23 October 2019

It Looks Real at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog

Hi everyone and welcome. It's the start of a new challenge theme over at the The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog. It's Cec's turn to host and this time the challenge is called 'It Looks Real'. "There are so many ways to make something look real when it isn't. For this challenge, make a vintage or shabby chic project with one or more faux elements. Those elements could be faux rust, leather, stitching - to name a few. Make sure you tell us what the faux element is and how you made it because it will look real."

As ever, the Design Team will choose their top four picks, with the winner being invited to join us in a Guest DT spot at The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog and the next three will receive Top 3 Badges to display on their blogs. Everyone who enters and follows the rules will be entered into the draw to have the chance to win a $25 spending spree at The Funkie Junkie Boutique.

For my DT project I've created a Pocket Notebook with a faux leather finish to the covers and faux rusted flowers on top.

Here's how this one came together (click on the photos to see them in more detail);

Take some brown/kraft coloured paper (I used the packaging from my order from Linda) scrunch it up, flatten out again and then gently rub over with a permanent brown ink (I used Acorn Archival Ink) taking care to catch the raised ridges.

Cut two covers from thick board and remove the spine pieces, putting them to one side for use later. Stick the crumpled paper to both sides of each Pocket Notebook cover using Vintage Distress Collage Medium. Apply another coat to the surface of the paper once it's stuck in place.

For this version of the Pocket Notebook I cut away two strips of the spine and stuck them to the cover with black Architape, but you can make the spine as wide as you like.

To make the faux leather darker rub dark brown permanent ink onto the surface (I used Potting Soil Archival Ink). The ink blends over easily because you've made the surface non-porous with the coat of Collage Medium. I found using the Reinker ink on the Mini Blending Tool made this step faster.

At this stage the surface appears shiny. I wanted mine to look more like time-aged, well worn look leather so I sanded back the surface a little and applied a coat of Clear Gesso, allowing it to air dry to a matte finish.

Cutting the pages to go inside the Pocket Notebook is easy with Eileen's new die design. When you get your die you'll see that on one end there are only three cutting edges with the fourth side left free. This means you can cut pages to any width you want and they'll be the perfect length to fit inside your Pocket Notebook. The photo below shows how I've drawn lines onto my die with a pen to mark off different width sizes as a guide so I can cut multiples all the same.

To cut signatures fold several sheets of paper (in this case tea stained copier paper) in half lengthwise (be it standard size in the US or A4 size in the UK). Place the folded paper sheets onto the die Place the folded edge onto the side with no cutting blade overlapping the top of the page cutting edge just a little - the remainder of the paper will hang off the end of the die so that it remains uncut.

You'll see below what happens when you run the paper and die through your cutting machine. Trim away the little bits of excess paper at the top and side, retaining the paper at the bottom for a smaller notebook. I cut several of these and stitched them together before binding them into the inside of the Pocket Notebook covers.

For a second faux finish I decided to replicate the look of an old rusted chain. Paint a piece of card with Umber Acrylic Paint and when dry add a thin coat of diluted Sedona Acrylic Paint.

Dilute some Cheddar Acrylic Paint on your craft mat and dab the card into it, heat setting and re-dabbing until you get the desired look.

Spritz with a little Distress Resist Spray to apply drips and drops over the painted card.

Shake over Chunky Rust Baked Texture Embossing Powder and heat set.

Once dry you can apply further coats of watered down Umber and Cheddar Acrylic Paint until you get the look you want. This will not adversely affect the Embossing Powder. I die cut a couple of the Large Stems flowers from the Faux Rust card.

To provide a contrast between the faux leather and faux rust surfaces I stuck some leftover painted paper (from THIS project) mounted on card and cut it into squares. Lining them up perfectly on the front cover was easy with the Wendy Vecchi STAY-tion.

To finish the front cover I wound wire, wool and beads around the die cut flower stems before sticking them on top of the mounted squares. I also added a small coordinating butterfly from my stash - Linda sells lots of different ones in her store HERE. A beaded twisted wool page holder was attached to the inside of the book spine and a mix of tiny silver plated and bronze bells were attached using jump rings. Here's a closer look at the finished book;

And here's the back of the book showing the finished faux leather look more clearly;

So that's my take on the theme 'It Looks Real' for the current The Funkie Junkie Boutique Blog challenge. My fantastic team mates have created the most amazing projects for this challenge so make sure you hop on over and check them out HERE. And remember to link up your own shabby chic or vintage projects with your choice of faux finish to be in with a chance of winning one of the fabulous prizes.

Thanks for visiting,
Jenny xxx

Products used to create this Faux Finish Pocket Notebook are available from The Funkie Junkie Boutique and are listed/linked below.


  1. Such a rich and detailed leather with a fantastic addition of rusty details! Beautiful notebook and love the painted squares pattern with the fabulous flowers!

  2. That cover is SOOOOO rust-worthy; I LOVE IT!!!

  3. Jenny - another amazing & incredible notebook created by you. I want to touch that wonderfully rich cover - it's just yummy. Thank you for sharing your magic.

  4. Jenny, I have been on the edge of my seat soaking in every detail of your tutorial (and what a fabulous one it is!). Your faux leather is superb--adding the inky layer to deepen the color and then the sanding bit add so much realism to the technique. And it's difficult to tell your rusty card from the rusted bicycle chain! Bravo on a gorgeous journal and a wonderful tutorial! Hugs!

  5. Jenny I am in awe of this "Looks Real" minibook, completely awesome wow!
    Thank you so much for sharing your tutorial, it has inspired me to try something similar, using this technique. Your a very talented crafter....x
    Jane 🌴

  6. Just brilliant and this cover looks like leather...just a WOW!

  7. Fabulous Jenny!! Your leather is so real looking and the rust, is well, truely rusty! :-) Awesome work and tutorial!

  8. The leather looks great, but it's those rusted flowers which have taken my breath away. A fantastic rust effect - love that you had the chain right there for reference as you were creating it. I really like the painted panels too. They look like very expensive stone or marble surfaces - very cool.
    Alison x


Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving your comments - they are really appreciated. Jenny xxx

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