Saturday, May 18, 2013

Project Life Is Not for Me

There, I said it! While I am in awe of the time, creativity and diligence that goes into creating a Project Life album, it's just not a good fit for me at this stage of my life. Maybe it's because my kids are both in high school and shudder when I take the camera out. (At least my son does.) Maybe it's because I choose not to scrap about the piles of laundry that need to be put away or the faded supermarket receipts that need organization. Lord knows, I think about that stuff enough in real life, I don't want to think about it when I scrap. Or, maybe it's because I failed miserably at my two attempts to do Project 12. Both times, I made it through March. No further. If I can't do 12 layouts of this type, how can I commit to 52? Maybe it's because I am not a chronological scrapbooker. Instead, I scrap what inspires that moment. I just don't want my scrapping to start to feel like an obligation and I'm afraid that's what Project Life would be....something else for me to fall behind in doing. I am just trying to keep it real.

The fact that the Project Life process doesn't fit with my scrapping style doesn't mean that I am not drawn to a good recap page that highlights events that are not worthy of a full spread. So, I thought I would give a "Year in Review" page a try. I was inspired by Lisa Dickinson's page that you can see here. I kept the overall design of Lisa's beautiful page.  However, rather than matting Instagrams, I cut out 12 Polaroids using a Papertrey Ink die and then filled the center with square pictures that I punched from 4x6 prints. (Note:
I had to snip a little off the bottom of each Polaroid in order to fit all 12 on the page.) To simplify things, I used two Studio Calico kits (34th Street and Penn Station) that I found under the Christmas tree plus a few trinkets from my stash.

Here's my layout:

Let me tell you a little bit about my process for creating this page. Since there were so many photos, I kept my color pallet fairly neutral using various shades of beige, yellow and blue. Also, I used papers with relatively small-scaled patterns. (Many were B sides.) After cutting out all of the Polaroids and pictures, I began arranging them on my page just so that I could get a sense of how the patterns and colors would go with the picture for a particular month. (Note that the yellow dot is actually the stamp that coordinates with the PTI die.) Once I decided on the basic order of things, I adhered the pictures to the frames and then to the background paper. At this point, I embellished each Polaroid as if it was an individual "page." I did repeat some elements (buttons, wood veneer, washi tape, the Martha Stewart starburst punch and the blue alphabet stickers) to create several visual triangles and create a cohesive look.

Here's a closer look:

Since this page was jam packed, I put a list of events on the back of the page. They are:

  • January -- Mark's last Jazz Band Concert at East Meadow High
  • February -- Jenn at the Polar Bear Plunge
  • March -- Melissa's 8th grade Sports Night at Woodland
  • April -- Mark's first day of work at Pathmark
  • May -- Thomas helps Sal plant string beans
  • June -- Melissa's 8th grade graduation
  • July -- Mark's new car
  • August -- Cruise to Bermuda on the NCL Star
  • September -- Kitchen renovation
  • October -- EMHS Jets Marching Band at NYC Columbus Day Parade
  • November -- Superstorm Sandy results in 10-day power outage
  • December -- Christmas Day

Make sure to stop back early next week. I will be sharing a card I made using the centers of those Polaroids.
Studio Calico Penn Station and 34th Street kits 
Additional Supplies:
Tools: Die (Papertrey Ink), Punches (Martha Stewart Starburst and Snowflake, Marvy Uchida Square); Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher
Stamps: Papertrey Ink
Ink: Stampin' Up!, Jenni Bowlin
Additional Embellishments: Chipboard Alphabet (Heidi Swapp); Alphabet Stickers (Lily Bee); Buttons (Bella Blvd.) Glazed Brads (Basic Grey); Wood Veneer (Studio Calico)

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day -- Simon Says Style

Today was a wonderful day! My mom wanted to give me a break from cooking all of the holidays and at 81 years-young she hosted a simple dinner for my family and my brother's family. I am incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful mother and wanted to make her a special card to show her just how much she means to us. I pulled out the Prima sugar letters that I have been sweet on lately plus the Simon Says Stamp May card kit and made this:

And here's a closer look at some of the details:

You can see that I stamped the rose images five times so that I could add dimension to the center flower. Love how easy it was to do with that stamp. To give the leaves a little extra sparkle, I went over the outline with  my Gelly Roll pen in Clear star. And finally for the brown strip that runs behind the sentiment block, I stamped the banner image from this stamp set with VersaMark ink, heat embossed it, and then cut it in half. The pennant edge is hidden under the die cut.

My mom cried when she opened the card which is a true sign that she loved it:!

Finally, I want to share a picture of Melissa and me with my mom today. Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Cardstock, Patterned Paper and Stamps: Simon Says Stamp May Card Kit;
Ink: Colorbox, VersaMark, Tim Holtz Distress, Gelly Roll pen;
Tools: Spellbinders Nestabilities (Labels 18);
Misc.: Prima chipboard; American Crafts twine

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Sending Hugs

I have another card to share from the March Simon Says Stamp card kit. I've lost count of how many I have made with it. I have my April and May boxes waiting to be used but I haven't run out of ideas with this one yet. You really get your money's worth! I should just create a layout with the rest of the kits contents so I can move on to the other kits! Anyway, today's card is for the Simon Says Stamp Happy Mail Challenge. Here's my card:

Just think what happy mail this will be when I tuck a gift card in the little bag!

I did break out my sewing machine for this one. I sewed a border on the the green pattern paper as well as around the flower strip that goes down the the center of the card. The little peak of yellow and white stripes is actually the washi tape that came in the kit. I adhered it to a small strip of cardstock for an extra pop of color. Here's a closer look.

You can see from the peak inside the card that I used coordinating inks to stamp the same flower pattern from the bag around my sentiment. (Sorry, but I forgot to take a picture of the inside.)

Cardstock, Pattern Paper, Stamps, Washi Tape, bag and paper clip: Simon Says Stamp March Card Kit;
Inks: Colorbox (brown, white); Papertrey Ink (pink and green seen on inside of card);
Embellishments: twine (The Twinery); wood flower (Melissa Frances)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

You 2 -- Before and After

Did you ever have a project that you thought was done but then, several months later, when you finally got around to putting it into the album you realized that it was missing something? This is that project for me.

I captured this photo of Melissa and my niece, Sarah, in New York City and it instantly became a favorite. So much so that I decided to scrap it big...I mean 8x10 big.  This is not a size that I am used to scrapping but I was eager to take on the challenge.  The plum color in my niece's jacket made me reach for my Studio Calico papers. Here's my original layout (please excuse the dark picture):

To begin, I fanned out the Studio Calico papers I selected on my table and adding a few others. After choosing my favorites, I began cutting each into varying widths. I thought I had the paper with the buildings in a 12x12 size but I only had it on a 6x6 pad. To make due I cut the piece to fit above and below the pictures. No one will be he wiser. I added a rub-on from my stash to the left of the picture, created my embellishment cluster (using the negative of the "2" on the tag as part of my title) and called it a day a month or maybe longer. Anyway, when I finally got around to putting this page in my album, I realized it was missing something. So, I pulled out some more embellishments and added to each cluster. Here is what I came up with: 

I added washi tape and some journaling tags plus a few other embellishments to each cluster. I also used a Studio Calico chevron stamp near each cluster to draw the eye into the page.

Here's a closer look

The chevron points down to bring the eye to the picture on the top right corner.

The journaling reads: When you were younger, you couldn't be more different. But the older you are, the more alike you become.

So that's that. Better put this one in the album before I want to change it again.

Pattern Paper Studio Calico; Pink Paislee; Basic Grey
Stamps: Studio Calico; Technique Tuesday, Dear Lizzy
Inks: Stampin' UP!
Tools: Fiskars Border Punch
Letters: American Crafts Thickers\
Embelishments: Elle's Studio tags, October Afternoon label stickers; Crate Paper sticker; Jillibean Soup corrugated die cuts; Studio Calico Fab Rips and flower; Recollection washi tape; My Mind's Eye chipboard banner; Simon Says Stamp mini hearts