Saturday, October 8, 2011

2 books, 25 tea bags, one glue gun blister, and 49,567.34 hours

For the last month I have been all consumed with this project. Not in the same way as I've been obsessed with lens shopping, but I had to work on it almost constantly. It started as a quick, easy, clever way to fill time. Only I realized all too soon that it definitely was more of a time investment than I thought it would be. The other day a friend asked me how many hours it took and I said 15. Having thought about it almost constantly since then (ok, not really), I think that is a gross understatement. I think it's actually closer to 30 hours.

The first time I saw this idea it was posted here, and since then I've seen numerous versions around pinterest. Oh, dear, beloved pinterest.

I stayed pretty basic with this one, but my overly particular self did make a few choices that no one but me would notice. First, I used dictionary pages instead of regular books for the varied bold, normal, italic, and phonetic text. If you get close enough it adds a tiny bit of variation that normal book pages lack (IMO). Second, I tea stained the books before I used them. Again, this just adds an ever so slight variation in color that with lighting and shadows gives the monotone wreath slightly more dimension. Third, I decided I was going to hang it on a mirror which meant I needed to fully cover the back as well as the front. I wanted the reflected image to feel seamless.

Here's how I tea stain books (the whole thing not just the edges):
Even then, I got more impatient and made the last rosette's for the back with paper that was still damp. The other day His Hotness turned the oven on and mentioned that he feels like every time we bake something he's got to check and make sure there's no book waiting to (not)spontaneously combust. I found humor in it, anyway :)

It now resides here:

At one point, I was frustrated thinking it would never ever ever be done. I'm not a shabby chic kind of gal and wondered if it would really fit our home. In the end, I love love love it!!!! It was totally worth the time, the one horrific (overdramatized) hot glue blister, and the countless hours.


  1. Michelle, that looks fantastic. I had not seen one of these in blogland yet. This is much nicer than what I've seen and I even liked those....I'm not doing one; however I have a ruined bible (from when Andrew was caught 'feasting' on the Word)...I wonder how the thinner paper would look?. Maybe I could make a Christmas tree ornament from it?

  2. You are way more patient than I am with things like this . . . Turned out nicely.


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