Friday, September 30, 2011

friday favorites | september 30, 2011

Happy Friday, peeps! I hope you've all had a good week. Mine has been all about the new job, which I'm totally loving so far.

For those of you who wonder what a software engineer does, I thought I'd share this video (thanks to Darren who killed a few of my brain cells by sending it to me) that shows what software people don't do.

A Visual Basic interface? To track an IP address? Seriously, I cringe every time I hear something like that in a television show or movie. Ugh! Having a Computer Science degree has ruined some genres of TV shows for me permanently! They should hire me as a consultant or something. :)

Okay, enough with the geeky stuff. You're here for crafty links, right? :)


From the top left:
  • Typography geeks will be interested in the Ampersand Tumblr Blog. Yes, someone made a whole blog about ampersands and manged to post a new one every day for a whole year!
  • Basic Grey's blog is off to a great start with so many awesome projects being shared. This card in particular has step by step directions- perfect for those who are a bit card challenged at times (like me!). 
  • Speaking of cards, PaperCrafts Connection has another great post with more ideas for using scraps to make cards. 
  • Learn to make your own washi tape with GCD Studios.
  • Write.Click.Scrapbook. posted a tutorial showing how these lovely gift card sleeves are made.
  • These sweet fabric feathers (along with directions to make them) can be found at 100 Layer Cake.
  • Squee alert!! This adorable Hello Kitty themed birthday was recently featured on Amy Atlas' blog.
  • You can make an adorable little book just like this one by following the tutorial over at Cocoa Daisy.
  • I love this layout by Shimelle Laine because it uses October Afternoon's Rocket Age line in a unique way and because it proves I'm not the only geeky scrapper out there! Actually, I know there are lots of you, and I love you all!
Have a scrappy weekend!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

sweet peach layout | distractable baby is distractable


Good morning, friends! I've got my last Sweet Peach layout from September's kit to share with you today, and I have to say that I'm a little sad to post it. I loved the September kit so much, and I'm not quite ready to say goodbye to it (though I have to tell you that I have October's, and it's just as awesome :) ).


Miss Sophie has been the source of sooooo much great layout material, hasn't she? These photos are from Father's Day weekend, when I walked into my parents' house and almost immediately started taking photos of my adorbz nieceling- which of course distracted her from her mid-morning snack. I can only imagine what fun stuff I'll photograph her doing in the years to come!


I immediately zeroed in on the Amy Tangerine grid paper as the background for this layout, then had fun frilling it up with the girly silhouette brad and some sweet Prima and Basic Grey flowers.


Also, just a quick reminder that the Back To School Crop is still going on over at the Sweet Peach blog! You've only got a couple of days left to get your entries in for the grand prize- a three month subscription to Sweet Peach's kits!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

counterfeit kit blog hop layout | how geeks do breakfast


Welcome to the September Master Forger blog hop for the Counterfeit Kit challenge! Today all the CKCB design team members are sharing projects made with our September kits and featuring a stamping technique. I chose die cutting for mine- something I didn't even know could be a stamping technique until I discovered Papertrey Ink's awesome stamp and die sets (Label Basics used here).


So, the story behind the see, sometimes I take silly, everyday photos. Then I blog them. Then I print them. And then they sit around in my print bin for a while until I find the perfect products to scrap them with. It turned out that all the October Afternoon Rocket Age stuff was perfect for a photo of Darren cooking breakfast with my Williams Sonoma Star Wars pancake molds.


Squee!! Oh, how I love those "Blast Off" tickets and that rocket charm! Both are from the Rocket Age Miscellany Pack.


I'm sad to say that this will be my last hop with the Master Forgers at Counterfeit Kit. My original design team term of 6 months was up this month, and regrettably I was unable to commit to renewing it. I'm so happy to have worked with all these awesome, girls, though, and I look forward to still playing along with Counterfeit Kit when I have time!

Please hop on over to Sheri's blog now, where she has an awesome project to share with you today!

Monday, September 26, 2011

scrapbok update | fashion and home decor influences in halloween lines


It's all things eerie and elegant, spooky and sophisticated, and ghoulishly glamourous. It's the current hot trend in Halloween scrapbooking supplies, and it's also the subject of my latest article at Scrapbook Update.

What is it, you ask? It's the plethora of damask, harlequin, and home decor motifs that are cropping up in Halloween lines everywhere. You can read all about it and take a look at my latest layout (oh, how I ::heart:: Echo Park's Apothecary Emporium line!) here.



Sunday, September 25, 2011

geek girl | the all star wars edition

Hola, fellow geeks (and non-geeks who tolerate my nerd-ish ravings from time to time). I hope you're all having a fabulous weekend. My parents have been visiting since Friday, so it's been lots of pizza, fondue, and taking photos at the botanical gardens around here. My Dad is a big part of the reason I'm such a geek- he loves sci-fi and Star Trek (though I'm still trying to get him into Stargate and Doctor Who).

Now, on to some fun stuff I have to share- this week's selection of geekishness is allllll about Star Wars!

From the top left:
And I'll leave you with a couple of videos, thanks to a link that Dad sent to me earlier this week (and Darren actually sent me the first one a couple of weeks ago):

Until next time, geek out, peeps!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

sophie's first birthday

Yay for getting more caught up on posting my personal photos! This is something I try to do on weekends, just to motivate myself to a) actually edit them and b) get the stories down before I forget them.

Today's story? My adorbz nieceling Sophie's first birthday party! In this case I'm doing it a bit in reverse since I've already scrapped several layouts of this (here, here, here, and here), but, hey, it all gets done in the end, right?

When I arrived at my parents' house for the party on a Sunday morning in July, Miss Thang had just gotten up from her nap and was looking all cute in her party dress.


Friday, September 23, 2011

friday favorites | september 23, 2011

Psssst!! If you're looking for the Counterfeit Kit challenge layout, scroll down to the post right under this one!

Happy Friday, peeps! As of today I am officially unemployed...for the weekend. :) I'm between jobs at the moment and will be starting a new one bright and early Monday morning. I'm incredibly sad to leave a place that I've been for so long (7 years!) but at the same time excited to start on a new adventure with new people and a new program. I'm staying in the same field- software development- so I'm still a geeky engineer (and will probably always be).

So, for this weekend only I am solely a professional blogger. :) And, boy, do I have some fun stuff to share with you today!


From the top left:
  • Yes, that is an Angry Birds sandwich! You can find it an many other adorable lunches at Eighteen 25.
  • Learn to make these sweet crepe paper flowers (and even a whole garland of them) at Oh Happy Day.
  • Bit Rebels shares several ways to turn your digital photos (especially all those phone pics!) into cool projects.
  • This lovely mini album can be found at the Sassafras blog- their papers are so wonderful for projects like this!
  • Crate Paper has a tutorial for making mini pockets from journaling spots.
  • Hambly Screen Prints posted a tutorial showing how to make this fun bunting from their washi tapes.
  • The design team at Ormulu recently shared their Week in the Life albums. You can find more of my favorite examples here and here.
  • The OCD in me is happy looking at this color-coded scrap room, found on October Afternoon's blog.
  • This lovely mini album by Michelle Clement was recently posted on the American Crafts blog. I love her colorful style!
Have a scrappy weekend!

counterfeit kit layout | tourist troopers


So I kinda left you hanging for a while, didn't I? I made that whole huge kit and tons of add-ons for September's Counterfeit Kit challenge, and then proceeded to not mention it again for more than two weeks! Sorry about that- all I can say is that it's been crazy, crazy busy here, and I didn't even have time to pull the kit out again until last Friday when I packed it up to take to a crop!

That doesn't mean I love it any less, though! In fact, it's one of my favorites because of all the awesome Rocket Age stuff in there by October Afternoon- it's the perfect backdrop for some of my geekiest photos, including these stormtrooper photos from Star Wars Celebration V. Yup, you're seeing things right- one has a stuffed Ewok, and the other is taking photos with a digital camera.


I love that this teddy bear charm is included in Rocket Age, and I love even more that it totally goes with the photo I shot of one of the stormtroopers carrying around a stuffed Ewok! It was too cute (and funny!) I tell you!


The Counterfeit Kit challenge for this layout was to use stamps to make an embellishment, so I pulled out a star background stamp (part of Papertrey Ink's 1776 set) and my pad of Jenni Bowlin Cough Syrup ink to decorate a shipping tag.


You gotta love life's little adventures, right? :)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

simple scrapper layout | slightly obsessed


I think it's high time that I posted my second Simple Scrapper layout for the month! I used one of the layered templates from the September Collection as a blueprint for this page, breaking up the large photo block into a bunch of small photos (because working with big photos makes me want to pull my hair out...).


The subject matter is something that I like to think is pretty unique to me- my obsession with foreign grocery stores. I've blogged about exploring them in Nassau and Aruba, so why not scrap about it, right?


I must have blogged about it more than I realized when posting my Aruba photos, because after one particular post I got an actual phone call from a friend of mine in Boston asking me why in the world I took so many pictures of grocery stores...I think he thinks I'm a weirdo for it, but, hey, whatever floats your boat, right? I'm nothing if not unapologetically myself. :)


Another one of my current obsessions also popped up on this layout- decorative brads. I love, love, love these brads from My Mind's Eye's Stella and Rose collection (and now the ones from all the CHA Summer releases including Lost and Found 2) and find myself using them on almost every layout. They're such easy ways to add little pops of color and interest.


And every once in a while you find a brad with just the right theme, like this compass brad. So perfect for a travel layout!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

sweet peach | back to school crop

Are you guys up for a challenge today? I've got a brand new one up at Sweet Peach Crop Shop as part of the online crop they're hosting for the next couple of weeks! I hope you'll head over there and check it out- the grand prize is a three month subscription to Sweet Peach's awesome kits!

So hop your little sweet peaches over and play along with us!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

scrapbook update/scrappy favorites | baker's twine


My newest article at Scrapbook Update is all about colored string. Seriously!! Baker's twine is a hot trend right now and also a personal favorite staple in my scrapbooking. I had originally intended to write it up as part of my Scrappy Favorites series, but after seeing all the awesome twine at CHA I decided to write a full-length piece for Scrapbook Update instead!

Here's a peek at just two of the many cards I made for the article. These happen to use the Doodle Twine pictured above (along with papers from Bella Blvd's Too Cute To Spook and Christmas Wishes lines), but there are soooo many other manufacturers making so many varieties of this awesome product, and I'll be happy to tell you all about them if you hop over to Scrapbook Update!



Monday, September 19, 2011

giveaway | scrapbook and cards today magazine

Remember how I gave away a subscription to Scrapbook and Cards Today magazine a few weeks ago?

Guess what?

I get to do it again! To celebrate the impending release of their Fall issue (hitting stores and their web site this Friday), Scrapbook and Cards Today is going to give one of my blog readers a free print subscription!

Here's a bit more about the magazine:
Scrapbook and Cards Today is a high-quality, sophisticated publication that celebrates scrapbooking, card making, and other contemporary papercrafts. Scrapbook & Cards Today provides readers with a visually appealing, idea and technique focused publication that showcases all of the “latest and greatest” industry favourites.  Readers can either pick up a complimentary issue at one of our distributing stores or can either download a pdf to their smart phones, tablet or computer or can view it in our onsite e-reader at  And the best part, it’s free!

You can follow SCT on facebook ( , twitter (@SCTmagazine) or visit our blog for daily inspiration at!
If you'd like a chance to win a print subscription to this awesome magazine, just leave a comment on this post by midnight CST on Friday, September 23, 2011. I'll use to select and contact a winner on Saturday, September 24. Please leave your email address on the Disqus comment form (in one of the hidden fields is fine as long as I can find it) of this post so I can contact you if you win.

Also? The winner of the last subscription giveaway never got in touch with me, so I will be drawing a new winner tomorrow and attempting to email them directly. Apparently this whole posting the winner's name thing just isn't working!

Good luck, everyone!

sweet peach layout | thai


Woohoo!! Good morning, bloggy peeps!! I've got a new layout to share with you today, along with this fun news from Sweet Peach Crop Shop:

For the next two weeks Sweet Peach will be hosting an online crop on its blog with all kinds of goodies and challenges, with a design team blog hop scheduled for this weekend to spread even more fun around. And the best part? The winner (selected randomly from all entries during the crop) will receive a three month subscription to Sweet Peach's kits! Holy cow, that's an awesome prize! So be sure to get your booty over to the Sweet Peach blog, check out the challenges, and enter to win!

Sweet Peach is kicking off the crop off in style with this fabulous sketch. Those blocks are great for photos and patterned paper chunks alike, so I mixed them up in my layout. I love the awesome patterned papers in the Amy Tangerine line from American Crafts, so I was more than happy to have a spot or two to add more of them to my page.


I also ::heart:: these paper leaves (also from the Amy Tangerine line). You may recall seeing brighter versions of them in this layout that I shared last week, and here I've used the more muted colors (all of the leaves are from the same pack- love that!) that fit the more serene "Thai" tone of the page.


And these little lotus cabochons from Webster's pages? Sooooooooo sigh worthy!


Now, get your little sweet peaches over to the SPCS blog and get scrapping to enter yourself to win the grand prize!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

geek girl | on star wars, casting, and bruce campbell

So, Suvudu has been having casting "polls" for the last couple of weeks in honor of the 20th (OMG, 20th??!?!) anniversary of the debut of Timothy Zahn's Heir to the Empire. Otherwise known as the book that got me into Star Wars. When I was 12. Please don't do the math.

Back to Suvudu's casting call...I was fine with it when they were talking about characters like Mara Jade and Talon Kaarde- you know, the "new" people. But when they got to characters from the original trilogy it got a little weird for me. The saving grace? David Tennant was one of the choices for Wedge Antilles- I can totally see that, straight down to the Scottish accent. But the Han Solo choices? Give me a break! There's only one other man besides Harrison Ford who could play that part- Bruce Campbell. :) Sorry, Nathan Fillion- you played an awesome smuggler on Firefly, but Bruce totally has you on this one.

Okay, now that I've had my little rant, it's time to look at some other stuff from around geekville...

From the top left:
Until next time, geek out, peeps!

Friday, September 16, 2011

friday favorites | september 16, 2011

Howdy!! How's everyone doing this evening? I, for one, am a tired little scrapper tonight. Earlier this week I spent several late nights (some so late that they were early mornings) in the software lab at work, and then tonight I had the chance to go to a crop at church and took it! I have several pages for upcoming articles and projects that are now standing by, waiting for stitching on the sewing machine and some other finishing touches.

Oh, and did you see this? It was so sweet of May to include me in this week's Noteworthy column with my Bella Blvd design team news- still pinching myself on that one!

Now, how about some cool projects from out and about in the blogosphere?

From the top left:
  • I love seeing embellishments used in creative ways. Those "ice cream scoops" on the front of this card found at October Afternoon's blog? Those are little chipboard pennant banner pieces- so creative!
  • Givers Log shares some sweet gift wrapping made with tissue paper and decoupaged clothespins.
  • This sweet, handmade "Favorite Things" mini album can be found at American Crafts Studio blog.
  • Michelle Clement hosted a little Q + A session on her blog recently, answering both practical and abstract questions about her scrapbooking and giving some pretty thorough answers!
  • Marcy Penner posted a video tutorial showing how she makes her signature paint/mist splatters.
  • I found this great tutorial for making paper doilies via Craft Gossip.
  • Betsy Veldman walks her readers through the process of making these gorgeous resin papers.
  • I've seen these accordian flower backdrops popping up all over the place lately, and Ruffled shows how you can make your own!
  • How's this for a new and creative use for paint chips? Use them to make wall art! The Red Thread has more photos and some details showing you how.
Have a scrappy weekend!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

sweet peach layout | farmers market flowers


Hola! Just popping in really quickly tonight to share another layout that I made with the September kit from Sweet Peach Crop Shop.


I have this habit of photographing nearly every flower that passes through the house, and these beauties that we picked up during a trip to the local farmer's market this summer were just too pretty not to scrap!


Making messy layers of paper around photos is one of my new favorite things to do on layouts. Patterned paper is hands down my favorite scrapbooking supply, so any excuse to use more of it is fine by me!


I'm also totally loving these paper leaves from the Amy Tangerine line- they'll make an appearance on another layout later this month, too!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

bella blvd | design team annoucement!

Do you have ANY idea how hard it is to sit on news like this for a week and not tell anyone?!?! Thank goodness it's finally Wednesday, and I can let you see this!

Someone please pinch me, because I must be dreaming- I'm on the new Bella Artista design team at Bella Blvd! I'm just floored looking through that list, because this is one talented bunch. I can't wait to start working with them!

I'm also allowed to pull back the curtain now on one of the layouts that I made as part of the design team call (the others will be shared in the next couple of weeks during all the design team introduction festivities). This one uses Bella's Christmas Wishes collection along with photos from our church's Christmas Eve service last year- at a baseball stadium, no less!





I absolutely cannot wait to dive into this- it's going to be such a fun year!!

sweet peach | kit storage


Not too long ago I asked you, my lovely readers, if you'd be interested in hearing more about how I store my scrapbooking kits since I recently completely revamped my system. Several of you said yes, so I shot some photos and wrote a post all about it over at the Sweet Peach Crop Shop blog!

Several of you also left wonderful comments on the original post about how you store your own kits, and I encourage everyone to hop back over there, as well, and check them out!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

scrapbook update | combatting creative burnout


That's me, doing what I do- kicking butt!! That photo was taken during my second degree black belt test last November- I don't think I've ever physically worked so hard for anything in my life! For two months before the test I bumped up the number of classes I took per week to a whopping six, and, trust me, there were days that I felt like doing anything but putting on that uniform and working out for an hour (or two, sometimes).

And, you know what? Sometimes it's the same way with scrapbooking. Sometimes you may feel a little burnt out, a little overwhelmed, or just generally uninspired, and you feel like doing anything but scrapping. If you're in that place, or have been in that place, or anticipate ever being in that place (I think that should cover just about everyone!), you should check out my latest article at Scrapbook Update- Combatting Creative Burnout.

It might be just what you need to kick burnout's butt!