Saturday, June 1, 2013

Creative Adventures Downunder - Part 4

We were lucky enough to have some incredibly talented crafters over from the US of A for this event. All three ladies are names that I have heard around the scrapping scene for a number of years. All three names produce 'oohs' and 'aahs' when mentioned in scrapping and crafting circles. And all three names design and create not only incredibly popular products, but countless inspiring videos, photos, blog posts and pins on pinterest.
As soon as I saw the names of the three US tutors that would be here for the event, I just knew I had to find a way to be a part of this event. None disappointed! There are as inspiring in real life as they are on the internet. So let me start by sharing the two classes we had with the wonderfully humourous and ever so chirpy Heidi Swapp.

I just want to say upfront, that Heidi comes across as being totally down to earth and incredibly honest about who she is, especially in her role as a wife and mother. Her stories and anecdotes elicit from peals of laughter to tears of understanding. And I could happily listen to her talk about crafting and family and anything else for many an hour. The fact her husband plays and coaches rugby (yes as in NZ rugby) and she kind of understands the game is also a huge bonus for us Kiwi's and the Aussies in the room.

Class 1 - Memory Files:
This was the first class we had with Heidi. Our class kits consisted of a selection of her memory file products including Memory Files, Mini Memory Files, Instaframes, Openables, Banners, Definition Stickers, Clear Pop Bare Pockets, Clear Pop Tags, some Serendipity 12" x 12" papers, Window Frames. (I hope I managed to remember everything there!!)

The class started with some equipment failure. And though perhaps a little panicked, Heidi really didn't let it slow her down. The stories kept coming as she pushed buttons and plugs and eventually resolved all the technology issues... and yes Heidi, perhaps it wasn't your best idea bringing a brand new and completely untested laptop to teach way over here in New Zealand... but we got there.

A few personal stories down, and a lead in as to why and how this product range of Heidi's came about and then we were soon into cutting and folding and sticking and placing and measuring and generally trying to keep up with the ever energetic Heidi. The instructions were clear and easy to follow though sometimes we did struggle with knowing which product we should be using. Heidi refers to items by their product name which is great once you know what she's talking about, but until she holds up an example of an "openable", if you've never seen one before it can be a little bit perplexing.
I did manage to take one picture of Heidi in action as she showed us examples of what we were about to create.
The colour range is terrific, nice and bright even though they are what I would call "candy colours" and if you are at all familiar with my dislike of washed out colours (especially pastels), you are probably already guessing this was a plus for me.
Here are the two File Folders were created... from the outside. They are still both incomplete but this will give you an idea of what we did in class as well as just how colourful all these terrific products are.

These two pictures show the inside of the left hand file folder. (Rainbow striped front cover)
There are heaps of places for photos and journaling not to mention a lot of space to add some of the banners and clear pop tags that I still have left over after the class.
And this is the inside of the second file folder. (Chevron with grey and white striped edge)
Like many scrapbookers who put hours of love and devotion into their scrap books I am very precious about them, and they do tend to stay tucked away safely in the cupboard in my studio mainly because they are just so big and bulky.
What I really loved about this range from Heidi is that you can create individual file folders on an event and still hold just as many photos, but without all the bulk which makes them just so much easier to share and leave out where people can look at them.
These will also make ideal gifts for non-scrappers who just want somewhere to put photos and maybe write a bit about who is in the photos. They are definitely way cooler than a boring old slip in photo album but don't need all the trappings of your usual scrapbook page. Perfect for scrapping on the run as well.
I don't know that they will replace my traditional albums completely, but I do think that these will make useful addition to my scrapbook display and I will make some more and add some photos to these in the near future.

Class 2 - Shadowbox Frame:
This was first thing on day 2 for the pink group. We had all had a taste of file folders the day before and had been carrying around the naked shadowbox frame since then as well so we were all really keen to get stuck in to the class and see what we were going to create. The other cool thing was that on the desks as we walked in a sampling of some of Heidi's Colour Shine Mists... and who doesn't like to play with mists??
Today we were re-introduced to some products we had met the previous day but this time we got to experience the full versatility of them and what can be done when Heidi's Colour Shine is misted on and wiped off. The colour resist patterns are so amazing and really do come to life when sprayed with the mists and this means they can truly be matched to whatever colour scheme you want.
We misted the frame as well as some of the paper and fabric products. Then put together a mini file folder to fit inside the frame.
Here is the shadowbox frame misted in Tinsel and Black Velvet. There is just so much you could do with it. The tray is about 1 inch deep so you could fill it with some reasonably substantial items.
This is the outside of the mini folder we made to fit inside the Shadowbox frame. You can see it inside the frame, further down the post. The pennant, flowers and two of the scalloped trims have all been coloured with Colour Shine Mists.
Inside the mini folder there are more openables, instaframes and flip-ups for photos and journaling. You can add even more of these inside each other or add photos with washi tape hinges to include countless extra photos as well.
And right in the centre is a gate-fold opening with a frame for another picture... closed...
And then open. Many others put this particular paper the other way around, but I loved the sheet music so much that I made sure more of it would be seen.
And finally here is the mini file folder inside the shadowbox frame.
With something like this you could easily and quickly change the mini file folder inside the frame each season, or after each event. You can add additional decorations to the frame to match the colour scheme of the mini file folder inside it as well. So many options!!
This blog post wouldn't be complete without my obligatory picture with the lovely lady herself...
Isn't she just lovely... me... well I'm just looking a little grungey around the edges already :-)

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