Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Great Grandma's Quilt

I have exactly one family heirloom. And let me tell you, it is wickedly awesomely cool. My great-grandma Juanita hand made/stitched this "quilt". (It's a bed cover, complete with ruffle. But I'll continue to call it a quilt.)

The detail in it is amazing, and the colors are so beautiful. It's folky and a tad in your face. But I think that might be exactly why I love it so much. 

It's also a part of my culture and my heritage. The colors even remind me of the Mexican flag. I'm so lucky to have it hanging in my house. 
The page I made is fairly simple: an enlarged photo, some smaller accent photos, title, hand stitching and a few drops of paint. That's really all there is to it.
The rest is all about the journaling. I conjured up all the lessons Jill talked about in Scrapbooking for the Soul; and really took my time writing and editing my journaling.

I had a lot to say about this heirloom, and since its a hand made quilt I really wanted the journaling to be handwritten. But I couldn't make it all fit! So I had to compromise a bit by mixing in an "aged" typewriter font while leaving spaces for some handwritten words.

Journaling Reads:
There is a thread that connects me to her. 

I know bits and pieces about my great grandma. I know she had cotton colored hair and a love for red nail polish. I hear she was a tiny sprite full of gumption. They tell me she loved to travel and would just up and leave without telling anyone. She would go visit this friend or that one. I also know she made things with her hands. Beautiful things such as this quilt. She hand stitched every leaf, every flower, she created la Madre out of thread.
I feel this in my bones: because of her, I make things. Except my medium is paper and glue. I love creating things out of nothing; weaving patterns together, playing with color and technique. 

I'm thankful to have such precious reminder of how akin I am to her. She was a tiny ancestor who I only briefly met. But we are probably more alike than I know. The thread that connects her to me is heART.

cheers & besos,

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Patterns of my Life

I love mixing patterns! Not just on my pages, but also in my fashion choices. The other day I walked out the door in a black and white striped sweater, cheetah print slippers and a floral scarf. And it just clicked in my head that I needed to photograph and make a page about the patterns of my life.
For the page I used a sketch and a mix of patterned papers, along with a little photo strip of photos I took that day.


I made my own floral print using paint, watercolor, stamps and mist. 

 And since this layout was about clothes, I did some machine stitching to anchor all the parts down.

The embellishing was fairly minimal. A bit of tape, some twine, a cork sticker and a few bits of stamping were all that I added.

It was risky putting black and orange together, but I'm hoping it comes off more fall and less halloween. Any way you look at it, I still love it =)

cheers & besos,

Monday, January 20, 2014

Blessed are the Brave

Hey there!! I feel like I haven't been updating as much this year. It's probably true. But I'm still creating and planning and also printing out photos for my Project Life. I seem to be focusing a lot of energy on the latter. Uploading photos, editing, printing them the appropriate sizes. At this point, I'm just slipping things in pockets, so I can go back to have fun and embellish later. We'll see if that strategy works. I'm still trying to figure this whole Project Life thing out! But I digress....

I'm also still loving being a part of the Simple Scrapper community. Jennifer debuted a new Jumpstarts concept this year. It's exactly what you think it is, in that they are videos that are meant to jumpstart your creativity or help jog your memory. This page is a direct result of that inaugural video. Part of the challenge was to document a time when you had courage. For me, that was almost too easy. The bravest thing I ever did was to move to London after college. More on that in just a bit.
Before I talk about the idea for the page, I wanted to talk about the design. I have to say, it has me pretty excited!

I decided to create my own counterfeit kit this month and I used the January Hip Kit Club as my inspiration. I've had this gorgeous Amy Tangerine print in my stash, but I've almost been too intimidated by its beauty to actually use it. Choosing that kit forced me to reconsider it and I'm so glad that it actually made it into the scrapbook!

It's a really spectacular piece and I wanted to use as much of it as I could. But I ended up doing something way different with it. I sliced it down the middle and then pieced it back together. I decided to hide my journaling and did this by gluing the photo strip onto a folded piece. It unfolds to show all of my journaling.
But that's not all folks! I turned the other side into a flap as well. But this covered up an enlarged photo.

From the get go, I knew I wanted to use a line of black and white photos along the side. But it wasn't until I was choosing photos (and after I printed a strip that just didn't work with this page) that I decided to throw in the enlarged print of me in front of Big Ben.
This is what the layout looks like when its all unfolded. (And I have no idea why all of the color got sucked out of this photo!!) The gray polka dot is the B side to the horizontal stripe.
And what it looks like when the photo strip is folded down. Which is how I printed my photos to begin with, on one 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of photo paper.
The majority of the embellishing went on this top flap. I used the Cut & Paste sticker book, wood veneer alphas, silver glitter Thickers, those awesome Printshop word stickers and just a few drops of gray ink to embellish. All of which I pulled for my counterfeit January Hip Kit Club kit.

I think what I love most about this page is that it reminds me of a file folder. Given my love for all thing office supplies, that makes me ridiculously happy.
But back to the Jumpstarts and this whole concept of courage. My journaling reads:

Blessed are the brave for they will have adventuresThis was by far and away the adventure of a lifetime. Looking back, I really have no idea how/why I threw myself into that situation headfirst, no fear and no trepidation. It's so not me, typically.

After college I made up my mind to move to London. So I figured out how to do it and I just went. I didn't know anyone there. I had never met any of the 5 people I was going to be living with. I had only been to London one other time so I most definitely didn't know the city. If anything went wrong, I was at least 24 hours away from anyone familiar who could rush to my rescue.

Writing all that out makes me wonder why I signed up in the first place. But going back through that list with hindsight, I know I had nothing to worry about. I may not have known anyone when I got there. But by the end, I had dozens of people I would consider my friends. I may not have met my 5 flat mates before, but they became the best friends I've ever had, my true & honest soul mates. I didn't know the city at the beginning, but I learned as much about it as I could. It's a city you continue learning about. And every time I go back, I learn something new!

Moving to London was the bravest thing I've ever had to do and the best decision I ever made. And it never would have happened if I hadn't plucked up the courage to simply pack a bag, get on the plane and go.

See what I mean guys, I'm having so much fun being part of this new community. I'm loving all of the inspiration and the page ideas. I never would have thought to make this page otherwise! It's now the unofficial title page to my album. And something just darn pretty to look at!

cheers & besos,

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Color Swipe Cards

Quick share tonight yall, I'm anxious to get some scrapping in since I won't be around this weekend! 

I made some quick thank you cards for a few of the Studio Calico CHA crop challenges. I was inspired by Eyoung Lee's lovely cards. They're a bit similar but mostly different. I had fun making those color swipes! The color combo came from the Color Challenge.
I'm so excited that I got to use these awesome Evalicous stamps that Studio Calico put out this past month. I loved that little typewriter. I stamped it on the envelope and used a gelato to add some color.

For the card itself, I used a blue and pink gelato, some spray mist and paint for the swipes. Then I sprinkled some gold mist over the top. I made 12 of these cards in under an hour while watching the Golden Globes. They were so quick and so easy! And I love the bright cheery color. It really was a fabulous color combo to work with.
On the inside, I used that Evalicous stamp again and some neon pink ink to add a quick sentiment. I'm planning to handwrite thank you and include my note.

And now for an evening of Project Life-ing and some Downton Abbey. Tata!

 cheers & besos,

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Start Fresh Workbook

*Read about the 2015 edition here*
I'm almost done with the Start Fresh workshop Jennifer's putting on over at Simple Scrapper. This workbook has me sooooo excited! It's helping me get organized, it's forcing me to think through my goals & intentions for scrapbooking this year, and it's just so pretty to look at!

The binder and the dividers are Martha Stewart for Staples. I love the teal and knew the instant I saw these dividers, that I would incorporate in some way the Shanna Noel Printables that are available this month at Studio Calico. The colors were too perfect!
I'm still on my Simple Scrapper high. I'm so loving being a part of this community. 100% happy with my decision to join =)

cheers & besos,

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

London to LA

As I type, I'm working on an the first assignment from Simple Scrapper Start Fresh class. I'm very excited about it! 

So let me share this page with you, using some other great Simple Scrapper content. This is based off of one of this month's sketches.

I used a whole mess of Studio Calico products to make this page about me and my friend Keely. You know my OLW for this year? Open. Yeah, that word is pretty much a direct result of this new friend.

It's weird to think about, but it's been awhile since I've made a new friend.

I have my college friends, my grad school friends, my Houston friends. Everyone's kind of formed into groups. 

Keely's part of my work friends group. She was an intern a few summers ago who came back to take on a new role we had open in the office. We weren't very close back then. But from pretty much the second she walked in the door this time around, we instantly bonded. I don't know what it says about me, but her 23 year old humor is pretty much the same as mine. We laugh and giggle a lot. Much to the chagrin of my fellow colleagues I'm sure. But she makes work fun and I definitely appreciate that.

It all goes back to the open thing. I wasn't expecting it, but I'm always open to making new friends. And because of that, I did!

We travel a lot for work. All of us do, even us junior employees. Keely and I ended up on three trips together this year, to LA, London and DC. So I had these great photos of us in front of St. Paul's in London and the other is us in the Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica. I also had this photo of a club card we got at a happy hour we went to together.

I knew I wanted to use these photos together, as different as they are. And the sketch from this month's Simple Scrapper mag was perfect for it, with just a few amendments.  I decided to tilt the photos on an angle a bit. The sketch also called for a doily at the top left hand corner but instead, I decided to fold the paper back to show the awesome B side of the yellow grid. That was a happy accident really. It wasn't until nearly the end that I realized the aqua on the back was really similar to the aqua on the front. The benefits of working with papers from the same manufacturer! 

I love how the aqua looks with the yellow and just a few pops of gold and green. The paper tucked in the corner was some I knew I wanted to incorporate but didn't quite know how. And once I figured out that I wanted to fold the corner, I knew it could work there.

I like this mix of paper. Some modern. Some traditional. Some quirky. Kind of like me and mah friend.


The paper did most of the heavy lifting, so I really didn't do much to embellish this page. I machine stitched the flap down and around a few corners at the bottom. Other than that, it only took a few sentiment stickers, some tape and a badge or two to complete.

Oh! And I almost forgot the best part (and completely forgot to photograph it) but the middle photo flips up to show a few more photos from that same night at happy hour. They were screenshots of the crazy text messages we were sending afterwards. Probably for the best that they're tucked away ;)

And here I am, at the end of this post and finished with Assignment #1 for Start Fresh! I'm excited to think about what I want to accomplish this year-scrapbooking wise. And happy to dive in!

cheers & besos,

Sunday, January 5, 2014

December Project Life

Here it is in all its glory, my complete December album. I didn't do this daily, instead I printed photos in batches and powered through with embellishing once we got back from Ohio. It was a lot of work but I love that its done.

I shot a (not so quick) video of myself flipping through the pages and talking about the design and other things. And if you're just interested in the photos, those are below. It's really photo heavy so I'll warn you in advance.

New products used: Blue Note Project Life Kit, Let your Heart be Light Cut, Lawn Fawn badges, Life Love Paper Printables, Knock Knock Roller Stamp, Webster's Pages/Allison Kreft 6x6 Paper Pad

cheers & besos,