Saturday, July 27, 2013

Top 5 CHA Favorites...Past & Present

It's that time of year again...Summer CHA just finished up, so I'm ready to make my wish list.  But before I get to that, I'd like to share with you my top five favorites from the releases that launched at Winter CHA, now that I've had a good, long chance to play with these goodies.

Supplies: green dotted paper & red hexagon paper from My Mind's Eye; blue dotted paper from Bo Bunny; white cardstock & yellow chevron paper from American Crafts; yellow woodgrain paper from Bella Blvd; striped paper from Crate; scalloped paper from Kaisercraft; bracket box paper from Lily Bee; alphabet stickers, label stickers, & blue button from October Afternoon; red button from Blumenthal Lansing; yellow button & teardrop rhinestone from Olla Podrida; ribbon from Berwick Offray; twine from Crystal Palace; paint from Ranger; pens from Zig; flower made from upcycled plastic bag.  And...holy freestyle, Batman!  :)  It just felt right for this page.

First on my list is "Collectable--Remarkable" by My Mind's Eye, which I used for the background on the layout above.  I love the whole collection, but in particular I love the shade of green that it features.  Not mint green, not lime green, not forest green...just plain green.  It's a surprisingly difficult task to find plain green scrapbooking products.  Yay, MME, for coming through with it!

Supplies: arrow paper, rainbow chevron paper, journaling card, & journaling pocket from Doodlebug Design; alphabet sticker & purple paper from Basic Grey; ledger paper & flair badge from October Afternoon; pens from Zig; vintage twine.

Lots of rainbow-hued products premiered at Winter CHA, but my favorite of the bunch (which was also, not coincidentally, probably the brightest of the bunch) was "Take Note" by Doodlebug Design.  The brighter, the better--that's what I say!

Supplies: all patterned paper from Lawn Fawn; all alphabet stickers from October Afternoon; all decorative stickers from Basic Grey; cardstock from Pulp; twine from Canvas Corp.

For cute icons and trendy bokeh patterns, my go-to collection lately has been "Pink Lemonade" by Lawn Fawn.  I used it to make the summery card above.

Supplies: all paper & stickers from Lily Bee; corner punch from Creative Memories; ink from Hero Arts; twine from Canvas Corp.

The thank you card above was made with Lily Bee Design's "Pinwheel" collection.  You can't beat the versatility of this collection, and I love the contrast between the juicy brights and the silvery grey.

Supplies: all paper & stickers from Basic Grey; die cuts from October Afternoon; pen from Zig.

Last but not least, I love the "Knee Highs and Bow Ties" collection from Basic Grey.  It's so easy to mix and match pieces from this range, and the products are great for kid pages.

So, those were my top five product picks from Winter 2013 CHA.  Now I am looking forward to several soon-to-be-released collections from the Summer 2013 CHA.  Here is what I've got my eye on:
  1. "Into the Woods" by Lawn Fawn: if that's not cute, I don't know what is.
  2. "Hello Again" by Carta Bella: I love the designs that Kaitlin Scheaffer puts out through Ormolu, and I'm excited to see her work being picked up by mainstream manufacturer Carta Bella.
  3. "Public Library" by October Afternoon: I'm such a bibliophile, I practically live at the library.  Did OA make this line with me in mind?
  4. "Play Date" by Bella Blvd: ahhhh, pure childhood nostalgia!!!
  5. "Base Coat II" by Kaisercraft: I loved the first Base Coat collection, and I'm ready for a second helping.  And actually, I think this collection might already be in stores.  :)

So, how about you?  What were your favorite product releases from earlier this year?  And which products are on your wish list for the latter part of the year?  I'd love to hear your opinions!  Thanks for stopping by today.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Once Upon A Sketch--July

Supplies: 12x12" graph paper by October Afternoon; 8x8" blank papers by DCWV; kraft notebook paper by Cachet; large & small alphabet stickers by Crate; photo corner/bracket stickers by Bo Bunny; upcycled sticker negatives by Bella Blvd & Basic Grey; pens by Zig; chalk by Stampin' Up; watercolor paint by Angora; orange acrylic paint by Plaid; green acrylic paint by Deco Art; Liquid Pearls, Stickles, & all other acrylic paint by Ranger; yarn scraps from my stash.

What is faith?  It is a mystical quality that almost defies definition.  It is a sensation perceived in glimpses--like sparks of light--instead of seen directly.  It stretches wide, like a rainbow arching across the sky, yet it fits inside the human heart.

The ethereal quality of faith is what I tried to depict in this layout, entitled "Growing in Faith," which I made for the OUAS July challenge.  Loosely defined lines, sparkly glitter, and rainbow colors help me portray "faith," all the while staying true to the OUAS growth-themed inspiration image and sketch (pictured below).

In designing my layout I used negative sticker scraps, bits of yarn, acrylic paint, and watercolors too.  My journaling says: "Not much grows in the winter, especially in Minnesota, but it's a good time for faith to grow, as we stay inside and become more contemplative.  On Candlemas (February 2) we get out A.'s Baptism candle and talk about its special meaning."

Thanks for joining me today as I shared a page with a deeper meaning.  It was fun to try something a little different.  I hope you have enjoyed it.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Scrap Around the World--July

Hello, everyone!  Did you get a chance to create something over the weekend?  Just as I had hoped, this past weekend I was able to play with paper a bit.  I played along with the June challenge at Scrap Around The World to create a layout about waffle fries, of all things!  The layout is called "Best Fries in the Universe," and the journaling says: "It is true.  These are the best fries in the universe.  Our must-have menu item at Zobota Café."
Supplies: background paper from Prima; fussy-cut spaceship & robot paper from Bazzill; pink paper from Authentique; blue/doily paper from Crate; alphabet stickers from Doodlebug; star sticker negatives from Basic Grey; ribbons from Scrapbook Fantasies; stamps from My Mind's Eye; black ink from Hero Arts; yellow & purple inks from Clearsnap; chalk from Stampin' Up; Stickles & Liquid Pearls from Ranger; pen from Zig.

I used the mood board and sketch from Scrap Around the World.  The muted colors from the mood board were influential in my choice of background, and I added pops of darker colors in the foreground, for contrast.  What I liked most on the mood board was the abundance of ribbon--for example, ribbons holding up the keys, ribbons wrapped around the hearts, etc.  This inspired me to use lots of ribbon on my layout.

In particular I used ribbon to make the "engine fire" of the fussy-cut spaceship.  I was, as you see, also very inspired by all the stars on the SATW sketch.

I stamped this robot, then gave him a dab of Liquid Pearls for his nose.  I also enhanced his eyes with Stickles.

My fussy-cut robot also got enhanced by Liquid Pearls and Stickles.

I also used Liquid Pearls in another way.  I recycled the negatives from some old stickers, by using them as stencils to paint star embellishments on the page.  I also added lots of other little touches--stamping in yellow with bubble wrap, stamping in purple with a gear stamp, shading with chalk, and adding more dabs of Liquid Pearls and Stickles, particularly on the ribbon strips.

I am a bit of a geek at heart, and any time I can use space-themed items on a layout, I am a happy camper.  I hope that you have had fun viewing my light-hearted layout.  And I hope I haven't made you too hungry for waffle fries!  Thanks for taking the time to stop by my blog.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Summer of Color Week 6

Sage and sepia are the color pairing this week, which is the final week of the Summer of Color.  

Instead of making a scrapbook layout, I did something completely different this time and made a necklace.

The seed beads in the necklace are glass, and the other beads are a mix of wood, glass, metal, and plastic, arranged semi-randomly.

I used many different beads from my collection, and it would be impossible to list all the sources; sadly, some of the bead shops that I used to frequent have closed.  However, the seed beads are the "Woodland" mix from Glass Garden Beads, a Minnesota bead shop that is alive and well.

Thanks for stopping by my blog to check out this post.  I have loved participating in the Summer of Color--it is my favorite blogosphere find of the year!  I'll close this post by reviewing the six Summer of Color projects that I created this year.

week 6 (this week)--sage green & sepia

As you see from the photo above, I still have enough of the "Woodland" seed beads left to make a bracelet to match my necklace.  I guess we all know what my next beading project will be.  :)  But first, I want to do some more scrapbooking this weekend.  I hope that your weekend, whatever it holds for you, will be a great one!


Saturday, July 13, 2013

Summer of Color Week 5

It's the penultimate week of the Summer of Color, and boy do we have a great combo this week: yellow and candy apple red!  I used these colors to create a scrapbook page called "So Playful."

Supplies: all patterned paper from Crate; all alphabet stickers from Basic Grey; heart tag & red twine from Canvas Corp.; enamel heart charm from C-Koop Beads; thread from DMC; milk cap from Jenni Bowlin True Vintage; eyelet trim & slide mount from my stash; vintage game card from Olla Podrida; buttons from Blumenthal Lansing; stamp from My Mind's Eye; ink from Clearsnap; yellow pencil from Faber-Castell; watercolor paints from Angora; pens from Zig.

The technique I tried this week was using a slide mount as an embellishment.  I love the faux vintage slide mounts that Crate Paper released as part of their "The Pier" collection.  They inspired me to dig out some slide mounts that I've had since the 1990's.  I used one of them as a frame for a "Pretty Kitty" vintage playing card.

I enhanced the slide mount, the heart tag, and the background paper on this layout with colored pencil, watercolor paint, and stamping.  I also made a custom flower accent with a milk cap and eyelet trim.

The journaling reads: "Sweet Tina never really grew up.  She stayed playful, loving to run, jump, and pounce."

Tina's real name is Valentina, hence all the "valentine-y" embellishments.  We called her Tina for short.

Thanks, as always, for visiting my blog and checking out my latest project.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

10 on the 10th: Autumn File

Hello, everyone!  Thanks for joining me today, for the next installment of my "Ten on the Tenth" destashing series.  In anticipation of all the "fall" products that are about to debut at CHA, I decided to try to use up some of my older autumn-themed stash.

I needed some thank you cards in early June, so I dipped into my stash of patterned kraft cardstock to make them.  Here's a thank you card with a big flower...

Project 1: patterned cardstock by Neenah Paper; floral paper & Bingo card by Simple Stories; paper leaves by Bo Bunny; stickers by Lily Bee; ink by Hero Arts; punch by Creative Memories; ribbon by Scrapbook Fantasies.

...and here's a cute graphic one.

Project 2: patterned cardstock by Neenah Paper; floral paper & tree sticker by Simple Stories; alphabet stickers by October Afternoon; punch by Creative Memories; thread by DMC.

The card below was for my son's gym teacher/basketball coach.

Project 3: patterned cardstock by Neenah Paper; label & flashcard by October Afternoon; alphabet stickers by Lily Bee; punch by Creative Memories; ink by Tsukineko; thread by DMC.

As long as I had the autumn-themed supplies out already, I decided to go ahead and make an autumn-themed card, as well.  :)

Project 4: patterned cardstock by Neenah Paper; patterned paper by October Afternoon; tag by Crate; ribbon by Berwick Offray; translucent stickers by FabScraps; navy alphabet stickers by Basic Grey; orange alphabet sticker, tree sticker, & word stickers by Bella Blvd; ink by Tsukineko; thread by DMC.

Then I went really wild and tried making a mixed media card on patterned kraft.  This cardstock stood up to the application of wet media quite well.  I am so pleased with how this card turned out; I'll definitely be trying something like this again soon!

Project 5: patterned kraft cardstock by Neenah Paper; patterned paper by Authentique; ribbon by Scrapbook Fantasies; stamps & ink by Hero Arts; all other inks, stains, & paint by Ranger; Aida cloth by Charles Craft.

Next I moved on to black cardstock, pairing it with gold for extra oomph.

Project 6: cardstock by Pioneer (from the album sleeve inserts); ribbon by Scrapbook Fantasies; pen by Ranger; ink by Tsukineko; stamp by Skull and Cross Buns.

I'm kind of in love with that hedgehog stamp, so I created another variation of this blank card.  It could work for any occasion, proving that black cardstock is not just for Halloween.

Project 7: cardstock by Pioneer (from the album sleeve inserts); ribbon by Scrapbook Fantasies; pen by Ranger; ink by Tsukineko; stamp by Skull and Cross Buns.

But, then again, black cardstock is great for a "spooky" scrapbook page.

Project 8: previously blogged here.

The funky B&W paper that forms the background of my next layout is from Witch Hazel, October Afternoon's Halloween collection.

Project 9: previously blogged here.

I used some more Witch Hazel paper, as well as other autumnal products, in my tenth and last project.

Project 10: previously blogged here.

Thanks for taking the time to look at my ten destashing projects.  It has been a lot of fun to find creative uses for seasonal products.  

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Our Beautiful World + Summer of Color: Week 4

I am having such a great time participating in the Summer of Color (SOC).  I'm meeting so many wonderful people, and I'm trying lots of new techniques.

This week I actually have two projects to share for the grey/pink SOC color scheme.  First up is a photo, which you see below.  This photo is for a new group called Our Beautiful World, which I heard about from Shahrul Niza, another Summer of Color participant.  

The theme this week at Our Beautiful World is "waking up."  When I wake up, my shades are pulled, my curtains are drawn, and everything in my bedroom seems grey.  But soon my eyes adjust, and pops of color start to emerge from the greyness...then I know I that I am awake for the day.  I tried to capture this feeling of color emerging from greyness with my photo, which was taken at a suburban Minneapolis park called Silverwood Park.  I used a setting on my camera (Canon Power Shot) called "color accent," which allows me to take photos in which everything is greyscale, except for one color of my choice.  Really these pink flowers are a bit darker than the "pale pink" called for in this week's SOC combo, but it was the best I could do with the flowers available to me in the park.
Supplies: chevron paper by Lawn Fawn; cream/pink floral paper by Authentique; all other paper by My Mind's Eye; stickers by October Afternoon; faux Candi brads by Craftwork; green acrylic paint by Deco Art; all other acrylic paint by Ranger; chalk by Stampin' Up; pen by Zig.

My second project is a scrapbook page, and I did use pale pink for it.  It's called "Meet Babe," and the journaling along the bottom reads: "Kansas City has its cow statues, North Dakota has its bison, and the Brainerd Area has its Babe the Blue Ox statues." 

I recently checked a book about decorative painting out of the library, hoping to give it a try.  Since this page is about painted statues, I thought it would be fitting to do a bit of painting on the page.  Instead of transferring one of the patterns from the book, I just used a floral motif already on the grey paper, painting in pink flowers and green leaves.  Not at all bad for a first attempt at decorative painting, I think!

If you ever come to the central lakes area of Minnesota, you will know where to find these statues!  :)

Thanks for looking at my projects.  Have a great weekend!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Scrap for Help July Reveal...Plus Art Journal Pages

Hello, everyone, and welcome to July!  It's my "month off" at Scrap for Help, but I still want to share the challenge criteria with you.  This month we challenge you to recycle bubble wrap as part of your project.  You can adhere bubble wrap directly to your page, or you can use the bubble wrap as a stamp.  Personally, I like to stamp with bubble wrap.  Here are some inspiration ideas for you from a few of my past projects.

In the example below, I stamped with ink.
Detail from a layout previously blogged here.

For my next sample, I stamped with acrylic paints.
Blast from the past!!!  I created this card for the first ever Scrap for Help challenge, back in 2011, way before I was on the design team.

And on my final sample, I stamped with watercolors, using oversized bubble wrap.

Detail from a layout previously blogged here.

There is plenty more inspiration to be found on the Scrap for Help blog, where the team members have examples galore for your perusal.  There is even a short (four minutes long) video tutorial by my teammate Elena Olinevich, showing you still more ways to stamp with bubble wrap.

Since I like to include new content with each blog post that I write, I'll close today by showing you three little projects that I recently created.  Two are art journal pages, and one is a mini album page.
Supplies: base paper by Echo Park; label stickers by October Afternoon; faux "Candi" brads by Craftwork; assorted blue paper scraps by various manufacturers (Canvas Corp, FabScraps, Bo Bunny, Lily Bee, Echo Park, My Mind's Eye, & Authentique); white acrylic paint by Deco Art; orange paint by Plaid; blue acrylic paint by Ranger; watercolor paint by Angora; black pen by Creative Memories; white pen by Ranger; decorative scissors by Fiskars; stamps by Stampin' Up; pom pom from my stash; typewriter from the early 1990's.  :)

I have been pretty interested in collage lately, and this art journal page is made with collaged scraps left over from a layout called "Snow Play" that I made last year.

I drew the fanciful girl myself and had fun doodling the details of her clothing.  I also enjoyed layering and painting over the background collage, for an autumn-meets-winter look.

The words of the journaling are very true...but I don't want to think about that right now; I just want to enjoy the short, hot summer.  :)
Supplies: assorted clothing tags; zig-zag paper by Jenni Bowlin; green floral paper by Paper Loft; multicolored floral paper by Basic Grey; striped paper by Fancy Pants; dotted paper by Simple Stories; ribbon, die cut, button, & price dot paper by October Afternoon; burlap tag by Canvas Corp; thread by DMC; ribbons, lace, beads, sequins, & denim scrap from my stash; pen by Creative Memories; wire by Artistic Wire

For my second art journal page, I collaged together assorted clothing tags, along with various items from my scrap box.  These clothing tags actually came from a shopping trip for summer clothes.  However, they made me think of back-to-school shopping, which is what I wrote about on my journal page.

The journaling says: "September still feels like the real start of the new year to me.  And with that comes the time for new clothes.  Most of my life has revolved around the schedule of the academic year.  First as a student, then as a teacher, and now as a mom.  Back-to-school time means back-to-school clothes."

In keeping with the clothing theme of the page, I tried to include as many different types of fibers and notions on the page as I could.
Supplies: mini album page by October Afternoon; word paper, ruler paper, & alphabet stickers by Doodlebug Design; sticker tab by Bella Blvd.; puffy star by Scrapbook Fantasies; colored pencil by Pedigree; ink by Clearsnap; photo corners by Scotch/3M; Doctor Who trading card by Cornerstone Communications.

The last project I'm sharing with you today is not an art journal page, but a page from my Doctor Who Anniversary mini album.  The page was inspired by a comment my husband made about my Summer of Color: Week One layout.  He said that the green inking around the edges of my page looked like an alien glow.  That was not quite the look I was going for with my Summer of Color page, but I figured the look would serve this Doctor Who page well.  :)  I'll post more info about this page--and others from the same mini album--in November, when the program Doctor Who celebrates its fiftieth anniversary.

That's all for this time.  Don't forget to play along with Scrap for Help, if you get a chance.  As an added incentive, I want to mention that the overall challenge winner this month will receive the above collection from Papercraft Scandinavia (Inkido), our generous Scrap for Help sponsor for July.  I look forward to seeing your bubble wrap creations!