Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Sequin Crazy

OK - I'll admit it.  I've gone from being someone who never used anything sparkly to being obsessed with sequins.  They show up on lots of my layouts - I just can't help myself.  They are so much fun to play with.  And this week Chic Tags is enabling my obsessions with bling.  Their Sunday challenge was to use bling on your layout. 

I broke out someStudio Calico from last month's kits and new lines.  Then I added sequins - lots of sequins.  My layout is inspired by one of the challenges in the SC Bright Ideas class - put together a double grid layout.  I placed two "informal grids" in opposite corners of the page (and used some grid patterned papers and project life cards).  I used the sequins to tie the two grids together. 

I also used a non-traditional title treatment.  Instead of a phrase, I placed words (cousins, fun, grapple) around the layout to create movement and connect the two grids.  And I couldn't resist adding enamel dots. 

Do you have an embellishment you are currently obsessed with - one that shows up on all your layouts?  Hope you had a great Tuesday. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

Sketch a Thon

Sketches are one of my favorites sources of inspiration.  Even when the completed layout looks nothing like the sketch, it provides a great starting point.  So I'm really excited about the My Scraps and More sketch a thon in March.  They are providing a sketch each day with games and giveaways to keep me (and you) motivated.  Registration for the event is open now.  After you register go the the refer a friend challenge and let them know that juliee referred you.  Can't wait to see the first sketch - hope you play too!


Pops of Color

One of the challenges in the Studio Calico Bright Ideas class was to use neutrals with a pop of a single color.  I cheated a bit and used navy and white as my neutrals.  Red provided the pop of color.
Here's what I came up with.

It is a simple design with layers of patterned paper and vellum framing the photo.  I added a variety of embellishments from my stash, including enamel dots, flair and wood veneer. This was also the first time I played with heat embossing - both on stamped images and on the veneer speech bubble.
The title frames the photo.

I'm hoping to get some scrapping in today.  Hope you have a great Monday.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Crate Paper, The Color Red and Using Texture

Crate Prper is featuring work using their products and the color red this week on their blog.  Red isn't a color that I'm drawn to very often, but I was inspired to check out my stash and see what I could put together.  (I generally don't have a lot of red.)  I was surprised by the number of things I pulled out of my stash that were from CP with the color red.  It turned out to be challenging to narrow down my choices, but I ultimately decided to do a birthday layout that combined some older products with some new Party Day embellishments.

I also wanted to incorporate some of the ideas from the Studio Calico Bright Ideas class.  One of the lessons and challenges was about adding texture to your layout.  The class reminded me that I could add texture without adding lots of bulk and in small ways.

I tried to add texture in several ways.  The textured cardstock used as the base was a great starting point and the different doilies provided contrast and softness.  I also sprinkled sequins diagnonally through the layout - because they catch the light, they add tons of visual interest inexpensively and without a lot of fuss.  Here they resemble confetti.

The vellum bag from the Party Day collection added another texture and the numeric title in super glittery thickers  created a great title on top of the bag.  The hidden journaling and the chipboard candle finished the top cluster of embellishments.

When I think of texture, I also think of dimension.  By folding the corner of the patterned paper over the picture and doily, I added an additional pattern and more dimension to my layout. 

I finished the layout with an embellishment cluster at the bottom of the page where the sequins ended.  I wrapped the die cut with twine,  adding more visual interest.

I'm hoping to have more scrapping time tonight.  Hope you enjoy your Thursday.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


I've been struggling to get anything done in my scrap room lately - I walk in, look around, and walk out.  So I went exploring to find an online challenge to get me going.  I looked at lots of sketches and eventually found one at the My Scraps and More Sketch blog that provided a starting point for this two page layout.. 

But I still had a hard time.  Then I read a challenge at the Chic Tags blog that gave me a real jump start - limit your layout to 7 products.  Cardstock and adhesive don't count.   And I have to admit that 7 products sounded pretty easy til I got started.  I had no idea how many things I tend to pull together for a single layout.  But I stuck with it and here is what I ended up with.  I have to admit that it doesn't look much like the sketch at this point.

 Here are the seven products I used.
  1. Studio Calico Wonderland patterned paper - Jingle
  2. Studio Calico Wonderland patterned paper - Ice Caps
  3. Wide Ombre Washi from Studio Calico Kit
  4. Studio Calico Wonderland Ephemera Pack
  5. Basic Grey Life of the Party Cardstock Alphas
  6. MME Winter Wonderland Enamel Dots
  7. Basic Grey Aspen Frost Element Cardstock Sticker
I used both Creative Memories Tape Runner and Dimensional Glue Dots to put my layout together.   I also added cardstock in red, charcoal and aqua.  And based on the example on the Chic Tags blog, I didn't count my base paper which is from the Creative Memories Rugged Tone on Tone pack.

Hopefully, I'll find more inspiration now that I've gotten started.  I'd love to know how you jumpstart yourself when you are in a slump.  Hope your Tuesday was great!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Small Online Shops

In the post CHA madness where all the big manufacturers come out with amazing stuff (and my wish list is long), I sometimes forget about all the small online retailers that I love and who offer new things all year long.  These small retailers can also be an inexpensive way to update your stash.  So I thought I'd share some of my favorites today.

Curtsey Boutique offers fun bits and pieces for layering and embellishment.Set of 4 Shabby Chic Mini Fabric Bows - Red, White, Floral Print, Green

These fabric bows are so cute.  She also offers things like doilies, tags and library cards.

 I love these hand stitched tags at Handmade Modern.

I've gotten some great flair at Paper Play Studio.
Image of Cardboard Cuts - Set of 6 flair buttonsImage of Songbird - Set of 6 Flair Buttons

And I love this collection of sequins at MoneyMilkHoney- what fun colors!

Yacht Club / 4-Colour Sequins Bundle

And recently Caz Hancock referred me to The Greatest View - I want tons of stuff here.
 Bunny Badges - Boy
 I always have a hard time finding easter embellishments for my boys (everything is pink and purple) and these bunny badges are perfect.  But she also has lots of other fun things to make pages special.

And I love the look of confetti pouches on other peoples layouts, but I can't sew a stitch.  But I found this pouch at Any Occasion - now I can have a confetti filled pouch on a layout too!
Vellum confetti pouches- Banner

And not so small anymore, but still special is Freckled Fawn. I love all their washi selections and other bits to make your layout "lovely." Hve you seen the new wood chips?
 FF Heart Wood Chips

These are some of my favorites right now and I love poking around online to find new small retailers.  Do you have favorites I've missed?  Leave a link in the comments so I can check it out.  Thanks - have a great Monday.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Fast Scrap with Studio Calico

[image] Lately one of my favorite challenges is a "fast scrap" where a sketch is posted and you have an hour to put together a layout.  Since I tend to agonize over every photo, paper and embellishment and think that anything that takes less than 4 or 5 hours went together quickly, a "fast scrap" provides a real creative push for me.

My Scraps and More is having an online crop this weekend on their forum and offered fast scrap challenges both Friday and Saturday night.  I thought I'd share the fast scrap layout I did Saturday.

When I participate in a fast scrap, I try to pick pictures and a few papers before the sketch goes up - otherwise I'd spend the entire hour looking for paper.  When this sketch went up, I wasn't inspired at all - but I only had an hour so I just started.

My base paper is from the Creative Memories Enchanted Line - it was an off-white embossed paper.  To make the embossed pattern stand out, I ran a Jenni Bowlin chalking ink across the whole piece of paper.  Then I just started cutting.  The striped paper was a Studio Calico kit exclusive,  I added a piece of olive cardstock.  The rusty orange piece is from the American Crafts Chaps line and was buried in my stash.  The turquoise piece came in a Websters Pages warehouse box.

After I added my picture I used Studio Calico Thickers and the 12x12 sticker sheet from Darling Dear to add a title, adding a DD gem to the middle of the "O"..  The remaining stickers came from the same Darling Dear sticker sheet.  Then I sprinkled sequins (from JoAnns) down the side to finish it off. 

Here's the end result:

I was thrilled with the end result - it was a fun, fast layout that captured the festive spirit of a birthday celebration - and it only took about 30 minutes to put together. 

Hope you're having fun scrapping this weekend.  I'm hoping to play more today.  Enjoy your Sunday!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

MME and Gossamer Blue


My Mind's Eye and Gossamer Blue have joined up to offer an incredible challenge - the winner will get a guest designer spot!  The challenge is to create a layout featuring My Minds Eye products.

I was really excited by the opportunity, and of course, had lots of MME products in my stash - which was a bad thing.  I couldn't figure out what papers I wanted to use.  So I picked a picture instead.  I love this picture of Stephen at his grandparents house.  He was 18 at the time and swinging just like he did when he was 8.  I love that he still has that sense of fun.

After I picked the picture, I realized the new Collectable line was perfect for my layout.  I had an assortment of patterned papers and the enamel dots from that line and My Girl and Boy Crazy sitting on my desk.  (I've never seen a package of enamel dots I don't have to have - they might be my favorite embellishment.)

But I was still having editing problems - I loved all the papers and was having a hard time choosing.  Then the Sunday Sketch was posted at Studio Calico.  I loved the grid design and it gave me the chance to incorporate lots of the great papers and embellishments I had accumulated.  Here;s what I came up with.

First I mounted the picture and placed it on the page.  Then I cut squares and rectangles in different sizes out of a variety of papers and moved them around til I got a placement I liked.  I used brown chalking ink about the edges of each paper piece and the mounted picture to add a little more depth.  Then I added the title, placing the word "swing" on the picture to draw the viewer's eye.  Finally embellishments - I added the largest pieces first and then filled in.  I relied primarily of chipboard and stickers from the Collectable Line but also added sequins from SC kits, enamel dots, and some wood veneer.  I used foam dots to vary the height of the embellishments and layered small pieces with larger pieces.  A little journaling explaining why the picture (which is not a great photograph) is important to me and the layout is done.

I love this line and suspect I'll be replacing all the things I used.  It was the first time I played with new CHA releases and it was so much fun!  Hope you're having a chance to enjoy your stash too.  Have a great weekend!

Friday, February 8, 2013


Since the holidays, I've had a hard time getting back into the groove with my scrapping and my blogging.  We got a new laptop this week that might make it easier.  But in the meantime, I came across this quote on facebook and couldn't resist posting it here.

With all the great new releases, it seems like this might be more true than ever.  I'm hoping to spend most of the weekend in my scrap room playing, so watch for some new layouts next week.  Enjoy your Friday!