featured artist :: notepad cover tutorial

Hello, hello to everyone from the Ideas for Scrapbookers blog, where I'm the featured artist today! I'm so glad that you stopped in for a visit.

Today, I'm going to share with you a DIY tutorial that will show you cleverly inexpensive ways to use your paper and cardboard/chipboard scraps. 

I used the Sweet Blooms line from Colorbok for this gift set.
My second-grader has a male teacher this year and she is thrilled to be in his class...he likes science and so does she. Yeah, makes teacher gifts a little more challenging for me. And, no, that flowered gift set isn't for him, it's for the female teaching assistant!

I began by finding some sturdy cardboard to use for the notepad cover. I then cut it to size, slathered it in glue and burnished the paper to the cardboard.

I find it easier to burnish a larger piece of patterned paper or cardstock to the cardboard/chipboard and then trimming the paper to fit the cardboard. There's no worrying about lining up edges. I tried it both ways on this project and it worked best for me to trim the patterned paper to fit the cardboard after I glued and burnished.

I used my 1/16" hole punch on this chipboard letter and threaded through a small wire from a key tag. I began tying the knot, added the wire and then completed the knot. The Fiskars threading water border punch is a favorite of mine, I use it quite a lot.

And here's a peek at the inside {I blurred the name on the notepad for privacy}. I chose to wrap the ribbon around the outside of the paper. Another option would be to wrap the ribbon before adhering the patterned paper to the back of your cardboard cover. If you are choosing this option, I would definitely use a heavyweight cardstock and not a patterned paper.

Here I used paper from Scrap Within Reach, which I won on the blog ISLY for this project.
For the teacher, he gets the same gift, except in more manly tones. I reversed the positioning of the border punched paper strip and used a different monogram, but it's just as nice. The notecard was made from scraps. After adhering the patterned paper to the front of the card, I punched two holes to thread my paper "ribbon" through and then added a punched circle with a pop dot.

Can you see that somewhat rough spot at the edge of the P, where there might have been a leg to make it an R? I cut off the leg that made this P an R and {ta da} I have the letter I needed! Never underestimate the power of a crafty mama!


And now for the bonus portion of our show...hand sanitizer! What teacher these days makes it through the day without spritzing this a million times? Just cut your patterned paper to cover the advertising, adhere in the back and wrap either baker's twine or ribbon around the bottle and you now have a matching gift set.

These ideas are not new, we all know, but I wanted to share with you what a little creative packaging can do for a free notepad and some hand sanitizer. 

I'd love to see what you've made for teacher's gifts this year, I'm always on the prowl for new ideas. Leave me a link in the comments so that I can stop by and take a look at what's been keeping you busy. 


  1. Hey there - what is that tool you use to put the paper on the cardboard?? i always have issues getting paper to adhere well :

  2. Love the ideas! I need to make some now for holiday gift giving. Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. you are so clever! :)

    happy friday!


  4. cute packaging ideas! I love the pink patterned paper and nice choice for the man paper too. Thanks!! I have used my brayer to help get paper to stick to mini books and might try using my bone folder next time too.

  5. Love this!! Saw it over on IFS today and had to come tell you how fabulous it is!! :)

  6. lovely projects Monika!
    Thanks for sharing ;-)

  7. Monika - just wanted to say how I've enjoyed your blog since finding it at the beginning of the summer. I had a question about your previous post. I clicked on the link about your son's grad album. Did you mount the title page phote on the outside of the page (putting papers into the sleeve it looks like). I have a really hard time cutting a portrait oriented photo for albums like these but I love the simplicity of albums like these! Quite the problem that maybe I need to just get over! Anyway, love your ideas and sorry for the lengthy post.

  8. Andrea: the link to the tool that I use from my husband's college art tool box is:


    a little pricey, but from experience I think you will find this very useful...I also use it to score fold lines with my trimmer as the guide

    Dawn: I did mount the photo, and several other large ones to the outside of the photo sleeves just as you thought. I didn't feel comfortable cutting some of the photos in half to put in the sleeves...although I like that look, it didn't fit what I wanted for this album

    toots2u: the brayer is an excellent idea, I don't have one yet...

    Thank you all for asking!

  9. I love what you did with the Scrap Within Reach paper! Great projects!

  10. I found you through Hope Studious-this is so cute! What a great idea!

  11. Ooh these are just gorgeous! I am definitely going to have to try and make one, congrats on being featured too!

  12. I struggled with teachers goodies this year too because we had a male teacher for the first time. Thanks for the great ideas!


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