Friday, January 30, 2015

The DigiScrap Geek Podcast: Talking about ScrapCon and Bundt Cake

Earlier this week, I had a chance to sit down with the panel of the DigiScrap Geek Podcast and Kami Leonard to learn all about ScrapCon. In March, memory keepers will be headed over to Sandy, Utah to partake in a huge scrapbooking convention. All I can say is that it sounds like a lot of fun. Evidently, Utah is also known for it's delicious desserts. And yes, they have an awsome bundt cake. Have a listen to the show to see whether or not attending ScrapCon might be for you. There are options to scrap live at the event  for digi scrappers, hybrid scrappers and paper scrappers. It would seem this is a great way to meet people who love memory keeping and get some great pages done.

ScrapCon will run March 27 and 28th. For more information, visit the ScrapCon website.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The DigiScrap Geek Podcast: Episode 18- Sharing about Yourself

When I scrapbook, my favorite subjects are my husband, son and our pets. I do put a lot of myself into the design of the pages as well as the storytelling. It's not often though that there is a photo of me or a story specifically about me. Last year, I began following Kristin Tweedale's blog. My goal was to learn how to better include me in my pages. When you haven't been the sole focus of your layouts, switching gears can be difficult. We discuss what hangs us up and what we can do to change the way we document ourselves in the latest episode of the DigiScrap Geek Podcast.

After recording the episode, I thought I would take a look back through my pages to find layouts that include me in photos or tell stories about me. It's not as many as I would have liked, but I still wanted to share them with you.

This was one of the few times I handed the camera over to my husband. I had the amazing opportunity to participate in a Sea Turtle release. The journaling is mostly about my son and the opportunity itself. You can find the original blog post about this layout here.

This was a hard layout for me to make. It is based on a prompt from Get It Scrapped to journal as though you heard some news and are discussing it with someone. I chose to write to my grandfather to tell him how I felt about his passing and what impact his life had on mine. The original post can be found here.

I created this layout for the Scraphappy Layout a Day Competition in October of 2013. I find that many of the photos that feature me in them also feature my husband...which is a wonderful thing.This layout tells the tale of how neither of us ever went to prom. My husband's current job sometimes involves us having to attend black tie affairs. We often joke about how it feels like he is taking me out to a formal dance.

After seeing someone post the idea of creating a current self portrait by using objects from the person's life, I decided to try it out. I staged this photo which include my tablet, a camera, scrapbooking tools, cat toys, and a video game controller. All of these objects reflect various parts of my life at that current time. You can see the original article here.

This is a photo of me with my best friend. Yet again another rare moment in which someone else had the camera. I guess I need to let go of the camera more often. You can see the original blog post about this layout here.

There are a few more layouts which feature me in them. I would like to see more. This year, my goal is to become comfortable participating in the #thursday3 challenge. I also have a goal to art journal more. Since I do better when I am accountable, I will be joining the Awesome Ladies Project. How about you? Is there enough stories and photos with you in them? Or would you like to see more of yourself in your albums?

Additional Resources

You can join the Awesome Ladies Project here. It's completely free and lots of fun.

I missed being there to record Episode 17 with Anna Aspnes. I have plans to listen this weekend. Have you heard it? If not, pop on over to listen.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Scrapbook Challenges: SnapShots

You're in luck. Two posts in one day. Earlier today, I mentioned that I like to have some sketches in mind to help me out during Layout a Day. It just so happens that I also have a resource for sketches I can share with you. Every week, Scrapbook challenges shares a new sketch. They also have an archive of past sketches that you can reference.

I am a bit biased, but I do love their sketches. Today, another new sketch released. Sketch #425 challenged me just a bit. It took a little bit of arranging and rearranging of the elements to get it just the way I wanted it.

Snap Shots by Christy Strickler |Supplies Patterned Paper: My Mind's Eye, Crate Paper, October Afternoon; Stickers: Treasured Memories; Wood Veneer: Crate Paper, Studio Calico; Flair:Studio Calico; Die Cuts: Silhouette; Punch: Martha Stewart; Scrapbook Challenges Sketch #425

For added texture, I machine stitched the chevron background paper. I opted to go with pinked circles instead of the hexagons in the sketch. This decision was based on the wood veneer that says "dude" on it. I wanted all of the shapes to be cohesive. Machine stitching ( or even hand stitching) on the pinked circles would have been possible but time consuming. Using a black pen saved time while it also helped the shape feel more finished.

Though this page challenged me a bit, I do adore the way it turned out. I was able to take on two challenges at once. I finished a sketch challenge while also using my silhouette and punches. Two more challenges in the books and another layout for my album.It's a win-win scenario.

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LOAD 215 Blog Hop

It's almost time for the next Layout a Day challenge. I am excited to join friends both old and new as we embark on a month long commitment to make a scrapbook page a day. For those who haven't tried the challenge before, it can seem a bit daunting. I hear conversations fraught with worry  about whether or not they are fast enough to make a page a day. Now that I have a few LOAD challenges under my belt I can say with conviction that you just need to relax. It's not as hard as you think. I wish someone had told me that during my first LOAD challenge.

Relaxing is a bit hard when you feel pressure to complete something in a set time frame. My first few LOAD challenges were full of me scrapping hard and fast, hands shaking, trying to finish my layout by midnight. I am a stay at home mom but my day isn't empty. I homeschool my son, clean my home and fix meals for my family throughout the day. I had to learn how to allocate a little time to work on my LOAD challenge each day. For everyone, this is different. It took a few prompts to find my groove. I like to look at the prompt, take a bit of time to think about my approach, then set to making the layout. On some days, this means I don't start working until sometime after 8 pm. Long story short, you might have a few days of shaking hands. Once again relax, and think about what worked for you and what didn't. Can you work in the morning for an hour or will you have time at night?

Share that you are doing LOAD. The first time your spouse or child might look at you cross eyed with confusion. They may not get why it's important to you, but at least they will understand what you are doing. You might even find you get a few extra helping hands around the house so that you can allocate a little extra time to the challenge.

Prep or don't. Preparing for LOAD is a personal thing. Once again, you need to find what works for you. I do shuffle through my photos, trying to anticipate which ones will work or not. I do have some kits set aside along with a collection of go to sketches. It doesn't mean I will use them. I let the prompt take me where it will. I have learned that, for me, keeping preparation to a minimum is fine. I want to be able to adapt to prompts on the fly.

You can save time with confident choices. Many days, you will not have the time to shuffle through 45 sheets of paper to find just the right one. Look at the prompt, pull the first photo you think will work, and then go to your supplies. The first embellishment or paper you pull that catches your fancy are the right ones. In memory keeping, there are no wrong choices, just options. During LOAD, you need to keep those options to a minimum.

Have fun. If you don't make the deadline, so what. The earth will not blow up. Your house will not self destruct. What will happen is that you will learn a little about yourself. You will make some new friends. You will keep on creating and in the end, you might just be crazy enough to sign up for LOAD next year. 

Additional Resources

Considering signing up for LOAD215? 
Click here to view more details

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Get It Scrapped- Flat Geometrics

This was by far one of the most difficult challenges I had taken on in awhile. Flat geometry is fascinating. Converting it to a scrapbook layout took a little thinking. I spent a lot of time over at the Get It Scrapped Flat Geometry Pinterest board searching for a way to translate the concept to my personal layouts. In some cases, one can find stamps or even printed patterned paper featuring these flat geometric designs. Those would have been an easy answer but really they didn't provide me with what I really wanted.

Photos With Elephants by Christy Strickler |Supplies Patterned Paper: Studio Calico; Tape: Amy Tangerine, My Mind’s Eye, Bella Blvd.; Tag: Fancy Pants; Wood Veneer: PinkFresh Studio, Studio Calico, Jillibean Soup; Sequins, Stickers: Studio Calico; Die Cut: Chic Tags; Ink: Tsukienko, Ranger; Stamps: Studio Calico, PinkFresh Studio; Other: Tape, Doily; appears in an article for Get It Scrapped

I realized that I was drawn to many of the geometric animals and landscapes. Recreating these would not be easy, but could be accomplished through paper piecing.I chose a simple color for the background. The paper already had a subtle geometric design. I started by composing the landscape, which was the simplest part of the layout. I used rectangular pieces of green washi tape. Notice how I am using the color tones. Each part of the design is composed on one color and uses multiple tones of that color. The same idea helped me compose the elephant. I used circle punches and multiple shades of blue patterned paper. Plain paper could definitely be used, but I really like the subtle texture that printed patterned paper offers. The plants are essentially half of a star stamp. The tree is composed of half circles and thin washi tape.

When it came to embellishing, I took a little bit of creative license. I noticed that many flat geometric prints feature a blend of real animals or designs mixed with the geometric elements. The embellishments around the photo reflect this. I stamped the title using a geometric print. I felt I needed something angular to match the landscape.

Overall, this was a challenging layout, but as always, I love the result. I am not sure I will be repeating a bold geometric design in the future. I can say that I love the whimsical feel it adds to these zoo photos of my son. It matches the story but has allowed me to create something different from my typical zoo themed page.

Additional Resources

The Get It Scrapped Membership
Click here to view more details

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Scrapbook Challenges: In the Window

It was just a few days ago that I announced becoming a member of the SBC Sketch Crew. As promised, the first sketch of the year is now available. It's time to get crafty! You might recall that I mentioned collecting challenges. I kept that in mind as I worked on this next layout. I made a promise to use my Silhouette and die cutting tools more this month over in the Get It Scrapped forum. Effectively, I combined two challenges into one layout.

In the Window by Christy Strickler |Supplies Patterned Paper: Studio Calico; Letters; Sassafrass, Twine and Ink; Die Cuts: Basic Grey, Silhouette; Wood: Jillibean Soup; Acrylic: Maggie Holmes; Stickers: SEI; Based on Sketch # 424 from Scrapbook Challenges

I seem to be going through a cat phase and feeling the need to print and document my pets. This is Momo in his favorite spot in our home. It just so happened that Silhouette released a set of cat in the window cut files recently. It was purrfect. I am also pleased with myself for mixing in some older supplies with new. The yellow letters are from an older sheet of Sassafrass( a company I miss) and I also managed to use a partial doily scrap.

Are you collecting challenges this year too? You have plenty of time to play along. The Scrapbook Challenges sketch submissions are not due until February 28th. You can share layouts with die cuts for the rest of the month over at the Get It Scrapped Forum. I hope you will all join me in the quest to collect and use challenges in 2015!

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