Wednesday, September 7, 2011

How to make a refillable notebook from a gatefold card

Well this took a little while...

Hero Arts littlest birds notebook

It's a 5-1/4" square hybrid card,
done in an off-set gate-fold style,
as you can see by the inside:

Hero Arts littlest birds notebook partly-OPEN

It has lots of printed (and water-distressed) digital papers
and a Hero Arts bird cage & my little doodled bird digi:

my doodled bird

...And actually, it started off as a card, but during the process
it turned into a notebook holder:

Hero Arts littlest birds notebook INSIDE

The notebook is held in by ribbon,
so it's removable/refillable:

notebook attached w ribbon

On the front, it says
The littlest birds...

sentiment front

...sing the prettiest songs:

sentiment inside
(on the inside)

And somehow this ended up being the world's
longest tutorial ever made...

...make a gatefold card with a
refillable notebook inside:

This is a step by step tutorial for a 5 1/4" square
off-set gate fold style hybrid card turned notebook
(and a whack of odd details) ;o)

Step 1) Make the image & make 3D doors to go onto it:

A) Print two cage images from Hero Arts onto white cardstock.
B) Stamp over the two images with a text stamp in versamark ink and heat emboss it in clear embossing powder.
C) Let the heat embossing cool and sponge over it with turquoise in. (I used Tumbled Glass Distress ink).

The heat embossed text gives a nice subtle texture:

clear embossing texture

D) Cut the two images with a Nestabilites Label die.
E) Choose your favourite of the two & set it aside for the main image.
F) Add stitching bordering the main image, if you like.
G) To make 3D birdcage doors: cut one cage in half & cut the two doors out.
H) Adhere the whole bird cage to a die cut mat
I) Mark two spots on each of the cut out cage doors where you’d like the hinges to be.

This is a trimmed Spellbinders Nestabilities Labels 9 die:
(i can't stop doing that)

(side edges cut flat on the label nestabilities shape)

...with hand-cut black and gray cardstock mats around it:

That way the mat is not too fat. ;o)

Step 2) Adhere the tow 3D cage doors to the image.

Step 3) Pierce holes for the hinges (I pierced 3 pairs of teeny holes)
& then stitch the hinges on.

Stitching helps doors stay on as well as looking fussy-cutesy:

Of course, you could staple them on for a metal look,
or just glue them if you want a quick method.


Step 4) Print a little bird, colour it, & cut it out. This bird is one I doodled & shared as a free digital bird image in this older post (I printed for this project at 75% of its size.)

Step 5)
Cut pieces to make a 5 1/4" square gatefold card:

Measurements for the 2 pieces of cardstock:

1) LARGE (card base) 10 1/2” x 5 1/4” (shown in turquoise above)
2) SMALL (right hand gatefold flap) 3” x 5 1/4” (shown in gray above)

Score the large piece at 4” and 9 1/4” (see photo above for visual of the score lines)

If you are stitching your patterned paper, you may want to cut 2 second pieces for the back of the 2 gatefold flaps (to hide the messy back of the stitching) for the RIGHT: 3” x 5 1/4” again and one for the LEFT a little larger:

If you are adding a notepad, you can score two extra lines to make the card fold like a book (see the red dotted lines in the photo above).

Step 6)
Print digital papers & cut them out

DOTS: 5 1/2"tall x 3 3/4"wide
DAMASK: 5 1/2"tall x 2 3/8" wide (Cut an extra piece to decorate the top of a removable notebook inside: topper for the notebook in a card this size would measure 5 1/8" by 3 inches). Stitch the patterned paper pieces, if you like.

I added colour to distress the border (using watercolour pencils blended with a damp sponge)

Step 7) Make a decorative band: I put rub-ons onto white cardstock (1 1/4" wide & just under 5.5" tall. You can cut it to save rub-ons) Of course, If you have no rub-ons you could stamp or use patterned paper or whatever.

I used Cosmo Cricket Ever After rub-ons and then added yellow knots of thread to tie in the yellow on other elements:

Step 8) Adhere the rub-on bits to a strip of dark gray cardstock 5 1/2" tall

Step 9) Adhere the cage image onto the dark gray strip

Step 10) Make paper ribbon ruffle

These ruffle strips were made with paper that was: accordion folded,
taped together, spritzed with shimmer, then pierced and stitched

They have shimmeriness:

(The DIY shimmer spray has Lumiere pearl paint & Barely Banana reinker). After spraying them, I added some reinker directly to a brush and used it to dye the edges of the ruffle more concentrated yellow.

Step 11) Adhere the ruffle behind the image (on the gray strip)

Here's a front view of the image with the paper ruffle added:

It covers up a fair bit on the front, but the rest of the
ruffle will show from the inside of the card.

Step 12) Adhere the ruffle strip (with the image)

12 A) Add another gray strip to the back-i folded this one to balance out the layers.

12 B) Stick dimensional pieces on the gray strip to balance out the thickness of the paper ruffle layers

12 C)Adhere image & gray strip with rub-ons and ruffles to the card (i find it easiest to line up on the inside so i can be sure that the gray paper that shows is even

Step 13)Adhere the right-hand side gatefold piece:

13 A) Put adhesive on the inside Small right hand-side flap

13 B) Stick the smaller piece of plain cardstock cut in step 5B onto that adhesive

Here's the front view--with gatefold piece attached

(As you can see, the left side is bigger so the fold is off-set)

Step 14) Assemble Outside panels of the card:

14 A) Adhere largest patterned paper panel (dots) onto the left gatefold front: left side of the card, stick it on aligned all the way to the left.

14 B) Adhere the right paper panel (damask) to the right gatefold piece, stick it on aligned all the way to the right.

Step 16) Add the saying:


16 A) Emboss saying on vellum (from a word document printed on an inkjet printer heat embossed with clear embossing powder).
16 B) Cut the words apart & add vellum behind them (tinted with Copic Marker)


16 C) Stick the first three words of the sentiment ("the littlest birds") on the front & Adhere the rest of the words on the inside of the card.
16 D) Add a little stitch on either side of the words.

A little cheap trick I've shown ya before, but one I adore:
distressing digi paper (printed on an inkjet printer) with water.

It's sort of a sneaky way to make sure that your project keeps
looking nice, since any wear and tear it takes will look
like it's part of the distressing. ;)

...make a re-fillable Notebook
for inside a card:

Step 1) Cut paper to measure 5x5 inches.


Step 2) Staple it together.

Step 3) Make a stitched topper for it: Print dotted paper on some cardstock. Fold it in half, pierce it and stitch it.


Step 4) Adhere the stitched topper to the notepad


To make the notebook removable:

A) Wrap some ribbon around
B) Adhere both ribbon ends to the back.
C) Add adhesive and more cardstock/patterned paper to hide the ribbon ends & hold them in place.


D) Slide the notebook into the ribbon on the inside of the card


Having some pages above the ribbon & some below it will make it sturdy.

All that shows in the end is a little bit of matching ribbon:


And there you have the notebook (inside the card)


For an extra special gift, you can give several refills as well.

And that's it...

Unfolded part way:

Fully unfolded:

Hope your day is sunny & fun,


Dawn said...

OMWord...girl! You are just a Creating-Genius-Machine!! This is just over-the-top AWESOME!!

Merry said...

Oh wow...I love every little detail you have put into the project...thanks so much for the tutorial....all your stitching is just wonderful.

CraftyLoops said...

Oh my giddy aunt, this is phenomenal! You are so creative. I know how long it takes to do tutorials so I really appreciate the time you took to make this. Its a beautiful creation. Lee x

g said...

oh how beautiful! your sweet stitching and careful attention to the tiny things make all of your creations so very special! how i love the embossed colored vellum and the faux french knots on the rub-on cardstock layer!
this is just amazing!! thanks so much for the tutorial!

Jodi C said...

Oh My Goodness, your creative flair always inspires me, I wish I had just an inch of your talent. Thank you so much for a wonderful, beautiful project idea and tutorial. I am going to try this for sure. Thank you for being so wonderfully creative and giving of your time.

Holly said...

ou never fail to impress me. I love how you think of the neatest little detail that i would never think of. On this particular project that happens to be the stitching of the hinges on the cage doors. Just fabulous! Thanks so much Melissa.

Vee said...

Another great one Mel, thanks.
Vee xx

Michelle Chedid said...

Congratulations girl..

Barbara said...

Just had to comment....this is a wonderful idea and a fabulous tutorial! Thanks for sharing!

Laura said...

Oh Mel! I love it! I will make this as soon as I reach back home!!! I ADORE every detail including the pretty sentiments on vellum with vellum WOW! You're my craft goddess and I mean every word of it!

Big hugs!

P.S. I hope all is ok, I didn't hear from you in a while :)

creativchen said...

Dear Mel,
I Just arrived at you blog. Oh my, do I love your art and creative mind! I'll be watching this blog closely, thank you for giving us so much of your time and mind. You make so wonderful and lovely works! I enjoyed the visit on your site. Many thanks for your beautiful inspirations!!
Many warm Hugs from Marina from Germany
I invited you gently to visit my creative Website:

leslie (crookedstamper) said...

Your attention to detail is A-MA-ZING! LOVE this!

Mari said...

Gorgeous, Mel! :)

Ольга Стурова said...

So many interesting details! Thank you!

Lisa - papergrace said...

This is AMAZING!! I don't have the kind of patience it takes to even attempt something like this. IF I did? You wouldn't hear from me for about a MONTH!! It's GLORIOUSLY BEAUTIFUL!! The stitching and teeny tiny details are all just stunning. What a phenomenal gift. :)

aimee said...

I love this its beautiful. your blog is great. i dont have the equipment for this but maybe il ask father christmas lol xxx