Saturday, February 13, 2016

Valentines Day Stash Busting

I don't make cards very often - but once in a while I really get in the mood.  Last Sunday I made this Valentine for a Super Bowl challenge at Paper Issues.  (Well to be honest, I made a Valentine, got up the next day, didn't like it and added some more bits and pieces - this is the end result).  The ombre fabric tag from Pinkfresh Happy Things was perfect and added lots of texture.  And lets be honest - the gold glitter thickers from Maggie Holmes that said "be true" are beautiful but were probably never going to end up on a layout.  So a Valentine was the perfect solution.

When I was done, I'd been bitten by the bug - so most of my crafty time this week was spent digging through scraps and embellishments for bits to use to make Valentines.  The papers all came from my "small scrap basket."  I didn't open anything new, but I didn't finish anything either - so we are going to call the process a stash busting draw.

The mint green paper that serves as the base is from the Open Road Collection by Crate Paper.  The stickers I layered were mostly "vintage" Crate Paper too.

The next one mixes pieces and parts from lots of old supplies - the pink and white papers were in Studio Calico kits, the stickers and die cuts were Maggie Holmes and that black paper - its from an old October Afternoon Halloween collection.

This one mixes scraps from Pink Paislee and Crate paper with stickers and die cuts from Crate Paper.  The globe with the sentiment is from the Crate Paper Wonder collection and the "adorbs" die cut is from Hello Love.  And the tiny gold puffy hearts - those are from the Pink Paislee Memorandum collection.

And last but not least - my favorite.I love the stickers with a vintage feel from Crate Paper combined with more modern papers from Studio Calico kits.  And adding the blue paper at an angle created an unexpected element.  The gold glitter hearts are from Sevenpaper.

Now if only I had remembered to mail these cards to some of the special people in my life.  I guess I will save them for next year. 

Have a Happy Valentine's Day. 

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Workspace Wednesday - Scraps

I'm a bit of a paper addict and have the hardest time throwing away even a small piece of paper I love.  So sorting, storing and using scraps is a constant challenge in my scrap room.   But I have finally developed a system that works for me,

Most of my scraps are sorted by color or pattern and stored in hanging files.

The hanging files go in this pretty wood file box on the shelf by my desk - in ROYGBIV order of course - patterned paper categories are in the back and vellum/transparencies are in the front.  I like to have papers sticking out the top  (so long as it doesn't get totally out of control) because it helps me remember to use them. 

 I usually try to look here first when I am working on a layout and decide that I need to add a particular color or pattern.  This works really well for larger scraps but small pieces tend to drop to the bottom of the folders and get forgotten.

So I bought a pretty ceramic berry basket at Marshall's to sit on my desk and hold small scraps.  These pieces are great for layering.  It often saves cutting and rummaging through the papers sometimes means I add a color or pattern that would never have occurred to me if I hadn't seen it.

 I don't have any rules about how small is to small or when a scrap goes into the folders instead of the baskets (except that it has to fit in the basket.)  When I am trying to decide whether to keep a scrap I consider size, how much I like the paper, how I think it will work for layering, and if I have larger scraps or even another full sheet.  If I love it and can't get more, it is quite possible that no piece is too small to keep. 

And of course the real trick to keeping scraps under control is to go through them regularly.  I find that I need to go through the berry basket every 2-3 months and the folders once or twice a year.  And I don't think too hard about whether to keep a scrap when I am purging.  I try to go with my first instinct.  And if I don't throw away as many as I hoped, it just means I will need to purge again sooner rather than later.  I cleaned out the berry basket Sunday - so now it looks like this. 

Are your a scrap hoarder or a scrap tosser?  Do you have any tricks for keeping scraps under control?

Share your tips - and thanks for stopping by.  I hope you have a wonderful Wednesday.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Using Scraps

No secret - I love patterned paper - and I hate to throw even small pieces away.  They are great for making cards, for layering and for my occasional foray into pocket pages. And sometimes its fun to challenge myself to pull a layout together from just scraps - other than the layout base, no cutting into new papers allowed.

The first sketch of the month at Stuck?! was perfect for a "scrap only" layout.  It used several papers and showed three photos.  Since I rarely use three photos on a layout, some of those photos provided opportunities for adding more scraps.

I started with the paper scraps I had left from my January Citrus Twist kits.  Then I went to my scrap baskets to find some other papers to add - using the heart paper as a guide, I chose a piece of red and a piece of navy left from other projects.  From there it was just a matter of using the sketch as a a guide and pushing the scraps around until I layered them in a way that appealed to me.

Because there is so much going on with all the patterned papers, I needed to keep the embellishments pretty simple.And you can never go wrong with hearts and arrows, right?

Do you through your scraps away or hoard them?  How do you store them?  I'm planning a Workplace Wednesday post that focuses on storing scraps but I'd love to hear your ideas.  You know organizing supplies is almost as much fun as using them.

Have a great Superbowl Sunday!

Thursday, February 4, 2016


 I almost never scrap by manufacturer, line or collection.  I use kits to pull together my supplies a lot of the time, but generally purchase kits that mix lines.  So I generally don't participate in the challenges at Paper Issues that focus on single collections of lines.  But I gave the SevenPaper challenge in February a try.

SevenPaper is/was a product line from Studio Calico.  They were issuing collections starting with different letters of the alphabet and got as far as G.  But the line is ending their with the split between American Crafts and Studio Calico.  I am really bummed because I loved all of their collections - the collections were all right up my alley and I was already trying to guess what the next collection (H) was going to be called ....... 

I think maybe this layout could be considered my sad goodbye to SevenPaper......

Most of the products come from the Elliot line.  But the green paper is from Felix, the Christmas line.  And the alphas are from Amelia - the very first SevenPaper line.  The phrase stickers were 4 inches wide and I really struggled with them - then I realized that they didn't have to stay that long.  I tore the excess off both sides of the words and treated them like washi - then they were perfect. 

Have a great Thursday.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Workspace Wednesday - Big Alphas

One of my favorite trends in scrapbooking right now are those over-sized chipboard alphas.  They are so much fun and have such an impact on a layout. 

I found room for the first couple in the back of the drawer holding mini alphabets.  But as my collection grew, I needed to find a place to put them.  And I knew I wanted to keep them somewhere where they were visible and easy to use - remember this year I want to use my stash.

I had a pile of Avery Elle Stamp and Die Storage Pouches sitting in a drawer (left over from a stamp de-stash).

When I tried it out, an alphabet fit perfectly in one of the pouches.  That solved one problem - it was easy to use and see the alphas if they were stored in these clear pouches.

But I still needed to keep those pouches somewhere - so I went shopping.  And I found a pretty wire basket with copper accents at Target - it sits on a shelf and holds the pouches carefully.  I can see the alphas and remember to use them. 

It's working great so far.  I am using the alphas and they are staying neat and organized.  And I have a use for all those Avery Elle Pouches sitting in a drawer. 

What's your current organization challenge or best solution - I am really working on organizing my supplies better as a way to use them more.  I'd love to hear your ideas.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

A Different Look

One of the best indicators of a great kit is the ability to create layouts with different moods from the same set of supplies (at least in my opinion).  The first two layouts I shared from the January Citrus Twist kits were bright and fun.  The third layout I made with just supplies from my January box has a totally different feel.

My daughter took a selfie of us together at dinner a couple of weeks ago.  I love that we are close and that she likes to post pictures of us together on her social media accounts.  And those pictures are some of my favorite to scrap. 

We were both wearing shades of black and gray and the photo was pretty neutral - I was afraid all those bright colors would overwhelm the picture.  But I found lots of papers in blues and greys in the kit.  They kept the focus on the photo and the story. 

It's hard to believe these products came from the same set of supplies that I used to create the last couple of layouts I shared.  But I love that the kits gave me the option of bright and fun or soft and pretty. 

What do you think makes a great kit?  I'm currently subscribing to both Citrus Twist and Studio Calico and have to admit to loving them both.  But this year is supposed to be one where I use more than I buy in my scraproom.  So I keep trying to choose (so far with no decision made.)  I'd love your thoughts.

In the meantime, I will just keep getting both and splitting the month.  And at least I am (mostly) not shopping outside my monthly boxes from SC and Citrus Twist. 

Hope you're having a great week.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Off The Edge

Every once in a while, it sems like my layouts all start to look alike.  And lately, it seems like I've made lots of layouts with pretty papers layered under a photo right in the middle of the page.  I like those layouts, but I don't want all my projects to look alike. 

So, for my second layout with my January Citrus Twist kits, I really challenged myself to try to create a layout that was true to my style, but a little different too.  It turned out to be easier than I thought it would be - and I love the finished product.

I started by choosing some patterned papers that I thought worked well together - I initially pulled the heart vellum, the yellow paper from SevenPaper, the Pink polka dot paper from Maggie Holmes and the sheet of paper with different patterned pieces to cut apart from SevenPaper.  I added the floral and text papers later.

I decided to move my layers to one side as an initial break from the photo in the middle of the page.  I cut a wide piece of vellum to go from top to bottom on the page to anchor my photo block on the edge of the page.  Then I started to build the layers.  Angling the pink polka dot paper off the edge was another attempt to take my usual layers and make them just a little bit different. 

I actually added the paper and the photo on top of it and attached it to my layout before I trimmed the pink paper.  Then I turned the layout over and cut the pink paper along the edge of the cardstock base.  That's when the happy accident happened.  I didn't realize the photo also overlapped the edge of the cardstock (maybe it was the cold medicine) but that turned out to be my favorite feature of the design.  Running the photo off the side of the layout created a really different look.

I angled pink paper on the opposite side of the layout, and placed my title to finish the basic design.  I added some puffy "x's" to link the different components together, and then stitched some other "x's" to finish embellishing. 

Am I the only one who feels like they get in a scrappy rut where everything starts to look alike? What are your tricks for breaking the mold on your projects?  I'd love to hear.

I hope your Monday starts out great - thanks for stopping by.