June 2010

9 posts.

Behind the Scenes: August 2010

Aug cover US

Our August issue has been on newsstands for a week now, so I thought it would be fun to take you on a little behind the scenes tour of the magazine!

Do you see the card Michelle is holding in her editor’s letter photo? That was one of many letterpress cards she made after we got our hands on the QuicKutz L Letterpress. (It was so addicting and fun to play with that she got sucked in and created dozens of equally cute cards.)

After sharing our nicknames on the masthead (page 4), Michelle and Deb have taken to referring to me as B-Hop. (Although Michelle didn’t share this on the masthead, her nickname at a recent charity Wii bowling tournament was Michellvis—maybe I should start calling her that!)

Do you recognize the photo Leah Fung used on her layout on page 10? It’s a favorite of hers from when we photographed her scrap room for the August 2008 issue.

When we photographed the projects in “It’s Party Time” (page 43), the best part was having a slice of the cake once we were finished! It tasted as good as it looks. (Click here for the kid’s birthday projects.)

Two SBE staffers (our web guru, Sarah, and I) make an appearance in Snapshot Savvy, in what is possibly my favorite Snapshot Savvy ever. I love looking at all the travel photos, although they make me want to go on vacation! And Deb’s daughter Anna is in the photo next to us. (Side note: How cool is Tracie Radtke’s underwater photo that appears on that same page?)

What did you think about the August issue?

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More ‘Advent’ Projects

Hey, gang! On p. 66 of the latest issue (August 2010), we feature a couple fo projects made from a blank advent calendar. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to show you all of the crafty goodness, but the beauty of our bog is that I can now publish them here!

SOURCES Calendar: Kaisercraft. Cardstock, paper trim, brads: Bazzill Basics Paper. Patterned paper: October Afternoon (gray dot, orange swirl, pink flower), Making Memories (ledger), Scenic Route Paper Co. (orange stripe). Stickers: Making Memories (numbers, small letters, phrase), BasicGrey (pink letters), EK Success (white words), October Afternoon (date label). Chipboard accents: Heidi Swapp (numbers), Making Memories (butterfly). Wire accent: 7Gypsies. Die cuts: October Afternoon. Buttons: Making Memories. Punch: Martha Stewart Crafts. Design: Irma Gabbard.

Let Me Count the Ways
Irma Gabbard thought the numbered boxes would make great hiding places for notes to her daughter. She swapped photos for numbers on some boxes and stashed extra messages or mini gifts inside!

Sources: Calendar: Kaisercraft. Patterned paper: My Minds Eye. Stickers, brads: Imaginisce. Design: Michelle Rubin.

Vacation Countdown
I thought the calendar would make a great countdown to a trip. I always have a ton of things to do before I travel, so I thought it would make my to-do list more fun if I stashed slips of paper with my tasks on them inside the drawers. It was also a fun way to show off photos from a recent trip to Seattle and Vancouver!

What ideas do you have for the calendar?

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To Journal or Not To Journal

As I’ve mentioned before, the hardest part of scrapbooking for me is the journaling. Whether it’s because I put too much pressure on myself to tell the story just right and end up getting bogged down in word choice and sentence structure, or because sometimes the journaling I want to put on the page feels too personal for a scrapbook that friends will flip through, I almost always struggle with recording the moment in words.

Enough with the pressure! Beginning today, I’m giving myself permission to tell just the basic info of a story, instead of worrying about whether I should use the word “thankful” or “grateful.” And I’m giving myself permission to hide my words, whether on the back of a layout or tucked away in an envelope, so I can preserve the story for me without displaying it to the rest of the world.

And sometimes, even if the story comes easy, I’m going to hide my journaling anyway. Just because I can. (As I did on this page sharing photos of my little brother from our recent trip to London.)

webIMG_2116SOURCES Cardstock: Archivers. Patterned paper: The Girl’s Paperie. Stickers: American Crafts (red), My Little Shoebox (blue blocks), Sandylion Sticker Designs (black).

While telling the story behind the photos is an important part of scrapbooking, don’t let it be something that stresses you out.  Remember: Scrapbooking is supposed to be fun! So focus on scrapping the photos that inspire you, using supplies that you love.

What advice about journaling (or other elements of scrapbooking) do you have for other scrappers?

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Make Snow Cone Accents

web101553665These yummy snow cones appear in our August issue (on page 12). Here’s how you can make your own.

1. Punch a circle from cardstock, then coat the top 3/4″ with a thick layer of dimensional adhesive, like Aleene’s Paper Glaze. Pour chunky crystal glitter on top, then gently press the glitter into the adhesive. Sprinkle another thin layer of glitter, then allow it to dry.

2. Once the adhesive it dry, randomly ink the glitter with alcohol ink.

3. Create a simple cone template with the top the same width as the widest part of the inked glitter. Trace the cone onto patterned paper and trim.

4. Create the illusion of wrapped paper by taking a small piece of the same patterned paper,  adhering it at a random angle near the bottom of the cone,and trimming off the excess.

5. Roll a piece of white printer paper, use adhesive to secure the roll, then attach it to the top of the cone.

SOURCES Cardstock: WorldWin Papers. Patterned paper: BoBunny Press (green, blue), Chatterbox (orange), Making Memories (purple). Ink: Ranger Industries. Punch: Fiskars. Adhesive: Aleene’s Paper Glaze. Glitter: Jo-Ann Stores. Design: Lisa Storms.

Categories: Tutorials | Tags:

Create a Summer Timeline

On pages 18-19 in our August issue, we share a layout by Jennifer Perks that features an interactive timeline.

web101553657Here’s a sneak peek of the page.

Although an interactive timeline might seem complicated, it’s actually pretty simple! Here’s a quick how-to.

webIMG_21171. In your word-processing software, insert four text boxes 12″ wide and 2-1/2″ tall. Fill them with dates, dingbats, and journaling.

webIMG_21182. Print out your text boxes and cut them out. Add color to your dingbats using color pencils, watercolors, or markers.

webIMG_21193. Adhere the text box with journaling to the bottom of your page. Score and fold the top of the corresponding dingbat strip. Adhere it directly above the bottom text box.

web1015406374. Take a circle punch, flip it over so you can see the text throught he circle, and punch out the numbers on the top layer of the timeline to reveal the date underneath. With a pen, draw a  line between the digbats and punched tabs to creat the timeline. If your flap won’t lay flat, add a magnetic snap or two to help keep it closed.

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Go Back to Basics

Welcome to week two of sharing pages featuring 4×6″ photos. As I shared last week, using 4×6″ photos has always been a bit of a challenge for me, even though they are so convenient to print! At the last crop I attended, I not only challenged myself to use 4×6″ prints, but also challenged myself to make pages without the use of embellishments. (This was not entirely by choice—I’d left almost all of my embellishments at home, except for my tub of letter stickers and a handful of accents I’d tossed in a canvas bag on my way out the door.)


SOURCES Patterned paper: October Afternoon. Stickers: BasicGrey (“tower bridge”), Studio Calico (“remember when”). Pen: Zig Writer by EK Success.

For this page, I kept things simple, using only three patterns of paper (I’m apparently now hooked on grid paper!), letter stickers, a pen, and a single sticker as embellishment. Due to limited supplies available, I didn’t spend hours agonizing over the perfect accent. I saw one I liked, thought “That will work!” and stuck it on the paper. Is this the most well-designed, brilliant, or detailed page in the history of scrapbooking? Definitely not. But I love it. How could I not? It shows off two of my favorite photos, includes some cute patterned paper, and preserves a memory. And that is more important than any embellishment will ever be.

With that said, I do love embellishments! But every once in awhile it’s very freeing to design without them and to keep the focus of the page on your photos and the story they help tell. So if you’re an embellishment-aholic, this week I challenge you to design a page with minimal accents. And if you’re usually a simple scrapbooker, this week challenge yourself to go crazy with embellishments! Stepping outside your scrapping comfort zone can have great results. (And if it does, please share them in our gallery and then leave me a link to your page!)

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Free Printable Journaling Cards

In our August 2010 issue (on newsstands June 22), we debuted a scrap-as-you-go travel album by Sande Krieger. The album makes recording your trip easy with printable travel-theme journaling cards. We’re offering downloads of the cards for free. Click the link below to get them all! And, if you haven’t already, pick up the latest issue for album instructions.

Download the nine journaling cards here for free!

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Make It a Challenge

For whatever reason, I’ve always found scrapping 4×6″ photos to be a challenge. If you’ve been reading the SBE staff blog for awhile, you might recall that I frequently challenge myself to scrap using only 4×6″ photos. This weekend I embraced that challenge again, and ended up with a few pages that I actually really like.


SOURCES Patterned paper: Little Yellow Bicycle (blue), Studio Calico (grid). Stickers: AdornIt–Carolee’s Creations (“S”), Little Yellow Bicycle (“trafalgar,” “qua,” “e”), Making Memories (“r”), Studio Calico (red fabric). Pen: Zig Writer by EK Success.

This page feautres a few of my favorite photos from a recent trip to London. They’re not all true 4×6″s—the photo processor I use has the option to print “true digital” size rather than cropping the image, so the prints end up being about 3-1/2×5″.

One thing I learned while working on this page: Grid paper is fun! Lately I’ve been inspired by a couple pages that are in our December 2010 issue to try journaling directly on the background paper, and this grid paper made it easy for me to actually write in straight lines. I still don’t love my handwriting, but I do love occasionally including that part of myself on layouts.

Another tip? If you run out of letter stickers mid-title, don’t be afraid to mix ‘em up.

What are your scrapbooking challenges?

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Inspired by Shoes

A couple weeks ago, I bought a new pair of sandals and ever since then I’ve been obsessed with turning the accents on them into an embellishment.

(Aren’t they cute?)

Last night I decided it was time to experiment. Turns out, it’s really easy!


1. Choose double-sided patterned paper and punch four circles from it. (If you don’t have a circle punch, do what I did last night—just trace around a drinking glass and cut out with scissors.)

2. Sprinkle a little bit of water onto each circle to make it easier to bend the paper.

3. Gently fold each circle in half, and then in half again. You don’t want to crease the paper—instead curve it to give the folds dimension.

4. Set the folded pieces somewhere to dry. As they dry, they will stick in the shape you folded them in. You can either hold the accents in that shape as they dry or stick a pencil or pen in one of the folds to hold everything in place. (I ended up with a couple accents that dried really quickly and a couple that took longer. Since I was getting impatient waiting for them to dry, I used my blow dryer on a low, warm setting to help them along.)

5. Once the accents are dry, you can start playing! I did reinforce the shape with an adhesive dot holding down some of the folds.

I used my accents to create a really quick flower for a thinking-of-you card.


SOURCES Cardstock: Archivers. Patterned paper: October Afternoon. Rub-ons: Black River Designs. Brad: BoBunny Press.

Have you ever been inspired to turn a non-scrapbooking accent into an embellishment for your projects?

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