Thursday, September 21, 2017

Summer Reading

This has been a great month for reading!  Sitting in waiting rooms and traveling gives you a lot of time to read books!  I also found a new series obsession:)   Game of Thrones.  I'm on the 3rd of the 5 books in this series.  

Over the summer my husband and I devoured the entire 7 of the HBO episodes.  Seriously.  I was on the edge of the couch by the end!  I did not want it to be over!!!  I am enjoying the books just as much if not more than I did the tv shows.  The details are more clear to me in the books for sure.  And I LOVE details:)  It's hard to believe that these books were written in the 1970's!  

I've read a couple of other books besides these 3 but they were not memorable and I tend to leave them in waiting rooms or airports for someone else to enjoy if I don't save them for my sisters.  They have very specific tastes so I don't save every book for them lol.  

On the creative front, here's 4 more pages to share.  I used my July 2017 Hip Kit for all of the pages that I'm sharing today.  Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is on Broadway now and my daughter sent me this photo.  We haven't gone to see it yet but we will.  It was a favorite show of mine when I was growing up and a favorite show of my kids when they were growing up......



These 2 cuties hug it out and act as if they haven't seen each other in months whenever they meet.  It's so, so cute:)......


Since I live so far away I don't get to hang out with my ladies but I do get to hear about their adventures.  They had a night out at a concert and said it was a blast.  Hate to have missed out:( but glad that they get to spend so much quality time together......


This summer was full of getaways, pools, beaches and car rides......


Thanks for stopping by and happy Thursday!




Wednesday, September 20, 2017

What A Month

August flew by in the blink of an eye.  It was so quick that I don't remember most of what happened during it!  Thank goodness for journalling and scrapbooking eh.  I can't count how many times myself or one of the kids has gone back and looked at one of my albums and found a great memory that had been completely forgotten.  

September did not start well for my family.  My brother was injured very badly and to this day has us all on edge with his health.  Any prayers you have to add to ours are much appreciated.  His story is not mine to tell without his permission and now is not the time for me to ask it from him but a prayer for a family in need of strength is always okay to request.  

As always my solace and my strength is my family.  My reflection is my hobby though.  Since i've been home and able to spend a little time creating, the knots in my stomach have loosened a bit and i've been able to relax some.  Especially as the memories of better times have reminded me that better times are sure to come again and that he will get better.  He will be okay.  

So to share a few pages of some better times, most from several years ago, i'll start here with this one using my June 2017 Hip Kit and a photo from a trip my husband I took to Vegas in 2013......



The rest of the pages are stashbusters using really old papers with a lot of newer embellishments.  I recently started an Elle's Studio membership so there is a lot of her product on this page......


My last 2 pages are a mixed bag of old and new.  Lots of Elle's Studio along with some classic Basic Grey loveliness:).  The inspiration from this page came from Ginny Hugh's "From A to Z" Class at Big Picture Classes.  Of course I didn't follow it to the letter but was very happy with the inspiration and instruction that she provided in her classroom.....





Thanks for stopping by and I hope that you all had a fantastic humpday!



Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Out Of The Box Inspiration

Our family spent a lot of time traveling this summer.  So many smiles and hugs and so much love expressed.  While our bodies are exhausted from all of the movement, our hearts are filled to bursting with all of the feelings.  It's almost overwhelming how HAPPY seeing the people you truly love can make you feel.  

But I digress.  This is a scrapbooking post and I am supposed to be talking about inspiration.  In my clan, get togethers begin, middle and end with food.  We are big time grazers.  So we spend a huge majority of our time together snacking or tasting.  We stopped by Publix to pick up a few things for a Sunday get-together -  

Can I just stop here and say that Publix is one of the greatest grocery stores of all time?  Seriously!

We stopped by Publix and as we were walking in I noticed their posters.  They were amazingly designed!  I realized that I could recreate page after page using some of these brilliant models.  The graphic designers who created them used basic design cornerstones that apply whether the design is for a poster or for a scrapbook layout.  

I used this ad.......



as inspiration for this page (I used supplies from my April 2017 Hip Kit)......



You can see how the strong lines in the ads translated easily into the different elements on the page.  I flipped the blushing beauties wording over and replaced the words with a photo.  The circle was duplicated and I just improvised on the rest.  The ad had details that I used but I didn't copy the look.  Absolutely inspiring:)

If you are drawn to an ad or poster, odds are that it is because the designer used tried & true design principles to create it.  You can follow that design on your own scrapbook pages or cards or art journal or whatever:) by identifying basic shapes, lines and paths than swap those elements out on your project with embellishments, papers and photos. Easy peasy right?

In other news I have 5 other layouts to share.  This bee has been busy!  Not only do I have have a ton of stuff to use in my stash, I just received a large order from scrapbook.com that I've been putting to good use as well.  On top of my Hip Kits.  I finished the last page from my June kit but it doesn't have a photo yet.  It probably won't have one until late September either lol.  Anywho.  Layout share.  I love, love, love how this page came out!  I never use this many photos and I rarely use a collage but this page was perfect for both situations.  These little guys are the best.....


June 2017 Hip Kit Club + Jen Gallacher Product Playground Class = a fun page about my great-nephews first Christmas Eve sleepover at my sisters house:).  The long, skinny picture was super cute....


Also crazy about this first layout for my family events album.  My son moved in to his college dorm!  So, so bittersweet!....


Another page with the April 2017 Hip Kit. We did a little road trip in our own city and it was fun.  There is so much to do here!......



And a random photo of my husband and I at a Christmas party.....



Thanks for stopping by and Happy Hump Day!!!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Bring It All Together

I am planning for some perfect crafting time in the near future.  That happens for me when there are no distractions like super long to-do lists, preparations to get a kid off to college, a long neglected home due to traveling and/or visits or lots of catch up work from things left undone.  Those things are behind me now and I have a little room to breathe.  

So now I have time.  My inspiration is ready.  My supplies are prepped and neat.  I am rested and full of ideas.  Go Time.  

This week I want to work with black and/or khaki cardstock backgrounds.  Another supply that is sparking ideas is Thickers.  There are about 100 packs of these little babies sitting in my stash and no matter how hard I try to stop buying them, I can't:)  Throwing them away is not an option so lately i've been trying to come up with ways to use them in ways other than titles.  There are only so many words you can spell without vowels!

If you have any advice or creative ways that you've come up with to use your Thickers, I would love to hear or see it.  Just leave me a link in the comments and I'll come check you out.  I plan to share my Thickers project sometime next week.  

One of the ways I have come up with to help get more of my non-Thickers letter stickers used, especially if I have a font in more than one color, is to use paint or ink to recolor the letters so that they all match.  

This letter sheet (available here) by Simple Stories is perfect for altering with paint.....


But the letter sheet that I've altered most often is this one by Lily Bee Design....



Over the years i've used this method quite a bit and it works well, even if the fonts don't match, but it works especially well for those large sheets of tiny letter stickers that have like 300 alpha's on them.  I love them!  And they are perfect for subtitles like the one I did on this page (I shared it on a post from a few days ago)



Funnily enough, most of the pages that I'm sharing today don't have letter stickers of any type on them:).  I used embellishment chipboard or stickers here for my title and supporting statements.....



Puffy stickers, stamps and a die-cut here.....


Finally we have some letter stickers but the printed paper provides all of the impact and support for the photo on this page....



And last but not least an invitation, stickers and die-cuts (again) to create the words that need to be said to support the story that I want to tell....



All but 2 of the projects were made with my Hip Kits.  Still enjoying them so much and hope to continue to use them for a long time to come.  

Titles have always been one of those things that a page must have to be complete in my book but lately, they have been becoming less important and more loosely defined on some of my pages.  We'll see where this title habit ends up at the end of my Thickers experiment right?  

That's it for me today.  Happy Monday everyone!  Hope you are having a fantastic start to your week!!



Sunday, August 27, 2017

Can This Paper Be Saved

Family Circle Magazine has a series called can this marriage be saved that I go to first whenever I pick up an issue to read.  Even though I don't read this mag regularly anymore, this series sticks with me and I find myself applying the question of saving to just about everything.  

For the longest time Basic Grey was a favorite manufacturer and I would by everything that they put out.  Their papers are out there!  Bright.  Bold.  Colorful.  Sometimes that is just too much and looking at the paper know, I often find myself not able to use it.  Even though I love the style, colors and boldness.  Looking at them and using them are two completely different animals.  




That's a whole lotta color up there!  The old Shere just looked at her papers and then either donated or slipped them back into the stash.  The non-hoarding Shere decided to do something about these beautiful patterns and get them on a page!  How?  By toning them down.  There are so many ways to do this that I played for awhile.  

with vellum, with gesso, with acrylic paint and with watered down versions of both gesso and acrylic paint......

  
In the end, I decided that I loved how the both the watered down acrylic paint and the vellum looked.  Together they created just the look I wanted but couldn't achieve with them on their own.  This lo was the colorful end result and not soft at all with the exception of the vellum topped papers:)......



But if I hadn't want to tone the paper down I could have also cut a big shape, backed it with a complementary cardstock and let it take over the page!  A nice big, black and white photo would have been stunning on this type of background.  Most times I find that a black & white photo is better suited to bold and bright pages like this.  Oh and using minimal embellishments in tight clusters works here too.  

Some other examples of pages on which I used bright, multi-colored patterned papers include this one of my youngest daughter.  I love the way she was smiling:).  The colors in the photo were so neutral and toned down that they would work with any color pallette....




Same with this photo of my nephew.  Although his trunks have a bright pop of red, everything else is neutral.  The paper pieced border running around the entire page has enough red in it to balance out the red in the photo and the embellishments are very minimal.....


I didn't show much restraint here except to use night photos:) My papers are super bright and busy but I limited the bright mostly to the outer edges of the page and the busy has just 2 colors and a simple pattern.  The design inspiration for the page came from Nicole Nowosads' scrapbook.com class "5 Products, 5 Ways".......


I toned down the colors here with a dose of cool white cardstock.  Keeping the colors framed and in small chunks help to control it and prevent it from taking over.  Love how this came out.....


Whew, I seem to have talked myself out.  Thanks for stopping by and I hope that you had a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Somewhere In Between Dislike and Hate

That's where I was with this page.....


I mean pink?!  What was going on in my head to think that the color scheme was a good one lol.  Sometimes you just have to let go of an idea or concept that starts off as a brilliant aha moment in your head but ends up as a pink fishing layout in reality:).  Honestly I have no problems tossing a page, photo or started project that isn't working for me.  But before I let it go I do everything I can to make sure that it can't be transformed into something that will end up working.  

This page was not awful enough for me to just chuck but I also knew that I would never be happy with it in my albums.  

What was ok -
  • the photos
  • the story
  • the basic arrangement
What was not ok - 
  • everything else!
Here is the made over page.....



I immediately got rid of the worst color scheme in the history of scrapbooking!  Seriously bad!  Then the themey embellishments (though really pretty) were ditched and I came up with a better title.  Since it was a page about my husbands love of fishing, I added masculine touches like wood dots, cork, inked edges, metal and black splatters.  The original journalling was typed on vellum and will be stapled to the page later on (I'm lazy that way lol).

I'm so much happier with the made over page and I think I will love it for years to come.  If I could give any advice on the subject of making over projects, it would be that it's just paper!  If a layout that you made is  not making you happy get rid of it!!  You can always start over!

Making over is something that I won't be doing with these next few pages because they make me happy and I think that they will make my family happy too when they see them. 

Nowadays my family sees my pages here on my blog or on pinterest well before they see them in any album.  Hi guys, I hope you love your pages:)  Here they are.....

This page about my guys at my oldest sons USAF grad has my heart.  Aaannndddd I just love how fun it is.....


This is from my MAY Hip Kit.  MAY!  But this photo of my 2 baby sisters is one of my favorite ever and it was perfect for this page.  The inspiration for the design came from a piece of art I pinned on pinterest ....


And my final page features another of the 300+ photos that my husband took at Q's senior photo shoot.  I'm also doing a few more pages this week from that shoot.  What can I say, the photo's turned out amazing!  The products are from my May Hip Kit.  Share Slacker here tee hee:).....




Thanks for stopping by:)  Have a fantastic evening!!


Monday, August 21, 2017

I've Got The Time. Now What?

Yesterday was one of those rare days that left me with a lot of time on my hands to do whatever I wanted to do with it.  Of course I headed straight to my studio:)  But when I got there I found myself just sitting and staring at the wall.  We've had a busy summer and I'm tired but don't want to nap.  My son is leaving soon so I'm sad but wanting to create about him leaving for college. 

My perfect solutions to excess time were not working.  

My studio is clean, I have 3 Hip Kits waiting, and pinterest is overflowing with fantastic ideas to scraplift.  Nothing was getting me going.  Nothing!  I'm so out of practice that everything that I normally do is just too much.  

At this point, my "lot" of time had dwindled down to "enough time to start a project" and I was starting to panic a little because my hands and heart were itching to create.  

So I started putting together papers, embellishments and inspiration ideas.  Just knowing that by the time I walked out of my creating space I would have at least completed one project.  

Nope.  Didn't happen.  I was not feeling it so I just called it a day and went and took a nap.    

Not what you were expecting right?  Me either but the nap was lovely and just what I needed even though I thought that I needed to create:)

Hope you had a great weekend and thanks for stopping by!