It's easy to add the brads, but don't try to pop them through the paper by themselves. Even thin paper can keep the brad points from popping through and can ruin the "tails" of the brad. Use a paper piercing tool, and awl, or an embroidery needle to start your hole and THEN steer the brad through it.
To get the brad flush against your project, follow this tip. Go ahead and split the "tails," folding them on the back side of the project. Then turn it rightside up. Using the screw of a pair of scissors (the centermost part of the scissors) or a snap setter, firmly push on the top of the brad. This spreads out the "tails" and makes the brad right against the paper.
As for this project, I can't help but think this still needs something. I distressed the striped paper and edged it in gold ink, but it still feels unfinished. I'm just not sure what else to add to it. Maybe I'm just not used to torn and inked edges and this looks too bare compared to that.
Any suggestions you could offer would be most appreciative!