Saturday, March 30, 2013

Plain Pages

I’ve made about a bazillion Boy Scout pages.  Seriously.  I count seven 4-5 inch thick albums, and I’m only caught up to 2007 plus one Eagle Scout book.  I still have three years to go.  That’s a lot  of Boy Scout pages. 

One of these days I’m going to compile the best of them into a book and sell it.  You might think I’m joking, but if you are the parent of a Boy Scout, you know how frustrating it is to find ideas for all those scrapbook pages.  There’s just so many activities, and they all start to look the same.  Sometimes you get to the point where you just want to slap the pictures on the paper and get it over and done.

Today’s page is one of those kinds of pages.  This was a Layout-A-Day page, and the prompt was to scrapbook a nature photo.  There are always nature photos on Boy Scout campouts.  That was the easy part.  The hard part is making this layout stand out from the 20-30 others just like it.  It’s not easy, and I don’t think I mastered it with this one.  This page is pretty boring.  It lacks “umpfh”. 

I posted it here because I think we all have pages like this – pages that, for whatever reason, lack that special something that makes us like the page.  In short, boring.  I keep thinking that if I look at it long enough, I will get inspired to do something cool that will make it better.  It’s happened before.  I know a lot of people who just wouldn’t care.  The pictures are on the page for people to see and that’s all that counts.  I don’t know if I can do that.  I’m way too much of a perfectionist.  Still, I’m tempted to just let it go.  I need to be less of a perfectionist and learn to love simple pages.  I just don’t know if it is in me.  I’m always drawn to the more complex pages with a lot of detail and eye candy.  Plain just isn’t my style.

The way I see it, there are two kinds of scrappers…the ones who tinker with a boring page until they’re satisfied, and those who just stick it in the album and move on to the next page.  Which kind of scrapper are you? 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Matchbook Gift Card Holder

A while back, our 3rd Wednesday stamp club challenge was gift card holders.  It seems we are always looking for clever ways to give people gift cards.  I found instructions for making this one that’s shaped like a matchbook.  I thought it was really cute, and it’s very simple.  

You can find the tutorial here:

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

A Vast Improvement

Observant, I am not.  Sometimes I get so busy looking at the forest that I miss the trees!  I got ready to post today’s layout and realized the letter “I” was missing from my title.  Evidently I posted it to the LOAD 213 group that way, too, and no one mentioned it.  Oops! 

One very quick fix later, and it’s good to go.  Luckily it was cut from a die I own and I still had a scrap of the same paper.  I can only impagine what would have happened if it had been from a die I have no access to! 

Have you ever had to “fix” a page because some element went missing?  What did you do?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

365 Week 13

Congratulations!  You’ve made it through week 12 of our 365 Day Challenge which means you have been creative 77 days in a row!  That is an incredible accomplishment, and I hope you are giving yourself a little pat on the back for making it this far!  And even if you haven’t done a project every day, but you are still reading this blog and working on some projects with us, you are still building your creativity and challenging yourself, which will make you better at your craft.

Now, as we start on week 13, the last week of the first quarter of 2013, take some time to reflect on the projects you’ve don so far.  Look at them really hard and think about the challenges you faced in completing each one.  Do your projects speak to your power word if you have one?  What have you learned about yourself?  Do you have a style or technique that you go to all the time?  Have you developed any patterns or routines in the way you work?  Keep those things in mind as you start the next quarter of projects and see if you can break those patterns and routines or build some new ones.  The idea is to stretch yourself, explore, and grow your creativity until you can be creative in any environment or under any circumstances.  Now wouldn’t that be a wonderful thing?

Day 78 - If I died today, it would be because…

I am such a goof!  Even though I helped come up with these prompts, sometimes I forget what I intended and don’t understand my own prompts!  I have them all listed in a spreadsheet with no gridlines between them, so when I read the prompt for day 78, I thought it said, “If I died today, it would be because -- Watch TV for a commercial and use that as your prompt.”  I happened to be watching late at night, so the first commercial I ran across was for some kind of exercise program.  Sadly, it is pretty fitting these days since I’m so busy I don’t have time for my regular exercise.

Day 79 - Watch tv for a commercial and use that as your prompt

So I mentioned I’m a goof, right?  Half of this prompt showed up on a second line in my spreadsheet, so I read it as, “Your prompt”.   I decided to take one of my paper scraps and go from there.  Whenever I paint with acrylics, I only use the primary colors plus black, white, and brown.  That means I’m always mixing paint, and there’s always some leftover on my palette.  Rather than waste it, I will grab a scrap piece of paper and paint on that until the paint is gone.  This prompt began as one such scrap piece.  The red-orange flower was created by dipping my brush in the paint and pressing it flat in a fan pattern.  I really liked the way it looked, and was very afraid to start adding to it because I didn’t want to ruin the look of the flower, but the quote I found gave me the courage to just “start somewhere”.  From there, it just developed on its own.  I was afraid of ruining the original painting, but as it turns out, I love the result!

Day 80 - My hero

This whole piece was inspired by a movie poster.  I tried to recreate the computer-generated neutral background with paint, and yes, that is Mr. Crafty Neighbor himself – my hero.  The font is called “Adventure”.

Day 81 - Define perfection

This prompt immediately made me think of the Pink song, “Perfect”, so I started with the pink background.  I couldn’t resist adding the lyrics, and then I recalled seeing some of the Tim Holtz Idea-ology mirrored sheets.  I wanted to use my Stampin’ Up Curly Label punch to cut the sheet to fit in the stamped area, but the mirror was too thick.  It fit into the punch, but it just would not cut through.  It did mark the mirror, though, which gave me the idea to put the mirror into the punch, squeeze it down tight, and then use a pencil to trace the shape.  It was a synch to cut it out by hand, and it fits perfectly.

Day 82 - I could teach…

This piece was prompted by a discussion in the car on a ride home from a crop.  It was inspired by the piece that Christen made on Day 12.  Obviously, I am not nearly as talented as Christen!  I’m hoping she’ll have some more pages to share as soon as she gets moved into her new apartment!

Day 83 - My own personal prison

I knew exactly what I wanted to do with this page immediately, but was frustrated trying to come up with just the right wording for her forehead.  I never did find the phrase I was looking for, but settled on this one for lack of something better.  I’m also not crazy about the way it looks.  I colored it with Copic markers.  I was going for a “tattoo” effect, but lack the artistic skills/knowledge to get that look.  As with many of my art pieces…it will just have to do.

Day 84 - If I could change the world

I’m not sure what got me on this song lyrics kick, but this song made me think of Eric Clapton and I couldn’t get it out of my head.  The background was a piece of map-themed scrapbook paper and I used my distress inks and a sponge to color it in.  The leaf stamps were from the Stampin’ Up set French Foliage which I stamped with brown Memento ink and colored with Copic markers.  I also practiced my skills at creating a shadow with the markers.

That’s it for Week 12!  I hope it is helping you to be more creative and to explore more possibilities with your art  -  I know it has for me. Here’s your prompts for this week:

Something I am proud of
Look through a magazine, clip a picture, and use it as the prompt
Pearls of wisdom

Monday, March 25, 2013


I wish Spring would make up its mind and get here already!  One day last week, we had 80°+ weather and this weekend it was cold and wet.  What will tomorrow bring?  I’m more than a little worried about my poor flowers that have begun to sprout.  I hope this cold doesn’t kill them.  If it did, the only flowers I might see this spring are the ones on this card.

Supplies by Stampin’ Up!