Monday, April 22, 2013

Chic Tags Color Challenge - and A Non-Traditional Halloween Layout

Chic Tags posts a challenge every Sunday.  I don't always have a chance to complete them, but I always check in for some inspiration.  This week's challenge is a color challenge - full of springy colors.  So I did a Halloween layout - I think it is so much fun to use unexpected colors on seasonal layouts.

 My layout is a two pager, but each page can stand on its own from a design perspective.  I accomplished this by using a common paper for the center block that runs across each page and using a uniform paper and ribbon border across the bottom of the design.  Here's the first page:

And here's the second page:

I also used common embellishments across the pages to tie them together - rubons, wood veneer, and sequins.  I especially like the way the rubons worked when I applied them across multiple papers.

 Do you have tricks for creating two page layouts?  I'd love some tips.  Hope you had a marvelous Monday!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

This Is Me

There are almost no pictures of me in the albums I do.  In fact, there are almost no pictures of me at all.  If you look at our albums it looks like I don't exist.  That's the reason this month's Studio Calico class originally attracted me.  It was going to force me to document my existence.

But I have to say, its turned into much more than that.  I haven't gotten many pages done, but thinking about what to include and how to organize the album has turned into a journey where I am learning about me. And I'm experimenting with things that I might not try in my albums ordinarily, taking the opportunity to play with feminine colors and products, and generally stepping out of my creative box.  This might be the best class ever!

So I thought I'd share the start of my album.

I chose a SNAP album for my project, but am using it with a landscape orientation.  I'm really liking this format.  I decorated the cover with Heidi Swapp Color Shine, Prima wood veneer, October afternoon washi, divine twine, and Amy Tangerine.  Those Amy Tangerine alphas are my all time favorite.

The first page I did was the title page - I originally started with the gray and white Heidi Swapp paper just because I like the bold gray and white stripes.  After I cut the page to size, I had a scrap left.  I sprayed it with some mint color shine and silver Mr. Hueys just to see what would happen.  I loved the end result and ended up using pop dots to apply it to my page for an interesting dimensional effect.  I added some of my favorite embellishments - shipping tags, flair (from Fancy Pants) and sequins plus some Glitz giant rhinestones. One of my biggest challenges is letting go of control, so I pushed out of that box and used random squiggles of glossy accents to attach sequins - they landed where they landed.

I'll share more from my album later - its slow going but lots of fun.  I'd love to know what fun projects you are working on.  Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Organizing My Stash

As my husband likes to say, it seems like I'm always trying to come up with a better way to reorganize my stash.  This weekend the spring cleaning bug hit and I was at it again.  I'm really happy with the end result, so I thought I'd share what I ended up with along with some pictures of my scrap space (with lots of pictures).  (This post is kind of long but I tried to use headings in case you were looking for a particular section of it.

My Desk
Last fall my husband built me a great custom desk made so that I can work comfortably while standing (since I seem to do most of my scrapping that way).  It has cubbies down both sides of the front and shelves along both sides.  Technically, it can be used by two people (like a partner's desk) but I really use the whole space by myself.  The fun stool came from World Market


The top of my desk is my primary workspace.  I use a magazine holder on its side to hold file folders with inspiration pieces and memorabilia related to current projects.  And I have two spinning racks to hold small embellishments and adhesives that I use frequently.

The Spinning Racks
Just before Easter I asked my husband about making a run to Harbor Freight to get a Harbor Freight spinner.  We didn't have a chance to go before the holiday, but on Easter morning I found six round divided trays in my Easter basket.  I call the poor man's Harbor Freight Spinner.  They are each divided into six compartments and are stackable.  I divided mine into two sets of three and love them. He got them at Home Depot where each tray was only $2.50. Roll of washi  that are current favorites sit on the top post of the spinner And the best part is that I can easily add additional tiers if my stash grows (not that anyone can see that happening :))

I have a real weakness for alphas and my collection of thickers might be out of hand.  They were taking up tons of space, I couldn't keep track of what I had and they were everywhere.  Because they are so bulky, my alpha storage was totally inadequate.  Organizing my thickers was a priority this weekend and I ended up with this basket where they are sorted by color.  A few other favorites are along the side and mini alphas sit in front.  The basket fits perfectly on one of my shelves so the thicker problem is solved - they are organized and accessible - and there is room for a few more.

I'd been keeping my cardstock mixed with patterned paper (sorted by color).  But as my paper collection has grown, this has become less functional.  When working on a layout and looking for coordinating cardstock, it was cumbersome to dig through those piles.  And it was difficult to know what colors I had.  This was a problem because I like to stock up when cardstock is on sale and I want to be able to identify what colors I need quickly.  A smaller version of the thicker basket now holds cardstock, sorted by color.  I can find what I need quickly and get a quick idea of colors I need when cardstock goes on sale.  This basket sits nicely on the same shelf as the Thicker basket.

Embellishment Tray
I made a brief attempt at Project Life and had acquired this melamine tray to hold my supplies for that project.  But I'm a project life failure, so the tray was just taking up space.  I filled it with baskets holding some of my favorite embellishments - tags, envelopes and bags, sequins, PL cards, and enamel dots.  The tray serves two functions. First, it is deeper than my shelves so it extends my shelf space.  And when I'm working on a layout I can pull the tray out on my desk and have my "go to" supplies easily available.  It makes cleaning up after a project easy too.

My newest addiction is sequins - they are inexpensive, so much fun and add so much interest to projects.  But I like to keep them sorted by color.  I bought these clear plastic tubes on etsy to hold my sequins.  (The tubes are intended to hold seed beads but they work perfectly.  The tubes fit neatly into a basket (see above).  I can see the colors, check out different combinations and not worry about my colors getting mixed.  (I do use one of the compartments on my spinner to hold a mix of my sequins too because sometimes a random selection works better - and they are so pretty.

Wood Veneer
Wood veneer is my other addiction - I can't resist.  But I like to take it out of the package and store in a way that is easy to use and sort.  I found these divided plastic boxes at the container store.  You can get them in a variety of sizes and with different compartment sizes. (I have four now and need to add one more.) They work perfectly to store wood veneer.

The Rest of My Space
I'm not showing you here, but I have a cropping station along the wall behind my desk.  My most commonly used tools sit along the top and it holds my patterned paper, other tools and less frequently used supplies.

Now if only I could get motivated to organize the rest of my house.  In the meantime, I'd love to hear your storage tips for supplies. Have a great Monday.