Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Three Boutique Gifts for $1 Each - REALLY!!

Sad to say, I got NO takers on last week's blog challenge.  Too bad, cuz I had some really pretty blog candy to give away.  Maybe I'll try again in a few weeks.

This week, I'm going to show you three gifts I made for my good friend, Sylvia. Normally, I don't brag about how much I spend on someone's gift, but you just won't believe what this pretty gift set trio cost. Here are the items:

This pretty frame...... just $1!!!!!

This gratitude journal.......just $1

And this candle......yep, just $1!!!!!!

The secret?  The Dollar Store! Yes, I bought a plain, kind of ugly, wooden frame, a top-spiral hard covered lined notebook, and a plain blue candle. I took them home, selected papers and embellishments from my stash in colors that would match Sylvia's bedroom, and simply covered each piece. I had the wonderful buttons from a tin of buttons and findings I picked up at a garage sale this summer.  All three pieces took just three 12 x 12 pieces of decorative cardstock!! 

Here's how it's done:
Frame:  Sand frame so that paper will stick easier. Paint inside and outside edges with blue acrylic paint, let dry. Trim decorative cardstock paper to size of frame (trace frame onto back of cardstock - make sure to trace inside opening, then cut out). Adhere paper to frame with good glue. I used Perfect Paper Adhesive. Or you can use bookbinding glue, as well. From coordinating cardstock, I cut out the paisley shapes, and adhered to covered frame. Distress inside and outside edges of paper with brown distress ink on a piece of Cut n' Dry.  Line inside of frame with coordinating plain cardstock. This is where the picture will go. Add buttons and flower embellishments with glue dots.

Gratitude Journal: Remove plastic spiral binding by twirling it out of the holes. Set aside. Sand notebook if it is glossy, as this one was. I chose to paint the outside edges of the covers, but you could also wrap the paper into the inside. Apply cardstock (striped on bottom, star design on top); apply small strip of cardstock between the two panels. Distress edges. Use small 1/8" paper punch to punch the holes through the cardstock. Do this from the back, aligning the punch with the holes in the notebook. Adhere panel 1/8" smaller all around the the inside cover of the front.  Repeat for back covers. I used the coordinating paisley cardstock for the back cover.  Stamp "gratitude" on brown panel, mount onto blue scrap, adhere to cover.  Add buttons and flowers with glue dots.  Rewind the spiral binding back onto the covers and pages.   Tie coordinating ribbons and fibers to binding.  

For more information about gratitude journals, including how to use them, see my article on HubPages here http://hubpages.com/_quhng16s2trb/hub/-Journaling-About-Gratitude-Changed-My-Life .

Candle:  Cut decorative cardstock (striped) size of candle and circumference plus 1". Wrap around candle and adhere by overlapping the piece and attaching with tape runner.  Cut second piece (paisley) a little more narrow that first piece and adhere as above.  Distress edges.  Add ribbon and tie bow. Add buttons and flowers with glue dots.

That's it!!! A pretty little gift set which looks like it came from an artsy boutique, for a fraction of the cost. Just an investment of your time. But you won't even mind spending the time....it's so much fun making something pretty from something plain!

Ciao!  Peace and blessings,



  1. Lynda, very beautiful and clever. You are a wonderful inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing your talent! Anne

  2. Very Pretty, I would love to receive this as a gift! Lucky friend

  3. Lynda! What a super gift set. I love the blue and brown together

  4. Hi, Lynda! What a terrific gift set! You are far more patient than I ... I don't know if I'd have ever gotten that spiral unwound and wound back on again! :-)


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