Thursday, July 18, 2013

Happy Birthday!

I almost never make cards.  But once in a while, there is an occasion that calls for something special.   My husband's birthday is one of those times.  Of course, I waited til the last minute, but I made this last night.

I started with a sketch from My Scraps and More.  Then I went for my (current) favorite birthday line - Party Day by Crate Paper.  The variety of embellishments made making the card a piece of cake, especially when I added a frame from The Pier.

Thanks for looking.  Hope you had a great day!

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Christmas In July Blog Hop (with a giveaway)

Welcome to the Christmas in July Blog Hop, inspiring you to get out your Christmas stash and use it before all the new collections are introduced this month. Join the fun and create something too, use the hastag #scrapbookchristmas in twitter, facebook or instagram.

When the planning for this blog hop started, I was really excited about the chance to participate.  I love Christmas and have tons of Christmas stash.  But as the date got closer, I wasn't feeling very inspired.  I had lots of stuff, but it was the bits and pieces left from prior year projects.  Then I saw a challenge at My Scraps and More that asked you to create a layout that used Christmas papers and a Christmas phrase to create a layout about a non-holiday topic.  Given the size of my stash, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to use up some of my stash.  I made a layout about a visit to Slate Run Farm titled "Away In The Manger."

I used papers from Studio Calico's Winter Wonderland, Crate Paper's Sleigh Ride, and Basic Grey's Figgy Pudding (an old one right?) and Jovial.  You were allowed to use any embellishments and these came from My Mind's Eye, Jillibean Soup and Simple Stories.  And that great Fancy Pants chalk tape was perfect for adding a quick note about where we were.

And that made me think - could I do a Christmas layout without any Christmas paper.  So I pulled out my Valley High goodies (the July kit at Studio Calico) and went to work.  The colors and patterns in the kits turned out to work perfectly for a Christmas layout.  Here's what I ended up with.

I was scrapping with my friend Gloria, and she looked at the annual picture of our kids by the Christmas tree and immediately suggested this title.  And, I have to admit that it suits the expression on the boys' faces.


I still have lots of bits and pieces left, so I thought I'd share them.  Just make sure you are a follower and leave a comment.  I'll leave the drawing until midnight on Sunday, July 21.  Rather than post a picture of the goodies, I thought I'd leave it as a surprise for the winner (kind of like a Christmas present.)

I'm the last stop today.  If you started in the middle you can hop on over to see Ruth and get started at the beginning.  And just in case you got lost at any point, here is the list all the blogs.

Julie -

Thanks for stopping by - hope your Monday is just marvelous!
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Sunday, July 7, 2013

Black and White and Lots of Color

Lately I've been loving bright colors - especially the combination of bright colors and black and white photos. So when I was digging through my pile of photos and came across a black and white 5x7 of my children on Easter morning (a few years ago), I got right to work.  Here's what I pulled together.

I mixed papers and embellishments from lots of different manufacturer's and lines for this - most from my scrap pile.  The base and the red heart journaling card are from the new Simple Stories line, I {Heart} Summer.  The yellow paper is from the MME Collectable line and the white paper is from the MME Indie Chic line. The dark blue paper is from the Dear Lizzy Lucky Charm line, the floral mini bag is from one of the Websters Pages Allison Kreft lines. The red floral paper is from the BG Piccadilly collection and the ledger border strip is from the new BG Capture line.  And the big yellow die cut is from an Amy Tangerine collection.

I also incorporated some ink splatters, a technique that I'm not very comfortable with.  I mixed white and the neon Mister Hueys.   Then I added some tiny enamel dots to help them pop.

This Dear Lizzy die cut (I think from 5th and Frolic) as a perfect shape and dimension.  But it wasn't really bright enough to mix with the rest of the elements on the page.  I added more enamel dots to brighten it up.  Then I combined it with an Amy Tangerine diecut and a fabric heart from the American Craft products you can find at Target.

This was also a great layout to incorporate trims. (I have jars of trims and rarely use them any more, so when I came across a challenge at My Scraps and More to use at least three on a layout, I knew I wanted to give it a try.)  I used a piece of orange stripe twill ribbon as a border strip, tied a piece of yellow ribbon around the white patterned paper and added some aqua crocheted trim to the heart journaling card.  It didn't really make a dent in my stash but it was a good reminder to look at all those trims when a layout needs a little something.

Have  a super Sunday!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Photo Effects and the Sunday Sketch

I've been having lots of fun playing with the different effects you can apply to photos lately.  And once in a while, I really love the way a picture looks when it prints.  This picture of Nicholas and my nephew Tyler is one of those pictures.

Nicholas and Tyler have always had a special relationship and this picture from Tyler's birthday party captured the joy they find in spending time together.  And when I applied the special effect, I loved the way Tyler's red shirt popped in the photo.

My Roundabout kits were sitting on my desk and I went there first for papers.  But I had to dig into my stash for the base (from MME Miss Caroline) and the red polka dot (Basic Grey Hipster).  I started with this week's Sunday Sketch (I chose the layout sketch) , but the final interpretation is pretty loose.  I can see the connections, but I'm not sure anyone else can.

I did steal the idea of cutting up mini alphas (from a layout in the gallery that I couldn't find - sorry.)  I took my star punch to some Fancy Pants Alphas.  I had lots of fun adding other bits and pieces, like the end of the vintage tag, the basic grey stars, some enamel dots and the airmail twine to finish it off.

Have a great Saturday!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Guest Designer at Life Paper Scrapbook

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I was lucky enough to be given the chance to be a guest designer at Life Paper Scrapbook for the new sketch challenge.  The sketch was really fun and different.  I pulled out my June kits from Studio Calico and got to work.

I decided to cut the arrow shapes from the bold chevron paper from Crate Paper and use a black background to make them pop.  They looked great but were huge.  To compensate for the size of the arrows, I decided to use only one photo with some layering in the bottom corner of the layout  I kept the title at the top of the layout. And when I was finished, my layout didn't look much like the sketch.  But it was a fun Christmas layout - and without any Christmas themed product.  What do you think?

I knew I wanted the title block to be really fun and balance the photo block at the bottom of the page.  So after I attached the letters, I grabbed a handful of the "candi" from the card add-on kit and dropped it on the page.  Then I stuck it down where it fell.  I love the random confetti feel.

I had a great time playing with the sketch and really appreciate the opportunity.  Enjoy your Friday.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Still Working on "This Is Me" with Roundabout

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I know the "This is Me" class was in May.  But I didn't get much done that month and I'm trying to do at least a couple pages every month.  I did two pages using Roundabout (and some Planetarium scraps) for my "Needs Work" section.  These are some of the hardest pages for me - they are focusing on things I know I need to work on.

The first one is "Marriage Is A Journey."  My husband and I have been married almost 23 years.  And we are at a transition point.  We started as friends, fell in love, and got married.  Now the second of our three children is moving out and we have more time to be a couple again.  But like many couples, our kids activities took up most of our time over the last 15 to 20 years.  So we have to learn to be a couple again.  (We'll get there, but definitely something I'm working on.)

My favorite part of this layout (from a creative point of view) is the layered project life card and Heidi Swapp transparent tab.  Remember that I am using a Snap album but with a landscape orientation.  The PL card/tab stick out the side of the page protector and album.  And I love that the words work together to say "you + me together."

The second layout I did is about my stash building habits.  When I am stressed, I like to shop.  It used to be for clothes and shoes, but in the last year it has been for scrap supplies.  Let's just say my scrap room is very well stocked after the last year (and after a giant purge.)  And I really want/need to learn to destress by using my stash, not adding to it.

Someday I'll finish this project (probably just in time to start an album about the new, hopefully improved me.)  In the meantime, I'll keep plugging along, making a few pages here and there.

Thanks for taking the time to visit.  Have a wonderful Wednesday! 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Finding Me, Take Two

I've read a lot lately about finding your own scrappy style.  And I've been trying to work on that.  So last night I went through the stack of recent layouts on my desk.  And at the end of the night, after some thinking, this is what I knew about my style.

  • I like color.  I use color on my layouts and rarely work just in neutrals.  
  • I'm often attracted to deeper colors for my layout bases.  And if I choose a neutral base, it generally has some subtle pattern.
  • I like to mix a variety of papers and embellishments.  
  • I like clean lines and/or a fair amount of white space.
Most of my recent layouts clearly fell within these boundaries and they were some of my all time favorites.  But one layout was different - there were parts I really liked - the color choices, the mix of patterns, the title placement and the diagonal photo placement - but it was overdone.  There were no clean lines and no white space.

So I decided to take it apart and do it again, thinking about the things I knew I liked to incorporate in my layout.  I was careful and tried to remove each element so that it could be reused.  I spread them all over my desk.

I needed a new base for my layout because I had journaled directly on the base previously.  So I picked a base and went to work. The grey patterned paper was pretty damaged so I picked a similar sheet.  And then I started to incorporate the elements from the prior layout.  Here is what I ended up with.

I kept my favorite elements - the colors, the title placement and the diagonal picture placement.  I edited my selections and kept clean lines.  I also added a few elements that weren't in the original layout - the wood circles, cork circle, cork arrow and enamel dots.  But I kept my favorite quote and most of my favorite elements.  And I like this much better.  I guess finding me at 50 is a work in process.  

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you have a great day! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Recipe Challenge and Roundabout

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Last week the weekly challenge at Studio Calico was a recipe challenge.  Here are the "ingredients."

at least two tags

Now it just so happens that vellum, frames and stars are some of my favorite things right now.  So I was all over this challenge.  I started with a piece of colored cardstock from the Roundabout kits and came up with this.

The bright cardstock base really makes the other elements of the layout pop.  And I used my Texture Boutique to create a piece of vellum with a custom look

 I used Mustard Colorshine to make a white tag yellow.  The ink didn't want to adhere to the tag, so I used a tissue to wipe the ink across the tag, creating a fun look.  And those frames from Crate Paper are still some of my favorite embellishments.

That geotag from Freckled Fawn is great and I love the chipboard and glittered stars from Studio Calico. 

Thanks for stopping by - Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Sunday Sketch, Roundabout and Favorite Embellishments (and BlogLovin)

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Sunday Sketch

Its July and I still have tons of product left from my June kits.  So this weekend, I really tried to use that product.  And since last week's Sunday Sketch was a grid pattern layout, it was a great opportunity to mix lots of bits and pieces.

Here's my finished layout.  I stuck pretty closely to the sketch for this one.

The papers are all from the Roundabout kits, but I'm just not a good kit scrapbooker.  I couldn't help myself, so I dug into my stash for some of my favorite embellishments.

 If you stop here often, you know that I've long been addicted to washi tape.  Those glittery stars that Studio Calico put out with Atlantic are seriously addictive.  And I love the little puffy stickers made by Skipping5.

Chalkboard finish products and cork are some of my favorite trends right now.  I love the cork circles printed in white and this tag is from the Martha Stewart office supply line sold at Staples.

This layout uses other favorites too - the stitched vellum embellishments Amy Tangerine does are long standing favorites and I love the word stickers Jillibean Soup put out this year.  Buttons are a staple and a great way to add shape and texture.  And arrows are one of my all time favorites.

Thanks for checking out my layout.  Have a great Monday.