Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Taylored Expressions February Studio Challenge

Hello! It's time for the February Taylored Expressions Baker's Dozen Studio Challenge. This is a monthly opportunity for us to share what makes our stamping studios hum. Each month we have a fun, crafty question so we can share our favorites, some tips and tricks, stamping advice and more.

The question for February is:

Recipe for success!  When you sit down to create a card just for fun, for the pure joy of stamping, without any type of assignment or deadline, what steps do you usually take?
Tell us how you get started and take us along on your creative journey.

I changed up the question just a bit. Instead of making a card, I made a layout. One of my goals this year is to scrapbook more, so any chance I get, I'm trying to take it. :) Here are the steps I take when scrapbooking a layout:
1) Decide on a theme or a story that I want to tell. Dan and I celebrated our 13th anniversary earlier this month, so I decided to make a layout commemorating our 13 years.
2) Select photo(s). Since I tend to be the one taking the photos the most, I am often not in them (though I've started using the self-timer and handing off the camera from time to time). Sabrina also loves to take pictures, so this time I had her take a few photos of us on our anniversary.
3) Design my layout. This might be something that I already have in my head or searching for a sketch for inspiration. This is the sketch I chose (from Pagemaps, Feb 2013):
4) Select patterned papers and stamps (if using). I decided to use a sheet of white cardstock for my base and patterned papers from Doodlebug Lovebirds. I don't always use stamps when I make a layout, but this time, I knew that I wanted to use Animals in Love - Elephants.
5) Crop and print photo(s). In this case I only had one photo. Although the photo in the sketch is 6x4, my photo was better as a portrait (orientation), so I cropped it to 3x5. This is also when I edit the photo and clean it up in Photoshop. Once I'm satisfied with my photo(s), I print them.
5) Play! Now is the fun part for me. First, I took out a sheet of white cardstock and sprayed some mists on it, then I set it aside to dry. Next, I stamped and colored the elephants, then I fussy cut them out and set them aside. I also die cut my title and went to my stash and took out some coordinating embellishments. As I play with my layout, I move things around and decide what and what not to use. When I'm reasonable satisfied with the way things look, I start adhering things to my base and adding stitching. Here's the result:

Here are a few detail shots:

I used the Whimsy Alpha to create "years" (I ♥ this font right now!). I also used the Cupid's Arrows dies for my hearts. And finally, here's a look (below) of my elephants:

Please visit the rest of the Baker's Dozen to see their wonderful projects:

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Supplies from the TE store:

Stamps: Animals in Love – Elephants (Taylored Expressions)
Paper: Lovebirds (Doodlebug), Choice Snow White (Taylored Expressions), White (American Crafts), Grey (Bazzill)
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Taylored Dies: Whimsy Alpha, Whimsy #’s, Cupid’s Arrows, Jumbo Heart Border (Taylored Expressions); Markers (Copic), Grey and Cupcake Swiss Dot washi tape (Doodlebug), Mr. Huey’s Cameo and Overdue mists, Wood veneer hearts (Studio Calico); Foam tape, Thread, Sewing machine.