CKC Challenge #1, July ’22

It is challenge time over on the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog. Our hostess for the month, Tina was inspired by all the tickets in the inspiration kit, plus the song “Ticket to Ride” by the Beatles. First off, let’s take a look at the whole kit, which is the May Round Trip 12×12 add-on kit from Citrus Twist Kits. To the right of the main kit you’ll see all those ticket embellishments as inspiration!

With the inspiration of tickets… Go for it! Load up your project with tickets! Now that we have our inspiration, let’s dive into how I interpreted the challenge. Full details in the video below and of course the blog version follows.

I didn’t “load up” my project with tickets, but I did highlight a fun faux letterpress technique to create some tickets. The letterpress process involves pressing an inked letter/word form into specialty thick paper to get a crisp depressed texture that also stamps with ink. We can do something similar with an embossing folder.

The simple instructions are to ink one side of your open embossing folder. Each side will give you a slightly different look. Experiment first! And just a note: folders with text need to be inked on the correct side to avoid backwards text. Ask me how I know. Ha ha.

Carefully place your paper onto the dry side of the folder and close gently to avoid slipping and ink smearing. Run through your die cutting machine with the correct sandwich to press that ink into your embossed paper. Done. It is that simple

Notice the tickets here? I created them with the letterpress technique and then cut them apart into ticket strips to embellish my layout.

So that is my take on the ticket challenge. I hope you can check out the other designers takes on this challenge! Don’t forget to show off your stuff over on the CKC Facebook group, or tag us on Instagram @counterfeitkitchallenge or use #counterfeitkitchallenge. We love to see your work!

The World of Vellum

Vellum is a product that I love and try to keep a stock on hand at all times. I want to share my love of vellum with you with two videos. The first is all about ways you can use vellum and the second is putting together a layout using a handful of the items I created in the first video. Plus the second video has an additional little vellum technique that you may find handy. As always, if you want the blog version, please keep reading!

Vellum Techniques Video
Layout process video using vellum

So let’s take a gallery journey through the techniques I mentioned. While each photo is captioned, the gallery system’s captions are a bit hard to read, so let me list it out more clearly.

  1. Layered Dimming
  2. Pattern Making
  3. Cluster Layering
  4. Photo Mats
  5. Stamping
  6. Heat Embossing
  7. Backing Cutfiles
  8. Printed journaling
  9. Alcohol Ink (No expensive Yupo “paper” needed)
  10. Embossing Folders
  11. Pockets
  12. Windows
  13. Shakers
  14. Envelopes
  15. Home decor — Votive Holders
  16. Home decor — Stained Glass Window technique + project

Once I had created a pile of goodies out of vellum I turned to creating a layout. If card making is your thing, these ideas totally work for that too! Now, not all the things I created are going to work on one project so the process of finding what will work, and especially giving up on what won’t work, is interesting. I tried really hard to get stamped flowers on my project and they just weren’t working. The flowers got lost in the amount of pattern shining through the vellum. In the end I colored vellum with a marker (that is your bonus technique!) and punched out solid colored flowers to sprinkle on my project.

Layout using vellum

Don’t forget that vellum can be tricky to attach since you can see the glue right through it! If you need ideas on how to overcome that, I’ve got you covered there too! This post shows off vellum attachment ideas. Of course you can take the short cut right to the source video.

I hope this post gave you lots of ideas for incorporating vellum into your paper crafting projects, and even some home decor. I’ll be back soon with more ideas. Until then, have a artful day.

Layout using a sketch

I used to begin every layout I made with a sketch. Often times it was my own sketch quickly drawn out on an index card. Pre-made sketches has always had a role in my crafting as well. These days I usually just go with the flow when I sit down to create. I still love me a good sketch though and that is what I am here to share today.

The original sketch and an alternative sketch choice.

You can check out all the details in the process video or keep reading for some quick notes on this project.

The original sketch featured a cascade of hexagons from left to right on the page. (You can see the sketch in more detail in the video.) I certainly captured that idea. I also added in more hexagon elements to highlight areas on my busy background paper.

I’ll leave you with a couple more closeups. I’ll be back soon with more crafty goodness. Until then, have an artful day.

Guest Designer Layout

I love participating in LOAD, the LayOut A Day challenge. Alice, who runs the ScrapHappy membership group which hosts LOAD, always invites the ScrapHappy community members to participate as guest designers for the month long challenge. That way inspiration comes from a very wide range of scrappers who share all manner of layouts and styles. In May I brought my favorite style — watercolor— to the guest design spot for day 22.

You can check out all the details in the process video or keep reading for some quick notes on this project.

LOAD offers prompts each day. While daily participants don’t have to follow the prompts, guest designers do. That is the joy of being the guest designer! My prompts were about springtime and to use hexagons. So I chose my favorite photos from the recent spring shots and created a stacked die cut title with rainbow watercolor.

The hexagon prompt completely reminded me of bees who are waking up and getting to work in spring time, so I used bees as part of my design. I also used hexagons to represent flower buds that burst open with color. As you can see I literally had the watercolor burst out of the hexagon shape. I emphasized that bursting sensation further with stitching.

I also added more layers with different sized hexagon watercoloring/stenciling, shadow stamping (bee images!) and some die cut bee embellishments. This was a really fun layout! I hope you think so too.

I’ll leave you with a couple more closeups. I’ll be back soon with more crafty goodness. Until then, have an artful day.

Documenting Covid: Mask mandates

I’m on a journey this year to get more stories in my covid album. I started this album during a Crop & Create event class where we created pocket pages using a calendar set up to document an entire year. I knew that this would be perfect for covid! I did purchase a second set of kit supplies since I knew that covid would last longer than a year!

The most details are outlined in this video

Here is a quick look at the base of my album.

I do have a few independent 12×12 pages in there already. In fact I have this t-page spread about when the mask mandates ended in 2021.

And those pages lead right into this new layout about how the mask mandates returned just a couple of months after ending thanks to the delta variant.

The key to this layout was using newspaper (can they really be called newspapers anymore??) headlines from the internet. I took screen shots of the headlines, sized them all the same and then printed them out on photo paper. I was sure to record the news source and the date as part of the layout flow.

The other piece to this layout was the title I created in Cricut using some of the newest features in the software. One of my biggest complaints about the Cricut has been the wimpy features in the software. Well, that seems to be changing! Here is a tutorial on how I created this title.

As always, I hope this gave you some ideas for your own scrappy life!

Interactive Layout: Lift-a-flap

I was inspired by 1) the sheet of paper from Pinkfresh studio pictured below and 2) a prompt from the LOAD challenge to tell a story about community. Those two prompts came together to create a very fun interactive layout!

PinkFresh Studio, Life Right Now Collection, “Weekend”

All the little locations on that map paper reminded me of favorite spots in my own town that I wanted to document. I knew I wanted to add lots of little photos to each of those spots. But I didn’t want to cover up all of the fun map paper. What to do?? Create 15 flaps on the page to open up to reveal the photo beneath!

All the details are easiest to see in this video. But I do have some still shots to follow that I try to explain the process.

Page with flaps closed
Page with flaps open

I used a square punch to create a template to trace on my layout. I cut only around three sides of each square to create all the flaps. Once I cut those flaps through my pattern paper I did have to back it with another sheet of paper. That way I would have somewhere to glue my photos and not just lots of holes through my paper! In the process I sandwiched a binding strip in between those papers. This strip has holes punched in it to fit into a ringed album, and it is thick/sturdy enough to stand up to plenty of touching. Since this layout is so very interactive, it can’t slide into a page protector! You can get a better look at the binding strip here.

On the back of the layout I created a pocket with vellum to tuck in about 3 pages of journaling! Yes, I can get wordy, but this IS a layout about an entire town over 20 years of experience!

I hope this project inspired you in some way to tell more stories in your life. If it did spark an idea, leave me a comment and let me know. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

LOAD Day 3 process

I’ve got a layout to share today as part of the Layout A Day challenge. If you don’t know what LOAD is the quick version is we scrapbook every day for a month. There are some other bits and bobs about it but that is the basics.

While we have prompts for LOAD I was inspired by the inspiration for the prompt and not the prompt itself, that being an aquaduct located in Wales. This aquaduct connects parts of the UK’s canal system. Canal were used historically to moved goods about the region until trains were invented and became dominant. Today canals are recreational and are still traveled by similar boats, called narrow boats. Let me tell you more in the video as I craft and chat!

I’ve pulled out some brand new Vicki Boutin Sweet Rush papers and chipboard as well as just a tiny touch of Heidi Swapp’s Sun Chaser paper to create my layout today. There are also a few other unknown travel themed embellishments on there. I grabbed my photos from YouTube channels that are all about narrow boat life. They were printed to ~1.5″ by 5.5″, which is an odd photo size. But creating a grid layout on the watery background paper all adds up to a nice project. I hope you think so too.

While I have the basics of the layout in place, I do intend to add more journaling on the card tucked into the existing journaling pocket. I’ll likely add an accordion folded journaling note since I feel like I have a lot to say. I’ve done this technique before in this video if you want to really see what I mean.

That is it for now. I’ll be back to share what I create over this upcoming (i)NSD weekend. I hope you have some fun crafting to do this weekend as well!

8.5 x 11 Scrapbooking?

So I’m new to this size and I want to share my adventure using it with you. First off, why use this size of layout? For me this came down to several reasons, in no particular order.

  • Scrapping myself more often means I have fewer photos and need less “real estate” on my layouts.
  • This size product is so easy to find and doesn’t hold a specialty item price tag (think binders and page protectors available at any office supply store.)
  • They can still fit in 12×12 albums if I don’t stick solely with this size or if I find it isn’t really working for me.
  • I’m exploring more hybrid by printing my own pattern papers and I don’t have a wide format printer (that pesky budget thing again)
  • This size album sits nicely on a shelf along side my 12×12 albums. I’ve explored other smaller sizes (6×6, 6×8) and the type-A side of me hated those albums squatting awkwardly on a shelf next to a jumbo 12×12 album.
  • Using that much less paper and plastic is that much more environmentally friendly. I know my hobby is a resource hog and is by no means environmentally friendly. But the whole reduce part of the r”educe, reuse, recycle” mantra is one I can focus on now. I’m already good at the “recycle” part, and the “reuse” part will have to be tackled another day.

There are some drawbacks to this size, but I’ll hold those thoughts for another post as I’m sure the list will grow over time! For now, here are a few of this size that I have done so far. Stay tuned for May 22 when I can reveal a new one that I made as a guest designer.

The one of the left is the most recent and I have a process video up for it. I’ll admit that this one could have used more real estate space but since I was using hybrid and printing my own, this is what I ended up with. In person it looks less crowded, but online I can see it is a very busy page! But that is me anyway, so I’ll go with it. The funny thing… they ALL have hidden journaling. So again, that real estate thing is rearing up. Hmm. Things to think about.

I’m curious to know how you feel about scrapbook sizes? What do you use now? Have you had any thoughts on other sizes? Let me know.

Freebie Friday, April ’22

I love learning, creating and sharing. That is why I offer freebies up to you each month. I have both a layout sketch (in printable pdf as well as editable psd) and an electronic cut file (in svg). This month I was inspired by the birds in my garden! You can see all the details in my reveal video, or read on for the short version.

Here is a closer look at the sketch and the project I created based on this sketch.

You may have noticed that I have a hummingbird cut file on the layout above. Sure enough, that is the cut file I have to offer you this month. My reveal video covers how I colored my hummingbird. Of course you could always back the bird with pattern papers.

Download the pdf sketch here, the psd version here, the cut file here or, head over to my Freebies Page to peruse the catalog of files I have offered in the past. And if you have any ideas for sketch or cut files, I’d love to hear your ideas. I can’t make promises but I can take suggestions!

CKC Challenge #2, April ’22

It is challenge time over on the Counterfeit Kit Challenge blog. Our hostess for the month, Lisa was inspired by the large sentiment elements that are in the kit, especially the Vicki Boutin die cuts. So that lead straight into the second challenge…. go big with your title. Here is a peek at the entire inspiration kit again. See those phrase elements?

It was really easy for me to go big with my title. I’ve done it before and like the effect. The real challenge this time? I didn’t include many of the phrase elements into my kit! I build my kit around the inspiration of Vicki Boutin and Jen Hadfield and I had phrase’s from Jen. But I was really looking for the Vicki sized title pieces. So I did something I don’t normally do, I went and pulled more stuff for my kit. I grabbed more of the Fernwood collection and ended up pulling the puffy phrase sticker sheet to add to this kit/layout.

It feels a little like “cheating”, but you know what? What rule of the universe says I can’t grab something else to add in? There are no rules! So I got over it and did what I felt was right for this layout!

If you want to see the entire process, including a few tips on working with prhase stickers and some small design tips, you can see it all in action in this video.

I hope you can check out the other designers takes on this challenge! Don’t forget to show off your stuff over on the CKC Facebook group, or tag us on Instagram @counterfeitkitchallenge or use #counterfeitkitchallenge. We love to see your work!