So I have a paper trimmer now.  Apparently God decided I need one.  A free one.  Which is a bit mysterious, since it’s been on my list of things to buy at some point for ages, and we could afford to pay for one if we wanted to.  But I have no other explanation for the fact that I mentioned that I don’t have one on an online forum and someone offered to send me her spare one.  For free, as I said.  I’d link to her blog if she had one, but she doesn’t.

Anyway, I now have an Awesome Paper Trimmer.  I mentioned it in the context of ATCs, but of course I haven’t used it for those at all, at least not yet.  My first thought was that I can finally try some bookmaking!

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Isn’t it pretty?  I made the cover before she sent the trimmer, which made me vastly impatient once it was done.  The cover is actually a box from Trader Joe’s for…curried tuna, I think?  Anyway, I cut it up and gessoed it and painted it and designed the paper cutout for it (designed in Inkscape, cut with my Silhouette) and ended up lining the inside with pink cardstock to stiffen it a bit.  I love it.

The binding is a “buttonhole-longstitch-hybrid” (whatever that means) and it looks pretty cool.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

I don’t know how well you can see that but the signatures show through the spine and the thread wraps over it and it’s all pretty awesome.

So I’ll be sending that back as my thank-you gift for my awesome free paper trimmer at some point.  Have to get to the post office to make that happen.

In the meantime, since I’m not swapping (too big a chance of missing something due to the pregnancy/baby thing), I decided to make some handmade thank-you notes for the people who make meals for us in the first few weeks.  Because that’s not ambitious at all :)

Actually, it dovetailed with the book project quite nicely.  I cut and scored ATC-sized cards with the paper trimmer, and isolated the flower from the Inkscape design to cut as a stamp.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

The swirls were added for this design, obviously.  I stamped it in acrylic paint (in brown, navy, and black) and then went back with the watercolors.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App

Not all of these are done, but you get the idea.  I’m pleased with them.  The envelopes take a little longer (I used this template, except I made the “D” side match the “C” side) but they’re not too bad.

I’ll share this on PPF, and do my best to visit a decent number of other blogs.

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24 Responses to Conspiracy

  1. Sadee says:

    This is gorgeous! And so awesome that you got a free paper-trimmer. I love how God provides, sometimes sending us little things He knows we want but haven’t even thought to ask for :). Thank you for visiting my blog and praying for you now that your baby comes safely and soon!

  2. Julie says:

    I love hand made books, yours is beautiful and I loved reading your process.

  3. Mary Walker says:

    Thanks for stopping by Happy PPF!

  4. What a lovely thing to send as a thank you. Also love your cards and how you made them. HPPF

  5. Gina says:

    Your book is lovely and the cards will be cherished by anyone who receives thenm

  6. Kat Sloma says:

    Such great projects! I love the book cover. Very batik-y. Happy PPF!

  7. They look so lovely with the hand colouring… a great result…xx

  8. Faye says:

    Your thank you notes are awesome! So beautiful.

  9. Elisa Choi says:

    Caitlyn, what a beautiful book you have made. I Have longed to do some book binding but haven’t learned the ropes yet. Reading your post I cannot understand how it goes maybe because of the terms but I adore the result. Also thank you so much for leaving a wonderful comment in my post about Expressions of Faith. I love it. I am posting this on my FB. Have a blessed day!

    • It would probably help to read a few tutorials. Bookbinding seems to go about the same way – you fold and stack your papers (usually 3-5 sheets at a time), and then sew along the fold line, and then attach them together somehow, with glue or more sewing. There’s links to a ton of tutorials at Paper is pretty cheap, so it’s probably worth it to just give one a try and see if you can work it out as you go. Pamphlet binding is especially easy.

  10. giggles says:

    Wow the book is amazing, love the cover and thanks for the tips of sewing the binding!! I have made a book another way with a friend! The cards are awesome too…makes me want on of those paper cutters… I’ll be on the hunt for it now!! Thanks for sharing…love it!

    Hugs Giggles

  11. MissyK says:

    Your book and cards are gorgeous.

    Thank you for your comment btw….. I’m impressed you get anything done with a little one already and another on the way!

    Love Karenx

  12. Beautiful work. I like the colors!!!

    Thank you for asking permission to print my image.
    Please print the one I post today and I’m sharing with Sundays Sketches and Blogland. I will start a new section of images to share with all of you for free and today I posted the first one.

    Have an amazing day, thanks again, …I really appreciate it!
    Nora Clemens-Gallo

  13. NatashaMay says:

    The book looks fabulous and I love your notes. :)

  14. carlarey says:

    Wow, what a fabulous book! Another thing I really want to try. And handmade thank you cards with a new baby? You are Wonder Woman.

  15. Terri Morse says:

    That is such a wonderful thing. What a generous act. Your book is beautiful! I am blown away by your design work for the paper cutout, and your book is exquisitely stitched. I’ve often thought of trying to make my own books, and your finished one is very inspiring. -Terri

  16. Lynn Cohen says:

    Awesome gift and your return book gift I’d over the top stunning! Lucky nice lady who sent the paper trimmer! HPPF !

  17. Wow how amazing to win a paper trimmer! That is such good fortune. And I love what you have done with it – your book is absolutely stunning. x

  18. soulbrush says:

    Your book and your art are gorgous- I’d swap atcs with you anytime. And I love your little girl- my hair was just like that when I was much much younger- about 100 years ago! Good luck with the pregnancy- soon you’ll have your wonderful new baby in your arms. Happy PPF and thanks for the visit.

  19. Carolyn Dube says:

    How cool about the paper trimmer! This is one of the reasons I love the art community-so generous! Your journal and binding is gorgeous! So even and precise!

  20. Diana Evans says:

    there is nothing more beautiful than anything handmade!!! wow!!! beautiful work!!!!

  21. Evelyn Yee says:

    Very nice. And getting a freebie is great. What a kind soul. I was just reading about “random acts of kindness”…

    Have fun.

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