accumulator seriali - part 32

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com A good while ago I realised this series of my personal collections and accumulations could go on nearly forever. And it still could, but it won't. I need to make more room in my schedule for writing my poetry book, so, there will be changes to the blogging schedule after Christmas. I will still be blogging weekly about bookbinding and bi-weekly about my mixed media endeavours. While the Accumulator Seriali series won't be making regular appearances next year, if I get the urge, I might still post a collection every now and then.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

Today's post is about my childhood collection of Victorian scraps - the only one of my collections I spent years purposefully collecting. The collection is huuuuuge (so there's enough for one more Accumulator Seriali post...), but I honestly have very little idea how huge (well, it's not a museum collection huge by any measure). The last time I remember counting the scraps I finished around 700 (in mid to late 90s), but as I went through the lot it felt like the number now could easily be four times that. But I won't be counting these any time soon.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

I originally stored all the Victorian scraps in these photo albums with sticky pages (and usually very ugly covers), of which I had about a dozen or so. One day I had the bright idea of finally rearranging the scraps by theme and style, and took them out of their albums, sorted them into big envelopes, and got bored. So, some twenty years later, I have two albums with a few pages of scraps (the other albums have lost their stickiness a long time ago) and many barely together envelopes full of scraps with labels like animals, people, angels, fairytales.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

Opening up the envelopes unleashed something I had entirely forgotten about - the cursed thing called glitter! Somehow it managed to spread all over our home even though I only had the scraps out for like fifteen minutes.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

This is obviously the fairytale lot! A lovely jumble of moomins, fairies, elves, clowns. etc.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

Most of the scraps just look old, but these roses actually are. I can no longer remember where I got them, but it might be from my grandmother.

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

My childhood collection of Victorian scrap - www.paperiaarre.com

Some scraps are still full sheets - like these ballerinas and fairies. Very girly stuff. I don't remember being a super girly girl, but I wasn't a tomboy either. I sucked at sports (still do!) and I liked pretty things (still do!). More than anything I liked making, collecting, and organising stuff. While many things have changed, those haven't.

Tallenna

soft cover notebooks

soft cover notebooks by Kaija Rantakari / www.paperiaarre.com This week has been a hugely busy one, but I did finish these two soft cover notebooks late last night. The large black one is now available in the shop. Please note that today is the last day to place any US and Canada orders and have them arrive in time for Christmas (my European customers: you have until the 14th!) - so do head over to the Paperiaarre Etsy shop and buy handmade paper treasures for your loved ones!

soft cover notebooks by Kaija Rantakari / www.paperiaarre.com

I wanted the beautiful printed endpapers to get all the attention in these books, so I paired them with plain light green and black book cloth. Thanks to the special construction, the covers are nice and flexible without being flimsy. The books have 96 pages of 150gsm drawing paper, but despite the heavyweight paper the finished books are quite lightweight and perfect travel companions both for small trips to work and back, or for bigger trips to the other side of the globe.

soft cover notebooks by Kaija Rantakari / www.paperiaarre.com

soft cover notebooks by Kaija Rantakari / www.paperiaarre.com

Now it's time for me to dash off to wrap and mail some orders before the sauna is warm. After all the hard work (and finishing nearly every project) I'm rewarding myself with a nice afternoon sauna and some  dark chocolate (86% cacao is the way to go these days).

mixed media monday - watch case pendants

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com Time for fair and lovely things! Also, I just realised this is my 700th blog post! It's surprisingly easy to forget I've been doing all this for over 9 years! I'm so patting myself on the back for this accomplishment.

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com

This trio of vintage watch case pendants is the result of me trying to be less precious with my beautiful raw materials. Mission accomplished, this time! I've been hanging on to these watch cases for long enough now, and the funny thing about it is that I've known all along what I want to make with them. It just took a little (or lots of) creative advice dished out by the fab Jealous Curator on her ART FOR YOUR EAR podcast (I've been binge listening, so I have no idea which episode pushed me into movement - I recommend each and every episode!) before I could take on the task of putting these pendants together.

A lucky lady already bought the middle one off my Instagram, but the other two will be available later today in the Paperiaarre shop. Still in time to arrive by Christmas, hint, hint...

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com

"together is found here in great quantities"

Couldn't be more true! - I'm fully taken over by some year-end sugary-syrupy gratefulness for all the togetherness you've shown me this past year. While all that sugar doesn't generally fit my personality, I'm just going to embrace it. This year has been the best of all the nine Paperiaarre years. Thank you, my loves!

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com

Usually this time of the year I've been hard at work on the non-Christmassy advent calendar - always enjoying it, but usually also struggling with the sheer volume of work to be done in a very limited time (yeah, yeah, I could just manage my time better and start earlier, but that's just not something I'm able to do). Creating these watch case pendants satisfied my desire to work small, and it was also very rewarding to have a December project be done within mere days of starting it. Selfish, selfish! I refuse to feel guilty about it, though. I find my best work gets done when I enjoy making it the most, so basically you directly benefit from my selfishness, too.

mixed media watch case pendants by Kaija Rantakari, 2016 - www.paperiaarre.com

I wish you all lots of laughter and nonsense this December Monday! Have great week, make stuff, love more!

contrast spines + last holiday order dates

long stitch photo album with grey and yellow linen covers, handmade by Kaija Rantakari - www.paperiaarre.com This week I've taken a nice break from book cloth among other things, and put together books with linen covers and contrast spines. This grey and yellow photo album is just delicious!

long stitch photo album with grey and yellow linen covers, handmade by Kaija Rantakari - www.paperiaarre.com

Another fresh addition to the shop: four small notebooks with flexible linen covers lovely endpapers made out of either printed lokta paper or heavier solid-coloured bugra paper.

 

small handmade notebooks with linen covers, handmade by Kaija Rantakari - www.paperiaarre.com

small handmade notebooks with linen covers, handmade by Kaija Rantakari - www.paperiaarre.com

small handmade notebooks with linen covers, handmade by Kaija Rantakari - www.paperiaarre.com

You can find all of these books in the Paperiaarre shop here. And since the holidays are quickly approaching, and some of you live very far indeed, I'd like to remind you of the last holiday order dates. The sooner the better (and safer) obviously, but please place your holiday orders at latest by the date listed below:

Europe - Dec 14th the US and Canada - Dec 8th Rest of the world - Dec 4th

Thanks so much!

DIY super simple advent calendar tutorial

DIY: super simple advent calendar - www.paperiaarre.com For all you last-minute people out there: here's a tutorial for a super simple advent calendar. You can easily make adjustments and make it as fancy or as simple as you want! All you need is paper (A4 size), some blank cards (A6=10,5x14,8cm), tape, printer/pen/other mark making method, mini wooden pegs, and some twine for hanging. And if you're short on supplies you can skip the pegs and hanging altogether, and place the envelopes in a box or a bowl instead.

I made a grown-up version of an advent calendar by choosing a poem for each day, but you could hide any type of messages or drawings inside yours. The folded envelopes can also hold flattish treats. I used a typewriter with white transfer paper (the type used in transferring sewing patterns) sandwiched between black paper and a lightweight sheet of waste paper to create white text on black paper. This level of sophistication is entirely optional - you can use either lighter colour paper and print/write/draw on it, or use white gel liner pen on black paper, if you, too, are a fan of the white on black look.

DIY: super simple advent calendar - www.paperiaarre.com

I then printed the numbers 1-24 on some blank kraft cards. You can download a printable pdf for the number cards here, including that number 25 that's unnecessary to us Finns, but feel free to skip the printable and just do the numbering by hand in your chosen technique (i.e. calligraphy, collage, papercutting, or simply write the numbers with a pen like any normal person not looking for extra difficulties would). Some printers can't even handle cardstock, so don't despair - just work around it. The number cards are reusable, so once you get them done, next year's advent calendar is almost done (maybe not quite, but it's a start anyway)!

DIY: super simple advent calendar - www.paperiaarre.com

The technique I used for folding the poems is the same I shared with you earlier in my folded envelope tutorial, with the flaps wrapping up the other way on this one. I made a quick instagram video to show you how it's done, but for more detailed description view both the video and the written and illustrated tutorial and adjust the flaps accordingly. Use a sheet of A4 waste paper to create a mock-up and check how the numbers on your cards line up (or better yet, if you're doing the numbers by hand, do them only after you've folded the papers, so you know exactly where to place them).

Once you're done with folding your calendar messages, it's time to hang them up in a nice row (or a messy one). As we celebrate Christmas on the 24th already, I got away with typing just 24 poems I like for one reason or another (it took me a while...). Had I chosen only short, small ones, I could've gone with half the size for a super cute mini calendar, and less than half the typing time. If you'd prefer to make the smaller version, choose A5 paper (14,8x21cm) and A7 cards (7,4x10,5cm).

DIY: super simple advent calendar - www.paperiaarre.com

At this tender age of 32 neither I or my dear V are impatiently waiting for Christmas, so this advent calendar is more like a 24-day-long Christmas present than a countdown to a magical day. Material gifts have become less and less important to us, and many others, making this type of advent calendar a great alternative way to celebrate the holiday season. Have you come up with ways to spend a grown-up Christmas while still perhaps holding on to some traditions? Who would you make an advent calendar for? Your kids, your spouse, your parents? What would you hide in their calendar?