It's not what you gather, but what you scatter, that tells what kind of a life you have lived.

Monday, February 27, 2012

A new project

Merry Monday! I went for another 3-mile walk today, and boy did I feel it! I'm going to take it slow tomorrow. But I did finish it, so that's a good thing.

I promised a new project and I got started on it Saturday. How many of you have ever made a coffee filter book? They are actually really cute, and since the coffee filters come in more than one size, so can the books. Plus, it's the best use of coffee filters that I can think of! The filters I am talking about are the flat ones, quarter-circle shape. They come in brown and white, but I could only find the brown ones this time. And I usually use the larger size, but couldn't find them, either.

So I bought these and got started. I usually put about ten of them in a book. That's a good round number. I made these books with the Young Women at church and we did 7 pages for the YW values (back when there was only 7). I brought a bunch of papers in the value colors and we used the larger white filters, and lots of embellishments, and they turned out so cute! I wish I had kept my sample so I could show you, but I sent it to my granddaughter in Utah.

You will need at least one 12x12" sheet of heavy cardstock, or two 8 1/2 x 11" sheets. These will be your covers. They do not have to be the same and two-sided cardstock is great!  You need lots of other papers, and these can be scraps of all kinds. I like to have a theme or color scheme to mine, so I can pick out papers that go together easily. This book is all shades of blue, with a few accent colors. I also like to choose a title or an idea that will flow through the whole book, because that helps, too. This one is circles. And of course, you need embellishments and ephemera. 

My scrap tub. It's getting a little full and needs to be thinned out!
Okay. You start by tracing one of the filters, with the seam on the left-hand side, and make it about 1/8" bigger all around. Mark the seem side on your pattern, so you get things going the right way. The filters are not symmetrical, so if you accidentally turn the pattern over, it won't fit. Now, trace the pattern onto your heavy cardstock. I don't have any right now, and I'm really trying to use up what I have, which needed a little more body, so I attached other papers to the inside of the covers to give them a little extra strength.( I like to do this anyway, because it looks like end papers.) Using your pattern, cut two covers.

I do my main decorating before binding, so the holes go through the decorations, too. Sometimes I stitch around the edges and sometimes I don't. It depends on the look I'm going for. After I have the main stuff done, I punch holes for binding. This part is totally up to you. You can sew it together, or lace it, or tie it with ribbons and fabric strips.......there are any number of ways for binding books. I wanted this one to have a spiral binding, so I found a nice size piece of dowel and some heavy silver wire and made my own. I start the wire in the first hole and bend it so it won't come out. Then I lay the dowel on top of the book and wrap the wire around it and put it down the next hole. Then up around the dowel again and down the next hole. Keep doing this until you get to the last hole. Cut the wire with about an inch extra and remove the dowel. Bend the wire and wrap the end around the next coil so it doesn't come off. Do both ends, and there you have it......a book!

I stamped my dragon on the back. You can't read it but it says, "by George, You've Got It!"
All that's left to do (and it will take the most time) is to add papers, embellishments, stamps, pictures, etc. And journaling. Don't forget the journaling, because it's important.

And because the filters open up, each page is also a pocket! So make a template for the inserts and then you'll have double the space for photos and journaling. It also allows you to make some of your journaling a little more private.
Patterns for page inserts.

My book isn't done, but you can see where I'm headed. These books are really easy to put together and so much fun to make. And there is no wrong way to make them. You choose your colors or just go with the flow. A theme makes it easier for me, but you may not want a theme, and that's OK, too. Just enjoy yourself and create a book that is all you. Kids love to make these, too, and because they're cheap and easy, they make a perfect kid's craft.

So there's a new project for you to try. If you have any questions about anything, just email me and I will do my best to help. Until, next time, remember, the memories we make follow the road we take, so choose the high road.

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