Saturday, August 31, 2013

30 Days of Lists, September 2013: My Journal

If you've never heard of this thing called 30 Days of Lists, well, it's exactly what it sounds like. Thirty days of list prompts, offered twice a year, by the creative gals over at the 30 Days of Lists blog. There's a whole community of fellow listers to inspire and motivate you, a private blog where ideas, giveaways, and daily prompts are posted, and a new-to-this-round private Facebook group. I'm also excited about posting my lists to Instagram (hashtag #30lists) and seeing other listers there, too.
The fun starts tomorrow, September 1st, and I'm all ready to go with my journal. I had this adorable Big Dreams Photo Journal kit from Simple Scrapper sitting around and decided this would be the perfect project for it.

And here's my album cover:

To set myself up for success, I pulled together everything I thought I might want to use in the album - printed-off 30 Days of Lists cards (included with purchase), the embellishments from the kit, a pen and mini glue stick, and a few extra labels, stickers, sequins and veneer from my stash. I'm pretty proud of myself. Going to keep it simple, and get it done. I tucked it all into this Timeless Beauty Bag from Thirty-One Gifts:

I don't have that much makeup, but I certainly have enough scrapbook supplies to fill a few of these nifty totes. Maybe more than a few. Priorities, people. 
If you're listing this month, too, share a link to your blog/Facebook/Instagram/wherever and I'd love to follow you. This project inspired my longtime friend Erin to resurrect her blog, LifeInk List Maker, and I'm super excited to read her words this month. Always thought-provoking. Or funny. Or head-scratching. Sometimes all three. She's pretty cool. 
See you back here next week for my next Project Life installment, and my first few lists!

Monday, August 26, 2013

Project Life, Week 34 and Transparency

No, not the bare-my-soul, no-holds-barred kind of transparency. I'm not brave enough for that. I did muster up the courage this week to try printable transparencies, though! After waiting impatiently for the box to arrive from Amazon, adding color to the 365Unscripted: 3x4 Transparencies 2 set from Traci Reed, and then a few false starts while my printer refused to cooperate, I finally had my very own sheets of customized transparent overlays.

If you find yourself with an obstinate printer, try taping the transparency to a sheet of plain white paper. Tape it very well all along the top and bottom edges (using colorful washi tape is optional, but obviously preferable). This tricked my printer into thinking nothing unusual was going on.

I love the impact these transparencies add to my photos and cards, without adding extra bulk to the album. I attached them three different ways: Paper clip, cleverly hidden tiny glue dots, and mini staples. Sorry about the glare, I still haven't perfected my in-pocket photography. If you have any tips, I'd love to hear them!

And now, on to the whole week. In addition to the transparencies by Traci (I used four of them over the week's spread), I also printed some word art and star elements from her new One of the Guys kit. The "made with love" 4x6 and woodgrain 3x4 cards, the "family time" wordart, and the plate/knife/fork cutout are from Studio Basic's Cook.Eat.Love collection. Most everything else this week is from Scraptastic's August This Life Noted kit.

Ahh that title card. I'm in love. I used gesso and watercolor techniques, along with printables, from the Studio Calico Toolbox class. An Ormolu flair and some enamel dots coordinate perfectly. The Love This Life die-cut was left over from July's kit.

I created my own coffee cup embellishment by stamping onto green paper and fussy cutting (the coffee stamp is from Studio Calico's July Project Life kit). That little Saturday journaling card is also from Studio Calico. And that wraps up this fun week! I can't wait to print more transparencies!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Project Life, Week 33 and Gossamer Blue Review

Last week, I decided to use my new Gossamer Blue August Life Pages kit almost exclusively. I also created a couple hybrid cards from Traci Reed and Ju Kneipp's new kit, Virtuoso, to accent one son's artsy adventures, and another son's messy adventures (which is so very descriptive of their personalities!).
Gossamer Blue entered the Project Life-style kit club scene in August, and their debut kit is pretty slick. A good variety of embellishments, exclusive custom-designed cards (by one of my favorite designers, Traci Reed), and a commitment-free structure. Subscribers, however, do receive some perks, like the printables that were possibly my favorite part of the kit. I adored all the little tags, icons, word strips, and more.

This month featured a travel theme, which wouldn't have been my first choice, since we rarely travel. But, it was an interesting challenge to incorporate the themed cards and embellishments in my spread, and especially with our trip to the Kiddie Park mid-week, I managed quite well. 
I like the perfectly-sized sentiments in the stamp set, and I used the circle outline a few times. I may even use the outline stamps to create some custom tags to have on hand for future spreads. 

Week 33, left side
Week 33, insert front
Week 33, insert back
I pulled supplies from all over for the insert, including digital paper by Rachel Young at The Lilypad, and a stamp (Mini Magical Moments) by CD Muckosky, also at The Lilypad. Those fun gold letterpress cards were a bonus for new Gossamer Blue subscribers. I love the bit of shine they add, even if it doesn't totally match my spread. I'm all about mixing and matching! I also experimented with stitching and watercolors this week, another technique inspired by the Toolbox class I'm taking at Studio Calico. (Ignore the blank 4x4 spot, I forgot to print one of my photos, I'll just throw it in with next week's batch.)

Week 33, left side and insert front
Week 33, insert back and right side
Week 33, right side
Gossamer Blue's kit contents are very competitive, with the "standard" 24 3x4 cards and 6 4x6 cards, plus an additional 3x4 and 4x6 vellum card, a generous two alpha sheets, plus enamel dots, label/arrow stickers, and more. I appreciate the mix of sequins, clips, washi, and wood veneers, rather than having a whole package of just one or two embellishments. 
The only two negatives, in my opinion, were the rather flimsy and almost too-small packaging holding the cards (I like to keep my cards in the protective plastic, but these were so thin they ripped quickly), and the color scheme of the sticker and alpha sheets. The colors, especially the bold blue and red, just didn't seem to match the cards. I'll definitely use them, but probably not with this set of cards. 
Overall, I'm very happy with the kit, and looking forward to September's! From the sneaks I've seen, it's even better than August!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Project Life, Weeks 31-32

Lots of hybrid fun these weeks, courtesy of the first few lessons in the Studio Calico Toolbox class I'm taking this month. It's my first SC class, and I'm really enjoying it. Week two is mixed media, so I'm guessing my next couple weeks of PL will get a bit messy! It's fun to mix things up, I have to try new stuff or I get bored. I'm sure it would be quicker to stick with the same style/theme/products/etc each week, but I just can't craft like that. I sure admire those who can, though, and end up with a beautifully coordinated book! Mine is a mismatched mess LOL!!

Week 31

This week I used primarily Scraptastic, and several of the cards were inspired by challenges for their 3rd birthday celebration. I finally used confetti in a pocket! That cute Enjoy Life card is from a recent card swap I participated in. The last 4x6 card I'm particularly proud of, I actually stitched strips of paper together - quite an achievement on my miniature craft sewing machine!

Week 32

This week I used more Studio Calico stuff, from my July Project Life kit and printables from the Toolbox class. Several of the cards I designed in Photoshop and then printed and embellished, and I am in love with how they turned out. How fun is that pie chart?! I confess, I hadn't seen the pie chart appeal yet, but I think I'm hooked now. 
I also used a fun technique from the Toolbox class on the "Sweet Sunshine" photo, by "removing" Avyn from the picture and typing the text, then popping him back on top. I really enjoy taking the time to incorporate my digital skills and supplies into my PL album. It's like including mini scrapbook pages every week!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Project Life, Weeks 29-30

No, I didn't skip Week 28. Well, I did sort of. But only because Week 28 is part of a super-secret-special blog post on a brand new blog I'm a part of. More on that coming soon...
It's been a busy few weeks. Lots of doctor appointments for the kids, and less time for me to sneak off to my craft room. But I'm managing to stay more or less caught up with my Project life album, even though the rest of my scrapping commitments are falling by the wayside. Er, staying by the wayside. They've been hanging out there for a while. Anyway, on to the good stuff!

Week 29

I blacked out one of the photo slots to protect the privacy of a friend's daughter :). This was a busy weekend, Cai participated in our church's Wipeout day camp (while I worked in childcare), and Sunday we attended a friend's dinosaur-themed party. The kids had a blast! 
Supplies this week are from Studio Calico, Scraptastic, Martha Stewart glitter letters, Glitz Designs, a Cathy Zielske digital overlay, and a Jade PL 4x6 card.

Week 30

Oh, week 30. A fun, crazy one. Avyn turned 3 on Saturday, so this week encompassed two spreads to hold all his birthday party photos. I used a couple swap cards, and a Traci Reed 4x6 digital card to tell my favorite story of the week - Cai's original monkey story! Hilarious!!
More Glitz Designs (I bought a set of their birthday-theme 4x6 cards from Paper Issues a while back), Studio Calico, and various digital supplies. The cute alphabet paper is Recollections, from Michael's. And that gorgeous gold glitter paper just doesn't look as cool online as it does in real life. The "Zoned out" and "Favorite Games" cards are from Traci Reed's G4m3r journal cards. The cute "dance in the rain", "wild thing", and "you are my fave" overlays are from Valorie Wibbens' Cotton Candy.

I'm so excited about a new blog I'm a part of, but we're not quite ready to launch. I'll keep you updated here, and I'll be sharing more of my Project Life spreads plus tips and tricks there. Lots of fun stuff planned!