Thursday, May 31, 2012
Yeah, that’s the moment that inspired this page. I just love this picture. Sometimes, I think the picture and a simple title tells the whole store, and here it did. You Are Charming.
Supplies: Echo Park (paper, stickers), American Crafts (cardstock), Studio Calico (veneer chips)
Design Tip: Outline embellishments to make them standout I adhered these alphas directly to the page. They felt lost. I took a fine tip black pen and outlined then which created an anchor and made them bolder, feeling like they were supposed to be there instead of just a mishap.
Price Per Page: $$ ($2-$3 MSRP)
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
I have a great attraction to old things. I love things that are old, from yesteryear, when things were built well. And if it’s wood, well, that is all the better! I think wood is one of the most beautiful things in creation, God’s artistic hand at work in something He allows us to craft into something using our artistic hand. It’s just the perfect blending of God’s art and man’s art. And it makes my heart warm. My favor is more than just admiring someone else’s wood, but our own home is full of wood. We have wood floors throughout the house, our doors and trim is wood. A good part of our wall space is covered in wood cabinetry (because of our very open floorplan). I just love wood. And when we’re out, I love capturing the character of wood with my camera.
This page is for two challenges, first the May Sketch Challenge on Club CK hosted by Ashley, and second the Thinking Through Design challenge to use handstitching. Yup, I like to combine challenges when I stumble upon one(s ) that inspire me.
Supplies: Coredinations (cardstock), My Minds Eye (6x6 paper, chipboard), Papertrey Ink (larger butterfly die), Spellbinders (small butterfly die), Making Memories (chipboard alphas), Cosmo Cricket (small alpha), Tim Holtz (kraft paper), misc (bling & floss – stitching pattern freehanded).
Design Tip: Using lines to create movement The photo of the crates on the right are the same crates as the middle photo. However, I took the photo at an angle which created movement. When I placed the photos on the page, I made sure to put the photo on the right so it looked as if the crates were “leaning into” the page. Had I put them on the left side, they would have looked to lead the eye off the page and created a distraction. But by making the movement go into the page, it keeps your attention on the page and avoids chaos.
Price Per Page: $ (Under $2 per page) The hand stitching allowed me to add a lot of interest to the page while costing only a few pennies. This helped keep the cost of the page very minimal.
As a scrapbooker, I know one of my favorite things is keeping watch out for the new releases by companies, especially my favorite! Echo Park is a company who is constantly releasing new products it seems. It seems they have more new releases than others. For example, I received for my Craft Warehouse design team assignment this Echo Park Note To Self. But the funny thing, even though this assignment was only due on Friday, there have still been several more new releases since this product line. Wowzers, how is a girl to stay on budget?
The simplicity and clean lines of this line really appeal to me. It fits my style well. As well as the prevalence of brown. If I could change one thing, I would swap out some of the blue for more red. But regardless, it was a fun product line to work with. Today I’m going to share a page I created. The focus of this page had to be the view master paper. Not wanting to use the paper as a whole, I decided to make my embellishments out of it. I cut four of the view master flowers (I used punches and my Creative Memories circle cutters), folded each piece into quarters and layered them into a flower.
Supplies: Echo Park (paper, stickers, alphas), Tim Holtz (resist kraft paper), Studio Calico (veneer shapes)
Design Tip: Scale your embellishments to different sizes Make the primary focal embellishment the largest and then scale the consequential ones down so there isn’t a competition of similar sized objects. Objects scaled correctly should automatically tell their “priority” of importance as your eye scans the page.
Price Per Page: $$$ ($3-$4 MSRP)
If you didn’t see this weekend, be sure to scroll down to Friday’s post to find out about my challenge for Operation Write Home!
Saturday, May 26, 2012
Here it is Saturday morning, I’m eating my oatmeal and drinking coffee trying to find the words to write this post. And I have severe case of writer’s block. Or maybe should it be blogger’s block? (I’m not sure, but I do like the alliteration of it). Furthermore, why can I not remember how to properly use an apostrophe in a possessive use? Maybe I should go back to bed. Or find a bigger cup for coffee. Yeah, the latter is probably a better option.
Well, let’s get to it. The reason for Card Week here on ye ol’ blog was to build suspense for a challenge I’m going to throw down! Now, that’s a tv show I wouldn’t mind being on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. I just need a signature dish, a restaurant and a friend to nominate me. However, since it’s not likely to happen, I’ll get off the tangent and back to the subject at card.
It’s Memorial Day Weekend. Despite our more shallow interpretation of it being the unofficial beginning of summer, it’s more than just a three day weekend, hot dogs and hamburgers. It’s a day of remembering our men and women who have died in service for our country, for our freedom. And I am so thankful to all the men and women who serve, have served and who have lost their lives. It is because of their service that I am able to have the freedom I do have. May God Bless them all.
Because of that, I thought it would be the perfect time to kick off this little challenge. I usually do it closer to 4th of July, but this year, I decided to start now and end the 4th of July. This annual event started a few years ago when I wanted a patriotic project for my kids to do. I found Operation Write Home, an organization that collects handmade cards to send to our service members so they can write home to their families. Now I know with all the modern technology a hand written letter doesn’t have the same necessity that it used to have in years past, but I do believe we all still find it very special too have a little handwritten note in our mailbox, imagine if it was from someone serving in a dangerous place.
So, here is the challenge!!
I am encouraging you to make cards for Operation Write Home. There are some basic rules we need to follow such as no glitter (it makes the soldiers visible under night vision). Please read the guidelines before making your cards.
If you want to make some cards, here is what you can do: Mail them to me – (all cards need to be stamped with the OWH logo and tucked. I have already requested a stamp, and I’m willing to do the work to prep them and save the time of the shippers at OWH). You can include envelopes, or not. However, if you do include envelopes, please just send the envelopes along (not cards in them) as I’ll have to remove the cards to stamp them.
I have a prize that will be given to a random winner who sends cards to me for this challenge! Here it is:
BUT, for every 100 cards I receive, I will add in another prize (up to 5 total).
I will pull a winner(s ) on July 5, so if you want to be entered, I need to have received your cards by then. For my mailing information, e-mail me at lovejoypaper (at) hughes (dot) net (remove spaces and replace the words at & dot with symbol).
Friday, May 25, 2012
Well, here we are on Friday! When I started this week, I myself wasn’t even sure if I could do a card a day! But check it out, I have. Yay me!! And I still have one to come tomorrow, as well as the reason I’ve done card week. It’ll be worth checking out.
When my daughter was born, I was so excited to have a girl, and do all the shopping that went along with that. (I could tell a story about when my son was born, but I probably shouldn’t. Aw, why not…..when he was born by c-section, the doctors lifted him up and said “it’s a boy”. I was so disappointed, I desperately wanted a girl I said in a not very nice tone “ugh…I knew it.” Oops!! But I can blame it on drugs, right?? Ah, but that little boy stole my heart the first time I saw him an hour later, and I quickly got over not having my girl. (Of course, when I did have my girl, I was thrilled)). Well, having a girl meant that I could buy pink, dresses and of course pink scrapbooking paper! But I made the mistake that many new scrapbookers make and bought a lot of stuff that I knew just wasn’t my style. I don’t know why I still bought it, aside from the fact that it was cute! And silly me, even several years into scrapbooking I still fell for the trap! But I was reminded that those items can easily be used on my cards, and I set to work to do so.
This card is using some remnant pieces from a My Minds Eye kit about 2 years ago. Items I’d never use on a page, but are perfect for a little girl card! And the letters, yeah, I never use those round little letters either (despite the fact that I *love* the rectangular ones). It all comes together in a fast 5 minute, fabulous stash-busting assortment of cards.
Supplies: My Minds Eye, Pink Paislee
Can’t wait to see you tomorrow, with another card, a challenge and the conclusion of why I’ve been sharing cards all week.
Thursday, May 24, 2012
As I said on Monday, I think a lot of the beautiful cards out there are very technique heavy. And I’m just not a technique girl. Doesn’t mean I don’t know how to do stuff, just that I don’t enjoy it. I’m not very artistic (I can’t color in the lines, really), so I rely much more on the use of my tools. I’m not a big stamper either, mostly because a lot of stamps need colored. (Refer to previous sentence as to why I don’t color LOL). But I did do some stamping techniques on a card that I just loved. I’m a little bit different than most people in that my favorite inks are the chalk inks. I love the opacity that they have. I used that characteristic on this card and I love the results.
I used this card for Mother’s Day and as I remember every time I stamp, I have no sentiment stamps! I really MUST purchase some sentiments. Thus, I went with no sentiment. But hey, it just goes to the simplicity side then.
Supplies: My Minds Eye stamps (lace is Lost & Found 2 (or Stella & Rose – can’t remember), cluster stamp is Follow Your Heart), CTMH chocolate ink, Studio G ink, Paper Trey Ink dies, My Minds Eye brad
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
My stash is full of little odds and ends, pieces that I never use the full collection of. I often look at these unfinished sticker packs and wonder what to do. Sometimes I give them to my kids (they think it’s special when they get something from my stash). Sometimes I hold onto them because I feel guilty that I spent hard earned money on the items. And then I realized, *duh* they are perfect for cards!
Today, I have some cards using some We R Memory Keepers embossed stickers. I didn’t use them on my pages because the embossing created poor adhesion. But I used a few glue dots to stick them to a card, added a stamped sentiment and button and viola! A cute but simple card made in less than 5 minutes. I also inked the edges to give more definition.
Supplies: Cosmo Cricket (patterned paper), WRMK (stickers), CTMH (sentiment stamp), PTI (button), The Twinery (floss)
Tuesday, May 22, 2012
13 years ago today was a very special day. My life forever changed, in a good way. 13 years ago today, I married my husband, my best friend and companion. I won’t even begin to say that the last 13 years have been all wonderful, far from it. There have been many bumps along the way, but they have just brought us here, to where we are now. Happy, content, looking forward to another 13 plus years (hopefully many many plus).
We’ve both been working so many extra hours in the shop (I usually only work a few hours a month, but I’ve been putting in a lot of hours) because of how busy we’ve been (which is really a true blessing in this economy), that we both forgot what day it was! On Sunday he asked me if it was okay if he didn’t do anything for me. I think it was a request for permission, but of course my response was “sure, since I myself forgot our anniversary was this week!” So we are going to celebrate with a romantic trip to the dump (kids in tow) and dinner. But of course, still the dump, no less! LOL
I did manage to make a card though. And with hexagons being all the rage right now, I used my Creative Memories punch I’ve had in my stash forever. It’s rather ironic how many times I almost gave that silly thing away but just couldn’t bring myself to it. I never liked it, unit now! LOL…Now that they’re popular and I can see past the boring Creative Memories old school application of the punch.
I also managed to use up some of my leftover 6x6 paper pad from Pink Paislee Bay Berry Collection from two summers ago. It’s fun to give old paper a new twist with the current shape trends. The 6x6 scale of the paper is perfect for this smaller punhc and card ratio. And of course, my very favorite Papertrey Ink alphabet dies!!
Supplies: Pink Paislee (6x6 paper), Creative Memories hexagon punch, Papertrey Ink dies (alpha & heart)
Monday, May 21, 2012
I’m thinking it’s time to shake things up a little bit on ye ol’ blog. We’re going to have “Card Week” this week. No special cards to write home about (ha, pun intended : ) ). Simple inspiration as well as a few 5 minute cards to come later this week and a few other stash busting ideas. But for now, let’s talk about today!
I’m not the most prolific card maker. I’ve always struggled with that because of my crazy obsession with paper. I realized today the reason I’m not. Most cards I really like are very technique heavy. I’m just not a technique girl. I don’t like to get messy, and I don’t like to spend a lot of time on one thing. I’m pretty straight forward with my tools and supplies, and I’m not nearly artistic enough to do the beautiful coloring many card makers do with the copic markers.
But I do have a card (well, several) to get the week started off. And I have a tip for the day!
Use pretty papers! Ha – I know, that sounds genius right? Let me explain more. You see, in my abundance of paper, I have many papers that I think are just beautiful. This Basic Grey Hello Luscious has been in my stash a while taunting me with it’s beauty, but I have found it’s one of the products that I like, but not a product I use. Might sound crazy, but think about it. How much stuff is in your stash that you really like but have a hard time using? That’s what I mean. I’ve had to learn the difference between what I like and what I use. On the flip side of that though, I’ve found that these papers I like but don’t use are often *perfect* for cards! Yay!!
Supplies: Basic Grey Hello Luscious, Paper Trey Ink flower die, CM circle punch, Paper Trey ink Capital Block Alpha, EK Success American Girl Heart Punch, CTMH black ink, misc cardstock
All this week I’ll be having a card (or more) and I’ll let you know why on Saturday!!
Don’t forget to leave a comment, the contest for one of 5 camera charm necklaces is still open! (and the new chain I’m using is way better than this one!)
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Friday, May 18, 2012
We spend a lot of long *long* days on the road for business. A great blessing of being self-employed and homeschooling is that we always go together (and because it’s at least an hour to get anywhere, it’s a great adventure). When we travel for business, that means the laptop has to travel too. And I’ll admit, I’m slightly on the clumsy side. I’m always afraid I’m going to drop the silly thing, or spill something on it. I knew it needed a home to keep it cozy, safe and warm (because I certainly don’t want it to suffer from hypothermia). Well, this has been on my to-do list for a while, but it just didn’t seem “fun” enough. I finally decided it needed done though. Then I realized, after I finally found the inspiration, I couldn’t make it too feminine because computer on business means hubby has to carry the bag. Phooey…….but fortunately I had this great orange polka-dot. I thought it to be a good compromise.
I pulled measurements off my laptop and made the pattern. I will be working on a tutorial to do this shortly as I plan to make a second bag of similar size.
Supplies: Riley Blake fabric (autumn line), Duck Cloth from Walmart, heavy interfacing and batting, Pattern (self-designed)
Cost: About $22 including all fabrics, interfacing and padding. Not exactly cheap, but cheaper than a purchased computer bag and certainly much prettier!
For Beginner Sewing:
I’ve been questioned a little bit about the process of learning to sew. I wanted to share a few brief thoughts about it, and my journey. I learned on my own, my Mom taught me a few things (like a french seam), but most things I’ve just figured out by trial and error on my own. So here is my list of tips for beginners who desire to learn to sew. (Note: I’m certainly no expert, just some self-taught lackey who wants to encourage others that if I can learn to do it, you can too. Mind over matter).
1) Practice!! Really, the old adage is true: practice, practice, practice. If someone wants to learn to play golf, they don’t just pick up the club and hit a hole-in-one on the first swing. No, there is practice and training involved. Practice running fabric through the machine to learn to control the fabric and stay on the guides for seam allowance. Don’t watch the needle, watch the edge of the fabric at the seam allowance guide. Trim off that piece and try again. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Then do again practicing curves. And again, and again. And just for fun,
once fifteen more times.
2) Pin Yes, these little boogers are for more than just dropping on the floor awaiting their first innocent victim. Buy nice quality pins (I prefer a big colorful head so I can easily find them) and use them. Pin everything together, often and well. Once you are a more skilled seamstress, you won’t have to pin with such a fervor, but to learn, let the pins to the work for you. Yes, I learned this the hard way. I called myself the “lazy seamstress” for a while because I was too lazy to pin. With much frustration, my items never turned out well. Ironically, when I started pinning, the difference was incredible! Pinning well will hopefully make you need the next item less.
3) Seam Ripper Buy a nice, comfortable seam ripper. A fun color helps! Don’t be afraid to use it. The first several things you make, you’ll be needing to rip out the seams often. But don’t be discouraged by that, I have to use this little guy about a tenth of the amount I had to while I was learning.
4) Iron Again, let the iron do the work for you. Pressing seems open, pressing folds in place (especially when working on curves) allows you to sew them together with much more accuracy. This is another thing I learned the hard way through my “lazy seamstress” days. When you embrace the aid of an iron, you have to use the little guy in #3 much less often!
5) Good Quality Fabric While learning, purchase good quality, 100% cotton, stable fabric. Yes, this one might seem to be a bit contradictory because one wouldn’t want to spend $10 a yard on fabric to learn to sew. But trust me, it is much easier to work with a stable good quality fabric than a cheap fabric from a big box store. If you have a hard time spending that much on a project that might just end up in the garbage, then shop the sale bin. It doesn’t really matter if it’s the ugliest fabric in the store at 90% off if it’s going to be in the garbage anyway. But it will allow you the ability to learn how to use your machine on fabric that does what you want instead of what it wants. My favorite brands are from my local quilt shop and they include: Riley Blake Designs, Moda and FreeSpirit. I have very limited access, so I can’t recommend anything from a bigger store like Joanns, Hobby Lobby etc.
6) Cut with Precision Be sure to pin your pattern well, and take your time cutting your fabric so it is cut accurately. It will make building the garment much easier.
7) Walking Foot If your machine has an available walking foot accessory, purchase it. It’s extremely helpful when sewing thick things (like the bag above). My machine came with it, but I found some online for my machine for about $25. Worth every penny.
8) Machine I have a Brother machine, not the cheapest, certainly not the most expensive. I just bought it last month when I found a good deal. I had been looking at a few other machines, Pfaff and Husqvarna, but they were above what I was willing to spend at the moment. But you know what, I made a few dresses on my old broken brother that I bought for $50 on Black Friday. While a nice machine is nice to work on, as long as you machine works correctly, you don’t need an expensive, fancy machine. The skill of the seamstress is just as important as the machine I believe (I can relate this to my husband who makes beautiful cabinets, he’s been told by high-end contractors that they are the best cabinets they’ve seen. All of his tools are modest, relatively inexpensive tools, and yet he can do phenomenal work (while most shops use minimum five figure CNC (computerized) machines). The skill of the craftsman is more important than the tool. You can see his work here). Don’t feel that you can’t learn unless you have a very nice machine. That’s just an excuse.
I hope that these items give you a place to start, to build the confidence that you *can* do it!! And when you do, I’d love to see what you create! Sharing the passion, one stitch at a time xx
Thursday, May 17, 2012
For the last two months we’ve been learning about the solar system in school. We’ve done models, puzzles, several hands on things to cement the planets into their little brains. But I wanted to make a reference book for them that they could keep for future reference. After looking around online a while for a free printable, I found this and I set to work! I pulled from my scrap bin and used my awesome Papertrey Ink dies (I love these little things!) I also used a transparency sheet (from office supply) for a front and back cover to give a little bit of stability to the paper.
Supplies: Bind It All, 3/4” o-wire, paper (I think reminisce, but honestly, it’s been in my scrap stash for a long time, it was a piece from when I started scrapping 7 years ago), Papertrey Ink dies (rocket, moon & alpha), Cosmo Cricket alpha letters, Bo Bunny bling, insides from here
Note: If you want to make one for your kids, I trimmed the pages to 7” (wide) x 7.5” (tall) leaving room at the bottom for them to write a bit of additional information about the planet (location in the solar system, how many moons, etc)
We’re getting mighty close to 100,000 hits! So be sure to leave a comment for your chance to win!
Wednesday, May 16, 2012
It’s always a fun treat to look forward to the next assignment box from Craft Warehouse for Design Team work. This go round, we had a wonderful box of the new Echo Park Note To Self line. I had seen it in the store and had it in my cart, but put it back last minute, and in a silly way, I’m glad I did, because it left the inspiration for the product fresh for me when the box arrived!
First up, we had to alter a stationery item we received. I chose to use the note pad box, it just tickled my fancy. First, I layered the paper over the top, and used a mask to mist it with some Candy Red Glimmer Mist. Just some layering and viola! A cute little note pad.
I’ve had a few requests for some ATG refills, and I’m out! I myself am down to my last two rolls, so I think it’s time to do another buy-in. Here’s the facts:
12 rolls (including priority mail to US addresses) $19.95
TheTapeDepot has in the past shipped the rolls to me in very quick turnaround time. I can rebox them and send them out the next day after I receive them. That being said, you should receive them within one week to 7 days of when I place the order. However, I will not be placing the order until I have at least 6 people interested. If need be to do more than one buy in, I’m fine with that!
There are currently 10 open spots. Please e-mail me to lovejoypaper (at) hughes (dot) net and I will send you the paypal information.
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Now before any of you go Kung Fu Grammar on me, I must clarify that the title of this post (and page) is directly from the mouth of a 5 year old. I was tucking her into bed last week after we had had a play day with some friends. She said she had a great time, but her brother was her “bestest friend”.
Supplies: Crate Paper (patterned paper, stickers & flags made with border stickers, 12x12 paper as well as 6x6), Studio Calico (veneer chips), Paper Trey Ink alpha dies
Design Tip: Visual Triangle The page has three points of interest creating a triangle. The veneer star on the t in “Bestest” the veneer shapes at the bottom left and finally with the most weight (the journaling) the veneer chips on the journal block. A visual triangle creates flow on the page and tells the eye where to look, playing a virtual dot to dot game with your mind. As you connect the lines, you’ll notice that they lines flow through the most important part of the page, my munchkins faces.
Price Per Page: $ (under $2)
We had a fun little surprise in our house last night. My husband found a kitten! We knew that our cat was pregnant, we just didn’t know where she hid the babies. But R found one. It was all he could find, and momma cat (Cinderella – yes, named by a princess) was okay with only one baby, so we assume that’s all she has.
4 ounces of absolute cuteness I wish A would have let me get a picture of her face, she was just beaming with joy at the little bundle!
Monday, May 14, 2012
Sometimes you see those scrapbook pages that are such an inspiration the memory of them doesn’t easily leave your mind. I remember several years ago I saw a page by Ali Edwards of her son walking away from her and she spoke about the journey of life. While I don’t remember much of the design elements, the concept of the page has always hung with me.
In February, on our way home from Great Wolf Lodge, we stopped at the railway museum in Snohomish, WA. I snapped this picture of my son walking on the railroad tracks. I knew I wanted to do a similar page.
Supplies: October Afternoon, American Crafts (Thickers), misc (floss & kraft cardstock)
Design Tip: Consistent Margins Despite the scan being uneven, the margins around the border of this page are all the same. As well as the distance the photo is from the right and bottom side of the page. The margin between the journaling block on the left and the left edge is also the same as the right side. Consistent margins create a consistent page, with a clear focus and clarity.
Price Per Page: $ (under $2 MSRP)
- You Are Charming
- Beautiful Wood
- We Are Family
- Card Week Conclusion–Challenge & Prize
- Card Week–Day 5
- Card Week–Day 4
- Card Week–Day 3
- Card Week–Day 2
- Card Week Day 1
- Challenge Reminder!
- Fabric Friday–Computer Tote
- Solar System Book
- Note To Self–Echo Park (Craft Warehouse Design Tea...
- ATG Buy-In
- Fabric Friday– My Craft Crush
- Check it out!! (And a winner!)
- “Effort” & Giveaway!
- 2 Years
- Mother’s Blog Hop
- Heart of Faith
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