And This Happened | A Scrapbook Layout

by Tammy on April 22, 2014

One of the things I wasn’t able to do when I was unemployed was to buy new clothes, new shoes, new handbags. Three of my favorite things!

So now that I’m gainfully employed again and catching up, it has been necessary to update my wardrobe. New shoes have been a bit of an addiction lately. Shoes for work. Flip flops. Wedges. This adventure was definitely scrap-worthy.

I had so much fun creating this layout! There are tons of little details.

All of the papers and some of the embellishments came in my April Scraptastic kit (I am still LOVING these kits!).  I used the Sawdust cardstock and Fancy Pants As You Wish Dictionary papers as the background layers. To emphasize each photo I cut the Fancy Pants As You Wish This & That paper into mini strips. I cut one oblong rectangle away from each strip to help frame the photo and then attached one triangle stud from Maggie Holmes Syleboard collection.

I used lots of pieces from the Fancy Pants As You Wish ephemera pack as well as some My Mind’s Eye stickers from my stash. The subtitle ampersand also came in that ephemera pack and the “this happened” flair is from Two Peas. I used a Fancy Pants bag from the Etcetera collection as a place to hold my journaling. The tag comes from American Crafts new DIY collection and I also used some American Crafts chalk markers on that tag. I really love these chalk markers! The ink is very opaque and smooth.

For the finishing details, I added some Icicle stickles to the Thickers in the title and splattered some black and gold paint. (I didn’t use mists, I used plain old acrylic craft paints mixed with a little water. I much prefer the thicker texture of the paint for splatters like this.)

I’m really happy with how this one turned out. I’ve been having lots of mojo issues lately, but this fun layout helped get me back on the road to creating again.

Thanks for stopping by today!



Quick Tip | Mini Blending Tool

by Tammy on April 18, 2014

Today I wanted to share a quick tip.

Tim Holtz recently released his Ink Blending Tool in a new size. It’s smaller with a round end. I watched a couple of videos that Jennifer McGuire recently shared (one here with her review of why she loves this size and another tutorial showing the mini blending tool in action).

I have to admit, she totally sucked me in. After watching these videos, I wanted a set of these mini blending tools because the smaller round size is awesome.

The only problem? I’m not really interested in buying new tools. I only have 6 tools now. I never saw a need to have more than that. I have enough foam refills for all of the distress colors I own and just change the foam out for whatever color I need. Now I have to buy new tools to get the smaller size?


My Hobby Lobby had a package of the mini foam refills and as I stood there in the store, I wondered…why wouldn’t they just work on the tools I already have?

And YES! It totally works.

I am not bothered in the least that the tool I have is rectangular and these new foam pieces are circles. Because the foam adheres to the tool via the Velcro, it does not matter what size the foam piece is.  You still get the benefits of the smaller round size even when you adhere it to the larger block.

I also thought I would share with you how I store ink blending tools and my foam pieces.

I keep the foam refills in small plastic bags labeled with the color name.

The bag is large enough so that I can just add and store the new small round foam piece in the same bag!

I can keep everything together in one small bin!

So trust me, just buy a package of the round refills and add them to the tool you already have. But if you don’t have any Ink Blending Tools, go ahead and get the smaller ones. The smaller size is more versatile than the original size. And the new ones come in a package of two so you only need to buy one or two sets.

Thanks for stopping by today!


Use Your Stash | Gelatos

by Tammy on April 15, 2014

It has been such a long time since I’ve done a Use Your Stash post. It’s definitely time for a new one! I recently created a layout background using gelatos and thought this would be the perfect subject. While there’s been a lot of buzz about them and designers are using them more and more, many crafters are still wary.

Gelatos are pigmented color sticks with a soft texture. They come in a tube like chapstick and the consistency is harder than lipstick but softer than a crayon. You can use them like crayons to apply color to a surface. You can also mix them with water and use them like water colors. They are so much fun to use!

For my use your stash posts, I like to go in search of other layouts and inspiration to show additional examples and ways other crafters have been using the item. Check at the end of this post for additional video resources.

Here are some great ways to use your gelatos:

1. Create Backgrounds

For my layout, I wanted to create a colorful background to showcase some spring flower photos. I just took each gelato and colored in a section of the background. Once the color was down, I took a paint brush with water to spread out the color a bit. And by adding water and forming puddles, I applied my heat tool and pushed the water drops to create the cool drips.

I worked with one section at at time. Applying the color, the water with the brush, and drying with the heat tool before applying the next color.

The finished layout is super colorful. I love the saturated color the gelatos lend to the background. As much as I love pattern paper, it’s fun to create custom backgrounds like this for special layouts.

2. Make Embellishments

I love, love this idea from Wilna. Over on 2 Peas, she shared this layout using gelatos to create her own super sized enamel dots.

Source: Two Peas In A Bucket Check out Wilna’s video!

3. Painting with Gelatos and mixing them with other Mediums

In this project over at the Simon Says Stamp blog, Shari Carroll watered down her gelao colors to color in the message on the front of the card. Then she added one color to Faber Castell Glaze to get a really cool effect on the inside flap.

Source: Simon Says Stamp blog Check out Shari’s video!

4. Adding Color to Pattern Paper

Ever have a piece of pattern paper and you want to add a pop of color? I love this idea from Mou over at the Design Memory Craft blog. She added some gelato color to a pattern paper background with a wet brush over gesso to get a cool wash of color.

Source: Design Memory Craft blog

5. Mixing Mist colors

Who doesn’t love a tool that can perform double duties? Mieko shared this cool idea on the Design Memory Craft blog. She took the silver metallic gelato and mixed it with water and added it to a Mini-Mister to create her own mist color.

Source: Design Memory Craft blog

6. Coloring Embossed Backgrounds

Last, I have shared this idea in a previous post, but wanted to revisit the topic. Gelatos are perfect for adding color to the raised background created by embossing folders.

I love how the white looks on the kraft paper. And the lighter colors (especially the metallics) show up great on black paper.

In addition, I always find videos to be helpful when trying something new. The links below are all freely available videos showing a variety of gelato techniques.

  • Designing with Gelatos – Design Memory Craft – a fantastic video showing a variety of different gelato techniques along with this gelato set
  • Designing with Gelatos – with Limor Webber – an hour long class showing even more techniques. She shares a lot of information as she works on the different surfaces.
  • Drip Techniques with Gelatos – with Donna Downey – Donna showcases why a surface painted with gesso provides the perfect backdrop for a dripping gesso technique
  • And last, two more videos from Wilna showing more ways to use gelatos on scrapbooking layouts. This one is for Studio Calico and she shows a fun technique combining glaze and gesso with the gelato colors. And then this one is for Two Peas where Wilna uses bright gelato colors on a black chalkboard background.

I hope that these ideas help you get your gelatos off the shelf and onto some new projects!

Thanks for stopping by today!


Love Your Style | A Scrapbook Layout

by Tammy on April 8, 2014

Well, so much for getting this layout posted last week… Just didn’t happen. But on the brighter side, I purposely didn’t plan anything for this past weekend — no dinner with friends, no dates, no drinks, and guess what? I was super productive! Amazing how that works. Not only did I finish the two layouts on my desk in progress, but I also got started on several more and brainstormed some future ideas.

While I am super happy with how my social life is shaping up these days…I still really need my down time too. I’m going to have to remember to give myself a weekend with no commitments every once in awhile. But I digress…on to the layout!

I finished another center layered layout and just thought I would snap a few photos in process to show how it comes together. Sometimes its hard to tell how many layers are there and how they all stack up. I know when I see some pages on Pinterest I really want to know, so I thought I would just share this one in case anyone else wonders like I do.

This base started out with thin pattern paper strips across the top and the bottom. I find that these strips help keep the focus and attention on the center of the page. Your eye isn’t as likely to go off the page with borders helping to contain the space.

Two blocks form the center foundation and the photo is added right away. All of the other layers will be tucked in around the photo.

3×4 journaling cards. These little cards are showing up on more of my layouts these days. I guess in a way, they have replaced other blocks of pattern paper. I have found that I don’t use as much pattern paper when I have fun cards to layer with. And since I have more 3×4 cards than I’ll ever be able to scrap, maybe that means I’ll buy less pattern paper???? Hmmmm….

The green “#AWESOME” came from a 3×4 card. I just trimmed it down to fit where I needed it. Same with the Rock Star quote. I just cut away the rest of the card so that I could get that round shape at the top. Now I’ve started to layer in a few other embellishments as well.

At this point I’m working out where the journaling  and my title will go.

And once they were in place, I finished off page with a few stickers, cards, enamel dots and some twine. Super quick and easy.

Thanks for stopping by!


Tags Of Inspiration | March 2014

by Tammy on March 31, 2014

It’s the end of another month. Oh where does the time go? It was another whirlwind of a month for me. I had a super busy weekend, but luckily, enough time to finish up a few inspiration tags in time to get them posted on this last day of March.

(What are my Tags of Inspiration? Here’s my original post if you missed it and want the full details. I am simply making these tags as a trigger. They remind me of my tools, different embellishments, color palettes, border treatments, techniques to add to a page, etc… They are not exactly meant to be works of art  — some are much prettier than others — they simply provide me with inspiration if needed, when I’m working on a project.)

Inspiration ideas:

  • Gesso is a great glitter adhesive
  • Use gesso with stamps
  • Yellow + Mint + Pink = fun spring palette

Inspiration ideas:

  • Run vellum through a polka dot embossing folder for fun texture
  • Use more purple
  • Sometimes a simple sentiment is all that is needed

Inspiration ideas:

  • Add water drops to distress ink to get that cool reaction
  • A few sequins here and there add a tiny bit of sparkle
  • Navy is a great neutral to balance with brighter colors

Just three tags this month. Maybe I will have time for more next time.

If all goes well, I will be back later this week with a layout. I have had so many events the past couple of weeks that I making a point not to schedule anything after work this week until Friday. Hopefully I will be feeling creative enough after work to finish up the layout on my desk.

Thanks for stopping by today!


He Is Totally Awesome | A Scrapbook Layout

by Tammy on March 25, 2014


I am back to the crafting after a much needed break. I have been so busy lately living life that the crafting has become less of a priority. Which feels strange to me considering it was the one steady thing I could count on during all the years of unemployment. I spent so much time during that period hyper focused on the one thing I could control – crafting.

As much as I love playing with paper and coming up with cool projects to create and share, I have to say I’m loving all the other things I am doing too. I’m taking tons of photos which means there will always be more scrapbook pages and mini albums to make (when I get around to it). But that leads me to admit that the mojo is not exactly flowing right now.

I may need to find some classes to take. Some other way to get the ideas circulating again. I’m not sure what that means in terms of this blog, other than there just aren’t as many projects to share so the posting may be less frequent. I am not going anywhere, but I also have to give myself permission not to create on my super busy weekends when I’m off having fun and creating memories. The last thing I want to do is throw something together just to have something to post here.

Luckily, I do have a layout to share today that I love.

This is my oldest nephew. You may remember me saying that he’s camera shy these days and not interested in having recent photos posted anywhere. I found that out myself after spending time with him last week. I was able to coax him to sit for some photos with me so I will have some new scrapbook material soon. Unfortunately, I will still be blurring his face because he’s still not keen on having photos posted online.

But this photo is several years old and he’s changed so much. I think this one is safe to share.

I love how the torn edge on this layout turned out. After tearing an edge of pattern paper recently, I thought it would be cool to tear an edge of cardstock and have a pattern paper underneath. Here I used Admit One from Echo Park and the striped chevron paper is Top Secret from October Afternoon. The 3×4 cards card are from the Simple Stories Him Snap pack. Most of the banners and the flair came from my March It’s My Life Scraptastic kit. I even dug deep into the stash and found used some work stickers from a Crate Paper sticker sheet from the Toy Box collection.

I also did some hand stitching on this one. I’ve been trying to do that more often because I love the extra touch that it adds. I finally unpacked my sewing machine over the weekend and was shocked that it still worked like a charm. Even after two years in a box. I was able to alter some clothes that were too loose on me. I’ve always wanted to sew on paper with the machine but have never tried it. I worry that the paper will gunk it up and I won’t be able to sew material when I need to. Anyone out there use their sewing machine for paper and to actually sew with material? Any issues doing both?

Well, that is all for today. Thanks for stopping by!


Spring Break | 2014

by Tammy on March 18, 2014

Taking a quick blog break this week. My nephews are in Florida visiting and I’m making some time to goof off with them.

Crafting will resume next week!

Thanks for stopping by.


It’s been awhile since I scrapbooked my European adventure photos, so last weekend I pulled out a stack to see if I could get inspired. I think you’ll be seeing more Europe layouts soon! Even though my trip was four years ago this May, every time I pull out the photos I get to re-live my trip. That’s why it does not bother me I haven’t scrapbooked all the photos yet. I think I’ll be really sad when the album is finally finished!

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you’ve probably heard me talk about my aversion to two-page layouts. I have nothing against them when other people create them, but I personally don’t like to make them. Unless I follow a sketch, I generally end up creating 2 one pagers and have to find some way to tie them together at the end. It’s just easier for me to go with single page layouts.

As I was arranging the photos and figuring out where things would go, the right side of the page came together immediately. But you can see the problem. No room for journaling (a problem I often create for myself), plus I had three more photos I wanted in the layout. Before I resigned myself to forcing out a two-pager, I looked through my collection of divided page protectors. And voila!  I didn’t have to think too much to create this two-pager. The divided page protector did all the work for me.

This particular divided page protector gave me room for three photos and includes a 6×12 slot as well. I viewed that 6×12 slot as an extension of the 12×12 layout on the right. I used the same white background, added a strip of the yellow-green diagonal stripe paper – Lovely Day from My Mind’s Eye, as well as a block of the floral paper – Pretty from My Mind’s Eye, to tie the two parts together.  I ended up filling the entire 6×12 space with journaling as I realized I had quite a bit to say. (When I give myself enough room, I can always fill it up!)

One of the problems I have with some of the photos I took from the bus is the glare off the window. Two photos on this layout had that problem, so I placed a die cut flower right over the photo. Not only was I able to take the emphasis away from the glare, but it also gave me an embellishment point to help balance the two pages and to create another point on each side of the layout to form a visual triangle. Not perfect triangles, but enough that it works to my eye.

Have you tried combining a divided page protector with your 12×12 layouts to create a unique layout like this? There are so many different varieties to choose from now. They really do add something different and a bit of variety to the pages in my albums.

Thanks for stopping by today!

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