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(Part one, part two, part three)

This is my favorite part, ya'll. (Except maybe actually using the finished product, because that's pretty cool too.) There's so much scope for imagination!

I started with an old key. They open things and seem sort of symbolic and I just like them, yeah? But this was one a wee bit rusty and generally not-awesome looking, so I painted it ... with nail polish. I could have done two coats, but I kind of liked the uneven finish. (Remember my 'vision' [hoho, so fancy-pants artistic sounding] is to have lots of different textures, and everything a little rough around the edges.)

I thought about mounting it on the cover, but then I remembered how I liked the attached ribbon-bookmark on a considered-but-rejected book candidate for this project, so I found a piece of thin cord, tied the key to the end of it, and glued the cord into the top spine of the book.

Just gently pry open the top 1/4" the spine, put in some glue (I swear by E-6000, we'll talk about it later), and tamp the end of the cord down into the glue. Using a skewer would be a good idea. Or you could use a scissors like I did. Just, yanno, remember to clean the glue off afterwards, unlike me.

I knew I wanted raised letters on the cover. Chipboard works great, but I found some corrugated cardboard and thought, why not? Not an elegant look, but it works for this.

My first idea was to roughly brush some paint across the tops (to sort of look like sand?) but I didn't like that look at all. Maybe if I had painted the whole thing and then sanded off the edges I would have liked it more, but I'm not sure how sanding cardboard would work. So, plan B: crust the letters with clear glitter! Voila, sandy letters.

I still wasn't sure where and how I wanted to use the letters, so I moved on to preparing the book cover. First things first: I knew I wanted to keep the title, but I didn't need the author's name. I often cover part or all of a book cover with paper (it actually works: coat the cover in mod podge or something similar and press the paper down really well. It'll be wavy while it's wet but should smooth out more or less completely when dry, though this sometimes takes 24 hours. Coat with several layers of mod podge.) But this time: PAINT.

Another use for the book pages I removed: providing a straight edge.

Now to start thinking about the front cover: I liked the shape of this notecard that mainemilyhoon sent me (gosh, I hope you don't mind me repurposing it like this, Emily. It's better than eventually throwing it away, right? NOW IT IS PART OF MY LIFE FOREVER.) One side was blank, the other had writing on it ... but a really pretty pink glittered edge. So I cut out an oval of patterned paper to fit and glued it to the cover. Then I added a line from Glen Campbell's "Galveston", but the paper looked awfully white next to all those muted colors, so I brushed peach paint over it and immediately wiped it off, leaving it with just a bit of a tint.

Oh, and that "2012"? I stitched it onto a piece of old, old linen I found between the pages of an old, old book.

Then I slathered the whole thing in a layer of mod podge and let it dry.

Next up: glue on the letters!

A note on glue: E-6000 is amazing stuff. It's inexpensive, dries clear, and has an incredibly strong but flexible bond. It's used a lot in jewelry-making, but I use it for almost everything. I wouldn't glue paper with it, but it'll give a much stronger bond to most objects than, say, elmer's glue.

So I glued on the letters and then I put on several more coats of the mod podge, paying special attention to the letters.

Annnnd here is the finished cover!

I added some ribbon with a key motif at the bottom and mod podged that, then E-6000'd a scrap of leather on top with a word decal (no mod podge on that; I wasn't sure what would happen to the leather).

For the back, I fell in love with this picture (it's actually from an advertisement for scrapbook paper.) I loved the lines - doesn't her hair kind of look like waves? - and colors. For texture I added some lace, lightly colored with paint because the white was too white, some more lyrics and a few other paper bits, and my *favorite* part: a brass mermaid. The mermaid was a gift from jkgeroo and I sincerely hope she doesn't mind me using her this way instead of as her orginal bookmark function. :)

You can't see it here, but I ran some lines of glue + clear glitter along through the lady's hair for more texture.

Aww, look at all those blank pages waiting for adventures. I can't wait. :)


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 14th, 2012 06:06 pm (UTC)
That's so cool!
Sep. 14th, 2012 10:24 pm (UTC)
Ooooh, maybe I should make everyone I visit write a little something in it! It would be like a guest book, but in reverse. :D
Sep. 14th, 2012 10:36 pm (UTC)
That's a good idea! I do tend to write insipid things in books like that, though. Heh heh!
Sep. 14th, 2012 10:39 pm (UTC)
Oh gosh, me too. And in group birthday cards when they're like, "sign this!"

I'll accept doodles in lieu of words. ;)
Sep. 18th, 2012 05:25 pm (UTC)
Great stuff!! I think that lady's hair looks more like pasta than waves, tho. :D
Sep. 19th, 2012 12:50 pm (UTC)
Haha, so it does!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )