This guest post is from Diane Marra. She shares how to transform an ordinary board book into a hand made treasure. There is a lot of stamping and heat embossing used in this project. In case you're unfamiliar with heat embossing, here is a link to a video that shows the basics. However, I'm warning you that it is an ad for a very noisy heat tool. But it was the shortest video I could find that covered the basics without a lot of useless chit chat.
The book has lots of fold outs and pockets for hidden journaling. The techniques in this tutorial would work for any topic.
I wanted to make a book for my children and grandchildren to read each Christmas season. This Christmas story is about Santa reminding us to “teach the children” the true meaning of Christmas. The author is unknown, and I love the word pictures the story creates.
To read the complete story, Download Teach the Children story Faith Sisters 2008. I have also made a free printable copy of the story that I used in my book and you can get it at my store on Adore Him Creations. I first read the story over at Faith Sisters a few years ago.
Thanks for letting me share my vision with you all.
Prepare the Book
I used a children’s board book with 5 pages.
Cover the entire book with gesso.
Paint over the gesso to color the pages. (You need to use gesso first because gesso is a primer and grabs onto the shiny surface of the board book.) Here's a quick video that explains the overpainting technique.
I used 5 colors of blue, a light, med and dark. I painted and wiped to get the soft grungy look. I use inexpensive acrylic paint you can find at Michaels.
You can decorate your book any way you wish. I am going to share some of the techniques I used to decorate mine.
You'll notice that throughout the book I've used vintage Santa pictures. I downloaded my vintage Santa pictures from the internet. Here are some sites to try for images: Here, here, here, and here. The shine on the paper is from Stickles (glitter glue).
We're going to create a little booklet for the first part of my story. I decorated the page base by stamping and embossing snowflakes.
Stamp an evergreen tree stamp (Penny Black Pine & Star 3034K) and emboss it.
Using a stencil (Dots all Around Crafters Workshop TCW78) use a white pen to fill in the circles, add your text with a pen, and then add Stickles to the dots.
You may have noticed that I like to embellish my printed vintage images with Stickles.
I used an actual star ornament on my page. (Mine is from the Dollar Tree.)
The rest of the page consists of a library pocket (template here) stamped, Glimmer Misted, and with text added.
I used a tree/branch stamp (Stampscapes Oak Branch 203G), and stamped it onto vellum. To create the Christmas ornaments, I stamped TPC Studio “Christmas Glamour Clear Stamps” onto a separate piece of paper. I cut them out and “hung” them from the stamped tree. I also added Stickles to the flourish design.
You can do a lot of the design work digitally. For this page I printed the story over my image and adhered it to the page. I added a pretty silver ribbon for some decoration and dimension. I also added tiny silver bells on a string.
We are going to create a hidden spot for our story with a patterned paper cover. Print your text onto vellum and attach the left edge to a piece of patterned paper that is larger than the piece of vellum. Create a fold at the left edge of where the vellum and patterned paper overlap.
Adhere the vellum to the book page. Add a vintage Santa picture, and mini candy canes (you can find them at the dollar store, sold as an ornament for mini trees). I added Stickles and a snowflake (from Dollar Tree) for even more dimension.
Wreaths are a very popular symbol of the season. Here are four easy steps to create your own:
- cut a circle
- add Stickles
- add a small red bow on top.
- stamp and emboss the Teresa Collins “Christmas Circle Stamp" TC-8144 from Stampers Anonymous
For this page, I once again created a card that folds out to reveal the story. I used the same method as in page 7, but I didn't punch the border. Instead, I decorated the inside of the cover with a Santa image.
- Start with an envelope.
- Decorate the front as desired.
- Use a circle punch to create a half circle at the top of the envelope.
Attach the envelope to the page and insert the story strip.
Congratulations, you have created an heirloom Christmas Story book for your family to enjoy year after year. Please post your pictures so we can all be inspired!
My name is Diane Marra and I am a mixed-media Christian artist. A mother of 6 (3 boys, 3 girls) I have been scrapbooking, art journaling and doing mixed media faith art for 10 years. My work is characterized by combining words of faith with color, texture, paint and paper. I have a passion for creating faith art as well as teaching others how to creatively pursue art (journaling, scrapbooking, mixed media and painting) as an expression of worship. Adore HIM Creations was created to showcase and inspire people to create art from their heart to His.