Friday, 30 December 2011

Climbing Wall

I haven't done a workout at ScrapFIT since they teamed up with Sketchy Thursdays back in September, but a link on another blog led me back there for their workout #58 - to use mini pictures on a layout. I took these pictures of my children on a climbing wall with my mobile phone, and once I had figured out how to get them on to the computer they were disappointingly small - only 3.3cm x 4.4 cm at full size - but perfect for this challenge. I concentrated my layout into half the page and left plenty of white space:

Paper - Sandylion Biscotti, Basic Grey Mellow, HOTP Sandstone
Card - DCWV Neutral Stack

Goyt Valley

Another layout for Scrap Whispers - their Challenge 112 was to use a cluster of photos or embellishments on our pages. I used two clusters of three flowers on this layout, one of a series about a holiday in the Peak District:

The picture isn't great and it's hard to see the paper patterns - I'll replace it when I can take a photo in daylight.

I wasn't consciously scraplifting when I made this, but having looked at the Scrap Whispers blog again I see that Rosey's layout there also has three vertical panels of paper, so this must have been in my mind as I worked.

Paper - KaiserCraft Bumpercar, Glitz Design Laced with Grace, MME Wild Asparagus, First Edition Spring Feast
Letter Stickers - Basic Grey Hopscotch
Dewdrops (Flower Centres) - Papermania
String - from Stash

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

To Bounce or not to Bounce

As soon as I saw the last Scrap Whispers sketch (Challenge 111) I had a clear idea of the layout that I wanted to make, one with a single portrait photo and three panels of patterned paper, although I had no idea which photo.

I plumped for an old picture of my son and matched my blue and yellow paper to his clothes. I added some red to liven up the page, moved my title to the top and added my journalling on paper strips:
It's a very simple page, but I am pleased to have used up some VERY old supplies. The background paper is marked ©2002 but I think I've only had it for about three years; the patterned paper is from some old 5" x 7" pads of similar vintage but I cannot remember the manufacturer.

Paper - Sandylion Denim Paper, plus some from stash
Card - Papermania?, plus a white scrapbook insert
Stars - Hobbycraft
Letter Stickers - Craft Creations?

Friday, 23 December 2011

Beside the Sea

The days are whizzing by in the run up to Christmas and there isn't much time for scrapping. I did manage a layout for Creative Craft World last weekend but it's taken me until now to share it with you.

When I first saw this sketch I imagined scrapping a picture of my daughter with a scattering of flowers, but it turned out rather differently. Most pictures that I have of her are either portrait or part of a set and I didn't want to alter the sketch that much, so I went hunting for a single landscape photo.

I came up with a picture of my son on the beach and teamed it with a beautiful water colour paper:

I didn't want to cover up too much of the paper so I used translucent items for most of the layout. I matted my photo on vellum, punched the edges and drew a simple silver frame around it. Then I moved the title to be part of my row of circles and surrounded it with clear epoxy bubble stickers. The journalling spot is a postcard, a digital element that I printed out.

Paper - Park Lane Paper British Beach
Vellum & Stickers - from Stash
Journalling Spot - Long & Winding Road by Shimelle Laine for Two Peas in a Bucket

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Pagerize This

I am pleased and amazed to report that I won the latest 'Pagerize This' challenge (#16) on the Scrap Our Stash blog. It is basically a scraplift challenge and I blogged about my entry last week - see it here. It is now my job to supply a layout for 'pagerizing' this month (and to choose the next winner - eek!). 

This is the layout I chose - one about the Flåm Railway in Norway. It will be interesting to see what other people do with all my circles and how much embellishment they add to my very simple layout.

This challenge will be open until 12 January. If you want to play along, go to the Scrap Our Stash challenge post for more information.  

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Christmas Decorations

After my last somewhat mundane post, I thought I'd share something more Christmassy for the December 'Anything Goes' challenges at Scrap Whispers and Scrap Our Stash. I've had these frames for years - they were a freebie from Cross Stitch Crazy magazine and they came with charts to stitch.

Each December, I realise that I don't have time to stitch them and I resolve to do it in the Spring ready for next Christmas, but the months tick by until it's December again. Last year, I decided to fill them with patterned paper, but I couldn't find them anywhere. This year I found them, lost them again and finally found them again. I cut patterned paper to size and filled the frames. covering both the back and the front of each card insert so that if they twist round on the tree it won't be too obvious if you see the backs.

I used scraps of the Peppermint Twist collection from We R Memory Keepers for the tree and stocking. The stocking cuff is an old piece of velvety paper and the star is cut from an 8" x 8" Papermania paper from a mini Christmas album kit. I haven't added anything extra such as beads or sequins as I think they'd just fall off. Now to add them to the tree....

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Tour de France

Both Scrap Whispers and Scrap Our Stash have published an 'Anything Goes' challenge for December. This is supposed to make life easier at a busy time of year - any layout, card or project at all. However I find it much easier to create a layout when I have some parameters, whether these come from a sketch, a scraplift or a colour combination. They help to cut down all the possible layouts and give me a starting point to build on.

With no restrictions, I struggled to get started. I kept looking at various photos, waiting for inspiration to strike, but it didn't. Eventually I decided to scrap the next set of pictures chronologically going backwards, to fill in a gap in my 2007 album. This meant a multi-photo layout and I decided to just scraplift myself, making a duplicate of a recent layout. 

I started from the red, cream and aqua layout I made last week, played about with the photos and changed the colour scheme to make a new version:

I dropped the stitched border as I thought is was unnecessary on the patterned paper and I changed the orientation of the title. I bought the circles paper specifically for these photos at least 18 months ago but I've not got round to making the page until now.

These two pages will be in different albums so I don't think their similarities will matter. 

Paper - K & Co Hannah Scrap Pad, We R Memory Keepers Hoops
Card - DCWV Neutral Stack
Letter Stickers - American Crafts
Border Sticker - Crate Paper
Vellum - from Stash

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Paul and Emily

I have discovered yet another blog with some great challenges - Scrap Our Stash. Their 'Pagerize This' Challenge is a scraplift. The starting point was this layout from La Vikinga:
I took my inspiration from the bubble wrap stamped background and also used a single portrait photo with flowers, ribbon and black letters, but changed the rest of the colour scheme, and came up with this version:

Card - Papermania
Paper - free with a magazine
Letter Stickers - Papermania
Flowers - Paper Cellar
Dewdrops - Papermania
Ribbon - from Stash
Heart Stamp - Banana Frog
Paint - Wilko
Pen - Faber-Castell

ADDITION: This layout was published on the Scrap Our Stash blog on 11 December.

ADDITION: I won the challenge!! And set the next one. Why not join in?

Sunday, 4 December 2011

The Bridge

Another page for my Norwegian cruise album - the end is in sight. Just as well as it has taken me about two years so far. This layout is in response to the Colour Challenge on Scrap Whispers this week - to use red, aqua and cream. 

The photos were taken on the ship's bridge on the final day of the cruise so this will be the last page of the album. Lots of cruise-related papers use a red, white and blue colour scheme but I ended up using much simpler supplies rather than themed ones. The narrow horizontal strip of paper is cut from a travel paper - it was one of a job lot from Sunshine Scrapbooking so I don't know the manufacturer. I like the black and white number line which is reminiscent of the grid around a map or chart.

Paper - My Mind's Eye Wild Asparagus, HOTP (red - free with Scrapbook Magazine)
Letter Stickers - docrafts
Stamp for Journalling Spot - Kaiser Craft
Ink - Stampcrafts Colour Brushers
Embroidery Thread - Designs for the Needle

Saturday, 3 December 2011


I am finally nearing the end of my Norway album, and I added another page with the help of Shimelle's Sketch of the Week. Her sketch was quite plain and, although her finished layout had a lot more embellishments, I stuck with the simplicity of the original.

The main differences were painting a border around the block of photos and paper, and moving the journalling circle up to accommodate my longer title - by the way, Valbergtårnet is Norwegian for The Valberg Tower. This was an old fire watch tower in Stavanger. 

Cardstock - Unknown from Stash
Papers - Fancy Pants Papa
Border Stickers - Doodlebug
Letter Stickers - American Crafts
Paint - Folk Art - a mixture of Cocoa Bean and Yellow Ochre

Friday, 2 December 2011


I said earlier in the week that Pencil Lines had had two good sketches recently and this is the second - Sketch 261 from 27 November. 

I want to finish the album from our trip to Norway in 2009 so I adapted the sketch for three photos of Stavanger. I am working mostly chronologically in this album and the previous page was on double-sided cardstock so I kept the green background and used a mask with chalks to make the bracket shaped border. I made the circle a bit bigger to accommodate my pictures and moved the title down to the horizontal strip of paper. I also moved the punched circles and butterflies around. The patterned papers are both double-sided and have the same patterns in two colourways, co-ordination made simple.

Cardstock - First Edition Paper Spring Feast Pad
Paper - s.e.i. Dill Blossom - Dill Seed & Fennel
Letter Stickers - Authentique
Chalk - Readicut Crafts

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Birthday Card

The final challenge from Scrap Whispers for this month follows a tutorial from Rosey and an idea for using up those annoying leftover letters - the Qs, Xs and Zs that you won't use but can't throw away.

Her idea involves surrounding your title with random letters and spraying them with ink while making your title stand out from the background letters by using a strongly contrasting colour. She did this for a scrapbook page title but I thought it was best to start with a birthday card and see how I got on.

I don't have any spray inks so I decided to see what I could do with just ink pads. I started  by stamping my card with three colours of blue ink, straight from the ink pad. I then added an assortment of white foam letters and stamped over them; I just used white letters as I wasn't sure how well the ink would cover other colours. Finally I added my sentiment in red (and hacked an F to turn it into an I!).

I am quite pleased with the way that it turned out and may well repeat this with other colours in the future. Thank you Rosey.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011


It's been a while since I did a layout from a Pencil Lines sketch. They had a run of sketches that didn't inspire me, but the last two sketches have been much better. Firstly Sketch 260 from 20 November:

I stuck closely to the sketch and used a selection of papers from Pebbles with this photo of my baby nephew. The Pebbles papers are a mixture of old and new - some from the New Additions range and some older ones that I picked up in the January sales, plus I used the piece with bibs and bootees from Papermania. The journalling spot is one that I downloaded from Scrapbooks Etc and cropped to use just the top part.

EDIT (November 2013): Something about this page had always bugged me, and I couldn't work out what it was. Two years on, I've finally realised that the angles of the photo and the bib and bootee paper were the issue; I've now straightened them out and handwritten the journalling directly on the background.

Paper - Pebbles, Papermania
Letter Stickers - Crate Paper
Ribbon - from Stash
Bird Embellishment - Pebbles
Journalling Spot - from Scrapbooks Etc

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Rachel & Mark

Another challenge from Scrap Whispers - this one is a sketch:

As often happens, my layout evolved as I worked and I finished with this:

I started from two photos of my cousin's children which have a strong blue background. The spotty paper matched them well but was rather insipid for the whole page so I decided to use a panel of it with a bolder background, although that meant dropping the banner. I used that blue colour for a border between the two papers and then added more borders to the photos themselves. This all meant that the title looked better moved over to the right and I just added the date on the far right hand side.

Paper - Scenic Route North Shore Wipe Out, Sandylion Dots
Card - Core'dinations Royal
Letter Stickers - Stickopotamus
Letter Rub-ons - Doodlebug

Adventure Island

A second layout today, this time for Sketchy Thursdays.

I stuck pretty close to the original sketch, with a row of photos, a title and subtitle, various border stickers and paper strips for my journalling.

Paper - Sandylion Boy Oh Boy, HOTP Barnwood
Border Stickers - Doodlebug Fancy Frills
Letter Stickers - Sandylion Urban Vocab, Basic Grey Curio

Waiting for Dad

My Friday crafting day got cancelled so I have three part-prepared layouts to finish this weekend, all for challenges that end on Wednesday. The first is a scraplift challenge from Scrap Whispers. We had to scraplift this layout from Nilsa:

and this is my version:
I drew round a template for my bracket shape, and used a Fiskars border punch for the punched edging. Some tricky back-to-back border punching gave me the row of circles down the middle.

Card - Papermania Kraft basics, DCWV Neutral Cardstock Stack
Paper - Paper Adventures Forest Floor, plus some from Stash
Letters - Pebbles
Flowers & Ribbon- from Stash
Dew Drops - Papermania
Ink - Papermania

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

A Quiet Wednesday

Wednesday is normally a crafty day for me - I posted no less than three projects last Wednesday in a frenzy of Christmas crafting.

However today was quiet craft-wise - I am planning to spend Friday this week crafting with friends so, instead of completing layouts, I spent some time this morning putting together packs for three pages that I want to make. I've printed the photos and the sketches and pulled out the papers and letters that I think I want to use.

I used to take all my supplies (and the car) with me on days like this, but a bit of forward planning means that I should be able to walk to my friend's house, although I will be limited to the supplies that I have packed (or that I can scrounge). I wonder whether I will work faster because I have already chosen my papers so will just have to make them work, or whether I will be hankering after things I left behind and will leave my pages to finish off when I get home.

How do you plan for crafting away from home? What are your 'must take' items? 

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Preparing a Journal

Part of the reason for Shimelle's Christmas Crafting Weekend was to prepare your journal for her 'Journal Your Christmas' class. I am not doing this one, but I have recently decided to do her 'Scrap Your Day' class, recording my life on the 25th of each month next year. This originally ran in 2008-09 but the materials are permanently archived and accessible via the Free Projects button on her blog. I realised that by preparing the journal now, I have a much better chance of starting on time and keeping going through the year.

Shimelle has set two specific challenges for the journal:
1. Prepare your album and cut at least some of your background papers
2. Prepare a pocket for a page

After a shopping trip yesterday for cardstock and book rings, I have made a simple 6" x 12" album, and prepared some of the pages. I have stuck down birthday papers for May (as my birthday falls on the 25th) and Christmas papers for December. 

I have also cut some winter, spring and autumn papers to size but not stuck them down yet; I will wait and see which months they suit - e.g matching the snowflake paper to the coldest/snowiest month of January or February.

I am trying to use up free papers from magazines as they also often come with embellishment sheets which should make finishing the pages quicker and easier. 

I have also made the basic front cover with a pocket and left space to add photos or more embellishments later on. 

The pocket has several pieces of card ready for decorating and journalling. I want to explain why I am doing the album, and will probably add other thoughts as I go through the year plus pictures of things like my home which do not belong on a specific page. I have looped them together with string and tied them to one of the book rings so that they will not get lost even if they fall out of the pocket.

Supplies - Album
Cardstock - Bazzill (plus dark brown from stash)
Paper - Offcut from Stash, possibly MME?
Book Rings - Imagine That
Numbers - Pebbles
Letters - Basic Grey
Camera - atd
Border Sticker - Crate Paper

Supplies - Pages
May - DCWV, Pebbles
December - Bo Bunny Believe (free papers)
Winter - Unknown
Spring - Kay Miller Designs (free papers)
Autumn - The Autumn Wishes Collection (free papers)

Friday, 18 November 2011

Christmas Layout

The final challenge from Shimelle's Christmas crafting weekend was her Sketch of the Week, with a Christmas twist. Her version uses a border page cut up and used with the border in the centre, but the sketch looks a lot like a patchwork of papers:

I don't have any border papers so I went with the patchwork idea and used some Christmas papers left over from this layout, adding a circle of red crystals:

I will use this for a layout this Christmas, so there are no photos yet. I have a few smaller pieces of these papers and a co-ordinating striped piece, plus red or green letters, red ribbon and a journalling tag all picked out for completing this:

Check back in the new year for the finished page!

ETA: The finished page is now here.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Flowers Card

Another card for the Christmas Crafting Weekend - but this one is a birthday card. The challenge was to create a project with a design cut from patterned paper, inspired by a poinsettia card made by Pam Brown. I've been through all my Christmas paper and really don't have anything suitable for this, so I've gone for a flowery birthday card instead.

I cut three flowers from a paper pack that I got free with a card making magazine. The strip of paper comes from the same pack and I edged it with gold peel-off lines and added a gold peel-off sentiment.

Baubles Christmas Card

Another Christmas card for Shimelle's Christmas Crafting Weekend - this time the challenge was to make a card with either a circle design or using supplies in an unusual way, following a tutorial from Leah Farquarson. I chose to go with the circle design and returned to the Peppermint Twist papers that I used for my woven cards on Friday.
I started from a cream card and layered up a square of red paper, a scalloped circle of green paper and a circle of cream card. I cut the baubles from the embellishment sheet and added them and the sentiment on foam squares.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Christmas Tags

When I made my Christmas tag garland, I pulled out all of my Christmas stash, including die-cut shapes, peel-offs and ribbons that I didn't actually use. However they came in useful for the next challenge, to create a holiday gift tag that is easy to replicate.

I started from brown tags, leftover from that garland, adding strips of red ribbon, green die-cut trees and peel-off presents backed with red card. I finished them with peel-off sentiments and stars.

Christmas Tradition

As part of her Christmas Crafting weekend, Shimelle shared a post from Lain Ehmann about telling the stories behind the pictures - the stuff that no-one would know unless we wrote it down - and challenged us to document a holiday memory in our scrapbooks.

I deliberately took photos of my children decorating the Christmas tree last year for exactly that reason - to record my memories of tree decorating when I was a child and a tradition which I have passed on.

The photos and layout are fairly predictable:

 But the journalling was the important part (click for a larger picture if you cannot read this):

Paper - Craft Creations Christmas Scrolls/Holly/Stripes
Stickers- docrafts
Ribbon - Lindt
Peel-Offs - from Stash

Christmas Tag Garland

After a flurry of posts on Saturday morning, I was away for the rest of the weekend and at work Monday and yesterday. This leaves me with a whole load of projects to catch up with from Shimelle's Christmas Crafting Weekend. The first one up is a Christmas tag garland which will hang from my mantle-piece.

I mostly used some of the Welcome Christmas collection of papers and stickers from Pebbles, plus red, green and brown card. I've had the wooden pegs for ages as I find them too bulky for cards or scrapbook pages, but they work well here.

Some close-ups:
I've just realised that I hung the two Rs in 'merry' the wrong way round for the photos. I shouldn't have the same colour letters next to each other. Never mind, I'll get it right at Christmas.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Cross-Stitched Christmas Cards

I woke up this morning to discover that Shimelle has published three more Christmas Crafting challenges overnight. The first is to show your preparation for her 'Journal Your Christmas' class (which I am not doing); the second is a Christmas tag garland, which I may do before next Sunday's deadline; the third is to share a favourite project from Christmas past.

I don't do a lot of Christmas crafting, but we do still have these cards that I made for my children about seven years ago.

I cross-stitched the angel and penguin and mounted them on navy blue cards covered in snow mesh and white velvety fabric.

Woven Christmas Cards

Shimelle Laine is holding a Christmas Crafting weekend on her blog. The first challenge last night was to make a woven Christmas card following a tutorial from Melissa Mann. They are really easy, so I made two while watching TV.

I used two card blanks left over from a previous Christmas, rounded the corners and inked the edges of all of my paper strips. Melissa had sewed her strips of paper together but my sewing machine has died so I just used double sided tape. The papers are all from the Peppermint Twist collection from We R Memory Keepers, freebies from the current issue of Scrapbook Magazine.

Pencil Museum

Another layout using photos from 2007; this one is for Shimelle's Sketch of the Week last week. Luckily for me she didn't post one this week which gave me a chance to catch up.

We were at the Pencil Museum in Keswick so I chose to use up this piece of paper with coloured circles that I have had for about three years and regretted buying as it has never been suitable for any photos. The envelope embellishments were cut with my sister-in-law's Big Shot and I added coloured brads and black paint spatters to make the line of decorations on the sketch. It's not a favourite layout, but at least I've used that paper. I have another piece with squares on it. I wonder if it will take me another three years to use that?

Paper - Doodlebug School Dot Talk, Cosmo Cricket Homework, Black/White from Stash
Brads - HOTP
Letters - Papermania
Paint - Wilko