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Posts Tagged ‘Paper’

During a move a couple of years back I found myself packing up hundreds and hundreds of CD cases.  The numbers were staggering, but their sheer volume, once in front of my face, was hard to handle.  After I’d filled a box (or three) I started to doubt the sanity of packing and moving the insane collection into my new home.  So, I decided to toss the cases.  One by one, I packed my discs into humongous CD binders.  In no time I had condensed the size of my music collection by 3/4.   Though I was relieved to see my burden shrunk, I felt a pang of sadness at letting go of the cases for all of my favorite albums.  How many countless hours had I spent pouring over each and every one of those liner notes?  I knew and loved each one.  How could I just chuck them into the garbage bin?  Being crafty, my mind fashioned a strange compromise.  I pulled the liner notes from the CD cases and stashed them away in a plastic bag in anticipation for the day that I figured out how to make something creative with them.

I used the stash as a sort of paper buffet for some time.  I used the pictures and text inside the liner notes to make buttons, magnets, and collages, but it wasn’t until much later that I came up with the greatest use for my old CD books ever, the Album Bouquet!  One day I got my hands on a flower shaped paper punch, some beads, and a spool of floral wire and it all came together.  Here’s what I made:

RadioHead: Kid A

The Misfits: Static Age

PJ Harvey: Is This Desire?

Here’s how you make them.

You’ll need:

  • CD Liner Notes
  • A Flower Shaped Paper Punch
  • A Mini Hole Punch (1/8 inch)
  • Floral Wire
  • Medium Sized Seed Beads
  • Double Sided Tape
  • Floral Tape

Directions:

  • Start by carefully removing the cover of the album and setting it aside.  This will be used as the vase, or wrapper for your bouquet.
  • Cut the remainder of the liner into strips that are just a little wider than your flower shaped punch.
  • Punch as many flowers as you can from the liner, then put them together into pairs of two.
  • Now punch two tiny holes into the middle of each pair of  flowers using your 1/8 inch hole punch.
  • Cut several 5 inch lengths of floral wire.
  • Line up a pair of flowers so that the holes in the middle align, then carefully thread a piece of wire through one of the holes.
  • Slip a bead onto the wire, then thread about 1 inch of the wire through the other hole in the flower so that the two ends of the wire are underneath the flower.  Carefully twist the two ends together.
  • Repeat the last two steps until you have tons of flowers.
  • Arrange the flowers into a pretty bunch, then secure the stems together using floral tape.
  • Roll the album cover into a cone and secure it from the inside with a piece of double sided tape.  Curl the edges on the outside cover down a little to make it extra pretty.
  • Place your bouquet of flowers into the wrapper and present it to your favorite music lover.

If you are wondering what to do with the empty jewel cases themselves, you will be happy to learn that they can be recycled.  However, your local recycling center is unlikely to take them, as they are made of a material that is notoriously difficult to recycle.  But fear not, the internet has come to the rescue.  Visit GreenDisk.com to learn how you can have your cases ethically disposed of.   Or, if you are feeling crafty,  check out the Top 14 Ways to Reuse Unwanted Jewel Cases.  Yet another option is to call up your local used CD store to see if they’d like to take your cases.  Second hand music stores are often in need of extra jewel cases, so your local shop may be happy to take them off your hands.

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You may remember a post several months ago which explained how you can create paper versions of your friends to take out on the town with you when you can’t all be together in real life.  My sisters and I began making flat friends the last time that we got 3 out of 4 of us together for a big fun time.  We really were sad that Caity, our youngest sister, couldn’t be there to share in our good times.  We McNally girls are big on making lemonade out of lemons if you know what I mean, so we created “Flat Caitlin” from paper and popsicle sticks, and took her with us throughout the day (and night’s) shenanigans.

My sister, Heather, just moved to Austin, Texas.  I helped her move, so I’m here for a few more days.  Sarah, another sister, is arriving tonight,  just in time to grab dinner and hit a Camera Obscura concert.  Fun times are definitely going to be had, but how can our joviality be complete when we are missing one sister?  That’s right.  It’s Flat Friend time.

We decided to go with a new photo this time. Mix things up, you know? Keep it fresh.

Caity's High School Graduation

Unfortunately, this photo mostly just shows her head, and we really need a good portion of body in order to get the Flat Friend just right.  Plus, we need somewhere to stick the popsicle stick.  Not a problem though, with the wonders of Photo Shop, we can easily create the facade of a torso.  Just a few clicks of the mouse, and VIOLA!

Ready to become a Flat Friend!

Isn’t digital imagery amazing? Now to print her out, attach her to a stick, and hit the town!  Yippee Kai Yay, Texas!

Update: Here are some photos of the fun we had with Flat Caitlin in Austin

The Four McNally Ladies in the Bluebonnets

Flat Caitlin Enjoying the Sunset Over Lake Travis

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Apparently, I can’t get enough of Amy Butler crafting paper.  After finishing off a tin of Green Tea the other day I got the bright idea to redecorate the can and give it a second life.

Supplies! Craft Paper, Empty Canisters, and Glue.

How To:

  • Find a canister you’d like to remodel.  You can probably find some likely candidates in your pantry.  Tea tins, tobacco canisters, coffee cans, and powdered drink containers are just a few examples.
  • Remove any problematic packaging from the container.  If it has a paper label, you may want to leave it on.  As long as it is smooth and well adhered, it will actually help to keep the decorative paper attached.  Things you may want to remove include stickers, pamphlets, or oddly places labels.  The best thing to use to remove them is a adhesive remover solution, but if you don’t have one handy, you can try mayonnaise, hot water, nail polish remover, or even vegetable oil.
  • Carefully cut a piece of decorative paper to fit around the container.  It is best to use thick papers like card stock or scrapbook paper, otherwise you may be able to see the original packaging underneath.
  • Using School Glue or Elmer’s Glue, spread a thin layer of glue evenly across the wrong side of your paper.  I like to spread thin circles instead of spreading it flat, but the choice is up to you.
  • Carefully attach your paper to the container and hold it firmly until it has dried enough to hold its own shape.
  • You can add a line of ribbon in a corresponding color to the paper’s edges to give the container a more finished look.  Just measure it out and attach it with a very thin coat of glue.

All done!

Your finished canisters can be used for about a million things.  Try using them to hold any number of little doo-dads. Take the lids off and they can hold paint brushes, pencils & pens, silverware, or faux floral arrangements.

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Sometimes our friends cannot always join us when we want them too. Perhaps you have a favorite buddy, sibling, or pal who can't make it to your big party or special event?  Don't fret.  There is a great alternative to having your real friend with you for all of life's precious moments.  In just 3 easy steps you can create your very own Flat Friend version of your stick in the mud buddy.  Your Flat Friend will actually be MORE fun than your real friend since you can do almost anything to or with them for the sake of taking funny pictures.  Being mostly paper, they are pretty much powerless to stop you.

Step One:
Print out the funniest/worst picture of your friend and cut them out.
HowTo1

Step Two:
Glue your friend to a stick of some kind.  I used a foam paint brush here, but you can also use a chop stick, a popsicle stick, a pen, or even a fly swatter. Pretty much anything tall, slim, and stiff. I'm sure you can find something appropriate. (Or depending on how far you want to take this joke, something inappropriate.)
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Step Three:
Embellish your friend.  On their own a Flat Friend is, well, kind of FLAT.  Try jazzing them up with some glitter, buttons, or brick-brack. 
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My sisters and I recently made a Flat Friend out of our youngest sister, Caitlin, when she wasn't around to help us do silly wedding crap.  Doesn't she look fabulous?  Now that your Flat Friend is ready, go out on the town and have some fun.  Don't forget a camera!  You'll need it to take tons of embarrassing pictures of your new and improved friend, and then upload them onto Facebook, lovingly tagging each one to your 3D friend's account.

FlatCaitlinSushi

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I was doing some block printing on Sunday and was going to take a photo when I realized my camera was on my desk ALL the way upstairs. So I took a video with my Flip instead.

I made about a ga-billion little shopping bags for our upcoming shows.  I had these little Hello Kitty bags stashed away forever. It's nice to finally use them!

P.S. Make sure you watch the part after the credits – there's a surprise.

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