Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Using patterned papers effectively

Are you sometimes intimidated by certain scrapbook papers? Do you like the color or pattern but you think,"Wow, that's a little "busy"?  No worries! The key to using patterned papers is to use in moderation.

In my early days of scrapbooking, I would use just one sheet of patterned paper as a background, no matter how bright or busy it was; now looking back, I see that my pictures were overwhelmed by the papers. I have learned that by pairing patterned papers with solid cardstock or with a related but smaller/cleaner pattern, I can use the "busiest" papers around, yet still have my photos be the focus.

A great example of a company that has wild patterned paper is Sassafras Lass. I love their paper and embellishments. It makes my heart sing to look at them. However, I know that I have to use their products in a different way so that my layouts are not overwhelmed. Here's one of my favorite layouts that I made using Sassafras products:

By using a black background and by using the papers as borders and accents, I was able to still get the fun, whimsical look, but my photos are still front and center.

Another company that I love is American Crafts. They too have some awesome papers that may need a little tweaking.

If I had used an entire sheet of the stripes, my pictures would have been lost. However, by breaking up the stripes with some solid cardstock, I was able to still get the fun pattern but without all of the clutter.

For more examples of patterned paper layouts, go to my "Gallery" page here on the blog!

So don't be afraid of those wild papers! Just use them in moderation and you will have a layout that you are proud of!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Wonderful Wednesdays #2

Today's "Wonderful Wednesday" site is not a scrapbooking or paper crafting site, but a photography site. The photographer, Irina Werning, has taken old photos of regular people and had the subjects re-enact the photos. The concept is so sweet and beautiful and she has done such a good job with recreating the original poses.

This would be a fantastic idea for a scrapbook page, don't you think? Find a picture of yourself as a kid, and then see if you can recreate it now!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

New look

The blog has a new look! I decided to embrace simplicity and make my blog a little more open. Hope you like it!

(Thanks to Yummy Lolly for the template!)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

"Hoppy Easter" card tutorial

 Since Easter is quickly approaching,  I thought I would share this card and how to make it with y'all! I think that the little 3-D bunny just makes this card adorable. Hope you like it!

(Fair warning -- I am more of an "eyeballer" when it comes to crafting so I don't include many exact measurements in my tutorials.)

Materials needed:
  • 8 1/2"X11" cardstock or pre-made card base (any color)
  • white cardstock at least 5"X4"
  • various colors of cardstock scraps (for sun, bunny, grass, accent piece, and lettering)
  • Bunny stamp
  • Cricut "All Mixed Up" cartridge
  • Pens in various bright spring colors
  • black fine-tipped pen
  • Glitter Glue such as Stickles
  • Adhesives (your choice) as well as 3-D foam "pop dots'
  • fine-tipped scissors
How to:
  1. Start with the card base. If you do not have a pre-made card base, cut a piece of 8 1/2" X 11" cardstock in half (5.5"X8.5"), then fold that in half.
  2. Ink edges of white cardstock if desired. Attach white cardstock piece to front of the card to make the background.
  3. Cut narrow strips of card stock to go across the width of the entire card. Place strips with one on top of the other and adhere. Then place stitching over the seam where the two pieces meet. I know that some people like to sew on their projects, either by sewing machine or hand-stitching, but I am terrible at it so I just draw my stitches with a black pen!
  4. Cut very narrow strip of green paper for the "grass" to the width of the white background. Then with the fine-tipped scissors, cut notches or fringe into the top of the strip to look like grass.
  5. Stamp your bunny image onto a scrap piece of white cardstock. Since my bunny stamp was just the cute little backside, I didn't have to color him in, but if your stamp is a more-detailed bunny you may want to color it in with pens or Copic markers.
  6. Using fine-tipped scissors, cut around the stamped image. Then using the 3-D foam dots, attach the cut-out bunny to the card so that he is standing on the grass.
  7. Cut a circle and small rectangles out of yellow cardstock for the sun. I did mine free-hand so it would have a more whimsical look. Adhere sun and rays to corner of card and then cover with Stickles (I used clear "diamond" Stickles).
  8. Using the "All Mixed Up" cartridge for Cricut (set at 1"), cut out the words "Hoppy Easter". Adhere to card using a fine-tipped glue pen like a Zig 2-way.
  9. Get ready to doodle! Hand-doodled little flowers, the "hopping" dashes, and outline the grass using various gel pens.
  10. Now enjoy your Easter card!
Materials I used:
Card base -- Die Cuts with a View
Patterned paper -- The Paper Studio (from Hobby Lobby)
Cardstock -- unknown
Letters -- Cricut "All Mixed Up" cartridge
Stamp -- Stampabilities (from Hobby Lobby)
Ink -- ColorBox Cat's Eye Fluid Chalk Ink in Blue Lagoon, Autumn Leaves Stampology in Onyx
Pens -- Sakura Glaze and Gelly Roll, Zig Millennium Writer
Adhesives -- Glue Arts Perma-Tac, EKSuccess 3-D Dots, Zig 2-Way Glue
Glitter -- Stickles by Ranger 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Wonderful Wednesdays #1

When I was a kid, a church in my town had a summer program called "Wonderful Wednesdays" where kids would come in each Wednesday and play games and do crafts with other kids. It was at Wonderful Wednesdays that I learned how to make a stamp with a potato (did you ever do that?) and make "stained glass" with tissue paper.

In honor of my early crafting days at Wonderful Wednesdays, I am going to begin my own Wonderful Wednesdays series here on my blog. Each Wednesday, I will feature one or two blogs that demonstrate different paper crafting techniques, have cool layouts, or are just pretty... well, wonderful!.

For the very first Wonderful Wednesday, I am featuring Amarilys's Little Corner. I found her website after she left a comment here on my blog, and I was so impressed with her layouts! Her work features lots of fussy cutting (which I am often just too lazy to do!) and girly elements like flowers and butterflies. She also has lots of great page and card sketches.

So please head on over to her blog and show her some love!

Happy Wednesday to all!

Monday, March 7, 2011

The story behind the layout

Too often in scrapbooking, we document only the good events. But how many of us have only good days? So today over on Better Living Through Scrapbooking, the design team girls (including yours truly) reveal some layouts about the things that didn't go as we had planned.

*One note about this layout. I know that most people see this picture and think, "What could be so terrible about going on a great vacation in the Caribbean? Are you that spoiled?" NO! As you see in my journaling, it was the fact that my plans were changed that led to this layout.

One of the elements that we were challenged to use this time was hidden journaling. The journaling on my layout is behind the picture so you have to lift the picture to see it. Since you can't do that on the site, you can read it here:

I admit it. I am a travel planning junkie. I plan every single little detail on every trip that we take. Where to stay, what to do, even where to eat are all things that figure out months in advance, and our cruise was no different. I had our entire day in Cozumel all taken care of. We had never been there before so I was kind of excited about it. I was even going to try helmet diving (a big deal for someone who is afraid of water)!

Then came the swine flu.

It hit Mexico first just a couple of weeks before our cruise. This was an illness of epic proportions and Cozumel was soon a hot-bed of disease. Of course, all of the cruise lines stopped going to Mexico and we were told (just days before the cruise) that we would be going to Nassau, Bahamas instead. All that planning down the toilet. All that work planning our trip was just wasted and I was completely thrown for a loop. Messing up my travel plans is guaranteed to totally ruin my day. I didn't want to go to the Bahamas. I had heard from many people that it wasn't that great. Boy, were they right. We were not impressed and I was still bitter about having my plans foiled. Oh well, at least we can say "Been there, done that". Maybe on our next cruise, it won't be during a flu epidemic!

So if you haven't seen the layouts from the other design team girls, go check them out. Maybe it will inspire you to scrap a not-so-perfect event!

Friday, March 4, 2011

I'm going international!

I've known about this for a few weeks now, but it is now official so I can share with you:

I'm going international!!!

I am proud to announce that I will be the guest contributor on not one, but two scrapbooking websites based in other countries. In April, I will be featured at ScrapGreece (a Greek website) and Scrapping Shoebox (out of Australia). I will be sharing some brand-new layouts and tutorials on both sites.

I am pretty excited about this opportunity because it opens up my work to a much bigger audience. It will also be fun to see how my tutorials translate into Greek! And don't worry if you can't read Greek; the ScrapGreece site has a handy translator function!

Now this news has nothing to do with the post from yesterday. I never heard anything so I will just sigh and move forward. As you can see, I have other opportunities to keep me busy!

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I need a serious dose of patience!

If you all remember, my "one little word" for 2011 is BRAVE. I decided that this was the year to go big or go home. So in that vein, I have been actively pursuing my dream of being on a design team. I've been sending out submissions like a crazy woman.

But do you know what the worst part is? The waiting. Waiting for the email or call that you had what someone was looking for. Waiting to hear if your art is deemed "worthy". Waiting to see if this is the day that you are one step closer to your dream.

As those who know me can attest, I pretty much stink at waiting. Patience is definitely not my gift. I try every day to cultivate it, but most of the time, I fail miserably (I could never be a vulture, just waiting around till something dies! I'd have to go kill it myself!). I have to constantly remind myself that my life is not subject to my time line; it works on God's time line.

So today, I wait for an announcement that is supposed to come and try to be patient. If it is meant to be, it will happen. If not, then I move on and try again...but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

JOURNALING PROMPT: Are you a patient person? If so, how did you become that way? If not, do you want to change?
Images by Freepik