Wednesday, December 19, 2012

AEI♥U Challenge (Card 4)

Here is my fourth card in Avery Elle's AEI♥U Challenge and this time I think I finally met the brief- to create a project that sums up your personal paper crafting style.  I started out with a white card base and added some bright yellow polka-dot patterned paper.  Then I stamped the Polaroid frame from "Picture It"- once on white and then again on some more yellow paper.  I cut the middle out of the yellow piece and adhered that to the middle.  I stamped an owl and added some googly eyes.  Then I stamped the "Comment: Like" and the "I forgot" from "Picture It" and finally the "Oh Snap" speech bubble from the same set in some dark red ink, cut it out and popped it up on some foam dots.  I decided to also add some red colouring to the owl with a  marker.

Now we're talking!  Clean and simple with nice bright colours- I think my stamping mojo is back :-)

AEI♥U Challenge (Card 3)

My third card in Avery Elle's AEI♥U Challenge features stamps from the "Fanfare" set.  I love the border stamp in this set because you can make a gorgeous background with it.  I've used this stamp many times before to make rainbows of bright colours on my cards.  This time I decided to tone it down and create a wedding card using Blushing Bride, Perfect Plum and Regal Rose inks and Perfect Plum, Sahara Sand and Whisper White cardstocks all from Stampin' Up.  A bit of twine and some pearls finishes off the card.  This is getting much closer to a card that best represents my usual style :-)

Getting happier, but not quite there yet...stay tuned for Card 4 :-)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

AEI♥U Challenge (Card 2)

For my next card in Avery Elle's AEI♥U Challenge I decided to use some banners from "To the Point" and some patterned papers from Kaisercraft.  I simply layered two PP's on a white card base, stamped three banners in dark brown chalk ink on some more PP's before cutting them out, stamped my sentiment, punched some small holes and threaded my bakers twine through.  Easy peasy, and although I quite like the card, I still don't feel it best represents my usual style.

Back soon with Card 3......

AEI♥U Challenge (Card 1)

I love Avery Elle Stamps and I have seven sets of their awesome clear stamps.  They suit my mostly CAS style and my love for vibrant colour.  The AEI♥U challenge for the month is to create a project that sums up your personal paper crafting style.  Well I just said my style was CAS with vibrant colour but as I sat down to create some cards for this challenge, I actually had  trouble coming up with designs in my own style!  Call it festive brain-block I s'pose LOL!  

I love kraft so for my first card I started out with a kraft card base and stamped the "HELLO you are" label from the "Hello" set in Crumb Cake ink to make a background. This set has some cool words which I stamped in the labels. Then I took a banner stamp from the "To the Point" set and stamped that in Raspberry Ripple ink and a "Thanks" sentiment that I gratefully received with one of my orders in black ink.  Some machine stitching finished this card. 

I wasn't very happy with this card, so I will be back soon to share my next attempt.....

Monday, December 17, 2012

Project Life Week 50

Week 50! Wow, really?  School holidays are well under way for us and this week we had something on every day except Sunday.  On Saturday we went to a birthday party at Scitech and I will definitely keep them in mind for our future parties- it was great!  This week I pulled out some very old Kaisercraft scraps and matching stickers and the page came together very quickly.  For 2013, I think I will stick to much the same game-plan with days-of-the-week journalling cards and some typed strip journalling on the photos.  I have subscribed to the Studio Calico PL kit...HELLO! How could I not? Two of my favourite things in the world SC + PL = PERFECTION! So until I see what is in the first kit, I am not sure if or how I will change things.  One thing I do want to do is to type a lot more of my journalling so I might have to stock up on some more digital cards to type onto in Photoshop before printing.  Cathy Zielske has some terrific videos on her blog for using digital elements in hybrid scrapbooking.  Anyhoo, that's me just thinking "out loud"....
here's Week 50....

Friday, December 14, 2012

Thoughts and Tips on Project Life

I LOVE Project Life.  I wasn't sure I would even like it, much less love it.  I had doubts about whether I could keep up and whether I would ditch the whole thing a couple of months into it.  But I love it and I HAVE kept up to date.  

Why do I love it?  Well, I'm a scrapbooker who has always told the little stories of daily life.  Sure, I scrapbook the birthdays, all the kids' firsts, Christmas etc, but it's the everyday stories that are more important to me- the details of our lives that would otherwise be forgotten. Scrapbooking is more about the stories and less about the pretty papers and embellishments for me. This is why I was always going to love Project Life- it's a perfect fit for me.

As I near the end of my first full year of Project Life, I wanted to share with you some of my thoughts on Project Life and a handful of tips that have kept me on track in my weekly documentation of our daily lives. You might be thinking about starting it in 2013, you might have started it and not continued with it in 2012 for whatever reason, or you might be a non-scrapbooker who still wants to document your stories but doesn't know how.

First of all, if you are a newbie, check out Becky Higgins' explanation on her official site.  

Then, get your supplies.  If you are in Australia and you want to use a kit, go to Craft House and get all your gear.  I use the "A Design" page protectors all the way through my PL album, but there are lots of different styles to choose from.  

I don't use a kit- I use a mixture of bits and pieces from my overflowing stash of supplies and digital elements that I download and print.  Check out the many many Pinterest Project Life boards for inspiration and links to journalling cards and other downloadable stuff.  You can add to your kit, change it or design elements yourself digitally or with stamps as you go. Then you will need an album (or two).  I use a plain black Printblocks D-ring album and for 2012 I filled two of them.

Set aside a time in your weekly schedule for Project Life and stick to it.  For example, I choose and edit my photos Sunday afternoon or evening and save them on a USB stick.  After I drop-off Master 6 at school on Monday morning, I go straight to Big W for printing.  Since I usually get there at around 8.30am, it takes about 10-15 minutes for them to be ready.  Then during Master 2's nap I complete my spread for the week. DONE!  This is part of our weekly routine as important as any of our other activities and because I treat it as a "standing appointment" it gets done.....every week....without fail.

I know many Project Lifer's who print at home, and that's good too.  I think if you add up the money spent on paper/ink etc vs cost of doing it at a lab/time out of your day, it works out about even.  I have a colour laser printer and it just doesn't print photos well at all.  I would love a dedicated photo printer but can't justify it when my system works fine for me.

You need to keep some kind of journal through the week.  It might be your day-planner or just a notebook. I use my Filofax diary to make little notes and check my own Facebook posts for the week for anything else of interest.  You can get apps for your phone that prompt you to make some notes- Dayone is a popular iPhone app and I'm sure there are similar apps available for Android.

If you get organised NOW and get started on January 1 2013, you can do this.  I have loved what I've done in 2012 and will be going again in 2013.......who's going to join me?

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Project Life Week 49

Week 49 already?!  How did that happen?  It was a week filled with end-of-year activities at school and it whizzed by in a bit of a blur.....

Since the week was filled with Christmas festivities, I used papers from an old Basic Grey Christmas line to break up the photos and journalling cards :-)

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Boys Live Here

I am so pleased to share another scrapbooking layout with you- I just don't get to scrap as much as I would like to!  I was itching to use my Silhouette Cameo to make a page title and some elements and I love this photo capturing a little piece of what living with little boys looks like.

I used papers and a button from Studio Calico's Take Note Collection, a stamp set from American Crafts, some washi tape, some Thickers and a simple office clip.  But the really fun part was being able to take any font on my computer and cut letters with my Silhouette.  I cut letters and arrows from both patterned paper and from vellum- so much fun!

I just love being able to cut fonts with my Silhouette....should stop me buying so many Thickers.....hmmmmm nope, probably not LOL!

Monday, December 10, 2012

CASE Study Challenge #120

Here is the inspiration card made by Windy Robinson over at the CASE Study Challenge blog this week. 

I was immediately drawn to the colours and florals in the patterned paper and in the centre.  I decided to do some watercolouring with distress inks and put my flowers off to the side making room for my sentiment to sit in the centre of the die-cut doily.  Here is what I came up with.....

This was my first time playing at Case Study Challenge, and I'll be sure to play along again :-)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Just Add Ink #147

This week at Just Add Ink the theme is "Just Add Balloons", and I immediately thought of the "Up, Up and Away" set from Stampin' Up.  It's a pretty straightforward card with Red, Blue, Black and White, a bit of patterned paper, some embossing, and of course, some stamping.  

After having some dramas with my workspace lamp and getting replacement bulbs for it, I bought one of these Naturalight Hobby Lamps from Officeworks this morning and it's amazing.  I thought the lamp I had was pretty good, but this baby lights up my work space so beautifully.

If you are a crafter you will appreciate how important great lighting is, and I am so glad I decided to invest in a new lamp!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

I Got A New Toy!

A little while ago Studio Calico were offering an an awesome deal on this magnificent device.....
...yes, I bought a Silhouette Cameo and although I haven't had a lot of time to play, I LOVE IT!  I have the original Cricut and it wasn't getting a lot of use(ok, none) because I found it too restrictive.  I will admit to purchasing an $80 cartridge just so I could cut scalloped circles and even then, I couldn't cut the sizes I really wanted to.  Having a 6" x 12" cutting mat was frustrating and not being able to manipulate the cut files was excruciatingly annoying.  I first saw the Silhouette machines about two years ago and knew straight away that I would eventually have one.  

I found the machine and software really easy to set up and I was buying images from the online shop directly from the software within minutes.  And the best part?  There was a Sale on so all my images were half price! But really, at around 99 cents for most images, they are cheap-as-chips anyway :-)

My first play session resulted in these.....

That large owl is actually a large gift card that opens- cool huh?  I love that I could cut all the individual pieces from scraps because you know exactly whereabouts on the cutting mat the image will be cut. I'm also very impressed with how the machine manages really intricate cuts. I'm so excited to have my new toy and I will share some more projects when I get more time to play :-)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Project Life Week 48

Things have been a bit quiet here on the blog, but that usually means it's crazy-busy in real life doesn't it?!  Master 6 finishes school for the year tomorrow so it's been a mad rush to get the last of the Christmas shopping done, as many orders completed as possible and just generally get organised for the end-of-year activities and parties that are happening.  Today was a scorcher in Perth and Master 2 and I headed to Craft Group this morning.  After we had our usual crafting session we had our Christmas Party.  Then it was a dash to Master 6's school for the Christmas Carols concert which had been rescheduled twice due to the threat of storms. 

Week 48 was our second week of Hubs break at home and he kept himself busy doing some much-needed work outside and in the garden.  Master 2 loves being outside and was very happy to be Daddy's Little Helper.  Master 6 had a friend stay for a sleepover for the first time and I'm pleased to say it went smoothly, but after a late night and early morning, by Sunday afternoon they'd had enough of each other!

This week I used some older American Crafts papers from my stash and no embellishments other than my usual punched border accents.  I like to keep it pretty simple with PL- the everyday stories are what matters most to me for this type of scrapbooking.  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Project Life Week 47

Hubs is home from China so the week included lots of father-son type activities including a camp-out in the backyard.  I used up some old SEI scrapbooking papers and some freebie journalling cards I found via Pinterest.  I printed some of the photos at 1.5" x 3" as well as my usual 3" x 4" and 6" x 4" just to fit more photos in and still have room for some "white space".  Visually it looks better to have some "white space" and I try to do this in my regular scrapbooking and cardmaking as well.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Just Add Ink #145

The challenge this week at Just Add Ink is a sketch challenge.  

I made this card for Holiday Card Workshop Day 9 featuring Sentiment Stamps and it's layout was inspired by this JAI sketch.

Kristina used similar colours and the same sentiment and "faux metal"  embossing technique in the class and I was keen to give it a go.  I took a piece of scrap cardstock and applied four layers of silver embossing powder.  Then I inked up my sentiment (from Technique Tuesday) with Stazon before applying a fifth layer of powder   As soon as it had melted, I stamped the sentiment being sure to push it into the melted embossing powder.  The addition of black ink to the stamp ensured the sentiment was easier to read than if it had been applied without ink.  I then trimmed it down to size, rounded the corners and popped it on top of some glittery washi tape strips.  This was a fun technique but I need more practice to get a really neat and finished end result.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Day 8

Day 8 at Holiday Card Workshop was all about Cards Using Dies.  I have the Ornament Keepsakes stamp and die set from Stampin' Up which I just love for Christmas cards.  For the card on the right, I heat embossed some silver glitter onto some white cardstock before die cutting it, and for the card on the left, I stamped directly onto the cardstock and just diecut a little stamped and embossed circle for interest on the middle ornament.  Some rhinestones on both cards added a necessary touch of bling.  

I love stamp+die combination sets and it's great to see so many manufacturers offering these now.  Some of my favourites are from Stampin' Up , Hero Arts and Papertrey Ink

Friday, November 23, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Day 7

You've probably realised that this class is over now, but I haven't been keeping up with sharing my homework.....naughty me.....but here is Day 7's card and this class focussed on Reverse Stamps.  I bought this stamp from Hero Arts/Basic Grey when I did the "Stretch Your Stamps" class and I'll admit I haven't used it since.  So, for this card I stamped the reverse stamp in black stazon on white cardstock and then coloured in the negative parts with markers.  I then stamped a greeting from this Hero Arts clear stamp set on vellum with Versamark and then heat embossed with a bright green Zing embossing powder from American Crafts. I wrapped the vellum round the stamped background piece and adhered it to the back before attaching the whole panel to a white card base.  If I was having a "do-over", I would also slip a little bit of adhesive behind the embossed sentiment just so that the vellum piece sits a bit flatter.

I still don't particularly like reverse stamps- not sure why-, but I can think of a few different ways to use them in future projects.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Project Life Week 46

Week 46 went a little something like this......caused some damage to my car, changed the wheel by myself (with Hubs talking me through it via Skype), Craft Group, Play Group, Swimming Lesson, School Assembly, Stagecoach, Hubs home from China, catching up on chores, filling Made at Number 27 store orders, catching up with friends.......:-)

Sunday, November 18, 2012

JAI #144- Just Add Music & CFC79- Winter Blues

I was inspired by a card on page 9 of the Stampin' Up! Holiday Catalogue that used light blue, dark red and white.  I decided on the colour combo of Bashful Blue, Midnight Muse and Cherry Cobbler to create this Christmas card using the Stampin' Up! Welcome Christmas stamp set and a musical background cling stamp from Hero Arts. 

The music image was stamped in versamark and clear embossed on the Bashful Blue card base, while the cherry cobbler cardstock piece was embossed with a music Cuttlebug embossing folder. 

After I made this card for the "Just Add Music" challenge at Just Add Ink, I noticed that the theme this week at CAS-ual Fridays is "Winter Blues", and was pleased that this card meets the brief for that challenge as well ;-)

The little ones and I have spent the weekend getting used to Daddy's presence in the house again, and also getting used to the moustache he is growing for Movember.  If you would like to donate to this worthy cause for men, or simply find out more about Movember, you can visit his "Mo-space" HERE.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Just Add Ink #143

This week at Just Add Ink it's a colour challenge. 

Now when I first saw these colours together I thought "Ummmmm oookaaaayy" and had absolutely no idea how to balance them and create a card in a style I'm comfortable with.  Then I thought "Hang on- isn't the whole point of these challenges to get me OUT of my comfort zone?"  Anyway, once I started to flip through my stamp sets and think about who I could make a card for, I quickly decided to do a masculine Birthday card.

I'm still not sure about the finished card- I think if I was to get a do-over, I would use the same design but use the colours differently, and also replace the orange and white baker's twine with a button in that space next to the sentiment.

Project Life Week 45

It was another pretty routine week at Number 27 with our normal scheduled activities and a lovely picnic/playdate with friends on Sunday.  What I love about Project Life is that even after a very routine week there are still plenty of photos and stories to be told- stories that represent who we are at this moment in time.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Crazy Love

Scrapbooking is my first papercraft love but I constantly battle to find the time for it.  I like to start and finish a project in one sitting so finding a chunk of time that big is well, you know......LOL! This is probably why I make so many cards ;-)

I love this photo of my boys in the bath.  Although they were born four years apart, they just love playing together and making mischief.  Bathtime is always crazy-time with lot of splashing and giggles.

One of my best tricks for scrapping quickly is to use a sketch or to scrap-lift from a layout I love- either one of my own or a layout by one of the many talented scrappers out there.  I was inspired by this layout by allieH in the Studio Calico gallery.  Her layout featured three small photos but I thought I could adapt aspects of it for my single photo.  I had leftovers from a Studio Calico kit that I knew would work and by the time I added  machine stitching, some stamping and some ink splats my layout became a bit busier than the inspiration layout, but you can see the basic structure is the same.  After pulling out the supplies and getting organised, this layout came together in about half an hour.

My husband works overseas for about 6 weeks at a time, but when he's home I can usually convince him to take the boys on a long outing so I can carve out some scrapping time.  I always make sure I have a bunch of photos edited and printed and ready to go!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Day 6

Day 6 was all about Cards with Inking Techniques and some really clever ideas were showcased.  I decided to take a Christmas image, heat emboss it with black powder and then colour my background with four shades of Distress Inks.  I then flicked pearlised water on the background to create "snow".  It's difficult to see the lovely shine in the photo but it's lovely and subtle in real life.  I stamped/embossed my sentiment directly onto the background but too much of the embossing powder stuck to the distress inks, so I covered up my boo-boo with another piece, stamped and embossed BEFORE colouring with inks ;-)

Before today's class I thought I had seen just about every inking technique, but I learned a few new tips and tricks. I wish there were more hours in the day to try them all.....and I wish I had all the great supplies the girls used!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Neon Christmas

I was recently asked to make some Christmas cards for a customer and the brief was to use neon green, neon pink and navy blue, plus to inject a little bit of humour into the design.  They also had to be on-trend since the recipients are in the design field.  I came up with two designs- one using neon embossing powders, and the other neon cardstocks.

This first card features a trendy chevron background embossed in neon green with a chandelier embossed in pink.

This second card features handcut neon cardstock reindeer and a quirky sentiment.  If my new Cameo had arrived I would have used that to cut them out!

Despite being a little bit overwhelmed initially, I really enjoyed using neon for these.  One of the Bonus Classes in the Holiday Card workshop was about non-traditional colours for Christmas cards and I think neon might fit in that category!

Project Life Week 44

Another pretty routine week here at Number 27.  This week I used some old patterned papers from American Crafts and stuck to my regular format.

I'm starting to think about how to approach Project Life in 2013.  I considered going digital, but I think I'll stick with paper/hybrid.  I usually use papers etc from my stash but with so many manufacturers bringing out lines specifically for Project Lifers I may decide to purchase one of those great lines and use it throughout the album.  Still some time to decide.......

Monday, November 5, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Days 4 & 5

Day 4 was all about cards featuring Outline Stamps.  There were some great colouring  techniques demonstrated including colouring with Distress Inks and Copic markers.  I decided to colour my black-embossed ornaments with distress inks.  I just simply "smooched" my inkpads onto an acrylic block and then picked up the colour with my waterbrush. 

Day 5 of class was about cards using Stamp+Die Combos.  I used an ornament stamp+die set from Stampin' Up and kept this card very clean and simple.  Old Olive and Cherry Cobbler are classic Christmas colours and I combined them with Very Vanilla and Crumb Cake since I already had those out from the previous card.
I am quite addicted to stamp+die combo sets - it just makes my cards so much neater and more polished looking.  I prefer to stamp first and cut second- it's easy to position the die around the stamped image and hold it in place with some washi tape.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

CFC 77

The challenge this week at CAS-ual Fridays is to create a Clean & Simple Masculine Card.  I decided to create a birthday card using black/white/orange and to make a bold background using Avery Elle stamps.


We are having some dreadfully wet weather here at the moment and it is very difficult to get good photographs even right by the window.  Oh well, we do need the rain and it won't be long before we're complaining that it's too hot!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Days 2 & 3

Day 2 of Holiday Card Workshop was all about background stamps.  I loved Jennifer's card that featured nested die-cuts and I was also inspired by her colour scheme.  I diecut the ornament first, both from my kraft panel and the pool cardstock, then nested the pool diecut in the negative space in the kraft.  Then I stamped my Lattice background stamp in Versamark Ink and embossed with white embossing powder.  I  adhered the pool piece to the inside of the card so when the card is closed, it sits inside the kraft piece.  A few other bits and pieces finished the card off.

Day 3 of Class was all about cards with dry embossing.  I loved Kristina's card where she made her own score lines to form a plaid pattern and then highlighted the pattern with distress inks.  I decided to use an embossing folder instead and then coloured my white cardstock with Festive Berries Distress Ink.  I white embossed the sentiment on white cardstock before applying the same ink. I was also inspired by Kristina's card layout but I moved things around a little bit.

This afternoon we collected Master 6's new spectacles.  He (thankfully) chose a really trendy pair and here's a photo I took the day of his eye examination earlier this week, just after he'd made his final decision to get this pair.

I hope you are all having a great weekend.  I'll be back to share some more cards from Holiday Card Class just as soon as I get caught up!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Project Life Weeks 42 & 43

Week 42 was a pretty routine week with nothing special going on.  Strangely enough, those are the weeks I love the most ;-)

Week 43 was quite warm so we got outdoors with walks to the park and a trip to the Water Playground. 


I love that Project Life captures these everyday moments that wouldn't normally feature in a regular scrapbooking layout.  Master 6 actually prefers looking through PL pages over scrapbooking albums!

Just Add Ink #142

It's time for a sketch challenge at Just Add Ink this week.  As soon as I saw the sketch I knew I wanted to use patterned papers and a stamped border.

I didn't use any embellishments in the top right corner, but decided instead to machine stitch around the stamped panel and the patterned paper mat.  The little boy stamp and patterned papers are from Stampin' Up and the stamped zig-zag border is from Neat and Tangled.  Apologies for the photo quality- it was a pretty dull day today!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Holiday Card Workshop Day 1

I've started another class at Online Card Classes and this one is called Holiday Card Workshop.  The delightful and talented duo of Kristina Werner and Jennifer McGuire have prepared what looks to be another fantastic class and it looks like a lot of my classmates from previous classes have enrolled again.  Day 1 went live last night (Perth time) and Kristina featured a 3x3 inch gift card and she demonstrated colouring with both coloured pencils and with Copics.  I was inspired to make my own little gift card and coloured my gingerbread man with coloured pencils.  I blended my shades with baby oil- many stampers use Gamsol- and masked off the hat before stamping my little man.  Just wish I'd stamped him a little higher to give the hat a better fit!

Jennifer shared some terrific ideas for creating a cheat-sheet when mass producing stamped backgrounds and she also did some clever masking on her card.  The result was a lovely card that looked way more complicated than it was.  I hope to try this out soon.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

CFC 76

The challenge at CAS-ual Fridays this week is to use Kraft.  I love using Kraft in both my scrapbooking and cardmaking, but I don't usually stamp straight onto it- crazy huh?  I wanted to use the "Bright Days" stamp set from Avery Elle and was inspired by a card by Heather Campbell where she used lots of bright colours for the rays of her sun.  I've used the same layout as Heather but narrowed my colours down to the five new 2012-2013 In Colours from Stampin' Up.

The cloud is stamped with a border stamp from Avery Elle's "Fanfare" set and die-cut with a cloud die from MFT.  A little scrap piece of twine I found on my desk finished off the card.  I love the bright colours against the neutral of the Kraft and I think I'll try it again soon :-)

Just Add Ink #141

It's a colour challenge this week at Just Add Ink. 

I usually reach for  brighter colours so these soft hues were certainly a challenge for me.  The Woodgrain embossing folder and Papillon Potpourri stamp set made another appearance- they keep popping up in my cards lately :-)

Here's a closer look at the Butterfly.  I stamped it first on the Vanilla circle, then punched it out of patterned paper, then stamped and punched it again from Wisteria Wonder cardstock before layering them together and gently separating their wings.  I love this simple way to add dimension.

Despite the challenges I faced with these colours, I really enjoyed trying something new!