Way back in April last year, AJ brought some Enid Blyton books to Camp Coochie to pass on to any of us who wanted them. I grabbed a couple because if there is one thing I love in my mixed media, it’s book pages, and the yellower and more well loved, the better! They sat on my shelf for a while, until a twitter friend who has apparently heard of my weakness for anything that is vaguely sort of something like a challenge, linked me up to a very cool altered book. I bookmarked the page and the printable house template, and started thinking about what I actually wanted my version to look like. In the end, I decided it would be perfect for Butterfly’s room, and of course, the “fierce” quote from Shakespeare was the perfect fit – this girl of mine packs a mighty punch of personality for the tiny little package she looks! I mixed-media-d the book pages to suggest a garden/lawn for the bottom page, and a rich warm sky in sunset tones…even if the sun is still in the sky! The pages of the book itself I glued together with just a glue stick, and as you can see from the curling on the corners, I wasn’t exactly fussy with making sure my coverage was perfect. But I think it adds a certain amount of character to it, don’t you?
Back when I first started this project, I attempted a plain, kraft card house. I measured up and cut it out, using the original as a guide, and stuck it together. The roof wasn’t great, but it would do. Or so I thought, until I tried to add roof-tile-like texture using some home made modelling past and the moisture curled the roof straight off the house! I wasn’t long after this I shelved the project and went on to something different (surprise surprise) because it all felt too hard. Every now and then I would think about it, and during my big declutter recently I came across some (lots) of our leftover wedding invitation vellum. Pro tip – don’t do rough calculations in your head as you stand in a shop in front of the paper selection. To say we over ordered is an understatement! The shimmery gold roses would be the perfect wall cladding for a delicate fairy book house. It was then not until I cleaned up my studio and stacked up my mini book WIP pile that I was motivated to dig out the paper, download the printable and get. it. done. Except, of course, vellum is transparent and shows printing, doesn’t it? Thankfully most of the printing is hidden by the creases of the corners, aside from the top join, and a couple of pieces of purple washi fixed that!
The finishing touch was the flowers. Originally I’d planned some millinery French-style fabric flowers, but time and resource constraints sent me in a different direction. I found a great list of paper flower tutorials on Pinterest, and of course the book page option immediately caught my eye. I pulled out my battered copy of Persuasion, that I own solely for crafting purposes, and got busy. The post didn’t seem to link to a tutorial (the author says in the comments that she linked a tutorial but I couldn’t find it?), so I winged it, and after one false start, I quickly worked out the ideal proportions for the flowers, and before long had two cute paper flowers and more than two slightly singed, hot-glued fingers. I may still add something in that back left corner, but I’m not entirely sure what yet, so for now, it is on her dressing table and considered finished. Yay!
An Enid Blyton book with a Shakespeare quote and Jane Austen flowers – the perfect project for a bookworm’s little girl’s bedroom, don’t you think?