Sunday, July 26, 2015

8 Collections I Want from the CHA 2015 Paper Arts Show

Coverage of the CHA's Summer Paper Arts show was no where near as extensive as it was for the show last January. As a member of CHA, I was able to watch a few demonstrations from the floor through a live feed. However, given time constraints and other issues, I didn't catch nearly as much as I had hoped to. I searched through a few manufacturer blogs and was happy to see some new items.There are some exciting new supplies but I will admit that I was a bit disappointed in not being able to find as many products as usual. The most comprehensive website I have found with links to many of the new releases is at the Scrappy Jedi's blog. Despite the difficulty of finding information about the new releases, I managed to find a few items to add to my wishlist.

**update** Scrapbook Update also has a comprehensive list of new Summer Releases highlighted at the CHA show.

Ready for a little enabling( and a few affiliate links when possible)?

Crate Paper Wonder

I want the whole line!It includes a nice blend of the eclectic styles of papers that I like. The motifs are general enough for a varity of layouts( also it has cute cats). You can preview the collection on Crate Paper's Website. It's also available for pre-order at a variety of retailer's including

Ken Oliver Crafts Colorburst

To be fair, this item was also shown during the show in January. After seeing another live demo of the product, I decided I just might need to have the whole collection of colors. You can see a demo of Colorburst from Ken on his website. Ken is a wonderful paper artist to follow. He is creative and very friendly. I got to speak with him earlier in the year when he visited a Get It Scrapped Live crop. I recommend following his blog for craft inspiration.

My Christmas Paper Picks

I think I am ready to donate a lot of older Christmas supplies in favor of getting some new ones after seeing the latest releases from Carta Bella and Basic Grey. Both Carta Bella Christmas Wonderland and Basic Grey's Juniper Berry offer a lovely mix of vintage with a fresh new feel.

My Fall Supply Picks

I am always a sucker for Fall themed and Halloween themed kits. Maybe it's because I have never lived in a place with a true fall. Even so, it is still my favorite time of year. For Halloween, I once again find myself drawn to Carta Bella for their new Halloween line. The nice thing about most fall kits is that you can mix and match supplies between them to create your own mega kit. I hope to choose between Carta Bella's Fall Blessings line and Simple Stories Pumpkin Spice.

My Project Life Picks

I am counting this as one pick but really, it encompasses many products. I have a minor hoarding problem when is comes to Project Life and pocket cards. The new releases shown on the Becky Higgins website have done nothing to curb my desire to get more kits. I want all of the new releases!

Silhouette's New Machines

This next pick is more of a bonus pick rather than a collection.Did you hear me mention the new machine from Silhouette on the Digiscrap geek Podcast? Both are on my wishlist and will be available this fall. The new Curio offers the option to emboss and etch as well as to cut. The new options make this machine a huge consideration when it comes to the possibility of upgrading from my portrait. Though, I might just wait a bit to see if these options will be offered in a new smaller machine.

 The Mint will offer the option to create your own stamps. I might wait for a review of this prior to purchasing as I wasn't too impressed with the stamp quality from their Stamp to Cut material kit. However, the option to create my own stamps always intrigues me.

Both are currently available for pre-order from Amazon.

As with past wishlists, I most likely won't be able to get everything on it. However, creating a wishlist does make it a bit easier to help me budget for supplies in the coming months.

What new items have you seen to add to your wishlist? Did I miss anything cool that caught your eye?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Are you excited about the CHA 2015 PAPER ARTS+ SHOW 2015?

Right now, my friend and fellow DigiScrapGeek Podcast co-host, Karen Poirier-Brode is at the Paper Arts show. I admit that I am a bit jealous and wish I was there on the floor. I joined CHA along with my co-hosts a few months ago and were it not a matter of distance, you can believe I would have loved to go.  I have had a peek at the industry trend report and have a few thoughts on that which I may share later on( possibly on an upcoming episode of the DSG Podcast).

Sitting here right now, I am wondering how tempted I will be by the new supplies. I think that many of us( me included) get caught up in the excitement of new things. I often lament that I want to buy it all. If you want to hone in on the key things from your wishlist, check out this article I wrote about How to Navigate Cha Temptation on a Budget.

I have been pretty good with my craft spending this year. I have stuck to using my kits to control my budget. I currently subscribe to Cocoa Daisy( Scrapbook Main and the Project Life Kit) and to Pinkfresh Studio. Cocoa Daisy has continued to deliver a nice mix of new supplies( Stamps, various manufacturers and a great embellishment selection) which has kept me satisfied. They also recently introduced the concept of a la carte add ons. Rather than buying full kit add ons, you can buy only the individual items you want. It's much more budget friendly for me. Pinkfresh Studios offers me a nice selection of embellishments, a new stamp and a new die every month. It also keeps me from feeling I need more. Otherwise, I have only gotten a few items from this year's CHA wish list separately. Definitely smarter spending and it's keeping my small creative space from overflowing.

What exactly did I get from my January 2015 CHA wishlist? Not everything. Once the glamour of "new and exiting" wore off, I kept to just a few things. Ready for a little enabling( and a few affiliate links)?

I purchased the Fuse Tool from We R Memory Keepers. After reading a bit about it  and asking Karen who saw it demonstrated at CHA), I added the Precision Glass Mat to my purchase. The mat helps to protect your work surface and also enable the Fuse Tool to work optimally.

A few sheets and some die cuts from the Basic Grey Prism Collection made it's way into my supplies. Mostly, these came from my Cocoa Daisy kits. After using up those kits, I realize that I love this line so much I may just end up buying the whole collection. I still want to get all of Pink Paislee's Atlas line as well, though I haven't gotten around to it.

It remains to be seen whether or not I will find anything interesting at the Summer Paper Arts Show. If I do then I'll be sure to share my favorites. What I do know is this...I have a tendency to choose the same motifs and materials over and over again. Take a look at your own wishlist to see if this is true. Then, take a look at your own supplies to see if you already have similar items. Chances are that you might not need that shiny new whatever. Once you realize that, you can make smarter buying choices and narrow down your wish list.

When I do purchase, I continue to shop mostly at  Paper Issues, Amazon and Otherwise, I am sticking to my kit club subscriptions as the main source for my supplies. If you are not sure whether a kit club is for you, check out this article. It may help you decide.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Let's go Big! Scrapbooking with 5x7 and Larger Photos

Earlier this year, 4 x 6 photos were my go to size for scrapbooking. Yet once again, I find myself reaching for a larger print. Sometimes 8.5 x 11 is just too big. That's when 5 x 7 becomes the star of the show.

The Grim Reaper by Christy Strickler |Supplies Patterned Paper, Stickers, Die Cuts: October Afternoon; Flair: Panda Eight Designs; Jewel: Glitz Designs; Tape: 7 Gypsies; Enamel Dots: My Mind's Eye; Based on Scrapbook Challenges Sketch # 446 

Ready to scrap big but need some more inspiration? Try one of these resources:

3. Photo Backgrounds and Foundations ( from the Get It Scrapped Blog)

Follow My Scrapbook Evolution's board Big Photos! on Pinterest.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Quick and Easy Home Decor with Deflecto Craft Solutions

I have been on a bit of a kick lately. I have the desire to spruce up my home a bit. However, I am on a budget regarding both time and money. I needed a quick project that wouldn't break the bank. I grabbed a few of my Deflecto Frames and some scrapbook supplies and went right to work.

To be fair, I must confess that I am using supplies received in my capacity as a Deflecto Ambassador. I had a wonderful opportunity to work with several paper collections from PaperWishes. You could easily replicate the results with any scrapbook paper collection that you would like to use. 

The key to making the decorative frames quickly is to keep your design simple. Choose a frame in a standard size such as 4x6 or 5x7. Most frames come with a paper insert. If the  frame is not a standard size, use that insert as a template.Lay the insert over your chosen piece of background paper and trace, then cut it down to size. Using the insert means there is no need to measure.

This particular frame was featured with full instructions on the Paper Wishes site. You can view them here.

I also wanted to keep the second frame simple. I chose to use my silhouette to create a series of heart die cuts. These were all cut from the same piece of paper. Since this paper is double sided and coordinates, I merely had to choose one to flip over. I did add a tiny bit of glue to the back side of the hearts to keep them from shifting in the frame.

Quick Tip: The advantage of working with this style of clear acrylic frame is that you  can lay it over the top of a cutting mat. It is then easy to use the grid as a guide when placing the die cuts.

Quick projects like these frames make it easy to refresh your home decor without breaking the bank or taking up a lot of time. You can make a few in an hour or less. Keep them on hand and switch them out to match your mood or the seasons.

This posts contains affiliate links when possible. Please shop your stash first, but should you find you need something, consider supporting MSE.

Visit Deflecto to find a retailer near you or purchase supplies through Amazon.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Catching Up: Project Life 2015 and the DigiScrap Geek Podcast Episode 38

It has been my goal to share relevant thoughts and inspiration to go along with each episode of the DigiScrap Geek Podcast. I was doing quite well with this up until a few weeks ago when I rebranded my website. Changing things around on MSE took all of my full attention. I changed to a new template, had to learn a few new things and then learn to fix the mistakes I made along the way. It wasn't necessarily hard but it was time consuming. I still find myself tweaking things but well, I digress...

Back to the topic! We have continued to record the DigiScrap Geek Podcast and I have continued to write down ideas to expound upon regarding the subjects we cover. Today's post has to do with a request from our latest episode. The topic of Project Life came up. I love Project Life but as with anything I do, I have found I needed to organize it my way in order for me to make it a doable project. I have talked before about how I do a monthly page spread mixed in with 12 x 12 Scrapbook layouts. Talking about something is one thing. Showing is another. I decided to make a video sharing a walk through of my 2015 Scrapbook Album to date.

In the video, I talk a little about how my method is saving me space. I know it might not seem like that when you see all of those cat layouts. However, using this method has cut down the number of albums I have each year. Prior to this, it would take 4-6 albums to document a year of photos. I now have about 2-3 albums for one year. Still a lot, I guess, but for me a much better option.

I still have more insights to share from other episodes of the DigiScrap Geek Podcast. Summer seems to be the perfect time for me to catch up on blog posts( even get ahead in my blogging) and catch up on listening to my favorite podcasts. So stay tuned for more articles from yours truly. Same Bat Time. Same Bat Channel. Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy a wonderful weekend with your family with a little create time for yourself.

This posts contains affiliate links when possible. Please shop your stash first, but should you find you need something, consider supporting MSE.

365Unscripted: 3x4 Collage Cards 2 by Traci Reed

365Unscripted 4x6 Collage Cards by Traci Reed

Currently List Cards and other products can be found in the online shop.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

I am so Excited to Join the Team at Be Photo Wise!

I have been teasing you about a big announcement for weeks and the big day is finally here. I am honored to become a member of the Be Photo Wise Team. The newly designed website is a go to resource for organizing your photos. Yes, we're all about backing up your pictures but there is so much more! Be Photo Wise is also a platform for memory keeping education. I am thrilled that I will be able to offer my classes online once again!

At this point, my goal is to have classes up and running sometime early this Fall. Meanwhile, if you are looking for something interesting to explore, Be Photo Wise has a selection of classes ready to go.(two of the classes are FREE!)

There is also a chance to win an All Access Class Pass. For details, visit the Be Photo Wise Home page!

While you are on the Be Photo Wise website, you might want to check out the blog. The archives have some wonderful photo preservation resources. I also happen to have a blog post on there too. I shared a story about My Love Affair With Photos. I am happy to say I will be regularly contributing to the blog. Did you notice a familiar face? My fellow DigiScrap Geek Podcast Host, Carrie Arick will be joining the team as well.

I am so excited to be sharing new classes with all of you again. I hope to see you over at Be Photo Wise!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Summer Inspiration is on the Rise in July!

Are you a productive scrapbooker during the summer? In the islands the temperatures and the humidity are on the rise which means that I find that the cool shade of my creative space is ever so appealing. I tend to create as much, if not more than other seasons. Some might feel a twinge of guilt at the thought of not having time to create layouts. It's time to let that go.  The question of whether or not we are productive as memory keepers during the summer has varied answers which have a lot to do with what we regard as productive.

Producing lots of layouts is a form of productivity while many people see time spent with family as a time to relax. It is very relaxing, especially if you get to travel or do something out of the ordinary. I would venture to say that this time can also be seen as its own form of productivity. Time spent with family without the hindrance of chores is an investment.You are simultaneously practicing self care, providing quality time with your loved ones and building a bank of memories. All of which will make you a better memory keeper when you do have time to sit down and scrapbook.

Whether or not you are creating a lot of pages right now or just a few, there is always a bit of time to take a peek at some inspiration. Let's get to it!

Thomas the Tank Engine Rolling Along by Christy Strickler |Supplies Patterned Paper, Letters, Die Cuts: We R Memory Keepers; Buttons: American Crafts, Jillibean Soup; Enamel Dots: My Mind's Eye;Inspired by a Sketch and Story Starter from Simple Scrapper Premium Membership

My layouts for Simple Scrapper this month are not really summer themed. Rather, they take a look back at my son and his relationship with his toys over the years.Thomas the Tank Engine was a large part of his life when he was a toddler. I didn't have any train related supplies. Instead, I chose to go with print of a cityscape. After all, he was imagining little cities and towns as he built the train tracks across the floor.

He Likes to Take Toys on the Go by Christy Strickler |Supplies Carstock: Bazzill; Patterned Paper, Die Cuts, Wood Veneer: Crate Paper; Letters: American Crafts, Basic Grey; Stickers: October Afternoon;Inspired by a Sketch and Story Starter from Simple Scrapper Premium Membership

I used a photo of my son in the past to compare how he is today. When my son was small, he couldn't go anywhere without at least one toy. Over time, this need to have a toy with him faded. I could have used a photo of him now to document the change, but I feel as though a photo of the past is much more poignant.

Just because it is summer doesn't mean you necessarily have to document summer memories( unless they are really inspiring you right now). Keep things simple by scrapbooking what inspires you at this moment right now. Don't waste precious creative time trying to decided on supplies or photos. 

Summer can also be a great time to catch up with your reading or podcasts. If you haven't been around My Scrapbook Evolution during June, you can get a quick recap on the top articles and blog posts as well as this month's shows from the DigiScrap Geek Podcast.

There is a big announcement coming up! So stay tuned to MSE because Summer Inspiration is on the Rise!

This post contains affiliate links when possible. Thank you for supporting MSE!

Is your stash a mess? Whether it is digital or physical product, you can always benefit by taking stock of what you have. Join in the Stash Bash Challenge this month at Simple Scrapper to get your self organized and using more of what you already own.