Snow Day = Altered Book Day!

Altered Book for 2016 Year of Creative DiscoveryI had a client cancel their jewelry class with me today because of weather. That’s one reason why I love winter in Wisconsin because a snow day = altered book day!

I thought I’d share my process with you since you probably can’t come over today and play with me.

  • I get my coffee & some chill music for today (sometimes I blare hard rock!). The music I pick usually has a beat so I can dance while I’m decided what to do with my page. One of my body’s needs is to move (but not too much – aaarrrggg) so dancing while I’m in my home office is something that I love. I love stretching too – everybody should stretch each day.
  • I get my supplies all out in front of me with every tool in reach (scissors, glue stick, and scrap paper to glue on).
  • Take a minute to get grounded. Breath deep and let it go releasing your stress of the past. Breath deep and let it go releasing any thoughts of upcoming stuff. Breath deep and let it go while you focus just on this moment you are in. Tell yourself “I love you” (I know sometimes it’s hard, but by the end of this year you’ll be able to shout it if you practice!!)

I have already painted & did backgrounds on about 1/3 of the pages. I didn’t do all the pages yet, just some to get me started.

Altered Book 13 (1 of 1)Altered BookBasic Directions for Altered BookimageAltered Book Spread





I’ve done some pages with scrapbook paper that isn’t too busy with a pattern so I can journal on those pages. I’ve left just the paint scraping on some and then did some collage on others. I’ve left spaces for doodling and/or journaling on all the pages.


stash of collage elementsBook Case with collage stuffBag of collage stuffHere’s my collection of collage elements that I have compiled over MANY years. I have a small set of plastic drawers, a large ziplock of magazine pictures, stickers, and then my book case of art books and the bottom is all magazines. I have mixed media, artist dolls, jewelry, yoga, fairie, and O magazines. I love collage and I can be a hoarder without taking up too much room (hee hee).

imageAltered Book SpreadAltered Book SpreadAltered Book Spread





  • When I start a collage page, I get a lot of my stash out and look through it. I pick out stuff that draws my attention. I don’t know why it’s jumped out at me yet, but I grab it and start a pile. I keep out my stash but set it to the side so I can focus on the images I’ve picked. I never know if I need a picture to go along with a page that’s not in my pile.
  • I always focus on one thing at a time and “listen” for that feeling in my gut – “Yes, that’s it” and then look for the next item that belongs on the page.
  • Your art is made with one decision at a time. You aren’t going to see the whole thing in your head and then pick out what you need.
  • I start with something that will be a focus on the page – medium size and put it on the page.
  • What would be a good background? Pick it out
  • What are other smaller pieces that fit? (either with subject matter, color, or feel) Pick those out.
  • Now I play around with the placement until I feel that “Yes”. Sometimes I add or subtract elements.
  • imageGlue them down. I use a scrap piece of paper to glue on so I can get all the edges without making a mess.




Altered Book Spread

Here’s a page for me to focus on self care. The heart & goddess went on first. Then the captions for me to journal about. I’ll leave this page until I get the urge to journal and then I’ll finish it.

I do my collage when I have a chunk of time so I can do several pages. That way I can doodle and journal when I don’t feel like getting out all my supplies.

I also go with my energy – if I feel like a big project (usually in the morning) I do it. In the evening I like to reflect, doodle, and bead. Get to know your energy cycles through the day – This might be a good idea to do a page charting your energy flow through out a full day.

The better you know yourself, the better your creativity will flow. If you know what you love to do, you won’t waste time on the “I should s”. This is the reason I’m combining self awareness with creativity – they go hand in hand.

Now for the phrases & words –

Altered Book spread 2 miracles in 1

phrase for altered bookI was drawn to the “2 miracles in 1” part of this add.   Again, I don’t know why yet, but I went with my gut. I tried it out on several pages before I tried at the top of this one.

I’m interested to see how this pages turns out because I don’t know what the miracles are yet!





Words from a magazine for altered book pageAltered Book Page spread with doodlesI tried several pages before “Where Good Times Reside” landed on my doodle page with mystery & imagination on it. That’s perfect for me because that’s where my good times do reside – in the mystery of life and my creative imagination.

"What I Know For Sure" will be a page I journal on
“What I Know For Sure” will be a page I journal on
Between the Lines is always interesting to explore
Between the Lines is always interesting to explore
I'm going to put the 8 Parts of self care here to remind myself
I’m going to put the 8 Parts of self care here to remind myself


This page scare me

This page makes me uncomfortable because there are more times when I don’t feel pretty. I need to readjust my perspective and focus about how I am pretty. I really like the transformation means renewal, but it doesn’t sit well with me – for a good reason. I am led to explore more with these 2 pages.


That’s how I work – 1 step at a time, do what I have the energy for, and play until I get a reaction inside me. Always check in with yourself when you have a deep reaction with anything – that means there’s a cave of mystery for you to explore. Sometimes it’s scary but I’ve always found a beautiful crystal room of inner wisdom & understanding after navigating the scary cave spiders.




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