August 6, 2009

Mass Production...assembly line style

I love to create projects in mass production mode. But so often, I hear that stampers don't create this way because they don't know how to, or simply don't take the time to do it. It's a great way to get lots of projects done for gifts, to fill your stash basket, or to simply use up some of those supplies you have been saving to use.

When I mass produce(which means making more than one like item at a time), I like to work in an assembly line. To get a visual, think of that old I Love Lucy episode where Lucy gets behind in the chocolate factory. I also think of my mom who told me she once worked at Hallmark and her favorite assembly line jobs were gluing feathers and adding glitter to cards.

So you wanna see what I made? I always like to take gifts for my friends at CHA, so I decided to make some cute journals for the Papertrey girls. When working in mass production style, it's always smart to have a good idea of what you want to create in advance. I had a sketch drawn out and knew just what I wanted to do. I usually make one finished piece first or just lay it all out so that I know everything fits together good. When mass producing, I finish each part of the finished pieces in steps, then assemble all the pieces....I don't finish one notebook one at a time.

I started out by stamping lots and lots of picnic baskets from Vintage Picnic onto patterned paper. I used two October Afternoon designs and one design from Papertrey's Green Tea Leaves patterned paper pack(the Aqua Mist color). I knew I wanted 3 baskets on each of my notebooks, so I stamped 27 baskets to make 9 finished notebooks. I used a W3 Copic Sketch Marker to add some shadows to the picnic baskets. So: stamp baskets, add marker color, cut out with fine tip scissors. What a cute little pile.
Next up, I wanted one of each Vintage Button colors of New Leaf, Aqua Mist and Melon Berry. I hand picked each button from my stash, laid them all out and tied them with Vintage Jute Twine. Gotta love the buttons!
Then to save some time, I printed my sentiments onto Kraft cardstock using my computer. I punched out 9 scalloped circles, stamped 9 loopy circles from Borders and Corners Circles(one of my favorite stamps of all time), stamped 9 little leaf images and then inked all 9 circles with Vintage Cream ink. I did each step times 9. I also cut out 9 strips of the orange/cream ribbon (Martha Stewart) and 9 strips of the green/orange stripe ribbon.
Then it was time to do something else like make supper or break up fighting redheads. Interruptions happen often when mass producing, so be prepared. I like to gather up all my goodies and place them in separate containers (like my vintage tin molds found at antique shop). This way, I can keep all my little pieces organized and come back to them later. Or if I need to work on another project, I can easily push this project aside and come back to it later.
Now it's time to assemble my notebooks. The notebooks are junior notepads that are cut in half (Kinkos or any place that can make cuts)...final notebook measurement is 2.5" x 8". Cardstock cover goes around the front, left hand spine and back of the notebook. I use Scor-Tape to adhere back of notebook to the cardstock. Also click on the *notebooks* label at the end of this post to see more of my notebooks. I first cut, scored and folded my notebook covers using Ripe Avocado paper. Polka Dots from Polka Dot Basics were stamped using Versamark ink. Then I cut and stamped Kraft cardstock pieces using SU! Only Orange ink and Polka Dot Basics II. All edges were inked with Vintage Cream ink.
Below you can see the notebook covers with the polka dots. The actual notebooks are called junior note pads and can be found at any office supply store or office supply aisle.
I then adhered all the polka dot pieces to the notebook fronts. Next up is adhering all the fun embellishments. I sorted my pieces into 9 separate little piles. This way, I could sort my basket patterns and get the buttons all lined up correctly. I then went to work and adhered all of the pieces to the notebook fronts.
Next up, I up adhered the sentiment circles to the notebook fronts with pop dots. I also adhered the ribbon snippets and then trimmed them with scissors.
And here's my finished pile of notebooks. My favorite part of mass producing is seeing all of my finished projects grouped together. Makes me smile big time!
Here's a little close up shot of the sentiment circles and the ribbon.
And I couldn't forget to add a hand stamped circle to the back, using Trademarks and orange ink on Kraft cardstock.
I packed all these goodies up and had them ready to hand out at CHA! The Papertrey gang loved them, especially Jane and Julie! I tried to give my notepad to David but he didn't want to be teased by the guys at work. Totally understandable, David!

I hope you think about mass producing once in a while. You don't have to do it every time but it's sure a great way to tackle gifts, Christmas cards and to just fill up your stash. It's so nice to have some extra cards and gifts on hand. Good luck, Lucy!

61 comments:

Rene' Sharp said...

This is a fantastic post Mish!! I think I may have to use this idea for teachers gifts at the end of my kids school year. Thanks again for the wonderful inspiration!! Hugs

Katy Frame (Kate Creates) said...

I love these!

Dana Gustafson said...

Cute Mish! I love your skinny notepad projects. Each one is adorable and this is no exception! THanks for sharing!

Nancy said...

So stink-in cute. Love all your little JR pads. I have joined the bandwagon and love making these notepads. I think Office Max is tired of me coming up to the counter to have them cut the pads. Thank you so much for your constant inspiration!

Cynthia said...

Mish you make the cutest gifts,cards everything you really have a gift.I love your blog its the BEST!Thanks for always sharing would love to meet you one day in person.Thanks agaian.

Margaret Anne Clark said...

These are so beautiful, Mish! I REALLY hope that my handmade gifts make people feel as special sa recieving one of these would make me!! XX

Suzanne :O ) said...

I love to mass produce- it helps me use up lots of stash! :D Thanks for sharing your technique- you're very organized! I always get so excited when I see that you've posted something new.. your blog is one of my favorites; I love your style! Just thought you should know :) :) :)

patriciad said...

If I've said it once, I've said it a hundred times: Cute!! ;-)

Charlene said...

Always great ideas...now how do you keep your work area so neat??!!
;-)

Patti J. said...

Great timing for your blog entry, Michelle! I got an order yesterday for 110 baby birth announcements, and this will be very helpful!!! (I think even using YOUR methods, I will be busy for a while with these!) Thanks - your project is wonderful!

Kay said...

I'm one of those odd stampers who doesn't mind mass producing cards - just so you know there are some of us out there!

Michelle said...

What a great to do list for those of us who are looking to make a mass prduced item.. Your GREAT with the walk through.. your directions are clear, and concise! You take great photos too!! I LOVE making these mini notebooks and I received you vintage picnic set and sentiments from my b-day wish list!! WOO HOO!! Color me HAPPY!

Julie Masse said...

Fabulous project Mish!! LOVE these little notebooks and the different patterned picnic baskets you used! Going to play with my new set today! :)

Melissa said...

These are too cute! Such a nice gift! I love the orange ink too ;)

Cheryl (aka CherylQuilts) said...

Michelle, these are awesome! Your mass production puts mine to shame...but I agree...once you've found a great card, make more! It's the only way I can keep up with all the cards I want to send. Thanks for your usual fabulous inspiration!
(P. S. I've got my pads cut and ready to go...and now my vintage picnic...so I'm going to try one of these...finally! Haha!)

Lynne said...

WOW! I love those! What a great idea ~ So simple, yet so heart-felt -- nothing says love like a hand-made gift ~ Your blog is inspiring and I plan on saving it to see what other great things you create~ Thanks so much!

~ Lynne (Virginia)

Hope said...

Thanks for the great tips on mass producing! I love to mass produce especially teacher gifts-you know you don't one teacher to get jealous if someone elses is cuter! LOL! :)

Maybe the teachers & secretary will be getting a cute little notepad to start their year off right...and maybe add some chocolate too. :)

Debbie R. said...

Love these notepads! I need to try to make some soon. Did you cut your ribbon or turn it under itself? I never know what to do with the ends to make them look good and not ravel. Thanks for another great post!

ashjoy said...

I love this idea,I don't have a Kinko's but going to try to figure something out to make them. If you need my addy to send Dave's along for a sample just let me know;)

Thanks for another great tip!

Have a great day!

Kathy W said...

Great post! I am excited about how you sort embellishments...I have my grandma's jello molds in the bottom of a drawer in the kitchen and never use them. I'm going to go relocate them to my craft room. Perfect for buttons and brads...thanks for the idea...plus I think my Grandma would smile if she knew what I was using them for.

Vicki said...

What great tips Mish. Great idea and so thoughtful!

Laurel said...

My word, you are such an inspiration!

Debbie Nelson said...

Love your notebooks...I had never thought about having notebooks cut...these are too cute and will make great gifts for my Bible study friends! Thank you for sharing!

Tami McBeain (tmarie) said...

Adorable project Mish! I always enjoy seeing your creative process.

cplaxco143 said...

love your note pads. I like to mass produce also. I make Thank You cards for our clients at Thanksgiving. 175! Made 125 wedding cards for a wedding this summer. The repetition is meditative. I can also take parts of the cards and work on them while sitting with my family.

Thanks for sharing.

yvette said...

I love to mass produce too. Helps to have lots of cards on hand

iluvmybugs said...

Thanks so much for the idea and easy-to-follow directions!!! Look forward to future posts...great blog!!!

scrappingnana said...

These are adorable. Thanks for the step by step tutorial. TFS
JoAnn

Debbie Fisher (debbiedee) said...

awesome! These would make great gifts for the teachers whose rooms I'm in with my SPED students!

Chris said...

Thank you for reminding me that it's important to make more than one of something! You make it look so easy - your work is always perfect!!

wanda50 said...

Thanks Mish for sharing this technique again. I love to do that too! I first learned this from you awhile back and used it a lot for projects and cards. You're among the best. I was so excited when I found a few of those tin molds too. You inspire me beyond belief. Be blessed and keep on being a blessing to this papercrafting addiction of ours! :0)

Juls said...

fab cards!!

BethieJ said...

OH I LOVE THESE!! I LOVE THEM ALL!! (I looked at every link you shared..) so many GREAT ideas.. I think the kiddos and I need to run to Staples today and buy some and get some cut... what FUN gifts for the grandparents.... (whom we will see next week)
THANKS for such an INSPIRING blog.. LOVED the CHA photos too!! Looks like a FUN time! :)
(sorry for the NOVEL of a post.. I just was so excited and had lots to say! HA HA!!!)
Have a WONDERFUL weekend!

muriel said...

Thanks michelle, I love to see how you work, very helpful. thanks for sharing

Sue said...

First of all let me say I love your note pads. I am definitely going to try to make a few myself. Secondly, I have to give you a big thanks for sharing your mass production assembly line idea. We are making a huge amount of cards for the holidays and this really helped me decide how to get started & stay organized.

Heather said...

Mass production is the best way to get things done! I have done this with Xmas cards, too. I often make only 5 or 6 of one colour scheme but use the same design (as in one sheet of PP per set) and line them all up to make. Oh, and I have old muffin tins (bakes muffins even with paper liners waay too dark)that I use to store all the mini embellies. Less chance of them tumbling away :)
Thanks for sharing ideas - love them all!

Donna K said...

This is such a good idea - I never seem organized enough to do it but I'm keeping this for inspiration. It always makes me chuckle when I see a bin of buttons or circles, etc. in your blog. I have a cat who scopes out my craft area looking for things to get into or push onto the floor. She has figured out how to unsnap a plastic storage bin so many mornings I find ribbons coming up the stairs from the basement or on my bed when I wake up. Naughty, but she always makes me laugh.

Melissa said...

Super cute little notebooks! =) I love to mass produce. I do it the same way-one finished product and them assembly line for the rest. Since I sell my cards, I'd rather have more than one of each design. (makes it a lot easier if they want more, or if someone else likes it too, instead of getting all the supplies back out) And it goes much faster when you already know what you're going to do.

Thanks for the constant inspiration! I look forward to reading your blog every day.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mish! I love how you have cut down those pads. I dont' have a kinkos, have you had any luck at a staples. I have tried mom and pop printing shops and they said they can't cut them. I know I live small town, but geez! Thanks! Heidi Quick

Peggy said...

Another amazingly cute project that is very doable! I love everything about them. Your button holders caught my eye- I inherited some of those little cups/molds from my MIL- now I have a more gentle use for them, thanks to you. You're a constant source of inspiration!! Thank you!

resmith said...

Wow!! Mish these are fantastic! I am going to give this a try. I have many sisters-in-law that would love something like this.

liannallama said...

what a fabulous project! I love doing assembly-line style--it makes me feel so organized. I keep everything in zip-lock so the cats don't play with it, LOL!

Debbie Olson said...

Mish, these are fabulous, and I feel very blessed to have one--thank you, thank you!

loriaj61 said...

Those are so cute! I still use the Holiday Gift book you made as my "To Do" List. It works perfectly. I can tuck coupons in it notes, etc. I have changed the covers to say "To Do List" and decorate them by season or favorite color and give them as gifts! Thanks for the new idea.

Karen D said...

Ah, I see you are putting your Industrial Engineering degree to good use! Love how you laid this out for us. I do 150 Christmas cards every year and follow many of the "rules" you describe. AND YES, I so agree with you, it is amazing to step back when you are finished and look at the pile of completed products! (ignoring the fact that you still have to address them, if you are me!). I really love the notebooks you do and (note to self) MUST make some to have on hand for the last minute gifts. Perhaps we could include a Gift List notebook in this years "To/From" Gift Tag Holiday set! hmmmmmm! As always, more inspiration from Mish!

Deanna said...

Ghasp omg you are awesome! Love these!

Abi said...

Great step by step for mass production, I love it. TFS. BTW what is the name of the font that you used for the computer generated labels?
Thanks again, you're terrific

Linda S. said...

Mish, This post is so inspirational. I love how you have laid it out for us, step by step, photo by photo. My question is the same as one of your other fan's...where is your MESS?? Do you have two or three large areas where you can work, like a cutting area, a stamping station, an embossing station, etc.?? After I "mass produce" just two cards, I am left with a clean area on my desk approx. 5" x 5"!!! Believe me,....photos will not be following.lol Thanks. Linda S. in NE

Heather said...

Our family has a set of party invitations to complete this weekend and we love the assembly line style. I try to make some "easy posts" on the line for our 5 and 2 year olds.
I love the picnic basket...adorable!

veronica said...

i always appreciate your assembly line tutorials. i just bought some of these notebooks, and had them cut at office depot. i can't wait to create a cover for them. THANKS so much for the ideas!

Tracy said...

I love the idea :) Am never that organised as I always change my mind half way through but think I might have to try this one for my christmas cards and stick to the plan! Thanks for your post :) Love the design.

starsandcards55 said...

i was so excited to read your post on assembly line production.... i haven't attempted to make these adorable notepads, but have done lots of multiples - mostly invitations (baby & bridal shower, birthday & graduation party, christmas and thank you cards, wedding service programs and menus for the reception) i make my prototype first, calculate all the materials needed, then begin stamping, cutting, punching etc. and assembling everything. whew! love your blog and all the inspiration.... after reading it, i feel i know you! would have loved to come to cha... maybe next year (i can dream, can't i?!)
pke

Savor the Journey said...

What a darling bunch'o gifts!

~Tex

Justine said...

Wonderful post & tutorial. These are super adorable, I'm sure they were loved by all (even David)

Creative Mish said...

Beautiful!!! I love the baskets stamped on the paper! I must do that, too!

Wendi said...

I don't know you but I love you!!! Your work is amazing, your Blog is my favorite, and you are a teacher! (Me too) Thanks again for another great idea. I love to mass produce too. As a teacher I seem to do that a lot. Thanks again for all the ideas. You are wonderful!

Beth said...

Just wanted you to know that I placed a link on my blog to yours for the Notepads! You are wwaaayyy talented! Love your blog too! Spent most of the morning browsing!

http://bethybrat-bloomingwhereimplanted.blogspot.com/

Take Care -
Beth

cjguth said...

Love this to do list project. Could u tell us how big of paper u used to wrap the tablet and where did u score. Thnks

Ayesha said...

I'm so glad to find out that my husband is not the only one who refuses to take my projects to work ! (lol). While my projects are never as cool as yours, I'm really glad to find out that my mass project steps kind-of follow yours. Thank you so much for sharing. You rock.

City Girl Scrapper said...

So dang cute... I also do assembly line, seems like you can get so much more done like that.. I will have to do some of these for all of my scrappin' friends.. thanks so much for sharing..

Loretta Rodger said...

FAB -- So love this idea. Who makes the stamp?

Related Posts with Thumbnails