Wednesday, August 11, 2010

My Blog Is Like A Box Of Crafty Chocolates...

because you never know what you're going to get! Last week it was felt food and this week, all of a sudden I'm back into scrapbooking. I did maybe two pages all of the past year total, and here in the last two days I've been cranking them out. I guess it just depends on my mood. Either that, or the fact that up until this evening, both of my dogs had more complete scrapbooks than my son did. Feeling mommy guilt much?

Here's the first page I did. Ooh, isn't he CUTE??? My husband said he doesn't look like he's almost two in this photo, he looks more like he's about to start kindergarten. I asked that boy who the heck told him he could get so big, and do you want to know what his reply was? "ME!" I kid you not. Smartypants.

I based the design of this layout on one of the Starting Blox that my friend Susan designs for the Scrapy Land Blog.

She is seriously a treasure trove of great ideas and information. Totally worth stopping by and checking out. I used the Scotch tape trick that she taught me for sticking down die cut letters a LOT in the past couple of days. Her sketch is for a 12" x 12" page but luckily I'm pretty good at converting those in my head to the 8 1/2" x 11" pages that I prefer.

A lot of times people will feel that they have to match their papers to their photos exactly or the layout won't look right. If you notice, I used a paper that features a nice turquoise prominently and there isn't a speck of blue anywhere in my photo. It works because the brown ties it in and I didn't try to use too many other colors. It's pretty much brown, turquoise, and gold.

I was painting that little metal star in the corner when I realized that my acrylic paints are starting to dry up. So sad! My espresso Dabber was a solid mass when I opened the bottle. No wonder it would not squeeze through the applicator cap.

The stamp under the metal star is one of those 7 Gypsies self inking stamps. It says 100% Certified Authentic around the edge of the circle, and in the middle, it used to say It's A Girl. Yeah, I totally took my X-Acto knife to that part of the rubber and I think it has a lot more uses now. I altered some of the other ones like that too. Don't be afraid to alter stuff to make it work better for you!

A page about the boy's rows of little toy cars. (Click to enlarge any of these) You'll notice I'm using a LOT of old product. That would be because I have a lot of old product in my house that needs using! I figure, I'm not submitting these for publication, and it will all be old product by the time he is old enough to appreciate them, so who cares, right?

I ran that piece of Making Memories Noteworthy journaling paper through the printer. I was sure happy to find some repositionable Hermafix in a drawer, because this printer won't take Scotch taped bits of paper like my old one would!

I cut out the titles for the first three layouts using Quickutz dies and an Epic Six. Bubba decided that it was his job to turn the handle on the machine, going as far as shouting "MINE!!!" at me and swatting my hand away. I don't know who taught him "mine" but I'd like to let them know they did a fine job because he has a firm grasp on the concept all of a sudden.

The journaling for this one was also done on the computer. I just make text boxes in the size I need in MS Word, print, cut them out, and paste them on the page. The font here is CK Jot and I underlined it so it would look sort of like I had used one of those cute journaling stamps. I like to computer journal because it gives me the option of getting my spacing just right for whatever it is that I'm doing. I can also pick fonts to go with the mood of my page and colors to coordinate.

This photo cracks me up. What should have been a layout about my son's first visit to the pool this year turned into one about him scowling at the camera like he was Clint Eastwood or something. It just goes to show you that you can use pastels on a boy layout.

I would not even bother trying to read this one if I were you - you might go blind. What I did was to go back and take the journaling from this blog post and put it on a page in Photoshop. I based the design around one I saw that Ali Edwards did. I think she used to sell a digital kit for it, but honestly, this is so simple and straightforward it was not hard at all to recreate. It's just lines and plugging in a few photos!

This is a great example of how you can use your blog as a tool. Sure, I could have journaled Bubba's birth story from memory and my perspective today, but I would have lost some of the detail and emotion that I was able to capture when I did it right after it happened. There's no way I would have been able to make this page when he was two days old, which is when I wrote the content. The only thing I had to do here was resist the temptation to edit my words by adding stuff here and there. I did cut out a few sentences here and there for the sake of trying to get it all to fit on one page, but for the most part, it's exactly how I posted it on my blog. It's honest.

The last eight pages are the first four double page layouts in a series:

I wanted to have some sort of continuity with those benchmark photos I took his first year, so what I did was cut the sheet of number paper into one inch strips, painted a bunch of chipboard numbers orange to coordinate then made gave them a coat of Diamond Glaze to make them dimensional/glossy, and finally, made a template in Photoshop to hold six smaller photos. The template has frames in colors that coordinate with the patterned paper strips. I just resize the photos for that month, drop them in the template, and print on photo paper - no trimming required!

Each month will have a 5" x 7" benchmark photo and six photos from that month. Originally my plan was to have six photos from the birthday photo shoot that month, but then I found that some months, I didn't really take very many photos. Especially there in the beginning! Therefore, I had to mix in other pictures from that month. As I get through the first year, you'll see less of the filler photos and they'll all start to be the ones with the dark chocolate background.

When I did these pages, I made the discovery that both of my bottles of Diamond Glaze had thickened. One I just had to toss, but I was able to get enough from the other to finish my numbers. They're not as smooth and bubble-free as they normally would be, but they're okay. I also was out of ones in those Basic Grey chipboard numbers, but then I realized that a lowercase "l" looks a lot like a number "1." I did end up having to trace and cut out two from chipboard, but hey, that's better than five!

So, that's thirteen pages, or nine layouts in two days. That's not too shabby!

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Blogger Katy said...

I can't decide if this motivates me to scrapbook, or hide away my supplies forever! These are just incredible!

6:11 AM  
Blogger Susan said...

CUTE pages Sarah!! Way to go for crankin' 'em out!!!! Glad my Blox provided an inspiration for one of them and thanks for the plug!

Love your monthly pages that are two-pagers! GOOD STUFF...keep it going! And let's plan to scrap soon!


11:20 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Dang - cute pages, lady! I especially like the rock star one. Way to rock the old stuff!!

12:34 PM  
Blogger Kat said...

These look amazing! I love the monthly ones soo much! I might have to steal that idea later on :)

6:30 AM  

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