Thursday, 17 April 2014

What's Blowing in the Wind with MME Now and Then

The sun is shining where I am.  Hope you are similarly blessed. What's the bet the weather will hold for the long weekend ?

The good weather has inspired me to create a couple of cheerful layouts.

Firstly, I made a kite using some patterned paper and hid it in the clouds. That made me smile.

I also made some pin wheels out of  1 1/2" patterned paper. It was quite fiddly to fold at that size but I think they looked sweet.

Both layouts are about a trip to Berlin Zoo last Christmas.  My teenage boys actually asked to visit! The animal photos provided the following narrative ...starting with a bored yawning tiger ( yeah, right ! ) followed by the winking sea lion ( really ? ) and the two nodding sea lions ( LOL ).

The second layout features my 18 year old feeding the goats.

It showed that a lot of fun can be had at the zoo, whatever your age. When did you last visit the zoo ? Maybe this Easter is the perfect opportunity.

You can find the Now & Then range here.

Blogged with love by Ifa.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Love You More

Morning folks. We are on half term here but there are no fun days out for us - Sam has chicken pox, not a mild case either! So I'm afraid today's post is a quick one from me. I ordered the Elle's Studio Love You More Papers  expecting them to feature more red than pink. They are definitely more pink than red though. I have used pink papers for LO's of my boys before but this range just happened to suit a few photos of my niece's last weekend with us. She likes to sleep here with her cousins whilst her parents have to have a "sleepover" at Grandma's. My current favourite embellishments - Sarahscards Flair Badges - feature on these layouts as well as some of the gorgeous cork stickers available in the shop. 

For this last LO I added some Simple Stories Homespun paper and one of their Sn@p Cuts. The LOVE die cut on the page above is also a Sn@p Cut.

I hope your half term is going better than mine! Don't forget to leave us links to your work, we love to come and have a look.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Me and my shadow

Hello ladies! It's Tracie here with you again.

Have you ever rediscovered a product that you'd forgotten about? That happened to me recently with the wonderful Hero Arts shadow inks.

Many moons ago in my card-making days I used to use them a lot, then they just seemed to disappear from the market, or maybe I wasn't shopping in the right places!!

Well the good news is, the shop now has a fantastic range of colours available and my love of them has been reawakened!

So, what, I hear you ask, is so special about shadow inks?
Well I'm glad you asked!!
I just love the subtlety of them, they are so much softer than normal ink pads and so you can create beautiful backgrounds that don't overpower the rest of your layout and of course, as suggested by their name, they are great for creating shadows and adding depth!

My first layout showcases a couple of photos of me and my other half with the flowers my son and daughter bought us as a 'Thank you' for all our help with their wedding last year.

I punched a few circles out of the Amy Tan pal paper from the plus one range and used the negative as a mask to ink through to create a shadow

My second layout is my stepson with my gorgeous grandson.

Again I used the plus one range from American crafts. I used a template and of course my shadow ink to mark out a circle of dots ready to position my gems, to represent the roller coaster in the photo.

and finally a layout about the kittens that I found myself fostering last year!

this time I used the shadow ink to stamp a couple of cameras, although this particular stamp is no longer available in the shop there are a few really good alternatives here!

So, if you haven't tried them already, I hope I have given you some incentive to give shadow inks a go?!
But, if you get as addicted to them as I am, I refuse to take any responsibility!
'See' you soon

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

{Project Life with Jen N}

Today I am sharing with you the next batch of completed project life weeks in my 2014 album.

For the first couple of weeks I am sharing, I was still using the same batch of supplies as in my last post - that is the following:
Project Life Core Kit - Slate
Studio Calico Wanderlust - Labels
Simple Stories Homespun - Instasquares, papers, stickers
Dear Lizzy - Puffy Hearts
Miscellaneous papers from Amy Tangerine Plus One, Studio Calico Lemon Lush & Studio Calico Wanderlust

Week seven included some illnesses, teething and a fair amount of grouchiness. Despite that I managed to get a spread that included some happy photos and plenty of journalling. I have heard plenty of people talking about social media and its ability to make us feel inadequate in our accomplishments and our everyday lives. I came across the concept of the 'highlight reel' and I liked it immediately. The saying goes something along the lines of not comparing your everyday with other people's highlight reel. People do tend to put the best bits out there onto the internet, be it through photos, facebook, instagram, or scrapbooking. One part of project life I adore is telling the true story. Admitting that this week was kind of a lost cause. That really all we did was sit on the sofa and cuddle. That I told my son off umpteen times before breakfast. Recording the everyday, good and bad, is part of what makes this project so great for me, and I hope my kids (and me!) will enjoy reading about those little things in the future.

Week eight was definitely a better week for us! There were family photos, crazy antics with pants, sibling cuddles, and a new project for me (which always makes me happy - I love starting new things!).

I wanted to include a couple of photos from our family walk, but I didn't feel it was enough to add a whole insert, so I just added a little flap to one of the pockets. I simply used washi tape to hold them together, and the top photo sits outside of the page protector. I am ok with that, since it is between page protectors anyway, and it is a digital image that it backed up. You could always use a 6x4" protector and attach that in the same way.  I like how the sensible photo is visible immediately, but lifting the flap shows you the slightly crazier version! (We need to teach the baby about funny faces. She will learn.)

For week 9 I switched out my box of supplies to start with some new ones. This time I have used the following:
My Minds Eye Now & Then collection (elements from Mildred, Dorothy, and Milo)
Theresa Collins Daily Stories
Me and My Big Ideas white sticker book
Sarah's Cards Flair

Week nine involved more illness, doctors trips and hospital trips, dressing up, more crazy faces and a birthday party. Yes there is a bit of a theme to our year - dressing up and crazy faces have played a big role in project life 2014 so far! As have illness and hospitals, about which I am less thrilled. Let's hope this is the end of it. 

The MME letter stickers pack is great! You can't tell very easily from the stock picture but you actually get four sheets of stickers in the pack. Each has an alphabet and words, which are really usable and include multiples of things like the days of the week and 'date', 'place', 'time'.

Finally, for now, week ten. Pancake day, a new highchair, some selfies, and at last a bit of sunshine meant a trip to the park and baby girl's first go on the swings (a success!). The Sarah's Cards flair badges are definitely my new favourite thing - the designs are so versatile and I love the little bit of dimension on an otherwise fairly flat project. I do add a few little bits on foam dots, or a bit of wood veneer here and there but in the main I don't add much bulk as this project takes up enough albums as it is!

That's it from me today. Now I'm off to browse the shop and choose some new products for the next few weeks. What hardship! 

Jen xxx

Monday, 24 March 2014

Make you own modelling paste.

Hi Tracy G here, this month I decided to have a play with one of the new Teresa Collins stencils.
There are actually three stencils in the pack, but I chose to only use this one for my projects this month.

I made two framed home decor items, one to give as a gift, and one for my own home.
I wanted to add a bit of dimension to the images, so I went on the hunt for some modelling paste, (which unfortunately Sarah isn't stocking in the shop). Whilst trawling through the internet, I came across a recipe to make your own paste, so gave it a go. 

Just mix 1/4 cup a baby powder, 1 tbsp of PVA glue, and 1 tbsp of acrylic paint into a nice smooth paste, and apply through the stencil using an old bank card.

As you can see when dried the paste gives a slightly raised image. Also an advantage of making your own paste, is you can add which ever colour paint you want. So I made some paste using brown paint.

Here are my two finished projects. I've added some pearls to the white on white one, and a few punched butterflies and pearls to the brown one.

I also got a pack of American Crafts chalk markers to try, then forgot to use them, duh. So I made this really simple card using the black one. I really love the finish the markers produce, just like black board paint.

Finally I made this new home card for our friends, and used gold ink applied with a small sponge through the stencil, and added a small punched heart.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Pretty Painterly with Amy Tan Plus One and Maggie Holmes Styleboard

Hello people.  How are you ? It is Ifa with you today, sharing a couple of "Painterly" layouts.

I was excited to see the hand drawn Amy Tan titles in the Plus One Range, I ordered the rub ons. I also ordered the cute puffy stickers.  But I preferred the papers from Maggie Holmes Styleboard collection so I ordered those instead. I think the combination of bright splash of Amy Tan colours on sweet Maggie Holmes papers is just so pretty!

I wanted a painted base for my layout so I added some splashes of paint using Tim Holtz distress stain.  I then added a few circles from Maggie Holmes Styleboard Vellum Shapes before applying some rub ons on top. Ensure that the paint is dry before doing this.  Also note that the rub on does not apply as easily on the vellum as it does on paper so take care over this.

Next I arranged some photos and some vellum shapes for the layout.

After putting the background and photos together, I added a few more vellum shapes and some blackboard banner stickers proclaimed the title.

And this is my finish layout about a walking tour we did in Berlin.

My next layout followed the same recipe as you can see from the close-up. I used more circle vellum shapes to accompany photos from our Pool table.

And the finished layout...

What do you think ? Will this combo of products work for you ?

Friday, 14 March 2014

Sketch Challenge

Thanks for all your entries! A winner will be announced soon. Watch this space:)

Saturday, 8 March 2014

Scrapping Selfies

Hi all. Jen G here with a really quick post about scrapping selfies. Everyone loves a good selfie these days but they don't always turn out as great photos! These are a few silly snaps of my boys and me taken on my phone in the park a few weeks ago. I recently ordered a packet of the Simple Stories Instasqaures to play with and they worked perfectly with these photos. The packet contains twenty-four 2x2, sixteen 3x3 and twelve 4x4 squares that coordinate with a range - in this case "A Charmed Life".  The Expressions Stickers came in useful to embellish the pages and Sarahscards brand new flair badges might be my new favourite thing in the world E V E R! Seriously, go and check them out here

I have ordered some more of the Sarahscards flair badges and I have a feeling a few will sneak into all of my future orders. Don't forget to leave us links to any pages you have made with our amazing new products :)