Friday, November 30, 2012

Lots of Carta Bella Projects

When I first saw Carta Bella's Paris Girl online, I thought it was too much pink to work with, but once I got it and had the chance to play with it, there's lots of pretty shades of pink, mauve and grey with black accents.  And just like all their 12x12 collection, the paper is very thick with texture.  Beautiful collection.

Did a couple of quick projects.  This first one is a birthday card.  This card was quick by keeping the background simple and adding the clusters along with the small round stickers to spell out the sentiment.  Using pop dots, the doily, stitching, ribbon (seam binding), and the cut out vellum butterflies added interest and softness to the card.

 This next project is a layout.  I picked out the background paper first, decided on doing an 81/2 x 11 (one of my most favorite sizes), and matted it with the black polka dot paper.  I usually like lots of contrast in colors whenever I create anything, so that is how I choose my papers and embellishments.
 I did the fussy cutting of the banners from the pattern paper next, and pop dotted the one on top for more dimension.  I picked out a simple pattern paper where the photo would go...then matted the photo with a simple grey pattern.  Layered the stickers and doilies around the photo to frame it.
 Thinking of a title with how sweet Emma is on her Dad's lap waiting for ballet to start...I came across this design (last day for all designs at $.50) in my Silhouette Studio software...and really could not be more perfect with the collection.  I did purchase that little Eiffel tower just to use with this collection and adhered it with Zip Dry glue.
Such a pretty frilly collection...and super quick card and layout.

More Carta Bella...

Up on the Carta Bella blog this yesterday, a layout made with the Merry and Bright Collection.
It did not start out this was one that got cut apart and a re-do, then I liked it.

Jennifer Gallacher made this sketch based on my how this came out...think I may be using this design again.
And today on the Carta Bella blog is another layout using the Merry and Bright Collection.  This layout was inspired by the chipboard piece saying "Countdown to Christmas."
I wanted to have little windows cut out to decorate...and represent the last 12 days before Christmas.

So this is how this layout was made...

For my layout, I knew I wanted use little “windows” to represent counting down the 12 days before Christmas.  So I used the Silhouette Studio, opened labels (Design id #18632 
6/03/2011 4 labels by Lori Whitlockthat had to parts to them.  But instead of cutting them both as is, I cut the inside label out (in red), and used the sketch pen to draw the outer label (in green). 
It took a little bit of time to do because I needed them together to design, but then separated to sketch and cut.  So I selected and then grouped just the red inside labels and temporarily moved them to another new document.  Sent the sheet through to do the sketch of the green outside labels, then brought the red inside labels back to line up with the green, then had to select and move all the green to another sheet.   
A little more involved then just sending through once, but I love the effect it gave.  I backed each “window” (label) with pattern papers, then embellished.  Some have dates to mark the countdown.

I have winners to announce for the brand new Scrapwerk German published magazine from this blog post. Please email me at with your address, and I'll get a copy to you!  CONGRATS!

Diana Waite

I can't believe it is almost December...we are off to the big Mall to see Santa, ride the train, then go to the park to see Christmas lights...hope everyone has a great weekend!!!  

Monday I will have another Carta Bella layout and an awesome sketch from Becky Fleck to go with it.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

December Daily Cover and American Crafts Christmas Cards

I had some cards on the American Blog up last Thursday using the Kringle and Co collection.  This collection is so full of patterns and embellishments...the only problem is picking which to use.

So I picked an embellishment for each card, then focused on color combinations, dimension, and texture.  

This card did not start out this way...that entire bottom of the clustered embossed tree and embellishments was removed from a failed card.  Really didn't think it had any hope, then I had a lightbulb moment...I love the end result of a pocket for the tag...LOVE the reindeer.
I will be having a video up on the Carta Bella blog on Dec. 20th showing how I made these elongated hexagons.  I used them here on the hexagon shaped card that I also designed in Silhouette Studio...masked and misted with the negative sheet first, then layered the gave the background a little more texture.  For the card base, I just opened two hexagon shapes in Silhouette Studio, overlapped them a little, and welded them to make the card shape.
Lots of layering on this one...the design of the die cut was the start of the rest of the layering.
A much more simple design, but I love it...he looks more like a deer, not sure...but I just love the look of him and the knitted look of the tree and the snowflakes.  And notice the background paper...I used every bit of that it.
I started on my December Daily for this year.  Decided to go with a Studio Calico Handbook with the chevron pattern.  I painted one layer of gesso, then a layer of Martha Stewart's Pearl acrylic paint (my favorite, it is shimmery, but you can't tell from the photos).
I was planning on leaving the cover for last because the covers are usually the hardest for me to do.  But when I pulled out some of the die cuts from American Crafts Kringle and Co, they were perfect...
I had the cut bow from the Silhouette leftover from another glad I didn't throw it away.
I loved the simplicity of the front with just the added sparkle from the ribbon, the color from the twine, all from Kringle and Co, but wanted a little more used My Mind's Eye washi tape from the Ruby collection for the spine, then used an October Afternoon label as the "rug" under the sticker die cut tree from Kringle and Co.  Those Thickers are also Kringle and Co.
So very simple on the outside...on the inside, I'll be using the different pocket page protectors similar to Project Life and will use a mix of Kringle and Co from American Crafts, Make it Merry from October Afternoon, and Christmas Cheer from Lily Bee.
I've been cutting lots and lots on the Silhouette just to have some designs on hand.  Looking forward to my second December Daily...this is what I've learned from doing my first one:
  • For me having the supplies and some cuts from Silhouette ready works.  Preparing pages ahead of time doesn't come easy for me.  I have to have the photos to start.  It's like doing a Project Life spread without the photos, can't do it.
  • The format of a divided protector is less intimidating then a full scrapbook page.
  • Last year I did the December Daily literally day by day, took a picture everyday, that went into DD for that day.  That...was the stressful part.  I'm going to take pictures just like last year, but not worry about them going exactly on that day.
  • Remember to just take pictures, with your mobile phone or your camera.  Be mindful of what is around you (my number one reason why I love Project Life and December Daily).  Think about what you want to remember in the details.
    • Look for details: (I will credit Ali Edwards for some great ideas, and then I just ran with them and made them my own)
      • decorations in the city/town you live in
      • your decorations both inside and outside
      • with our little, girl, I also take pictures of her decorations
      • your childs' crafts projects (include them in your DD if you can, or take a picture and then print have it printed off to the size you need)
      • your pets by the decorations
      • the radio station that plays Christmas music all season long, take a picture of your car radio with the station displayed or take a picture of a favorite Christmas CD cover
      • the traffic, oh yes, take a picture of the long lines at the mall or post office
      • my favorite from last year was taking my big camera to the mall and taking pictures of displays, Santa, and the decorations...and...the shopping experience
      • baking/cooking - and/or including special recipes
      • wrapping
      • shopping online - take a screen shot or use your mobile phone
      • wish lists
      • Letters to Santa
      • YOU - last year I took a picture of my sparkly if you need to lose weight like myself, take pictures of the parts of you that you do like ;)
      • the family picture(s) for the holidays
      • your Christmas card
      • opening presents before and on Christmas (we like to open little gifts leading up to Christmas like hot chocolate, PJs, Christmas related items)
      • at your work.  I know I would have tons of crazy pictures from my office.  Take the little details like the decorations and if you have office parties
      • meeting friends and/or family and exchanging presents
      • reading Christmas stories or having Bible readings with the family
      • church activities (remember it doesn't have to be people, it can be the little details of the flier for the program, the decorations, the doors to the church, etc.)
      • community events - we have a couple of parks here that will have special lights and entertainment during the season
      • Starbucks - need I say more...the red cup include it, or ask for a small mini one to include, the snack bag, take a picture of that yummy peppermint brownie cake pop...before you eat it or it would be cute with a bite taken out of it ;)
      • If you have a DSLR and a nice lens, do this technique  I will have to have a separate post explaining how I got it to work 
      • TV Christmas specials...take a mobile phone picture of the screen...get up close to take it and take a few to pick the best one
      • Order online?  Take pictures of the packages coming in
Hopefully this gets you thinking and then you can run with these ideas and start taking lost of photos this season.  One last thing...about the ordinary days with nothing Christmas related, include those as well.  I am doing Project Life, so I will not have those as much in my December Daily as I did last year.  You will love looking back on your DD.

One last tip...we all do it...don't compare your DD to others.  Just like scrapbooking, DD is personal and meant for you and your family...make it and do it like YOU like it.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Project Life, Weeks 45 and 46

Whenever I look back on my pages in Project Life, it seems like these events were so long ago glad they are documented.

Week 45 - Emma was still not quite herself.  She was back to normal by Sunday evening.  Went to the doctor on Monday, and she has been fine since.
Left Side - Her artwork there in the second row is a huge piece on her easel, included it by taking an Instagram photo of it.  Love how we all went to vote glad I got that picture.
Right Side - It was just me and Emma over this weekend, so lots of time together outside, visited Aunt Lisa at work, did some shopping, which was a little stressful as she has wantitis ;) We had so much fun though except for the little tantrum.
Week 46 - Last week of school before Thanksgiving holiday.
Left Side - Included the photos I had taken from this post.  On that first card, I used this template.  They are free and come in handy.
Right Side - The Thanksgiving program at school, then a few more pictures from the week that I wanted to include.
I did a couple of different things with the Project Life Core kit for Week 46...I do it all the time when I scrapbook layouts or cards...I cut apart some of the cards, and used parts of them for borders around the photos.  You can see it more on the the last two photos on the left side spread.
Can't believe my first Project Life will soon be completed!

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Monday, November 26, 2012

American Crafts LO and Scrapwerk Magazine

Hope those celebrating Thanksgiving had a great holiday.  I spent it with my crazy little family...we had such a good time and good weekend.  Thankful for them and all my family and friends.
I have been printing some of the baby photos of Emma to scrap...again...yes, it really is okay to re-scrap a favorite photo...and this was my first favorite photo I took of her while in China.
I used the brand new American Crafts XOXO line, mixed in with a few tidbits of Dear Lizzy 5th and Frolic (love how different lines go together) and pulled out all of the gorgeous spearment, blue green color with pops of soft and vibrant pinks.  She has congee on her face, by the is basically over cooked rice with meats and vegetables...very good...similar to a porridge. 

I wanted to keep the layout soft, since this was when she was a I cut the title out of a soft green vellum.
Did lots of stamping, cutting and then placing where I wanted the arrows...
...and the heart...all from XOXO American Craft Line.
I really love the friends from all over the world I have met through this hobby.  Bina is one of them, and she was so sweet to ask if I would contribute to a brand new German is a published magazine called Scrapwerk...she gave me four extra copies.  Just leave me a comment and I will pick four lucky winners to receive a copy.  I'll close this on Thursday and post the winners on Friday so I can get this to you soon since there's lots of Holiday inspiration in this one.  
Thank you for stopping by, and hope everyone has a good week!

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving Program

We saw a big difference in Emma at this year's Thanksgiving program at her pre-school. Last year she cried, and the only way the teachers calmed her down was by telling her there were cookies after the program. She stopped crying, looked up and asked if they were chocolate. This year was no bribing. She is growing up...
The Indians and Pilgrims practiced a few songs before the performance.
Parents had to go outside while they got I took some photos the teepees they had this year.
Dennis was still working, so he had to take a call...
Last year, the program was two days because the pre-school is a tiny old house, and kids, plus parents and grandparents wouldn't fit...but we squeezed in this year, and this was the best group shot I could get!  Emma to the far left...
I had to just get my focus point set up, lift the camera in the air, and shoot and thankfully got some keepers...
She was ready to transform back into a princess...
Sometimes, even if a shot comes out all wrong, I keep it...the expression on her face here reminds me of when she was a baby.  She and her friend kept telling me no pictures...I didn't listen ;)
I finally got her though...
Emma has been making some friends, so proud of her...this is her with one of her best friends.  They were so sweet and cooperated for me...priceless...just makes me smile.  This very clingy, we had to play with her on the playground, hold her non-stop, cried when we left the room child of ours is growing up...
Won't be posting again until next week after Thanksgiving.  

Blessings to all of you and your families...XOXO

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Overlooked

I have been wanting to grab my DSLR and get some of the beautiful things I have noticed in our yard, but walk passed so quickly and then get inside and forget about.  So I put my 50mm 1.8 lens on and headed outside...

the flag Emma helped me pick out for Thanksgiving
the tulip tree we planted years ago and is just barely my height...none of us may live to see it fully grown
 most trees have lost their leaves, but there's already signs of new growth
 love the smell as I pass the sweet olive
 all the camellia bushes are blooming and leaving a bed of beautiful pink pedals on the ground (can you see the little bug in there?)
 the confederate rose tree damaged from Isaac came back but won't bloom this season probably, but the other one is in full bloom
 catching "the look" of Dennis pulling up with chickadee
 I couldn't  change my settings quite fast enough, an imperfect shot, but I totally love it...left it desaturated because I loved how it went with how sweet she looks coming to see what I am doing - and lately she likes to go with little to no clothes
 Emma loves to pick the flowers and then leaves them all over, some she gives to us
 beautiful Fall evening...what's not seen is Emma followed me outside with her camera too...
I know if you are in the US, you are busy getting ready for Thanksgiving.  I have some photos from Emma's school Thanksgiving program to share tomorrow...

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