December Daily 2017 – Cover & Day 1

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Hello crafty friends! After a brief hiatus from the blogging world I am back with hopefully a daily series for the rest of November and up to Christmas day. I’ve decided to share with you my 2017 December Daily album with close up pictures and tips/tricks on how I created my 2017 album. Hopefully some of the ideas will inspire you to adapt them to your own December Daily.

First of all, if you are not familiar with December Daily I encourage you to check out Ali Edwards website – here for all the details. This will be my 4th year doing DD (December Daily) and my only regret is that I didn’t start earlier, this project has been such a treasure!! For the past years I’ve been using a 6×8 album but I do think that I’ll switch it up for 2018 – stay tuned for more details as December approaches.

So without more delay here is my December Daily 2017 daily recap…

Cover page  – The cover page is always an important design element for me, it sets the tone of the album and I always love to create a bold design. Last year I opted to pair a transparency with a (clean) Starbucks paper bag. I love the love birds design on the bag and knew it would create the bold statement I looking for.

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By using the paperbag I knew that I had to find a way to use the backside as well, which turned to pair beautifully with washi tape and journaling. In order to keep the bag closed together I added stitching with my sewing machine to the top and bottom of the bag, it also added texture to my cover page, which I always love to do in my DD.

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Day 1 – The obvious story choice for this day was the arrival of our elf – Guimauve (marshmallow in French). I used a digital template from Ali’s store and paired it with journaling and a few carefully curated embellishments. I didn’t want to overwhelm the page as it was already busy with pictures and journaling. Using digital template is a great way to take the guess work out of the page design, the elements are already in place, the only decision is which picture to use.

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Most of the supplies used in my 2017 DD are from Ali Edwards and some older embellishments I had in my supplies. Limiting the amount of products really does reduce the amount of time spent creating my pages. I also print my pictures are home with my Canon Pixma MG 7720.

I would love to hear your thoughts about DD, how long have you been doing a DD album, what is your favorite size. Please make sure to let me know if you have any questions regarding my creative process.

Cheers! M

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AE – June Digital Kit

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As the end of the school year is wrapping up we are making plans for our summer activities. We are also enjoying a lot of pool time, but I do find that taking pictures around the pool to be hit or miss, in the case above it what was somewhat of a miss because it was blurry. However when I saw Ali’s June digital kit I instantly loved the digital brush and knew it would be perfect over a picture. So I colored the digital brush, changed the opacity and layered in on my blurry picture. The end effect is so fun!

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Art Journal – embracing imperfection

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Recently Ali Edwards blogged about her venture into art journaling with her family, she was inspired by Liz Lamoreux who also does art journaling. I thought it would be a fun activity for my daughters and I, they love to paint so this was a natural progression from our regular arts and crafts activities.

My daughters range in ages from 5 to 13, my goal for this activity was to have fun and make mistakes. I feel that we strive way too much for perfection, we ask our kids to perform at their full potential and often seek the most out of their performance. But what happens when they make a mistake? I’ve noticed that my girls would often decide that a drawing wasn’t good anymore because of a mistake. I want them to break away from this mentality, I want them to have fun, to make mistakes and see those mistakes as opportunities to find  a way to make the mistake work within their project. We only have one rule when we do art journaling, we are not allowed to start over, we have to make it work, sometimes we love our painting and other times it is a learning opportunity, but I can guarantee that they look forward to this and always have fun.

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We bought our supplies at Walmart, just basic Crayola watercolor paint and art journals, nothing fancy or over the top. I was so happy when everyone wanted to participate in this activity, even my teen was eager to participate. I love that we take this time together, to sit and paint. To encourage each other with our art work and provide moral support when someone encounters a challenge. To guide our activity we often pick a theme, so far we’ve used pastels, circles, hearts and watermelon. No topic is off the table, we will accept any challenge and find a way to interpret it for our art journal. I try to reinforce that perfection is not the end goal with this project, painting, having fun and connecting is the goal, if we create something we love that’s a bonus.

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Ideal Storage – Stamps

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Like the majority of creative people storage of our craft supplies is always a challenge. I think we accumulate supplies faster than we can use them. I have been careful over the years as not to accumulate so many products, I am more selective with my purchases and always keep in mind that my space is very limited. With that in mind, I do like for my storage to be pretty and functional, which at times can be challenging.  You might wonder why I need for my storage solutions to be visually pleasing, well my craft area is in a common place, which guests can see when they visit us, I much prefer to “hide” my creative space within our home decor, this is where pretty and functional storage is a necessity.

Recently the CTK PL creative team was asked to share storage methods for their stamps. You can see the post here, the CT has wonderful storage ideas, definitely an interesting read. I did share these pictures on the CTK blog but I wanted to elaborate a bit on my storage solution.

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I do like to keep my supplies by manufacturer, always have and always will. Because I will remember seeing a certain design from a certain manufacturer and it will make my sorting process more efficient. When sorting my supplies I most often resort to baskets and bins, I do prefer containers that are opaque, this way the content is not visible to guests and visitors in our home. For CTK I selected a wood crate, very functional but still fits with the design of my storage unit. When working on my CT projects and TNs, I like to pull out the crate, it currently holds all my most recent to CTK kits. Having all my CTK in one container really helps me maximize the use of my kits and supplies, once my CT requirements are complete I can use the remainder of the kits with my everyday memory keeping projects. The kits always mix and match beautifully, and work for any project from my TNs to 6×12 layouts.

Hope you have a storage solution that works for your creative space, but if you need ideas make sure to check out the CTK blog for more details.

 

AE – May Digital Kit

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I’m excited to share this project today! I’ve recently started making 6×12 layouts, as opposed 8×11 or even 12×12. I’ve been enjoying this new format, I do really like that it will fit perfectly in my PL albums, as I’ve decided to keep my layouts with my PL album. I don’t make many layouts in a year, maybe a dozen, so it shouldn’t be a problem to keep everything together.

To create this layout I used Ali’s May Digital Kit. I wanted to create a customized background for this layout, I did this by using the 4×6 journaling card and repeating the “time with you” design on a blank canvas. I did adjust the opacity of the words to create a faded design. I love the end result!

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I used various items from past Story kits to compliment the design of this page. I repeated the color scheme through the embellishments. I love the contrast the black pattern paper brings to this layout, the paper actually came from a 4×6 journaling card that I trimmed to size.

I’m so happy I was able to document this story as it is very special to me, I love how my daughter shares the mishaps of her day and looks to me to see if her reaction to the situation was appropriate.

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AE – SBTM June Kit

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Still going strong with my 2018 family PL, it really helps that I get to work with amazing kits like the June Stories by the Month kit from Ali Edwards!!! What a pleasure it is to open this kit every month and see the contents. The value of this kit is amazing, at such a low price with gorgeous card, chipboard accents and a stamp, definitely a must have for my memory keeping. Also this month Ali introduced add-ons for this kit, a fun selection that subscribers can decided to purchased if they want some extra items designed specifically for the kit.  So fun!!!

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Even though the June kit main focus is summer and dad stories I had an easy time to using it for this spread from early April. That’s the beauty of Ali’s kits, they are versatile. They offer a theme to guide with storytelling but they don’t limit you to only those stories.

This is how I adapted the kit for a April spread, I used the chipboard tag with a white card, it was the ideal date card. The card in the top right section I modified using a small phrase sticker that Ali offered in the store.  The dad stories card was ideal for a story of my husband and our middle daughter. The chipboard accents were paired with various picture in the spread. As you can see versatility is essential and these kits do offer that. Already looking forward to next month’s kit!!!

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