Friday, April 29, 2016

With Love

© Michele Emerson-Robert 2016

These little books are such fun to create and give as gifts. I match the theme/subject with the person who will be receiving it and create the design on the cover with handmade paper or paper casting which makes it even better. Follow along to create this gift journal - more will follow in the future with different themes. They go together so quickly that you can make 10 or more at a time. I bet you can come up with a bunch of ideas too!


·       Any of the Arnold Grummer® paper making kits
·       Blender, strainer, cello sponges and soft towels
·       A sunny window
·       Dies:  Tonic Studios™ #1099E It’s Your Big Day (1 & 2 frame), #1098E Special Occasion (lattice) & #184E Celtic Dream (With Love)
·       Tonic Studios™ Tangerine die cutting and embossing machine
·       Iron (to make the handmade paper smooth)
·       Tonic Studios™ paper trimmer & scissors
·       Tonic Studios™ Craft Tacky Glue
·       Black blank journal (4 ¾ x 6 ¾”)
·       Scrap of black card stock (for pen holder)
·       Black Pen
·       Hand full of Natural colored wooden beads of various shapes and sizes
·       Black heavy thread or thin cord


1.     Follow the instructions found in any of the Arnold Grummer™ paper making kits to create tan slurry and create one or more sheets of heavy weight tan handmade paper.  (I always make extra!)
2.     Allow the paper to dry.
3.     Iron the paper to make it smooth.
4.     Die cut the sentiment and frame/lattice piece from the heavy weight handmade paper.
5.     Attach the die cuts to the front of the book cover with the Tonic Craft Tacky glue.
6.     Measure the circumference of the pen. Cut the black card stock long enough to hold the pen and glue the black piece to the back inside cover of the book. Place the pen in the holder.
7.     Thread one piece of the cord/thread through the spine of the book. Tie and leave tales at the top.
8.     Cut random length pieces of the cord/thread.
9.     Insert the pieces of cord/thread into various sizes and shapes of wooden beads tying in between each bead. Vary the type of bead and distance between each bead.
10.  Repeat this for as many “dangles as you want. ( I used 5 strings folded in approx.. half)
11.  Attach the beaded cords/threads at the top of the book spine.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Traveling Skewer Book

©Anne Rita Taylor 2016
Taking a trip by car, boat or plane? During down time - you can think great thoughts or have interesting conversations with Questions from the Traveling Skewer Book.

Two pieces of handmade paper - 5 1/2 by 8 1/2 inches
Two pieces of color coordinated paper -  5 1/2 by 8 1/2 inches
2 pieces of ribbon - 15 inches each
Twelve questions to ask while traveling - see below.

Prepare two signatures: 
One piece of handmade paper and one piece of coordinated paper each.
Punch holes in both signatures an inch from the top and bottom.

Place a skewer inside each signature.
Thread the ribbon from the outside into the first signature, around the skewer and out.
Repeat for the second signature using the same ribbon.
Snug up the ends, creating a tight tension.

Tie a knot, make a bow.
Repeat for the other hole.
Snip sharp ends of the skewers.

Use double sided tape to adhere
your questions, such as:
What do you daydream about?
What are your favorite crayon colors?
Did you have something funny happen on a trip?
Which author living or dead would you like to meet?
What would you like to sell in a TV commercial?
What do you miss the most when away from home?

What was your all-time favorite vacation?
If you opened a restaurant what is your house specialty?
What's your favorite fast food meal?
Which would you give up - if you had to - pizza, hamburgers or hot dogs?
What would you perform in a talent show?
Would you rather live in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago or San Francisco?

Actually I prefer Houston, Texas!

Skewer Books are quick to make! Interesting quotes you add inside make a nice gift too.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Spring Mixed Media Piece

  I love spring, everything is new again. Grass is growing, leaves are growing on trees, flowers are popping up from the ground and new life is coming with the birth of baby birds, fawn, baby cows and every other animal is giving new life. I LOVE spring.
   Our Plum tree is always the first to bloom and if we have a good rain when it is in full bloom, you just have to walk out the back door and the whole yard smells beautiful. When the flowers on that start to die, the apple/crabapple tree comes into full bloom. And what a beautiful site that is and then the front yard smells beautiful and then when that starts to die, we have other things that start to bloom. It seems there is something blooming all spring, I love it.
   Today, I made a mixed media piece that I used paper castings on, they are leaves, of course. I am sure that most of you have heard the poem.....


I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast;

A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;

A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;

Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.

Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

I have always loved that poem ever since I was a small child.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Art Deco Quilt Square I

© Michele Emerson-Robert 2016

I have a close friend who is an avid quilter. When I first saw this die set from Tonic Studios™ I knew that I would create some “quilt squares” as gifts for her. This is the first of three (so far). I know she will love them, and they will be perfect to hang on her quilt studio wall. I will be creating them in a neutral color palette of medium blue and golden tan. And since I will be using some items that would normally be tossed, I am doing my part to follow Arnold’s “R’s”: recycle, restyle, repurpose, revamp, restore, renew!



  1. Follow the directions found in any of the Arnold Grummer papermaking kits or books to create golden tan slurry.
  2. Create one or more (I needed three sheets since I was making three matching projects sheets of handmade paper).
  3. Allow the paper to dry.
  4. Create a 8 ½ x 8 ½ x 8 ½” ½” (deep) box top and bottom (remember to make the bottom of the box an 1/8” smaller than the top).
  5. Place the box lid on the box bottom creating a closed box.
  6. When the golden tan paper is dry, cut it to the size of the box top.
  7. Use the punch to notch the corners of the paper. Set it aside.
  8. Cut the medium blue paper to 8 ¼” square.
  9. Measure and lightly mark the center of the blue paper.
  10. Repeat marking the middle of all 4 side of the paper.
  11. Determine which end of the “diamond” shaped Art Deco die you want in the center of the quilt square.
  12. Place the die at one of the marked places, tape it so it will not shift when cutting, run it through the machine.
  13. Repeat this step 5 more times, lining up the pencil marks each time.
  14. Layer and glue the blue die cut paper into the notched golden tan handmade paper.
  15. Attach the layered paper to the box lid.
  16. When you decide which direction to hang the quilt square (Star of David or regular star quilt block) add a hanger to the back of the box.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Can you make a difference?.

Yes, YOU can!

 One ton of recycled paper saves: 
• 4,100 kWh of electricity. • 380 gallons of oil. • 54 million Btu’s of energy. • 4.6 cubic yards of landfill space. • 7,000 gallons of water. • 17 trees 

wow, right?

It all begins with not wanting to waste paper, be it scraps of colored paper leftover from a project or junk mail. I try and celebrate Earth Day every day of the year, a person in the United States uses more than 700 pounds of paper every year. • Paper in the U.S. represents one of the biggest components of solid waste in landfills – 26 million tons (or 16% of landfill solid waste) 

Americans throw away 4.5 million tons of office paper each year!

Sometimes I throw all the colors together and sometimes I separate the colors into their own piles and I am the first to say that the colors I can make are gorgeous. I love reusing the papers and making pulp. I love to look at the pulp, I love to take pictures of the might say I am a pulp-oholic!

Recycling paper takes 60% less energy than making paper from raw materials. 

But the real fun comes when you pour the pulp into your mold and lift it out of the water and get to see what you made, the texture, the colors and sometimes the little surprises make each batch unique. And there is no messing up because you can always re-cycle the paper back and try again!

So why not celebrate every day as Earth Day? Do you know that 10,000 trees are cut down annually in China to make holiday cards? And that 3 cubic yards of landfill space can be saved by one ton of recycled paper...just think of how much you can contribute to helping by re-cyling scraps and junk mail! 
YOU can make a difference!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Quit Throwing Your Money Away

You need a card for a birthday gift. You could run to the store and spend a lot of money for a card or YOU COULD MAKE ONE! It is so easy and Arnold Grummer's has just the thing to help you get this done quickly and easily!!

There is a template for making gift cards and envelopes! You put the template between the Pour Handmold and the screen.

Pour your pulp into the box just as you would to make paper. Once you have drained enough water and removed the box, gently lift the template off.  Proceed to use the sponge, blocks and couch sheets to remove the excess water. Dry using your favorite method.

Now use the folding guide, make the envelope and card. You can make these to match your gift wrap, you can add flower petals, and even stamp on them!

I made several so I would have extras on hand!

These are the perfect hand made addition to any gift for any occasion!!

Supplies used:

Pour Handmold and  Template  - available at Arnold Grummer

Medium Pour Handmold ContentsCards & Tags Medium Template Collection

Thank you for joining me today and I hope you take time to visit the store and stop by our Facebook page!

Friday, April 15, 2016

Scottish Thistle

©Michele Emerson-Roberts 2016

Happy April! Time for flowers to bloom and the weather to get warmer! Yep, I admit it - I do not like to be cold. Each year as the temperature rises, I start getting the urge to get outside and start the paper making process. I will spend a whole day just creating beautiful sheets of handmade paper and many paper castings. This gets repeated many times during the year so that I have a stash on hand. I get a head start on the many projects that are created during the year. The Scottish Thistle is one of my favorite paper molds available from Arnold Grummer.


·       Any of the Arnold Grumme paper making kits
·       A sunny window
·       Blender, strainer, cello sponges and soft towels
·       Scraps of yellow paper (think junk mail, etc.)
·       AG’s Scottish Thistle mold #R009
·       White card stock (folded) to create a 5 ¼ square card
·       Envelope to fit card
·       Tonic Studios™ Craft Tacky™ glue, double sided foam tape
·       Scor-Pal™
·       Die: Tonic #209E Celtic Dream Layering set
·       Tonic Studios™ Tangerine die cutting and embossing machine
·       Tonic Studios™ Nuvo Mousse # 804N Mother of Pearl
·       Light Yellow water base ink pad (match the color of the handmade paper)
·       ColorBox™ Stylus handle & tip

1.     Follow the instructions found in any of the Arnold Grummer™ paper making kits to create one or more sheets of medium weight yellow handmade paper.  (Create more sheets if you are going to make numerous cards… sheet will make the liners for 4 cards.) 
2.     Create more slurry and cast one or more of the Scottish Thistles.
3.     Allow the casting and sheets of paper to dry.
4.     Score and fold the white cardstock to create a 5 ¼” square card.
5.     Center the (second from the center) Celtic Dream round die on the card and die cut the design.
6.     Lightly apply the yellow ink around the outside edge of the card.
7.     When the ink is dry, apply the Mother of Pearl Nuvo Mousse lightly to the front of the card and the Scottish Thistle part of the paper casting.
8.     Attach the yellow liner to the inside of the card front with glue.
9.     Attach the Paper casting to the center front of the card with double sided foam tape.

To mail any card with a paper casting, place it inside a padded envelope. I know the postage is a bit more but it will get there in perfect condition.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Folded Paper Pouch

©Anne Rita Taylor 2016

I made these pouches for each person in my writing group. With a list of words we used as prompts for writing an essay. After writing for 15 minutes, we would read to the group what we wrote - fun!
Blender, strainer, sponges, towels
Scissors, bone folder
24 inch ribbon
Rubber stamp for front of Pouch, see my Carving Images for Prints for carving instructions
Journal prompt words: Recognition, Honesty, Routine, Assertive, Productivity, Profound, Silence, Respect, Rebellious, Unique, Legendary, Expansive, Achievement, Harmony, Hope

  • Follow instructions in the Arnold Grummer Paper Making Kit
  • Cut handmade paper into an 8 inch square
  • Fold into triangle using the bone folder; Open and fold into opposite side triangle
  • Turn the paper over
  • Fold in thirds again using the bone folder to measure: 2 & 5/8 inches
  • Open and fold the other way into thirds again; the bone folder makes the creases sharper
  • Open and collapse it together 
  • Fold in middle parts on opposite sides
  • Push it together gently
  • Punch hole in one end
  • Tie knot on the inside 
  • Wrap ribbon around and loop through ribbon to tie another knot outside.

Makes a fun wrapper for a small gift too - a lovely way to use handmade paper!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Birthday Card

I can't believe April is almost half over with already. The past week we have had a hail storm and 2 days with heavy snow falling and 1 day of 70 degree weather.....what!?!?! changes every day and you never know what you will get LOL

I have a very important birthday coming up in May, my oldest sons. Now let me explain a little about my family. I was born on my Grandfathers (my moms dad) birthday, my first born was born on Mothers Day which also happened to fall on my moms birthday. I was hoping we could continue this "tradition" but not going to happen. Oh well, he still deserves a handmade card and today I used my handmade paper to make it.

I added the multicolor button because of his personality. He is so well loved by so many people because of his sense of humor. My other two children are more layed back than he is, his life is one big party every day, as it should be.

Thanks for stopping by and don't forget to check out the Arnold Grummer's paper making store here for all your handmade paper making tools and kits.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Sew Perfect Mending Box

© Michele Emerson-Robert 2016

We all have a bit of mending to do, having quick supplies handy is a good idea, such as needles, several spools of different colors of thread, and a small pair of scissors handy is good. Keeping it in a lovely container is even better! Since Arnold not only promoted making paper, but also encouraged using things instead of tossing them, I am happy to follow his lead.


  • Empty large frozen pizza box (inside is tan chipboard)
  • Scraps of glossy black card stock to die cut (I used the backing from some embossing folders packaging)
  • Dies: Tonic Studios™ “Patchwork Perfection” #1186E Vineyard Squares and 1185E Everyday Squares and layering squares
  • Decorative hatpins or corsage pins for the top of the box
  • Needles, small spools of thread, small pair of scissors, tape measure
  • Tonic Studios™ Craft Tacky Glue™
  • ½” 3” square tan foam for pin cushion
  • Tonic Studios™  Super Trimmer #153E and scissors
  • Ruler. pencil
  • Scor-Pal™
  • Tonic Studios™ Tangerine die cutting and embossing machine


  1. Measure, mark and cut the pizza box to create a 3 ¼” cube box top and bottom (the lid should be  1/8” larger than the bottom.
  2. Center, tape and cut one of the layering squares onto the top of the box lid.
  3. Construct the box bottom and top (lid).
  4. Die cut all 4 of the designs from the Patchwork Perfect Vineyard Squares set, and the filigree die from the Everyday Squares set from the glossy black card stock.
  5. Attach the die cuts to the sides and top of the box top.
  6. Glue the tan foam to the inside top of the box top (it will be the pin cushion).
  7. Place the small pair of scissors, tape measure, needles and spools of thread into the box.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Thank you very MOO-ch!

Deckle division rocks!
"Deckle division is simply dividing your hand mold's deckle into two or more compartments."

I got this idea from the Trash To Treasure book, pp. 108-9 to blend 2 different colored pulps together. It's a little hard to see in this picture but the bottom ½ of the card is green and the top ½ is blue. They run together so smoothly that it's hard to see where one ends and one begins! 

Arnold tells you how to make your own deckle divider out of foam core but I found that by adding duck tape to it added a lot more strength and it lasts a lot longer this way. Make sure that the end that lays against the paper screen is flat and even so the pulp cannot mix together before you are ready to have it do so. I also found that drawing an arrow to which way it should be inserted into the mold helps too. You also want to make sure it is a snug fit, and the duct tape can help "fatten" the divider up if you need assistance.

I also added a little sun by doing some pulp painting.
Trash to Treasure pp. 84-7 )
 To accent the sun I sewed around it and added some rays.

Thanks for visiting and don't forget we are having a spring press sale!

Monday, April 4, 2016

April Showers

As we all know, April showers bring May flowers. Here in Michigan we have had more than our share of showers. And, it is early but I do have a few daffodils peeking out! Since it was too cold and wet to be outside, I played with paper and made a card.  

I was inspired by the rain and this quote about April showers. I grabbed an old dictionary and made several pieces of paper. I was excited to be able to see words in the paper. You can achieve this result but not pulsing the pulp as much.

Next I grabbed some Twinkling H2O Paints and painted one sheet pink and one green. I did not worry if the coverage was complete. 

I used my Spellbinders Die D-Lites dies to cut the flower petals and leaves. The background is watercolor paper which I painted with a sky and grass. I assembled my flowers using glue. I made a progression from a leaf to a bud to a full flower. The quote was printed on the pink paper.  Here is a close up of the fun details! Don't you love how it looks? 

So if you are stuck inside while it is raining and looking for something to keep the kids occupied, I recommend MAKING PAPER!!

Pour Handmold available at Arnold Grummer 

Medium Pour Handmold Contents

Visit us on Facebook for more ideas and tips and to share what you have made!