Thursday, May 10, 2012

Guest Post: Paint Chip Notebooks

Hi there, Hardly Housewives fans.  My name is Jody and I blog at the hobby room.  I'm from the Pacific Northwest and spend my days playing LEGOs and doing light saber battles with my boys, making treats, and spreading craft supplies over all available surfaces.  I'm here today to show you a fun craft made with everyone's favorite, paint chips.

I met Caitlin when she won my very first blog giveaway for a box of Penzey's Spices.  In the package I mailed Caitlin, along with a sample box of Penzey's Spices, I threw in some of my business cards, which happen to also be paint chip matchbook notepads.  Caitlin really liked the notepads and asked if I would show you all how to make them, too.

This project started out as something I pinned and just couldn't get out of my head.  I really, really like paint chips and was looking for a clever business card idea, so figured that combining the two could only result in greatness.  Right?  Absolutely.

Before I get started, take a look at the project I originally pinned here.  Sky at the Capital B blog does an awesome job and I just love the pictures she took.  I do mine a little differently, but the idea is the same: get some paint chips, cut little pieces of paper, sew it all together.

Supplies you definitely need:

plain white paper
paper cutter
paint chips, the long rectangle size

Supplies you probably need:

sewing machine with white thread
scoring board with bone folder

Let's get started . . .

1.  Fold your paint chips.  I used a scoring board to get a nice, crisp line, but you could just fold the paint chip up and over a ruler.  You need to fold up about half an inch for the bottom portion and this looks good with either the darker color or the lighter color, so I do a mixture of both.  Next fold the top part down so it overlaps the bottom by 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch.  Note where the folds go and score all your paint chips at once.  Score the wrong (non-colored) side of the paint chip.

2.  Cut your filler paper.  Measure the finished size of the matchbook and cut paper squares 1/4 inch smaller in width and height (or 1/8 inch on each side).  Using a paper cutter, cut three sheets at a time into strips, then cut each strip into pages.  Putting eight to ten pages in each matchbook is a good number as far as usefulness and as far as what a sewing machine can handle.

3.  Prep matchbooks.  Pre-fill each paint chip with pages and set aside to facilitate faster sewing.

4.  Sew matchbooks.  Sew a short seam across the bottom of the matchbook, 1/4 inch from the bottom. Make sure to back stitch at each end.  Trim threads close and tuck in the cover.  No sewing machine?  You could just pop a staple through all the layers where you'd sew and call it good.

As a result of the needle punching through the paper, the backside of the matchbook doesn't look as clean as the front and I haven't been able to figure out a way around this.  If you know, please tell me about it.   In the meantime, it didn't really matter because I was putting a printed business card sticker on the back anyway.  You could add any sort of sticker, a color-related phrase would be a really cute thing to do.  How about "You Are My Sunshine" on the back of a bright yellow matchbook?

I really hope you'll try this project.  It's easy to make a lot fairly quickly so you'll always have some on hand and extras to give out to anyone who needs something to write on.  And then won't you be the nicest, most creative person everywhere you go?  Well, okay, I bet you already are.

Caitlin, thanks so much for letting me stop by and share with your readers.  Stop by the hobby room sometime and say "hi," I'd love to have you over!  


  1. Love these!! So colorful and practical :)

  2. Wow! These look AWESOME. This would be such a cool housewarming gift.

  3. Thanks so much for sharing, Jody! I need to give these a shot!

  4. Thank you so much for the guest post spot, ladies. Glad you like the project! Do you have a button that I can add to my blog?


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