Altered Books Challenge ~ Love is the Only Gold

Altered book with hanging word charm (Marjie Kemper)

Today we're kicking off a new challenge at eclectic Paperie working with Altered Books. I started by gluing together a few pages in an old book, cutting out a window, and coating the top page randomly with a turquoise paint glaze.


The Wendy Vecchi yahoo group has a Four Letter Word challenge (a nice one!) and I used Tim Holtz's new heart stamp from the Valentine Blueprints set for my four letter word. I stamped it on a painted/stenciled heart, cut away the blueprint marks, and heat embossed it with clear powder.


I used loads of stamps to layer up my background using Distress Inks and edging everything with Ranger's black paint dauber. Speaking of paints… have you seen Tim Holtz's new Distress Paints?!?!?  I ordered the whole set from Eclectic Paperie and they arrived last Saturday… I am like a kid in a candy store.  Loads of projects in the works with these!  They really are very different than any paint I've ever worked with… you can see Tim demo them here.

My last step was to attach my heart to the page with XL eyelets using my Crop-a-Dile and string, and then to paint the subsequent page orange so the heart would really pop. I've had that tool for ages and I still use it… I love that it cuts right through grunge and heavy book board.\

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  1. Helen Tilbury on February 15, 2013 at 11:18 pm

    This looks amazing Marjie! I’ve seen this book idea before and always thought ‘how cool’ but need to get me a really sturdy craft knife – my little scalpel would battle with all those layers I think…

  2. Buttons on February 13, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    How striking is this Marjie!! Love the contrast of colours and the text background. Hugs, Jenny x

  3. Lynne Moncrieff on February 12, 2013 at 8:45 am

    The niche is a clever idea and the way the heart is hanging and the idea of matt and shiny.
    So many wonderful elements Marjie.

  4. Geraldine on February 11, 2013 at 5:59 am

    love the colours and the way you used the blueprint stamp

  5. Anna-Karin on February 11, 2013 at 5:43 am

    Fabulous altered book Marjie! LOVE the colours and the hanging heart. Thank you for sharing with us at Simon Says Stamp and Show again!

  6. Kate on February 10, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    The red is a fabulous contrast. It really brings that gorgeous turquoise heart out! Love it!

  7. Broni on February 10, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Oh my goodness! I love these bright, vibrant colors and I really love how you edged everything with the black paint dauber. This is wonderful, Marjie!

  8. Wanda Hentges on February 10, 2013 at 7:30 am

    Love it!!

  9. Brenda Brown on February 9, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Love the niche and stamp you have chosen.
    hugs [brenda] x0x

  10. PetraB on February 9, 2013 at 12:46 pm

    Love the challenge idea, it is a great alteration of the page!

  11. Helen Allen on February 9, 2013 at 12:32 pm

    Gorgeous work Marjie. Love the vibrant colours and how the heart nestles in the pages of the book.

  12. Carolyn Dube on February 9, 2013 at 9:54 am

    Fabulous! Now I want to get out my altered book and start playing with reds and blues! Thanks for the inspiration!

  13. 2amscrapper on February 9, 2013 at 7:55 am

    First–stunning project, Second–way to work those challenges–certainly gave me food for thought, Third– LOVE your choice of EWV 4 letter word. I hope to play before the deadline.

  14. barbarayaya on February 8, 2013 at 9:21 pm

    Marjie i love these colors! You work is fab, , i love color- combo! BArbarayaya

  15. Alie Hoogenboezem-de Vries on February 8, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    Gorgeous Marjie!

  16. Candy Colwell on February 8, 2013 at 5:52 am

    Marjie…I love your bright colors! Love your stamped design and how you’ve mixed Wendy and Tim stamps on this very cool book page. The black twine hanging your heart looks very cool against the red and bright blue also! I bet this is one cool book! Thanks for sharing your art with us at Simon Says Stamp and Show. <3 Candy

  17. Sue C on February 8, 2013 at 2:39 am

    Gorgeous project Marjie ! I love the colour combo you’ve used and the suspended heart is fabulous ! Sue C x

  18. Sharon on February 8, 2013 at 12:55 am

    Wow – as always so gorgeously colured and inspirational!

  19. Anita Houston on February 7, 2013 at 8:01 pm

    Love the way you used your new stamp here…cool! Fab theme too! Love the center, love the heart, love the blue…all fab! Thank you for showing us your magic at Simon Says Stamp & Show this week!

  20. Donna-Marie on February 7, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Wow! The stamping, layering, colors are amazing :-)

  21. Laura S on February 7, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Gorgeous! One of my favorite color combinations. I am so behind on the new products- but I feel like you keep me in the loop! These paints look exciting- I’m going to watch the video. :)

  22. Sandy Dehon on February 7, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    I love your page!

  23. Alexandra on February 7, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    Gorgeous book Marjie. These contrasting colours are so rich and vibrant, love them.

  24. Marjie Kemper on February 7, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    Julia – thank you! – the eyelets are the XL ones that come in that lime green Crop-o-Dile kit (

  25. Silvia on February 7, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    Fantastic colors, great combination. Seems to be a great project, looking forward to the next pages.

  26. Julia on February 7, 2013 at 1:32 pm

    Just love it Marjie!! Your gorgeous background is classic – I’d recognise it as your style anywhere! Love the whole idea behind it too. Wish my eyelets looked that good – what make do you use? I have the crop thingy but they always look a little mangled!
    Beautiful and delicious altered book.

  27. linda on February 7, 2013 at 1:11 pm

    Very cool Marjie! Like the way your used the heart stamp without the registration marks – nice to keep that in mind so thanks for that little tip! I love all the stamps used on the background – adds so much dimension to the page!

  28. Kim Schofield on February 7, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Beautiful! I love all of the details in the background and the pop of color with the heart. So pretty!

  29. kathy/NorthCarolina on February 7, 2013 at 11:40 am

    Oh, so lovely. I love to alter books, but I don’t think I have time to play this time ’round….too much on my plate. But I am so glad you played and created this marvelous altered book. I love the niche you created inside the book! All those beautiful circles (love makes the world go round) and the black border just draws my eye right to the glorious centerpiece. Nicely done!

  30. Redanne on February 7, 2013 at 11:24 am

    Gorgeous, fabulous – wow! Love everything about this, the colours, the matt, the shine, the heart, the words, like I said – everything. Great idea to just use part of the stamps too, makes them much more versatile. I have 7 of the paints on order, cannot wait to get them! Hugs, Anne x

  31. Terry on February 7, 2013 at 11:13 am

    Gorgeous page, Marjie! I just love that burst of color with the mini page and that hanging heart!! Brilliant! So you will have to let me know first hand what you think of the paints! Enjoy the day! Hugs!

  32. Alexa Noble on February 7, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Looks lovely Marjie – beautiful colours as usual and love the heart! X

  33. Mary-Ann M. on February 7, 2013 at 10:29 am

    Love the alphabet up the side and the arrow. The heart is perfect for the time of year. Great great job!Mary-Ann M.

  34. trisha too on February 7, 2013 at 10:25 am

    Marjie, you know I like your style–everything you make attracts me like a moth to a flame!

  35. Judy Shea on February 7, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Marjie.. once again, a beautiful piece of art. The Distress Paints look great and fun. Can’t wait for you to show us what you do with them.

  36. Alison/craftytrog on February 7, 2013 at 9:50 am

    Fantastic page Marjie! Great stamping & the colours are gorgeous! x

  37. Erin Smetak on February 7, 2013 at 8:54 am

    Oh wow! Your book is amazing, Marjie! I love the vibrant colors, and that heart w/ the background behind it is fantastic!!!

  38. Cathy on February 7, 2013 at 8:25 am

    As very, very beautiful as this is — I love the wit that drove you to put this particular message on a page of rules for playing blackjack. Love is the biggest gamble, but what a payoff. A great alteEred piece, especially since love can lead us to be altAred.

  39. jane w. on February 7, 2013 at 8:14 am

    beautiful rich color! love your book!

  40. SanDee1899 on February 7, 2013 at 7:39 am

    This is an outstanding work! Absolutely marvelous! Well done!

  41. Jessica Sporn on February 7, 2013 at 7:20 am

    Fabulous work! I just love your style girl!

  42. Debby on February 7, 2013 at 7:07 am

    Love your page! The window idea is really neat. Hope to get art time this weekend!

  43. Lori on February 7, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Hee! LOVE these colors…you do the greatest color combos!!! All the layers of stamping and so forth is FABULOUS! Thanks for joining the MAC!!

  44. Tracy on February 7, 2013 at 6:29 am

    Wow Marjie, love the colours and the use of the eyelets for the heart . . .I am a hearts kind of girl and yours is extra special . . .gorgeous!
    Thank you so much for joining in with the challenge.

  45. butterfly on February 7, 2013 at 5:51 am

    Wow – how stunning is that?! The blues are stunning – glowing, translucent like crystal seawater… I want to dive in! Love the funky black eyelets, and the suspended heart – a really gorgeous piece, Marjie…
    Alison x
    (Thank you for all your fabulous comments today!!)

  46. Amy* on February 7, 2013 at 5:48 am

    Beautiful Marjie! I adore the blueprint heart stamp attached with the crop-a-dile…and of course all of the lovely blues! Can’t wait to get “schooled” on the new Distress Paints :)

  47. Tracy Evans on February 7, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Gorgeous, I love the niche and your use of colour is always a delight. Love the background stamping too. Thanks so much for joining in the Simon Says Stamp and Show Challenge. Tracy x

  48. Colleen on February 7, 2013 at 5:30 am

    Fantastic page! love the layering of stamps and the colors.

  49. Bonnie Irvine on February 7, 2013 at 5:28 am

    This book makes me happy just looking at it. The colours are so vibrant and rich. Love the effect the black paint dabber gives around the edges…so different from using the ink. Lovely layering of stamps and texture. The coolest part for me is the eyelets and string hanging the heart ove that contrasting background. It’s an unexpected detail that I love. Awesome, Marjie.

  50. Claudine C on February 7, 2013 at 4:45 am

    This is wonderful Marjie, I really love how you cut out the heart and hung it. There is no mistaking one of your pages, you definitely have your own wonderful style.

  51. Julie Tucker-Wolek on February 7, 2013 at 4:01 am

    *sigh* I just loveeeeeeeeeee this! WOW WOW WOW!! I loveeeeeeeee the colors and love love love that HEART!!!!!

  52. Corrine on February 7, 2013 at 3:52 am

    Love the cutouts and multiple layering on this. Enjoy your challenge. xox

  53. Valerie-Jael on February 7, 2013 at 12:39 am

    Gorgeous page, and I love the idea of a four letter word challenge! Valerie