Friday, April 27, 2012

National Scrapbook Day

What are you doing Saturday?

Saturday, May 5, is the 18th Anniversary of National Scrapbook Day.  I hope you set aside some time on Saturday to celebrate the hobby that we all love & share.  You don't have to actually "scrapbook," you could:
  1. Visit your local craft store, stroll the isles, or make a purchase
  2. Have a glass of iced tea and read browse your favorite scrapbook magazine
  3. Host a crop.  If you've never hosted your own...they're loads of fun.  The girls will bring everything they need.  Just give 'em a table and a chair! Make it a potluck. Chocolate is good.  Chocolate is very good.  So is wine!
  4. Set up a photoshoot (you're gonna need those pictures later!)
  5. Pull down a completed scrapbook off the shelf and browse through the pages you so lovingly created (even better when you share with friends or family)
  6. Spend some time online...browse the galleries or meet a new friend.  SHOP!
  7. Come visit us over at Let’s Scrap.  There is so much to see and do!  We don’t like to do anything instead of just celebrating on Saturday, there is lots going on for the whole month.
Because the site has members
from all over the world, they call it:
 (Inter)National Scrapbooking Month

Look for a special NSD challenge from me starting Thursday, 5/3 and running through Tuesday, 5/8!

Whatever you choose to do or however you choose to do it...I'm so glad to share this passion with you.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Why Do We Do It?

Just one question.  Why?

Why do we scrapbook? Why do we take the time to record our memories? Is it for ourselves?  For our family?  Generations yet to come?  Because it makes us healthy, wealthy and wise?  (Definitely not the wealthy's just a tad bit expensive, isn't it?  Unless, of course, you're a professional scrapbooker.) 

With the 17th anniversary of National Scrapbook Day just around the corner (always the first Saturday of May and a holiday that is observed celebrated! in our house), I thought it might be a good time for some reflection...before the fun and games begin.  What is your motivation?  What are the reasons you pour your heart and soul into your scrapbooks.  What prompts you to include journaling on your page?  (I know several who don't include any words...none whatsoever...for them it's all about the creative process...and that's okay.) 

If we have a clear understanding of why we do it, then we can understand why we make certain product choices, why we choose particular topics to document, and why we write what we write and what gets included.  I also believe that if we know the "why" it will help us through some of the dry times, when inspiration has flown out the window, picture opportunities seem few and far between, and we have a BIG creative block.  We just aren't "feeling" it.  I don't know about you, but that happens to me quite often.

If you know you're trying to capture today's stories for your kids, or to work out your emotions, work through a particularly hard moment, or record the crazy things that happen to you on a daily basis, then there's your reason to return and try again when you get stuck.  It's the why we do it!

Just for today, spend a few minutes thinking about why you scrapbook.  Tell me why in the comments, I'd love to know.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

4-18-12 Sketch

New scrapbook sketches are posted on Let's Scrap every Wednesday.  Two-page layouts every week, except for the 3rd Wednesday of the month.  That sketch is always a card for the cardmakers in our group.  This is today's sketch:

While I do love to make cards, I have gobs and gobs of them.  So...I'm thinking...and thinking...

I have wanted to use a big format photo as my main page element for some time.  It is so easy to do digitally, but traditionally, takes a little bit of work and pre-planning.  In this case, I simply turned the cloud paper design from the sketch into my own background paper using a photo.  Techniques I used:
  1. I opened MS Publisher (no fancy software required) and created a legal size document.  Inserted a picture of Gracie and formatted the picture size so that the width was 12".  I kept the original aspect ratio because I didn't care what the height ended up being because it was going to be my background paper. 
  2. I printed it on legal-size matte photo paper and trimmed off the extra 2" so I ended up with a 12" x 7.875" print (my new background paper).
  3. I adhered it to a 4.5" x 12" brown piece of cardstock.
  4. I then cut a 3.5" x 11" piece of patterned paper (Basic Grey Whiskers).
  5. The sketch called for heart ribbon.  So, I then added a 1.5" x 11" of the same brown cardstock mounted on top of the patterned paper (gives it a seamless illusion) and hand cut heart pawprints from a patterned piece of paper (Best Creation Inc. Puppy Love).
  6. The round photo is cut from a 4" x6" photo using my CM circle cutter (the best tool ever!).  I mounted it on cream colored cardstock (such a perfect match to Gracie's coloring).  The photo is mounted on foam dots.
  7. I wrapped twine (American Crafts) around the photo twice and tied a bow (the foam dots help keep that twine from sliding around).
  8. The big G is a foam cut out.
  9. The sketch called for clouds.  I turned those into white hearts - punched from white glitter cardstock and adhered directly to my background photo/paper with foam dots.  (This glittered cardstock is new from Best Creation Inc.  No more wearing glitter as it does not flake off one's awesome!)
  10. The sentiment is a sticker and so is the little pawprint lower right hand corner (Best Creation Puppy Love).
  11. The sketch called for ruffled ribbon. I simply used plain ribbon and looped it for dimension and made my own ruffles. The pawprint ribbon (The Ribbon Boutique) is stapled under every "loop" with my Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher.
Sorry...couldn't resist!

  12.  After I had finished all of the above, I wasn't quite happy with it.  I went back and cut more  hearts out of the Best Creation paper, cut them in half and mounted them under the 1.5" brown strip of cardstock.  I love that it added a bit more separation, interest, and color to the page.
There you have it.  A card sketch easily adapted to a 12" x 12" layout...showcasing my baby!  If you have questions, or I didn't quite explain the detail...just ask.

Friday, April 13, 2012


This turned into a rather long post...forgive my ramblings.

I was a scrapbooker long before the Internet.  Back then we ordered double-prints (in case you ruined one).  We cut and pasted our photos at a regular Friday night crop (short for "cropping" our photos into all sorts of weird shapes traced by real pens and cut out with real scissors).  We threw up sprinkled stickers all over the page.  We hand-drew our titles with markers.  Printed paper?  What was that?  Colored cardstock came pre-cut into strips and triangles.  Our journaling was handwritten.

Fast forward, just a couple of years, and there was an explosion of local, privately-owned scrapbook stores.  I think there were eight or nine within a 30-minute drive, half of which were about 10 minutes away.  God, how I loved those stores.  I loved to touch & feel the product as I hand selected each piece for my personal scrapbook(s).  I loved the smell of the paper (equally as much as a real bookstore).  I'd visit at least one every week.  All the store owners knew me.  These stores were the hub of it all, where you could be sure to find a group of like-minded souls congregated on a Friday night (think quilting bee). Oh...and the classes!  I was a regular.  I wanted to learn as much as I could and soak up all the creativity I could hold.

Things are different now.  Nearly all of my dearly loved, independently-owned stores are gone.  I was so in love with the notion of running my own store, that I begged Bill to take out a second mortgage on our home and let me buy a store from a lady who was moving out of state (boy, I'm glad he said no!  I think he may have said something like..."Are you Crazy?"). We now have a big box chain store (who single-handedly ran all the independents out of business).  Besides the big two craft stores, every other store now sells scrapbook supplies.  You can find scrapbook supplies at the local grocery store, the card store, and every office supply store.  And, of course, now we have the Internet...and digital scrapbooking...and online retailers and…

Traditional scrapbookers (with real photos & paper) digital, or hybrid, are all likely to spend a good amount of time on the Internet, our "go-to" place for ideas and maybe even shopping.  Going out on a limb here, but I think the computer is now considered the #1 tool for today's memory keeper (so long scissors...). From sharing digital photos on Facebook to reading the latest edition of my favorite scrapbook magazine or idea book online, memory keeping and the Internet are synonymous for me.  Even the term "scrapbooker" may fade in time as really we are all just memory keepers.  In fact...this pains me to say...a real hold-in-your-hands scrapbook may soon become obsolete...

I don't believe the shift from in-person scrapbooking to a world inside a small electric box has eliminated the warmth and connections I've found (and hold dear) through scrapbooking.  I think the opposite has occurred.  The online scrapbooking community is strong, vibrant, and thriving.  I have found and befriended many like-minded souls in places I’ve only dreamed of traveling, sharing stories about life and creativity.  Through a common hobby, we communicate through words and images, we can see others and their lives, and be truly seen ourselves, in ways that break down barriers and prejudices.

I can access inspiration when I need it and learn new skills on demand.  I can ask for help and have answers within seconds, not just from search engines anymore, but from real people.   If you need to be "shown how to do it," just ask.  Sure, they may not be Hollywood-quality videos, but they come from passionate, like-minded individuals.  And...they are brilliant.

The Internet has facilitated many scrapbook communities that are very valuable to me personally. It has allowed me to reach out and touch someone and connect with others that share my love of scrapbooking...effortlessly.

My mom kept all of our family photos in a hat box; just dumped in there haphazardly.  We were lucky if there was a penciled note or date on the backside. I wish she had taken more time and made scrapbooks.  I only hope that my kids will recognize the value of these treasures in years to come.  My goal is to make sure that my computer does not turn into a hatbox...

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Project Life - Weeks 10 & 11

I am publicly giving up the notion that I can ever be caught up.  Just isn't gonna happen.  I am freeing myself from the pressure of deadlines.  Oh, I feel better already! 

Here's Week 10:

...and Week 11:

Nothing special to note..however I am still adding several design cuts made with my Silhouette machine.  The heart paw print is hand cut from printed scrapbook paper.   I have decided to mount some of my embellishments on the outside of the page protector instead of on the photo (never know what may/not happen to the photos in the future, but I want to preserve their integrity).

I'm beginning to see a couple of trends:
  1. Lots of Gracie pics.  She's such a willing subject.
  2. I do like to color coordinate!
I think that wherever we are in the PL journey, is the right place to be.  In case you're wondering, this is where I'm at:

Completed & Shared: Weeks 1-11
Completed & Not Shared:
Journaling: through Week 11
To Fill: Weeks 12,& 13
Pictures to Print: Weeks 12 &13
I'm Busy Living Week:  14

Done & documented!  Moving on...

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Big Reveal

Last week, I announced my new "title" over at Let's Scrap.  It is awesome to be surfing the site, and see the DT after my name.  I'm so proud of myself...I could just "bust my buttons."

To apply for the DT, the challenge was to create a layout based on this sketch:

I like recipes.  Easy to follow and no brain damage.  I tend to be a stick-to-it kinda girl.  On occasion, however, I find that I might not have a certain ingredient, or I may have learned a shortcut, or I may have to make a substitution, and sometimes my measurements tend to be off. 

Any hoo, the above recipe produced this creation:

The pictures for the layout are from 2010...when the original iPad was first released.  Bill wanted one so bad for his birthday.  When the kids and I made it happen, he was instantly obsessed over it.  Still is to this day...but that's enough about Bill. 

The details:
  • I followed the photo placement exactly 
  • I thought all of those flowered circles could easily be apples (yes...THE i-apples)
  • Because I had used busy patterned paper (a different one for the right & left), it was easy to fake the look of different paper in all of the right locations. 
  • The chevron borders across both pages were hand cut from patterned heavy-weight paper
  • The iPad logo and the i-apples were all downloaded from the internet and printed on white cardstock.  They were all hand cut as well.
  • The embellishments in the lower left coorner were layered using pop dots
  • The buttons were threaded with twine before they were adhered
  • The products I used: was good enough to get me on the team.