DIY – Bookmarks

Last week I went into Michael’s to get kraft paper card stock.

I left instead with a giant batch of neon cardstock.

At the time I had no idea why I was walking out with the giant batch of day glow paper reminiscent of a bad 80’s movie but having sat back and thought about it, two things came to mind.

The first was the nagging voice in my head as I stared at all the card stock, which sounded an awful lot like my older daughter’s voice, saying “I don’t want a brown bookmark, I want a colourful bookmark!’ She does not share my affinity towards kraft paper.

The second is I am bored. Bored of seeing the same ideas floating in my head and around our home. It’s become pretty obvious to me that my style is evolving. This is a topic I definitely want to get into in a future blog post because I think this is going on in a lot of bloggers heads as well. And in order to shake things up and try new creative things, I thought let’s use something I normally wouldn’t.

And almost nothing is further from kraft paper than neon.

This year for our Candy Free Valentine’s for school we decided to make bookmarks because this is the year that all the kids in my daughter’s grade are really learning to read. And man are they excited for this new world they’ve found. Including watching over my shoulder as I type this entry trying to read every word. This has also led to fun changes in our household such as me no longer being able to spell out code words to my husband that I don’t want her to know or even really protecting all the passwords to the tablets and iPhones. She tries to watch as I type them and suddenly it’s no longer morse code to her.

As well, I wanted something the students could use after Valentine’s Day was over versus the traditional Valentine’s colours and hearts. I realize this is a bit unconventional but I thought hey, let’s go with it. Here’s what you’ll need to make them:

– cardstock (not construction paper, cardstock)
– Mod Podge Matte
– a small paint brush & a medium size flat paint brush
– twine
– scissors
– star punch
– hole punch
– paper cutter / trimmer or an excellent ability to cut straight lines with scissors

First gather up the blinding light that is your neon cardstock paper.

neon cardstock

Then get a single sheet of cardstock.

These are 8.5″ x 11″ sheets.

making bookmarks - northstory (2)

Fold it in half.

making bookmarks - northstory (3)

Put the folded part in the top half of your paper trimmer and adjust to make the cut at 1.5″ in width per bookmark.

making bookmarks - northstory (4)

It will look like this after you cut it.

making bookmarks - northstory (5)

The above will be the exterior of your bookmark. I cut out 20 bookmarks.

Then I cut out an additional 10.

With these additional 10, I cut them at the fold into single strips. These strips will go inside the folded bookmark exterior.

making bookmarks - northstory (6)

Punch a star punch only on one side of the  folded card stock. Technically you can do both sides but somehow this never occurred to me as I was making these.

Save all these stars that you punch out. You’ll need them later.

making bookmarks - northstory (7)

This part I apologize to Amy Anderson and the Mod Podge Rocks crew.

I have never ever, before this project, used Mod Podge – with the exception of their dimensional magic.

Oh yes I just wrote that.

I have no idea what took me this long but I feel like I need to have my imaginary crafting license revoked. Why? Because where has this stuff been all my life??? This is the best thing ever for card making since they invented that awesome machine called the Silhouette that I still don’t have thus forcing me to use an X-acto knife to cut out all my stencils and shapes.

I am officially a Mod Podge convert.

So take your brush and the brush a sheer layer of Mod Podge on the insides of the bookmark.

making bookmarks - northstory (8)

Then put a single strip of card stock inside the bookmark in an opposite colour and fold over and pat down.

making bookmarks - northstory (9)

Cut out 20, 12″ strips of twine and then punch out some more stars.

making bookmarks - northstory (11)

Hole punch the top of your bookmark and thread your twine as such.

making bookmarks - northstory (12)

Put some Modge Podge on one side of a star and press the twine ends in it.

Cover it with a matching colour star.

making bookmarks - northstory (13)

making bookmarks - northstory

And they’re done!

All we’re doing is adding small printed out notes folded over them that read “You’re a STAR in my book, Valentine!” that my daughter will sign.

Unconventional Valentine? Yes.

Untraditional Valentine colours? Yes.

No hearts? Yes.

But anything that gets kids excited to read long after Valentine’s is over is fine by me.

Candy Free Valentines - Bookmarks -

DIY Bookmarks in Neon Cardstock -

DIY Valentine Bookmarks -


  • Reply
    Danielle from Storypiece
    January 27, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    So great! I love all of your unconventional ideas. It’s so sad to give something like a heart decorated valentine (like a bookmark or a fun pencil) and no one wants to use it because Valentine’s Day is over.

    “Clark, that’s the gift that keeps on giving throughout the entire year.” 😉

  • Reply
    January 27, 2014 at 10:31 pm

    Love these! And they remind me of the stars your daughter gave you (the ones that prompted that post that I just loved reading!) And Danielle’s comment is great – we laugh at Clark too 🙂

  • Reply
    Lauren @ The Thinking Closet
    January 27, 2014 at 11:38 pm

    Ahhhhh! A Valentine’s Day book pun – – this so right up my alley. I might have to make Valentines for MY students this year…unless that’s creepy, in which case, nevermind. Oh, and I chuckled about your Mod Podge confession. We all have those things that if the Head of the Crafters Club found out about, we’d all be kicked out. It took me a lonnnnnng time before I hopped on the washi train; and now that I’m on it, I’m never getting off! 😉

  • Reply
    January 28, 2014 at 3:01 am

    So cute, Alex! I love that this is your very first Mod Podge project – so glad you’ve come over to the dark (or maybe not-so-dark side)?

    And I love that you’re giving bookmarks – speaks to this book-lover’s heart!

  • Reply
    January 28, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Ah, very nice! I love an unconventional Valentine’s Day!!! Great job Alex!

  • Reply
    Victoria • Restoring our Victorian
    January 28, 2014 at 10:15 am

    Somewhere in my drafts, there is pretty much this exact statement about Mod Podge. (And how it is shameful to not know what it is.) But I am still confused. Is it glue? Can you even explain it? Is it simply magic?

    PS– thank you for giving me a safe place to confess my ignorance.

  • Reply
    January 28, 2014 at 10:28 am

    Super cute, Alex! The kids are going to love them. Welcome to the world of modge podge!

  • Reply
    [email protected] of Laughter
    January 28, 2014 at 12:12 pm

    I love these Alex! The bright colours with the stars are perfect! Isn’t Modge Podge the best? Have a lovely week! Angie xo

  • Reply
    January 28, 2014 at 5:25 pm

    You always find a way to give a simple craft a very special touch! Love the colored star insert and the twinkle at the end. Really cute, Alex. I’d have to have four or five of them because I never finish a book… they’re markers everywhere. HA HA!

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    January 28, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    These are so cute – I love how cheery and fun they are! I’m all for the more neon the better! And I really need to use Mod Podge more – it’s so great!

  • Reply
    Sabrina @ Pink Little Notebook
    January 30, 2014 at 10:51 am

    What?! First time using Mod Podge?! I can’t believe it! It’s just the greatest stuff ever. I love, love the bookmarks. They are so much fun!

  • Reply
    Thalita @ The Learner Observer
    February 4, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    These are seriously so much fun! I love the colours, and I have a feeling every kid in your daughter’s class will, too!!!

  • Reply
    Kelsey DIY
    July 19, 2018 at 11:30 pm

    Beautiful! Excellent

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