Hi Everyone! This is Amy Parker, and I have for you my first CP Tutorial! Yeah! I was set to do a Simply Crate this time, and I gotta admit, I was pretty nervous about it. I do simple layouts every now and then, but truly they are pretty scarce and most of the time, not easy for me to do. I'm one of those layer upon layer upon layer and super-de-duper cluster embellishment kind of scrappers. LOL! So, this for me was a bit of a challenge.
But, I have to say, that this challenge prompted me to make probably one of my most loved layouts ever. And I love it when a challenge surprises you like that! Even though this layout has so much less on it than I normally have, it doesn't feel at all lacking to me. Definitely changed my opinion of simplicity.
On this layout, I used only three kinds of Crate Products: pattern paper, stickers and chipboard. Very easy to recreate because we all have these kinds of products in our scrappin stash! And to make it even easier, I've written up some instructions on how to make the layout here. There are a couple things on this layout that I had never done before and really wanted to give a try: both the banner/clothesline and the heart confetti. This layout certainly won't be the last that I do these two things on because they were so much fun! I kept the design pretty simple, pretty much just straight across the page with a toss of hearts on one side. (And honestly, one of the best things about this is that it's almost completely made with just scraps of paper! Bonus!) I hope you enjoy it, and really hope I have inspired you to give a few of the things I did on this layout a try!
Ok, so here we go!! To start I used a neutral soft paper for my background (Farmhouse "Homemade"), and trimmed the selvage edge off the bottom. Save this cause we'll be using it soon! The photo I used here is a 5 x 7 landscape, and I chose this bigger size in order to make it more of a focus, and so the page didn't feel like it had huge amounts of space.
Next, I decided what papers I wanted to use for my banner/clotheline. I wanted papers that would accent my photo and not overwhelm it, inevitably drawing attention away from my photograph. The subject of my photo played into the patterns that I chose as well. I wanted them to mimic the photo sort of. Soft colors match little Aurelia (my daughter), a floral paper to go with her outfit, and also, a graphic black to play off her very modern car seat. I hope that all makes sense. Laugh! Either way, I definitely made sure the color scheme on my layout matched, or complimented my photograph. The size of these little banners here are about 2.5" long by 1.5" wide.
Once I got all the banners cut out (6 of them), I punched them with my two punches (solid shape & confetti). I chose hearts for my punches, but really you could use anything you have, and they don't even have to match like mine. You could do a flower for the bigger punch, and maybe a smaller butterfly multiple punch! That would be real cute!
After that, I started playing around with a few pieces of selvage edges from some of the patterned papers. The first selvage edge I cut off was from Farmhouse "Handpicked". I used a piar of decorative scissors for this, mini scallop to be exact, and when I trimmed, I did it about an 1/8" above the trim line. This gives it just a hint of the paper's other pattern at the top of the strip. Then I trimmed it a little further (I removed almost all the excess white off the edge, just leaving a teensy little line of white at the edge of the pink wavy border in order to give it definition). Next, I grabbed the selvage edge from the Random "Textile" paper and completely trimmed off the white excess, just leaving the scalloped grey with red polka dot paper.
Now we are ready to adhere our photo! I lined mine up at the top of the banner pieces, making sure that my photo was parallel to the sides of my layout, ensuring that it's sitting straight. Next, I stuck down the two trimmed selvage edges as shown.
Note: if you plan on using your sewing machine on any part of your layout, I would recommend using a wet glue, instead of a roller or dots. Wet glue tends to not gum up your needle like rollers and dots do, but you definitely have to make sure that you wait til your glue has 100% dried, or else you could really end up messing up your stitches. Trust me on this! I have learned through experience and totally making this mistake on layouts before and ruined them! Not real fun :P
There are two more strips of paper we will be using: the selvage edge from the very beginning (Farmhouse "Homemade"), and also, a 1/4" strip cut freehand from Peppermint's "Ski Lodge". I freehand cut this one because I wanted it to look a little more handmade and wonky. Now I didn't stray on purpose, I seriously tried to cut as straight as possible, but because I wasn't following a line I ended up bowing my strip of paper quite a bit! Embarrassing, yes, but definitely very real. :D These two strips of paper will be adhered to the top and bottom of the page as shown. I especially like the strip at the bottom, as it is the exact same pattern as the background paper, except for it's wavy border and cute little green accent dots! Love those!
Once all these things you have adhered have dried completely, then you can start stitching! It's totally up to you as to whether you even want to do this, or if you would like to do it by hand, as that is a possibility too. Your choice, just depends on the look you are going for. I chose to use my machine because it's quick, precise and gives it a clean flat finish, while my hand stitching can be quite wonky and bulky. I did a zigzag through the paper strips below the photo, and straight stitches through the strips at the top and bottom of the page. Now remember, you glued these things down, so your stitching is really just for decoration, so going all the way from one end to the other of your papers isn't really necessary. You are just wanting to add this accent for more detail. The clothesline takes a little more finesse though. I started my stitching a little bit away from my first banner, and very slowly with my machine, I started to bow my line, trying to make the stitching actually look like a clothesline, making sure that I bow back up with my line to finish about the same place on the other side.
Normally, with all my stitching, I pull my threads through the back of the layout and trip knoto them to make sure they are secure, and I did this here with all but my clotheline thread. Instead, I pulled that thread to the front of my layout, still triple knotting, but making sure that my strings hung in the front now. Once they are tied, then you can stick down your chipboard clothes pins from the Farmhouse collection! So cute! After that, you just snip your strings to your desired length.
The rest of your layout comes together pretty quick after that. Next thing you can do is stick down your other chipboard accents, and apply your stickers and title. I used smaller letters for my title because, again, I wanted my photo to stand out, and didn't want big letters to distract from it.
Once you have all your chipboard in place, you can then spread out your confetti! I used the little pieces that came out with my punches, plus a few extras to accent and help tie the layout together. One extra detail I added to these hearts, just to make them a little more special, is the stitching on the larger hearts. Just one more little way to add pretty texture to your pages. The very last thing to do is to add your journaling! And your completely done!
I really hope you enjoyed my step by step tutorial, and little tid-bits on my thought process when creating a page! (And I hope it wasn't too long for ya either!) - Amy Parker