Monday, February 27, 2012

Design Team Challenge-Altered Composition Book

Our design team challenge this week was to take our flower from the previous challenge, and incorporate it into an altered composition book. 
I began with a standard black and white composition book.  My first process was to unthread the pages from the cover, and remove the binding tape from the spine.  From here, I now had 2 covers, rather than one continuous cover.  I split the interior pages in half and trimmed them down from the middle a bit to get rid of the thread holes.
I scored and cut 2 12”x12” pieces of black cardstock with circles from DCVWs “The Black Currant Collection.” (This is an awesome stack of paper.  It incorporates Black with a Red Currant color (purplish violetish reddish color, lol).  Most of the paper is embossed and shiney, but not glittery.)  I used rubber cement to apply the paper to the covers of the book.  I then cut down two pieces of textured black core cardstock to create the coversheet for the inside of the covers.  When creating a custom cover, I like to use this to hide the rough seems and cuts.  The difference this one piece of paper makes-is remarkable.  It takes sloppy and brings it up to highly polished.  Then, I began to cut my embellishments.  I cut a silhouette using my Forever Young cartridge, at 5”.  I then cut with a piece of plain white stock, the accompanying dress.  I then used this as my pattern and cut the dress from a remaining piece of fused, red plastic to coordinate with the rose.  I made the original rose very dirty and grungy looking.  I was afraid my whole notebook would have to look dirty.  Before I did any finishing techniques, I laid it out on the cover, and the black and red balanced nicely with the one grunge element, and since it was a stand-alone element the way I was using it, I thought it worked nicely.  I have a really awesome black grosgrain ribbon with white stiches down each side and rhinestone like sequins in the middle.  I used a small length of it, and trimmed the stitches on the side off and adhered as the belt.
I then used Accent Essentials to cut the background from DCVW “Life Quotes” page.  I also have this beautiful black and silver damask fabric paper.  I wanted to incorporate the pattern, but this stuff is goldhard to find, and never cheap when you do!  I have found to preserve the originals, that I can use a nice 98 bright cardstock and using the copy in my projects.  This even works with fabric, and die cuts, I edit to change the look a bit.  I also do this with my true finds, like some 1940s sheet music I just recently found at a yard sale. I used my Xyron 5” adhesive to apply the papers to each other and to the cover.  At this point, I knew I would need to bind.  Some people get carried away and try to save the binding for last.not with 3-D embellishments.  You need to get it out of the way once your spacing is figured out.  I used my Bind-It-All and a ½” binding comb.  I needed to clip about 2” of the binding comb off. (Don’t throw these away!  They are awesome to use for mini albums or odd-shaped albums)  Once the composition book was rebound, I used 3-D Zots to adhere my dressed silhouette to the quote background I then took four glass crystals and hung them with a large jump-ring from the four openings at the bottom of the birdcage (cut with Bloom cartridge) I used silver jewelry chain and looped it around a brad, and joined both ends to the top of the birdcage.  I then placed my rose over the brad.  I used black lace trim and adhered to the opening side of the journal with dabs of hot glue, and threaded it thru the spine for balance.  VoilaI have transformed this Plain Jane composition book into a creative jourrnal I will be pleased to doodle and plan in!

I must credit Joy at Joy’s Life for the wonderful silhouette idea.  Her version of an altered composition book can be found at  I just love looking at what others have done, and finding my own definitiona little challenge within a challenge.  All of our projects can be seen on our Kari’s Purplies Design Team blog at  Please also visit the rest of our Design Team members blogs and see what they have created in their own rendition.
Sr. Design Team
Kimberly Pate ~
Shawnee Penkacik -
Zenita Smith --
Lynne Kirsch -
Susan E Bermudez -
Tina Keller-
Carolyn Phillips
Jr. Design Team
Rachelle Larsen-
Lisa Woodward-
Andrea Stradley-
Jackie Lodge-

Thanks so much for stopping by and Happy Crafting!
Lisa Woodward


  1. I would have never thought of taking my notebook apart like you have done. What a wonderful idea. I absolutely love the idea you have come up with for your notebook. Love how you tied her dress in with that flower using the same materials.


  2. um......WOW! You made the binding process sound almost easy enough for me to try it! I love the spiral. The worst thing about the composition notebook is that you can't flip the front around to the back for writing quick fabulous ideas. You really rocked this!

  3. The only thing I can say is WOW ! this is so cool. I love it Lisa. you done an incredible job TFS !

  4. Your journal is awesome! Very Sassy!!!