Sunday, October 19, 2014

I spent the month throwing away some scrapbook layouts

I am still here! I haven't done much scrapbooking this month, just doing some scrapbooking organization. Let me explain:

I have been meaning to remove the Christmas pages from the family albums and put them in their own books that will be stored away once Christmas is over. I started taking the pages out, then started removing the pages of my husband too--not for any nefarious purpose, just to give him his own album.

Once I was done, I started moving the pages together so that there were no blank spots. This freed up a couple albums, which became my husband's. (I still have to find nice albums for the Christmas pages.) As I moved pages, I found some that I hated. Not for the design, though that did happen occasionally. No, I hated pages for a few reasons:
  1. I tried a technique that was HOT at the time that just looked like junk when I tried it.
  2. I had created the page just to use up supplies, mostly with kit remnants.
  3. I had created the page, not because I had a story, but to use up photos left over from other layouts.
Some pages I just threw out. Some, though, had some photos I liked, so I redid the pages. Here are a few of them:

This photo came from a page that used a technique I didn't care for. I think I also used up a kit to make it too. I kept the design simple and subdued and picked weathered products to fit the Instagram filter I used.

And here was another one I did a technique I hated. I used wintery colors to fit the time period and picked products that seemed a little vintage-y to go with the whole castle motif.

Finally comes a page I made with random photos I loved from various pages, pages that I hated. Many of these were table of contents pages I no longer needed; some were from pages without stories (here the boys are eating watermelons! Or eating popsicles!) I kept the photos and put them on a page and reflected on why I loved them. If you can't read the stickers that I stitched down as journaling, here's what it says: "When I look back at these photos, I love to see how happy we are and what good times we spent together." If you can read it, you'll notice I forgot to put one of those words on the page. Oh well. :-)

So you know, Paperclipping Roundtable recently talked about this issue, throwing away or redo-ing pages. Go listen to the podcast to hear what they had to say about the issue.

I have one more page that I redid, one with photos I loved but a technique I hated. I used products I had just gotten for a guest design team spot I'll be on in November. I'll share that one next month!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

The power of a grid

We went to the Renaissance Fair this year (we trade off between that and the State Fair every year), and of course, I ended up with a ton of photos. I tend not to design my pages before I print photos, but I have two habits I followed here:
  1. I print my favorite shot bigger
  2. I print all other photos the same, smaller size
I don't print my own photos--I have a crappy printer, and I don't like how much ink printing photos uses--so I order from a good, local printer and pick them up.

After I printed the photos, this was the page I made with them:

I didn't have two of the same paper, so I used two different sheets of patterned paper.  I also had a LOT of smaller photos, but too many to put in a line--a favorite technique of mine--so I decided to use a grid. Putting one big photo on one side of the page and making the other page a grid is a nice way to fit lots of photos, in this case 10. Here's some details:

I left two squares in the grid blank to add embellishments and journaling, something I like to do to break up the grid a bit.

Thank you for checking out my page! I hope it gives you ideas for including many photos in a two-page layout, as well as highlighting a favorite photo in the same layout.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

October reveal for Scrapbook Circle

I've spent the last couple weeks playing with this colorful Scrapbook Circle kit, On This Day, so I want to share the pages I made with them. Here they are:

This first I used mostly the add-on Right Now; I cut some of the 6x6 pad into 2x2 squares and created a quilt, which reminded me of my grandmother.

I like making two-page layouts, so I enjoyed using all these 4x3 photos of our trip to the Sculpture Gardens for this page. Too many fun photos to pick a focal point, so I made them all the same size. Lots of fun with colors and trim from Right Now and Good Times.

Here I had some fun with a page about my dog Lola. Mostly the main kit, plus some goodies from Good Times and Right Now.

Finally, a page about my boys and their local lake. I picked the cork paper from the main to signify the beach, plus the paper and embellishments to signify the happiness of summer.

This is what I love about the kit: it has the traditional warm hues for autumn, but it also has brightness enough for summer and spring. And if you want to use it for winter? It has enough color to bring you out of the doldrums. Visit Scrapbook Circle to check out the kit, the add-ons, and the digital add-ons to bring some color to your pages.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Layering embellishments and paper

October is incredibly right around the corner, so I thought I'd share my pages for Simple Scrapper that will be in their Spark magazine and give some ideas of how I go about layering embellishments:

This first page I did using the September kit from Scrapbook Circle and a story starter and sketch from Simple Scrapper. The idea of the page was serendipitous: I'm getting ready to print pictures to (finally!) scrap our family vacation to Disneyworld. My son loved Thunder Mountain Railroad so much, he had asked to have his picture taken with it in the background. (Scrapbookers' kids ask things like that, I think.) The photo reminded me of one of me taken when I was a kid for the very same reason. And so I put them together on the page.

Putting two 4x6 photos on a page can be kind of boring, so I layered a LOT to make it more interesting. Here's some details:

When I layer, I start with something flat--in this case, tags and die cuts and sayings cut from patterned paper--and overlap them. I then add something dimensional--a sticker on dimensional adhesive and some epoxy and puffy stickers--and do something with texture--in this case, I stitched the label sticker down and added the gold glitter dots.

I've started using 6x6 pads more; they are the perfect way to layer bits of patterned paper without cutting apart a whole piece of paper. Here I trimmed some tag paper out of the pad and stitched it down.

The next page also uses a sketch from Simple Scrapper and this time a kit from Studio Calico:

Again, I had two photos, this time 3x3. Again I set them on top of layers of patterned paper, but this time I added some Project Life cards to journal on. Here's some details:

I focused most of my embellishing on dimension and texture, allowing the background paper and PL cards to be the flat elements of my embellishing. The dimension came from the wood veneer and the label stickers on dimensional adhesive, and the texture came mostly from stitching and gems.

The rub-on words as a part of the border was a last minute addition. I like embellishing with words, in case you couldn't tell.

Thank you for checking out my work with Simple Scrapper! I hope I gave you some ideas for how to put together your embellishments into interesting layers to add some interesting depth to a two-photo page.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Matchbook mini-album

Every year my family takes a photo by the Easter decorations at my church. Recently I printed them in 5x7 photos, determined to put them in a mini-album. Most mini-albums do not fit that size, though, so I had to make my own. Inspired by a sticker album from Studio Calico fitted like a matchbook, I made my own matchbook album. Here it it:

I didn't have enough paper to completely fold over the 5x7 photos--no 12x12 mathematically can--so I trimmed another piece of the same paper and flipped it over to see the B side. I used super sticky adhesive tape then covered the break with a strip of patterned paper.


I backed each photo with patterned paper then added a small cluster of embellishments to the front of each photo to draw attention to the year.

Thanks for checking out my mini album! I'll be back later this week sharing pages I made for Simple Scrapper and Scrapbook Circle for October.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Scrappy Blog Tour

The wonderful and talented Kay Rogers tagged me to participate in this scrappy blog hop--thank you, Kay! I'm a big fan of her work and am honored by her recognition.

What am I working on right now? 

Last weekend I was lucky to go on a scrapbooking weekend outside of town with some girlfriends. I brought back about 12 layouts and one mini album, completed or almost completed. I'm still finishing up some of those pages. Here's my favorite from the weekend:

Every summer I put this album together right away we get back from vacation.  I delayed this year, but I finally put it together. This was pretty quick to make; I'd printed my favorite photos of each of us from the trip to Itasca, then I brought a Crate Paper mini album from their latest travel line (The Open Road?). I added some Project Life cards I'd picked up from Joann's that deal with camping; since the patterns on the cards come from Pebbles' Lakeside line, I added some leftover products from that too. Finally, I added some buttons. Just because every project could use a button. Here's the inner pages:

How long does it take me to create a project? 

I'm pretty quick--maybe an hour? But stretch that out over a week, and that's usually my process. I start a page and do a little on it every day until it's done.

For more involved projects, I spend a couple hours.

What are my favorite things to create with at the moment? 

I have always loved stickers--I particularly love to remove the stickiness and then adhere them with dimensional adhesive. I also love buttons. Lately, I've enjoyed using Project Life cards and using my Cameo to cut titles (not so often to add cut embellishments, but I'm working on it!).

How does my writing/creating process work? 

Usually, I go through my photo files on the computer to download and edit once a month. That's when I print photos that I'll work with for the next month or so. If I'm designing for Scrapbook Circle, I'll take out the kit to use; if I'm designing for Simple Scrapper or Write Click Scrapbook, I'll use the sketch or prompt to inspire my product choice. In short, I'm photo driven for the most part, and I like to use kits and supplement with stash.

Occasionally, I start with product. In this next page, I had some Project Life cards that dealt with reading, which inspired me to scrap the list of notable books I'd posted on Facebook:

How do I become inspired and stay inspired? 

I find it helpful to record my family stories on Facebook, either with words or pictures or both. They serve as placemarkers for me so that I can remember them and go back and scrap them later. I love to create, so once my kids are in bed, I like to pull out my supplies and create a little before I go to bed. Surfing through online galleries and Pinterest also inspires me, though I don't scraplift; instead, I think looking through terrific pages inspires me to create.

What is my signature style? 

I'm pretty linear. I also love color. I love clustering embellishments, and I love stitching. I think my pages tends to have some sort of whimsy or playful element to them, although sometimes it might just be in the presence of a button. Here's a page that's pretty typical of my style: 

Thank you for visiting my pages on this scrappy tour! Now I tag three scrapbookers who have inspired me: Jennifer Haggerty, Donna Jannuzzi, and Cristina C. Scrap!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Using up scrapbooking products

Hello! School has started again here in Minnesota. It was busy here as I started teaching again and my boys started their last week of elementary school. Now that things are getting back into a rhythm, I thought I'd share some pages circulating around an idea I had: using up products you have on hand.

I got a kit a while back that I didn't really care for. I'd bought it, though, so I had to use it. I sometimes feel the same way about older products that I one loved but now...not so much. Here's a few ideas I had for making pages I like with products I don't like as much.

1. Use B sides of paper. They are less dramatic than the main side and are more versatile.

2. Use smaller bits of paper. If the paper has a dramatic pattern, cut it apart and use it in smaller doses.

3. Supplement with stash. Use bits of stash to liven up the products you're not as keen on. Here I supplemented with some Amy Tangerine die cuts, a flair, and a Crate transparency frame.

4. Use the dramatic patterns in different ways. I can explain this hint best with the following page. The pencil paper speaks of school, but I used it for music lessons, certainly a type of school. In addition, once I put the layout together, I realized the space in between the pencils would make a great spot for journaling. (Ignore the place in the journaling where I whited out a spelling error and forgot to correct it. Grr. Arggh.)

5. Look for similar products to use together. I did this with this next page. I cut down the big geometric paper in a circle, then noticed that the colors in it matched the colors on a project life card and some transparent circle stickers. And so the page came together.

Thank you for checking out my pages! So tell me: how do you use up products that you are not as excited about using?