Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Pop 'n Cuts Winter Star Book

Today I'm sharing a star book that was inspired by a childhood memory. Growing up, I was a huge bookworm. My family lived out in the country, miles from everything, and reading was one of my main forms of entertainment. When I was about eight, I remember receiving the most amazing pop-up book from my grandma. It opened up completely and stood alone, each spread of pages featuring a different room in a house. I was captivated! Here was a book I could not only read, but interact with! It was the best of all worlds.

It's no secret that I'm more than a little obsessed with Karen Burniston's Pop 'n Cuts system. Creating a book like this would be overwhelming if I had to try to cut and measure and figure out each fold. Having the engineering done for you means you can spend all your time on the fun part - decorating!

What I love about this project is that it can be enjoyed as a book, but when open, can stand on its own and act as a decorative element. I will also tell you that you can get just a little caught up in decorating this type of book (I used over 20 dies. A record for sure!). The Pop 'n Cuts platform add so much dimension - it truly makes your dies come to life.

die cutting
Begin by die cutting a 5 1/2" x 10 1/2" piece of white cardstock using the Pop 'n Cuts Circle Insert Die and the Alterations Large Base Tray. Use the instructions in Karen Burniston's video tutorial found here to create an over-sized card. To make it easier to keep everything aligned, I made a tick mark on either side of my Base Tray that lines up with the center score mark on the die. I also marked the center of my paper. If you keep these marks lined up, your card should be nice and straight. Repeat with four more pieces of paper.

After die cutting, fold according to instructions and trim ends so that your piece measures 5 1/2" tall and 5" wide when closed. Repeat with other die cut pieces.

Using a variety of Christmas-themed rubber stamps, stamp images inside die cut cards using Pumice Stone ink, covering paper. Repeat for all five die cut pages. Note: make sure you have your paper correctly oriented when stamping. The pop-up should be on the right side.

Now we can start decorating our panels! The most important thing to remember in this step is that you need to make sure that anything you mount on the pop-up will not hang over the edge when the page is closed. You can use temporary adhesive to check placement before adhering your elements permanently. 

Panel 1:
  • Die cut one pine tree and two reindeer from chipboard. Ink edges with Pumice Stone. 
  • Die cut one pine tree from green Kraft Core'dinations. Tear off trunk portion and adhere to top portion of chipboard tree. Apply Snow-Tex to edges and adhere to left side of card. 
  • Attach standing reindeer to front of tree using pop dots. Attach leaping reindeer to pop-up area, using pop dots. 
  • Die cut a wreath from green Kraft Core'dinations using the Opening Door and Wreath die. Die cut a small bow from red Kraft Core'dinations using the Mini Bunny and Bow set. Attach the bow to the wreath and place around reindeer's neck.
  • Using Tattered Poinsettia die, die cut red Kraft Core'dinations. Die cut one Mini Poinsettia from the same paper. Using the medium and small flower from the Tattered Poinsettia die, and the Mini Poinsettia, stack and adhere, using foam squares. 
  • Die cut two leaves from green Kraft Core using the Tattered Poinsettia die and adhere as shown. 
  • Bunch up a piece of silver Tinsel Twine and glue to center of flower. 
  • Die cut a banner from white cardstock using the Tattered Banner die. Attach Chit Chat stickers and adhere to Memo Pin. Apply a dab of adhesive to the bottom of pin and glue behind flower.
  • Cut two strips of decorative paper and adhere to top of panel.
Panel 2:
  • Die cut lamppost from chipboard using the Holiday Lamppost die. Paint with a silver Dabber and then brush with black Stazon ink. Cut a small piece of plastic from discarded packaging and adhere behind lamp. Adhere lamppost to right side of card, as shown. Die cut holly leaves and berries from Kraft Core'dinations, using the lamppost die. Attach to lamppost.
  • Die cut Old Jalopy from black Kraft Core'dinations and chipboard. Sand lightly, assemble and adhere to pop-out, creasing back edge to fit the fold. 
  • Die cut the mini pine tree from green Kraft Core'dinations. Sand edges and tie to jalopy using Paper Twine.
  • Die cut wreath from green Kraft Core'dinations. Sand edges and adhere to front of jalopy. Die cut a bow from red Kraft Core'dinations using the Mini Bow die and glue to top of wreath.
  • Die cut the edge of decorative paper panel using the Brackets On the Edge die and adhere to the left side of the card. Die cut a ticket from coordinating paper using the Mini Ticket die. Punch holes in the top and bottom and tie with white Paper String. Adhere word stickers to ticket.
Panel 3:
  • Die cut two trees from chipboard and two from green Kraft Core'dinations using the Pine Tree die. Tear off the trunk on the green trees and adhere to the chipboard trees. Sand edges and apply Snow-Tex.
  • Repeat the process using the Mini Pine Tree die. Adhere all trees to the card as shown.
  • Die cut a deer from chipboard using the Mini Reinder die. Tie a length of Striped Paper Twine around its neck and adhere to tree.
  • Die cut four banners from red Kraft Core'dinations using Karen Burniston's Flagpole with Lantern and Sign strip die. Die cut letters to spell Noel from white cardstock using Alphabetical strip die. Adhere letters to banners and attach to a length of Paper String. Staple to card using Tiny Attacher.
  • Adhere a strip of decorative paper and a coordinating sticker on the left panel. Embellish with Christmas Muse Token.
Panel 4:
  • Die cut cardinal and branches once from chipboard, red Kraft Core'dinations, and green Kraft Core'dinations using the Christmas Cardinal die. Trim the legs from the red piece and adhere the body to the chipboard bird die cut. 
  • Clip the feet from the branch and reverse the branch (it faces the other direction and won't fit unless you turn it around). Adhere green branches over the chipboard to give a two-tone effect. Add shading around eye area and adhere a gold Kraft Core'dinations beak. 
  • Adhere the branches to the pop-up area using pop dots. Perch cardinal on branch and attach to pop-up area using pop dots. Apply Snow-Tex.
  • Adhere sticker border along bottom edge. Apply chipboard sticker to top right panel.
  • Die cut snowflakes from Mirrored sheet using Mini Snowflakes dies. Remove backing and adhere randomly on card.
Panel 5:
  • Die cut one house from red Kraft Coredinations, one from kraft cardstock, and one from white mat board using the Rickety House die. Trim the roof portion from the kraft house and emboss with the Stripes Texture Fade. Adhere to the top of the red house.
  • Create window frames by trimming around the mat board house windows. Adhere to the red house. Cut panels to simulate window glass from plastic packaging and adhere behind windows. Attach house to pop-up panel.
  • Die cut fence from chipboard using On the Fence die. Paint with Distress Crackle paint. When dry, adhere to front of house with pop dots. Decorate with silver Tinsel Twine.
  • Die cut a wreath from green Kraft Core'dinations using Opening Door and Wreath die. Die cut a bow from red Kraft Core'dinations using the Mini Bow die. Adhere bow to wreath and attach wreath to house.
  • Die cut tree from green Kraft Core'dinations and attach to right panel.
  • Apply a chipboard sticker to the left side of the card. Die cut decorative paper using the Vintage Lace die and adhere above and below sticker.
  • Add a layer of Snow-Tex to various elements as desired.
Now that our inside pages are decorated, we need to make the structure of the star book. Cut five pieces of red cardstock measuring 5 1/2" high by 12" wide. Cut five pieces of kraft cardstock measuring 5 1/2" high by 11" wide.

We'll use one of the red panels to create the cover for the book. Fold panel in half. Die cut decorative paper using the Bracket Frame and Label die. Adhere as shown, raising the center portion up with pop dots. Next, die cut Noel from chipboard using Vintage Noel die. Apply Glue 'n Seal to surface and cover with silver glitter. When dry, adhere to center of cover using pop dots. Die cut a small wreath and bow using the Mini Wreath die. Emboss with Holly Texture Fade, sand lightly, and hook over Noel piece as shown. Attach a Charm Clip to the right side of the card (this will be used to hold the book closed).

Fold the red and kraft panels in half. Organize your pages in preferred order. Now let's assemble our book!

Apply one to two strips of a strong adhesive on the outer edge of the back side of a kraft panel. It's hard to see, but there is about a 1/2" strip of adhesive.

Carefully align the edge of the kraft paper with the left edge of a red panel. Repeat on the other side. You only want the outer left and right edges of the pages to be affixed. The rest should remain open.

Next, apply adhesive to the left edge the decorated panel, line it up with the kraft and red panels and press to adhere. Repeat with the right side. We've just made our first page! Repeat this process with the rest of your pages.

When all pages have been assembled, you can begin the final book assembly. Beginning with the panel that has the decorated front cover, apply adhesive to the back as shown. Carefully adhere the back of the panel to the front of the next panel. Continue until all pages are connected.

Before adhering the final page, attach a Charm Clip to the right side of the last panel. This will work as the clasp to hold the book closed.

Here is what your book will look like when all pages are connected. Cool, right? When the book is completely open, the front and back covers will meet, forming the final point of the star. To hold the book open, retie the ribbon, connecting the covers.

To complete book, thread a length of ribbon through the Charm Clips and tie. After my book was done I also added a little kraft banner cut using the Tattered Banners die and spelled out Joyeux using the Typeset die.

I hope you enjoyed my project. It is truly a labor of love that will give you a keepsake to treasure or to share with someone very special. Even if you don't have time to create an entire book, you can choose one 'scene' and make a unique card!

See you next month,


pattern paper: My Mind's Eye- All is Bright
surfaces: Tim Holtz Idea-ology Mirrored Sheets; chipboard
cardstock: red, white, kraft
stamps: Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous; Artistic Outpost
ink: Tim Holtz Distress Ink - Pumice Stone; Stazon - black
paint: Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint - Picket Fence
glitter: Tim Holtz Rock Candy Dry Glitter; Martha Stewart Silver Glitter
embellishments: Tim Holtz Idea-ology- Christmas Muse Tokens, Tinsel Twine, Striped and Solid Paper Twine, Crinkle Ribbon, Seasonal Chit Chat Stickers, Memo Pin
adhesive: Beacon 3-in-1 glue, Zip Dry; Scotch Tape Glider; Glue Dots; Ranger Glue 'n Seal
tools: Tim Holtz Idea-ology Sanding Grip, Tiny Attacher
other: DecoArt Snow-Tex; plastic packaging

Visit our Christmas Books gallery at for more die cutting project ideas!
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  1. WOW WOW WOW!!!!! I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE this....just Fabulous Shelly!! I was going to try and do a Star Book With the Accordian Album I think it would be perfect for this as well.....
    You are Amazing Girly!!! xo

  2. WOW Shelly! This is absolutely amazing! What a fabulous idea, a beautiful book and an ornament at the same time, and you can turn it around and see a different scene every day. Love all the little scenes you created and the stamped background paper is so pretty.

  3. I love love this book--love all the dies you used
    thanks for sharing

  4. Everything about this knocks my socks off, Shelly! Each card is a masterpiece on its own and then when you combine them . . . SWOON!!!! Thank you for showing off the Pop 'n Cuts so masterfully. WOW!

  5. That is just fantastic Shelly. I know just the kind of book you are talking about too--my children love them. This is definitely a labor of love so I hope you enjoy it for a long time!

  6. OMG ... this is the most amazing star book ever! You are so talented, creative and generous. Thank you for sharing and inspiring. Thanks, also for all the tips. They really help us create a better project.

  7. Oh my flipping gosh! That is truly amazing and I love every inch of it! I had toyed with something along those lines but wasn't sure I could pull it off. Now that I've seen yours I'm glad I didn't...I'll just 'ooh' and 'aah' over yours. Thank you so much for sharing your gift with us!!!

  8. Oh my WOW!! Gorgeous project! Thank you so much for sharing it!...Nancy :o)

  9. This is a truly spectacular book- and yes I think you win the prize for most dies EVER! Beautiful work!

  10. WOW, WOW, WOW...not in a million years would I think of this, shelly you are AMAZING!! I love a clever girl!

  11. No wonder you are a designer! This book is absoultely amazing, thanks for the great tutorial. I can hardly wait to try it. Three girlfriends and I made your amazing Halloween 3D house, we had so much fun making it. Thank you!! Happy Holidays!!

    Debbie Emmons

  12. How fabulous! I've made these before but this one is just amazing...and I think it is the pop ups that really make it special. Guess I'm going to have to add it to my wish list.

  13. Shelly - that is amazing - the fact that you figured out how to put that together shows your depth of creativity. i love it!

  14. You used 31 items to make this wonderful book. I love how it turned out.
    Wonderful job.
    Anchorage, Alaska

  15. Shelly, you are amazing! I want to create just like you when I grow up!

  16. This is jaw dropping amazing!!!!! I love it! I want to make a star book. I am making a sizzix wish list right now, hey santa are you listening! Thankyou for this awesome tutorial. Thank you for this inspiring art project. I always loved and still do pop up books.
    Jacquelene L.

  17. So creative...Thank you for sharig.

  18. amazing tutorial for this star book! LOVE it!

  19. OH MY GOSH SHELLY! This is just totally AMAZING! I've got the biggest smile on my face right now! It's just too cool for words! What a wonderful project! I just love this! You totally rock Shelly! ROCK!

    Thank You So Much For The Tutorial!


  20. Shelly, Shelly, ... SHELLY !!! OMG that is just OVER THE TOP AWESOME!!!

  21. thanks so much for showing us how to make such a beautiful book

  22. OMG this is absolutely stunning!!!!!! I must put this die on my wish list for Christmas now.

  23. This is amazing, Shelly! You are soooooo clever. All I can say now is SHOW US MORE!!!!!!
    - DebbieK
    d kaste at wi dot rr dot com

    1. Thanks, Debbie! Make sure you leave a comment over on my blog to enter to win Karen's dies.

  24. Wow, this is absolutely amazing.What a beautiful book, treasured for all Christmases to come.Thank you for taking photos along the way, so we can see each step. Great explanations!

  25. Stupendo!!!! Che bella idea alternativa!!!!
    Grazie x averlo condiviso!!!

  26. Incrediable Shelly, all the dies and all the work, truly a labor of love!

  27. this project is AWESOME, Shelly! Great repurposing of the Pop 'N Cut! A definite yes on my to-do list - thank you for your innovation!

  28. Where do you get your charm clips? I've done some research & can't find anything like yours shown. Love the project too!


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