Top 13 in 2013

Sunday, December 29, 2013

This, I have to say, is one of my favorite posts of the year. I love going back through my pages, looking back at all I've created and accomplished. (Here's a peak at 2010, 2011 & 2012 if you're interested.)

I learned a lot about my personal style this year. More so than I have any other year. 

I now know:
  • I like to scrap photos in a variety of sizes.
  • Texture and dimension are a few of my staples
  • Transparency is something I love to play with
  • Metallics add drama and glamour to everything
  • Can't scrap without my Silhouette
  • Or edit photos without the help of RadLab
  • Adding just a touch of black & white to any page adds instant graphic appeal (and continuity to my pages...)
Which for me is huge! I've been scrapbooking for 16 years now. It's taken me this long to find all this out about myself and my crafting. It's helping me create better pages. And more of the kind I love.

So without further adieu, here are my 13 most favorite creations from 2013. (Click each photo to see that page's blogpost)

If I don't get back here before, happy new year! See you in 2014 =)

cheers & besos,

Christmas Postcards

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Happy Christmas y'all!! I'm in Ohio for the holiday. Hence these postcards below. 
Wishing you the merriest of days!

cheers & besos,

Bags & Tags

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Are yall tired of Christmas posts? Or Christmas in general? I hope not because I'm still enthused! Despite the fact that every last minute I'm at home means I'm working on projects. I am very very ok with this. It's only Christmas once a year =)

I made these gift bags and gift tags for those Ohio ornaments I blogged about earlier this month. I bought this great kraft wrapping paper at Target a few months back and used it to create these little gift bags simply by folding it in half and machine stitching along two sides.

Since these are going to Matt's family, I knew I wanted to use this great vintage photo of him and his sister for tags. I printed it black and white and used it as the base of the tag. Washi tape along the top adda a pop of red and I added a twist to these great Ali Edwards gift tags by printing them out on a transparency. I didn't want to cover up any more of that oh so cute photo.
It's something cut and small and festive. And it guarantees I won't be showing up empty handed. We're off to visit them in Ohio tomorrow. Excited for my (hopefully) white Christmas!

cheers & besos,

Brunch Invites

Friday, December 20, 2013

I wanted to do something different this year. Instead of giving my friends presents, I wanted to give them an to speak. We brunch semi-regularly. Everyone loves to eat and hang out. Chat and catch up. So I decided this year I'd take everyone to brunch. A first annual "Brunch on Us".

I put together these glorified invitations so they'd have something to open up. I had next to no time to make them. Actually, we were late to lunch because I was literally working up to the minute trying to get these done.
To be perfectly honest, I had no concept of what I wanted to do when I woke up that morning. I originally thought I'd put together micro mini books so I pulled a variety of photos and compiled them together for printing. But I liked the grid so much together that I decided to keep it.

And the cover, it was cut with my Silhouette. This "quote" rattled around in my brain as I was putting together the photo collage. So I thought it'd be perfect sentiment for my invite. Which is all about us being together anyhow.

I really quickly (and I mean really quickly) created the inside in PSE. But I like how it turned out. Maybe there's something to be said about not having time to second guess yourself.
I'm pretty sure my friends didn't know what to think of idea. But they liked the invite itself! They'll come around and we'll have more happy times in 2014.

cheers & besos,

Snowglobe Cards

Monday, December 16, 2013

It's here! It's done! It's in the box. I finally mailed off my 2013 Christmas cards. These things were a labor of love let me tell you. There's sooooo many steps involved in making them.

But finally, after 3 years of having this idea in my head. They're out and in the world! 

I present, a snow globe ornament.

These would not be at all possible without the help of my Silhouette. It seriously did all of the heavy lifting. I ended up using this design purchased from the online store. But did some serious editing in the studio software.
I feel like I threw just about every technique I could at these cards: letterpress, die cutting, stamping, heat embossing, confetti pocket, machine stitching. But it was well worth it.

The confetti inside is my favorite. I used a variety of speciality confetti/sequins, plus some punched shapes, glitter and even tiny bells. They jingle when they're moved.
For the backs, I heat embossed an Ali Edwards stamp (I also just realized I used that same stamp set for last year's Christmas cards. I guess that makes it super versatile!) with green powder and then stamped a few gold snowflakes around the edges. Matt & I signed the bottom of these with white ink and I added peoples names around the top.
The finishing touches are what took me the longest. Not stapling the ribbon or adding the twine. Nope it was printing out the address labels!!! I'm not even kidding you, everything but this was finished by the 1st of the month. But I just had this huge mental block about sitting at my desk to type up the labels. Finally, I got that done.
I decided to use these amazing gold dot bags as "envelopes" To keep them closed I used a plain jane return address label as tape. 28 of these suckers got mailed out today. They're zooming across the country as we speak =)

Christmas cards are my absolute favorite. I invest a whole lot of time and energy into them every year. But that's because I love to make them. If you'd like to share, I'd love to see your 2013 Christmas cards. Handmade or otherwise!

cheers & besos,

Ohio Ornaments

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

It's true. I love my Pinterest boards! I'm so visual and Pinterest is so visually awesome. I love looking at my boards, pinning projects for a later date, looking for inspiration.

I went through my boards the other day and decided to re-pin all the projects and recipes and layouts I have used [see it here]. Of the 4,003 images I've pinned, I've only used 59 of them! Doing the math fairly quickly, but that's barely more than 1%!!!

And the thing is, I love the things I pin. I want to use them. So this month and next year, I'm planning to do just that. Starting with this project:
State Ornaments: [Pin] [Original Source]

Aren't these adorable? I loved the Pinspiration and thought these wee lil hoops would be the perfect little stocking stuffers for Matt's family. We'll be in Ohio for Christmas this year and I'll be able to hand them out (in person!) then.
I went with Ohio State colors on this one, topped off with a silver ribbon. Stocking stuffers can now be checked off the list!

cheers & besos,

December Album

Sunday, December 1, 2013

It's December! How is it December?! No seriously, where did the year go? They say the older you get the faster they go. That must be true bc I feel like I blinked and here we are nearly at the end of 2013.

December is one of my most favorite months of the year. I love Christmas and the holidays. The cold weather and twinkly lights. I love it a ton but don't do much to scrapbook it sadly. But this year, I'm determined to be better! Any scrapbooking is a good thing. Really ANY! So even if I only make one page, it already puts me in the accomplished category. 

I've had this cute lil handbook for a few years now. It was part of the 2011 Studio Calico December Daily kit. I decorated it back then (see it here) but was never happy with how it looked. So I re-did parts of it and am so much happier with the results.
I left the black and white chevron fabric paper. I LOVE black and white and this one is fabulous and modern. Paired with a green bow in a most fabulous shade, I think it looks lovely.
I cut a design with my silhouette and use it as a stencil to add some molding paste for a truly fabulous texture. The cardstock I used was red and it bled a bit when I applied the paste. But I like the subtle color it adds. And if one day I don't like it, I can give the whole thing a coat of white paint.

Thank you Wilna for teaching this technique in Art Class Vol. 1! (I'm so behind on classes that I won't let myself buy Vol. 2 until I've worked my way through my backlog) This was by far and away my most favorite chapter. This stuff is just so cool!
Here's a few views of the edges. It's one of the original things I did to decorate this book. I loved the idea of just the simple red line around the whole album.
And here's a look at the inside. It's painted with Martha Stewart Glitter paint. I like the paint but it coats really thin. You're looking at at least 5 coats! But the shimmer is just so fabulous.
You see, I loved parts of this album design before. And now that I've re-worked the cover. I love the whole thing! I can't wait to start adding pages to this (now) gorgeous lil mini.

It's December =) Hooray!!

cheers & besos,

Curious Cat

Monday, November 25, 2013

Someone was very interested in yesterday's layout shoot. So interested she climbed into the light box. Isn't see cute?! Still so tiny but we like her that way. And yup, her tail is that short.

cheers & besos,

Jubilee: Go See Do

Do you ever just completely lose your mojo? Just aren't feeling creative even one little iota? That happens to me sometimes. Its been happening to me the last few weeks!! (Which is not helpful as I'm putting together my Christmas cards...)

My head just wasn't in the game for some reason. I was watching crafty videos. Browsing galleries. Trolling Pinterest. But nothing!

Then I just made something. A layout...and a sacrificial one at that. It wasn't my finest piece of work but it also wasn't the worst. And with it out the of way, I was able to create this layout. 

Creativity is like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it gets. 
Studio Calico's Jubilee kit came in the mail today (well yesterday, but I picked it up today). There's just something about receiving new goodies in the mail, and especially scrapbook goodies! I spread everything out to pour over it and then went to iPhoto to pull photos I thought would work. 

These snaps from my trip to Chicago this summer were the most inspiring to me. So I started there. I added a few of the brushes to the main one, along with text filling in some of the details.
I didn't know what I wanted to do with this page other than that I'd like to try out this design. Sam's (aka WaiSam) layout was what I had in mind. But I also had Jina Jean's layout pinned, which is where Sam's inspiration originally came from. All I went off of was separating my page into three bits, lining things up along the top and bottom edge and adding a simple title in the middle. 

I didn't look at either of their layouts until this page was finished. I didn't want to be very influenced. I just knew I wanted to try out this design!
This ended up being a no patterned paper layout, but I didn't mean for it to be! I even intended to use some of the Project Life cards. But once I started stamping and filing things in, I kind of ran out of room for any paper.
The title was the very last thing I added to this page. I made sure to cut out some of the fabulous designs that came with the kit & the class. I cut them all out of white cardstock with the intention that I would mist or paint or ink them. But of course I never do! There's just something about a crisp white.

Also, I only adhered the top loop of the "g" down so the rest would be floating. I like the dimension it adds.
Stamps, gelatos, sequins, printables, wood veneer, cork stars, mist splatters, hand stitching. I threw it all at this page. Circles are the primary design element since there's some great polka dots painted on these guys. [Link to article on the exhibition]

And, I didn't want to box out the page too much. Plus, I like circles! And there are some great circle stamps in the kit.
And so I think I'll call an end to my lack of mojo. Thank goodness!! I'm loving this page. I'm loving my new kit. And I'm loving that I'll have some down time this week to make some pages =)

In case I don't update before then, have a Happy Thanksgiving to all of my fellow USA-ians.

cheers & besos,