Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Project: Altered Clipboard

As I mentioned in the previous post, my Mom is a very talented quilter and knitter.  For Mother's Day I wanted to make something for her to use when she sews, so I thought I'd alter a clipboard to use to keep instructions close at hand.
I found the wooden clipboard at the Dollar Store.  I had my Dad cut the base for me out of pine.  It has a slanted slit (to hold the clipboard) routed into it.  I chose thinner scrapbook paper in a color that would look nice in her sewing room and matched acrylic paint to the paper. 
*Wooden Clipboard--9.25" x 11.75"
*Base (optional)--4" x 6" x 3/4"
*12 x 12 sheet of scrapbook paper
*Acrylic paint
*Multi-Medium and/or glue
*Brush and/or foam brush
*Craft knife
*Vintage images and/or other embellishments
*Sanding block
*Spray fixative (if using printed images and/or Distress Inks)
*Distress Inks & Waterbrush (optional)
*Ribbon--9.5" length
*Acrylic varnish (optional)

1.   Using your choice of brush, paint the sides and back of the clipboard with acrylic paint.  If you have a base, paint it in the same or coordinating color.
2.  Trim your paper to just a little bit past the clipboard, lining up the paper under the clip as far as it will go.  (See photo below)  Don't worry about cutting out around the clip base just yet.  Make sure the top of the paper is lined up straight and butted against the metal portion under the clip.)
3.  Using a brush, apply a thin layer of  Multi-Medium or glue to the front wood surface of the clip board.  Starting at the top and making sure the paper is straight and butted up against the metal piece under the clip, smooth paper down onto the medium or glue.  Check to make sure that there are no bubbles.  I used a brayer to make sure that the paper was down smoothly.  Wipe any excess glue that squeezes out off of the edges.
4.  Take a piece of the same scrapbook paper you trimmed previously and with the straight edge, butt it up to the top of the piece already adhered.  Don't worry about matching up the design.  Using a pencil, draw around the metal clip portion for a cutting guide.  Cut out marked portion and then adhere to the front of clipboard the same way as the larger piece.
5.  Once all the medium or glue has dried, turn the clipboard over and using a craft knife, trim away the paper that extends past the edges.
6.  Using a sanding block, lightly sand the edges of the clipboard so that they are smooth with no extra paper extending.
7.  Now it's time to decorate the clipboard.  Keep in mind that if you want to use the clipboard to actually write on, don't add any raised embellishments.  I chose to add slightly raised embellishments near the bottom.  That way if my Mom would like to write using it, she still can at the top of the clipboard.
I found vintage sewing art and printed them in black and white on white cardstock.  I then sprayed the images with fixative and used Distress Ink and a waterpen to add the blue coloring.  I mounted these onto brown cardstock and glued them to the clipboard.  Buttons were added with glue below the artwork.  (Note--the button "thread" was knotted and glued on AFTER the clipboard was finished because I wanted the buttons to glue on flat).
8.  To hide the paper seam at the top of the clipboard, I took measuring tape ribbon and glued it over the seams right under the clip.
9.  I also used Distress Ink to color the ribbon and shade the clipboard sides.  I resprayed the entire piece with fixative to set the DI.
10.  Finally, I applied six coats of ModPodge to the front of the clipboard.  I used acrylic varnish to finish the clipboard back and sides and the base.  You could also use ModPodge if you like.

This is a fun, quick and easy project.  You could "bling" up the base and the metal clip if you so desired.  I'm going to put a Quilt Shop gift certificate under the clip and present this project to my Mom on Mother's Day.   I hope she likes it!


Katie said...

LOVE IT...I think I just might have to make me one of these...hope thats ok with you for me to snag your idea..thanks for the turorial on it...this should help me in doing mine...

Gerri Herbst said...

Brillant piece. Just love the images for mom. The stand takes the cake! What no bulldogs?.(Just kidding , tee hee)take care dearie, gerri

Paper Squirrel said...

Love it & Mom will too!

Kathy Eddy said...

What a lovely gift. I am sure she will love it!

bonnie32002 said...

Great idea for a personalized gift...the stand is great! Too bad I don't know a woodworker with tools!!

Marjie K said...

Looks great! I'm sure she'll love it.

Anonymous said...

Fantastic job!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I have done the clipboards n the past for my kids but never for myself. And I too quilt and sew so this is very fitting for me. I love the base u had made. That is new for me so will b adding that. Thank u so much for the inspiration. Love it and u done a fabulous job. TFS