I am really excited to be participating in the Secret Santa gift exchange with Cricut. We were each paired up with a different blogger to get and receive a gift. I sent my package to my Secret DIY Santa today. I really love the way my present for her turned out.

My Secret DIY Santa is Kiki from Kiki & Company. Her blog is wonderful. She shares printables, works of art, recipes and projects. She recently shared the most adorable Santa’s beard countdown. Each night your kiddos get to cut off another piece of Santa’s beard. 


Definitely, head over to her blog and see all the amazing things she creates!

And now, on to the present! I wanted to create something personalized for Kiki, so I decided to create an embellished composition notebook. I don’t think anyone can have too many notebooks. And with the new year getting ready to start, it is the perfect time to start a new one with goals, ideas or whatever you can dream up! And you can personalize the notebook to any theme.

Embellished composition notebook gift made with Cricut Explore

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Supplies needed:

To start with I traced the front and back covers onto patterned light blue and white polka dot paper. Then I cut each piece out.

Use composition book as a guide to trace paper for front cover

I applied Mod Podge to the cover of the notebook and adhered the cut-out polka dot paper to the front.

Apply Mod Podge to front cover

I did the same thing to the back side of the notebook. After it dries, you can trim up any excess paper around the edges using an X-Acto knife or scissors.

Mod Podge paper on front of composition notebook

I designed the rest of the embellishments for the notebook in Cricut Design Space.

Secret Santa composition notebook

I used the logo from Kiki’s website. I started by setting my canvas to notebook and I entered in the dimensions of my composition notebook. This way each piece fits correctly and I can see how the finished project will look.

I created a layered tag with blue textured cardstock, the yellow patterned paper, and Kiki’s sticker logo. I added the logo so it would print then cut onto white sticker paper. I added a yellow patterned paper strip and scalloped light blue textured cardstock strip to cover up the edge where the polka dot paper meets up with the black binding.  I created tabs to go inside the notebook so she can separate her notebook into sections and label them. I also created an envelope to go in the inside cover of the notebook.

The first layer to go was the print then cut layer. I ran white sticker paper through the printer and then the Cricut Explore cut out the shape. I have found that with my particular sticker paper the best setting for cutting is the washi setting.

Use print then cut to create logo label for notebook

Then I cut out the light blue textured cardstock layer and the yellow patterned paper cardstock.

Cut out notebook embellishments with Cricut Explore

I adhered the yellow paper strip and the scalloped paper with Mod Podge to the edge of the notebook where the blue paper meets the black binding.

Apply Mod Podge to all notebook embellisments

I attached all the pieces of the tag together with Mod Podge and placed the logo sticker on the top.

Create logo for notebook

I wrapped a piece of yellow baker’s twine around the front cover and tied it in a bow. I attached the entire logo label with Mod Podge to the cover.


Use baker's twine and a logo to embellish composition notebook

I repeated the process of tracing patterned paper for the inside cover and attaching it with Mod Podge. The paper I chose is a striped and floral patterned paper that matched the rest of the colors I picked out for the notebook.

I used tacky tape to attach the tabs to the notebook. Since the notebook has 100 pages, I divided it into five sections of 20 pages each. When adding tabs I find it easiest to add the top and bottom tabs, then the middle, and lastly the 2nd and 4th tab. This makes it easier to space them out evenly.

Use tacky tape to adhere label tabs to notebooks

I used tacky tape to assemble the envelope and attach it to the inside cover. Use tacky tape to adhere envelope to notebook

I think the notebook turned out really cute!

Embellished composition notebook gift made with Cricut Explore

Attach envelope to inside of notebook

I also made Kiki a pair of yellow earrings. I used the cabochon tutorial I shared earlier. I wanted to display them a little more creatively, so I cut out a Christmas tree shape with the Cricut on textured cardstock. I used the Cricut to write the ‘Merry Christmas’ saying on the card. I punched two small holes on the tree and added the earrings. The look like little ornaments on the tree.

Christmas tree earring holder

To wrap up the earrings I added some crinkle paper and the Christmas tree earring holder to a clear cellophane bag. I tied it up with some yellow baker’s twine.

Gift wrap idea for earrings

I hope Kiki likes her Secret Santa presents and I can’t wait to see what I am getting. I will be sharing all about what I got soon!

What is your favorite Secret Santa gift to give or receive?

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