Tuesday, July 17, 2012

So Big, So Fast

After the "Baby Boy" layout I created for my nephew's baby album, I still had enough product left over from the kit to create a second layout.
This second layout is about showing how much Troy has grown already. 
There are a number of similarities between the two layouts. Not only are the products the same but I have also utilised a number of similar design elements in both layouts.

  • Distressed edge around each page
  • Photo layout similar
  • Use of diagonal design elements
  • Grouped embellishments (flowers for the younger page, cogs for the older page)
  • Journaling and title placement the same

The pages can either go into his album as a double layout, or just as individual pages. Either way will still look effective.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Baby Boy Layout

When I first started scrapping I started out as a consultant for TLC (Top Line Creations). Their products were based around collections which included kits and coordinated embellishments. I love kits for classes and workshops especially for those new to scrapbooking. They are also an excellent tool if you don't have a great deal of time for either scrapping itself or for hunting around your local scrapbooking store for the perfect products for your project.
As my scrapping style (and technical ability) have developed I've found that in general the TLC kits no longer suit my style of scrapping, though every now and then I use some that are left in my stash. I tend to be a lot more experimental in my scrapping these days and build my layouts with a broader range of products from a much wider range of manufacturers.
I pulled out one of the TLC kits for this layout. I had two adorable pictures of my nephew Troy which I wanted to put on an equally adorable layout for his baby album (even though he's now two!!) This kit came with two sheets of baby blue cardstock, two sheets single sided patterned paper and a 7" x 7" sheet of flocked, die-cut cardstock embellishments.
I cut a 6" x 6" square from each of the patterned paper. I distress inked around each of the patterned paper squares as well as the sheet of cardstock using Tim Holtz Antique Linen and Walnut Stain distress inks. The patterned paper squares were then adhered to the cardstock in diagonally opposite corners with a slight overlap.
I rounded the corners of the photos just to soften them a little then adhered them so as to offset the patterned paper. The die cut title was self-adhesive, so I adhered this against the darker patterned paper. 
The layout looked quite good just like that but I felt it needed some more softening (cos Troy was just so cute and cuddly and snuggley in these pictures), so I added some pale yellowy-cream flowers and highlighted them with dark brown rhinestones.
I added a small rectangle of manilla cardstock which I distressed the same as the cardstock and patterned paper. I hand wrote Troy's full name in a glitter gel pen and adhered this in close to the photos.
The final addition was a couple of small brown rub-on scrolls just to balance out the two opposite corners of the layout.
I love the final look of the layout. It's simple, yet soft but not overly feminine so my sister (a non-scrapper) won't think it's too girly.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Rolled Flower Tutorial... with a twist.

I'm making some flowers for a swap on the Crafting Passionz Forum. One of the last before the Forum closes down. All is not lost as a new group has started up to replace it. If you are interested in joining us, you can find us at Scrappers Obsessionz - a forum for New Zealand and Aussie scrappers.

I'm making some rolled flowers with a bit of a twist for one of my two flowers for the swap so thought I would share with you how I made them.


  • Material - I've used Japanese Metallic Lame as it was cheap at Spotlight and the theme for the swap is "Moulin Rouge"
  • Double sided adhesive sheets
  • Cardstock or cardboard - I used cardboard I recycled from cup-of soup boxes and the like
  • Black cotton - or whatever contrasts with the material you have used
  • Black beads (or contrasting colour)
  • Large black (contrasting colour) rhinestone

  • Draw then cut a circle from your sheet of double sided adhesive. I cut my circles 3" in diameter using my Fiskars circle template as a guide.
  • Remove one side of the protective backing paper and adhere the circle of double sided adhesive onto the cardboard. Don't remove the other backing paper yet.
  • Cut around the adhesive circle. This method is much easier than trying to align a circle of adhesive to a circle of cardboard. This way they are guaranteed to match.
  • Cut a stripe of material about an inch wide. I found that this was a good width to work with and I only needed one strip to complete the entire circle. You don't need to measure exactly... eye balling is near enough.
  • Remove the remaining backing paper from the adhesive circle. From this point it gets a bit tricky and a bit fiddly depending upon how sticky your double sided adhesive is.
  • Fold your material strip in half width-wise so you are working with a strip about 1/2 inch wide. Twist the end once or twice for your starting point right in the centre of the circle.
  • The method is then to keep twisting in the same direction and sticking the strip down in a spiral working your way outwards from the centre of the circle. Try to keep the strips close enough together that you don't end up with gaps of adhesive showing between the material spiral. Continue doing this until you have used up all the material or your circle is completely covered, whichever happens first. I find that your bits between the twists should naturally get longer the further from the centre of the circle that you get.
  • On the final row around the outer edge make sure that you cover any remaining patches of double sided adhesive. It doesn't matter if the final row of "petals" lies beyond the actual edge of the cardboard as this will be covered. It's more important to make sure there are no uncovered patches of adhesive.
  • Finish off the tail of material by tucking it underneath the flower and adhering down with sellotape. It will be hidden on your layout so it doesn't need to look pretty... just be functional.
  • Adhere the rhinestone in the middle of the fabric circle.
  • Thread the needle with a single thread of cotton. Knot both ends together to give you two threads. Push the needle underneath the rhinestone from one side to the other. 
  • Thread six beads onto the needle and slide these down to the fabric base. Encircle the last bead with the needle then push the needle back through the other five beads under the rhinestone and back out diagonally opposite.
  • Repeat this until you have eight stamens evenly around the rhinestone. Tie off the thread so it won't unravel. 

I've made four different colours for the "Moulin Rouge" flower swap. I love them all. I really like the way the fabric has a "distressed" look as well with the loose threads and fringey edge.

Thursday, July 12, 2012


This was supposed to be a tutorial post with step by step pictures explaining how to make some flowers but instead I spent the day packing and moving my  daughter and granddaughter back home again.
Hopefully, though this may be wishful thinking on my part, I will get a chance to complete (read start and finish) the tutorial and post it tomorrow.
It may depend on whether or not I can even move because my body is telling me I may have over done it just a tad today... moving and baby sitting a 3 year old is not easy!!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Jungle Kitteh

This is a layout that has been in progress for some time. I printed the photos a while ago, picked out some cardstock and patterned paper, kind of planned the page but when I laid everything out didn't like the way it looked so put everything into a bag. Every now and then I pulled the bag out... rearranged things, tried new patterned paper then put everything back in the bag. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about.
This week I've been trying to clear up some of these long unfinished projects and layouts... with some success I might add. Finally things seemed to fall into place. Funny that it seems to happen when you just say to yourself... "dammit I need to get these bloody pictures on the page... like it or lump it".

I started by changing the cardstock. Instead of a green background, I went for Kraft. Though I loved the green so it didn't disappear too far.
Given the subject matter... kitten up a tree... I wanted to have some trees somewhere on the page... to keep up the theme. I couldn't have green trees on a Kraft background that just wouldn't look right, but I also didn't want to go back to a boring green background with Kraft trees. So I experimented...

  1. In order to have the Kraft cardstock as my background and be my trees I had to use the green as negative space. 
  2. On the back of the green cardstock I sketched a couple of rough trees. 
  3. To get a natural look, I tore the tree shapes out by hand. 
  4. I temporarily adhered the green trees in place and lightly traced around them.
  5. Using the traced lines as a guide I loosely inked a tree shape using Tim Holtz Distress Inks. I made sure to ink well beyond the traced lines so that I had lee-way to move my green negative spaces slightly to alter the final shape of my trees.
  6. When I was happy with the colouring of my "trees", I temporarily placed the green negative spaces. At this point I made a few slight adjustments to the green shapes to give the final look of my trees before permanently adhering the shapes in place.
  7. I adhered my photos in place taking care to make up my eye-balled spacing was even. (I usually don't measure)
  8. I added my title across the bottom part of the layout.
At this point I wasn't sure if I was finished or not, so I took a couple of photos and decided it needed more, though I wasn't sure what... so I left it overnight and contemplated it in my sleep LOL.
  1. I tore some thin strips from the green trees bits I had discarded. I roughly bent each strip in half following the line of the strips.
  2. I chalked the two sides of the strips in two shades of green chalk. I wanted the strips to stand out from the green background rather than blend in.
  3. I adhered the strips in place with Elmers Glue.
  4. The title didn't really stand out enough, so I outlined the letters with white pen to coordinate with the white borders of the photos.
  5. Having sorted the bottom section of the layout the top needed something extra. I found some old "jungle leaves" I'd die cut years ago but never used. Even though they were already green patterned paper, I distress inked the leaves to look more tropical.
  6. I adhered the leaves in place giving them a little dimensionality.
And here is the final result...

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Altered Box Swap

Part 2 - The gift I received in return.

In exchange for the altered box I made for Faith, the following is the wonderful gift I received from her in return.
I gave Faith a wide range of options for how to decorate my box. Something dark, moody, elegant or steam punk. And this is the "Elegant" Altered Box and goodies that she created for me.
Isn't this just beautiful and truly "Elegant". The paper Faith used to cover the box is flocked which just adds to its elegance. The lace and rhinestones on the lid, really just finish the look.
The stunning view when I removed the lid... over flowing with goodies.
And lined inside as well... just had to show this because it looks just as stunning empty!!
Three bundles of ribbon. I love the decorated pegs that Faith used to store the ribbons on. 
Set of 4 coordinated stick pins. (Sorry fuzzy picture) I love the roses beads on these as well as the pearl heads on the pins.
Look at all these charms... heaps in here!!! Keys, crosses, wolf, wings, fleur de lis... and many, many more.
There are actually four of these amazing fabric flowers. Two black and two white. Beautiful... I love Faith's flowers!!!
And then this stunning, amazing, totally glorious mini album...
... with all sorts of photo mats...
... and pockets...
... and a mini album inside the mini album...
... and even more amazing pages.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Altered Box Swap

Part 1 - My creation

I've just completed a partner swap on Crafting Passionz Forum and would've posted these pictures earlier, but didn't want to let the cat out of the bag before my partner, the lovely and talented Faith, received the finished gifts.
The theme was agreed between the respective partners and Faith wanted something that looked like it was made of metal... this I found out AFTER I'd just been out and bought a paper mache box from Spotlight... oh well... time to get creative.
The only requirement was the box needed to be a minimum of 6" x 6". The box I bought was quite a bit bigger than this but then I wanted to be able to put a couple of long die cuts in it, so purchased with that in mind.
I painted the box with silver acrylic paint inside and out. I then distressed the corners with the Tonic Studio Tim Holtz Distress Scratcher Tool on all sides to show wear then coloured the distressed areas with Tim Holtz Distress Ink in a selection of colours. 
I adhered strips of cardstock covered in metallic duct tape and scratched around the side of the lid and finished the front with a metallic label plate held on with mini silver brads.
I attached patches of cardstock I covered in metallic duct tape then ran through my Cuttlebug to emboss. (I will post a tutorial on this soon.) I adhered some strip bling ribbon around the edge of the lid as well as the bottom edge of the box. Finally I added some washers to decorate the corners of the lid.
Inside I adhered some metallic mesh to the inside of the lid. This can be used to hold things on mini hooks or things like dangly earrings. Although you can't see it, I also lined the bottom of the box with a silver mesh material which I loosely adhered to the bottom to create a billowy cushion for all the little extras, some of which are pictured below. 
I die cut four butterflies from kraft cardstock. One I left blank, then from left to right - crystal glitter paint, Radiant Rain - Yellow Rose, and Acrylic Paint - Champagne (even though it looks silver).
I found a couple of mini tins in an emporium type shop. This one I added some self-adhesive silver glitter ribbon and a butterfly. Inside I stashed some ribbons.
This tin I decorated with some Making Memories double sided adhesive die-cut flowers and some blue fine glitter. Then finished each flower with a mini rhinestone.
Inside this tin I put a doiley (to flash-up the bottom) as well as a small hanging charm and a couple of rosettes that I had inked before gluing together. I used the Sizzix Paper Rosette by Tim Holtz and Sizzix Mini Paper Rosettes dies.
I made an over-sized matchbook with ribbon closure to hold securely a set of six stick pins. I'm always concerned about sending stick pins to anyone, so make sure that the sharp ends are always pushed into some foam for protection and safety. The foam is hidden by the bottom front flap of the matchbook.
Inside I enclosed these stick pins. I really loved the finished pin with the chains.
I completed the goodies with a pair of matching mini albums with a hand-sewn butcher's twine binding seam. Each album has mini pockets front and back complete with little tags tucked in. The papers I used were all in silvers and grays with many from the Teresa Collins Timeless and On the Edge ranges which you can purchase from my shop. Check back soon for a tutorial on how to make these mini albums.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Angel Album - Part 2

If you've been following along, I've been working on finishing some unfinished projects. Some have been this way so some time, and others not so long.
Here are the finished pages in the Angel Album I have made for my niece to celebrate the birth of her darling baby girl - Paige Taylah.

You can check out part 1 of the album here.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Update - Finishing What You Started...

Since my earlier blog post I've managed to finish...

  • Circle Journal pages to be sent on to Australia
  • Altered Box for swap, including several hand made items inside (as well as some store-bought)
Just need to take photos of them both, before posting them off to the respective recipients. I will post photos soon - isn't it exciting!!

More New Products

I've been busy again today. More products added to the website. 
I am such a sucker for patterned paper... I really don't want to share, I want to keep it all for myself but it's just too nice not share!

  • Flowers
  • Patterned Paper

  • Ribbon Pleats

These pleated ribbons are just so gorgeous and I love the colours. WOW!!