Floppy Sloppy Grocery Bag Journal

I've always been interested in trying book binding and I finally took the leap with this project! It turned out floppy and sloppy but I kind of love that about it.

I used a great tutorial for putting this together that can be found on Judy Wise's blog, here. I also watched about 1,800 coptic stitch videos on YouTube.

This required a whole stack of grocery bags which I've been hoarding under the kitchen sink for months. To get the folds out of the paper and to achieve the messy crinkled look, I soaked the bags in water, squeezed them into balls then flattened and hung them to dry outside. Once dry, I ironed them flat before folding them into signatures.

There are a lot of plain pages that can be used for art journaling but I'm partial to the pages that have little tattoos of where they originated from.

Coptic stitch was new to me. My execution was a bit (a lot) messy but it ended up fitting with the sloppy look so let's just say that I meant it to be that way, shall we?

I embellished the cover with stitching, buttons and a piece of linen that I stamped with my simple house stamps.

I want to make 100 more of these! Unfortunately, I'll need to wait until I can replenish my grocery bag hoard. Seattle charges $0.05 per bag so they are a hot commodity around these parts!

Kiss. Love. Laugh. Craft.

It was a crazy summer. Some good crazy, some bad crazy but either way, I am welcoming the dark rainy days of autumn in Seattle with open arms. Hello fireplace, sweat pants, hot toddies and guilt-free afternoons hiding in my craft room. Oh how I missed you.

I thought this adorable cross-stitch pattern by SatsumaStreet was the perfect way to kick-off a season full of crafting... and hopefully plenty of kissing, loving and laughing too!

When I've been in a crafty slump, I find that projects with somewhat prescriptive patterns can help break my creative block. That was the case with this design - it was just what I needed to get my mojo back.

I turned the completed piece into a project tote bag. Ordinarily I'd pair a bright design like this with a simple linen fabric but I I decided to turn up the volume and go with something bold instead! It will be a great splash of color on dreary winter days.

I sent this to a friend but if I had more patience for cross-stitch, I'd love to make one for myself too. As it was, I only had the crafty fortitude to finish these 4 words!

I'm raising my glass (of hot toddy) to toast to a season full of creative inspiration and productive hands! Cheers and happy crafting!!