Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Creating the Boxed Booklet Wedding Party Invites

Once all the *duh-rama* of choosing the Party People had subsided, I was finally ready to tackle that whole "asking them" thing.  Being the creative and crafty woman that I am, I was jumping out of my skin to get elbow-deep in some paper and adhesive.  Based on a lot of inspiration I'd culled from the far-and-wides of the interwebs, here's what I put together:

(clockwise from top left) box top, box bottom with paper rosette, booklet invite (with name blurred)

And now here's the step-by-step process, in case you wanted to know.  ;-)

First I purchased the boxes that my booklet invitations would go in.  I found these shiny black jewelry boxes on eBay for $2 each, after shipping.  Usually I would scoff at spending $2 for a little box, but because I already owned the other necessary materials, it seemed like a reasonable expense. 

Using ribbon I had on hand (but that I admittedly bought months ago for potential wedding projects), I began to layer them until I found a design I liked.  I trimmed the ribbon long enough to wrap around the edges of the box top and melted the edges to prevent fraying.  (Sorry, forgot to take pictures of this part.)

Run permanent adhesive onto both the top and bottom edges of the ribbon.  Then you just stick the ribbon onto the box top, wrapping it around the edges and tucking the raw ends into the inside of the box top.  Keep layering the ribbons until you're satisfied with the overall effect.  Now you have an easily removable and totally chic booklet box!

Moving on to the insides - I planned to make the booklet 1/4 inch smaller than the box measurements so that it would be a perfect fit.  So if your box is 4 x 6 inches, your final booklet size will be 3.75 x 5.75 inches.  To cut the correct size of cardstock for the orientation of this booklet, you keep the height measurement the same and double the length measurement (because you'll be folding the cardstock in half).  That means my cardstock booklet covers were 3.75 x 11.5 inches.  I cut these using my paper trimmer.

In order to have a "spine" for the booklet where you will bind it together and that will allow the front cover to easily open, I scored the front cover.  I didn't allow quite enough room for my spine, so I would suggest scoring at 1/2 inch in from the cover fold. 

To make the names on the front I used my Bosskut Gazelle (omg-how-i-love-this-machine!), which is sort of like a Cricut except that it doesn't use cartridges.  Instead you design the cut files yourself, and the thing I might love the most is that you can use *any* of the True Type fonts on your computer.  I cut out the name and then backed it with blue for contrast.  I chose that oh-so-trendy technique where you round opposite corners, and I liked the modern funky vibe that gave my design.  Mounting that on the patterned paper brought in some of the wedding style and gave it a finished look.  

The bottom left corner is rounded, too.  (kills me to blur out all those lovely letters!)

For the inner pages, my theme was "reasons you should consider being in my wedding party."  I made a list of all the reasons I wanted to include, then I went searching for images to fit the sentiment.  I didn't give photo credit in my booklets, and I don't recall where the images came from.  But I can tell you that I found all of them through Google images. 

Once I found my images, I laid them out in Microsoft Publisher within rectangles that were the size of the booklet.  I printed them on my home printer and trimmed them with the paper cutter.  I included a blank sheet at the back so I could write a personal note to each Party Person.  I ended up making a second document containing the white circles with words, which I cut out and adhered onto the printed booklet pages.  In hindsight, I wish I'd just printed the words directly onto the images.  Having the circle cut-outs didn't add that much (in my opinion), and it would've saved me a step in the process.  Oh well, live and learn. (and then get Luvs!  Anyone recall that commercial?  Anyone?) 

Here are all the pages I included (after it was bound - I'm getting to that step next):

At this point you have the completed cover and all the inner pages.  I quickly scored the inner pages at the same measurement as the front cover.  Now you stack it all up and you're ready for "binding."  For this I used my Crop-a-Dile Big Bite to set two 1/8 inch eyelets into the spine.  To use the Crop-a-Dile you first set it to punch the appropriate size holes.

(Confession: I didn't take pictures of this part cuz I wasn't blogging at that point.  So I'm illustrating here with other images, but I promise to provide better pictures in the future!)

Then you insert the eyelet and squeeze.  (The full instructions are a bit more complicated than this because there are so many different things this tool can do, so I encourage you to read the manual.) 

For the finishing touch I included a small folded paper rosette/pinwheel/starburst (yes, it's called all of these names depending on where you find it online) to sit under the booklet and again give a little hint about the wedding style.

And that's about it.  Hope you enjoyed the first of many tutorials! 

Any other happy Bosskut Gazelle owners out there?

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