Thursday, November 29, 2012

A new Favorite Tool

File Tab Punch

I started scrapping with Creative Memories and most of my tools are still CM products.  But I have a new favorite and its from W R Memorykeepers.  Check out this tab punch.

If you visit often, you know I like to stretch my stash.  So I save lots of scraps, especially of patterned paper I love.  But lots of those scraps are really too small to do much with and I have to purge my scrap file often.  Now I take those little scraps and punch tabs.  I keep them in a small bowl on my table and when I am looking for those bits and pieces to finish off a layout, they are ready to go.  And I get to use up all those scraps of my favorite patterned paper.

Bracket Tab Punch
I like it so much that I'm asking Santa for the bracket tab punch.

I'd love to know what your favorite tool is and what your favorite way to use scraps is.  Make sure you follow my blog and leave me a comment, telling me what your favorite tool is and/or how you use up your scraps to win a pack of Studio Calico "bits and pieces from the Black Friday grab bags.  You never know - some other grab bag goodies might find their way into the package too.  I'll draw from all the comments I've received by December 7th.

Hope you have a great Thursday. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Yearbook Ephemera

 I love back to school, and back to school layouts are always some of my favorites.  But last week i was working on the first day of school layout for Elisabeth's 5th grade album and it wasn't going well.  I kept second-guessing my paper choices - even changed them a couple of times - and couldn't come up with a layout design I liked.  The only constant was the background paper from Authentique.  Then I opened the Yearbook Ephemera pack and it all came together.

The bits and pieces in the ephemera package pulled it all together.  And they mixed perfectly with the Amy Tangerine "ReadySetGo" embellishments that have always reminded me of school and some stitched tags I got from MishMash.  I love that the layout captures the spirit of the first day of school - it's happy and fun with a focus on both school and friends.

But I have to admit - I used lots of those bits and pieces in that package of ephemera.  A second package might need to find its way into my stash.  (And I wasn't sure I wanted it the first time.)  What scrappy products have inspired your work lately?

I need to finish getting ready for work - hope you have a great Tuesday!

Monday, November 26, 2012

DD - November

Since I decided that I was going to start my "December Daily" with Thanksgiving, I wanted to create a  clear division between the months.  So I put together this 2 page layout to identify the section of the album that was "November." 

My favorite element is the wood veneer tag from the Container Store.  The journaling explains why the album starts with Thanksgiving and goes through December. Generally, I'm happy with how this page turned out, but next year (if I do this project again) I think I would invest in chipboard pages to use as dividers for a clearer break.

I have to admit that I'm finding 6x6 pages a bit challenging after working with 12x12 pages for so long.  My first instinct was to use only small elements, but I'm finding that I prefer pages incorporating larger scale elements.  They seem to have a cleaner design and more impact.

Well its back to work for me today - hope you have a great Monday!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

December Daily - Title Page

After I finished my cover I found my self with a number of decisions - when to start, how to get started, journaling and so on.

When to Start
Traditionally, December Daily albums start on December 1.  But I feel like our holidays really start with Thanksgiving and we jump right into the beginning of our Christmas preparations with shopping, baking and decorating.  And our anniversary is November 24th which is another big part of the fall and winter celebrations.  I kept changing my mind about whether to wait til December 1 to start, but when push comes to shove, the project should work for me as a way to capture our holidays.  So I am starting with Thanksgiving and moving forward from there.

Every Day?
The thought of having to capture an image from every day is a little overwhelming for me.  And from past experience with projects, I know I have a tendency to give up on the whole thing if I miss a day in that kind of project.  Starting with Thanksgiving just increases the odds of a missed day.  So while I recognize the value in capturing an image each day and focusing on some of the small things that make up our lives and holiday celebrations, I've given myself permission to miss.

Title Page
I'm a big fan of title pages, but was a bit stuck with how to get started - since I was starting with Thanksgiving and we have both an anniversary and a birthday falling from my starting point to Christmas, I wasn't sure how to approach it.  It really needed to capture more than Christmas. Last night I buckled down and focused on starting and ended up with this winter themed page.  I used "Our Holidays" as the title.

I stuck with my color scheme and pulled paper and embellishments from my DD box and my scraps.  I love the way the yellow Heidi Swapp trim accents the other colors.  And the Pink Paislee letters were the perfect touch of bling.

Foundation Pages
I was really struggling with the concept of foundation pages.  I don't know what pictures/events will fall on what days and wasn't sure how to approach this.  And when I gave myself permission to miss days, it got even more complicated.  So I'm generally not doing foundation pages. I will put together a few that I can move around easily for events I know we'll include, but I'm going to try to take a few minutes every day or two to put together the pages for the photos I know I want to include. (Pages for the last few days are high on my list for today.)

Journaling provides a challenge in two ways.  First I think it is important that the tone be consistent all the way through - and that it captures some of the less perfect parts of our holiday.  (The concept of perfect holidays always adds pressure and stresses me out, so I am hoping this is a reminder of less than perfect holidays being special in future years.)  I am going to journal as if I am keeping a diary and think Iwill end up with lots of bullet style entries/

The harder part for me is the actual journaling. For years, I've typed all myjournaling and printed on vellum.  But we are having some pretty extensive computer problems and have a very tight budget.  As a result, I can't print right now.  So I'm returning to handwritten journaling for this album.  Haven't decided what to do for other projects yet. 

Have your started your December Daily?  Is it limited to December or are you starting earlier?  I'd love to hear how you're approaching your project.

Have a happy and relaxed Sunday!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

A Scrappy Black Friday

Thought I'd keep a list of scrappy sales - love to learn about others.

Studio Calico - Black Friday sale at 9 CST and a cyber Monday event

Basic Grey - exclusive kits up to 75% off

My Scraps and More - 55% off coupon code BLKFRI2012

Two Peas - 40% off sale

Stop and Scrap - Daily Christmas Countdown Items - daily deals, coupons and manufacturer discounts - check out deals on website

October Afternoon - Santa Sacks

Jillibean Soup - 47% off everything

Paper Issues - 30% off everything - code GOBBLE

Happy Black Friday - enjoy your shopping and share those deals!

Getting in the Spirit

Just a quick post to share a holiday layout I did a couple weeks ago - the photo's a bit fuzzy, but the layout used lots of bits andpieces from my stash and was fun to put together.  I love that the paper is not Christmas paper.

And a close up of the embellishment cluster

Now off to bed so I can get an early start on those pies and that turkey in the morning.  I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.  I'll be making my shopping plans in the middle of cooking and would love to know what great crafty sales your checking out.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Cover

I'm a pretty simple scrapper and don't play with lots of techniques and products.  So the cover of my album presented some challenges.  In an earlier post, I told you I picked this 6x6 American Crafts chipboard album as a cost effective option for my first DD attempt.

But I kept looking at the beautiful covers people were showing online for their DD projects - I wanted a pretty cover too.  So I did a little research and took a trip to Michaels where I bought gesso, white craft paint and mod podge (and a few small foam brushes).

Gesso I learned provided a good base coat over the chipboard, creating a smooth white surface.  So I painted the cover with gesso and let it dry.  Then I added a coat of white craft paint.  After that the embellishments - I used the cardstock stickers and elements stickers from the MME Winter Wonderland collection along with an odd sticker, translucent sequins, and some sparkly ribbon left in my stash (from I don't know when since I don't do sparkles very often).

I scattered translucent sequins on the front, used spray ink on those cute wood veneer numbers to add the year, and here is what I ended up with:

The Front

The Back

The spine
Now I was pretty happy with the end result, but my husband was quick to point out that I had gotten the album backwards.  But for a first attempt at this kind of project, I'm really pleased.  What did you do for your DD cover?

Holiday Giveaways

One of the things I love about the scrapbook community is the generosity evident.  Whether its in an offer to share supplies at a crop, the Studio Calico SeCret Santa exchange (where people buy and dig through their stash to really fill a box with surprises, or great online giveaways, you can find examples everyday.  And it seems like online giveaways are really piling up right now.  Here are some I've come across recently.

All About Scrapbooking is giving away a great Christmas themed prize pack.

Melissa has another great giveaway at Creating From the Heart - lots of goodies that are holiday themed and just great additions to your stash and scrap space

What giveaways do you know about?  I'd love to add them to this post.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


Just made a quick Christmas one pager - trying to get in the spirit of thes eason so I weill do my December Daily pages.  I started with this sketch from Artful Delight and found it came togther really quickly.

November Layout Sketch Challenge ASC #26

I did some things that were fun and a bit different from me.  Down at the bottom of the page I dipped a small shipping tag in a bowl of sequins for a quick bit of bling - I thought it tied into the sprinkles theme nicely.

And at the top of the page I used chalking ink to add color to the corner.  I also tried ink splatters, but wsn't crazy about them so I covered most of them up with the die cut.

Creating white space by pushing the layout to one corner goes against the grain for me too.

It was a fun quick project that might help me find my scrapping mojo.  Hope your having fun in your scrap space.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

December Daily - The Album

After I picked my papers, I had to choose an album for my project.  Because this year is a "test" to see if I will really do a DD project froms tart to finish I had two criteria.

  1. It needed to be inexpensive - remember one of my goals is to keep the cost down in case I don't really do it.
  2. It needed to be small scale - if the project is too elaborate, I'll never do it.
I've also been fascinated by some of the posts I've read about customizing the covers and was hopeful that I could find an album that would provide the opportunity to experiment with decorating the cover.

I looked at Michaels and joAnns first, thinking they would be the most cost effective places, but couldn't find anything.  So I took my 30% off coupon and went to Archivers, hoping I could find something affordable that would work.  I eneded up with this American Crafts 6x6 chipboard album cover.


The binding is black, the chipboard cover gives me an opportunity to customize, and it was only $10.  After my 30% off coupon, it was really affordable.  I paid $7.

I like the 6x6 size because it created an affordable, easy option for pages.  I bought french vanilla cardstock and cut it into quarters for 6x6 pages. ( I have some ideas about enhancing those pages that I am going to experiment with and will share later.)

Are you working on a DD project - I'd love to hear your tips for putting together a great project and keeping the cost donw.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Channeling Stephanie Howell

I've had a terrible cold and haven't scrapped for almost two weeks.  But over the weekend I read a post by Stephanie Howell where she talked about using sequins and doilies on all her layouts recently.  Something about the post inspired me, so I packed up the albums I had been working on for Nicholas and got out the pictures I had printed for Elisabeth's 5th grade album.

The result was this layout (which uses both a doily and sequins. 

I love that it turned out girly without being overly frilly or fussy - just like Elisabeth.

What's inspired you lately?

Sunday, November 11, 2012

December Daily

About a month ago, I started to see lots of posts on chat boards and blogs about December Daily albums.  The idea of documenting each day of your holiday celebration intrigued me, but I was reluctant to invest funds in an expensive kit that I wasn't sure I would use.  And I have a huge stash of Christmas supplies which I keep adding to because I am such a fan of those collections.  But I have to admit I ws relieved when kitss tarted to sell out, removing the temptation.

I finally decided to do my own DD kit using supplies in my stash (both old and newly acquired).  This way I will have minimal investment in the project if I don't really do it.  But editing my supplies to put together a cohesive project is key.  So I decided to really approach it like I was putting together a kit.

First I pulled some cardstock to establish a color scheme.

I chose a dark green, a light green, gray, aqua/turquoise, red and a buttery yellow.

Then I chose my patterned papers.  Editing is not my strong point so I ended up with a bunch.

Here are my choices:
  • Carta Bella Beautiful Moments Damask (B side)
  • MME Winter Wonderland Stripes
  • Studio Calico Yearbook Most Likely (B side)
  • MME Winter Wonderland Christmas Trees
  • AC Amy Tangerine Ready Set Go Globe Trotter (B side)
  • Studio Calico Chevron (I think this is from a kit) (B side)
  • Canvas Corp Green and Ivory Ribbon Stripe
  • Crate paper Little Boy Blue Leo
  • Basic Grey Exclusive Red and White PP from SC Sock Hop Kit
  • AC Dear Lizzy Christmas Carols and Cards
  • Blue and White Checked From Michaels Paper Stack (I think)
  • Anna Griffin (red with large white glittered snowflakes)
  • Basic Grey Jovial Blizzard
  • Bella Blvd Winter Wonder Icy
  • Lily Bee Christmas Cheer Christmas Wreath
  • Lily Bee Christmas Cheer Peppermint
  • Fancy Pants St. Nick Garland
  • Crate Paper Peppermint Collection Present
  • MME Indie Chic Citron Grow (B Side)
  • 7 Gypsies Postale Collection Priority
  • Crate Paper Peppermint Collection Embellish
  • Pink Paislee Vintage Vogue Taffeta
  • Me & My Big Ideas Snowflake Print with silver accents
  • Basic Grey Fact and Fiction Blue Diamond Grid
  • MME Winter Wonderland Presents
  • Basic Grey Exclusive for SC Sock Hop kit - B side with red number pattern
  • MME Miss Caroline Fiddlesticks Love Wood Grain
I will be posting about my choices for alphas, embellishments and my progress (if I really put this together between now and Christmas.

I'd love to know how you are scrapping your holiday - did you invest in a kit or are you doing your own thing?
Now I'm off to the District All-Star game to watch Nicholas play.  I'm thrilled that we are having a gorgeous weekend.  Enjoy your Sunday!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Team Pictures

My sons (now 18 and 20) have played on tons of sports teams over the years and I'm fortunate that my husband takes great action photos.  But I always am left with those team pictures and formal individual shots the school or sports program sells you.  They are boring and not fun to scrap, but I want to include them in the albums I make for the boys.  The team pictures areoften the only shots of all the boys they played with.

My Scraps and More had a challenge last month where you scrapped hard to scrap pictures.  So I chose a formal team and individual picture from Nicholas's freshman year. 

The layout turned out great - bright, fun and simple.  This cluster of embellishments that incorporated the title and the border treatment provided a great point of interest.  I used 2 different shipping tags from the office supply store, two old packages of soccer stickers, an Amy Tangerine camera sticker, MME Oliver enamel dots and a leftover number sticker from an old alpha pack.  The pennants are a Heidi Swapp border.

And since I like to use two page layouts in the albums I make for the kids, I put his certificate of participation from the school on the other side.

Now if only I could remember the names of all the boys.  Maybe I have an old program laying around.

Have a great Friday.  Hope you have time to scrap this weekend.