January 27, 2016

An Out of the Package & Onto the Page Challenge and A Giveaway!

My "Out of the Pocket and Onto the Page" post earlier this month got me thinking about how concentrated amounts of just one or two types of embellishments can really have a big impact on a page. Tiny items might be overlooked when used by themselves but group them together en masse and they definitely get your attention. I looked back through some of my scrapbook pages and found several examples I'd like to share with you today. (Some of these techniques were inspired by ideas I've seen online - this is my take on those concepts.)

I have quite a collection of brads - how about you? I like that they can add little bits of color and design but for a very long time they've been a forgotten embellishment when I'm working on a page. For this layout, I pulled out my brads and got to work with my paper piercer:
I definitely made a dent in my brad collection with this layout! I like the way they frame the top and bottom of my photo, and matching the brads to the washi colors keeps the page from looking too busy.

This next layout uses paper as the repeated element. This sheet of frames was perforated so that the frames could be used separately on multiple projects. I decided to leave the sheet intact for this page:
The empty frames provided a perfect spot for journaling. You could easily replicate this look with a selection of frames of uniform size and shape.

Here's another way to use paper that was intended to be cut apart:
I shared this layout back in July as part of my "Endless Summer" CKC kit. Instead of cutting out the rectangle shapes, I trimmed the sheet to 8-1/2 x 11 and treated it as a piece of patterned paper.

Using an entire sheet of stickers, without removing them from their backing, can be a great way to make an impact on your page. I added a sheet of number stickers here (cut into four pieces to stretch them):

An entire sheet of word stickers balances my photos on this page:

This layout features a whole sheet of cut-apart tabs and labels that provides a nice home for some tiny embellishments:

 I have a bit of a label obsession but I can justify my collection when I use them like this:
The vertical line anchors my photostrip and brings lots of color and fun to the page.

Chipboard frames are another one of my favorite supplies and I was able to use most of one package here:

I used an entire sheet of rub-ons to make a whimsical frame for my photo on this layout:

Why add a couple of leaves when you can use the whole package to make a wreath to surround your photos?

Stamping is another fun way to add a little pow to your page. On this layout, I used a speech bubble stamp to reinforce the topic of my page:
For this page, I fussy-cut speech bubbles from a piece of patterned paper, stamped in each one, and then arranged them in a column covering one side of my layout:

Do you have sheets of alphabet stickers and thickers with unused letters, numbers and punctuation? I layered all my orphan question marks on this layout (I did trace several with colored pens to fill in the empty spots and there aren't any at all under the green envelope):
I placed a sheet of vellum over them to tone down all that color. 

And finally, here's a page with a big assortment of wood veneer that I first painted with pale yellow acrylic paint:

So now for the challenge...I'm going to make another page using one type of embellishment en masse. Will you join me? Please leave a link to your project in the comments below - I would enjoy seeing how you get some embellishments out of the package and onto the page!

And as an incentive, how about a giveaway? I've gathered together some of my favorite embellishments:
There's a set of chipboard frames from the "I Am" collection from Simple Stories, puffy stickers from Seven Paper, a die cut pack from the Maggie Holmes "Shine" collection, enamel dots from the Crate Paper "Wonder" collection, neutral brads from My Mind's Eye, a pack of journaling cards from Jillibean Soup, puffy stickers from the Cedar Lane collection by Pink Paislee and a cute little stamp from Citrus Twist.

You can enter the giveaway by leaving me a comment (let me know what your favorite embellishment is, what you'd like to see from me here on my blog, what you've been working on lately, etc.). If you participate in the challenge, you can get an additional entry by leaving me another comment with a link to your completed project. I'll announce the winner on February 14th.

I'll be playing along too and will show you my layout in the post announcing the giveaway winner.

January 23, 2016

More January CKC Layouts

I was able to make three more scrapbook pages from my "A Little Bit of Lovely" kit. Our weather has been gray and dreary lately and playing with the happy colors of this kit has definitely brightened a few of my days.

The first layout commemorates a quick local roadtrip I took with my youngest daughter to Carlo's Bakery (of "Cake Boss" fame). She loves to bake and has watched many episodes of the show so when we found out that he had opened a new location in our state, we knew we had to visit and sample some of the offerings. No sacrifice is too great for a scrapbook page, right?!
The background is my "on-a-whim" paper. Since I liked the branding strip of hearts at the bottom, I just trimmed a bit off the top to keep the size at 12x12. I added a smaller square of the gray feather paper and then arranged my four photos in a very loose grid.
I used a phrase from the script foam letter sheet for my title, added my story on a journaling card, and tucked in some washi strips, labels and tags in a few places around the page.
My next layout is one that's been on my scrapbooking "to do" list for a few months. 
Miller's was a bakery shop not too far from my grandparents' home in Rhode Island and their donuts are a very delicious memory from my childhood. They've been closed for many years so I don't have a photo of the shop or the donuts but that didn't stop me from getting this important-to-me story told.
I supplemented my kit supplies with these cute donut shapes from Prima and used a chipboard donut (Crate Paper perhaps?) as the "O" in my title.
I added some paper strips to the side and attached some tabs from the Bella Blvd. sticker sheet in my kit. I'm especially happy with how this looks.

And now that I've made you hungry, here is my final page - and it's not about food!
This is one of the rare times that I don't have more than a sentence of journaling on a page but in this case, I just really wanted to get that photo scrapbooked. I did write everyone's names and ages on the back but otherwise, the title says all I want to say about it: "Happiness is a Christmas Day selfie with your cousins."

I arranged the word stickers from Fancy Pants as a border all around the page, attached three of the Freckled Fawn paper clips, and used the gold script word from Heidi Swapp as the title.
The puffy stickers sheet (also from Fancy Pants) had little triangle pieces that matched the design of the background paper (from Crate Paper) and so I added a few of them around the page to add a little more texture.
And with that, I think I'm ready to retire this kit. February is just around the corner and I'm looking forward to working with a new inspiration kit!

January 17, 2016

January CKC Kit Layouts

I have three layouts to share today and I used my "A Little Bit of Lovely" kit to make them.

This first layout came together fast - I'd already arranged all the photos in a collage shape for another layout and then abandoned it because I just couldn't get it to work out. I knew that sooner or later I'd figure out what to do with it, especially because it features a series of now & then photos which are one of my favorites to scrap!
I also really like that "Happy" paper from Scraptastic and am trying to get the most out of every scrap of it. I used it here as a border on three sides of the layout but I gutted the inside part to save for another page. All that was left to do was add a transparent circle, a phrase sticker at the top, a couple of tiny puffy hearts and a bit of journaling.
I started this next page with no particular end in mind - I just felt like playing with my kit  supplies.
I used a grid design, added different types of embellishments to each square but left the center square completely blank for some journaling. 
Once I finished playing, I still had no idea what I would say so I just set the layout aside, knowing that eventually I would come up with something. I was initially thinking that I would write about scrapbooking since some of the embellishments were leading me in that direction (the "don't forget" paper clip; the "do what you love - love what you do", "create something beautiful" and "capture every day" pieces of washi; and the "days we'll remember" sticker). The next day, I came upon this post at the Whimsical Musings blog with a prompt to "be inspired by things that have never been". I decided that my journaling would be about how I sometimes scrapbook my hopes and dreams and that future generations will be able to know a little more about me because of that.
This last layout makes use of the large wood veneer frame I included in my kit. I thought it would be a great spot to hold some journaling.
I wouldn't have imagined that I would be able to use my kit to scrapbook something Christmas-y but it somehow worked with this photo. I just picked the red and gold embellishments and then added the black and white polka dot washi and the cute camera washi too.
I made a few more layouts from this kit - I'll be back to share in another post.

January 14, 2016

What I've learned from CKC

I started scrapbooking in 1996 after a family trip to Disney World. Over the years, I acquired a lot of “stuff” as I purchased supplies from many different sources. For a while, I spent more time shopping than scrapbooking and I reached a point where I felt too overwhelmed to make a page - I felt strangled by my supplies.

This month marks one year since I began following the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog. Ihas reignited my creativity while helping me use up some of the supplies I’ve accumulated over the years. Back in June, I mentioned that I would be posting about what I've learned about my scrapbooking from participating in CKC. I thought my "anniversary" would be a good time to tell you the benefits I’ve gotten from playing along.

1. I’ve Refined My Style - Making a kit helps me see what supplies I use often and what supplies I like and don’t like. For example, I discovered that I really like using chipboard and I don’t like using glittery stickers, so when I’m tempted to buy some cute little glittery stickers, I know I won’t use them and will spend my money on something else. You didn't think I'd completely give up shopping, did you?

2. I Feel Less Guilt - Going along with the above point, I don’t feel as guilty getting rid of certain things because I am using up other items. I can open a pack of embellishments, use most of them in a kit and donate what is left without feeling too guilty because at least I’ve managed to use most of the package. The leftovers are usually items that aren’t my style so I know I won’t miss them when they’re gone.

3. I Scrap Faster - When I work from my CKC kit, my supplies are all right there in front of me. I don’t waste time searching for just the “perfect” item (and really, is there just one “perfect“ item anyway?). I’ve learned that I can find something appropriate within my kit.

4. I Make Happy Surprises - When I put my kit together, I generally just look at one side of a patterned paper. When I’m working with my kit, it’s a fun bonus to turn over a paper and find another option to use!

5. I Discover Unexpected Combinations - I’m sure this happens to you: you purchase a collection kit and inevitably discover that one or two papers or embellishments just aren’t “you” and you resign yourself to never using them. Combining different collections from a variety of manufacturers in my kit has helped those items become more usable to me. For example, I had a chipboard sticker sheet that included a little girl’s dress and I couldn’t imagine I would find a use for it, but I did!

6. I’ve Broadened My Horizons - I was stuck in a rut using the same types of embellishments but I’ve been adding different kinds into my kits and I’m getting them used. I had ribbon, twine and brads stored in jars that I’d been ignoring but now they are making their way on to my pages.

7. I Make Less of a Mess - This is a big one for me. While I don’t need a completely pristine area in which to work, I can only handle so much clutter. I keep my kits in 12x12 scrapbook containers from Iris. Everything is contained which is also important because I don’t have a designated scrap space. I tend to use our dining room table so it’s nice to be able to clean up fast when I need the table for entertaining.

8. I Have More Enthusiasm For My Hobby - I’m rediscovering items and remembering why I bought them in the first place. It’s fun to “shop” my supplies to find items to match the inspiration kit.

9. I Am More Inspired - I’m seeing old product with fresh eyes when I combine it with new product. I’ve challenged myself to see “how old I can go” - can I use that paper from 2007? In most cases, the answer is definitely yes!

10. I Feel Like I’m Part of a Community - The Master Forgers and everyone who participates in CKC have been so welcoming and nice. I enjoy seeing how people interpret the inspiration and how they use their kit to make wonderful layouts. I’ve been introduced to some great scrapbookers and bloggers through the monthly link up.
A few months ago I was honored to be selected to join the team of Master Forgers!

So there you have it - CKC has radically changed how I scrapbook. Have I convinced you yet? Give it a try - you will definitely be hooked on it too!

January 12, 2016

Out of the Package & Onto the Page

You may have heard the saying "less is more" but in scrapbooking, sometimes more is just perfect! The layout I'm sharing today uses not one, not two, but three entire packages of embellishments from my January CKC kit "A Little Bit of Lovely".

I included this Freckled Fawn Woodland embellishment kit when I was putting my kit together:
Freckled Fawn Woodland Kit  
My favorite part of the kit is those felt leaves stickers and I was determined to get them on a layout this month. As I looked at them, I got the idea to use them to make a wreath on my page. Since I was planning to make a 12x12 layout, I knew there wouldn't be enough leaves to make the wreath and I would need to supplement them with something else. I then remembered the sheet of black & white doodled flower stickers (also from Freckled Fawn) that I added to my kit and thought they would be perfect: they were floral and would match well in theme with the leaves, and since they were black & white, they wouldn't clash with all that color either.

I arranged the leaves in a circle, leaving a little open space at the left to add my photo. Next, I adhered the flower stickers (with pop dots) and then started to fill in the gaps with some of the enamel dots from that same Woodland Kit. I added the remaining enamel dots to the centers of the flowers and then put my photo, which is also lifted on pop dots, into place.

At this point, I started thinking about my journaling. I try to have some sort of story on almost every page; while I like to occasionally make pages that are just for creativity's sake, I really like to record a memory as often as I can. I got a burst of inspiration looking at the white script word stickers from the Woodland Kit. The sheet included the word "snug" and I started thinking about using "snuggle" as my title. I was able to cut and paste the missing letters from some of the other words on the sticker sheet - fortunately, those foam letters are very easy to manipulate. I placed the title on the photo, along with one of the little hearts from the sheet.

The photo was taken the day we brought our youngest daughter home from the hospital and our oldest daughter wanted to hold her. My journaling reads:
"When I photographed this moment over 21 years ago, I wasn't thinking too far into the future. I couldn't have imagined back then how close you two would be, the secrets you'd share, the fun you'd have together, or the lifelong bond that began with this one little snuggle."
Although the completed layout includes the entire sheets of the leaves, the flowers and the enamel dots, it still has a nice, airy feel because those were the only embellishments on the page and I left lots of white space around my design.

I think I might make "out of the package & onto the page" a regular feature of both my scrapbooking and my blog. I hope I've inspired you to give it a try!

January 10, 2016

A Little Catching Up - Felicity Jane December Kit, Part 2

I've already shared two of the layouts I made using my December "Cozy" kit from Felicity Jane. Here are three more scrapbook pages from that kit.

I featured our family Christmas card on this first page.
This was an easy page to put together. I used the thin washi tape to bring a little pop of red to the mint and green striped paper before I adhered two of our leftover cards (to show the front and the back). Next, I layered two of the small cut-apart cards to hold my title and the date. 
The triangular Christmas trees are from the kit's embellishment sheet - I like the fun little detail they add to the page. 
All that remained to do was write my journaling and add the bow flair to the top of the wreath.

As we were eating dessert at my parents' house on Christmas Eve, the cookie tray on the table caught my eye. Well, it caught my eye for a reason in addition to it being dessert, being delicious and being chocolate! I realized that my mom makes a cookie tray like this every year and I've never scrapbooked about it. I took a photo of the partially demolished tray (better than nothing, right?) and resolved to tell that story. And here it is:
I kept to a red, white and black color scheme with a large block of the scripted words paper, my favorite one from the kit. I used Amy Tangerine foam word thickers for my title and the three wonky hearts scattered on the page. 
I attached some buttons and little pennants for a few more details. And it's true - I "love this" tradition of my mom's cookie tray!
My last layout is a journaling-only one and it tells the story of what I've come to think of as my "Christmas moment".
The journaling reads:
Every Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, it finds me: a sweet, magical moment when I truly feel the joyful spirit of the season.
Sometimes it finds me when I'm alone; sometimes it finds me in a room full of people. Sometimes it finds me in a moment of quiet reflection; sometimes it finds me in the chaos and noise. But it always finds me.
It's found me watching Alison and Sarah singing in the children's choir at Sacred Heart; it's found me reading an Advent devotional about cradling a newborn infant; it's found me looking at the twinkling lights of our tree; it's found me singing "Silent Night" in our dimly lit church at Christmas Mass.
When it finds me, I feel overcome with peace. When it finds me, I feel overcome with joy. When it finds me, I feel overcome with love.
It finds me when I least expect it, but that magic moment of Christmas always finds me.

I kept the page simple; I wanted to keep the focus on my story, which is one I've been meaning to tell for a few years.
Even though it wasn't my intention at the start, I'm very happy that I used this kit to tell some of my important Christmas stories. I think I'm ready to move on to other topics now, but I won't make any promises. What stories have you been telling lately?