Friday, August 31, 2007

Fast and Speedy Scrapbooking Layout

Well it must be a first... this layout took about an hour! And that was choosing the photograph as well.

It is an 8x8 layout and it was for a team challenge.

The challenge was to use red on the page and scrap a favourite item/place.

I've used patterned paper from Basic Grey (Scarlet's Letter)- currently my most favourite paper company! Have just bought about 4 of their collections packs from CraftsULove (the shop is quite near my mum in Surrey, so I pop in there when I go to visit, which doesn't do my wallet any good!!)

I scrapped my VW Beetle that I had back in the '80s. As the journalin says - when I was driving the car people always used to see it a give a little smile. I decorated it for various occasions, not just Christmas as in this picture.

Also a few months after this picture was taken I had the words "Baby Girl" sign written on the bonnet and boot, which made people go "Aaahhh" as well as smile!

She was a lovely old car... but comfort got the better of me and I purchased a more modern car a couple of years later. Kept the old banger on in tandem with the newer car for a while, but eventually had to let her go. Hopefully she'll still be making people smile on our roads as "V dubs" do go on forever!

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Scrapbooking Sketches

Came across a website recently that has "loads" of sketches for you to choose from. It's called (don't forget the 's' otherwise you get a street map website lol! - use the link it's easier!)

There are some sample layouts with some of the sketches, and there are various sizes catered for.

I especially like the Circular page layout sketches - very different.

And it is one of the few sites which actually gives you some sketches for tags AND cards!
Check it out.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Simplify your Layouts

We are all in danger of saying “wow” to some layouts and “gosh I really want to make a layout like that”, but really when you look closely, these fantastic scrapbooking layouts are full of intricate details and loads of embellishments and frankly would have taken a long time to accomplish.

So we think, I can’t do that, or I’m not good enough, or clever enough… sound familiar?

Well I have found that although I like to get “stuck in” to an intricate layout, it is actually the simple pages that hold most impact!

The other point to remember, and it is something we all so easily forget… is that scrapbooking is actually two main forms of craft.

The first, is the one we get into the craft for and that is to make our pictures pretty and archive them for posterity.

The other is the one we end up doing and that is getting overwhelmed by all those luscious products and all those lovely layouts (that take ages) all over the web.

Come on… admit it….

Who hasn’t managed to waste a couple of hours of scrapbooking time online looking for inspiration only to over do it and feel inadequate, and then run out of time to boot!! What a bummer!

So, if you have a huge pile of photos that's getting bigger by the day, simplify your layouts!

Here is a link to an article (well part of an article) with “recipes” for making simple pages. It’s from Creating Keepsakes and is entitled… “Make 12 Layouts in One Night!” It doesn’t show you all twelve, but it does give you an idea of what I mean.

Let’s get back to the simplicity of a few photos, a few papers and embellishments and a snippet of journaling and see how much more we get done!

I had to quickly make an 8x6 layout for my mum-in-law last night before she went home this morning (she was visiting). And because I knew I didn’t have the time to fiddle about and I HAD to make a layout, I kept it simple and felt good because it took all of 30 minutes and that included looking for the right stash too!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Beauty of White

It was my wedding anniversary the week before last and my husband gave me a big hand tied bouquet of flowers - can't go wrong with flowers, I just love them. And although I do have my preference of colours (I don't really like bouquets of yellows and oranges much) I just love fresh flowers, period.

Anyway, this particular bouquet was blues and whites. Nice combination. And it contained one of my most favourite flowers... lilies. I love lilies because they are big and bold but also simple - they only have 6 petals. I even like the yellow ones! LOL!
So, as I always do, I took some photos of the bouquet, and I will get around to scrapbooking a layout about it.
I am thinking of doing a little book or album about the various bouquets I have been lucky enough to receive over the years... just need to try to find the various photos. All the ones I have taken since I got my digital camera are no probs, it's all those ones before that - taken with... oh... what's it called again... [thinks] oh yes... 35mm film! How quaint, LOL!
In the meantime I thought I would post this close up of a pure white lily from the bouquet.
The inspiration I take from this... that I would like to attempt a layout using only shades of white!! Now that is a challenge!

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Calling all Readers - Feedback

I have been staying with my mum for a few days, as I do ever 5-6 weeks with my daughter. Which is why I have not posted here since Tuesday!

That's because despite having my lap top with me, I can't get online at her house. She uses AOL as her provider and I am not prepared to download all the AOL guff onto my LT for it only to put a Gremlin in my system - which is something I have heard frequently from people.

So I will be posting here very shortly - a little gem of information maybe!!

The decision was whether I should make the effort to drive into my mum's nearest town and try to get a connection or just leave it for a few days.... maybe I should have posted here on Tuesday that I was going to be away? What do you think?

That's the trouble... I don't know who (with the exception of a few people) reads this blog, or how often, or what they would like to read about.

So... let me know - is there something you would like me to address? Or maybe just say hi?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Circle Journals and Tag Books - what are they?

I have been in discussion with my new team on UKScrappers about Circle Journals (CJs). I thought I would post basically what I have explained to them here, as I am often asked about them and what they are.

here is a link to a set of photos of a circle journal which I did with my ladies at the Scrapbuddies January crop.Normally a CJ is started by one person and then posted to the next and the next and so on, but instead of sending it around everywhere, we made the pages there and then (at the crop) and I put them into the book (just stuck the pages back to back). The way we share the book is that I posted these pictures on the website and they can borrow the book if they wish - to show family and friends etc.However, for those of you who don’t know what it’s all about…

The person starting the journal makes the basic blank book/album. That person then makes the covers and inside DPS (double page spread) explaining the content of the book (ie, the theme of the book. In this case it was “Likes and Dislikes about Christmas”).

That person also needs to provide a "sign in" page for each participant to place their identification (photo/words/whatever). And of course make a DPS of their own. It is then sent on to the next person who makes their DPS on the next available pages and also "signs in" on the designated pages.CJs can be any size, but are quite often 6x6 ish!UKScrappers have CJs on all the time in groups of 10 people and so if you are in one of the official CJ groups, you start one off and so do the other 9 people.

On a set date you all have to have finished your contribution and post the CJ on to the next person on the list (to your left as it were!!) each time.

It can take the best part of a year to complete and the reason for that is that if there are 10 of you and you move the journals around every 3-4 weeks - that's 30-40 weeks before you get your completed journals back!

If there is a group of you, a crop group or just a few friends who want to do this, it is great fun. But if the reason to do one is to create a book about all of you (so you can get to know each other a little better) then perhaps a better alternative is to make a tag book.

Each make up a tag about yourselves including some specific info like name, place where you live, who you live with, pets, age, some favourite things maybe, and you made 10 identical ones, you could all end up with an identical tag book each ! As long as you are all working with the same tag template (size especially!!!!) then it should be a breeze!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Scrapbooking out of your "Comfort Zone"

This is a page I created for a "Team Challenge" on UKScrappers.

A teammate set the challenge and, because it contained "use yellow and white papers" I should have groaned (because I don't like yellow as a rule), but I didn't. I was actually looking forward to it!

This is because it gets me "out of my comfort zone". I wouldn't normally like to gather all my yellow bits together and get scrapping, but in this challenge I had to! And I am actually quite pleased with the result.

I have scrapped yellow pages before because (and I did it for the same reason) - my mum-in-law likes yellow and so for Christmas I hand made her a yellow album and inside I made a few pages (not all yellow mind!) every so often I make her a few pages to go into the album.

Although I haven't made them all yellow and orange, I have leant towards the colours she likes in most of them and it makes me use the stash I wouldn't normally - not to mention actually buying it in the first place.

That's why challenges can be great for getting your creative juices flowing, they make you think about stuff you wouldn't normally use. Also great because if you have bought and packs of paper or embellishments or maybe a kit or two, there is usually something in there to which you think "Mmmm, not too sure about that," or, "Oh I won't use that!"

Well maybe take a look on the web, type "scrapbooking challenges" into a search engine to get you started. A good site which posts monthly challenges is an Australian Site called The Scrap Witch and this is their August set of challenges.

You never know - you may a challenge is right up your street! Oh and the rest of the challenge for which this layout was made...
White and Yellow papers
2-3 photos of garden wildlife or flowers
use buttons
use ribbon!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Scrapbooking Albums - 6 Tips for Beginners

I had a conversation with a lady recently, and it is not the first time I have heard this...

But she mentioned that she had started into the world of scrapbooking because she wanted to make an album for her 2 sons. She found the first album really hard going, and like many people, started with the oldest photos first.

Luckily, she was advised that the best way was not to try to do it all in chronological order, but to scrap the big events first. This helped and on putting the pages together (12x12 album - which I always think is a very difficult thing for beginners to do anyway) the pages dovetailed into one another nicely.

Unfortunately, the person who gave her the advice was a consultant of one particular company and so this lady had the constraints of only really being able to use one company's designs. Again a difficult thing for a beginner to do.

However, my advice to all beginners is:

  1. DON'T attempt a whole album - start by laying out a single page, then another and then another.

  2. Start with your most recent photographs - these memories are fresh in your mind and journaling comes much more easily.

  3. If you are doing older photos, then concentrate on the layout leaving space for journaling - or even put your notes/journaling on the back (if only for posterity's sake)

  4. Try to start on an 8x8 layout - there isn't so much blank space to cover than 12x12 and the picture takes up more space and has more impact - it's just not so daunting.

  5. If you really want to make an album - start by making a paper bag book or a 6x6 album bound with book rings or even ribbon, pages are filled a lot quicker and subsequently your album is finished a lot quicker - this gives you enthusiasm to do more and bigger albums.

  6. If you get stuck in a rut when doing an album on a specific theme (like a particular person's album), stop trying and create a layout about something completely different, this will free you from the constraints of your album and let your creativity flow, it should jump start your album pages again.

I love doing paper bag albums of a specific event, I scrapped my last holiday which was a week in Majorca. I will upload the photos of it shortly. But you only need about 12 photos you can make more journaling for the pockets and store other photos inside these pockets too, just add some papers and embellishments, keeping it simple and there you have it.

There are so many ways of creating little mini albums with which I always recommend beginners start.

When I have given a demonstration and the attendees have then made a mini album in a matter of hours, they are always so pleased with what they have achieved and that always makes me happy!

Let me leave you with this question...

Do you really have to make the whole album look the same - why not create layouts of all different styles and colours and then put them in the album?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Wedding Anniversary

Well this is the card I have made for my hubby for our 15th Wedding Anniversary - which is tomorrow!

"Oh no!" I hear you say... "what if he sees it?"
Well excuse me while I roll about on the floor with laughter! The chances of my husband using a computer to view my blog is akin to the chances of Tim Henman winning Wimbledon! Sorry Tim, but I'll give you an "A" for effort!!
My hubby tells everyone that I have a blog and what it's about, but he has only seen it because I showed him on my computer - he's a bit of a technophobe!
Anyway, this was a budget card really (not intentionally - just ended up that way!).
The papers came free with Scrapbooking Inspirations March 2007 issue and the chipboard heart with the June issue (Ellory Designs), and the blue ribbon has been recycled from something, although I can't remember what!!
I quite like the papers, you may remember them from the post re the Paper bag album. They are from "Sassafras Lass". They are not my usual colours (certinaly not usually mixed together) but my top in the photograph kinda lead the way on the colour front.
I'll let you know if, by some miracle, my hubby manages to see this post!!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Good grief it was windy!

Well I feel like I've been sand blasted today!!

I decided in my wisdom to go to the beach this afternoon. There is a nice little beach about 10 miles from me. It's got a little area with bouncy castle, etc for the kiddies and other little amenities.

Anyway, thought it would be nice if we all went, I took my daughter there on Wednesday afternoon, but it was really winding - had fun erecting the little beach shelter (tent thingy) that I had just bought, as you can imagine.

So, we went... to the beach... and it was soooooo windy I can't tell you !!!!!

I think I have been exfoliated, through my clothes!!!!

I was wearing a T-shirt and 3/4 trousers, jumper and had to give in to wearing a light weight coat too.

English beach holidays... stuff of legends! I've got sand in all sorts of places... in my ears, hair... well let's not go anywhere else eh?!

The picture is actually one I took when Honey and I went to the beach on Wednesday which was windy, but not as windy as today... good grief!

So you just know I'm gonna scrap this picture with a comment to how flippin' windy it was, don't you?!!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Scrapbooking Challenge on UKScrappers

Well, it's been a week of firsts for me!

The first "first" is that I have signed up, and now become a member of an online Team on UKScrappers.

I have been a browser for a while, since 2005 in fact, but never really wanted to spend too much time fiddling - gosh you can spend a lifetime just reading and chatting on there!

Anyway, my team name is Rockin Ribbon Raiders!

The second "first" (is that possible?) is that I have entered one of the challenges! The resulting layout is pictured here.

I don't know if I have posted in the right places on the UKS website, but someone will tell me maybe, if I have!

The third "first" is that this is my first ever layout of my sister!

The fourth and final "first" is that I can safely say it is my first ever layout to include a camel!!! LOL!

And for all of those of you who have been on the Scrapbuddies website recently, and are planning to attend the next crop in Ditchingham on Saturday 18th August, this is also a layout to cover the first of the two challenges from which to choose! (as I half-inched it from the UKS site - duly credited, of course!) So you're getting a sneeky peek!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Where's my Memory

I have been trying to venture into the world of Digital Scrapbooking, but despite my laptop being only a year old - I need more memory!

I bought Photoshop Elements a few months ago and created my first page whilst trying to work my way around the new program.
The layout is the one of my daughter riding her new bicycle which I mentioned in an earlier post.
I used free papers and elements from various sources (when I can get the info I will put the credits for the designers on here) Most of it, however, is the "Festival" collection freebie from Shabby Princess.
It is a primitive attempt, but I am quite impressed with the ease of use. BUT...
Getting back to the Memory part... my poor LT (laptop) really didn't like the hefty file sizes and took forever to save the page... and as for printing it... well [rolls eyes!]
So I had been trying to arrange for some more RAM and today it was fitted, meaning I have 3 times the amount of RAM and boy, does it make a difference!
Wouldn't it be good if we humans could just slot in a bit more memory - think how much more we could get done!!

Monday, August 06, 2007

Speed Scrapping!

Phewee, there... I did it! [pant,pant]

From photos taken yesterday afternoon to 12x12" layout this evening!

And... photo then taken, fiddled with in Photoshop Elements and brought to you now!!

I've even impressed myself! Well of course it is at the expense of everything else this evening!!!!

Trick was to "keep it simple". Cos that's my trouble... I get ideas that take an age to figure out, carry out and lay out!

So there is it anyway!

I'm off back to A&E with my daughter tomorrow morning! Yes, not satisfied with her final inspection at the plastic surgery department last Thursday, after nearly taking the whole of the top of one finger off (see post in June) she decided, in her wisdom, to snort a small bead up her right nostril !!

Kids eh [rolls eyes and tuts].

So off we jolly well go again up to the main hospital. I was hoping it would come out on it's own (she did it on Friday evening), but it's still up there. So I took her to the little outpatients in the local town, but they can usually get "items" out of orifices... but not in this case as it's too far up and they would need to give her a bit of anesthetic before they go poking around up there.

Of course, they don't keep any of the "special spray" they use!

What fun we will have at the EN&T department... that's what the nurse kept referring it to. "What is EN&T?" I asked ... "Oh Ear, Nose and Throat".

Obvious when you know, isn't it! LOL

Of course during all this Honey can't feel it up there, she has tried to snort it out, and is actually quite good at snorting now - so the silver lining to this is that she may actually learn how to properly blow her nose!

And bless her... she lies on the sofa (or the bed) and let's me shine my keyfob torch up her snout to check whether it's till there or not!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Watch this space

Here is a photo which I took today of my daughter on Holkham Beach - North Norfolk Coast in England.

In fact I think I'll restate that... a picture of my daughter RACING to the beach! As you can see... the sea is nowhere to be seen!!! (try saying that when you're drunk!) LOL!

I thought I would do a speed scrap, so tomorrow I will post a photo of the layout onto which I am putting this photograph!

Now there's a challenge!

Friday, August 03, 2007

It’s oh so Black and White!

I was inspired by a layout by Kelly Slattery over at the Paperpesto blog. I particularly liked the cut out edge of the flowered paper.

I found some paper of my own which was black and white and so decided to theme the whole page to black and white so that the colours in the photographs could shine through.

The words “ice cream” were stamped with a white opaque ink, however they were anywhere near clear enough so I have gone over them with a white pen.

The “&” (have you spotted it yet? LOL) and the words “Merry-go-Round” are rub ons. The only colour I introduced to the page (apart from the brass eyelets and brads, which I don’t really consider a colour as such) was a metallic finish red brad holding on a pearlescent flower on the photo bottom left.

I felt that corner of the page just needed to be “tied in” (colour-wise) with the photographs a little more and I believe the tiny brad does that.

As for the eyelets… I adhered some white paper to the back of the layout over each of the holes to lighten them, it was a better finish than a dark inner.

Useful TIP: The photographs on this layout date back 2 years. I always write on the back of my layouts the date I actually created the page, I think it will be interesting to see my development in a few years time.

Anyway, thanks Kelly for the inspiration!