Thursday, January 22, 2015


OK, I can't believe I'm posting this horrible photo of me in my pajamas at like 6am on a weekend, just having woken up and not even brushing my nappy bedhead hair! I guess that's just how cute I think Natalie is when she takes a bath! She's been asking for one lately by pulling her shirt up and saying "nakey baby, bath" while standing in front of the bath tub - who am I to argue with that!?

This may seem like a stretch, but I started by printing my photos and using this layout by Nicole Samuels as my inspiration! I loved the feel of her layout, especially the 3 photos at the bottom and the 2 pieces of paper in the background (obviously).

When I started picking papers for the layout, I suddenly realized I really wanted to use those acetate fruit shapes from this month's Far Far Away kit by Studio Calico to make the two pieces of background paper come together. I almost decided to change my photos and try to find something else that would fit better when I came up with the title, and used the big white alpha that came as part of the Ivy Tower add on kit. I outlined the letters in pen to make them stand out and also to match the fruit shapes. I also used the Mia Alpha stamp set from Studio Calico and inked each letter twice over with Versamark ink to make the rest of the title. This was a fun, easy one, and since I already made a few layouts with this kit, it was much easier to convince myself to use up those fruit shapes all in one shot!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Jingle, Jingle

So on Saturday, Chris took Natalie out to the store and left with me a short time period that I could sit down at my scrap table, but I had just finished the last layout earlier in the day and wasn't sure what to work on. It was one of those times when I really wanted to make something, so I sat down without any ideas and just started grabbing some papers to look at. Next thing I knew I had the start of a Christmas looking layout with any pictures. Then I thought of a story I really want to scrap about, so added a title.

Now this will sort of make sense why I am scrapping a Christmas layout in January. When Christmas music started coming on the radio last month, Natalie heard the song "Jingle Bell Rock" and when it was over she hopped out of my lap, walked over and pointed to the radio/cd player, "requesting" me to turn it on again. I figured, no harm, I will get my old CD and put it on. Ummm... a month later I am regretting that fateful day I didn't say no to this one little request. Now whenever she wants to hear music, she points and says "Jingle, Jingle!" and still says it even if you try to put a different song on! Even as the song is ending, she'll say "Jingle, Jingle!" till you get up and put the song back on (no repeat button on our CD player [sad face]). I showed her a video on my phone of her and Dada dancing, and that song was in the background, and when the song is over in the video, she says "Jingle, Jingle!" and makes me restart to video so the song is back on! Oh well, I'm glad I've taught her "no" to just about everything else haha!

So it wasn't all random that I ended up with a Christmas layout. When I sat down I thought to myself, maybe I'll make a Christmas card, ala Natalie Elphinstone who made 1 Christmas card with every Studio Calico kit for the past year, leaving her with 12 beautiful and unique Christmas cards! But once I pulled the papers, they started to look great as a Christmas layout, and since I'd rather make a layout than a card, I went with that! I used mostly the Ivy Tower add-on kit to the Far Far Away kit. I purchased the black alpha thickers at one of the LSS and only had 1 "L" so I cut up a 7 and an "F" to create my own L for the second Jingle word!

Other than wanting to do more "story first" layouts this year, my other "scrappy resolution" or intention more like, is to be diligent about putting all journaling and the date or dates on the front of my layouts. As much as I have enjoyed the flexibility of adding leftover journaling to the back, I realize that 1. people aren't going to be pulling my layouts out of the page protectors to check for or read the rest of my journaling. 2. I don't even feel like pulling out my layout to do this. It's a pain and so much easier when reading it to just have it all out there on the front. I will leave hidden journaling only for private stories.

So there you have it, a nice Christmas layout in January. It's like driving around seeing people still turn on their Christmas lights they left up... but hopefully not that crazy :)

Monday, January 19, 2015

Just Like Her Dada

Part of my "scrappy resolution" or intention this year is to do more "story first" layouts, so I don't end up with a whole bunch of layouts that look nice but have no meaning. So when I didn't have any photos printed up yet, but wanted to work on a layout, I started by reading over the few stories I wanted to scrap and decided on this story about my daughter, who talks in her sleep just like her Dada! Since I didn't have a specific photo for this story, I found this recent one in my phone of her yawning and thought that would work! Now I could make a layout with a cute photo and have a story to go with it, perfect!

I used a new Sketch Template from Simple Scrapper's Premium Membership and just loved it! It was 8.5x11, so I decided I would keep it 8.5x11 and add the page to Chris' ongoing album!

I used some of the softer, pretty papers from the main Far Far Away scrapbook kit by Studio Calico - and it helped that I had the digital papers to first drop into the layered templates that are part of the monthly sketch templates from Simple Scrapper. I enjoy working with the layered templates first to get a general feel how my layout will look with the photos dropped in! I used of the thin wood veneer diamonds to fill the space next to the picture, and ended up liking how it sort of points to the picture. I used the rubber alpha from the Walden kit because I wanted a nice soft gray to go with the colors. Thanks for stopping by!

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

My Scrapbook Story

For the first time in the 10+ years that I have been scrapbooking, I finally made a page about it! Why it's important to me, what it means to me etc. and lo and behold I happened upon my title for the page! I recently participated in the Start Fresh event over at the Simple Scrapper (included with the membership), and loved it - from the planner to the workbook, the daily audio guides and ideas, and even the community. What surprised me on Day 1 was when Jennifer (Wilson) said we would be completing a layout over the next 5 days. I thought, now is as good a time as any!

Originally, I picked this layout by Jill as my inspiration, I just loved the layers and typing.

In the end though, I knew I had way too much journaling, and I wanted to showcase just a few papers. I also am not very good at layering. I had gathered some supplies for this layout, as in, I knew I wanted to use the Ivy Tower add-on kit from Studio Calico this month haha! And then as I was picking papers to do the layers, I realized I liked exactly what I had in my hands and laid them down. I painted my title in my version of brush script with black goache paint and then cut my strips from left to right 2.25", 2.5", 8" (the hello paper so it would stretch all the way underneath the vellum), and vellum at 6". I layered them a little on top of each other to give the impression of overlapping instead of laying them flat side by side. And that's pretty much it - I used the Traveling Typewriter font and printed on vellum.


Luckily if you've missed out on the awesome Simple Scrapper Start Fresh event (a scrapbook planning e-course), then I suggest you take advantage of this offer to purchase it separately from the membership! I love the membership because it includes this event PLUS the amazing Stash Bash event (which sounds like there may be a mini stash bash in February, plus the big one this July), on top of the monthly membership goodies - it's an awesome value!

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Love layout and a FREE file for cutting + tutorial!

What's wrong with a green Christmas? This was the day after - we got to go for a walk while Chris was still home for Christmas break, so nice!!

I used a Sketch Template from Simple Scrapper's Premium Membership and just LOVED this one, but needed to change a couple things to make it work for me.

So I started by making the "Love" title myself and turning it into a cut file to cut out of white paper to match the background. (see below for quick tutorial how I did this, as well as the title as a jpg for free download!) I put my three strips of paper down approximately where they would go and traced the top portion of the title with pencil then hand cut with scissors a little above the pencil marks to leave some extra space above the title. I also die cut some sketchy hearts in all different sizes in 3 card stock colors and just played around with filling in the top area with them till I got them how I wanted them, then picked up each one and adhered with my Martha Stewart glue pen! Phew! Other than that I stuck pretty closely to the sketch template and used Studio Calico's Far Far Away scrapbook kit to complete it.

Click here!
Right-click and you can download it :)

Beginner tutorial for Silhouette Cameo (how to turn image into cut file):
Open your Silhouette software, this is what you'll see:

Open the file you want to trace, and make sure to select "All Files" from the file type dropdown:

When you open it, it will open huge and also have a warning sign about the resolution, but unless you plan to cut that large, you can ignore that and resize to about where you want it.

(to resize: select the image by clicking on it, then grabbing one of the corners to resize and keep the proportions).

Here's the crux of tutorial:
1. Click the tracing tool
2. Click "Select trace area"
3. Make a box around the image
4. Uncheck "high pass filter"
5. Click "trace"
Then you can remove the original image by selecting it and deleting it, and you are left with your cut file!

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Natalie's First Snowfall

It was unexpected. We were walking into the store on New Years' Eve to get some snacks and I was carrying Natalie when I realized she was just so amazed and amused by the falling snow! She was laughing and squealing with delight, and kept reaching up trying to reach the snow! When a snowflake landed on her face, she was surprised and declared "water!" and it was too cute not to stop in the freezing cold and get a couple pictures!

I started the layout by using a Sketch Template from Simple Scrapper's Premium Membership, but veered from it once I decided to do a big title.

To do the title, I first wrote it out and tried to make it a "clean" brush script so that it wouldn't have too many jagged edges when I went to cut it. I photographed it and turned it into a digital print and then got it into my Silhouette software and sized it. I actually cut it into that white background paper so I could try different papers and see which one looked best. Glad I did too because that rose print from Studio Calico's Park Ave kit wasn't my first choice, but as soon as I backed it, it looked perfect!

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Monday, January 12, 2015

A Night Out

This photo was taken at Chris' company holiday party, where we finally got a night out to ourselves, so it was also like a nice date! I decided to make the journaling a thank you letter format to Chris for working hard and allowing me to be a stay at home mom. I truly appreciate his willingness, support, and hard work!

I used another Sketch Template and Story Starter from Simple Scrapper's Premium Membership for this one, and had the perfect papers from last month's Park Ave kit by Studio Calico!

I also added a rubber banner from Ali Edwards' December Daily kit that balanced out the title and added a little something to it. The chipboard stars from the Waldorf Add-on kit were a nice bonus too.

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Hello Today

My mom, stepdad, and I took Natalie to the farm last fall and she was just being so sweet. She was so gentle petting the goats and looking for me to tell her that she could pet them, I just wanted to capture some of her personality traits.

I finally got a chance to use an awesome sketch template from the Simple Scrapper's Premium membership archives. Loved this one!

I decided to grab some older products for this one, starting with some papers from the Bluegrass Farm kit by Studio Calico, because I knew they'd go well with the photo. I found some fairly neutral/white papers to journal on so they'd stand out some and used a Faber Castell soft brush pen to add to my journaling a little bit.

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

You Are My Fave

I'm back with some layouts to share over the next few days! I hope to keep up a little better this year, and update at least once a week with what I've worked on. Anyway, I had this cute photo of Natalie in her winter gear that I couldn't resist adding to her scrapbook!

I didn't really have a story for this photo, so I used a Story Starter from Simple Scrapper's Premium Membership to add my journaling. (I finished on the back to write about how much I appreciate how my husband "invites" us to hang out with him whenever he has things to do, no matter how "boring" it is.) I also used an older sketch template from Simple Scrapper as well - I flipped it on its side to work with my vertical photo!

I used Studio Calico's Park Ave kit, as well as the Waldorf Add-on kit, that is quite possibly my favorite add-on kit... in recent memory? I'm scared to say of all time, but anyway, that polar bear stamp was too adorable not to use, and I really loved how Catherine Davis used the digital stamp version to make her background on this layout!

The Premium Membership at Simple Scrapper provides skills and shortcuts to help you simplify and find more meaning in your memory keeping.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Digitizing my word art

So I've played with word art before but hadn't yet ever printed it out yet. I wanted to use this verse I read yesterday to make a card and figured it would be a good time to try this out! Also I figured it would look better if I shrank the art down and made it tighter. Here's my original verse, painted with goache paint in Jet Black onto drawing paper (this was not even close to my first attempt):

After I got it into digital form (I just used a photo I took of it and edited it in Photoshop Elements 12), I cropped it to 4.25x5.5 inches to fit a card and printed first on white paper (will prob hang this in my scrap space or use as a bookmark) then printed it on patterned paper for a card!

Finally, I made the background transparent with the magic eraser and laid it on top of one of a piece of digital paper from Studio Calico for next month's kit! I changed the color of the brush script and really love how that turned out!

In conclusion it was really fun to do and try! Also as a side note, I took the Life Scripted class with brush script expert Kal Barteski awhile back but ended up using a slightly different technique to come up with this, as I found I want to make it closer to my own handwriting and style!