Monday, September 28, 2009

Layout of the Week Relaxing in the Hammock

In our family, the hammock is one of our favorite places to relax. These photos were shot on the 4th of July a couple years ago. It was very hot, over 100 degrees. After our morning neighborhood parade, Delaney & our neighbor girl painted their nails, then relaxed in the shade waiting for them to dry. I shot some photos and was very excited about these ones.

When I combined the bold striped pattern of the hammock in the photo and the bold patterns of the fun Creative Cafe papers, I had to rethink my plans. The colors in the photos and the papers coordinated well, but the combination took the focus of this page away from my subject, Delaney. I loved the photos, so I reprinted them in Black & White. I was very happy with the result.

I chose these papers because they all have at least a little red, white or blue in their patterns. It was fun to add the multi color star ribbon from American Crafts. I like how the combination creates a subtle look for this 4th of July layout. Subtlety is not usually a trait I see in my layouts. Most of my 4th of July layouts are "in your face" red, white & blue with fireworks, stars & glitter. It's so nice to expand the horizons of my creativity. I did use my typical m.o. of combining lot's of patterns on this one though. I didn't want to change all of my habits on one layout, it was nice to just change it up a bit.

Go ahead, try something outside your comfort zone on your next project!


Try printing your photos in Black & White when your papers have bold patterns or a combination of patterns.

Try a subtle approach on your next holiday layout. Use colors to convey your holiday message without using holiday themed papers.

Supply List

Creative Cafe Papers, Buttons, Chipboard Shapes, Rub-Ons, Felt Words & Tag

American Crafts Ribbon

Monday, September 21, 2009

Layout of the Week Apple of My Eye

If you've never been apple picking in September in Oregon, you've really got to try it. Delaney was three on this particular apple picking trip. One of the ladies in our mom's group set this trip up as a photo opportunity. She recommended we dress the kids in denim & white shirts, which is always a great combo when you're having photos taken. I probably shot a few hundred photos on this outing. At the time, my digital camera had to be changed from color to black & white and then back again. I did shoot a few color photos that day, but my most favorites, as usual are the black & white ones. There is just something I love about removing the distraction color creates and just concentrating on the subject. Of course I thought I had the best subject in the whole wide world, my daughter!

The large photo on the left page is the best photo I've ever taken of Delaney. It may be the best photo I've ever taken, period. There is just something about her holding out the apple toward the camera to show me the bite she took out of it, the look on her face and the dappled sunlight. When I first had these photos printed, I sent them to all the family members & gave them to a few friends. I even had the friend of a friend ask me if she could have one just because it was such a great photo. Now I didn't do anything special to achieve this photo, there was no coaching or retrying over & over again with the pose. It isn't posed at all, I just happened to click the shutter at the perfect moment. I guess I could say it was meant to be, but I'm pretty sure that good photos come from taking TONS of photos. It probably just boils down to math. The probability that you will take a good photo rises along with the number of photos you take. So keep clicking that shutter & you're bound to end up with a great photo for your next layout!

I shot so many photos that day, I couldn't just use one on my layout. My other favorites are shown on the right page. I love the sequence of three verticals. I just told her to show me her favorite apple & she came up with the poses all on her own. Now, the one in front of the barn was set up by mommy. I do like to plan things from time to time (ha ha!), and having the big barn in the background while the little girl with her bucket of apples stands in the foreground tells the story of the day and helps create the feeling of being there on the farm with her.

I love the red apple paper combined with these black & white photos. You don't have to see a red apple in the photos to know that those apples are red. The red apple diecuts seemed to be perfect backgrounds for my white Sizzix letters. And I was very happy with my decision to use my Creative Memories square punch to punch the scrap paper and leftover photos from this layout to create an eye catching grouping.

This is one of my favorite layouts that I've created in the last few years.

On your next project, use squares of left over paper & photos to create an almost free eye catching element on your layout.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Layout of the Week - Tropical Jake

The photo on this page is the best one I've ever taken of Jake. I knew it was as soon as I saw it on the digital camera screen. Such a cute little boy! I wanted to create a special page for this photo and when these Best Creation papers came in, I knew they were the ones to use. A little sparkle & glaze adds a fun dimension even to a "boy page". I mounted the photo on two layers of cardstock, turquoise and dark brown. I wanted to draw extra attention to the photo with the busy-ness of the photo. I couldn't find an embellishment that really spoke to me. But I did find some pop out die cuts of arrows from Scenic Route. The color palette of the arrows didn't match my papers or photo, which went with each other very well. So I traced my favorite arrow onto the striped paper and cut it out. Then I used my exacto knife to cut a slit along the circle just large enough to slip the end of the arrow through it.

I really liked how the layout looked but something was still missing. I needed to draw a little attention to the arrow, so I drew an outline around it with my dark brown Zig pen.

Even though this layout was very simple and quick to complete, I think it has a bold modern look. So when you're looking for papers for a "boy" page, don't overlook the sparkly, glazed ones...they may be perfect for your project!

Don't forget to snap tons of photos! It will increase the odds of getting just the shot you're looking for!


Use cardstock mats and arrows to set your photo apart.

Try outlining your photos or embellishments with a thick pen. They'll stand out quickly and for FREE!

Don't dismiss sparkly, glazed papers for your boy pages, take a second look.


Best Creation paper

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

GNO - with Delaney at the Miley Concert

This is so cute, I just had to share! Miley Cyrus opened her concert tour in Portland on Monday night and Delaney & I were there. I must say it was a great show, lot's of cool stuff, including a red Harley descending from the ceiling & Miley riding on it over the crowd singing "I Love Rock N Roll"...took me right back to the 80's. It was a fun Girls' Night Out with our friends! If your daughter's a fan & you get a chance, you should definitely go! (One little disclaimer though, Delaney's 8 1/2 & loves Miley latest CD, which has some really rockin' music, I'm not sure if the younger only Hannah Montana music fans would have quiet as much fun, but I did see tons of littler ones there.)

If you go, get there early so you don't miss a chance to have your girl's photo taken with Miley. It's sponsored by Walmart, as is the whole tour. The girls get to put on some jewelry & grab a mike then they stand in front of a green screen for their photo. Then the ladies at the computer put your girl in her choice of venues with Miley, either her dressing room, her tour bus or her on stage. (Usually the girls can only pick one, the line was 30 minutes long, but since there was a mix up & they put Delaney in the wrong venue, they took an extra photo of her.) You get a little lanyard with an email code & some photos of Miley on it, so you can look up your photo & share it at home. This is all FREE, which is awesome, considering the t-shirts are $35!!!! Of course I still bought one for my little Miley fan, but really, they could still make a ton charging 1/2 that!

So here's my little angel in her rock star moments!

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Friday, September 11, 2009

Layout of the Week - Kraft Kuts Boy Layout

I created this week's Layout of the Week as the right half of my last Layout of the Week. I wanted to have pages of both my kids on their swings. The two layouts make a nice double page spread. But either layout could also stand on its own.

For Jake's page, I used the same basic layout as Delaney's: a gold background for the Kraft Kuts bracket die cut paper, a single tinted 4 x 6 photo, matted, journal strips and silver nailhead accents. I really like how the Fancy Pants Kraft Kuts collection has both girl and boy papers.

I printed the photo for this page in color, sepia & blue tint. I really liked how the blue tint looked with the papers used on this page.

I used the same journal strips on this page, but at first, I wasn't sure what to write on them. When I thought about writing on Jake's page, I knew I wanted to write something about his swing. Since he's too young to interview about it himself, I thought it would be fun to ask Delaney his questions. It was a lot of fun to listen to her answers about her little brother.


Use one of the large die cuts that are all the rage right now and center it on a solid cardstock background. These die cuts can also be cut in half or quarters and placed on a solid background.

Create a cohesive layout across two pages by placing the same embellishments on both pages. Nailheads are used in the center of the shapes in the die cuts on both pages.

For a new twist on journaling, try interviewing a sibling of a child too young to talk for himself. It's a lot of fun to hear another point of view, especially one of a chatty little kid!

Supply List

Fancy Pants Kraft Kuts Collection Star Bracket die cut paper
Cardstock in Gold
Cardstock in Navy & Green
Silver Nailheads from Mark Richards
Tinted Photo printed in pink at

Don't forget to check out Ann's Virtual Girls' Night Out! My favorite place to party on Friday home in my pj's anyway! :)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Whimzee's Girls Online: FREE Beginning Scrapbooking Classes!!!

I'm excited to share a post from my other blog Whimzee's Girls Online. I write this blog for the scrapbooking store where I work part time as a "Designer & Blog Girl", well...that's what my business cards say! So if you're in the Portland, Oregon area & looking for a FREE Beginning Scrapbooking Class, we've got just what you need! Beginning Saturday, September 12th, the Whimzee's Girls are teaching a series of 6 FREE 2 hour classes at Hillsboro, Oregon's Main Library and its Shute Park Branch. Check out this post for all the info. As you can tell, I'm pretty jazzed about this! I have put designed all the sketches & kits for the class and I'll be teaching four of the first foray into scrapbook class teaching! Hope you can make it to a class or all six!

Whimzee's Girls Online: FREE Beginning Scrapbooking Classes!!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Layout of the Week - Kraft Kuts Girl Layout

I take photos of everything! Since joining yearbook in junior high, all my friends & family could count on me to always have a camera (sometimes 2 or 3) ready at a moment's notice.

I think it's important to have photos that capture what our every day lives are like. so this day, I shot tons of photos of my kids on their swings. I ended up with one great shot of each kid. that's why I love digital cameras - take tons of shots and only keep the best ones!

I chose the papers for this layout without knowing which photo I'd use. I just knew I loved the Kraft Kuts Floral bracket paper. Then I chose some solid cardstock to match and used silver nail heads as accents.

Because the paper has such a beautiful bold pattern, I chose just one photo for this page. I wanted to end up with as many of the flowers showing as possible. that's how I chose where to place my photo.

For journaling, I thought I'd try the strip technique. I had seen it a few times in other people's layouts and liked how the little blurbs of type looked on the strips. I needed a change from being the one doing all the writing on my pages, so I "interviewed" Delaney about her swing for this page. It was fun to hear her opinions & comments.

And in the spirit of trying something new, I had my photo printed with a pink tint for this page. If you've read many of my posts, you know I have my photos printed using Costco's website. On their site, you have the option of having your photo printed in all sorts of tints. I'm a big fan of sepia and black & white photos, so I usually stick with those, but I decided to branch out for this page. Since I don't trust the computer screen when it shoes me what a color will look like, I had my photo printed in color, black & white, sepia & the pink tint. Yes, I do tend to go a little overboard (I have been called a perfectionist....). I wanted to be sure the pink tint wouldn't clash with my papers. I was pleasantly surprised & love how the pink tint adds that little something special to this layout.


When you really love the pattern of your background paper, use just one photo on the page. This lets the pattern share center stage with your photo.

Use strips of paper for your journaling. They let you write down quick thoughts instead of feeling like you have to write paragraphs for your page.

Interview your kids for your journaling. It's fun to look back & see what they were thinking or what liked when the photos were taken.

Go "outside the box" when printing your photos! Try something new, go with sepia or black & white if you always have your photos printed in color. Or go wild, like I did, and try having your photos printed with a tint.

Supply List

Fancy Pants Kraft Kuts Collection Floral Bracket die cut paper
Cardstock in Gold
Cardstock in Pink & Green
Silver Nailheads from Mark Richards
Tinted Photo printed in pink at


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