Custom Work

Superfluous DVD Case

My husband came home with this DVD one day, which was loaned to him by a friend as a must watch! As I inspected the cover I told Josh, "that guy looks a lot like a young Sam Axe." What? The goofy, tactically helpful, best friend of Michael Weston, on Burn Notice, isn't a household name? Oh.

Look, he autographed it! Turns out that Sam's real name is Bruce Campbell and before I knew about him he was starring in cult classics like The Evil Dead and Army of Darkness. I do like Sam Axe, but I'm not a devoted enough fan to watch something that features a "ghastly army of skeletons," so while Josh watched the movie, I made a box to protect that fancy signature!

One final note, those little guys with the fork and match are pretty cute. I wonder what their story line is.

Custom Address Books

Have you ever had one of those friends that you don't talk with for ages, but when you do it's as if no time has passed? I have one of those from childhood/ teenhood, who I just love! But this post is about address books, isn't it! This friend of mine got in touch to see if I could make some custom address books for some newly married folks, and this is what we came up with!

I had some extra paper after the endsheets were made, so I made some simple soft cover books to include in the package. I thought my friend and her mom could toss them in their purses, or gift them along with the address books!

This endsheet paper is mesmerizing! 
I was able to use pre-sewn text blocks for these, which is a huge savings over printing and cutting out all of those little tabs by hand! Check out the link if you'd like to try your own DIY books.

This lokta paper was interesting to use for endsheets. It is handmade, so there is a variation in thickness throughout the sheet. You can see through it in some spots, I'll have to remember that because it could be a fun parlor trick for another project!

A Patriotic Gift

A good friend of mine, who was born on the 4th of July, has a special interest in the Presidents of our country.

I always get excited when I come across neat presidential things, because I can squirrel them away for later gift giving! A while ago, I found this little book about the lives of the U.S. Presidents at one of my favorite antique shops, The Butler Did It Antiques in Cannon Beach.

The book is very slim and just has a paper cover, so I thought it deserved a clamshell. Then I decided that it needed my friend's initials on it. Very presidential, don't you think?

Here the book is nestled in its box. It is a Little Blue Book, as can be seen on the front cover. I wonder if it was ever truly blue, that's some serious fading!

It all starts with George! All of the illustrations are pretty great. Another thing you can see in this photo is that the book was printed in the US, but what I didn't realize is that it was published/printed in Girard, KS. Girard is about an hour away from my friend's hometown of Independence, KS. That was a fun discovery!

Piper Photography DVD Packaging

Another Piper Photography project! This is the packaging you'll receive if you order photos on DVD from your session at Piper Photography. I love the way Lauren's company colors go with that gray bookcloth.

A definite bonus to having a great photographer as a client is seeing awesome shots of your work! Would you like to see them, too? Check out Lauren's blog post, here!

Custom Keepsake Photo Box

 My friend Lauren of Piper Photography in Alabama always comes up with great projects! She has multiple package options for her clients and offers one that includes a keepsake box filled with photos from their session. There were a couple special features that she was looking for, and the box in these photos is what fit the bill!

The lid, which opens like a book, doubles as a photo frame. One side of the frame is open and allows photos to slide out for easy swapping. A ribbon pull, secure on the bottom of the box, makes it easy to pull photos out for viewing.

Emily & Kevin's Wedding Album

Congrats to Emily & Kevin, this is their day! I had the pleasure of meeting a great friend of theirs last year, and he got in touch with me about making something special for their wedding gift.

 They are having a Victorian themed wedding and had custom silhouettes made to match their motif.

We decided on this swirling damask patterned paper for the endsheets which added a nice elegant touch.

Pretty soon all of these pages will be full of photos from their happy day! Best Wishes!

Cecil's Magic Yellow Pants: A Custom Project

Recently, I had the opportunity to be a part of a family's special project. A grandmother had carefully illustrated a series of flat watercolor pages to create a delightful story for her granddaughter. It was my task to take the flat sheets and hinge them together so I could bind them into a book.

The book is about a real cat named Cecil who has a patch of yellow fur that makes it look like he's wearing pants! These pants make anything possible for this fun-loving cat, however, it is revealed that the pants aren't magic, nor are they even real! The moral of the story is that being special and doing special things comes from within. Don't these illustrations make you smile? I just love Cecil on his magic carpet!

It almost looks like a duplicate, but this smaller version of the book was made so grandmother could have her story on hand when the grandchildren visit! This version was made using scans of the original illustrations.

Thanks to Cecil's family for including me in your special project! It was a pleasure!

Custom Folding Trinket Boxes

Upon our return from France, my bags were a tad heavier with the weight of souvenirs and trinkets. Among my favorite were beautiful silky cotton prints by Liberty of London. My friend Camille introduced me to the fabric and the Liberty craze that seemed to have taken over all of the shops in Paris. 

I didn't have a specific plan for these treasures, but they just had to come home with me! I spread all of the fabric out for my family this summer and one of my aunts had the idea to have me use some of it to make something for her and my cousins for Christmas. These photos are of the boxes that were under their tree on Christmas morning. The box above uses Liberty's Small Susanna print.

I sent thumbnails of all of my fabric to my aunt and she asked my cousins to pick their favorites, without giving them a reason why. This was a top-secret project! This Liberty print, Mauvey, is the first that caught my eye. I bought a metre of it at the most fabulous store, Merci, also introduced to me by Camille and her friend Cynthia.

This sweet floral print was a JoAnn's find.

For the guy in the brood, Liberty's Pelagia print gave a bit of a masculine touch.
I found this print of the Tuileries Gardens at Hearbeat Quilts in Barnstable, MA. You can just see a few details in this shot, but I have a couple of yards of it, so I imagine it'll make its way into a quilt (and more photos) this year.

These boxes were based on a trinket box that I made for my dad to give to my mom a while back, and now that I've gotten back into the groove of making them, I'm thinking I'll have to make a lot more!

Anniversary Book

This morning I spent about ten minutes watching a heart warming and tear jerking video of soldiers reuniting with their children. It made me want to put Return to Me in the dvd player, turn the air conditioning up, cuddle under a warm blanket and let the tears flow! However, it's only 9am and these books don't bind themselves, so instead I'm reminiscing about a book bound for a sweet and thoughtful wife to give to her husband on their 10th anniversary earlier this year.

My client wanted a small 5" x 5" blank book full of deckled edge watercolor pages. She provided the beautiful piece of fabric for the cover as well as some of the silk from her wedding dress for the doublures.

The blank pages were filled with a letter from wife to husband. It's an honor to make books like these that will end up being keepsakes for years to come.

Here's to a day full of sweet things and happy tears!

Black and White and Red all over!

I'm not talkin' newspapers! Nice thick business cards - white on one side, black on the other, with red printing and red edges. Pretty sharp. Printed by Mama's Sauce and edge colored by me, 500 down and a mere 1,250 to go!

Cleaning off all of the dark gray dust from the white sides, after sanding the edges smooth, really made me appreciate the last edges I colored (red on pure white cards).

It's official, I've been back home for two weeks, and I'm back in the swing of things. Josh and I are still updating our other blog because there are plenty of adventures that we still have to share. Last week I posted a summary of the people and places we got to see.