I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I love the Hercules kit from Studio Calico!!! Those gorgeous flowers are in my project life spreads, on a bunch of greeting cards, and after looking through the Studio Calico gallery at Maggie Holme’s awesome layout, on a new framed layout that is part of a larger photo collage in my living room. This kit played a crucial role in convincing me that a well curated scrapbook kit is really worth the money.
I’ve been on a lettering kick recently – last month I took a pointed-pen calligraphy class at Meant to Be Calligraphy and I’ve been obsessed with Jenny Doh’s Creative Lettering: Techniques and Tips from Top Artists – but struggled with adding my lettering to my traditional and Project Life layouts. Finding the right ink/paper combinations with my very limited lettering supplies (I seriously have over 100 pens but only a few of them are right for the loopy lettering techniques I’m in love with), is very challenging. The Higgins Eternal black ink we got in class absorbs straight into the Becky Higgings Project Life paper. It looks okay on water color paper but as a newbie to pointed-pen and other technique-centric pens, I’m still getting used to the scratchiness. The Mister Huey’s inks work on the Project Life cards but the pointed pen part leaves weird scratchy marks for this nube….
Complaining aside, I’ve been trying to figure out ways to add personalized/custom lettering to my projects without the hassle of figuring out what ink to match with what medium and the solution seems to be the Silhouette Cameo. For the layout below, I tried some brush script techniques using a tablet, drew the image, saved it as an image file (e.g., jpg), and then cut the file out using water color paper. Voila! No special inks needed!
Then I colored the words using some Faber Castell Gelatos. My favorite part was distressing the outline of the words using the Black Soot distress marker. I originally created a harsh line, but using a water brush, I was able to blend the gelato and distress marker for a unique look.
For the rest of the page, I used scraps from my Gelato swatches and other projects. I seem to use up a lot of my scraps in the scrapbooking process and generate a lot of scraps working on greeting cards and Project Life. I don’t scrap very much, but I’d be very curious to know if that happens to others.
The most recent Amy Tangerine/Kal Barteski woodblock stampset is perfect for so many layouts that I created a cut file so I could easily create embellishments. I used Delicata Gold ink to stamp it and then distressed the paper using Mowed Lawn and Black Soot distress pens.
I just put the finishing touches on a minibook of our 11-day trip to Italy in May. Below are most of the supplies I used sans a few things like pens, sticker embellishments, and my hole punch; I also used my Canon Selphy to print out some of the photos towards the end after we got home. Everything fit into a 0.75 gallon ziplock bag which was super handy throughout the trip. It was so convenient to spread everything out and put it back in the bag that I even scrapped on the train!
Some notes for others planning to scrap on holiday.
- I used two 6×6 acetate sheets that I bought off of ebay for the covers. The rings are 1.5 inches in diameter. The pink hole punch/brad attacher from WE R Memory Keepers made it easy to punch holes through the sheets.
- I stored all my memorabilia in a slim pouch that was tucked into my backpack. Making sure that everything was stored carefully in order made assembling the book very easy.
- Editing images to overcome the blown out look of the instax printer photos was a breeze with Snapseed. The “Ambience” setting led to some awesome print outs.
- I love the instax printer. Although I wasn’t able to finish my travel album during the trip, I was able to capture highlights and little details. Best part of the printer is the sharing aspect. I was scrapping on the train from Rome to Florence and the ticket guy asked me to photography and print out pictures for his best friend. Although i don’t understand much Italian, I think he really liked the device because he came back and posed with another buddy. 🙂
- Put everything back in the bag when you’re done in the evening so you stay organized and don’t lose anything!
This post is pic heavy. Hope you enjoy!
I generally don’t use red or like Valentine’s Day themed stuff but something about Studio Calico’s Sugar Rush kits are so sassy, fresh, and bright. Maybe it’s been the interminable snow or maybe my brain is dehydrated from the heater running non-stop but I love the entire Sugar Rush release so much that, for the first time, I bought THREE kits! I don’t generally like kits but even though the design is so distinctive, I’ve been amazed at how versatile all of the supplies have been. I also picked up some letterpress supplies and gold chipboard hearts and stars from their new Essentials line.
Below are some projects I’ve made using the Sugar Rush card kit, project life kit, and Taffy. This is my first Studio Calico card kit and I felt a little overwhelmed at first thinking that I had to follow a set template for my cards. But my creative juices really started flowing after I stopped looking — and being intimidated by — the design team gallery and just got lost in playing.
I loved using the Simple Stories Disney 6×6 paper pad — it was such a classy interpretation of the traditional Disney colors. I used the pad and some other Disney theme supplies to make some fun Disney themed pages for a gift album. The Silhouette was awesome for creating a custom-sized vellum Mickey Mouse head and the banner letters.
I love using my Cuttlebug to emboss Bazzill’s Marshmallow cardstock. The result is always so crisp. It also feels very rewarding even though all I’ve done is crank the Cuttlebug for a few seconds!
After exchanging Valentine’s Day cards, I added them into my Project Life book. There aren’t many scrapbook pages in my book because I find them harder to put together but from time to time, making a scrapbook page isn’t as hard.
I had a lot of fun using my washi tape collection for the first page. I created the patterned paper using a bunch of stamps from My Mind’s Eye and the Hero Arts shadow ink in Charcoal. I so loved the scrapbook paper patten from a sheet I bought months ago. I’ve slowly cut out patterns from that page and used it slowly in many different projects – the longevity of this one 12×12 is pretty awesome. It won’t last forever though and with my charcoal inks and the My Mind’s Eye stamps, I can also recreate the look and customize it for the color scheme of my projects. The sentiment, “Valentimes” comes from my husband, who likes 30 Rock. I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out the words using a free Ali Edwards font I found out about from a Two Peas forum.
This second page was more challenging. This is the B side of the paper (it’s from a Basic Grey paper kit I bought from Goldenshill Papercrafts). I really liked the pattern by itself but had a really hard time pairing it with other colors. I ended up misting our names with four different colors before coloring it in with a Distress marker. You might have to click through to the full-size image to see it, but the white side is embossed with this awesome pattern from a Lifestyle Crafts QuickCutz embossing folder. The flowers are so detailed and pretty.
I’m not sure about the color scheme on this page but in the end, it turned out better than it started. Sometimes, that’s the best I can do. I have a 6×6 of this same background and have some ideas of how I might pair it with other colors in a future project.
I’m sad I couldn’t make it to my friend’s wedding in Japan – especially since it turned out to be a mini-reunion! I was a little perplexed trying to get them a personal and thoughtful gift not being at the wedding and having never met the groom.
Once I saw the pictures though, I was inspired to create some pages to jump start an album for them. The photos – especially the ones from my friend’s camera – were so lovely I knew this would be a perfect gift from me to them. So floaty and pretty.
From the memory-keeping side, I have noticed a few things.
The In-My-Head Process
- After focusing on cards for so many years, the story-telling aspect of scrapbooking really trips me up. When I’m at an event, it is challenging for me to distill the essence of a story into one or a few photos. Making these pages was a breeze compared to how I’ve been agonizing over every aspect of my sister’s album. Not being at my friend’s wedding helped me to tell a much more cohesive visual story because I had no actual story to align it to! Don’t know if it’s a good thing, but I’m going to try harder with my sister’s book to focus on a theme (maybe good times, then and now, quirky things I love about her, funny memory) rather than capturing every moment of the event.
- I’ve spent the last few months obsessively learning every technique including watercoloring, drawing patters, stamping (when to stamp and how, particular on solid images), copics, stickles, embossing, ribbon, misting, splotching (I don’t know if that’s a word but it feels suitable for describing dotting the page with inky dots, and washi tape (there are DEFINITELY techniques associated with using washi – see here)*. These pages represent the first time all that learning came together naturally for me – I wasn’t making a page because of the technique (except for maybe the “A Toast” page) – but other than that, it all felt like I’d mastered enough of the techniques to focus on the story or thought I wanted to visually communicate rather than worrying about the technique.
Products/lines that helped ease me into scrapbooking:
- Studio Calico products and the member gallery have been awesome in helping me incorporate the embellishments that really add the most oomph to a page. I spent the first two months of my subscription very overwhelmed looking at everyone’s pictures. I want to develop my own aesthetic and I’m more confident now doing my own thing. The members of this community are amazingly gifted.
- Misting and splotching with Mister Huey’s add something very subtle and special to each page. I found this video on youtube by CardofMyEye that demonstrates the basic techniques really well.
- Hero Arts Shadow inks are so beautiful – they create a floaty image on washed out color schemes and fill in solid stamps so beautifully. From the reviews I’ve seen on Youtube, I’m super excited to add StampinUp’s new ink pads to the mix for my more crisp and graphic pieces.
- Paper by Basic Grey. So versatile and atmospheric – ’nuff said!
* Scarletbird’s posts and my friend who got me a million amazing washi for Xmas are responsible for my etsy washi tape shopping spree. I’m afraid this spree will double my collection in about a week. I was stocking up for the year. Yep, that’s my story.
I got a Tim Holtz “Mini Attacher” the other day which basically means I just got the most amazing stapler EVER! The staples are a QUARTER OF AN INCH! As my sister said, “mini anything is SO CUTE!” (okay – i’ll stop with the CAPS now.. i mean now!)
The 0.25 inch staple refills are 2 bucks for 2000! So… in addition to stapling ribbon and other craft related stuff, I have mini-stapled strategic documents, roles and responsibilities for our new data scientist, and three pages of my datebook (they’re September pages… they don’t count anymore) I hope this doesn’t make recycling more difficult…
Anyhow… behold… an example of the mini stapling awesomeness. – a scrapbook page using Studio Calico’s Roller Rink monthly kit. The website also comes with free inspiration from people who are awesome at design aka awesome effective marketing.
I colored the camera with my copic ciao’s and I have to say that it looks pretty faboo in the picture – the ciao’s are really fun to use. However, I don’t want to get sucked into buying more because I don’t use them enough to justify the cost.
However, I can see myself using Mister Huey’s Color Mists – a lot! I generally dislike messy crafting, which for me equals crafting that requires something wet that I can’t finish in one session, even if it’s like 8 hours. So unless I have a good system for using something, cleaning it up, and putting it away, it’ll just sit in my cubbies. But Mister Huey’s are great – no sparkle, just saturated color – and the pizza box that my scrapbook kit came in is perfect. Two sprays (that’s the yellow on the page), one quick wipe, cap is back on and we’re ready for lift-off!
PS My dad is the littlest kid in the middle!