Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Making Mini Book Charms, more Upcycling

Love the Little Things -- 

Another Upcycling installment

*Upcycling--for me--is all about taking something of no value, or extremely little value and turning it into something to treasure. These little things, due to their unique quirks, oddities and individual flaws, are precious to me . . . I hope you too can find the joy in making little treasure of your own--and maybe saving a little bit of space in that landfill . . .

Making Miniature Leather Charm-Sized Books


PVA Book Glue
Small paint brush
Water and paper towels for clean-up
Rotary Cutter and self-heal mat and ruler, or a steady hand a good pair of scissors

Leather scraps

Some salvaged headbands (look closely at an old bound book, you'll see them. I saved these from last month's Upcycled Flowers and Folded Dresses)

A stack of old magazines, glue-bound--NOT staple-bound!

And a big paper cutter -- very big -- this is the hardest thing to come by for us ordinary folks. A lot of copy places have access, but at $1.00 per cut, it gets a bit spendy, particularly when (contrary to the picture) you can only really cut one magazine at a time--otherwise they squish out and produce odd shaped mini textblocks.

1- I found it easiest to chop the ENDS off (spine in). I highly recommend only doing ONE magazine at a time. Brace the end so it doesn't squish out if you can. I used a weight (you will see it later)

2- Cut the long tall skinny cut first--about 3/4" wide, then chop into about 1" tall magazine textblocks

Chopped up magazines =  mini text blocks that are oh-so-cute!

Self-healing Mat, Rotary Cutter, Clear View Ruler

Using a mini texblock as your guide, cut a strip of leather  . . .

or a few long strips
Make adjustments as needed

Lots of mini's ready for a final trim before molding the leather

This next step can be skipped if you want:
Molding the Leather

1- Soak the leather
2- Remove from water, dry off a bit, now fold in half and press with a weight
3- When still cool to the touch, but not really wet, insert the text block and press until fully dry

Glue the Textblock into the Cover

1- Sand the magazine textblock at bit, if it is a shiny slick one
2- Glue with PVA Book Glue
3- Press until dry

Do you want to add a charm? 

1- Find the center, mark it
2- Punch the hole
3- Thread an eye pin through the hole, careful to not catch the already glued in textblock
4- Bend pin (cut with wire cutters in needed) around and into bottom of textblock to ensure pin does not pull out
5- Add jumpring attached beads, put on a chain and  . . .

What about those headbands?

If you add headbands, I do recommend using either just a plain jump ring and no eye pin, or putting the eye pin through the cover before gluing the textblock in. The eye pins tend to catch the headbands while you are threading them along the inside of the spine.

1- Trim the headbands, use the textblock as a guide
2- Use PVA glue to adhere them to the top and bottom of the textblock

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