Wednesday, September 5, 2012

let's get crafty! and eat!

my friend andrea and i got together the other day to get our creativity on.  andrea has an awesome blog, pie birds, buttons, and muddy puddles.  i love everything she makes.  she shares recipes and craft projects and has a lot of terrific ideas for gifts!

since andrea and i literally live about .1 mile away from each other, it was a no brainer to enjoy each others' company and get crafty!  and andrea totally spoiled me...she had a snack for us too!

so, what did we make?

fabric covered composition books!  andrea found this and thought it was a great idea.  why not add a little fun and funk to a boring old composition book?!

you'll need as many composition books as you want to cover and as many different fabrics as you want to use!  and...something i'd never used before - spray adhesive!

{image via}

first, lay your notebook down on a piece of fabric.  you'll want to cut the fabric around the notebook, leaving about 1/2" around the edge.  that's gonna get tucked around the cover, like you can see how i folded the edge and corners over on this photo:

once you get the fabric cut to the right size, use the spray adhesive on the fabric.  using continuous motion, about 8-10 inches from the fabric, spray the adhesive right onto the fabric.  and now you need to move kinda quickly.

lay the fabric down and place the notebook on it.  you could have it open and adjust from there, or do what i did...just placed the closed notebook on one side of the fabric...make sure it was nice and smooth, and then pulled the fabric around the other side of the notebook, making sure it's smooth.  (there is a little wiggle room with the spray adhesive...but the more you peel and re-stick, the less permanent the adhesive becomes.  so the faster you work, the longer the fabric will stick.)

side note:  please just don't notice the quality of these pictures.  they were taken with my cell phone, that i promptly sprayed with the adhesive.  oops!

let's look at the picture from above again, shall we?

once you have the fabric covering the outside of the notebook, you want to cut small slits at the binding.  you can see at the bottom of the photo i have the slit cut out, and at the top i've already started folding the fabric over the cover.

just take each corner and fold it over the cover...

and then take the edge and fold that over the cover...kinda like wrapping a present!

next, you'll take another kind of fabric, or a pretty paper, and cut out a piece to fit on the inside cover...covering the edges of the fabric from the front!  we used fabric for this, but paper would definitely be easier to get a clean edge.

and just use the spray adhesive like before, carefully place the fabric (or paper) on the inside cover...and voila!  you have a lovely fabric covered composition book!

here's the cover...

here's the inside front cover...

and here's the inside back cover...

a fun spin on a boring old notebook, dontcha think?!

both andrea and i each made two.  i made this one with the birds for myself, but andrea had this great robot i made one as a gift for a little friend of mine.  (his little brother is turning one very soon, so i figured i'd bring the big brother a little gift to the party too!  some colored pencils and a fabric covered notebook?  sounds good to me!)

isn't that adorable?!  i love that the fabric (or paper) you use on the inside is like a fun little surprise when you open up the notebook!

this was our first time using spray adhesive and i think it was a success!  these notebooks are great because you can customize the design!  if you're making one for your grandma, maybe you'll use a flowery pattern...if you're making one for someone who hunts, you could use camouflage...the possibilities are endless!

the notebook i made for myself has already been put to use.  i found another blog, called today's letters, and i was inspired.  the author and her husband have this journal they keep just for the two of them.  they write letters back and forth to each other and then challenge each other by hiding the notebook when their entry is complete.  they admit that their marriage takes work and the notebook full of letters is part of that work.  they use it as a communication tool and to affirm and encourage one another.

i loved the idea and made it happen.  i love writing and often find that the time it takes to write your thoughts gives you the inspiration to really get the words right.  speaking is also a great communication tool, but its happening right it's hard to sit back and think about how your words are coming out.  so, i'm excited about our new adventure with the journal!

anyway...back to andrea and i.  we had a blast making the notebooks and chatting to catch up on all things andrea and andrea.  (it's kinda funny having the same name!  her totally adorable boys, jack and ethan, got a big kick out of it too!)

and i mentioned she made us a snack...and it was delicious!

warm black bean dip!

andrea found this recipe on pinterest and whipped up some of this delicious dip.  it was so yummy and i can't wait to have it again.  it has mexican flavor, which i love.  here's the recipe from one perfect bite:


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil + more for baking dish
2 medium tomatoes, cored and cut into medium dice
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided use
1 large yellow onion, finely diced
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 (15.5-oz.) cans black beans, rinsed and drained well
2 canned chipotles en adobo, minced (about 1 tablespoon), plus 3 tablespoons adobo sauce from can
1 to 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1-1/2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (if frozen, thaw first)
1-1/2 cups (6 oz.) grated sharp cheddar cheese
1-1/2 cups (6 oz.) grated monterey jack cheese
3/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
freshly ground black pepper
tortilla chips for serving


1) heat oven to 425 degrees. grease a 1-1/2 qt. baking dish with oil and line a baking sheet with foil. set the tomatoes in a colander over the sink and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt.
2) heat oil in a large (12-inch) skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. reduce heat to medium, add onion, sprinkle with reserved 1 teaspoon salt, and cook, stirring, until softened and translucent, about 4 to 6 minutes. add garlic and chili powder and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. add half of black beans, chipotles and adobo sauce, and 3/4 cup water and bring to a boil. cook until liquid reduces by about half, 2 to 3 minutes.
3) transfer bean mixture to a food processor, add vinegar, and process until smooth. let cool for a couple of minutes and then transfer to a large bowl. add rest of beans, tomatoes, corn, half of each of cheeses, and 1/2 cup of cilantro. mix well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
4) transfer to baking dish and sprinkle with remaining cheese. bake on a foil-lined baking sheet (to catch drips) until cheese melts and browns around edges, about 15 minutes (longer if refrigerated). sprinkle with remaining cilantro and serve with warm tortilla chips for dipping.
yield: 10 to 12 servings.

doesn't it look delicious?!

{image via}

and as if that delicious snack wasn't enough...andrea also spoiled me with her homemade iced green tea.   go on over to her blog and check out the recipe!  it was delicious...and decaf!  so the fact that i was drinking (several glasses of it) during the evening was okay!  i'm looking forward to making some for myself!

so...have you made anything lately?  anything covered in fabric?  or smothered in cheese?

=) andrea

1 comment:

  1. awesome post! we did have a great time. so when are we doing it again? :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...