Monday, March 19, 2012

How to make the useless more useful- thrifty papercrafting 101

I have a lot of random, useless-seeming supplies. As a craft-hoarder, I had to find a use for them.
  • Foam Sheets- OK, STILL not sure why I bought these, except they were a huge pack on clearance. They have come in handy as dimensionals. I use adhesive to stick a bit of foam between layers to 'pop' them off the page. Much cheaper than 'pop dots', and I can cut any size I need- from teeny-tiny to 4x5 inches.
  • Charms/ Beads- Charms can be strung on ribbon, or added to a bow for a new look. Tiny seed beads work well in shaker boxes, and larger beads can be used in the center of a bow.
  • Baker's Twine- I loved the look, but not the price, of baker's twine marketed to papercrafters. So I headed over to the cake decorating aisle of my craft store, and found Wilton Baker's Twine. Sure, it was only in three colors- red, black, and yellow, but it was less than half the price. Use it to tie on embellishments, like beads, or even sew it into your paper projects.
  • Packaging- Any time I buy something craft-related, it usually comes with a bit of 'oaktag' or thick cardboard backing, and a plastic domed front. The backing, I use to thicken up my ATCs (Artist Trading Cards), bookmarks, and my Inchies. I have also used cereal boxes, but the packaging pieces are usually a better size to work with.
  • Old Books- There are two schools of thought. One the one hand, if a book is decent enough to be readable, I do not destroy it. But I did have four different dictionaries in my house, and one was a really lousy student version. I have since cut it apart, and use the definitions on my projects. If it was a hardcover, I probably would have hollowed out the pages inside and made an altered book.
  • Instant Coffee- I wet down some paper and 'watercolored' a light wash of coffee and water. Then, I sprinkled on a few granules while it was still wet. This coffee produced an awful cup to drink, but pretty paper to work with.

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