Saturday, August 30, 2014

Currently in my World

Hello Hello
How is everyone?
Fabulous you say...Wonderful!!!
Happy Holiday Weekend here in the US...
Thought for today I'd share some of my recent Instagram pics and then apologize for the late post this week and last - around here we are getting readjusted to school schedules and with a 4 year old having to learn the ropes it's been rather time consuming so getting my posts done at a reasonable hour just isn't happenin' quite yet but we're almost there.
Besides that I have been spending lots of time in my craft space getting some new things done and a ton of new things started. I have learned of a local event taking place here in my hometown that I may be able to be apart of to help draw attention to my craft and hopefully me as an artist so I've been brainstorming trying to come up with some fresh ideas that will hopefully sell. Some of my ideas are still just that - ideas - and others are in process as we speak but eventually they will all get done and then I can share them with all of you...yay!
Unfortunately last weekend I put to much stress on one of my favorite gal gadgets and it was just to much for her to bear...she bit the dust last Saturday night...I busted not just one but two of her arms from over load...so let that be a lesson for you...if you overload it - it will break...
I'm super sad because this Clip-It-Up by Simply Renee has been a wonderful stamp storage station for me for many many years now and unfortunately I have to come up with something new because these were discontinued many moons ago...
So here you have it...
for now this is what's become of all of my stamps. Using the same clear envelopes and the same clips that came with my Clip-It-Up, I grabbed some 1 1/2 inch book rings attached them to the pole in my craft closet and then essentially hung all my stamps up like clothes. I need to get some more book rings and some more clips but otherwise I can actually see my sets much better having them spread out like this in the closet. Also being that they are now at my eye level, which before they were knee high, makes it a ton easier on my back and/or my knees depending on if I bend over or squat so...in case you needed yet another storage solution for your stamps that's my idea. 
So...nothing super interesting today just wanted to jump in here and let you know I do have lots more in the works and plan to have a regular post up hopefully tomorrow. In the meantime I hope you have a wonderful weekend - maybe have a spell with some family and friends making some new memories or perhaps your idea is to take it easy or create a new masterpiece - just let it be from your heart because life is to short not to.

thanks
just B

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Home Page

Hello Hello
How is every one's weekend? Getting some fun in and some relaxing in and some playing in I hope. I've actually gotten lots of cleaning done as we will have a house full come later this evening. So in the spirit of having friends over, I thought that I'd share a layout about our home.
For this layout I started with a photo that I took of our front flower bed, the flowers were all in beautiful full blooms; adding to that I had a close up shot of one of the blooms in two sizes and so I decided to make that my focal point for the simple fact that the bright yellow is always such a happy color to come home to. 
As with any layout I begin with one or two colors from my photo(s) which in this case I chose the yellow not green so I grabbed a scrap of yellow checkered pattern paper and then the black and ivory polka dot piece and arranged them how I liked the best, then added in the strip of black shiny tulle to create more texture and more color but something that also helps keep the bright of the yellow in check which I think the tulle does a nice job of with it's 'not so bold' flare.
Next I added on the supporting photo first then took my two photos of the same bloom and layered them one on top of the other. At one point or another I did think maybe to add a layer of adhesive foam between the photo layers, but in the end decided not to because I really like how the Kraft frame pin points the focal point and with an extra element underneath the letter 'O' it just didn't work having the entire piece popped up.
Finally I went back in with lots of embellishment pieces that help me to better tell the story. Adding the rub on word 'sunshine' I think was my favorite 'oh look there' moment when I realized that together with the frame I said, "hello sunshine" (that came about completely by accident). I haven't added in the journaling yet but it's never to late to add that in when the right words come to mind. 
So there you have it, a layout representing home life - it's sad to say but I think this is the first layout that is solely about our house/home and we've been here now going on 3 1/2 years...that's completely uncalled for

*note to self*

this is a huge part of our life and our journey and for sure our girls' journey - we'll probably never have another house while they are living at home so it would certainly be important to document some of these bits and pieces for them.
Anyways food for thought this weekend and hopefully while you contemplate that you'll get a little creative time in to. 

Until next time...
Be calm and scrap on!

just B 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hello Kitty

Hello Hello
How are you today? Were you able to make it through Monday? I do hope so and without to many issues.
Today I wanted to share with you a layout and as some of you may know already I have found a new love in doing layouts. Now granted mine are really simple, I have not yet mastered the whole layering thing even though I totally love it so bare with me. The reason for my sharing this one is actually two reasons:
First of all I wanted to share how I mixed in some 'everyday pieces' on this layout. The first one I used was a Valentine's Day card (pictured above) that my older daughter had taken to school on Valentine's Day a few years back. We had a couple of extras so I kept one for just this purpose because I thought that it would be a really good addition to a Hello Kitty layout and knowing that my youngest is also a huge Hello Kitty fan it wasn't going to go to waste. The card is one of those plastic or vinyl kind that has the double image and depending on which way you hold it you can see one image or the other, it's cool so I kept it and now I'm glad I did because it's darn cute. 
Secondly I used one of my younger daughter's coloring pages (pictured above) that she colored and I was quite impressed that she managed to stay within the lines for the most part (for a four year old that's pretty cool). I also really liked the two colors she used...so well in fact that that's what became my color palette, that is what got this page even started - was her Hello Kitty picture that she colored for me. Shortly after I had gotten the idea to keep both the coloring page and the Valentine's Day card I remembered taking this  Instagram photo while we were out one day so...low and behold...a layout was created, complete with photo and memorabilia.
Oh wait...I actually have a third reason that I just now notice...
the background paper that says Hello Kitty in the gray type (you can see it along the bottom of the page) is actually the packaging from some toy that one of them got for a gift, when I was opening the box I noted that I really liked the typeface that was used and so I kept it too. Crazy huh? Well in this case I suppose all of them worked out in my favor and with gray being such a hot color as of late, I'm even in 'style'... YES!!!
Alright so hopefully this gives you some more ideas to consider using as 'embellishments' rather than always thinking you need something 'new'. Don't get me wrong I love 'new' probably way more than I should, but for those wanting to keep their budget's from getting to crazy this is a really good alternative and also a more 'documentative' piece to add or at least to include. In my mind the coloring that I used that my own daughter colored...is way more meaningful and descriptive of her than any sticker or stamp that I own or could buy so why not use it? I'm just saying is all...it's your call. 
Truth be told, I have found it really hard in the past to use actual pieces of ephemera from our everyday world (newspaper clips, ticket stubs, receipts, etc.) because typically it doesn't match one bit to what I already have going on but after having done this layout I am excited to try again with other things that I've kept over the years just to see what I CAN do with them.
Hope this helps
-until next time-
Craft On

just B   

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Cute Mini for My Cutie

Hello Hello
Just wanted to pop in real quick and remind you of how simple this hobby really can be.
I happened to be at Office Max a few weeks ago and they had several scrapbook items on clearance and so I went for it, thought it'd be an inexpensive yet fun summer project for both of my girls.
Now they actually had the chipboard book and then separate papers that were already cut to the shape of the book (which I can't say I've ever seen before) so granted that saved me quite a bit of time, but once I had all the papers adhered to the pages the rest was super fast.
Not only did I get the book and the papers, I also grabbed the black quote stickers, the puffy stickers, and the silver letter stickers. Other than my photos that I printed off at home later that evening, I don't believe I used anything other than what I bought on clearance.
Now is it the best I've ever done?...
honestly even I can admit it's not the 'best' mini book I've ever put together but you know what?
It is cute and more importantly it's done, the memories have been documented before everyone forgot and for that I really don't care that it's not the best. It's also for my four year old who absolutely loves it and looks at it quite often and that makes me smile. Besides that anything more eventually over time would just get ruined with little hands constantly looking at it, and carrying it around, and showing it off to anyone and everyone...right?
Right!
So if you've been sitting on the fence for awhile about whether or not this is the hobby for you, try a few items that are on sale or better yet clearance, sometimes stores will offer smaller packs of papers, grab a few stickers that match, a tape runner...and with a little bit of imagination and some memories printed into photos, you could also very easily make your own mini book.
It's just a thought...oh and by the way very soon I hope to be able to aid you in your search for an inexpensive scrapbook 'kit', when I have all the details figured out I will make sure to let you know.
Until next time, thank you so much for sharing in my passion.

Have a fabulous weekend!
just B

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Insta Stories

Hello Hello
Oh my goodness-the last day of summer-where has it gone?
Actually everyone around here is okay with it, the older one is ready to see her friends again and the younger one can't hardly wait to start preschool so...
For today I wanted to share a quick mini book that I did right at the beginning of summer break just to document where my oldest is at, at this point in her life. I seldom get any good, by good I mean in focus and with her actually not sticking her tongue out at me, candid shots of her so these photos although they represent her they span about a year and a half rather than just a 6 month period as I was aiming for. But oh well, it still captures a time in her young life which is the whole point.
What I started with is the mini book, I used chipboard for the covers and black card stock for the inside pages then bound it using my bind-it-all; then I printed the Instagram photos that went along with the random facts that I wanted to remember about her right now. Once I had all the photos in I printed this journal card from Ali Edwards that I purchased from Designer Digitals to the size that I needed it and adhered one to the back of each page and then wrote in what it was specifically about that detail that I wanted to remember. 
Along with the picture I added in a tab to the right hand side to give a bit of a foreshadowing as to what the journaling will be about once you turn the page.
Now had I really given it some thought beforehand, I would have made sure that the journal entry went on the same page as the photo that I was documenting but it just didn't happen that way so this was the next best option at that point.
I do like that this whole book, even with a ton of photos and a ton of details about my oldest daughter, has remained quite small. There is something to only documenting with words and photos which Ali Edwards is so passionate about, fitting that I used her product for this particular project.
Anyways just a quick reminder that it doesn't have to be super elegant, over loaded with embellishments, or 100 pages long. It can be as simple as 10 pages or 6...with a single photo (that has not been edited) and a few words that tell a little bit more of the hidden truth.
I think that for years to come this will not only be a favorite of mine but a favorite of hers as well, and I have plans to do one exactly this same way for my youngest daughter too because it is way to soon that 'normal' changes and then you just can't quite seem to remember 'the way it use to be'.
So my challenge for you this week or possibly over the weekend is to make just a super simple mini book: use an empty cereal box and paint it or cover it with some interesting papers (magazines, newspapers, etc.) cut it to the size you want it to be (my book is 3 x 3), cut to the same size as your covers however many pages you want to fit inside them then print off some random photos...once you've added them to your pages use a separate sheet of paper and cut to size some journal spots and adhere those to the page opposite of the photo and then jot  down some details about the photo, last but not least take a hole punch and punch two holes along the left hand side and then use an old shoe string or an old hair and/or clothing ribbon and tie the pages together with a cover on the top and a cover on the bottom. 
I'll tell ya you will love it in the end and if you're worried about having the right photos...don't. The way to fix this is to grab your camera whichever one you feel more comfortable with and then start snapping some pictures, 'things' are the best to start. Ask yourself 'what are they in to right now?' take a picture of it-it might be: clothes, a book series they are reading, an app on their iPod or phone, toys they love, games they like to play, things they like to do outside, then maybe start including some of their friends or hobbies. There are so many cool ways of getting just a bit of information that will help you bring this person's individuality into perspective and then spot-light it just for them. I'll have a hard time believing that they won't appreciate it as some point...so...give it a go!
Thanks so much for stoppin' in and have fun getting your Insta stories told.
just B

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Spread Your Wings

Hello Hello
How's your weekend so far? Are you gettin' crafty? I wish I were but I'm doing the next best thing...
I'm making homemade salsa this weekend and believe you me, it is GOOD! I'm hoping to have maybe a dozen or so pints when it's all said and done.
Oh and my oldest daughter and I went school supply shopping, nothing like waiting until the last minute but it's still always a favorite in our house.
So today I thought that I'd share a layout that I did a few months back, it's not super embellished and there's not a lot of product on it but I still really like this one and the reason being...
all the actual products used: colored card stock, pattern paper, foam stars, stickers, and even the thread have been in my stash for over 5+ years and I finally used them and I like them even though they are old. 
The reason I like 'em so much is because I was able to use 'new' ideas along with those old products and so now to me they look 'fresh'. The first idea was to use the thread and sew directly on the page, something I have done before and will certainly do again, especially when I can take the stitch right through the middle of another element (the blue foam stars) love this and it makes me want to drag out all of my foam pieces. The next idea was stamping directly on the layout, now this I don't normally do because I'm always afraid I'll screw it up but ya know it all worked out okay. The last one that I want to point out is the over spray that I did all over the layout, it adds that distress to it that I love but in a completely new way. I accomplished this look using Tim Holtz's Distress Marker Spritzer here, this little tool is so awesome, it adds a whole extra layer to your project without the bulk and if you are wanting to add some strength to your hands, just sit and use this tool for a while and you'll certainly build some muscle, but honestly for the price I love it. 
A few other bits and pieces here and there, some stenciling done in the upper right hand corner using spray mist, the addition of some wood veneer pieces, and then some of Tim's Findings from his Idea-ology line to complete it.
So there you have it, just a few more ideas on how to use up some of those older products, just add in some new and shake it up a bit you'll see - it'll be 'fresh' and look 'new'!
Thanks for comin' by, hope your creative juices are hot and heavy this coming week and until next time...
craft on!

just B 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Carte Postale for Grandma

Hello Hello
So sorry for the late post this week, trying to get all of our loose ends tied up before school starts back up next Thursday, just another week of summer...where did the time go?
I swear that every year it goes faster and faster.
Real quick I wanted to show you one of my newest mixed media pieces. I made this about a month ago for my grandma's birthday. She has always been in my corner, cheering me on no matter what it was I was pursuing at the time and I just wanted her to know that I appreciate it more than she will probably ever know.
So I started with a medium sized paper mache book here and painted a double coat of white gesso here on it, let both coats dry completely and then I added in all of my texture.  
Now as far as texture goes, pretty much anything goes. Some of my go-to favorites are paper doilies, cheese cloth, metal jewelry pieces (like jump rings-anything flat really), also die-cuts work well, sticker letters, crochet trims, beaded pearls, quite honestly anything really. 
Now to get everything glued down sometimes can be the tricky part, so I use a combination of hot glue and a gel glue, the gel glue that I have on hand right now is: Beacon 527 but there are several on the market that would work just as well. The thing to be careful of is to not get carried away with too much on any one piece. I know from experience that with the 527 glue a little goes a long ways, especially with the smaller embellishments. Now another adhesive I use and this works best with your fabric pieces: cheese cloth, crochet trims, etc. is matte gel and you quite literally want to paint the whole piece with it, lay it on your project and then cover it again with another coat, of course making sure you use a fairly fine brush so you can get into all the details of your piece because you don't want to lose that texture.
Once I had all my textures in place and completely dry, I then went back in with my color sprays, I use Tattered Angels mostly with a few others but I really don't have a preference so long as their is lots of glimmer or shine, and spray from the outside in. And I usually start with my lighter colors first. Now at this point I've already had a lot of wait time and I don't really like to wait so I use my heat tool to dry the spray so that I can get on to the next color and from here you just go until you like what you see. After that if you wanted you could add a few extra pieces or call it finished; in my piece I added the pearls and the decorative accoutrement, along with the faux leather belt that closes the entire piece. To add these pieces on afterwards I normally use the Beacon 527 glue because it does dry clear and it's quite a bit tougher than hot glue.

So there you have it, mixed media in my very limited experience and know-how. If you have any questions please comment me and I will be happy to answer them the best I can. Until next time, thank you so much for stoppin' in a takin' a peek.
Have a fabulous weekend!!!

just B 

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Jas' Bloomin' Box Mini

Hello Hello
How's it going? To early to tell...
well I hope that you are inspired to do what you love today!
I am going to share with you a mini book that I made a little over a year ago for my youngest daughter. I suppose you could call it a bloomin' box mini.
It quite looks like a box that once it's fully open...bloomed. The way that I created this was to first take two sheets of heavy weight card stock, cut one of them to the size that I want the finished size to be, then for the second one I cut it down by 1/4 inch of the first and literally set it inside the larger one. The only part of these two boxes that are attached together is the middle square. Everything else needs to be free to open and/or close. 
With that being said, as you can hopefully imagine, all four sides of both boxes will open and lay flat...essentially. Granted you have to open each side -'layer'- as it comes because that is the way that I designed it but you get the idea.
In this photo above you come to the very center of the inside box, and so for that I included this adorable Memory Box dress die adhered to a tri-folded journal card that I included the photos that I wanted to display in this particular piece.
The journal card actually has a circle Velcro dot added to it so that it will keep the card closed while you attempt to open the boxes.
Then just like the outer boxes you have to open the journal card also to find the surprise inside.
This is the box when it's fully open, all four sides resting at ease and the journal card revealing it's secrets...
It's rather a fun project and let me tell you, my daughter was absolutely in awe of this mini book when I finished it for her and said, 'here you go sweetie'. I think she carried it around for almost 2 months. 
top panel of larger box
top panel of smaller box
bottom panel of larger box
bottom panel of smaller box


Another part of this piece that made it all worthwhile to me is that I didn't buy anything new for it, all the papers that I used are actually several, several years old - same as the stickers that I used - some of the embellishments pieces as well and you know what...
It didn't matter one stinkin' bit.
I love that - in fact I think I mentioned that last week some time that it's okay to use those older products in something new, honestly, who cares that it's not the latest and greatest? The point is that you are documenting a memory, giving it a voice and making your story matter and in the end that really is all that truly matters because you matter.


right side panel of larger box
right side panel of smaller box
left side panel of larger box
left side panel of smaller box
So there you go, My bloomin' box! I hope you like it and give it a go for yourself.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend 
***remember***

live your passion

and

tell your story!

Thanks so much!
just B