Category Archives: Uncategorized

Scrapbooking Mania – Part 1

When you have a busy life like mine, and busy friends like mine, you have to schedule your time together. This Saturday I will be scrapbooking all day with my 2 BFFs and I have been waiting for this day to happen for years!!! It’s very rare for me to get the opportunity to be crafty with others and I am super, mega, captain crazy, excited to be getting to hang with my friends and scrapbook!!!!!!

Mini Album from ScrappyShackLori on Flickr

Mini Album from ScrappyShackLori on Flickr

I am a teacher by trade and I tend to find that I am a teacher in other aspects of my life as well. I have tried to teach my friend Suzanne to knit and scrapbook previously and it hasn’t really stuck but now that she is expecting baby #2 she’s a lot more willing to learn. Cathy hasn’t really tried to scrapbook before but she is a very eager student and has been preparing diligently for our little get-together for weeks.

Just in case you are new to scrapbooking too, or you’ve thought about starting and were generally overwhelmed, I have a few helpful hints that I have passed along to my friends as well.

St. Thomas V.I. by serdir on Flickr

St. Thomas V.I. by serdir on Flickr

1.  Take Pictures!!!!

  • Once you’ve taken pictures, be sure to download them on to your computer ASAP
  • Even if you can’t edit (crop, remove red-eye, ect.) right away, label pictures so that you can remember what you were taking a picture of
  • Select pictures
  • Choose the pictures you would like to put into your scrapbook
  • You don’t have to do this all at once; you can choose pictures that go with a certain date range, event, or theme
  • Be sure to get at least a few pictures that are not the standard 4×6 size so that you can have a focal picture for a page or get wallets so that you can do a “photo booth” effect on your page
  • Think about trying out different filters, black & white, or crops; if you don’t end up using those photos in your scrapbook you may find another place to use them in the future

2.  Plan pages 1

  • Decide generally which pictures will be able to go on a page together
  • Think about whether or not a two-page spread would work for your topic/event
  • Keep photos separated based on page in either an envelope, photo organizer, or even in your refill 12×12 packages. This will be helpful in case you have to stop here; you’ll have it organized for when you pick it up again later .  ***Don’t store photos in a zip lock bag—it is not archival safe
Die Cuts with a View from scrapbook.com

Die Cuts with a View from scrapbook.com

3.  Plan pages 2

  • Select paper for layouts
  • Look at the photos you choose for a certain page. If there is a color that someone is wearing, choose a paper that will complement the photo. If there is a theme like camping, choose papers that have outdoor themes or colors.
  • Select several papers as background possibilities so that if you come back later you can choose something different if you’ve changed your mind OR so that you can cut one of the background papers to use as a photo mat, journaling, or a title
  • If you have other paper, stickers, or anything else you think will go well on the page put that aside for the layout also.
  • You can keep the photos, paper, stickers, etc. in your refill plastic so that if you step away for a while it’s all ready when you are.

In my next post I’ll show you more about laying out pages and also discuss supplies for scrapbooking. Did I mention that I am super excited?

*P.S. I’m still working on the taking pictures thing and I promise that I’ll have some of my own pix really soon!

A Super Cool Blog

Hopscotch House Quilt by Tree Fall

Hopscotch House Quilt by Tree Fall

As I mentioned before I’m a high school social studies teacher. I teach US History (my favorite) and Psychology. In Psychology we talk a lot about the influence our parents have in our lives by modeling behaviors and the values they deem important.

I think of my blog as a child—possibly an infant—who is just learning its way in the world. My baby blog looks to the established adult blogs for guidance. What balance of crafts should I be talking about? How much should I talk about my personal life? Are politics off limits? Would it be wrong to proclaim my everlasting love of Colin Firth?

Pillow by Tree Fall

Pillow by Tree Fall

One of the blogs that I love and know that I can always look to as an example of general awesomeness is Tree Fall. Manda lives in the UK and is big into sewing and quilting. I love her style of crafts but I also love her writing. She good about giving the readers a flavor of her life without giving too much info to induce stalking but she does talk about some pretty heavy stuff. If you haven’t read her blog before than I suggest you go back about a year or so. All I can say is that you know you’re hooked when you’re checking a blog daily (sometimes more than daily) to see how someone is doing.

Patchwork Croc by Tree Fall

Patchwork Croc by Tree Fall

Anyway, if you like pretty sewing, great pictures, and inspiring writing than check out Tree Fall and add it to your blog reading to do list.

Crafting for Kiddies

My husband and I do not have kids yet but our close friends do have children. There’s Thomas who is going to be 2 in June and Mackenzie who is going to be 3 in May. Mackenzie’s parents have just found out that they are going to be having a boy this coming July. I like to make stuff for them since their parents aren’t too crafty and I just think of handmade things as being more meaningful.

Since I know I will be making something for Mackenzie’s, Thomas’, and boy baby-to-be’s birthdays AND I know that procrastination is like a religion for me I have decided that I need to get started ASAP with planning and hopefully making their gifts.

ABC Pillow from marthastewart.com

ABC Pillow from marthastewart.com

Today as I was watching an episode of Martha Stewart Crafts I saw what I need to make for Mackenzie’s 3rd birthday- an ABC Pillow. It looks easy to make and I love that it can be educational. The letters can be buttoned on and off to make all kinds of words. On the show Martha Stewart talked about making the whole alphabet and creating a little pouch to put the extra letters in inside the pillow case.

I’m definitely excited about making this project and I think I will certainly file it away to make when my husband and I eventually do have kids of our own.

I Want to Make This!

Cute as a Button Purse (by pixeldust on Craftster)

Cute as a Button Purse (by pixeldust on Craftster) via Craftzine

This is one of the coolest things that I have seen in a while! I love the idea of mosaics in fabric, glass, ceramics—what ever—but the idea of buttons seems a little more whimsical.

bag1wg5

I have a collection of buttons that I am just starting (because everyone needs a collection of buttons!). I think that this project will possibly change my focus on acquiring unique buttons to possibly trying to collect into color families!

Happy Inauguration Day!

Crochet Obama from Crochet Mania

Crochet Obama from Crochet Mania

As I’m still finding my blogging voice I’m not sure how political I want to get. I do however want to say that as a high school social studies teacher the historian in me is in awe of the election and now inauguration of Barack Obama. It’s amazing, inspiring, and just plain awesome. In honor of the occasion, how about some Obama craftiness?

Obama Afghan by Love to Read

Obama Afghan by Love to Read

You can find a lot of Obama knitting and crochet projects on Ravelry as I did with the Crochet Obama and Obama Afghan. I also found a whole quilt show of Obama quilts on flickr.

Inauguration Quilt Exhibition (Evanston Public Library)

Inauguration Quilt Exhibition (Evanston Public Library)

Anyway, I hope that you enjoy the craftiness and I look forward to us making even more history!

Fingerless Gloves

Daisy Stitch Hand Warmers from Purl Bee

Daisy Stitch Hand Warmers from Purl Bee

Sorry for the lack of posts this past week! I’m not sure if I mentioned previously but I’m a teacher and man, sometimes I get so bogged down. At some other time I’ll fill you in on the wonders of high school social studies. All I can say for now is 6 meetings in 3 days—craziness!!!!

Motley Mitts from Interweave Knitts (Pipp from Flickr)

Motley Mitts from Interweave Knitts (Pipp from Flickr)

Now, to the work at hand! I am going to make a pair of fingerless gloves for both of my sister-in-laws. Okay, great, sounds easy, right? No!!!! There are so many patterns available and well, as I mentioned before, I still have a ways to go with my knitting skills.

Greenaway Gloves from Purl Bee

Greenaway Gloves from Purl Bee

Here’s what I’m considering when making my choice:

· What can I be successful in knitting? I don’t want to get in over my head or begin throwing yarn and needles all around the room.

· What would my sister-in-laws like the most and actually use?

· Which pattern would work well with the yarn I already have in my stash?

Toasty (left) and Toast (Right) from A Friend to Knit With

Toasty (left) and Toast (Right) from A Friend to Knit With

The choices are from top to bottom:

· Daisy Stitch Hand Warmers from Purl Bee: I really like these but I’m not sure that I can do them!!!

· Motley Mitts from Interweave Knits: I like these and I think I have the perfect yarn for them!

· Greenway Fingerless Gloves from Purl Bee: I like the simplicity of these as well as the detailing by the fingers.

· Toast and Toasty from A Friend to Knit With: These look doable as well but they are a bit longer than the others. These may be suitable for one sister      and not the other.

· Blue Diamond Fingerless Mitts from elann.com: These are so pretty but again, I fear my skill level is not there yet!


Blue Diamond Fingerless Mitts from elann.com

Blue Diamond Fingerless Mitts from elann.com

The choice: Motley Mitts for Laura, Toast or Toasty for Jennifer. Who knew that deciding what to knit was such a huge decision! I promise to include updates as I go along!

Tutorial Tuesday

Purl Frog made by losabia

Purl Frog made by losabia

It is my intention to eventually have tutorials of things that I make to show off, and to of course show them off on Tuesdays because I like having post titles with alliteration! Honestly, who wouldn’t?

Since I don’t really have any tutorials to speak of yet, I figure that for the time being I’ll feature some other people’s nifty tutorials which can be an inspiration to both you and me!!!

This is a tutorial that I have actually used previously. Now, a good blogger would at the very least have a picture of the finished product—sadly I have not reached that point yet. I tend to make things at the last minute and then forget to take a picture before I give my creation away.

Another froggy!  By krommama

Another froggy! By krommama

Anyway…the tutorial—the Purl Frog. This is the cutest thing and is super simple to make and very easy to customize. I have plans to make more in the future and this time I promise to take a picture and of course post it here!!! While you wait for me to get my act together, check out the flickr group for all kinds of great pictures of cute little Purl Frogs!!!