Thursday, August 27, 2020

Make Beautiful Memories - Little Book of Happy Thoughts

Hello everyone,

Today I have this little heart shaped book to share with you.

Getting Started

I will be using this little heart shaped chipboard called Book of Love Heart Mini Album (D117K) and a lot of recycled/saved papers from my stash.

The first steps are very simple and are shown above.  I taped each pair of half hearts together to make one heart shape, using masking tape.  Then used the same technique to tape each pair of hearts to the other pairs of hearts to make the little book.  I was going to cover my book with watercolour paper so so before going any further I measured a piece of watercolour paper that was slightly larger than my heart covers, leaving a gap in the middle where my pages would be.  This is important to allow the book to open flat.  Next, I painted all the visible sides with white gesso to give me a white base from which to start.  No need to gesso to any parts that will not be seen in the finished book.

The next step is to look through your stash and select some papers you want to use for collage.  I keep mine in this basket because I can see them and because I can see them, I end up using them more than I would if they were hidden away in a box or a drawer.  I will also be using this soft matte gel for all the collage.

For my little heart shaped pages, I decided to make each page spread a different colour working vaguely in rainbow order.  So as you can see below, the first page is yellow, the second is orange, and then the third is red.  For some reason I forgot to take a red page photo but I do have a photo of the red/pink papers I used for the collage and you can see a little bit of the red page peeking out below in the bottom right of the photo.  Don't worry, I did at least remember to take photos of each finished page!

For each page, I chose papers from my stash, all recycled, and including book pages, magazine pages, gift wrap, tissue paper and some gelli prints I made last year.  Since I had some little bits of book paper, I decided to use them on all of the pages, to bring in some neutral tones and for continuity.

Following on from the red page, I have a green page then a blue page and finally two purple pages.  These two pages form the front and back covers of the book by using the back side of the end pages and the two covers.

Making the cover

Remember the watercolour paper we cut at the start?  Now it's time to use it and put our little book together.  I pulled out more potential collage papers for the outside cover and narrowed it down to just these few.  :)

Place your outside cover pieces on top of the watercolour paper and then put the stack of internal pages in the middle like a book.  This will give you a gap in the middle to leave room for the spine of the book.  There is a bit of adjusting at this point to get it just right, so take your time to get it just how you want it.

Check the size of the cover pieces against the watercolour paper.

Decorate the outside of the cover using the same technique.

As I did with all the inside pages, I also rubbed white gesso into some of the areas in the cover, to make it more cohesive.

There are several ways to attach the cover pieces to the rest of the album, but because of the way I created my book, I am attaching them with washi tape.  Both the front and back pages and cover pieces are purple, so I used purple washi tape.  This is the back page and cover.

Here is the front page and cover.

Make final adjustments on your watercolour paper by fitting the book inside and closing it up, making sure there is enough room allowed for the spine, so the book can open flat.

Additional Decoration

I rubbed some fluid acrylic paint in and around the white gessoed areas on each page and on the cover.  The colour I used was Quin Gold but you can use whatever colour suits your project and colour scheme.

When everything was dry, I also stamped some butterflies and text on the pages and cover. There are no photos of this step but it can be seen in the finished photos. This is really just adding more depth to the background and can be skipped if you don't want to do it. I did my stamping in black Staz-on ink.

Once everything was dry, it was finally time to attach the watercolour paper cover to the book.  Here's a quick look at the cover before I added the additional stamping but after the final measurements and adjustments - you can see I have cut straight across the bottom of the heart and also at the top in the centre.  I folded the watercolour shape in half, then measured the width of the page block, marked the edges and then folded them again, to make it easier to open the book.

Apply glue to the back cover (chipboard) and then line it up with the watercolour paper and press it firmly in place.  Place something heavy on it like I have done here.

When it's dry, repeat with the front cover (chipboard), lining it up again using the lines you made on the watercolour paper.  Trim any excess.

The Finished Book

Now that the book is "finished" what to do with it?   Well for me, I wanted to turn it into a little book of happy thoughts, so I used some word stickers to add happy, positive thoughts to each page and also the front cover.

The book is small enough that it could easily be popped into a handbag and pulled out at times when you might need some positivity in your day.  :)

As for those inside pages, here's a look inside my Little Book of Happy Thoughts.

That's it till next time.  Let me know what you think in the comments and I would love to see your own little book of happy thoughts when you make one, so please share in the Facebook group.

Empire of the Cat

Project Recipe:

Book of Love Heart Mini Album (D117K)  available to purchase from both shops
Collage materials from my stash
Watercolour paper
Masking tape
White gesso
Soft Matte Gel
Black Staz-on ink
Rubber stamps
Word stickers (Tim Holtz and Finnabair)
Washit tape
Black Stabilo-All pencil
Fluid Acrylic paint


  1. Fantastic and wonderful directions one day I will be brave enough and make one of these heart books.

  2. haha I'm sure you would be able to do it with ease. Thanks Jon David :)