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**All tutorials & the majority of the posts from this blog have been moved over to my new blog**

Feb 22, 2011

U R on my Mind Layout

Good evening fellow scrap-peeps! Today’s page is titled ‘U R on my Mind’ & is a remake of one of my first pages. This layout serves two purposes—to show how much my scrapbooking style has changed & as a submission for the Bo Bunny sketch challenge.

This is my husband & my little Toby taking a nap together. I just happened to be around at the perfect time to capture a perfect moment. They really are sleeping here too…no acting!

First some details on the challenge. Here’s the sketch we were given. This sketch provided much room for creativity.

I used BoBunny’s Cambridge collection for this page. The papers in the Cambridge collection were just right for a masculine themed page. I concentrated on two main concepts here—the harlequin design & random dots. My stitching, punch work & choice of paper all have either random dots or harlequin designs on them.

The metal flowers you see scattered about my page are actually bead caps. I had a few of these laying around & realized that they make perfect flowers.

The random dots were done with the EK Success Swiss punch. I just punched randomly not caring if I overlapped the dots. Then with a red permanent marker I traced around the circles in order to highlight them. I did this technique on the corner of my main photo & on the top & bottom borders of my page. I’ve seen Irene Tan (Scrapperlicious) do a similar technique—however I did not do such heavy random dot distressing as I’ve seen her do.

With a paper cutter I cut an area in my page in order to insert a tag that contains my journaling. The tag was first inked with distress inks & the journaling was printed on a transparency & then adhered to the tag. Finally I embossed the entire tag with a Cuttlebug embossing folder. Two acid free safety pins & a charm add the final touch to my journaling tag!

Journaling reads as follows: I took this picture while the two of you slept together. You looked so that moment I realized how grateful I am to have you. It's needless to say that no matter where I am or what I'm doing, my thoughts rarely stray from my two sweethearts.

I used Martha Stewart’s Garden Trellis punch to make the frame going around the top of my main picture. The edges of my picture are distressed & inked in Fired Brick distress ink.

I ended up using the woven stitch technique again on this page. Difference is that on my ‘It’s a Dog’s Life’ page I used it in a circle. Here I used it straight. For a tutorial on this woven stitch, please go here.

Finally, here’s a close up of my man flower. I call it a man flower because I wanted it to be a rugged, grungy sort of flower. Pink frilly flowers will not do for a page where my husband is involved! I’m afraid he’d file a complaint. I used a combination of Tim Holtz’s Tattered Florals die, Retro flower punch & a 2-tone brown mulberry flower for my man rose.

I hope to make a tutorial on this flower soon. So keep an eye out for it!

Ok let’s compare Past & Present shall we? This was my original page.

As you can see, I’ve come a long way. Mostly I’ve simply stopped being afraid to try new things. I’m starting to realize that the more adventurous I become…the more creative I can get!

That wraps up today’s post. Thanks for stopping by & I appreciate all your wonderful comments!

Till my next post…

Feb 16, 2011

Heart Breaker Layout

Good evening! Am sitting here watching American Idol & at the same time uploading my latest page titled 'Heart Breaker'--and I mean this in the literal sense.

Here's my little Toby tearing apart my heart! My red doily heart that is. Yep, this is one of Toby's favorite past times--ripping up any paper from my scrapbook stash that he can get his little paws on. When I saw him ripping into my heart doily I decided to take pictures as he did it. Besides--it was too late to save the heart! With Valentines just having passed, I figured this would be a perfect page for the occasion.

There are a variety of techniques on this page. There's masking, stamping, embossing, painting, stitching & a version of lacing.

I used a combination of papers from two Swirlydoos kits. Most of the script you see on the paper is actually a stamp. The vines & swirls you see in the red background was made with a mask & three layers of painting/inking. First layer was white acrylic paint, second layer was a dab of Fired Brick distress ink & final layer was Black Soot distress ink.

In this screen shot you can also see the black stitching going around the page.

The paper behind the photos is actually white vellum that I wrinkled & tore, inked in Fired Brick distress ink & stamped with a script stamp.

I did a version of stitching/lacing once again to make the harlequin background you see in this screen shot.

A closeup of the heart chippie. The heart was painted with three colors of acrylic paint--black, ivory & red. I tapped my paintbrush on the chippie to give it that 'splattered' effect. Then I used a crackle medium to give it that broken glass look.

Finally a closeup of the black swirls. The swirls are made out of grungeboard. I painted the swirls in black acrylic paint. Once dry, I dipped the grungeboard in embossing ink, poured clear Star Dust embossing powder on it & then heat embossed it. In person, the texture of these flourishes are really pretty!

Finally I randomly added Star Dust stickles around the page--it's hard to see in these photos...but they're there!

Well off to finish watching American Idol...believe it or not--it's my husband who loves this show...I just go along for the ride.

Till my next post...

Feb 9, 2011

It's A Dog's Life Layout

Yes, it's a Toby page today fellow bloggers & scrappers! It's been a while since I've done a page on my little boy. He's long overdue.

I've had this picture for some time now & I wanted just the right layout for that look he's giving me in this photo. He's got this 'sigh...what a hard knock life I lead' look. Meanwhile, he couldn't be more spoiled!

The paper is by Heidi Swapp. It's one of her Invisibles papers--"Circle Frame" to be exact. The black houndstooth paper is by Webster's Pages.

I used a lot of distress & alcohol inks on this page. The background is a mix of Broken China, Dusty Concord & Weathered Wood distress inks. Once I was done inking the background I used a mini-mister & misted it with water.

A close-up of the title. I decorated it with stickles, pearls & rhinestones. The title itself I printed on a transparency & adhered it with clear dry adhesive.

You can also see some of my stitching in this photo. I hand-stitched around the circle & along the scallop border found inside the circle. By the way, I created those inner scallops with a Martha Stewart punch. Instead of punching around the outside of the circle--I cut the inner piece of the circle out first & punched along the inner edge of the circle.

A close-up of the flowers. These little guys were stamped on a transparency & then alcohol inked. Finally I used a white gel pen to add some highlights to the petals. I've seen this technique used by Irene Tan--also known as Scrapperlicious. I have a slightly different way of applying the inks to the stamped images but in the end it's same result.

In this photo you can also tell that this layout has dimension. I adhered each layer of the circle with pop dots--so this created dimension on the page.

This is a close-up of the stitched circle. This actually is a form of stitching--just a very enlarged form of stitching! I took inspiration to create this 'woven stitch' by Natasha & by my late grandmother. For a tutorial on this stitch & for a brief explanation on how these two ladies inspired me--feel free to go here.

A close-up of another set of alcohol inked flowers.

Well, I think that pretty much wraps this page up. Thank you for taking the time to stop by & I appreciate your time & comments.

Till my next post...

Woven Stitch Tutorial

This tutorial was used in my 'It's a Dog's Life' layout--but in the form of a circle. I think this is what makes this fairly large stitch unique--it can be used in a variety of ways. In a circle, straight at a slant--the choice is yours.

This woven stitch came about by taking inspiration from two very talented women. One would be my scrap buddy Natasha who's love for lacing has made me look at this unique form of embellishing a layout with new eyes & who has also encouraged me to simply carry out the ideas that have been in my head for a very long time now. Thank you Natasha for the 'push' that I needed.

The second inspiration is from my late grandmother. She was a seamstress & as a child she used to teach me all sorts of stitching designs. I thought back to one of those many lessons & decided to simply enlarge & widen one of the stitches she taught me. So in reality I'm not inventing anything spectacular here. I'm sure this has been done elsewhere. I'm simply taking something that already exists & enlarging it to work with a layout. It's what they call 'thinking outside of the box' in the corporate world. :-)

Ok, let's get started. Your basic list of supplies consists of: a paper piercer, twine, ribbon, yarn, floss--anything you can use for weaving really--in my example I'm using twine-ruler & a pencil.

With your ruler measure out an odd number of holes--as many as you need to complete your design. I found that odd numbers work best for this design. In my example I made the holes 1 inch apart. Take your pencil & make your marks.

Next make two more sets of holes below the first set. The other 2 sets of holes are 1/2 an inch apart from the first set. When done, you should have 3 sets of holes as shown in the screen shot.
Now take your paper piercer & puncture your holes.

NOTE: From this step forward the red arrows represents the twine above the paper & the blue arrow represents the twine behind the paper.

Start with the first hole & stitch diagonally. Go under the paper & come out in the next diagonal hole. I think my screen shot explains this better than me! Keep going until you reach the end.

When you reach the end, simply backtrack & go in reverse. You'll know you're on the right track when you end up with a very wide v-shaped stitch as shown in my screen shot.

When done with the first stitch--start the second one. You're going to begin with the second hole & repeat the steps from the first stitch.

When doen with the second stitch--you'll end up with two parallel wide v-shaped stitches as shown in the screen shot.

Finally you have your third stitch. It's the same process used as the first two except it's an even larger stitch & inversed. If you notice, you'll be creating an upside down v-shape. I used red floss here in order to make it stand out more. Start with your bottom third hole & stitch all the way to the top. For the first round of the stitch go under the first two stitches as shown in my screen shot.

When done, go in reverse & go over the existing two stitches.

Here you go! Simple as that. Now you can get very creative with this. You can use eyelets or you can use different colors for each stitch, you can combine different strings like I did in my 'It's a Dog's Life' page where I used twine & ribbon.

Hope you enjoyed today's tutorial & that you have fun creating!
Till my next post...

Feb 2, 2011

Opposites Really Do Attract Layout

Hello again from a very icy North East. Mother Nature seems to be angry for some reason--it's been a rough winter in my book...can you say Spring?

My latest layout all began with the discovery of one picture--a picture of my husband when he was 12 sporting one very goofy smile! He still has that goofy smile--it's one of the many little things that I loved about him...

When I found this picture of him while helping him organize his boxes & boxes of junk (e-hem--I mean 'valuables' as he puts it) I knew I had to scrap it. But I didn't want to just scrap that one photo...I wanted a then & now of both him & myself & I also wanted to convey how different we are but yet, we were still drawn together.

I'm a full blown city girl. My husband is a hardcore country boy. He grew up surrounded with trees, quietness & all sorts of animals like bears, bull frogs, deer & rabbits. I grew up in the city where I could count the trees in my town on one hand, it was always loud & the only animals I remember seeing growing up were the dogs that people took out for their daily walks! Our up bringing affects us up till now. I'm very loud & you can hear my big mouth miles away. My husband is very quiet & tends to blend into the wall paper! But I think that's why we connected. He tones me down & I add tend to turn his usual quiet life upside down!

I did some distressing & stitching on this page--but what I did the most of was stamping. The entire background you see here was made with stamps & some masking.

I used a couple of metal flowers by Tim Holtz to decorate the corners. You can see some bling peeking out from the tear in my paper.

The flourishes you see all along the border of the layout is a flourish stamp by Tim Holtz.

Here you see a closeup of the masking, stitching, more stamping & the texture of the heart chipboard. I used the leaf glitter with UTEE technique to give the heart this texture. It looks amazing in person! If interested in this technique, feel free to find the tutorial here.

On my husband's side I wanted items that identified with him. So I have a picket fence, a rabbit (to represent nature) & a branch. The branch is actually a Prima felt vine that I covered in Copper Stickles & then with Broken China Distress Stickles. Here you can also see the stamping on the fence & the grass I stamped right below the fence.
On my side I stamped a brick wall background & used a stamp of the city of course what else! The stamp is by Tim Holtz & was perfect for this page.

I finished up the page by adding Star Dust stickles on all the flourishes & on the majority of my stamping. It's something I tend to do on all my pages but you can hardly tell from these pictures.

Hope you all enjoyed this page & that it serves as some proof that opposites really do attract!

Till my next post...