Friday 6 July 2012

To digi or not to digi?

My friend Anita van Hal has brought out a whole line of digital backgrounds for art journaling.  Keep reading non-digi people.

I don’t really do digi.  I don’t own the software for it.  Although it is possible to use Publisher for putting text over a background but you can’t do layering properly.

The great thing about Anita’s backgrounds is that you can use them in whatever way suits you.  You can use them digitally or print them out.  And once you’ve printed them out you can use them as a whole sheet of paper or cut them up.  Endless possibilities.

Today I used her new set which was published on July 4th based on the Stars and Stripes.  

I printed the backgrounds on cartridge paper.  I would have liked to use watercolour paper but my printer doesn’t like thicker paper.

I decided to make a book so I printed the 12 sheets and then chose one to cut up for embellishments and one to be the cover.

With the other 10 sheets I cut them all to the same size.  In my case 8” x 10½”.  You can cut yours to whatever size you wish – it depends what size you chose to print them out!  The cutting and sticking need to be as accurate as possible.

Fold each of the 10 sheets in half with the printed side inside, decide the order you want the pages to be in your book and then stick them together.  

Take one folded sheet and put double-sided tape along all the edges and then using a glue stick glue all over the page including the tape.  Take the next folded page and match it up at the spine and smooth down.  Continue to do this with each folded sheet.

The joy of this book making method is that the book lies flat on which ever page you open so it is excellent for working in.  I learned this technique from the lovely Dyan.  Thanks Dyan.

Cut two sheets of thin card – I recycled the card envelopes a book came in from Amazon.  You could use a cereal packet.  If you made a book with more pages in it you might need thicker card.  I stuck the card onto the book in the same way as all the pages.

Cut a piece of sticky back canvas the length of your book.  Measure the width of the book’s spine and add an inch for  the width of your canvas.  At this point you could ink or paint the canvas.  I left mine plain.

Peel off the backing of the canvas and place it sticky side up.   Put the spine of your book in the middle of the canvas and pull the book down onto the canvas.  Then put the book down onto the other side on the sticky side of the canvas.  Smooth the canvas to make it stick to the card covers.


Cut the sheet you put aside for the cover to the size you need.  I decided not to go right up to the edge of the book so some of the canvas still shows.  Use double-sided tape and a glue stick as before but this time match your edge to the edge of the book not the spine.

The book is finished ready for use.   

Now what shall I do with it?  You’ll have to come back to find out otherwise this will be a really, really long blog post.

I hope this tutorial has been useful.

Thanks for stopping by.



  1. Thanks for the tutorial - lovely book covers

  2. Ditto what Carolyn said!!!! This is amazing! You really do make the most amazing books, Bernice!!! Thank you SO much for sharing your process and bringing my pages to life! Love and hugs!

  3. Love your blog, Bernice!!!!

  4. I'm definitely in the non-digi camp, but I love what you did here. I also really like the post you did last week where you put chipboard pieces on and gessoed over them (catching up on my blog reading today!).

  5. This looks fab. I will definitely have a go.


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