Tuesday, January 31, 2012


...blog changes, that is. I discovered last night that the type on my blog was nearly impossible to read. I started messing around and realized it's time to make a few changes. So, excuse the mess while I fix it up.

More Love Story...

Today I can share the second page I made with the Elle's Studio 'It's a Love Story' kit

The photo on this page is one of the out-takes from a Christmas card photo shoot in 2005. Chris was just learning to sit up and kept tipping over. He was tipping in this shot when Marilyn gave him the kiss. Even though it's completely blurry, it is one of my favorite pictures of them of all time.
The little tag on the envelope (it's Pebbles, Inc.) says 'psst, there's a love note inside' and there is. Just a short little thing that maybe Marilyn & Chris will find someday...
Here's a close up of my tag border - I stacked up the numbered tags at the bottom of the paper with a mix of the patterns from the kit:
You can see more 'Love Story' kit projects on the Elle's Studio blog. You can tell the DT really loved working with it!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Elle's Love Story

Happy Saturday...couldn't get here soon enough. It was a crazy week - and today we've got a lot on the plate, but at least tomorrow is free and clear. Planning some serious crafty time and a very long overdue visit to the Scrappers Cove. It snowed just enough last weekend to prevent me from getting up there. Most of the staff is at CHA this weekend shopping for new product. I guess I'll go in and help clear out some of the 'old'. (Funny how fast stuff gets 'old' in this hobby!) Anyway - can't wait until the CHA snapshots start flowing onto the blogs and Facebook pages of my crafty pals. And also getting excited that CHA summer will be here before you know it and I'll be heading to Chicago again.

Today I get to share one of the layouts I made with the Elle's Studio 'A Love Story' kit. By far one of my most favorite kits ever! So here's my page...If you've seen the kit (photo below) it's got lots of red, pink & turquoise, but it's also got a few masculine colors as well. That worked out great in this case with this photo I had of my son & father-in-law:
The ink I used to stamp the doily is a Stampin' Up grey. I'm loving all the grey showing up in the paper lines and used the pops of red to keep it from getting dull.
Images removed for publication - be back soon!
 Aren't these little sewn flowers gorgeous? I used every single one and I'm feeling like I need a dozen more!! The Elle's tags have faux stitching - I added a little more:
 Here's another view of the flower and the journaling:

And here's the kit if you haven't seen it yet. 
This is a limited edition and will be gone when it's gone. Seriously versatile and seriously fun. Love this kit to pieces. (no pun intended!) For more inspiration, stop by the blog and check out more pages made from this kit - you can tell that everyone on the Elle's design team loved working with it!

Thanks for stopping by today!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Some more Elle's...

Happy to report I survived the neverending Tuesday - too many appointments and obligations to list...just so happy it's finally Wednesday!

Today I've got the rest of my Elle's Studio gallery projects for this month. For this page I cut up a whole bunch of Pennants. Love those Pennants!
Here are the close ups:
I discovered the hard way that the best way to store twine is on a round clothespin or spool. That way it comes off the roll with a nice twist:

I also made these cards - lots of fresh Elle's with the help of some SRM too...
For this card, I stitched down the printed stitch line on the tag then trimmed out the hearts with an xacto blade - then I bent them up for dimension:
Here I used a little Pebbles, Inc, heart button to highlight the 14th:

Have you seen this? The Elle's Studio 'It's Love Story" kit. It's available now in the shop. I was lucky enough to get to work with one of these and it was so much fun. Once my projects go up on the Elle's blog I'll share them here. There were so many fun pieces of the kit, including those little handmade flowers (the colors are beautiful), the exclusive tags and that great exclusive doily stamp. 

Get it while you can :)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Elle's Studio Gallery

I'm really having a hard time believing my work is up in that gallery with those talented ladies. Have you seen this month's inspiration gallery at Elle's Studio? Wow, is all I have to say (and boy, do I feel lucky!) Thought I'd share my projects starting with this page:
I've scrapbooked this photo before but had to give the page away to my LSS for display. I needed to make one for me. A while back I mentioned I was liking the recent Close To My Heart offerings and ordered up a bunch of items - I put some of that to use for this project. I cut those numbers from one of the patterned papers. The little stars are canvas stickers. I popped them up with some dimensional adhesive. Here are some close ups:
The red chevron pattern is at the bottom of an Elle's Studio journal card (my favorite part about these tags are all the little details - they definitley add an extra layer of interest to a project)
Here's a part of the corner border at top left:

If you haven't already stopped by the Elle's Studio gallery you should. Such a great source of inspiration especially if you love Elle's tags like I do!

Another busy week on the way - will be back tomorrow with another project from the Elle's Gallery.
Have a great day!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Sunday At The Studio

A new challenge at The Studio this week and this was a fun one. Julie challenged us to make a page inspired by a letter (Sesame Street style - as in 'this page is brought to you by the letter 'insert letter'). I had a few ideas for this layout and had a hard time settling on just one. (I might have to make a few more!) Here's what I put together:
I used a lot of my Brooklyn Flea kit from Studio Calico with a few other items thrown in. The base paper is from the Classic Calico line, the thickers (American Crafts) are from the Handmade kit, also a few Elle's tags throw in for good measure. Here are the close ups:
Definitely feeling the circles lately! So, want to play along with this fun challenge? Link up over at The Studio after you check out great design team inspiration. You could win this month's prize!

Today I'm headed to the city with the little girl for our annual trip  to Lincoln Center for the ballet.
See you tomorrow with my Elle's gallery layouts.

Friday, January 20, 2012

In the spirit of sneak peeks...

Are you loving all the CHA sneaks? I have to admit, I haven't had a ton of web surfing time this week so I've got lots of catch up to do over the weekend. What's caught your eye? I'm anxious to check out the new Studio Calico (loving the stamps I've seen so far) and the new American Crafts & October Afternoon. I've been loving the new Pebbles, Inc. lines and can't wait to work with those. Have you seen the sneak peek of the new Elle's Studio kit? I've been lucky enough to get an advance copy and I'm in the process of using every single scrap. I haven't killed a kit in ages! Elle & Jenni did an amazing job putting this one together. Here's a sneak peek of "A Love Story."

In the spirit of sneak peeks and Elle's Studio...I've got a couple of my own...from my projects for the Elle's Studio Inspiration Gallery this month (my first official!) The background paper on this page is Studio Calico & those buttons are Pebbles, Inc.:
I know I mentioned a while back I had rediscovered Close To My Heart and picked up a few items from the Fall catalog - well, I finally got to use some of the items I picked up on this layout...those big numbers are cut from one of the papers:
Stay tuned to Elle's - the new gallery will go up on the 22nd. Can't wait to see what everyone made this month. I'm having such a great time working on this team!
Noteworthy this week - I started school last night and was happy to see a familiar face in class. So relieved I'm not the only 'grown up' although the youngsters seem pretty serious (or at least more serious than I was at that age). Got a huge box of happy from SRM stickers this week and can't wait until tomorrow to dive in. A storage solution recon mission to Ikea might be in order! This weekend is the 6th anniversary of my favorite LSS The Scrappers Cove. Happy Anniversary Sue, Chris & Pat - you are doing an amazing job!! I love those gals and will definitely be paying them a visit tomorrow. Ikea and the Scrappers Cove on the same day - it sounds like a perfect day!

Happy Friday all!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Some happy news today...

Happy to share today that I've been invited to join the SRM Stickers design team!

I've always loved SRM stickers but ever since I met Susan (owner of SRM) at CHA last summer, I knew I wanted to try out for this team. She's so cheerful and kind and very committed to her company & customers. I'm so excited to work with her this year. In honor of the big announcement day I whipped up this little Valentine's Day card - it's got a little of everything (Pebbles, Inc, Elle's Studio & SRM):
Here's the close up - the largest cloud is popped up with dimensional adhesive. I cut the word 'love' out of a few different sticker sentiments:
I'm extra happy that my pal Jan is also on the team - looking forward to sharing this fun year with her and the rest of the talented team members. You can see the full roster over at the SRM blog today - where there also happens to be a great giveaway going on - so stop on by and enter to win!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The First 12

...the first 12 photos I took for the Ella Publishing Take Twelve Photo Challenge. And it was hard. (I don't know how you Project Lifers do it!) I kept forgetting to take pictures so I had to fill in the next day (shhh, don't tell anyone). Next month I vow to be more prepared and mindful. So, here are my first 12 photos. Let me caution you that the 12th was Thursday - which was a pretty boring day in my world. Work, carpools and pouring rain.
....in the first first batch - typical breakfast of choice, carpooling (fyi: I took that photo after I dropped off the kids at school :), work...

...in the second batch - a perplexing sign on my side of the highway, refueling Jersey style (ie: stay in the car/do not touch gas pump), a quick stop at the pharmacy where Valentine's Day is in full effect & my little 'bucket filler' of the month!

...the third batch: calendar review, some happy mail (snail style), busy night dinner choice and an overdue library book.

Yesterday I was happy to see the crafty mojo return in time to wrap up my first official Elle's Studio projects for the month. Looking forward to sharing those with you later in the week. Elle's got some really fun stuff in store for next month. Can't wait to share that too.

Back tomorrow with some good crafty news (it's been a great month!).
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Pebbles, Inc Double Week

Are you noticing lots of summer themed pages on this blog? I guess because it's the dead of winter here in the US, I'm focused on one thing - getting to the Summer! Or at the very least, Spring!

This week was double page layout week over at Pebbles, Inc. I don't make them very often but when I do I feel so accomplished - like I've documented an entire story. For this page I used all of my favorite photos from an evening we spent at the beach last June. They have these free concerts on Wednesday nights and it's so nice just to sit there and have dinner and listen to some music...anyway, here's my page:
Here are a few close ups...I mixed a few different lines to make the border. I wanted to use wavy lines to connect the pages somehow, but didn't want to be too literal. I limited the waves and let them span the break in the pages. I trimmed that scallop-y Fresh Goods paper because I thought it looked nautical & wavy, too. For the most part, the colors in the border are pulled from the sand chair in one of the photos. Here's a title detail:
This little envelope, which you can only see the scalloped top of, holds all the extra little wallet sized photos that aren't on the page. The little clothespin helps to grab them...
I used a lot of Fresh Goods on this page, but also some Floral Lane and Happy Go Lucky. All of those Pebbles lines are so versatile. I can't wait to see what they have in store at CHA this month! For a full list of my supplies, and to see some more amazing double page layouts, stop by the blog today and keep an eye out for those Winter release sneaks!

I guess I can confess here that my first day of Ella's Take Twelve did not go as planned. I will re-organize and get my photos taken today & vow next month to take them all on the 12th!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Elle's Studio Sketch Thursday

My first official appearance on the Elle's Studio blog is today. Along with Kimberly I worked on this week's sketch challenge which is presented every Thursday by Waleska. (You can see the sketch based on one of Keshet's pages right here.) I made 2 pages - the first one - wasn't sure if I liked it...this is attempt #2:
My page is made mostly with materials from the Studio Calico Glee Club kit from a few months ago. I added the white cardstock, the Amy Tan washi tape & the October Afternoon Flower Sack shapes from another kit's add on. I turned the sketch to use a vertical photo but wound up using 3 small horizontals.

Here are my close ups. On this one you can see the blue striped border of the Winter Large Journaling Card I used and a small pennant from Handmade Layers Birthday set. Also, the white tag that the title is from Little Snippets:
Here I layered 2 smaller tags on top of that big journaling card mentioned above. I typed my journaling onto strips because I know me - writing in a wide open space like that was bound to be a great big mess:
I swore off butterflies a few months ago - and here's one now with a small date tag:
My favorite things about these tags is how they add the illusion of stitching & dimension without the bulk. You can check out the sketch and Kimberly's page on the Elle's Studio blog today.If you link up an inspired project you could win a gift certificate to shope Elle's!

fyi...Here are all the Elle's items I used on this page:

It's the 12th - are you taking your pictures for Ella's Take Twelve? It is pouring here so that means it will be the point & shoot for my January 12 photos. I'll share my dozen over the weekend.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Photo Shoot

I got it into my head on Sunday morning that I needed a new head shot. There's nothing more stressful to me than having my picture taken and since the DH is traveling, it was either going to be a tripod/remote operation, or my kids were going to have to assist. I didn't have the patiece to do the set up so I enlisted my 8 year old girl. Of course, once the girl is involved with the 'big camera' the little boy wants to participate too.  I remember my dad letting me use his big Nikon when I was very young and figured we couldn't do much harm. I used them as models to set the settings then handed over the camera. The lighting on Sunday was perfect, it was a pretty good hair day (lol) so the results were surprisingly good....here are my two faves, as shot by Marilyn & Christopher:

I probably should photoshop out all the background junk but not bad for grade schoolers!

Two more days until the 12th and I'm getting ready to start the Ella Publishing Take Twelve Photo Challenge. Also, if you haven't seen, the new Ella Publishing Friends have been announced. It sure was a great year working with Angie & Wendy - those gals are in for a great time.

Back later this week with a page I made for the Elle's Studio sketch challenge and a double I made for Pebbles, Inc. Hope you are having a great week!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Sunday At The Studio

scroll to the next post to see the winner of the Ella Publishing Take 12 Challenge Giveaway...
Last week - it was a long week but it was a really good week - chock full of potential for the new year. It was the week Christmas got put away and everyone went back to school and work - after school activities started up again.  I'm even going back to school; in 2 weeks I'll start a digital drawing certificate program at a local college. When I was in college, way back in the early 90s, we didn't use computers to draw. We drew by hand with tools that now look like antiques to me. Since then AutoCad and other digital graphics programs have become essential for interior designers.  My self-taught AutoCad skills are pretty lame so it's high time I get back in a classroom and learn it once and for all. So here I go. I get to learn a bunch of cool 3d stuff & graphics programs, too - so I'm excited.

Today I've got my page for this week's challenge at The Studio. Julie asked us to make a page with 5 photos or more. Not a problem when you print em' small! I made this page that will start the fall/Halloween section of my album:
materials: cardstock: Bazzill; patterned paper: MME; stickers: Echo Park

It never fails - when I leave something to the last minute and have to get it done fast the crafty mojo is nowhere to be found. Such was the case yesterday morning. When that happens, I'll go back to my completed albums and use one of my more successful projects as a sketch.  How about you - what do you do when this happens?

The Studio Challenges design team did not seem to have this problem and you can check out their inspiring work right here. Link up your project and you could win this months prize!

Winner, Winner!

Today I get to annouce the winner of my Ella Publishing Take 12 Photo Challenge giveaway - just a few more days before we start. I'm very excited for this project and haven't decided what camera I'm going to use, as the 12th this month is a Thursday - a really busy working Thursday. Have a feeling it will be the point & shoot or the iPhone - we'll see...so here's my winner:
Congratulations commenter #4!
OpenID 5littlechickens said...
Never taken a photo challenge, but this looks like a fun one! I love the 12th idea!

Send me an email at valfm66@yahoo.com and I'll send you the download info!
Thanks everyone for playing along!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Still time to win...

I've decided to keep the Take Twelve Photo Challenge giveaway open until Saturday night. Will pick the lucky winner on Sunday morning so please stop back then to see if you've won!
Just to get you in the mood - Angie Lucas has a great post up on the Ella Publishing blog to get you motivated & ready for the 12th.
To be entered to win,
comment on yesterdays post!
Good luck!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Ella's Take Twelve Giveaway!

Today I've got something fun! My friends at Ella Publishing asked if I wouldn't mind helping them give away one of these:

...it's the Take Twelve Guided Inspiration Kit!
Inspiring ideas, shortcuts, and printables for the 2012 Take Twelve Project.

Here's a little sampling of what's included with the project kit:
The goal of the 2012 Take Twelve Project is to take 12 photos on the 12th day of each month for a full 12 months—and scrapbook them! You can join in the fun any month of the year, but we hope you'll join in starting January 12. Get the scoop at ellapublishing.com/taketwelve.

Here's one of the page sketches by Donna Jannuzzi:

Love the concept for this mini - me, I haven't decided if I'm going to do a mini or full sized book yet....

Learn more about the history of the Take Twelve project and see the FAQ section.

So, the challenge today - if you choose to accept it - is to leave a comment here telling me what other photo challenges you have participated in, if any, for a chance to win this fantastic prize. I'll draw a random winner on Friday morning so be sure to comment by midnight. You'll have plenty of time to get your camera ready for the 12th!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Mix & Match at Pebbles, Inc.

This week at Pebbles, Inc. I got to participate in 'Mix & Match Monday' on the blog; combine several lines to make a project. I hit my stash of scrap and made these cards:
The lines combined are New Addition 2011 (for the blue base), Fresh Goods, Floral Lane and a little Welcome Christmas, too...

You can find a complete list of my supplies on the blog. Next week I'll have a 2-page layout on the Pebbles, Inc. blog. I haven't made a 2 page layout since last winter. It feels so strange to have that much space and that many photos. Will share that next week.

Yesterday I nearly finished my December Daily. I've got one empty page with no photo and no idea what happened so I'll have to get creative. Otherwise, all there is to do is Dec. 25 then it's officialy complete. Considering I've never finished a DD before the following summer, I'm feeling pretty accomplished. I also took down all the Christmas decorations and put them away yesterday. It was a very productive day.

Now, back to the routine....hope you all have a great day!