Altered Birthday Book

Posted by on Jun 16, 2012 in Fabulous & Free | 0 comments

Recently I’ve been making some new altered books for birthday gifts.  My twist on these gifts is searching for a vintage/antique book that has a title somehow related to the birthday person’s name/life.  I had my own party in an antique store when I found a book entitled, “The Story of Mrs. Murphy”.  It fit perfectly for my friend, Patricia Murphy.  Today’s pictures feature the book I just completed for my sister, Lisa.  Her book is entitled, “The Merry Month of May”.  Can you guess why?  I knew you were a smartie pants.  May 15th is her birthday so I rejoiced at this find.  One of these books takes me about 8 hours to complete. You might be faster at completing a book than I am.  Getting just the right balance on each page takes me some doing.  I’ve completed the last two books marathon style - all in one sitting.  But it could be an ongoing project you work on a bit here and there.  I just work better seeing the whole picture knowing where I’m going.  It takes me jumping in with both feet all at once.  Depending on the number of pages in the book – you can glue several pages together and then measure around that glued stack of pages for a small matchbox.  Cut out the template and insert the matchbox in the cut out and glue pages over the top.  It becomes a small drawer by gluing on a bead to the pull out portion of the matchbox.  My sister’s book didn’t have enough pages by the time I finished a section for each child in her story book – but I did put drawers in Patricia’s book.  One important thing to take note:  When using an old book - never ever scrapbook just one page.  If a book is old – the pages are deteriorating and fragile.  I use a glue stick and glue several pages (at least 5) together to make “one page”.  I hope that makes sense.  The weight of the items on each page will easily tear one page otherwise.  Also, do not use original photos in these books since they are not acid-free. I use computer scanned images or copied photos on a copy machine.  They work great for this purpose.  Other items that are fun to use include bingo cards, dominoes, buttons, ribbons, scrapbook embellishments (I like watch faces), vintage jewelry…the possibilities are countless!  I’m not going to show you Lisa’s entire book as space won’t permit.  but here are a few of the pages from her book.

Birthday book

I punched tags and stamped Lisa's name on the tags to give the book dimension when standing upright - not to mention label the book. This is a childhood photo of Lisa. I glued a scrapbook wooden crown on her head and used antique lace and layered it to look like ruffles over her dress. The photo is mounted to scrapbook paper and adhered to the book cover with low temp hot glue. I made a book mark out of two pieces of vintage lace which I knotted at the top and then tied on a cross from Hobby Lobby.

















Inside cover

Inside the cover I left room for a baby or birthday photo of Lisa's choosing. The chair on the left was glued on the top, bottom and right side only which created a left opening pocket for a pull-out journal card.











Hometown page

I glued the name of our hometown on the right page with scrabble letters. On the left is an antique farmer's elevator receipt to remind Lisa of our Dad's farming roots. I used the same gluing technique as on the inside front cover to create a place for a pull out card.











Pocket page

Here I made a pocket by bending up the bottom right corner at a diagnol. I did this with several pages to make the pocket sturdy. I used some rub-ons and vintage white buttons on the inside of the pocket page. A stamped little girl tag will inspire Lisa to put photos of her best buds from childhood or journal about them and place it in the pocket. The stamped image and red you are seeing under the "best buds" is actually the next page. The left side is a large journal tag that I glued the bottom and two sides creating a vertical pocket. In it is a vintage, unused post card that Lisa can use to journal. A scrapbook giggle sticker and a raised word embellishment complete this page.















First home page

Included in this book are pages for Lisa's elementary, high school and college days - each labeled with the appropriate school along with vintage embellishments (post cards, buttons, vintage lace etc..). Also are a couple of pages for her dating years to my brother-in-law, Randy (they are high school sweethearts) as well as a couple of pages for their wedding. Here is the page for their "first house". Included are a key and a scrapbook card. I wrote "Our first home" on a journal card and left space for a photo. This was the most simple page in the book.














childhood page

This page is symbolic of childhood. Lisa was born on the 15th so I used a page of vintage gold stamps (given out at grocery stores to earn prizes) and a vintage 15 cent price tag to play off her birth date. On the right I created a pocket and used a scrapbook bingo card and attached ribbons to it for a pull out card. As a play off "may flowers" I attached a tag on the bingo card that says "flower child" since Lisa was born in May. I've left room for some photos to be glued over the gold stamps and on the right side since the pull out card can be moved.














Another pocket page

This pocket page on the rigt was made by simply folding in pages on the right to the center. Again I used about 5 pages. Once that was completed and each one glued, I glued along just the top and bottom of the portion you see that has the jewels going down it to create the right side open pocket. I glued a large flower on the base of that page and tucked a journal card into it. On the left is a lace doily I took home from a restaurant that would have been thrown out (it was under my glass). I wrapped it around 5 pages and addeed some simple embellishments and left room for a photo. Remember - glue each page together (about 5 of them) to make one page.















Signature page

I use the book as my "card' and sign either the front or back cover and embellish it. Here I've added a photo of my sister and I as little girls playing outside (how we spent most of our time).











Making altered books is so much fun.  It is time consuming, but I feel the end result is well worth it.  Let me know what you think once you try one.










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