Oct 3, 2010

Cookie Sheet Calendars - part 1

I'm getting a lot of questions about my cookie sheet calendars and while I don't have the tutorial fully ready to go, I thought I could answer some questions and maybe get you started.  Sound good?

So, question one:  Supplies, what is needed? This is totally going to depend on how much you want to put into your calendar, but the basics are:  A cookie sheet, magnets, decorative paper, numbers, ink, embellishments, ribbons and binder clips.  Below I've listed some info about each.

Cookie sheet.  
- Make sure it has a rolled rim so that you can attach the clips to hang the finished product.  
- If you are making a horizontal cookie sheet, stick with a smaller/normal size - I want to say 10x15 is a standard size but don't quote me though.  You can go bigger, but the after making several of these, the smaller size looks better at least in my opinion.
-  If you are making a vertical hanging calendar, you can go with a bigger cookie sheet.
-  Make sure your cookie sheet is metal and will work with magnets
-  I usually buy cookie sheets that already black.  I have spray painted them before which can be done, but I won't lie, it was a pain and I had difficulties with the paint.

Magnets.-  You can buy them by the sheet or by the roll.  I found the roll to be the best value.  Plus, it's less cutting as you will need to cut a bunch of them into small 1/2 inch squares for the individual pieces and some 1 inch strips for the back pockets.

-  I prefer to work with a heavier weight paper.  You can use any paper but if it's thin, you may want to attach it to chip board to give it more support.  The benefit to the heavier weight paper is that usually it comes double sided so you'll have some already coordinated prints for your individual pieces.
- I usually pick about 5 sheets of coordinated 12x12 thick patterned paper and a few sheets of plain cardstock that coordinates. 

Here's the fun part where you can get really creative.  If you already have scrapbooking/stamping supplies, chances are you have what you need.  If you don't there are some ways around the expense.  Here are some of my suggestions.
Stamp sets:  You can buy numbered stamp sets.  I've found some in the dollar section of Target for, yup a $1.  I've also ordered some from stamp consultants for $15.  The price range here will vary and you can spend a lot, a little, or none at all.  See if your friends have stamps you can borrow or don't use stamps.
Rub-ons:  If you have a lot of alphabet rub-ons, you've probably got some numbers too.  Most alphabet sets have numbers at the end.  Look, because you probably don't even know you have them.  You can also buy rub-ons in various places, craft stores, the dollar tree, walmart, etc... - the prices will vary.
Stickers:  Just like the rubons, if you have alphabet stickers you probably have numbers.  Pull them out and look.  Plus you can buy them in various places too.
Your home computer:  If you want to make a calendar but don't have any of the supplies listed just use your computer and printer.  You can print different fonts and sizes to give the calendar an eclectic look or you can print them all the same and then just decorate/embellish each square. The trick here is print them on the paper before you cut the paper into small squares.
think out side the box:  You can make numbers out of various things.  Got a dime?  Then you've got your #10.  Got a quarter?  Yep, you've got #25.  Use 5 small brads to make #5.  Or spell out a number with stickers, rubons or stamps, like T.W.O.

If you don't have a lot of the listed items and you don't want to invest in them, go simple.  Just buy one stamp set and do all your numbers the same.  I prefer the eclectic look of mixing it up but I have made one using just one style of stamps and it looked really good.  The trick to giving it some spunk will be in your embellishments.

Collect a bunch of things that will coordinate with your color theme/paper choices.  Things like floss, ribbon, buttons, twine, beads, stickers, etc...  there are so many options, just think creatively.

In the photo above you can see that I used flower stickers over-lapping two pieces (#3 & #4) as an embellishment.  I also cut up the stickers that look like stitches to make the #11.  Seriously, once you start creating, ideas will pop into your heads.

Ok, that should give you something to think about while I finish up the tutorial.  Email or leave your questions in the comments and I will try to address them.