Contest entry

Just a plain simple contest entry for a recent Scraptastic Club blog post. I wasn’t that trilled with the lucky theme of the May 2014 kit and wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it. Best idea? Use up all the specifically lucky themed items in one big embellishment grouping. Since I spent this past weekend feeling very lucky about how our family makes its way in this world, I chose that topic to write about. I left it without a photos to just let the words speak. And that works well for the challenge.

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Card that doubles as a gift

I made this card for a family member who lives far away. I thought she could use some cheering up so I wanted to send flowers. But fresh bouquet deliveries are so expensive and they just die. So I made a paper bouquet instead! Plus the flowers pull out of the card and can be used as decor items or even bookmarks. How crafy of me ;)

(Remember that post about trying to get more blog posts done even if the image quality is low? Well here is that low quality, color uncorrected image I’m talking about. Uggh. I don’t know if this is going to work for me long term.)

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Layout Roundup- Oct STC kit

And the roundup of layouts I made with the October Never Tear Us Apart STC kit. I had the kit plus the pattern paper add-on. Another 8 layouts for this one. I had 2 full sheets of pattern paper still left over so the extra paper did help some, but not as much as you might think. I did struggle a bit with the alpha included. I didn’t have enough letters to make most of the titles I wanted so I turned to adding hand lettering, abbreviations and even my Cricut for title boosts. I’m not really a fan of hand titling, though hand journaling feels just fine. I want my titles to more clean and formal than what I can do by hand most of the time.

These first two here you haven’t seen before and they were the first two layouts I made with this kit way back when the kit was fresh in my hands. Fresh kits are so inspiring, yet hard to cut into those whole sheets of paper for fear they may be better used in some future way. I’m trying to get over that! Having a second set of pattern paper sure helped with that feeling.

The next 3 you’ve seen the layouts before even if in slightly different photographs. Using the same personally made sketch to repeat the same subject layouts for different people is one of my time-saving go-to tricks. More details on these here.

And finally 2 of the most recent from this kit. Using up some of the last of the kit. Remember in my card post yesterday that I mentioned how much I like the chevron paper? Well here it is again! (Inspired by this sketch.)

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Scraps into Cards #2

So I killed another STC kit and made cards with the leftovers. In addition to my kit scraps I only added in a stamp set by Lawn Fawn called “So Much to Say”, ink and pen-work.

To make these cards I had quite a bit of leftovers as I used the October kit and had ordered extra pattern paper. I am discovering that the paper to embellishment balance in the kits has varied for me quite a bit. Ordering the extra paper for this kit was unneeded. Plus, I have to admit that there was a sheet of paper in this kit that I did not like at all. That pink dog paper in the bottom photo. Not my thing at all. Neither was side “b”. I guess they can’t all be winners. I hope future kits don’t have something that makes me dislike it as much as I disliked that dog paper. But… that dislike was balanced with an uber like. That multicolor wood-grain chevron paper was THE BEST. Noticed I used pieces of it on 4 of the cards. I still have some left to play with later. Yeah!

And here is what I still had leftover. Everything has been sorted and filed. And that dog paper… straight in the donation bin!

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Layout Roundup- Sep STC kit

Here are the layouts I got out of the Scraptastic Club September kit. I got 8 layouts out of one kit. I think that is pretty good. Yes some of them are minimal. But it does the job!

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Scraps into cards

Here are the results of the card making I did that I talked about in my last post. I used scraps leftover for a kit club kit. As I end each kit I have decided to create cards. At this point I think most of these cards will be gifts or donations. I like to just play and create but don’t have a million people to send cards off to. This way I can play and create with things that might otherwise go wasted and turn it into smiles for someone in need. Win-win-win.

So along with those scraps I also added a bit of ink, some washi tape, enamel dots and a stamp set.

My favorites are the one on the far left and the “family” white on white card, right back. Some are less than favorite, but that is okay. Everyone’s taste is different and what I don’t like may make someone else smile!

This batch of cards went off to my brother who is currently stationed in Kuwait. He can use them for himself or share this out with his fellow soldiers. I included envelopes and stamps so it takes no money for a soldier to send a card home to a loved one. Sweet!

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Road Blocks & Solutions

One of the things that keeps me from blogging more regularly is getting the quality and quantity of photos I want to post. Taking them, transferring to the computer, editing and uploading all seem to bog down my process. So I have options in dealing with that.

  1. Don’t blog.
  2. Blog less often.
  3. Use less photos.
  4. Use convenient but lower quality photos.
  5. Make photo taking a priority in my crafting experience.

I’ve done plenty of #1 & #2. But I’m wanting to change that (we will see how it goes!). Number 3 doesn’t work for me since this hobby is a largely visual one for me and many others. Maybe one day #5 will be an option. But for now I am going with #4. I will be using my phone to take more photos which automatically upload to my dropbox account and can easily be loaded onto the blog. So you will see more low light and poorly composed photos.

I’m working to kill my September Scraptastic kit that I have been meaning to get to. I’ve decided that I will end each kit with a batch of card making. Here is a photo of what I have to work with. I will follow up with a post of the projects that I made.

I had bits of paper left, plenty of tags, plenty of alpha stickers and just a couple of other little goodies. I added in plenty of plain cardstock for bases and a few items from my stash. Stay tuned for the final results.

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Working a backlog

With holidays, illness and injury I have a backlog of Scraptastic Kits sitting on my desk. I started the club in September of ‘13 as I talked about here and here. I’ve been really pleased with the usability, trendiness and quality of the kits that have come in the mail, even though I haven’t touched most of them. Well, the past two weeks have changed that! I worked a little bit from each of the backlogged kits and I have to say that I’ve loved most of what I used. Let me show you a sampling.

This one cam from the December Just Breathe kit + extra wood veneer + extra cut apart sheet. I used the sketch featured in Scraptastic’s blog about teaming up with Page Maps to provide a sketch challenge. I really enjoyed using the sketch. My process usually involves drawing up my own sketch before I start a page. But for these photos I had a really lackluster idea. This Page Maps sketch fit my two small photos perfectly and added some pizzazz to my layout that I don’t think I would have come up with on my own.

Then from the October Never Tear Us Apart kit, I made two layouts using the same basic sketch (my own). I don’t mind making very duplicate layouts when they are stored in separate albums. I’ve done this before and I’m sure I will do it over and over again. It saves me energy and I can get more scrapped! I just made slight adjustment to accommodate different numbers and sizes of photos. When I use lots of pictures I keep the layout very simple to let the photos and story stay central.

Here is one more set of duplicate layouts using the October Never Tear Us Apart kit. I was running low on the large alpha stickers for titles in this kit so I used them to emphasize the date and made a more detailed title on the Cricut and cut it from some of the colorful chevron paper for more interest. On the second layout I added in scraps of pattern paper on the left hand side to add more detail and to fill in the “gap” that was used for extra journaling on the first layout. Plus using bits of pattern paper helped me use a sheet of pattern paper (the blue and pink stripes, reverse side is pink and white scottie dogs) that I really didn’t like at all, neither a nor b sides. I can throw in bits of my less favorite items to still use up the whole kit without feeling like the “ugly” product is ruining my page. (I have to say this is the ONLY thing so far I have really disliked in a kit.)

Hope you enjoy.

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Thursday Challenge 1/2/14

Over at the Scraptastic Blog, they post a challenge each Thursday. I’ve been meaning to jump into their challenges but life has been crazy. But I managed to get this one done using my December Just Breathe Scraptastic Club Kit + extra wood veneers + their Awake My Soul stamp set. The challenge was to look back at posts from 2013 and scrap-lift one of the mentioned designs. I chose the first one listed since it is a design style I used often. Not necessarily a challenged but it certainly inspired me to make something when I haven’t scrapped for a few weeks!

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Scraptastic Club introduction

In my last post I talked a bit about joining this new monthly kit club. Today I would like to fill in some of the details.

I chose the Scraptastic kit club on it’s price point, flexibility and a review of their previous kit contents. I was looking for something affordable, something to give me just a taste of new goodies and something that had a social aspect to it. Here is how this club works…

  1. You can choose from 2 different membership options. The first is a Project Llife style kit and the second is a standard scrapbooking kit.
  2. The standard scrapbooking kit has 2 kits to choose from every month. At this point, you get a preview of items via email then email back your specific kit choice.
  3. The PL kit is $28/month and the standard kit is $25/month.
  4. Shipping is $7 and can include extras that you order for the month.
  5. This is a no commitment club and you can cancel at any time. If you want to skip a month, you can cancel and rejoin the following month. However, each time you order back-to-back kits you get a goodie in the 2nd month’s kit. For example if you order October’s kit, then order November’s kit, you will get a freebie in the November kit.
  6. There are extras available each month including add-ons for each main kit as well as extra embellishments that can be purchased to include in your shipment.
  7. There is a blog with challenges, design team inspiration and a social forum all as part of this club.

So I have used their kits for one whole month now–the month of September–and here are my first impressions…

  1. The kit is really reasonably priced.
  2. I like being able to add on a couple of extra little items, such as wood veneer (a favorite of mine!) when I like what I see in the email preview.
  3. My first kit (September 2013) came with a tiny Basic Grey alphabet. While there were plenty of letters to work with I found it a challenge to make titles with such a small font. This challenge was both a positive and negative experience in that I liked having to think outside the box and also in that I didn’t like having to come up with a new way to do eye-catching titles for each layout. Also I didn’t like the quality of the BG letters. Many of them peeled off their sticky backing as I was working with them. This was especially true when I recolored the stickers to fit my layout, though letting them dry longer may have helped solve this a bit.
  4. I have lots of little tags leftover to make cards or to tuck in my stash for later. I like having these little bits as extras. The meant I felt like I had enough pieces to work with.
  5. I made 8 layouts with this kit! That is more than I thought I would get. Some of them are very very light in embellishments but that isn’t bothering me. Like I said I had plenty of pieces to work with so it was a color and design choice to make these layouts sparse.
  6. I got tired of seeing the same colors over and over again in the embellishment supply (mainly tags)… red, blue and pink. I found it hard to mix up layouts enough to feel like they had their own color scheme.

I’m already noticing differences in the October kit as I start to work with it. So I can compare and contrast the two kits as I draw to a close with the October kit.

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