Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Spring Paper Bag Mini Album

Happy Spring! 
The last mini album I posted was a summer themed album, but with the snow just now melting and the birds finally coming back to southern Manitoba, I guess it's still a while till summer.  A lot of people are pining for warm sunny weather and a swap group I belong to is doing spring-themed paper bag albums to help cope with their spring fever. 
Here's my offering:
I used the Garden Tea Party paper collection from DCWV.  It has gorgeous soft images of birds, butterflies and flowers, along with a tea party theme.  The pages are very shabby chic and pretty, with everything stained with tea and dabbed here and there with glitter.  Love it!  It was the perfect choice for my mini.
The album is chunky, measuring 5 1/2" x 8 1/4" and with a 3 1/2" spine.  Lots of space for pockets, tags, photo mats and embellishments.  For the cover I fussy cut the bird and teacup image from the paper and inked the edges, then layered it over a lovely coral-pink dotted paper.  The spine is covered with a coral colored graph paper which I used a Martha Stewart doily border punch on to give it a more delicate look.  The roses and leaves I created with my Cricut using the Close to My Heart Artbooking cartridge which is my latest and greatest tool. 

I covered the spine with a cream-colored rosette ribbon and attached a trio of charms.  The locket charm actually opens and I have put tiny pictures in there.  The feather charm is from the Base and Bling collection from Close to My Heart, and the pearl charm I recycled from some old costume jewellery.

Here's the detail on the front cover.  The butterfly is also cut from the Artbooking cartridge and is done in two layers to add dimension. The leaves are cut from tea stained paper then inked heavily and shaped to give them a more realistic look.

I used lots of ribbon for the tags, a thin chocolate-colored ribbon and a wide, sheer white ribbon with a sheen to it.  It adds texture and movement to the pages.  The book stands up well and I think it's a feast for the eyes.  Especially eyes that have been waiting so long for spring to come!

Inside the front cover is a pretty flip-up with a pocket beneath that conceals a message and a surprise for the recipient. I used a hook and loop closure and embellished it with a flower cut by my Cricut.  I added a pearl center to it, as I did with the other flowers in the album.  An embossed and fussy-cut butterfly rests beside it.

Each page is made out of a paper bag and has two pockets on one side, one vertical and one horizontal which hold a large and a medium tag.  The larger tag can mat a 3" x 5" photo.  The bag also forms a large pocket which opens on the right and has inside a large double-sided photo mat finished with a layered flower. The large mats can hold two standard 4" x 6" photos each. 

The opposite side of each page has another vertical pocket, and a flap which  has a horizontal pocket that holds a large tabbed photo mat.  I have placed only a single tag or mat in most of the pockets to leave plenty of room for photos and memorabilia.

The inside back cover has a long envelope that holds a large decorated journaling tag with a pull-out tab.  The envelope closes with a tie closure and is accented with an antique-looking dragonfly charm. 
And that is pretty much that.  There are still plenty of little surprises in this mini for the recipient to discover.  Can't give away all my secrets!  I'm happy with the result, and looking forward to shipping it off to its new owner.
I'm very excited to be part of this swap, and already looking forward to the next one.  If you would like to join us in our creating and swapping, check out 
Mini Album Scraps here .
Thanks for dropping by to share my creative meander today!  I hope you'll be back again to visit.  I already have some inspiring paper in my stash that is calling to me...

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Golden Anniversary card

A friend came over to play today!  She needed to make a card for a 50th wedding anniversary and needed some inspiration and company.  She had purchased some gorgeous pearlized papers in cream, yellow gold and bronze for the project. 

We started by laying out the papers to see what proportions we wanted to use them in and to choose stamps and embellishments to go with them.  Then we had a look in Close To My Heart's book "Make It From Your Heart" volume II and found a pattern that used a classic layout and was suitable for a formal occasion.  A bit of stamping, embossing and fussy cutting and here's the result:

The hearts are embossed using Versamark ink, gold embossing powder and CTMH's stamp set "Love Life".  We then fussy cut them out and layered them with dimensional adhesive.  The pennants are accented with a single pearl each from the Pearl Opagues collection in Mocha.  The sentiment is stamped from the CTMH set "Card Word Puzzle" in Cocoa pigment ink and heat set.  We used pigment ink because of the glossy surface of the paper we were working with.  The doilies were fussy cut from doily paper tape she had in her stash. 
I think this card is beautiful and the couple who will receive it will be very impressed.  And I got to have a visit/play date with a good friend at the same time.  Just goes to show you that you don't need a lot of time or fuss to create something beautiful any day of the week.  So go grab your adhesive and glue something!
Thanks for stopping by to visit!

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Summertime Mini Album

Hey there!  You're back! 
I've got spring and summer on my mind now and this mini album came out of that longing for warm weather.  I made this mini album to donate to a silent auction fundraiser.  I love to be part of a good cause, and it gave me an excuse to make another mini.  Not that I need an excuse, really.  I made this one with Close To My Heart's Timberline paper collection and embellishments.  I wanted to create lots of space for journaling and photos, so chose to keep the interactive elements simple. 
The cover is made of medium weight chipboard wrapped in my fave paper from this pack--the wood-grain.  I made a closure using a buckle and leaf-patterned duct tape.  It reminded me of backpacks and summer hikes.

The spine is covered with wide burlap ribbon and a tree charm.  There's room on the charm ring for the new owner to add their own charms if they wish.

Inside the front cover is a large pocket with a passport style folder which holds 3 1/2" x 5" photographs or journaling.  The pocket is roomy enough for a souvenir park pass or brochures.

Here's a sample page with two flip outs, one of them plain and one with two pockets that hold tags for journaling or small photos.  Found some great bright orange hemp cord for the tag ties.
These flip-outs measure 3" x 5 3/4" so offer up a lot of additional space in this album.  The main pages are 6" x 6" and with the flaps you can tell a great photo story over the two pages.
I love mini pockets and tags, so added a couple of 3" x 3" pockets in the middle of the album for interest. 
Here's another sample page.  I love the mix of colors and patterns in this paper collection and I'm thinking I'll make another album for myself for this year's camping and hiking photos.
Inside the back cover I placed an angle pocket that holds a large fold-out insert.  There's enough space in this pocket to hold additional memorabilia or photos along with the insert.

The large fold-out I left quite plain to allow enough real estate for 2-4 full sized photos.  Each page in the album has a large pocket that holds a 6" x 6" tabbed photo mat.  I made tabs from patterned paper using my 1" circle punch.  The smaller passport style folder holds an additional two photos and I decorated it to be similar to the cover of the main album
I enjoyed making this simple envelope album.  I think it's cute and interesting but not so crowded that the new owner won't be able to use it.  I think a mini album should be fun and interactive, but still be useable as a photo album. 
 Thanks for stopping in to visit!  If you have questions on how I built this little puppy, feel free to contact me.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Spring Bloom

Hello Everyone!

It's cold, windy and anything but spring here in Manitoba.  A dear friend emailed me some of her gorgeous photos of the cherry trees in bloom in Vancouver.  I didn't know whether to be grateful and inspired or just plain jealous!  So I chose to be inspired and grateful.  I'll be jealous later. 

Here's the results of my inspired frame of mind--a double page layout called Spring Bloom.

Here's what I used: 

I got the basic pattern for the layout from the Close To My Heart book "Imagine".  It's called Subtitles.  I used CTMH's Ariana Paper collection (my favorite this year).  The base paper is a beautiful deep blue called Outdoor Denim.  I cut the butterflies in two layers with my Cricut, using my amazing Artbooking cartridge.  (Hey if you need a new car you can probably cut yourself one with this cartridge, it's so incredibly versatile!)  Same with the words "Spring" and "Bloom".  I shaded the words with my alcohol markers in Sorbet to give them a dipped-in-strawberry-sauce look. 
The letters for April 2014 I had waiting in my stash for just this layout. 

I'm happy with how this turned out, and I hope it inspires you to create your own spring.  It just goes to show you, if you are missing something, you can always go make it out of paper!  Happy scrappin'!

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Cross Canada blog hop

Welcome to our April Blog Hop featuring creations made with our latest Cricut Cartridge, Artbooking.  To purchase any of the items seen in our blog hop today, contact your local consultant to place an order.
We hope that you will take the time to leave comments on our posts, as we love to get feedback from our viewers....whether it was something that you really liked or some new technique that was used that you would like to learn how to do....by leaving us comments, we get to hear what you like, and what you want to see. Thank you… now on to our hop! 

If you have just hopped onto my blog, you can start here as this is a circular hop, but if you want to follow us across Canada then please start at the beginning and join Michelle at  My creations with Michelle .  If you came from Carol's blog Crafty Carol then you are in the right place!

Welcome to my blog!  Today I'm featuring an ongoing project, My Gratitude Album.  I started this little book of blessings in the fall, around Thanksgiving and am adding pages and pictures as I think of them.  I used the Close to My Heart Kraft three-ring binder as the book base. 

The cute little tree on the front of the album is cut from the CTMH Art Philosophy cartridge.  I precut a bunch of tabbed pages and shaped pages using the fabulous Artbooking cartridge.  These are all hole-punched on the Cricut as they're cut, so they slip into the binder with ease and are ready to use.   I used Kraft cardstock to make the tabbed base pages and then a mix of patterned and shaped pages in between. 
Here's just a few of the shaped pages you can make with the Artbooking cartridge.

The cartridge even cuts pocket pages.  And what mini album is complete without pocket pages?

I like to mix papers and embellishments from different paper packs, and in this book I've used a mix of Sarita and Huntington paper packs. I'll be adding pages and accents from other paper packs as the album grows. 
 I tend to build my pages in layers and am inspired by the words and the photos as I add them to the page.  So, on this page for example, I will likely go back and add embellishments and more bits and pieces as the inspiration takes me.

On this page about my dear hubby I cut out the pages and the word "Love" in this beautiful script font using Artbooking. 

You can cut so many cute and functional pages and add-ons with this cartridge.  I love it!  I've made library pockets, speech bubbles and other cool shaped pages, photo frames, butterflies and page overlays for this little album all with the one cartridge.


The Artbooking cartridge also cuts these oh-so-cute file folders which I use a ton of in my traditional layouts and in mini-albums. 
I love this cartridge for the fun and flexible images you can cut with it.  It's always in my Cricut machine making something cool for my projects.  It's one of my best "secret weapons" for crafting now.
Thanks for stopping by on this Cross Canada journey!  Your next stop on the Cross Canada Hop is Brandy at Canadian Scrappers .  If you get lost along the way, you can head to Michelle Stewart's Blog, My Creations with Michelle as she has the complete blog list. 
Thanks for hopping along with us - we hope we were able to inspire you to get creative using some of the designs, products and techniques seen along the way. We hope you will join us again next month when we will be featuring Home Decor projects.  So mark May 15th on your calendars and hop along with us. 

Cheers and happy crafting! 

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Friends Mini Album

Hey there--welcome back!  
My head has been filled with ideas this week--some of them still foggy, some I've already tossed, and some of them are clear and ready to go.  So...no surprise here:  I have another mini to share with you, this time a  smaller one. 

This little album measures 5 1/2" x 7 1/4" but packs in a ton of photos and journaling spots.  I made this one for photos of friends.  These women have been important in my life and shaped how I think and who I have become.  Certainly worth honoring with photos and stories, don't you think?

I used Close to My Heart's "Ivy Lane" paper collection for this project, and it has that just right feel of vintage and modern working together. 

The cover is wrapped in the beautiful floral paper, and the title is from the embellishment collection.  Perfect for an album about these special people.

The spine is finished with the deep purple paper, cut with scalloped edges and wrapped with a sheer ribbon that has a slight sheen to it.  I used a medallion I had in my stash and hung charms from the Close to My Heart jewellery line on it.

The inside cover has a quote I liked about friendship as well as the flowing floral shapes from the coordinating assortment.  The first page is split, and has two different-sized tags, just for interest.  I will be writing a dedication to my friends on the small one, and the large will hold some of my thoughts about my friends.
Each tag is dressed with a little of the paper and has eyelets to hold the hemp ties.

I used only two styles of page for this album; this one with a pocket and pull-out photo mat.

The other style of page has both a flip-up and a flip-down portion. I used magnetic closures on these pages to keep them from flopping around when the book is handled.

Each page has a large pocket to hold a tabbed, double-sided mat where I will put more photos.  The tab will have her name on it.  For each friend I'll have on her page the story of how we met, how long we've been friends, and a little about why she's been important in my life.
The inside back cover has another quote about friendship, this time popped up off the page with dimensional adhesive.  In total this book will hold several pictures of 8 friends along with the stories that go with them.  This little album is still a work in progress, as I go about recording those important thoughts and memories.
I hope you've enjoyed this little walk in my crafting cloud today. I also hope that I've inspired you to scrapbook those important friends.  Thanks for popping in!

Monday, 7 April 2014

Autumn Treasure Mini Album

Hey there everyone!  Here's my latest mini-album adventure.  This one is a bit larger than most of mine, with the covers measuring 7" x 9" x 1 1/2".   I wanted to create an album to house some of my autumn pictures, which happens to be my favorite season.  The Huntington paper collection from Close to My Heart was the perfect paper for an album with this theme.
The cover is wrapped chipboard and has metal corners to accent the front, as well as a metal bookplate on the spine.  I love how the vintage-looking metal works with the earth tones of this paper.  It has a wrap closure made with brads and jewellery cord, accented with wooden and metal beads.  The beads I recycled from a bracelet I found at a thrift store for 50 cents.
I cut the title on my Cricut using the Artbooking (Close to My Heart) and Graphically Speaking cartridges.  I cut them from Desert Sand Cardstock, then painted them with Luminart Golden Opal paint to give them a treasure-like gleam. I did the same for some of my theme words inside the album.

This book only has three base pages bound with a hidden hinge system (see my Gatefold Mini Album tutorials on this blog or Kathy Orta's tutorials for details on how to build those).  Each page has several foldouts and additional features to make this a very interactive album with lots of room for pictures and journaling.

Inside the front cover I chose to do a window feature using a few scraps of barnboard paper I had in my stash.  The closure is made of brads, hemp cord, and a few metal beads from that recycled bracelet.

Each page has flip-up features as well as pockets to maximize interest and space. 
There are three large inserts in the base pages, each double-sided and easily accommodating 4" x 6" photos.  The tabs are covered with patterned paper but you could use alpha stickers or handwrite titles on them depending on your album theme.
This page has two small foldouts on the left which accommodate 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" pictures with room to spare.

Opposite the foldouts is a pocket with a folder in it, holding two more photos, each 3" x 5" in size.

This page has a pretty folded edge with a wooden button accent and contrasting edging.  It houses a double-sided photo mat that will show off 4" x 6" pictures.  I printed my photos for this spot at 3 1/2" x 5" to allow more of the beautiful paper to show, and to leave a little space for journaling.  The pocket flap opposite it is another perfect display place.

The pocket itself holds another large mat (4" x 6" photos fit well) as well as displaying an additional photo on the top inside flap of the pocket.
This is the overleaf of page 2 (I know!  Only two pages into it and already there are at least 20 photo spots!)  I created an angle pocket for the face of page 3 which holds two more photos plus a small one on the outside of the pocket.  The page 2 overleaf (on the left) can display two 4" x 6" photos.

Here's both sides opened up to display another folded pocket edge as well as a pocket on the left and a tiered pocket in the middle section.  A total of 7-9 pictures fit in here plus there's a little bi-fold tag for journaling that tucks into the front of the tiered pocket.
Finally, the last page overleaf has a fold-up photo spot concealing a fold-down beneath it.  Another 5 pictures live here on this page alone.
 The back inside cover is the perfect place for a standout photo of a beautiful prairie sunset.  I double-matted it to show it off even more.
I kept embellishments to a minimum on this album because the pictures tell the story quite nicely on their own, and because I wanted the book to shut without bulging or bowing.  If you wanted to add bulkier embellishments, it would be a simple thing to increase the gussets in your hinge system and to widen the spine a little.
So that's my Autumn Treasure mini-album.  Thanks for stopping by to share it with me, and I hope it has inspired you to go cut up some chipboard and get gluing!  Cheers!