28 February 2013

About Life, Paper and Scrapbooking ...

I love bright happy colours and you can't get much happier or brighter than this little collection being used for a colour challenge on Life. paper. Scrapbook.

I also love Crate Paper patterned papers - just love them.  In fact I love them SO much I tend to use every single piece of the papers and embellishments - right down to the last square inch. 

Being able to combine my love of bright and happy with my love of Crate Paper made me very happy indeed.  These papers are from the Random collection.



The Studio Challenges ... Part 2 ...

The second challenge on The Studio Challenges blog was to create a layout using no patterned paper but to get creative with washi tape. Again some very funky inspiration pieces which certainly get you thinking on what you can do with a few strips of washi !

For my own layout I covered some scrap pieces of cardstock with the tape and then cut out circles with a punch. I used a stencil and an ink pad to blend a background and then used some extra pieces of tape and a few flowers to complete my page.

Some studio inspiration ...

It seems like February is not only the month of love in the real world but in scrappy land too as a large percentage of the challenges involve pink, love themes or the inclusion of hearts.

For their first challenge this month The Studio Challenges have asked their followers to use at least 5 hearts on their page.  I loved the inspirational layouts from the design team - some really terrific work there.

I decided to try and use up some old supplies - I'm on a "use my stash" drive at the moment as it seems to be multiplying before my very eyes - so I pulled out some older chipboard stickers and my scrap box of bits and pieces to put this together. 

27 February 2013

Some XOXO love ...

I thought I might try a new challenge blog this month and in my searching came across True XOXO Scrapbooking.

I've done two of their monthly challenges.

#40 involved a delightful Audrey Hepburn quote ... 

“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.”    ~ Audrey Hepburn

I've actually used this one myself a while back on a layout and this time wanted to do something a little less obvious than pink or girly pages so hunted through my box of yet unscrapped photographs and came up with one of me washing my tiny baby daughter on the second day of her life.  To my husband and I she was a small miracle so what better line to use on this page.

#42  I believe the general principal behind XOXO is to find inspiration from the designers page submissions.    I'll admit I am not sure if you are also meant to follow the same theme of each challenge as this isn't really made clear on the site.  I decided to use a layout by Christa Uttely as the basis for my our page.  I like the design layout she has used.

My page isn't about love (other than my own love I have for my daughter) and doesn't contain a single heart - let's just say that by this stage in February I was completely and utterly "hearted" out.

25 February 2013

Childhood Memories - Week 08

Childhood Memories Week 08 - Vivid Memories

This week is our final look at primary/grade school and I am setting you an easy task (well I hope you will think it easy!).

I want you to cast your mind back to those days at school and record a memory of something or someone or even a specific moment that really stands out for you from this period in your life.

Perhaps it was a special teacher who made a lasting impression or an award you received at speech night. Maybe you can still remember how proud you felt swimming at the school carnival or being made school captain. Perhaps the vivid memory is something more painful - breaking a bone falling off the play equipment or falling down the front steps. Maybe you had your first brush with childhood love at primary school and can still remember holding hands with that special boy.

If I were to ask you what it is you remember most from primary school what would it be?

24 February 2013

Orange Paperie ...

Yet more hearts involved in the monthly challenge over on Orange Paperie although this one is sketch related with the added criteria of buttons, beads or sequins. 

This is my take on the sketch.  The sequin flowers are actually much more red than they appear in the photo - more in line with the colour of the heart. 

20 February 2013

Show us your stuff in February ...

Not a heart in sight ,instead Show us your stuff has the sweetest inspiration piece up this month ....

and with just so many ways you could interpret this and some delightful examples from the design team, the sky really was the limit.

I decided to use both the creative side of this cute little poster as well as using the basic colour scheme of lime, blue, yellow, pink and white.  I've used the very last bits and pieces from an October Afternoon Midway kit with a few pieces of card and scrap from my basket.

It is a standard joke in my house that I could have filled boxes and boxes of artwork sent home from pre-school with my daughter - our family fridge was literally covered in her wonderful creations when she was little.  My son, however, was a much different kettle of fish.  I think I might have a dozen creative pieces from him aover the same time period and most of those were created on rainy days and are either finger paintings or ones created like above - it think it was much less about the art than the mess!!

19 February 2013

Childhood Memories - Week 07

Childhood Memories Week 07 - The great beyond

One of the best parts about school for me were the excursions/field trips, camps or just days away from the actual classroom. We certainly did not get as many days off as children of today but when they rolled around for me, they were extra, extra special.

Some may have been as lowly as walking a few blocks to visit the local supermarket to compare prices of produce, others might have involved getting on an actual bus and being driven away from school to attend a concert or play in another town or suburb. Perhaps you were lucky enough to get out into the countryside to experience nature firsthand. I vividly remember going to a dairy farm some miles out of my country town to see how milk was produced. Having been brought up on a farm it certainly was no real lesson for me but I can remember how some of my town classmates were both amazed and appalled (at the same time) by the experience!

Did you get to have school field trips at your school? What can you remember about them?

Camps and longer trips were greeted by mixed reactions. Some kids just loved them and couldn’t wait to pack their bags and head off into the unknown. Many others were left sobbing at the departure point and literally had to be hauled away from their parents and led wailing onto buses. Were you willing or wailing when you headed off to camp?

I’m not sure how long the tradition has been going here in Australian but even back in my day, our school Year 6 went to Canberra to see how our federal parliament worked. It was a three-day excursion, yes two whole nights away from home, sleeping in bunk beds and staying up late!! An amazing experience for kids from a small country town. I can still recall the feeling of elation I had as I hopped onto the bus clutching the woollen blanket my Grandma bought me for the long winter trip and the wonder in which I greeted each new and exciting experience in our nations capital.

Is there a special excursion or field trip you vividly recall from your primary/grade school days? Please share it with us.

15 February 2013

Challenge #39 ...

I was delighted when I discovered Challenge Me Happy #39 was a white space challenge.  This is one for me - 99% of my layouts involve white space.

I am also on a major kick to try and reduce my "busting at the seams" scrappy stash - honestly I have so much stuff I could open my own store.  I have made a pact with myself - no more purchases (other than adhesive) until I have completed 100 layouts from my currently supplies.  I'm doing well so far considering I don't scrap an awful lot and I also digi scrap for certain albums I have ongoing.  My current paper layout count is sitting on 14 plus 4 cards.  I am also trying to use up a pile of older photos - ones I set aside to scrap but I never got around to using them, some are years old.  Feels good when I can take another one from that pile - this one is of my daughter strutting her stuff in a pair of my high heels.  Didn't we all do that at some point in our lives?

All about backgrounds ...

We have the delightful and very talented Mandy Dodd guest designing for us on Soul Scrappers and setting us her own personal challenge

Your challenge is to create a background with any product/medium – whether it is single layered such as a mist or towards being multi-layered… your choice.....  Look at the scraps you might have lying around… even scrap pattern paper which could be cut up in pieces and adhered to the background paper…  You could add gesso, paint or mists… experiment!

Here is her example layout

I have created my own background from reverse stencils (ie using the already multi inked stencil face down onto cardstock so you get the negative image). It's a great way to conserve ink.  I also like to use up as much of a kit or paper range as I possibly can - in this case it was Midway by October Afternoon where I was down to just bit and pieces of paper and only a few stickers.


This is the entrance to Luna Park on Sydney Harbour.

Scrap Africa ...

This layout I have done for a sketch challenge on Scrap Africa. 

Here's a lesson for us all - I didn't notice any difference in the two photographs I used for this page at all when I was working on this layout but when I came to take a photo, one has come out distinctly different to the other.  I had no idea why.  It wasn't the lighting, it wasn't shadow or where I was standing when I took the picture.  The issue is that these two photos were printed in two different print runs.  They weren't different companies - but a Fuji lab but on different days.  I had no idea it could make so much difference and although to my own eye I could not detect the changes to the camera it was obvious.  Lesson learnt - if you intend to use more than one photo on your page make sure they are printed at the same time.

12 February 2013

Childhood Memories - Week 06

 Let’s get physical

This week we are still roving around the junior schools of our childhood, in fact a grand tour might be in order.

How many schools did you attend over your junior years? Did you start and end your primary/grade school days at the same educational facility or did your family move around a lot when you were a child and you had the pleasure (or misfortune) of attending several? Perhaps generations of your family all attended the same school – how cool is that! Do you have photographs of your parents or grandparents at this school in a recognizable location? Perhaps your own children and grandchildren attend the very same school you did. Perhaps you might like to tell us about this wonderful family connection.

Can you remember much about the physical aspects of the school you attended? Was it a large sprawling series of buildings with many pupils? Was it a smaller school with limited classrooms and a small number of students? Was it made from brick or timber, on one level or several? Was it bright and cheerful or dark and imposing? Did you have large playing fields and playground facilities or did you need to go to other locations for sport and physical education classes? Let us know what it was like.

Was your school named for something significant? Many schools are named for local celebrities or notable citizens, others for significant events or landmarks – was yours one of these? Do you know the meaning of this name?

Do you now live close to where you went to school? Have you considered going back and taking some photographs of how it is today and comparing it to when you were there? You can do something similar on Google Maps or you might discover your old school has a website and an archive of current and historic photographs.

Above is a satellite picture of my old school site and I have to say the overall layout has not changed much at all in the intervening years. I can still pinpoint the buildings I was in for each year I attended here and locate the library block, canteen and various other landmarks. I can remember going around and around the rectangular playing field doing marching drills for the annual Anzac parade.

My husband spent his early childhood in the UK and on a return visit in 2009 he actually visited his old school and received a grand tour by the principal who showed him the changes that had taken places over the years and presented him with a copy of his initial school registration. Have you ever revisited your old school – physically or online?

Can you recall what your uniform looked like (if you wore one) and what it consisted of? Do you remember what the school colours were or the school emblem/flag/motto? Perhaps that is testing your brain a little too much!

Memories in this age bracket will tend to be remembered in snippets - specific days and events, particular teachers and the things they did (good or bad), daily occurrences that have stuck in your mind (assemble, school prayer or song, the home bell, recess and lunch), major events you were a part of (school plays, recitals, sports carnivals), particular friendships and the goings-on that circled around them.

Tell us more about your early school days and the school(s) you attended.

05 February 2013

Childhood Memories - Week 05

School Daze

This week we are concentrating on the things we remember about primary/grade school. To some of us school might have been a wonderful experience, a place of refuge and learning. We might have embraced all there was on offer - played with friends, enjoyed the sporting activities, joined in with choir or music and in general, can look back fondly at these years. Others might not have such warm thoughts of the years spent learning. How did you feel about school? Was it a positive or negative experience for you?

Do you recall a special teacher who made the learning experience all that much better. Tell us about them. Perhaps you recall the teacher for more ominous reasons – I will ever forget a teacher I had in Year 5 who absolutely terrorised the boys in my class, not a day went by when one of their unfortunate number wasn’t dragged from class to be sent to the headmaster or to be given “6 of the best”.

Maybe you remember specific events like a particular school excursion or representing your school in a community celebration or at a sporting carnival. You may vividly recall a particular speech night or open day when parents and /or grandparents visited the school. What was that like? How did it make you feel?

You possibly remember assembles, like I do - standing in the open school playground in the heat of summer listening to our school principal go on and on and on about nothing whatsoever when all you wanted to do was get inside out of the sun.

Memories of school to you might be less about the activities and more about the friendships you made. We all had “best” best friends at school – girls stuck with girls in groups of three or four. We played games at lunchtime – can you remember what they were? Elastics, hopscotch, skipping rope, jacks, marbles? Tell us about these wonderful inexpensive games we all loved so much.

Do you recall how you got to school each day? Did you walk or ride a bike or on a bus or did someone drop you off at school? Think back to the details of this. If you walked, write about what you did along the way and what you saw. Did you walk with friends or with siblings? Can you recall how you felt on cold winter or rainy days? I remember how tired my ams became carrying my school case. I would switch from one hand to the next trying to even out the weight (this was in the years long before backpacks became the norm).

What do you remember about these early years of education?

03 February 2013

From Screen to Scrap February ...

February's inspiration on  From Screen to Scrap will come from the movie poster 'CASINO JACK'.

Extra Criteria
1pt = Grey base card stock
2 pts = playing card/s
3 pts = money notes
Here is my take on this challenge ..
and I very much like Sandra Robinson's take on it as well.
Come join us this month - we'd love to have you.

02 February 2013

An Archi-scraps announcement

Very happy to announce I am now part of the design team at Archi-scraps along with ...






Archi-scraps is a relatively new scrapbooking challenge blog set up by Julene Matthews and finds inspiration from architecture (buildings).
The inspiration piece for February is very striking.   It is fountain in North Carolina,USA by Czech artist David Černýs called  'Metalmorphosis.'

Present a layout (or card) using a headshot (close up) of a person and use bling.

Maybe it is because it is a giant, mirrored head which rotates, spits water, deconstructs and reconstructs before our eyes. Or perhaps it is the fact that the whole thing is filmed on webcam so you can keep tabs on it at all times. But it's most likely because 'Metalmorphosis' makes our world look the way we secretly hoped it would when we saw 'Terminator' for the first time.

The mammoth undertaking weighs 14 tons, and the "seven-metre tall structure with horizontally-moving stainless-steel plates... form, and re-form, a giant metal head." Since 2007, it has been on display at the Whitehall Technology Park in Charlotte, North Carolina.here's a link to a video where you can watch it move.

When  I first saw this piece I immediately thought of three things - layers, blue and water.
On closer inspection I realised that it wasn't just blue but has elements of green and white throughout it as well.  Upon searching through my photographs I located a set of head and shoulder shots on my daughter and her boyfriend taken on the Sydney Harbour Bridge overlooking Sydney harbour which I think worked well for the criteria.  I used strips of patterned paper placed vertically on my page rather than horizontal and added a couple of rhinestones to represent the bling.


February ARTastic ....

The February inspiration on ARTastic comes to you from famous Australian artist ...

Charles Meere (1890-1961) with his painting Australian Beach Pattern (1940)

Criteria - Free choice, make of this as you will

A little about Charles Meere

Meere was one of a group of Sydney artists who took a modern take on classical artistic traditions as a way of portraying national life in the period between the First and Second World Wars.

Born in London, Meere trained as a mural artist at the Royal College of Art, where he was influenced by the ideas of William Morris on craftmanship and the role of the designer. Moving to Australia, he worked as a commercial artist and as a cartographer and illustrator for newspapers.

His most famous work is Australian Beach Pattern which depicts a tableau of beach goers whose athletic perfection takes on monumental, heroic proportions. Meere created a crowded and complex composition through the pattern of figures, which appears as a still-life of suspended strength. This iconic painting encapsulates the myth of the healthy young nation symbolised by the tanned, god-like bodies of the sunbathers.

I love what the Creative Team have come up with this month.  Here is a small sample - you'' need to pop onto the blog to see more and to submit your own entry - we'd love to have you play along.



01 February 2013

Some exciting news ...

It was lovely to learn I had been selected to join the first ever design team on Archi-scraps, a relatively new challenge blog based on architecture and finding inspiration from the exteriors of buildings.

The February inspiration is already up ...

Present a layout (or card) using a headshot(close up) of a person and use bling.

Czech artist David Černý's North Carolina piece 'Metalmorphosis.'

Maybe it is because it is a giant, mirrored head which rotates, spits water, deconstructs and reconstructs before our eyes. Or perhaps it is the fact that the whole thing is filmed on webcam so you can keep tabs on it at all times. But it's most likely because 'Metalmorphosis' makes our world look the way we secretly hoped it would when we saw 'Terminator' for the first time.

The mammoth undertaking weighs 14 tons, and the "seven-metre tall structure with horizontally-moving stainless-steel plates... form, and re-form, a giant metal head." Since 2007, it has been on display at the Whitehall Technology Park in Charlotte, North Carolina.here's a link to a video where you can watch it move.


Come play along with us.