Saturday, December 20, 2008

Teacher Gifts and a Mini Tutorial

My goal to save money and have a "handmade" Christmas, has turned out to be a HUGE pain in my butt! Don't get me wrong, I really don't regret doing it this way...but let me tell ya, it's stressful! Making your gifts is A LOT of work. It is definitely NOT the easy way out. But to be honest, I loved every minute of it. It is so fulfilling to take an ordinary hum drum item and make it beautiful and unique. I think I am finally getting the hang of these clipboards...more or less.

Sorry the pictures are a little out of sequence. I'm tired and don't think I can hold my eyes open for any longer than necessary, so this is what you get! These peppermint sticks dipped in white chocolate are sooooooo yummy with hot chocolate and super easy to make


I remembered half way in to making these that I promised a tutorial, so we are seriously lacking in documentation of the steps...sorry. Basically, I start from the bottom and make my way up. I prefer to use 2 coordinating papers so that my paper piecing at the top around the clip doesn't look hokey. I cut the first 3 pieces and get them adhered. I have found that spray adhesive works the best, especially to prevent bubbling after you mod podge. Also, another helpful tip I've found is to spray your paper and the board for maximum adhesion. (is that a word?)

So now you have worked your way up to the clip with your first three pieces. Now the fun begins!

This is not a precise art. I cut a strip of paper to fit in that space, cut it in half, then trace around the clip onto the paper and cut out the pattern. It is rigged and pieced together, but I don't know that there is any other way to do it. and really, once you get it all fancied up with a big fluffy bow, no one will be able to tell. Now repeat the same process on the back side. I use the same pattern on the back so that it looks uniform. The only difference is that you don't have to worry about that pesky paper piecing. Now take your fingernail and run it along all the edges with as much pressure as you can don't want those edges pulling up, secure it good. Now you are ready to seal it with mod podge. I put on the first coat and let it dry, then apply a second coat for good measure. Once that is dry, take a credit card and smooth out any bubbles.

I use about 1 yard of gorgeous ribbon and tie a big ol' bow around the clip. You could also hot glue it on there too...whatever floats your boat. have a beautiful one of a kind, custom clipboard sure to tickle the fancy of any teacher!

Ooooh, oooohh...I forgot one thing. Before you mod podge, you must take care of the corners. If you will notice they are rounded corner and your paper is square. I have a very easy solution for ridding the corners of that teeny bit of excess paper. Take a piece of sandpaper and just sand those edges right off. It works like a charm. It literally cuts it right off...perfectly every time! The bonus is that you get that lovely distressed cute!

Let me know if you have any questions. I am sure that I left out something important. Like I said...very tired. This explains the spelling errors too. Please forgive and love me anyway.


Mandi Shandi said...

Girl! You are preaching to the choir about making your own gifts. It is crunch time and still so many to make.

About the clipboards, looks like you said it all to me. The best tip is the spray adhesive part. Mine are coming out much better now.

I am gonna try those peppermint sticks for sure! A perfect goodie with the mugs and cocoa mix I did. Thanks!

Mandi Shandi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christi @ Writing the Waves said...

Thanks for the tutorial. I made a clipboard last weekend for a family reunion gift, and it turned out pretty well, but I like some of your techniques better! I used patterned cardstock, and at first I regretted it because it seemed kind of bulky to work with, but as it dried, I was pleased because it didn't bubble much at all! Also, I love the peppermint stick idea...I'll hang on to that one for next year!

kristal said...

THANK YOU for the spray adhesive tip. i have yet to try it, but i've made dozens of clipboards using only modpodge and the bubbling was driving me mad. i researched TONS and tried all kinds of "tricks" to smooth them out but nothing worked. i had given up all hope, returned all my undecorated clipboards to the store and abandoned my project altogether. i now have a sliver of hope that this could work! and oh, how i want it to work! they are the CUTIEST! ok-so spray adhesive on the board, on the back of the paper and adhere. then follow up with two layers of modpodge with drying time in between. right?

Cassie said...

Thanks for the tutorial! I have added it to my future projects file.

megan said...

Love LOVE love!! Ok, do you have any idea if there is a way to WATERPROOF the clipboards???? My son's teacher for swim lessons uses a clipboard, and has her waterproof cass roster (laminated) clipped to it. Hmmm...As Pooh would say "Think Think Think". By the way, I have something special for Ella and it is ready to go, I just happen to be snowed in. I must figure out how that post office pick up from home works. Another by the way, do you want to work with me to coordinate a swap of some sort for the new year? I have seen people blog about these but never know how it works. Ok, I think I have bamboozled you with a long enough comment now. =)

Mandi @ Sweetly Home said...

High Five! Those rock. I've been dying to make myself a clipboard...or two...or twelve. I have so many places I want to put them. Thanks for giving me a bit of hitch in my giddy-up to get them done!

Trina said...

So cute, I love it.

And btw, the mini feather wreath ornaments on my tree came from a place called Garden Ridge. I am not sure where all they have stores. Ours is fairly new.

Angie said...

LOVE the clipboard! I'll have to try that sometime...Also, for the poster asking about making it waterproof, there is an outdoor modge podge out there...I think they are all waterproof though.

Jamie said...

Love it! Thanks for the tutorial. I really want to try it out!

Unknown said...

Wow, I am going to remember this for next year! They turned out great!

Callie Ann said...

So clever.

...maybe if I make these for me professors I could get some A's of some sort, eh?

AndreaLeigh said...

love it! they are so cute, and thanks so much for the tutorial!

Lemondrops Simple Stuff said...

Love the clipboards!!! I need some time to make some! Thanks for sharing!

Christine @UnstructuredBliss said...

Caught your link from your Guest Post at Blue Cricket today. I had always wanted to learn how to make these clip boards! Thank you for sharing. For the matching MiniBooks - did you just paper them? Did you use any type of binding tape over the edging?

Thanks for sharing - I'll be back often!

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