September 6, 2017

Planning and Memory Keeping: September Setup - Cocoa Daisy and foxyfix


September Planner Setup in foxyfix Boss Babe Kate No. 4 single
As you know I have been planning in a Daisy Dori from Cocoa Daisy since March. And ever since then I have been adjusting my planner system on the quest for planner peace. I have finally come to realize that having planner peace for me means having a system that will easily adjust to my needs. And that it doesn't mean having a fixed setup and layout each and every month. For September I tweaked things a little again and actually filmed two setup videos: My September Planner Setup as well as my September Journal Setup.



I tried having a separate social media insert in August and even though I really like the idea, it made me realize again that I am a "one planner/insert type of girl" - so I merged my daily planning and my social media insert into one. I gained some space in my daily planning insert by putting the weekend days together on one page since I never really plan on those days. This way I was able to have an Instagram list, a budget tracker, an ideas page as well as a monthly catch all to do list in addition to my usual pages: my meal planning and my goals page.


September Journal Setup in foxyfix Botanical Poppy No. 6 single
Even though I really like my monthly journals and how they turn out once they are finished, they are a lot of hard work. I actually stopped Project Life for 2017 because I was so overwhelmed by it and replaced it with the journals thinking this was much easier to do. This is clearly not the case. Creating these weekly memory planning spreads is something I really enjoy doing at the moment but then filling up the rest of the insert is becoming more and more of a struggle. First of all, I think I need to let go of guilt tripping myself when I don't finish an insert, having blank pages is not a failure. Then I need to rethink my approach: maybe printing larger pictures will do the trick or adding a quote, a beautiful card or adding more ephemera will also help. I am already thinking about my plans for 2018 ... right now, they are very frightening because I would move out of a traveler's notebook for memory keeping. *shock* I'm not ready yet to let go but I'm thinking about it. Here is my Journal Setup for September:

August 27, 2017

"Einschulung" - October Afternoon


I received the scalloped paper from October Afternoon in a warehouse box from danipeuss in 2014. Even though, I didn't know what to do with it and even though, I didn't really like it at that time, I kept it in my stash forever with the intention of using it on a school layout for one of my kids. When Christine asked me to participate in her "Back to School" youtube series, I instantly knew that I just had to use this paper.


Since I have started to collect quite a little October Afternoon stash, I decided to use it to create my layout. I didn't really own a lot of October Afternoon embellishments (I just went to our local Flea Market hosted by my local scrapbook store and bought all October Afternoon that I could find), so I looked through my embellishments and pulled items from crate paper "Craft Market" and Shimelle's "Starshine" and "Little by Little". They all went well with the colors of the papers and the colors in the photos. And so I went to work.


The layout came together very quickly and I was able to layer lots and lots of embellishments onto the page. Surprisingly so, because I usually struggle with lots and lots of layers. But - I am absolutely in love with it. It's just perfect in every aspect ... so perfect that I am actually afraid to work on my next layout because I am quite certain that it won't be as perfect as this one. If you want to see how the layout came together, watch my process video on youtube.

August 17, 2017

Planning in the Summer?! And what happened after.


Today I have a blogpost for you that was published on the Cocoa Daisy blog in June. Now, why do I make you read (parts of) this post now? In the middle of August? Because it didn't stop there!

"It’s Simone again with a blogpost for you that is very near and dear to me. As you know, I love having a pretty planner but even more so, I want my planner to work for me. Last year I had my very first planner crisis during June when we had family visiting from Germany and the kids being home from school. I didn’t have the time, energy or desire to use my DaisyDori insert and so it was mostly blank. I started feeling guilty because I didn’t use it and then actually cancelled my subscription because of that."

"This year I wanted to approach things differently. I had already learned that what works perfectly well one month doesn’t necessarily work the next. Earlier this year I came to the insight that yes indeed, with a system as open as the Daisy Dori I do not have to plan the same each and every month. I can totally adapt the layout and setup of my pages as I need them to be. So for June I decided to completely abandon the daily planning in a personal size Daisy Dori and plan and journal in a standard Daisy Dori instead. I am using the first part of the DaisyDori with the sectioned grid pages for a calendar with one week on two pages. The rest of the Daisy Dori is left for journaling. If you want to see what I prepared beforehand here is my June Planner Setup on youtube."

"My plan was to fill the first part of the Daisy Dori with little snippets of life. So that’s what I did: with black ink and stamps I added in our plans for the day and then I used stickers and washi tape (mostly from the Planner kit, Planner Addon as well as the DITL kit) to embellish the day."



Since the weekly spreads take up part of the Daisy Dori, filling the rest of the insert wasn't as hard as it was before. In June I used the rest for the highlights of our time spent with my parents. It turned out so great, here is a link to the Journal Share.


In July I did the same thing as in June: weekly memory planner spreads. And the rest of the Daisy Dori was filled with prompts from challenges, lists, tidbits and our everyday summer life. I just finished it this weekend and will be sharing more next Tuesday on my youtube channel.


My original plan was to go back to my usual planning style in August, but I had so much fun with the weekly spreads that I decided to keep on making them. This has led to minimal decorating in my personal Daisy Dori which is absolutely great because I seem to be more productive with a very linear planning structure. I have already made a list on how I can optimize my planner even more in September and I am looking forward to all the weekly spreads I can decorate in the coming months. I just finished the first one for August, here is the process video.

August 11, 2017

"Tomato Sandwich" Stuck?! Sketches


You all know how I love a good sketch - I sometimes even use them in my Traveler's Notebook. Earlier this year when I did some research for my challenge for iNSD, I came across the Stuck?! Sketches blog and found that those sketches really appealed to me. So when I saw the Design Team Call this week, I knew I needed to try out. So here is one part of my application: I am using one of the August sketches and working with it.


I am still working with Amy Tangerine's "On A Whim" collection for my Scrap Friday series on youtube, there are several layouts left from my layout selection and these two photos were perfect for the sketch. Instead of cutting them apart, I left them right next to each other and just started working. As you can see from the sketch above I mirrored the sketch so that my son would look into the page.


I created three embellishment clusters as suggested in the sketch using flair buttons as the focal points in the clusters surrounding the photo. When creating clusters I try to repeat the different elements in each of the clusters. The three clusters help to guide the eye across the page. Starting at the top left hand corner, your eyes move across the photo.


And automatically stop at the heart flair. Can you see how my son seems to look at it? Yeah, I placed it there on purpose.


When I received the Thickers with the whole collection from April Lilli, I did not think the alphas would go well with the papers and was very reluctant to use them. I was wrong, I used them twice already and totally love how they work on this layout. And now, just in case you made it down to the end of this long blogpost, there is a process video on youtube, where I tell you more about my design choices.

August 7, 2017

Studio Tour No. 1: My Planner Station

In May I was on the Cocoa Daisy Blog with my take on a Studio Tour. Yes, it is not a real Studio Tour because I actually don't have my own designated studio space. The only thing that I have is part of our kitchen pantry, a raskog cart from IKEA and a wooden planner station in our family dining room. And this is exactly what I am going to share with you today!


When we first moved here I was very sad that I had to give up my studio: I had been sewing and crafting in there all day everyday for the past six years before the move and now I would only have a dining room table and all of my supplies stored in various places throughout the house. But after we had been here for several months and the boxes had been unpacked and this house had become more of a home I started to enjoy creating at the dining room table.


Over time, I was able to set up a raskog cart with all of my tools and items I need all the time. And just recently, I moved this unused wooden box that I brought from Germany and had been using for Project Life into the built in cabinet and set it up as a planner station. Right next to it, I also keep my journaling pouch that I set up for Doris Sander's Journaling Challenge as well as my pencil pouch.


When I plan or journal in my DaisyDori I often take the box and place it right in front of me on the table so I have all the gorgeous Cocoa Daisy planner items right there. I have a video for you where I walk you through the station and talk a bit more about my "studio space".



Finally, this is where I keep all of my scrapbooking and crafting supplies. The right side of the pantry is all mine: in the cabinets on the bottom I keep my papers and projects in IRIS containers and all of my stickers and embellishments in various containers. The top left cabinet houses all of my mixed media supplies and the top right cabinet is home to journals, inserts, my old camera and refills for my Canon Selphy. On the countertop, I store my current projects, my large guillotine trimmer, all of my stamps as well as an IKEA box (Tjena) with my DITL cards.



If you ask me now I will tell you that I really like my studio space just the way it is: I need to clean up after myself every time I create, so I will never have a desk that doesn't have space for me to be creative. And I also really like that I have to create project kits, this makes creating a project so much easier and faster. And lastly, as much as I was annoyed at my pantry space in the beginning, I really love that I can sneak in the pantry while cooking and work on a project.

Thanks so much for taking the time out of your day and reading my little "I don't have a studio" story. Now, please share your studio setup in the comments below: Do you have your own space? Or do you also create in the family space? And do you like it? Or what would you love to change?

May 18, 2017

April Lilli Design Team: Two layouts with Flora No. 1


Yes, I actually made two layouts about boys with the florally, girly collection "Flora No. 1" by Carta Bella. And I really love how they turned out! They are both similar in the way I use the papers: rough edges, different layers and some kind of mixed media.

This is the first one I made: I used white cardstock as a background and stamped the botanical background stamp with three or four different shades of purple and green. Then I started creating a photo mat using patterned papers and and pieces of the ephemera pack.


I was very inspired by a layout by Zoe Guest where she took one of the photo mats and completely crinkled the paper up and then flattened it back out. I really wanted to try that and I love the awesome texture it created. I then took ephemera pieces from the ephemera pack: I just cut them so that they would fit in as layers. There were several flags in the pack as well, but none of the patterns and colors fit the layout, so I just cut my own flags using one as a template.

I had my layers, I knew what the title was going to be but I realized that my whole design was too far to the right and too far down. The latter was easily solved by moving the complete photo mat up a bit. To balance the lopsided design I added two strips of the main papers and a border sticker from the sticker sheet. After I had added the journaling I felt that I needed a bit more black so I stamped the heart from the Simply Stated stamp set in three places on the layout.


The second layout started with a gessoed square on the Peony Posy Bunch pattern paper, for iNSD Beth Soler challenged us to create a layout that used paint in bold strokes and that's what I wanted to try. After the gesso had dried, I applied green acrylic paint and then I did not like the way the green paint looked against the brown background. Now what?


I tried all kinds of different things, until I finally came to the conclusion that this wasn't going to work, so I cut the brown background off (yes, I wasted a piece where I could have fussy cut those beautiful peonies, sigh). It still didn't look right, then my friend Anna suggested ripping the edges instead of cutting and that did the trick. I assume (no, I know now) that the rough strokes of the acrylic paint just didn't go well with clear cut, straight edges. Then I went into my paper stash and found the striped background paper by Maggie Holmes (it is from her Open Book collection), I really liked the way both pieces looked together. But it needed more: rough edges call for layers, so I layered several papers behind the center mat.

To make the green photos pop from the green background, I added the bold black stripes as layers behind as well as some of the ephemera pieces. I used the alpha stickers from the sticker sheet to create my title and then journaled directly on the paint using a Sharpie permanent marker pen. I'm really happy how this layout turned out because I really struggled with it for quite a while.

May 6, 2017

iNSD challenge: S T R E T C H your sketch


I am hosting a challenge for (inter) National Scrapbooking Day over on the Scrap Gals Community facebook group today. There is lots to participate: challenges every hour from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM CDT, lots of chit chat and scrapbooking and fun. Come over and join us! I love using sketches as a starting point for my layouts and so I thought it would be fun to use sketches for the challenge. Here is what I came up with!

Challenge: S T R E T C H your sketch


My challenge for you is to take a sketch and use it to create a layout in your Traveler's Notebook! That's all there is to it. Now, I know not everyone is as obsessed with Traveler's Notebooks as I am and that is why I challenge you to stretch your sketch in other ways:
In case you are a very literal scrapbooker stretching a sketch might simply mean to turn the sketch 90° to the left or the right or even flipping it upside down. Stretching your sketch could mean to transfer a rectangular 8.5x11 sketch to a 12x12 format or stretching it out onto a double page layout. It could also mean to use a sketch to create a journaling card or a greeting card. But what do you do if you find the perfect sketch in the perfect size and there is nothing to stretch? Well, then I invite you to stretch your sketch by limiting your supplies: use only journaling cards to create all the elements on the page, for example. Or do not use scissors and a paper trimmer if you are obsessed about straight edges and right angles. Add a challenging stretch to your sketch!


I hope this sounds like fun for you! I was so excited to create my very first Traveler's Notebook layout based on this sketch. And I even managed to create a card based on the same sketch. I filmed a video so if you want to scrap with me, let's do this together! I will be out at my sons' Baseball games today, but I hope to come back later this afternoon and try my hand at one or two of the ideas mentioned above.

Ressources: Where do I find sketches?

There are several ways to find sketches on the internet: pinterest is a great souce, then there are specific sketch websites that publish sketches. Kitclubs also often post sketches for their customers as well as online stores. I have gathered several websites for you to check out. Please note! This is not a complete list, just the sites I know from the top of my head.
I hope you join me in this fun challenge and play along! Please share your creations! I would love to see what you create and cheer you on along the way! There will be a special share thread in the Scrap Gals Community facebook group. But if you share elsewhere, leave a comment here with a link to your video or blogpost or tag me on instagram! Happy scrapping!