Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Stamped Paper Covered Books

Tied book bundles are all the rage right now. I'm sorry, but I just can't get into it. Not that it isn't cute, but I've been taught, and have taught my chidren, to treat books with respect. It just goes against my grain to tear the covers off of books and put them in bondage tie them up.  If my kids saw me tearing up a book it just might scar them for life.  Although there are many books that I would burn before I allowed them in this house!

Now that all the book tier-uppers are up in arms (ducking), I'll show you what I did with some of my favorite cookbooks. They were looking pretty shabby after years of use, and I just couldn't bring myself to set them on my freshly painted bookshelves.  So I made covers for them.  (No books were harmed in the making of these covers). 

I used blank newsprint because I always have some on hand.  Our local newspaper sells end rolls for a couple bucks each.  You could also use butcher's  paper or brown packing paper.  The newsprint is very thin, so I folded it several times to strengthen it.  Here's how I went about it.

Lay your book sideways on the roll of paper to make sure it will fit with several inches left on each side.  If it is too large lay the book the other direction and cut paper off the roll. 

Measure the book from top to bottom

Make a 1"-2" fold on the edge of the roll.

Fold the paper the exact amount of the measurement of the book.  Fold up twice (for thin paper) to give it extra strength.  Cut paper off the roll leaving an extra two inches.  

Fold that extra two inches down for a nice clean edge at the top and bottom of the book.  

Lay your book on the paper again to check for size.  You may have to make some adjustment to your folds.  I kept measuring at each fold to try to avoid this.

I used Stampabilities "Le London Script" background stamp and black pigment ink.  

Press the ink pad onto the stamp, pressing harder in some areas than others.

You want it to look faded out in some areas.

Flip the book cover over so the outside is up.  Line up each stamp as best you can and fill the cover.  It won't matter if you're off a little.  It just adds to the charm.  I used the stamp twice before reloading with more ink.

When finished stamping, flip it back over and center the book on the cover.

Fold one edge in and tape it down.  I used packing tape for a tight hold.  If I ever remove the cover, I will use an exacto knife to slit the tape rather than peeling it off to avoid damaging the book.

Close the book and wrap the cover around it tightly.   Tuck the excess under the cover.  I wanted it nice and tight so that didn't catch and tear easily.  Tape the second flap. 

I used a Calligraphy pen to write the title on the spine after it was on the book.  You could do this before taping it, but knowing me I wouldn't get it straight!

I added a bird stamp to the cover of this one (can't remember the company), and used  Stampabilities "Fleur de Lis" on the spine.  I also used a leaf stamp on one spine (company unknown).  The bird looks a little lonely.  I think I will write the title on the cover of the book too.

That's it.  Very easy.  I may cover it with clear contact paper if I can find a matte one.  I think they look a lot better on my new shelves than my mismatched, tatty old books.  Even a new book got a cover,  because I didn't want any bright clashing color. 

This post linked to these fabulous parties:



The Shabby Nest

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special

Monday, November 28, 2011

Kitchen & Hallway Progress

I didn't write a Thanksgiving post as I was busy helping my mom, along with my sister's and our guys help.  We all pitched in to bring and make food for Thanksgiving.  Mom's been feeling under the weather lately and we didn't want the burden to keep her from getting together.  We always pitch in but we stepped it up a notch this year.

I did want to say just how blessed and thankful I am for so much.  We've got wonderful family and friends, a roof over our heads, plenty of food on our table, my husband has a job and we have our health just to name a few blessings.  I am also thankful for you, my friends.  You welcomed me with open arms when I started this blog.  I've made many wonderful friends here and I hope I get to meet you all someday.   When I sit down to blog I usually have my cup of tea right beside me and I feel like I'm sitting down to a cup of tea with friends chatting about what's going on in our lives.  I love ya ladies! 

Okay, I'll put down my tissue now and show you the progress on the kitchen wall and back hallway.   We moved the bookcases to the kitchen.  The wall isn't done yet, but it already looks so much better.  I refused forgot to take pictures of the before.  It was pretty bad.  We had a huge bulky buffet which by itself is pretty cool, but it sat next to a green metal bakers rack.  It was a cluttered mess, but I needed the storage they provided.

This first bookshelf doesn't have doors.  I know you used to be able to purchase parts for these, so I'm trying to find doors for the bottom of this bookcase to match the other one.

The bookcases are at each end of the wall.  There will be shelves and a skirted table between them soon.  Yes, that is my coffee pot on the floor. don't keep your coffee pot on the floor?   It will go on the table when it's finished.  I plan to have a little coffee bar and toaster there.  I just pulled the stuff from the buffet and bakers rack and put it on the bookshelves for now.  It will get rearranged later.

Eventually there will be a pantry off the kitchen, behind that open door you see to the right in the picture above.  That door leads to the basement.  There is a blank wall behind it which we will bust through to make a large walk in pantry.  I can hardly wait!

The back hall is also getting a facelift.  No more wallpaper border!  I painted and we've started installing beadboard the kitchen too!  It will get primed and painted soon.  I was hoping to get the rest of it installed yesterday, but the weather wouldn't cooperate.  It was rained all day here.  Blech! Hopefully we can finish it today.

Here's what it used to look like:

Here's some rather unexciting pictures of where we are at now.  Not there yet, but still a big improvement!

So much work left to do, but it is coming along nicely.  Watching the transformation happen puts a smile on my face that would put the Cheshire cat to shame! Have you smiled today? 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Painting and Painting and Painting

I haven't disappeared. I'm working on a large project and have had my nose to the grindstone. I've been painting everything that will stand still for two minutes. Well, not really, but it feels like it.

I'm working on the wall opposite the kitchen cabinets that I refaced last summer. Here's a sketch of what I think it will look like when I'm done. Of course that is assuming I don't change my mind...again.  Don't laugh at my dorky drawing...well ok...laugh if you must.

The bookcases are painted.  I sanded the edges lightly and am debating about glazing.  I may just use some briwax on them and call it done.  The middle part is going to be a rustic table with two shelves underneath for large appliances.  It will have a skirted front.  Above it I plan to hang two shelves for storing my white dishes and other pretties.  Those things underneath the first shelf are my mugs..I know...dorky.

Here's a sneak peek at the bookcases:

Sorry the pictures are dark.  It was night out and I'm too lazy tired to wait for better ones.  Remember when I showed some pictures of painting the kitchen walls?  Well I did, except for this wall, because there was a huge old buffet and a loaded down bakers rack in front of it.  I was not going to move those babies twice!  So I waited until I was ready to put the bookcases in place.  The wall got painted today and the bookcases will get moved in the morning.  The rest of the project will have to wait until after Thanksgiving.

And because I had the paint out, and the back hallway is right off the kitchen, of course I had to paint the hallway, which meant stripping the wallpaper border, and washing the walls, and, and, and!  My husband wonders why I don't stick to one project.  He just doesn't get it.  It's like the old song, "The hip bone's connected to the leg bone, the leg bone's connected to the ankle bone, the ankle bone's connected to the foot bone..."  There's just no good stopping place!

Oh my though, what a difference.  It doesn't look like much yet, but it will!  Here's some before shots of the hallway.  Again, dark pictures, too pooped to fix them.

Here I had removed the border, primed the red at the top of the wall and cut in the edges.

This last picture is a hint of things to come.  There's a reason I didn't bother painting the bottom of the walls. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I Won!...And a Blogger You Don't Want to Miss!

I have been totally remiss in announcing a giveaway that I recently won. First let me say how excited I am. Never. So when Brittany of Pretty Handy Girl emailed me to let me know I'd won the UPrinting giveaway for a 16 x 20 rolled canvas, I was shocked...but in a "well butter me and call me a biscuit" kind of way!

The reason I hadn't blogged about it was because I wanted to have it ordered and hung before I did. But when I told my daughter about it and the picture I planned to use, she talked me into waiting until she comes home for Thanksgiving, and doing a new family picture, which is a really good idea.

So you and I will have to wait to see it. But I know where I am putting it, I have a long wall above our sofa that I want to do a gallery wall on...after I tear down the yucky wallpaper border and paint the walls. But I'll show you the canvas before then, I promise!  I plan to order some other rolled canvas prints too.  They are very reasonably priced at UPrinting.  Then I can frame them any way I want.

Thank you Brittany for offering this giveaway! If you haven't visited Pretty Handy Girl, you reaaaallly should. She is one handy lady and a beautiful and generous gal inside and out. Every Friday she has a Tool Time Tutorial with videos, in which she tells about a tool and how to use it.

My favorite posts are the amazing step-by-step tutorials for the awesome things she makes. With tons of pictures, she explains just how she puts her creations together. Creations like these:

She made this hall storage bench unit for a friend.  I told you she was a generous lady, with a big heart!

I highly encourage you to pay Brittany a visit.  Tell her I sent you :) 


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