Sunday, March 25, 2012

Ali Manning: 5 Ways to Alter Book Pages

For my last tutorial on Gingersnap Creations, I decided to combine two things I love - vintage book pages, and clean and simple (CAS) projects. In keeping with our theme, I used some book pages from 'the last century' and created some simple projects that show you how to alter old book pages.

1. Sponge & Punch

It doesn't get much simpler than this! Sponge on a variety of ink colors onto old book pages. Let them dry, punch out shapes and use on a project. I made a card with my punched butterflies and embellished the centers with rhinestones.

2. Stain & Stamp

For this card, I stained a piece of vintage ledger paper with Ranger's Distress Stain. I like this product because it's not too wet and the paper doesn't wrinkle. This is important because some old book pages are fragile. Once completely dry, I stamped the butterfly collage image with Versafine black ink and clear embossed it.

3. Stenciling

There are some amazing new stencils on the market at the moment. I particularly like this lacy butterfly stencil from The Crafters Workshop. I used a stipple brush and three shades of Distress Ink to create this accordion journal cover.

4. Book Page Background Die-Cuts

I wrote a tutorial almost 2 years ago (yikes!) called Book Page Backgrounds and still use the technique a lot. Basically, a background is created by adhering small pieces of book page onto a base and once dry, it is layered with gesso and inks. The full tutorial is here.

For this card, I created a book page background, sponged on green and yellow inks (no gesso) and ran it through a die-cutting machine with a butterfly die. It's one of my favorite card layouts to use! It's so simple, but each butterfly is unique and interesting.

5. Sponging

Sometimes an old book illustration is so gorgeous that it doesn't really need any altering! I found this insect illustration and fell in love with it. It's perfect just as it is!

When I color copied it (if you do this, make sure you're complying with copyright laws), the background was very white and new looking. So, out came the Antique Linen ink to give the edges a little character. I covered some chipboard with it and made a little notebook.

What are you waiting for? Give new life to old books by altering them a little and make some fun projects!


  1. fab selection of ideas, i'll definately give these ago. just need to find an old book that i can bare to rip up. x

  2. Great techniques! I love the look on all the finished ones!

  3. Fabulous ideas Ali and some that I will be able to use for definite. Thanks for this. xox

  4. Beautiful work! Thank you for the fun and interesting tutorial!

  5. Fabulous ideas, Ali.....and I'm lov'n that paper.

  6. Love your ideas, Ali. Off to try some now. :)

  7. Fabulous tutorial and ideas. Some might be simple but with stunning results!
    i remember your butterfly book page one. Love that!
    hugs Lynn

  8. Love your work! I'm still trying to get out of my box, on the altering thing. Lol Thanks for the inspiration. Hugs Brenda

  9. Wonderful projects! I think CAS is so hard- but you are the master and love the inspiration!

  10. Another fab inspirational demo

  11. Beautiful examples of some great techniques! I'm going to give them a try next weekend!

  12. Love all the techniques and the cards. Great inspiration. xx

  13. Great projects! TFS these techniques. A couple are new-to-me and I will try them soon. :)

  14. All great techniques. Thanks so much for sharing them...can't wait to try them myself!!

  15. Thanks for these great examples. So simple and easy yet beautify.


Thanks for your wonderful words!

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