PPC#78 Cup, Litre, Gallon Colour Challenge

So I guess it should come as no surprise that after starting my paper crafting classes up again just this week, I’m putting my teacher shoes on again for my Scrapbooker’s Paradise design team challenge today. I’m calling this a “Cup, Litre, Gallon” challenge, and it’s an exercise in using colour effectively in design.

I tried to use lots of stamping – it’s an easy way to create your own colour-coordinated accents and embellishments. The patterned paper is Teresa Collins Fabrications which just happens to be the prize for this week’s challenge as well!

The photo in this layout is my mom and her brother the day we took a walk to the top of the Peace River hill from my grandparent’s house. This is a favourite family walk and it was a good day. I love living in the Peace River country; from my house it’s a half hour’s drive away and we have many favourite spots along the river, depending on whether we’re hiking, camping, mudding or berry picking. I hope you’ll consider playing along with the challenge and letting me know your favourite colour strategies (visit the blog to do my “lesson”) and remember that I mentioned earlier putting on my “teacher shoes.” I am very distracted as I post, drooling over a new shoe company that I found online, Irregular Choice. Look at these beauties!

Okay, they’re not really teacher shoes, I suppose. But they are wonderful! Have a great long weekend!


Playing in Paradise #75: Summer Vacation

This week at Scrapbooker’s Paradise we are celebrating that great North American tradition: summer vacation. I’m just back from a week of holiday at my in-laws’ in Saskatchewan (my suitcase isn’t even unpacked yet!) so while I didn’t have summer vacation pictures printed yet, I did have some great shots from an early summer Sunday afternoon drive that I thought would be fun to scrapbook. I like to scrap my photos before they get old, you know?

It’s been a while since I did a double layout. I basically kept the background design the same between the two pages, and arranged my photos and embellishments to suit each individual page, keeping in mind the need for the two pages to “jive.” I always create my double page layouts side by side so I can make sure they look well together.

I also put the journalling on one page, and the title on the other.

Beautiful memories deserve beautiful pages, don’t you think? How are you going to scrap your summer vacation? Or maybe you have photos from last year’s vacation still waiting to be scrapbooked? Why not jump on the Playing in Paradise bandwagon? And if you don’t do layouts, that’s okay! The theme is summer vacation so you can interpret that any way you like. Deadline is Thursday noon, and you can get the rest of the details and a look at the rest of the design team’s projects on the Scrapbooker’s Paradise blog.

Under the Sea: Playing in Paradise #71


How’s your week been? Mine started out really promising and then quickly went downhill. Just a lot of little things that kept flying at me like bugs on a windshield; after a while all the guts start to affect your perspective, if you know what I mean!

Even a bad day can change quickly though, so I believe in keeping a good attitude no matter what’s going on. I was reminded of that when I scrapped the photos below. I’m still gradually working through the pictures from our big vacation in early 2011. On this day we had drive down along the Oregon coast on a rainy February morning and it was so cold when we got out to view the ocean. A few miles down the highway though the sun came out and it was beautiful – everything changed when the sun appeared. I like comparing the photos and remembering how quickly our day changed from gloom to fun!

The theme for this week’s challenge is “Under the Sea” but I literally have no undersea-themed stamps so I went with a general ocean theme instead. I like using a mix of blues and a flourish that looks like a big splash to me.

I really like the font of these alpha stickers from Crate Paper’s Pretty Party collection. I won the whole line from a Crate Paper giveaway, but you can buy it at Scrapbooker’s Paradise since it’s in their new arrivals along with several other paper lines I just have to have.

Oh, these photos make me yearn for another vacation! We may not go far this year so maybe we’ll just have to plan a big trip that we can save for for a year or so. Hawaii, maybe?

Will you take the time to play along this week with our undersea theme? Check out the rest of the design team’s projects here and then add your own to the linky list before noon on Thursday, June 21st. Thanks for dropping by today and have a great weekend!



Siding the Shop: Playing in Paradise Texture Challenge

I had a little smile on my face when I found out about that “texture” was the prompt for this week’s Playing in Paradise challenge. I’m an artist! I know all about texture and what it can add to a project. And one secret I can tell you is that texture doesn’t always mean adding lumps and bumps. As a watercolour artist, I am always looking to add the illusion of texture, and, done right, this can be so beautiful and really make a painting interesting.

Wade and I spent three weeks last fall putting siding on our shop. I am not really a handy-woman, but I do know how to measure precisely, and the cutter I used to cut the siding was remarkably like a guillotine paper cutter, so I was able to be a good helper to my hard working man while he balanced on scaffolding and screwed it all to the building. The hardest part was passing a twelve-foot, wobbly strip of siding way up to Wade without chipping the edges or (horrors) breaking it in half!

For this layout I challenged myself to add texture not just with embellishments, but through stamping. I used a distressed dots stamp from Glitz Design to create my background using black, grey and red inks. More texture came in the form of cork stickers used to create part of my title, and natural elements like cotton twine, a wooden button and some mini wooden clothespins. I did a little search for “wooden” elements on the Scrapbooker’s Paradise store site and hit the jackpot – you will want to check it out!

Then I went a little more traditional, adding brads in colours that matched my paper (Simple Stories Year-O-Graphy line) and a few stickers. I love layering in scrapbooking, and that’s probably why even though I use Photoshop for work stuff, I don’t use it for layouts. I love handling product!

How do you add texture to your projects? Wanna play along and maybe win some good stuff from Scrapbooker’s Paradise? Check out the blog today, be inspired by the design team, and have a wonderful weekend!


A Watercolour Exercise and Prima Painted Canvas

Right now I have no classes on the agenda. Feels a little weird, and a lot liberating. I needed this break.

My studio is a disaster area. Right after I decided to take a break from classes, six cases of canvases pre-ordered from Opus arrived. I will be doing mixed media classes, but not for a while.

Yesterday I started a painting; actually, I hesitate to call it a painting because the word evokes ideas of art galleries and framing, and what I really need is to be free to experiment without the pressure of a positive outcome.

What I like: The expressive feel of this exercise.

What I don’t like: Needs more variation in value and a more developed composition.

What I want to do: Find my “zone,” released from expectations and rules.

I also have done a little combining with painting and scrapbooking. Check out this page:

The background is Prima canvas, which has a pattern printed on it in beige. I painted it with watercolour paint (see my video tutorial here) and then used markers to outline and doodle and did a little stamping as well! Just love it.

I did some sorting and I now have a full portfolio of paintings I’m not going to frame but don’t want to throw away, and a box of stamped cards that I will be donating to a worthy cause. Any suggestions? Many of them are too girly to give to Operation Write Home.

The Black Stuff layout

Hi Friends! Today is Friday – don’t that feel good? Today is the busiest day of the week for me – it’s just going to be nuts! But fun stuff – cause it’s Friday!

Today at Scrapbooker’s Paradise we’re doing another of Allison’s great sketches – I love how I can use her sketches for either cards or layouts, or whatever I want – they are very versatile! And if you create something inspired by the sketch, you just might win some great scrap goodies!

The photos in my layout were taken during the first barbeque of spring last year, and I love my daughter’s expressions in these pics – she was clowning for the camera!

I used paper from My Mind’s Eye, some great chipboard letters from Cosmo Cricket which inspired my title, and then just had fun arranging things to suit me. I think it still resembles the sketch, do you?

I also had to make a marshmallow roasting stick for my page – I die cut a branch using a Tim Holtz die and then used puffy paint to create the marshmallows! When you have as much paper crafting stuff as I do, you can make almost anything!

Oh, these photos just make me giggle! And that’s why I scrapbook – I get to enjoy fun moments like this all over again!

Won’t you visit the Scrapbooker’s Paradise blog, check out the design team projects and play along? We’d love to have you!


Two My Mind’s Eye Challenges and an Altered Record Album

I bought a vintage record at an antique store earlier this year – it’s a beautifully illustrated story of Rapunzel, and I knew as soon as I saw it that I would use the album case and records to make a scrapbook for my seven-year-old daughter. It’s still in the process of being completed, and I want to share the whole thing SO BADLY but for now I’m going to share just two pages that I created using My Mind’s Eye products and their April challenges.

I made this layout, the back page of the album, using the My Mind’s Eye April sketch:

Seeing as it’s only one photo, it’s a rather loose interpretation. I die cut a pretty frame using my Silhouette, and ended up cutting a Stella & Rose die cut into two pieces for the layout title. I have at least three different MME paper lines on this layout!

The next layout is all about shapes – first off, the octagon inspired concept which is another My Mind’s Eye April challenge:

Again I used my Silhouette, this time to die cut a honeycomb mask. Just for fun, I added flowers to a few of the honeycombs. I laid this over my background paper and misted with Glimmer Mist. I added a little spatter using a darker shade of Glimmer Mist – anyone want to give me some tips for mister bottles that have NEVER worked? I’ve rinsed, and shook and poked and nothing helps. Hate that!

Yes, that is a record making up the base of my layout! The album stores the records in kraft paper pockets and so the pockets and the records both became part of my album. I love that the photo peeks out from the hole in the middle of the pocket when the page is stored!

Oh, and in showing this you get a peek at another album page – yes, I am maximizing my album by adding pages on hinges – isn’t that fun?

I am having so much fun making this album, loving my daughter through scrapping her personality, and if all goes well, I’ll be able to show you the full album next week. Mark your calendars! :)

Playing in Paradise #62: Biker Boy Layout

Don’t forget to enter my wee giveaway by commenting on my 1500th post!

I’ve been so inspired this week in my scrapbooking – of course when I’m scrapping I feel like I should be painting, but I go where the drive takes me as much as I can. Not to mention getting to use the new products I ordered over the last few weeks!

After finishing my son’s Golden Book mini album, I had a few photos I still wanted to document for my main scrapbook, and a sheet of stickers from Simple Stories “Awesome” line to play with. I like Allison’s Playing in Paradise sketch challenges, because her sketches are so open-ended that I find they work well as cards or layouts, and there’s a lot of room for clean and simple interpretations or a more layered look, which is what I gravitate toward.

My boy loves motorbikes. I have a feeling his teen years will be nervous ones for his mom! One night at bedtime I was asking him if he would want to drive a car or a truck when he gets his driver’s licence and he said dreamily, “How about a motorbike?!” I love our bedtime conversations!

These sticker sheets are such a great way to unify a layout. Too often I scramble through my embellishments trying to mix and match and it takes time and sometimes just more genius and creativity than I have. For this layout almost all the embellishments are from the same sticker sheet; I  just found a few more star charms to include to add a little more dimension.

Titles are hard for me. I always leave them until last and then don’t have space for them. I’m trying to do better, because I love a good title. For this one I stamped the word “Biker” and heat embossed it with clear embossing powder. Then I inked the kraft cardstock with cranberry ink, and stamped flames around the edges. Kind of rustic and definitely masculine. I just have to say also that I love the base paper I used for this layout – it’s My Mind’s Eye, of course!

Let Allison’s sketch inspire you and play along with us this week! There’s always a great prize, and the deadline is Thursday noon. Visit the Scrapbooker’s Paradise blog to see the rest of the design team entries and to submit your project.

A Dr. Suess themed scrapbook page!

I like to dabble in all kinds of creative pursuits. When I was fifteen, I wrote and illustrated a “magazine” I called the “Frenetic Gazette” and I had so much fun writing articles, editorials, and cartoons and trying to make everything just as funny as possible. My family were my readership and they always laughed at my jokes!

Canadian Scrapbooker did a Dr. Suess theme for a recent publication call and I had to play along. While my layout didn’t get chosen for the magazine, it is a fun way to create a layout and perfectly suited the photos I had of my girls on the rides at the fair. Plus I love the play on words in my title – we used to joke about naming one of our kits “County” Fehr, and maybe a daughter named “Sordida” and a son named “Un”!

It’s a simple layout but I wanted to keep the focus on the journaling. What about you? Do you ever write poetry? Mine is always funny!