For Christmas I always trying to give my bff Jes something Jamie-Made and something store bought. Last year she received an awesome pixel quilt. Check it out below:
This year I couldn’t think of anything for the Jamie-Made piece. Eventually I settled on River Song’s diary. I know you can purchase it from Think Geek but I always think things are much more special if you make the present. Plus, I didn’t think the idea of making it seemed like something especially difficult.
I would say that this project took a month and a half to complete. I know that sounds like a long time for a book but I worked on other stuff and you do have to wait for paint, glue and mod podge to dry.
I bought a cheap diary style book from Wal-mart but I’m sure you can pick one up anywhere. Mine cost about $5. I stripped the book of its shiny and ugly wallpaper style coating. Doing so was rather quick and decently fun. The thought of destroying something to then make it beautiful was at the forefront of my mind.
The small piece of the book’s spine came off. That was an unexpected twist but easy to deal with.
I took a small piece of packing paper, some rubber cement and glued that bad boy back on.
After that it was trying to figure out how to make the detail on the front of the book. It’s very similar to the look of the Tardis. I used a couple cereal boxes, cut them to the size of the front of the book and glued the printed sides together. I had already sketched the design of the diary onto a piece of paper before I marked all over the cardboard. This was the longest process of the whole project. Cutting every little piece out with an X-acto knife and constantly worry about not stabbing myself took a small lifetime. I think it was worth it.
I did the spine a bit different. I use a single piece of cereal box cardboard. I didn’t want the ridges to be really deep. The great thing about thinner cardboard was that I could cut it with scissors.
Next I used mod podge. This was the first time I ever used it. I’m not a fan. I used a blue shade because I figured it would be a good base coat of color. This stuff didn’t go on as smooth as I was hoping. I took a piece of tissue paper and mod-podged it all over the book. My reasoning was that the edges of the book and the cardboard would become one. If I hadn’t, the cardboard would easily pop off of the book if it got caught on something and what a crap gift that would be!
Since that didn’t go on very smoothly I was stuck sanding down the book. Yes sanding. Hubby happens to have some uber fine sanding paper for model cars. It worked perfectly!
Two coats of Tardis blue later…
It’s starting to look very much like the book you can buy. To give it a bit of a dirty used look, I sanded it one more time in a few spots and painted it with brown watercolor then wiped it off.
The inside I made a bit more special. I bought a large piece of poster paper from Hobby Lobby in a cream tone. I printed Gallifreyan on the paper, painted yellow and orange water colors, and glued it into the book. I bet the one you can buy doesn’t have that!
The last step was for Hubby to give the whole book a clear coat. I wanted the book to have a smoother feel and the clear coat was the way to go.
I like to think of myself as a decent gift giver. I would love to keep this book, of course, I felt the same way last year about the quilt. I hope she loves it as much as I do!