Want to see how I made it? Keep reading! Since this post has a lot of pictures, I kept them a little smaller than usual. Click on any of them to see a larger shot and more detail.
Make the calendar
To start, trim all of the calendar pieces from the 12x12 pre-printed sheet.
Square them up on the top, and hold together with binder clips. Apply bookbinding glue to the top edge. I applied several thin coats, spreading it with my fingers after each application. Let it dry completely.
Make the easel
Cut bookboard to the size you desire. I cut mine to 3.5 x 4.75".
Cut a cover piece that is 1.5" wider than your board, and 2" longer than your board. On the bottom of the board, draw a line 0.75" from the short and long edge to help you line up the first piece.
Apply glue to one piece of bookboard, spread the glue with a brush, and put it on the cover piece using the lines you drew to help you place it properly. It's not critical that it exactly line up with each line.
Apply glue to the second piece of bookboard. Place a long grid ruler along the edge of the first piece of board, and lay the second piece of board flush against the ruler, leaving 3/8" between the two pieces of board. This will allow the easel to fold nicely.
Clip the corners of the paper at angle and at a distance from the corner equal to the thickness of the board.
Score each flap, pre-fold them around each board, apply glue, and adhere. I also like to score along the gutter edge of each board to make folding it easier later.
Draw a line at the outer edge of each board about 3/4" from the short edge, and use a crop-a-dile to punch the larger holes in the bookboard. I use the stops on the crop-a-dile to set a constant distance from the long edge, and the line to make sure the holes are a constant distance from the short edge.
Set eyelets in each hole, making sure the nice edge is on the finished side, and the raw edge is on the side that still has the bookboard exposed.
Cover the backside with cardstock. Push the cardstock gently into the space between the boards with your fingers. It's ok if it rips - it won't be seen - but I sure am not happy that I made that mistake with my first easel!
After the back is covered (this shows my second easel), use the smaller punch in the crop-a-dile to punch a hole to reopen the eyelets. If you have resistance, you haven't centered the punch properly!
At this point, I like to press everything in my book press. If you don't have one, find a few heavy books. Especially around the eyelets, this will help to make sure everything is nicely adhered. First, I wrap the board in waxed paper, to make sure any oozing glue doesn't stick to anything else. To make sure I get even pressure around the lumpy eyelets, I put fun foam on either side of the board, and then place in the book press.
Embellish the cover
This part is where you get to let your creativity shine! I decided to use the wooden sticks from the Comfort Zone kit. First, I used distress inks to give them a warmer base color. Keep applying until you like the color intensity.
I have to say that I loved the foam applicator from Ranger for this job. I was worried the rougher surface of the wood might rip it, but it stood up to the task. I then stamped the year on the bottom part of the stick. The Hero Arts Printer's Type is one of my all time favorite letter/number sets. It is so versatile.
To assemble the easel, I ran ribbon through all of the eyelets, knotting on the back at a nice distance to keep it open. You could also tie a bow or knot the two ends together.
Finally, I embossed a stamp in copper, and misted some flowers from the Comfort Zone kit to tone down the color a bit. Here is my finished easel from the top of the post. My one little word this year is "action" so I thought this was a nice way to remind me of it.
I made my dear hubby one, too. Originally, I was going to make two with different colors, but he liked the colors I picked. The difference for his was I used one of the little index prints to embellish his home-made ribbon slide.
My ribbon slide, by the way, is an oval punch, and then I punched the ribbon slots with a Making Memories slot punch. I love that tool.
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Links to some of the products in this post (shop through an *Amazon link to support this blog!):