Summer Mantle Inspiration

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.

Summer is in full swing here in Utah, complete with 100+ degree days.  So. Hot.  My poor kids, who love being outside, come in by 10am with red cheeks and requests for popsicles to try and beat the heat.  Crazy stuff.

Since summer got here, we’ve been busy enjoying the nice weather and playing as much as possible.  As a result, my spring decorations never really got put away and my only summer decoration was the cute pallet art I made a couple months ago.

I knew this needed to be fixed ASAP so I pulled out some wood crafts I’d purchased about a month ago and worked on them in between play dates and hiking and naps and meals.  It’s amazing how long it takes to get things done when you have kids and a house to run!  BUT I got it done last week, the day before we were set to go out of town for our vacation with extended family.  I snapped some pictures and then rushed to pack myself and my kids to leave early the next morning.
As I mentioned in my post for spring/Easter mantle inspiration, I don’t actually have a mantle, just a credenza, that I decorate for each holiday/season.  But obviously this is just to show you what I’ve done and give you some ideas for your own mantle or table.  For your convenience, I’ve listed where I bought each item or the link to how I made it, below the pictures.

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.
White Fence  |  Hobby Lobby
Green Basket  |  Hobby Lobby
Pink Yarn Ball  |  Hobby Lobby
 Mini Orange Table  |  Hobby Lobby
Boy and Girl Swimming block and Hello Summer block  |  The Wood Connection

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.
Summer Mini Block Trio  |  The Wood Connection
Summer Block  |  The Wood Connection

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.
Yellow Flower Wreath  |  JoAnn’s
Burlap Table Runner  |  made by me (tutorial here)

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.
Lemon Wood Craft  |  The Wood Connection
Lemonade vinyl  |  Silhouette machine

Bright colors are my key to decorating for the summertime.
Summer Pallet Art  |  made by me (tutorial here)
Pink and Gold candle  |  Hobby Lobby
Orange Dreamsicle on Mini Post  |  The Wood Connection

And if you’re looking for more creative summer inspiration, I’m participating in a blog hop with some very talented ladies.  Click on the links below to go to their page and see some great ideas!

9 Creative Summer Ideas to get you excited for the summer!

9 Creative Summer Ideas
{from left to right, top to bottom}
Simple Summer Farmhouse Centerpiece  |  Making Joy and Pretty Things
Summer Matching Game – Free Printable  |  Wellies and Lemonade
Summer Mantle Inspiration  |  Sunshine and Munchkins
DIY Summer Wreath  |  Checking in with Chelsea
Farmhouse Style Summer Tablescape  |  Craftivity Designs
Summer Coffee Table Styling  |  Flourishing at Home
Front Porch Summer Decor  |  Restyle It Wright
Summer Tray Makeover  |  North Country Nest
Summer Entertaining Tablescape  |  W. Collective

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Mod Podge Notebook

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

If you are anything like me, you like notebooks.  Big, small, patterned, solid.  I’ve got them scattered around my house and at least three in my diaper bag.  You never know when you’re going to need to make a note or a list.  I’m also one of those people who really likes to write things down and I still have a daily planner.  (My husband buys me a new one every year at Christmas.)

And while deep down I know the purpose of a notebook is just to write things down, another part of me just loves pretty notebooks.  However, I don’t like spending an extra couple dollars just to have a pretty print or a cute quote on the front.  Do you feel the same?

So to make my notebooks cuter, I take advantage of my scrapbook paper fetish and use up some of it on an inexpensive notebook.  I’m sure you’ve seen the composition notebooks at the store.  I found mine at the local dollar store (Dollar Tree).  The front isn’t all that cute and they have these formulas and all sorts of random information on the inside covers that I don’t find useful or pretty.  So I just cover them up and personalize them.   

To make your own notebook, you will need the following:

  • composition notebook
  • mod podge
  • foam brush
  • scissors or paper trimmer
  • 12×12 scrapbook paper
  • vinyl (optional)
  • embellishments (optional)

The first step is to find the scrapbook paper you want to use.  If you’re doing this with a big group, I’d recommend either having everyone bring their own paper or to buy a big pad of 12×12 paper that has coordinating patterns and colors to take some of the guesswork out of it.  (I generally stick to 2-3 pieces of patterned paper.)  Decide which paper you want to use for your main pattern and which will be your accent for the binding.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Cut the main paper in half so you have (2) 6×12 pieces.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Lay the paper on the front of the notebook so there is about 1/2″ overhang on the far right side.  Crease the top and sides so you can see about where to place the paper once you get the mod podge on the notebook.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Using a foam brush, spread the mod podge out on the front of the notebook only covering the area that the 6×12 will cover.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Place the 6×12 paper on top of the notebook.  Be sure to smooth out the bubbles, working from the middle outward.  I have a little plastic tool I use, but you could also use a credit card/gift card to smooth it out.

From here you can do one of two things: 1) cut off the extra paper around the edges, or 2) fold the extra paper around the sides and mod podge it to the inside of the notebook.  I prefer the second option because I think it gives a cleaner look.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Once the front is finished, repeat on the back cover of the notebook.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

For the binding, you will need to take the second paper you chose and fold it around the binding, making sure to overlap the main paper by about 1/4-1/2″.  Crease or mark the paper, then trim it to size.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Brush the mod podge on the back of the notebook binding and the front of the notebook.  Then place the binding of the notebook on the paper first, then roll it onto the front.  This will help you center it.  Then mod podge the back of the notebook and fold the paper onto the back.  Again, make sure to press out the bubbles.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

Trim the overhanging paper on the top and bottom of the binding using scissors.  It’s easier to trim it if you open up the notebook.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

If the inside of your notebook has random formulas and grammar rules like mine did, you can cover those up by mod podging some plain white (or coordinating) cardstock onto the inside.  Easy peasy.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

From here, you can be done if you like how it looks, or you can add more embellishments.

I thought it looked a little plain so I just cut out a couple of words from vinyl using my Silhouette and I think it added just the right touch.

Mod Podge Notebook--A quick, easy and cute way to update a boring composition notebook!

These would make great gifts for family or friends to use as journal or to-do list notebooks.  Another cute idea is to use it as a notebook to pass back and forth between you and your child, writing letters or notes to each other.  You could make these for a craft night with your friends or local church group or even a girls camp craft.  Super easy and super inexpensive.

What would you use your notebook for?