Hello friends! As summer comes to a close, one can't help but want to remember days adventuring at the beach. I love to create mini-books that house my photos and mementos from vacations... and I don't have to look far for finding something to create with – but for this keepsake... I've raided my pantry and refrigerator!
A set of vintage by the sea stamps by Rubber Dance Art Stamps are inspiration for the theme of my project which will be housed in a recycled cheese box that was in the refrigerator. I also raided my pantry for some paper boxes to serve as a sturdy base for pages.
I began by gently peeling off the package labeling to give me a blank slate to work with.
I measured a circle to fit inside the box and cut a template to trace out front and back pages from the recycled cookies/cracker boxes and from the corrugated packaging.
Then I distressed the outside of the box and both sides of the pages with an acrylic/gesso mix and also some spray mists – this gives a real white-washed beachy feel.
I also distressed some sheer organza ribbon and white cheesecloth with distress stains and spray mists... using them to mop up all the glittery goodness from the sprayed pages along the way.
I adhered some double-sided sheet adhesive cut to fit the pages and began to assemble my mini book. I sandwiched the ribbon and cheesecloth between the pages – adding some double-sided tape to the top of the ribbon to lock them in place when I adhere the top page.
Between the pages, I added some knotted natural green dyed raffia.
I even used a recycled envelope for ephemera... nothing goes to waste! I distressed in the same fashion as the pages and adhered using circle cut double-stick adhesive sheets. I'm normally a glue-stick girl, but after all the painting and distressing, the double-sided adhesive makes assembly quick and easy.
I stamped my images using brown dye ink onto creme cardstock primed with the same acrylic/gesso base as everything else; then tearing each image out and distressing edges with chalk inks to complete the vintage weathered feel.
I layered onto the corrogated pages a section of distressed cheesecloth and one image adhered with tacky glue.
I added some antique gold dewdrop ink to the inside of the box and layered one of the images to the base, and blending the hard edge of the envelope and white box with the corrugated border around the sides... WOW this is so lovely!
Now for some finishing touches! A resin cast sand dollar colored with spray mists and antique gold ink; a recycled dry cleaning tag; section of cheesecloth; raffia stands; and some real mini seashells to complete the scene.
I accordion fold the book into a stack and nestle it nicely into the box. It's all grungy and weathered and looks like it's just washed ashore!
Memories by the Sea...
This cheese box has been transformed completely – one would never guess what it was when I began. Keep a lookout in your pantry, the fridge and your recycling for amazing and interesting things to upcycle into something beautiful and useful! I even have space leftover to add some of my vacation photos from Jamaica last fall.
I hope you have enjoyed my recycled stamped creation – I truly enjoyed making this keepsake. What would you recycle for use as a summertime keepsake?
Thanks for visiting! :) Sb