in Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet.  I read it when he emailed me, but decided that since I was going to meet him next week I would try to see if he would autograph my ebook too.


I printed the book in full form. It was rather large to bind, so I printed as a booklet.






I took a large sheet of mat board and cut me a couple of covers (8.5x6).  I covered each cover with one 12x12 scrapbook page (Bohemia by My Mind's Eye---the best paper pad EVER!!!).








 In the meantime I put together the booklet, scored the middle, and sewed the binding of the pages.  Once that was finished I inked the pages with Distress Ink by Tim Holtz (old paper and walnut stain).  I hot glued a ribbon to the "spine" of the booklet (gluing the booklet in the exact center of the ribbon).  Once the hot glue set up, I put a strip of hot glue on the inside edge of one of the covers and put the ribbon down on that side.  Once set I repeated the process with the other side of the ribbon and other cover.  The thickness of the book looks nice between the covers.  I mod podged the covers after adding some walnut stain ink to the edges.  I also mod podged the overleafs of the booklet to each cover giving it a finished look.

On the cover, I used Jamie's cover, but I ran out of color ink. I will reprint before Tuesday and mod podge the new photo onto the cover.

Not perfect but it's kind of like me...covered in flaws but handy.















05 February 2014

Throw out 50 things part 2

Given all the snow and the fact that we are snowed in....we were able to work on the Throw out 50 things list.

We finished with number 36 last time.  If you can't remember the post here is a link.


http://michelle-champion.blogspot.com/2013/12/throw-out-50-things.html


37.  Clothes the kids have outgrown

38.  My mother-in-laws comforter.  It is very nice, hardly used but it is very old lady looking and white.  I hate white.  It is white with pink flowers if someone wants it before I take it to goodwill

39.  Bent rails from Trevor's bed.  Trevor's mattress was constantly falling through the bed because the rails were bent when we got the bed (it was used).  We are selling Grandma's house and we sold all the furniture inside it.  Well most of the furniture.  For some reason the auction company did not sell the bed.  I took the rails from that bed and brought them home.  They fit Trevor's bed....no more falling through the frame!!  I am tired of having crappy stuff that is falling apart in my home.  My goal is to get rid of it if it is falling apart.

40.  Old letters from my mother-in-law to my husband.  They are miserable.  Please remember to talk to your children nicely.  I burned these horrible letters!!!

41.  Sunshades from our Sebring that died...all our cars are now tinted.  I passed these on.

42.  Scraps of paper

43.  Pillows from my mother-in-laws house.  For some reason we brought them home.  Trevor had 8 pillows on his bed, Hannah 6, we had 5.  Too many!!!  I got rid of 4 crappy pillows.  Thrown away.

44.  We only use cloth napkins in our house, but I threw out a bunch of napkins that had seen better days.

45.  Extension cord that had been scrapped and looking pretty unsafe

46.  Screwdrivers that were chipped and really worked to remove no screw

47.  Old school agendas

48.  Paint cans that looked like they were 20 years old (and they may be)

49.  Crappy paintbrushes

50.  Cassette tapes, I have no player why did I keep these?

I am going to keep going.  Streamlining my life. 

Day 3 of snowed in

Being poor on trapped in the house if wearing on me.  Cabin fever has set in.  Holy Moly!!  I have done all the dishes, all the laundry, all the sewing repairs, all the touch up of paint, all the cleaning, all the changing of sheets...good gravy you get the picture. I have made 32 cards, 2 canvas thingys, bunches of die cuts paper piecings, organizing of my drawing materials, the taxes, made a peanut butter pie, bit all my nails to the quick, and even got all the recyclables together.  This stupid ice must melt soon, I am not made to sit home all day!!!!

Here is what I created today: