Episode 63: Brown Paper Baggin’ It

This is one of the weirdest episodes The Gals have ever done. They were a bit all over the place for this but managed to fit in some great ideas and talk about using brown paper bags in your mixed media arts and crafts. Because this episode got so silly and crazy Katie wanted to make sure she was able to get the tutorial she talked about up on the blog for this one but was unable to do so until late last night (which is why we held the episode back yesterday).

There are some rally cool examples of way to use paper bags on the Pintrest board for this episode and you can check that out here.

And now for the quick tutorial Katie did for you on how to use paper bags to make a neat little hand bound journal.

Cut open your paper bags and remove the bottoms (save the bottom pieces for protecting work surfaces… they work great for that). With scissors or a paper cutter, cut down all of your pieces of paper bag to a uniform size (these are all 6” X 12”). Once you have all of the pieces cut you will make your signatures. This book ended up having six signatures of three pages each (yours can be bigger, this is just a small example). To make signatures stack your pages together and fold them in half as one stack. Make sure to use a bone folder or ruler to get a good, sharp fold.

Use the pieces of paper bag with writing on them to cover two pieces of cereal box (or other similar weight cardboard… the ones used here came for a case of soda water). Cut the cardboard at the same size square as your pages (you can go slightly larger if you wish but this is not necessary) and give yourself a 1” to 1 1/2 “ edge to work with all the way around.






Using a glue stick for adhesive, cover the front side of your cardboard with paper bag ensuring that you cut the corners nicely. Once edges are turned in a glued down with coroners mitered, use a piece of decorative paper cut one inch smaller around to cover the empty space. Use a brayer to roll over glued areas to ensure full contact and smooth surfaces at each stage of gluing the cover.










Make evenly spaced pencil marks on the edge of the front and back covers; these will serve as a guide for the holes. Use a hole punch to get clean edged holes where you made your marks. (Tip: do one side first then lay it over the other cover and use that as a template to transfer marks. This will ensure that your holes line up perfectly). Place eyelets in holes and crimp them onto place with eyelet setter to give holes a sturdy finished look (found at fabric stores).










Stack your signatures making sure they are straight and sue one of the covers to mark the holes on your first signature. With a ruler, line up to the guide you just made for the hole and draw a line down the spines of your signature for all holes. The dots this makes on the spines of each page will indicate where you punch holes into your signatures for stitching. Using an awl, poke holes on each dot for all signatures and stack back in the exact order you marked them in.







Use the instruction given in our Book Binding episode to help you stitch the book together using the Coptic stitch.

And there you have it, a cool little sketch book or ideas journal to keep in your purse or leave hanging around your desk. These make excellent gifts and are super for kids to draw in!










If you have any questions or comments about this or any other episode email The Gals at twoartsygals@gmail.com. You can also reach them on any of our social media accounts which you can link t in the sidebar on the right. Don’t forget our Facebook giveaway! Like us on the FB to be entered in the drawing for a cool piece of art! Next week The Gals will be back to tell you all about the pearlescent water colors they played with recently so make sure you come back for that and until then… make some cool shit, yo!


About 2artsygals

Podcast Producer. Artist. Writer. Cat lover. Unicorn worshiper. Narwhal enthusiast. Next level proficiency in swearing. Aging GenXer/Riot Grrrl with a True Crime fascination. I also like cheese.
This entry was posted in Two Artsy Gals Podcast Show Notes and Links and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s