Monday, April 28, 2008


Last year I made this house book from scrap cardboard and various papers, photos and embellishments. I had planned to make a book after Angela Cartwright and Sarah Fishburn published their excellent book, In This House, and I cut my cardboard pages from the template in their book. The Somerset Studio challenge gave me the incentive to make the book to correspond with their "house" challenge last October. Above is a close up of the front door. I used an actual wooden dollhouse screen door and cut the cardboard out to match the shape of the door. I glued on a black doll button to serve as the little door knob. I used copper foil tape to finish all the edges of the door and house. I used a glossy grey polka-dotted scrapbook paper for the two outside walls of the house which I distressed further with Ranger weathered wood distress embossing powder. I wanted my grandparents to be visible from the front through the screen door because I have such a vivid memories of them standing in that doorway when I left from a visit with all of us waving and waving as my family pulled away in their car.
Somerset did not choose my book for publication, but I was overjoyed to have it returned to me. I sent it off without getting any pics of it last October and I had almost forgotten what it looked like. It is chalked full of symbolism for me about my relationship with my grandparents, Leo and Ethel, and I plan to keep it where I can look at it often. It gives me joy just to see it. My grandfather died when I was only 8 and my grandmother joined him later when I was 21. I made the house with only three rooms because that was the size of the little cottage in which they raised 5 children. I constructed a fence in the front of the house with grey card stock and used vintage children's books for the flowers. The chickens were cut from a magazine article. My grandfather played fiddle and there are tiny little copyright free elves (Irish, I'm sure) playing fiddle on the fence.

Here's my grandparents standing inside the front room of their house. I used a scrapbook paper for this room that had all different designs on it because my mother told me that they were so poor during the depression that they had to wallpaper their walls with sample books someone had given there. How ironic since we mixed media folks hold those sample books so dear now. I used a different paper for the "linoleum floor". There was always a lot of singing when my mother's people got together. The song above their head "On the Old Rugged Cross" was my grandmother's favorite and we sang it at her funeral. One time my grandmother was having a hip replacement and the OR got stacked up with patients and she had to wait quite awhile in limbo. My grandmother serenaded the whole singing gospel music. Later her doctor told her she was really out of it and she said, "What do you mean? I knew I was singing, but I had to do something to pass the time." I used a pic of the Deon quintuplets to signify my mother and her four sisters. My mother was the second oldest - symbolized with the pink heart charm over the head of the second baby.

Here's a pic of my parents. The caption underneath reads "When a child is born so is a grandmother." I made the little frame above their head from a little mother of pearl buckle and a vintage baby image.
This page is a collage of things I associate with my grandmother: Christian values, sewing, writing, etc. The little frame contains a little pic of her and my grandfather.

I used a rubber stamp to make the basic window above and then cut a scene from a vintage postcard to create the "scene" in the window. I cut a piece of wood to affixed a piece of vintage lace over the wood for the curtain. "Outside" that's me under the window having a little solitary tea party with a cat and dolls. I was always big on tea parties! (Still am!)
This page is about all the Holidays and Celebrations I spent I my grandparents house. This was definitely a place I associated more with holidays and celebrations because we lived so far apart.

This back cover has a metal gate with a pic of an apple tree cut from a vintage children's book to symbolize my grandparents apple orchard. I think they only had about 5 trees, but they made the best of them by storing them in the root cellar and by cutting up a lot of them and laying them outside on screen to dry. My grandmother made fried apple pies all Winter long from those dried apples. Yummy! I hope you enjoy my house book. I most often give my projects as gifts or trades, but this is a keepsake that I made for myself. I hope that it will inspire you to make one, too.


Susan Ramey Cleveland said...

Glad your house book is home safe. It's beautiful.

leavesofgreen said...

When I was a child the orchard was probably 40 trees strong. There weren't just apples, but apricots,pears, peaches, and the huge sour cherry tree by the hen house. There were also trees around the back of similar kinds. I used to sit in the low limbed trees and snack on the ripe fruit-the juice running down my chin and my hands sticky. The sap would run out of the trees and encase bugs inside which I considered a treasure to keep. I used to pick up the discarded shells of other bugs, too. The orchard was my favorite place if I could keep away from the mean hens. Sissy

miss magpie-pixie said...

I can understand why you do not want to trade this - it`s a very personal item for you trish .
You did wonderful work on it , i love the shape , i see loads of bird house ones , but not a house shape book !

obsessed scrapbooker said...

That is awesome! Thanks for sharing it on your blog! Just beautiful, what a treasure to have back!

Kids Napping? I'm Scrapping! said...

GORGEOUS Trisha! =o)

Nan said...

Wow! That is great! I love it and all it's special meanings. I'm glad you shared it, it's very special in deed.

Summer Gypsy said...

Hi Trish,
This is what art is all about!!! I love your house! What a treasure to pass down! Good to get to visit you again and see all of your super creations! Did you get my email about the Summer Daze altered tin swap? The time has been extended by request to June 15th. Let me know if you are going to play in this one. I sure hope so!!! Have a blessed day!