Wednesday, May 20, 2015

My foster care binder makeover

My binder for the licensing process so far is boring.  It's gray.  It was one I happened to have so I just started using it, but it seems so drab, especially when we're talking about dealing with kids.  It needs some life!  Soooo...I decide to be brave and try decoupage for the first time.   Here we go!


First, I needed to find WHAT I wanted to decorate it with.  I had a very worn (and scribbled on) kids' book that had cute pictures, so I decided to use that, but then I needed a background color.  Luckily, my mother-in-law got me addicted to scrapbooking, so I have every scrapbook paper/color known to man.  I found 2 of the same yellow sheet that matched nicely with my cute pictures, but I also needed an accent color for the spine because the yellow sheets weren't big enough, so I grabbed a red.

I also had Mod Podge from a while ago that I bought but never actually was brave enough to try, so I had that already on hand.  Also needed sponges to spread the Mod Podge, scissors to cut out my cute pictures, paper trimmer to measure and cut the correct size and wax paper to try to keep from making a huge mess on the
My supplies.   

I emptied my binder (which might be a pain to put all the stuff back in then but I didn't want to risk getting the papers messy.)  I did the spine first.  According to what I've read on how to do this, I spread the Mod Podge on the binder AND on the back of the paper.  Placed the paper where I wanted it, creased the corners and then spread more all over it again, especially the edges.  I used a baking scraper (seen in a picture farther down) to help get rid of air bubbles and make it smooth. I was a big old mess after this initial attempt.  It looks all nice and neat in the photo, but it took me a while to get it just right, get it creased without shifting (and the paper was somewhat stiff as well, so that didn't help.  Though in another how-to blog I read, they suggested dampening the paper if it's thick or stiff to help it be more pliable, but I didn't do that.)  So, got the red on finally and somewhat happy with the results, then I was stuck with how on earth I sit this to dry?  lol  If I laid it open the creases got funky and I wanted them to dry in a nice position, so I balanced it carefully (after it falling on the floor once and the glue picking up dust and dog hair, yay) on the back of the chair to dry (or mostly dry.)

I used this drying time to start cutting out my cute little pictures.  Once the red was mostly dry, I attached the front side of the yellow.  Again, made a huge mess, but got it on there.  Put Mod Podge all over the binder, then all over the back of the yellow sheet, then after placing it, attached more all over the whole front and especially around the edges and corners to make sure they stayed sealed down.  I've seen people fold the paper over to the inside, but the inside had a pocket and I didn't want to mess with that, so I just cut it right to the edge and hoped it'd stay down.  Then I let that dry again.

The front getting ready for the cute pictures.  Notice my baking scraper thing, it worked fantastic to help get rid of air bubbles and scraping off excess.

Once that was mostly dry it was time for the fun part!  Adding all my cute little pictures.  I did lay them out on the other yellow sheet, kind of as a guide so I knew where I wanted them.  There was a lot of picking up and laying back down, but I got them on.  Again, I Mod Podged the base (the yellow sheet) AND the back of the picture AND over top of all of it once it was all down.  Once that all dried, I did another coat AGAIN, just to seal it well and make sure (and the edges again just to make sure.)

 After that was really dry, I turned it over and just placed a yellow piece on the back, no special pictures or anything.

The final result.  I had a hard time getting a good angle shot showing the spine as well, but you get the picture.

I let it all dry well overnight and this morning I put all my papers back in.  It looks to be holding up really well, no issues with anything peeling up at all.  I'm pretty pleased with it, especially as my first attempt at Mod Podge.  Next I'm going to decorate up an empty oatmeal container and use it for my headbands.  ;)  lol

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