This Precious Life

I am a subscriber to the Studio Calico Project Life kit as well as their scrapbook kits. I love receiving my brown box every month! When I opened up the February kit it was even more gorgeous then I had thought it would be. Some of the filler cards were so beautiful I considered framing them to put on my wall! The thing is I rarely use filler cards in my Project Life spreads a been and I have working hard at using my favourite supplies first rather than hoarding them. I knew I needed to use some of these cards on layouts.

I loved the green colour of the “Grow where you are Planted” card and decided I would love to feature it on a layout. I used this gorgeous layout by Adrienne for inspiration so that I could enter it in the Member Scraplift Challenge for this week.

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I covered the background paper with vellum to soften it up a bit. I am also loving the wide ombre washi tape! I have used it on the last 4 layouts I have created. I am also happy I was able to use one of the wood veneer geotags as I always seem to struggle with using geotags. The aqua clip is covered with a button as it had a moustache on it. I loved the colour of the clip but have little use for anything with moustaches on them. I finished off with a bit of splatter in Warm Calico, one of my favourite colours of mist.

I have been thinking a lot lately about moving away from our isolated Northern town.

Sometimes, I feel that I am so busy planning our future that I forget to live in the present. I thought that the card would be a perfect reminder of this for me. I am really loving how this layout turned out and am thinking of displaying it in my room to remind me to make the most of this precious life I have. 


A Stenciled Background

I am currently taking the Bright Ideas class at Studio Calico. I hadn’t planned on taking the class, but for just over $10, I decided on the final day for registration to give it a try. I sure am glad I did! The class consists of challenges every weekday in February that are designed to push you creatively and help you look at product or layout design in a different way. 

The first challenge that went up on Friday was to include a stencilled background on a layout. I decided to use a bird stencil that I received in the most recent Swap your Stash trade over on the Studio Calico message board (Which you should totally take part in if you get a chance, lots of fun!). I hadn’t used it yet and thought it would be perfect to pair with some pictures of my daughter and I watching seagulls.

Instead of falling back on mist with the stencil I decided to try modelling paste mixed with a little light blue paint. It added a really cool texture! I love that is tone on tone with the background so that it wasn’t too much of a look.

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I used the Amy Tangerine Ready, Set, Go collection for the layout. I love the blues and greens together! I purchased a lot of the collection when it first came out but had yet to use it. I am trying really hard to use my favourite pieces these days rather than hoarding them until I no longer love them anymore.

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Thanks for stopping by!


Where I am Starting: The Photos

So before I begin,a little background on where I am right now in the process starting with the most important thing to scrapbooking, the photos:

I like to work with 4×6 photos almost exclusively. The size works out well with 12×12 pages with 12 being divisible by both 4 and 6. The prints are the most inexpensive to print and easy to order in bulk. They are also large enough to see detail in the photos, unlike some of the smaller sizes that are quite popular.

The problem with my photo process is that I don’t spend enough time with my photos. I love having photos on hand rather than looking through my computer when I want to make a layout. I need to set a schedule and edit, upload and order photos more regularly. It is a part of the process I least look forward to and as a result I am constantly putting it off. I have close to 2000 photos from a trip my girls and I took in the summer to visit my Dad and I have 1 of them actually scrapbooked! I keep putting off going through the photos and actually ordering them so it hasn’t been done. I am thinking that setting aside time at the end of each month to do this may help. I am currently doing Project Life as well, so this will most likely cut down on the number of extra photos that I would have to order each month ( I print my Project Life photos at home on a Selphy printer each week).

Once I have the photos I put them away in photo albums like this one. I like that they are 3 ringed like a binder so you can move the pages around when you start emptying them and making layouts.  also like that I can store several photos that will go on one layout in one pocket as I put them away. As I am putting them in the album I also keep a stack of sticky notes handy. I will jot down any layout ideas I have while filing the photos away and place it right on top of them. I will also jot down if there is any memorabilia that goes with the photos so when I scrap them I will not forget it.

Up next, the current state of my pages!


Developing a Process

I have only been scrapbooking for about two and a half years. As my eldest daughter was about to turn one I had done little in the way of a baby book for her throughout her first year and I felt guilty about it. I decided that I would make a little scrapbook for her covering her first year. I live in a small isolated town with no scrapbooking store. I ventured into Walmart one day and found a little pink 8×8 album and some baby girl papers, some corresponding card stock, ribbons and mini brads. I had received a Cricut the Christmas before from my hubby to use in my classroom (at the time I taught first grade and thought one would be fun to help with posters and bulletin boards) and used it to create embellishments as well. I created a double page spread for each month of her life and had it completed for her first birthday party. I loved it and was hooked!

I began searching online and stumbled upon Studio Calico.  I was in awe of the layouts and the pretty supplies that I saw. They were gorgeous and creative and looked very little like my little baby scrapbook. I immediately wanted to be a part of this amazing community. Two days after my daughter’s first birthday I signed up for Studio Calico’s monthly scrapbooking club.

About a year into my journey I began thinking about my process and what the end result of all this creative work really was.  I have taken a few classes on the subject (Stacy Julian’s Finding Photo Freedom and Shimelle Laine’s Cover to Cover) both of which were amazing. The thing is, no matter how fabulous both of these women’s processes and systems are, they are not perfect for me. Over the next few months I hope to further refine and develop scrapbooking process that is perfect for me and the way that I create.


A Return

I have been thinking a lot over the last few months about why I scrapbook. I haven’t posted here since the spring for several reasons: an unexpected illness, an extended holiday out of town and returning to work after 15 months maternity leave are just a few.

I was also beginning to feel that I was scrapbooking and posting layouts for the attention and comments from other scrapbookers. If I posted a layout that received a positive reaction and lots of comments I would try to replicate the techniques or ideas I had used in my next page. If I posted a layout that I loved but that received little or no feedback, I would begin to feel that perhaps the layout was less than I had thought, that it was just not good enough. The hobby that I was passionate about, that I love more than any other was making me feel less than worthy, or more correctly, I was letting others responses to my scrapbooking make me feel inadequate.

I decided to stop posting any layouts at all and just create for fun. I became even more prolific than before, creating a few layouts nearly each and every night after my girls were in bed. I scrap lifted when I felt like it, and loved the results. I used 4×6 photos and lots of colour, including coloured card stock backgrounds (two things that seem to go against what the more popular scrapbookers are doing) and I began to develop a style of my own that I loved! 

I have decided over the last few weeks that I do miss the camaraderie and friendships that develop from sharing online. I have always been a fairly shy person, I don’t easily make friends. I don’t have any real life friends that scrapbook, at least not the way that I do. No one else in my life seems to understand this crazy obsession I have. I decided that it is about time to make some connections with other women, even if they live far away from my Northern home. I am vowing to be true to myself and my craft, to have more confidence in the value of my work, even if it may be different. I hope you’ll join me on my journey.

See you soon!


You are Loved

Sometimes as a mother I feel as if I am failing. I don’t mean that I am not looking after my girls or taking care of their needs or loving on them, I do all of that. But sometimes my patience is not what it should be with Lily and I raise my voice. Sometimes I am tired from waking up several times in the night with Piper and Lily is left to play a lot of the day by herself. Sometimes I let her eat a peanut butter and jam sandwich again for lunch because that is what she asks for even though I know I should try to feed her vegetables. My house is not always sparkling clean, laundry is not always put away as soon as it is folded. I have been preoccupied with some health issues and I am not always ‘there’ with them.

With these thoughts on my mind I created this layout on the weekend. It is based on another Sketchbook sketch.

The journalling came first. Sometimes I feel like the journalling I soon layouts is like therapy for me 😉 When I first started scrapbooking I struggled with journalling and just wrote who,what, when, where sort of stuff. One of the first scrapbookers I really admired was Stephanie Howell and it was because of her heartfelt journalling. Reading her layouts could make me cry and I love that! It is something I’ve really worked on and have come to love my most heartfelt layouts the best. This is one of the reasons I adore this layout. The colours are also my favourites and so is the adorable picture of Lily! I love the technique of the ombre misted background (what can I say, I love colour!). I used Mister Huey’s in Plumb Thumb, Piglet, Dewey and Water Cooler. I did spray a bit too much mist this time though. I had tried a mask that didn’t work out feel and tried to cover it over so the colour is a bit too splotchy. The stitching is a bit wonky too but I still love it!

Thanks for visiting today 🙂


Big Sister

I have another layout for you today based on a sketch from Kelly Purkey’s Sketchbook4 class.

I used overlapping washi tape in the same colours as the stripes in my daughter’s dress to create a background for the photo. I really like the effect that the overlapping strips create. Because the background is busy I kept the rest of the layout fairly simple with just a title, a brad and a few label stickers.