I have a number of weaknesses, among them, this face....
...and patriotic scrapbook supplies. I LOVE the supplies that come out each year with the red, white and blue plus stars, stripes, and the many, many variations.
The truth is that these pictures were taken on the Fourth of July, but they aren't really about that...They are about the cute, sunny, funny disposition of my older boy. He's a performer, a ham...always looking for his way to be the center of my attention.
I love his little face - and the funny faces he makes with it!
I’m not much of a fan for the whole matching outfit thing.
Although I will buy matching pjs or similar outfits (red
shirts, red / white / blue plaid shorts) for my boys for events or pictures
They have vastly different personalities and are quite vocal, so they often
protest when I try to match them up.
The sweatshirt in these pictures was originally found for
one boy and, of course thinking of pictures, I got the same shirt for the
Little did I know that the pictures would make that shirt
look SO BRIGHT.
For scrapping, I had two basic choices…make it black and
white or figure out a color scheme that would compliment the picture.
I chose the latter and decided to use muted versions of the
colors already in the shirt. I was looking for something very masculine and
un-fussy in order to keep competition with that photo to a minimum and opted
for the zig-zag line, compasses, and my favorite little enamel pearls…
So its not an overwhelming layout…but it DOES give the
picture center stage – precisely what I was after.
What do you do with your difficult photos? How do you deal
with color challenges? I know I have some photographer friends – what would you
do with these shirts if a mother (like me) insisted that the kids wear them for
Today, I'm sharing a little project I did about my tiny one...when he was still tiny.
My little likes sweet and fruity thing...I think orange juice must be his favorite thing EVER. When he was little I would take one look at those huge brown eyes and he could have nearly anything he wanted! HAHA!
On this day, I was having a smoothie for breakfast and, of course, he wanted a sip.
Once I gave him the drink, tho, I couldn't get it back!!! That's my boy!
I am quite in love with polaroid frames and have been since they made their first "comeback." I love that retro stuff...
So, I recreated some retro frames, added twine a bit of fussy cutting and my favorite Fancy Pants Letters. All of this on a standard black with white polkas and with some arrow borders...
I intended to post about my Saturday cropping experience earlier this week, but alas, the hours in the day didn't last.
But, better late than never, right?
When I first started paper crafting, I steered clear of events and crops because I was never sure what to expect. I sort of searched around the net for posts about what the events are like, but pictures, information and reviews can be kind of scarce about crops. These days information about preparing for a crop and what to take to class is easier to come by. However, I never knew what to pack, how to plan, or what sort of other paper crafters I would meet at any given event.
Believe it or not, one of my first events was a CKU...which was awesome because at the time CKU attendees had their own Yahoo groups, arranged chats, delivered secret info on registrations, etc. Through that CKU, I made friends that have remained friends to this very day (and even found a long-lost college friend!) and also got exposed to the world of the LSS crop, home crop, charity crop and a number of other kinds of events.
I vowed that if I attended paper crafting events, I would start posting reviews so other's would have some more information to work with when trying to decide whether or not to spend our hard-earned money to attend a crop.
A couple of friends and I attended the Charlotte version of an Embellish IT! Play All Day event on Saturday. This is an event that runs on a Saturday from 9 am to 9 pm. One little aside, the event "ends" at 9 pm, but the croppers can still remain in the room until midnight.
We arrived at 8:30 and, as usual, were greeted warmly by Shelby and Steve. These two were MADE to do group events. They are truly the nicest people.
Here we are - fairly early in the day:
Now, this event is literally a day of playing for paper crafters. In our particular space, we had 4 feet of dedicated space on straight tables. There are outlets for devices and lights if you choose. The chairs, as you would expect, are the standard padded hotel ballroom chairs. As is always the case in attending events in hotel ballrooms, wear comfortable clothes and bring a sweater or sweatshirt. The temperature can change dramatically, so a sweater is a must.
This is the room we were in...great space and lots of room for everyone...good for conversation...
My space (yes that is my travelling washi collection). Its hard to tell, but I had more than enough space to do my projects:
One of the things that Shelby does for these events is teach two classes during the event. The kits this year were two double page layouts and then eight cards.
I happen to break Shelby's page kits apart and use them to create 4 one-page layouts. But she gives an amazing amount of product and the layout designs are very usable for customizing, so the kits/classes are a great addition to the crop time.
She brings a wide selection of page kits, mini-book kits, collection packs and cardstock packs for purchase if you choose.(I always shop! ALWAYS!) The selection is good and always current or brand new product.
Cropping is something we do once per month, but the events where we basically get to spend all day chatting, having chocolate, creating projects and just hanging out are my favorites. If you have a chance to attend one of these as a card maker or scrapbooker, you should...I highly recommend them.
Very, very, very little secret that I love scrapbook kits.
Kits offer a group of supplies and embellishments in one place that eliminates the
analysis paralysis I can get when faced with the hundreds of choices I have in
my studio for papers and other supplies.
I buy kits individually and subscribe to them for months at
a time upon occasion.
I even now design for a very special kit club that
encourages me to get ME in my pages. Check out the side bar for that!)
And, of course, I make my own. I find that grabbing ONE bag
of supplies with my pictures really helps me to get pages done and get my
stories on paper.
Where does one start to put together their own kit?
There are probably
1000 ways to assemble a kit that works for you.
I happen to follow the same process over and over…and
honestly, it would work for making any craft kit with just a few tweaks.
The most important thing in creating your own kits is to
keep your personal style in mind.
Let me do a little disclaimer…I’ve made “experimental” kits
for certain events or projects. I do this from time to time to encourage me to
play with my newest things or to try new techniques. BUT for my normal
scrapbooking and/or crop kits, I stick to my normal style:
I scrap single page layouts that are generally photo heavy.
I love using patterned paper and largely neutral cardstock.
I’m a flat embellishment girl
I love washi, ribbon and letters.
Keeping in mind my style, this is my general process:
Step One: Gather Patterned paper and cardstocks.
I try to
focus on a three color scheme, with the same intensity and then use neutrals to
flesh out the kit. Sometimes I begin this process with a single paper that has inspired
me and sometimes its a color scheme. In this case, it started with that
colorful alpha numeric paper in the bottom right corner.
The colors that jump out at me are the blue, red and yellow,
plus neutrals of black, kraft and off-white. This is actually an older set of
pictures, so you will notice a lot of the older papers in the mix.
You will notice I have two red, two blue, two yellow, two
black…essentially more than one option of a color to work with when I get
creating with the kit.
Step Two: Flat embellishments and stickers.
include journal cards, stickers, borders, die cuts…pretty much anything that is
flat. I happen to LOVE letter stickers and thickers, so my kits have a lot of
Again, there is a mix of my key colors – blue, yellow and
red – plus neutrals as well as a variety of things to work with.
Step Three: Dimensional embellishments.
I have a TON of
dimensional embellishments, but I am not a fan of bulky pages. SO, these are
usually used sparingly. In some kits, I add ton of them, and in some I do not. In this
case, I pulled some tags, older chip board shapes, a variety of buttons and
some washi tape.
The final step is to put it all together into a container of
some sort…I happen to use 2 gallon zip lock bags for storage because they don’t
add any EXTRA bulk and they are inexpensive to replace when they wear out.
If you are interested in creating your own kits and/or
getting some inspiration, here are some additional (and in some cases very
And if you want to create a kit a month and then scrapbook
with it immediately (including inspiration for making your own papers, embellishments
and other fun challenges!)– check out the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog.
I took a wonderful mini-course called "Style is Leverage" through Debbie Hodge's Masterful Scrapbooking Design and was able to organize myself in a way that works for my style.
I'm going to be going to a crop this weekend so, of course, I used some of the things I learned plus my usual process to get myself ready...
This is not normally a process I do all at once, but I can do things in sections in 15 minute spurts or while I'm watching a movie or something. I tend to do THIS process whether or not I have a crop to go to, because it makes it easy for me to pick up a group of pictures and get a layout done in the very sporadic blocks of free time I tend to have available.
First thing? Pictures!!!
When I get my pictures (I tend to order them every 30 to 60 days), I sort them into groups by event or idea for pages:
Once I've got pictures broken down by event or page idea, I go in search of sketches. I've got a number of sources for sketches. Some I have downloaded from layouts I love. Some I draw. Some I tear out of magazines. Some I have on my Sketches I Love Pinterest Board (you can see my board HERE).
How ever I come up with the sketch, I draw a copy of it onto some graph paper (or use a print out). Once I've got an idea of my page design and the pictures, I go to work on journaling. To journal, I pull out my pictures, open a new document in Word, and create a text box that is sized to the journal space available for my design and I type away.
After I get a few pages of journaling spots done, I print them out and cut them up.
I stack the journaling, sketch drawing and pictures (pictures in front), and put them all into plastic baggies:
As I go, I place these in a bin in my studio and just work from them through my layouts. Because I love sketches and can journal my story straight from the pictures, I've got everything necessary for the story right there.
On Friday, I'll talk through the other preparation step I do to make my process easy - kitting supplies!!!
It strikes me that my "chronological" layouts are really very different than my "art" layouts. I've been documenting some old pictures and getting through the stories of our every day lives lately.
Sometimes my scrapbooking focus is just to get layouts done and in books, to tell the stories that make our life OURS.
I really want to get some of these older pictures into books
so that the boys can look at them.
These photos about Jayden’s fascination with the sandbox at
his Grandma’s. at the time, he loved being in the sand and having fun with the
shovels and molds.
Again, I broke out some older supplies to get this done.
This was actually created from one of my many self-made kits. The paper and
blue canvas letters are so old I can’t even remember where they came from! The clear stars are some old Heidi Swapp I
had in my stash. The metallic stars are Doodlebug. The layout is updated to
look fresh and new with a Polaroid frame from Recollections and stickers from
This, then, is the state of the union: free and restless, growing and full of hope. So it was in the beginning. So it shall always be, while God is willing, and we are strong enough to keep the faith. ~Lyndon B. Johnson
This group of people is very very special to me for one really awesome reason - they encourage me to dig deep into my own heart and mind and include the journey I take as a person in my scrapbooks and journals.
I've long been a fan of using words and expressing myself in a way that feels authentic and open. Once upon a time, I wrote songs...and now I can use these wonderful kits and SFTIO's monthly theme to get to the bottom of my thoughts, dreams, meditations and general mental wandering.
The beautiful kits always challenge me creatively to try new things and explore more artistically as well..
This is the kit for July:
Isn't it gorgeous!?!?!?
I love the aqua and gold...with that navy cardstock! Navy is my new favorite color...I have often overlooked it.
It also has amazing little binoculars, some cameras, that awesome camera stencil and lots of little vellum bits...My favorite part is that vellum sky paper in the top right...its so beautiful! I almost hated to cut into it!!!
The emotion this month is PERSPECTIVE...
World English Dictionary defines PERSPECTIVE this way:
1.a way of regarding situations, facts, etc, and judging their relative importance
2.the proper or accurate point of view or the ability to see it; objectivity: try to get some perspective on your troubles
3.the theory or art of suggesting three dimensions on a two-dimensional surface, in order to recreate the appearance and spatial relationships that objects or a scene in recession present to the eye
4.the appearance of objects, buildings, etc, relative to each other, as determined by their distance from the viewer, or the effects of this distance on their appearance
5.a view over some distance in space or time; vista; prospect
6.a picture showing perspective
I think for me, the most compelling definition is number 5: a view over some distance in space or time...though I tried to explore more than just that one.
I'll be posting some layouts I've done from this kit later on this week...
Until then, consider your own PERSPECTIVE...how does it relate to those around you? Do you think about the perspective of others when in relationships, business transactions, or just random encounters? (I do...I find myself wondering about where people are coming from all the time!). What about perspective in your living spaces? In the work you do?