Friday, July 3, 2015


I was hoping for a more relaxed summer this year but so far, its been hectic.  (Last year I traveled for most of the summer and it really screwed with my inner clock....)

I sneak in some time every week now to spark or at least move some stuff around in my scrap room.   I even had a friend over for a couple of hours one Friday and snuck in a 6 hour crop at a store last week.  The only reasoning I'm mentioning it, is because its kind of a big deal for me.  I'm sad over lost time.  I used to have plenty of it and no one to scrap with.  Now I have a group of people and any of them are ready and willing but I have no time.

Anyway, I threw together a bunch of layout bases and have slowly been adding to them.  A piece of flair here, some stitching there.  I have a stack of in progress projects - even a summer mini!!

Here are a couple of layouts that I actually finished this week and I love.

Using some older Echo Park line.  Some of their older stuff is timeless.  I love the patterns.  I've used bits and pieces of this line a couple of times. I'm starting to use up whats left.  
 I love these alpha stickers.  They're puffy stickers from Freckled Fawn.  So cute.  They come in a few colors but black is my go to color right now.  I'm embarrassed to say how many packs I bought.  It's not like I don't have a basket full of AC Thickers to use.
My little cluster of photos.  He was so cute.  My arrow flair (from A Flair for Buttons) points to my favorite one.  I'm not a football fan but this was too cute.  He picked that ball up and knew exactly what to do with it!

I miss this park, the little boy he was turning into, the days of being home with him.  I never wanted to be a Stay at Home mom.  I was forced into it at the time with layoffs so I embraced it.  It lasted until he was 5 and I'm so glad for that time.  I went back to work 3 years ago and now I regret that.  I miss the carefree days in the park and our big backyard.   

Again, an older line of paper from Carta Bella this time.  Usually I don't go with the distressed look but I liked this line.  Simple layout to showcase the photo itself and the memory behind it.  I too this while we sat on the beach in Princess Cays on one of our last big cruises before the kid came along.   I added some flair and the title.  The stamped title is a set from Studio Calico.  They sold a solid set of letters and then a pattern.  This was stamped twice but I *love* the look of it!
'PLAY' flair from A Flair for Buttons again.  I'm so lucky to design with her products!

If you ever want to purchase the set I used or see what she has in her shop, you can click the links and go directly to the set.  If its a generic style (like the arrow) I link you to all the arrow sets.  Happy shopping!

Most of the papers are a year or two old and the pictures are from 2004 and 2009.  Yikes!  I have a secret.  Whenever I go to a crop or retreat, I pack kits.  When I get home, I have leftover kits that I set aside thinking I'll get them done.  Hey, everything is ready to go right?  Nope.  Then something new rolls in and I have to use that.  During a cleaning frenzy, I find those kits and suddenly whats old is new again.  Thats what happened with both of these.  Older paper lines with photos I had ready to scrap.  The only thing new would be the lettering for the two titles.  Everything else is older. 

And last but not least...... coming next week!

I'm SO excited about this!  I love Simple Stories and pretty m much every line they put out.  Having Shelly design flair to go with this line???  Yes Please!
Check back next week for updates or bookmark the {a flair for buttons} blog so you don't miss a thing!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer Mini

Its already that time of the year - Summer.  A few weeks ago, we took the Metrolink down to Oceanside and had lunch on the pier.  Its one of those things we can do on the cheap and my son loves trains.  We ended up having free Metrolink tickets to use and kids are free so.....our only cost was lunch at Ruby's on the pier.

I've had this Simple Stories I {Heart} Summer line laying around.  They just released a new Summer line that is on its way to me as I type this.  I'm super excited to use it but I figured I should crack open the old summer line before the new one arrives.  :)

This is an older Maya Rd chipboard album.  It actually came in a 3 ring binder of the same shape but I left the cover off.  I painted each piece of chipboard with a very light off white acrylic paint and then lined the edges with my trusty fine point Sharpie.  

Then I cut pieces of the paper to 3.25x4.5 to fit just inside the curves of this album.  I used to try and cover these things completely and they never looked right.  I used to throw a lot of unfinished albums out.  This way works better for me.  Depending on the paper line, you can leave the chipboard unfinished and it looks great.  This line needed some grounding and I went with the off white to match the off white of the paper line.

 Glossy Accents - One of my favorite things to do!  It turns paper into an embellishment!
 This flair is from the Simple Stories I {heart} Summer line and it was added to the camera on this page.

 The 'fun' flair is from A Flair For Button Easy shop and is part of the Fun Flair set.

Everything you see is from the Simple Stories I {Heart} Summer line except for the one flair button referenced above.  Happy start of summer!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Documenting Disney

One of the projects I vowed to work on at the retreat last month was my Disney photos.  We've been going on and off for the last 8 years.  We only live 20 minutes from the CA location and whenever we visit my in-laws in Orlando, we stop in there.  It helps that my Father in Law is a Disney employee.  He chose to work there to supplement retirement income when they moved and retired down there.  Works for us!  (Have you SEEN the admission prices these days?)

Anyway, I took both Simple Stories themed lines, 8 years of photos and all the memorabilia I had saved up.  I never planned to document Disney because I don't use the overly themed papers available.  I was thinking I could get a Snapfish photo album done one of these days.  Until Simple Stories released these lines.  OMG how cute are the Disney lines now?  I love that they are themed but also generic.  The colors match everything because they're basic.  I love it. (Say Cheese I and II)

I started the album using a class kit from Layle Koncar.  She used to work for Scenic Route and Basic Grey but now she works for Simple Stories.  Her style is perfect and I love her classes.  Since I couldn't be physically present, it was awesome of the store holding the class to sell extra kits.  I was able to get my hands on one and it was the *perfect* jump start for this album.

 A red American Crafts cloth album altered with the Simple Stories papers and items from the sets.
 Page 1 - Part of the class kit from Layle.  I made a few minor changes.
 Back of page 1.  I like how she altered (cut) the size of this first page down to 3 4x6 slots.  There are small details like this throughout her kit/class that make the album fun.
Page 3 is actually a 12x12 layout.
 Page 4 is another layout designed by Layle.  Super simple but perfect for those one off photos that I don't want to try and fit into the pocket style.
 And here is where I veered off on my own.  I used the same pocket pages that Layle used but my own designs and cards.  Like I said, her pages were the perfect start to this album and they got me in the mood to do this.  Its going to be a major undertaking.  (These first pages are all from my sons first time at DL.  He was barely 9 months.  His favorite ride was the teacups.)
 Or maybe it was the Jungle Cruise.  Nope, the teacups.
 By this point, I was having too much fun mixing and matching.  I wish I had a photo of my table at the crop.  My entire 6 foot table was covered in the product line.

I even snuck in some flair from the A Flair For Buttons Easy shop.  Shelly designed some basic Mouse Words flair.

 The next time we went, he was a little older and could ride more of the big kid rides.  While I love Dumbo, Peter Pan etc, there are some fun rides that have height requirements. (The last time we went, he was finally tall enough for the last ride - Indiana Jones!)
 I love throwing memorabilia in there.  I realize now, that I stuck this in the wrong spot.  The next section was his first trip to Florida.  I think I switched the maps.  :)

A tip for anyone doing this kind of album and its not a new trick that I invented, just something I do.  When all but 1-2 of my photos work for a specific pocket layout, or if I particularly like that pocket layout, I go with it.  I make my photos work.  This last page (and some others above) have a split photo.  I really didn't plan this album out - its strictly on a whim.  So when I printed out photos before the retreat, I went with 4x6's and either cut them down to fit pockets or split them.  It works.  It doesn't disrupt the flow of the photo either.

** all products are from Simple Stories.  I purchased mine at either or  Sticker letters are all Simple Stories.  I'm addicted to their sticker letters and they come in ALL colors.  I buy them whenever there is a coupon and have at least a 6 inch stack of them.  Sadly the local stores to me do not carry these lines so I did order them online.  If your local store carries them, I envy you.  Simple Stories is one of my favorite brands and they are hard to find in my area.***

Friday, May 22, 2015

Prepping for a holiday weekend.....

It will be a quiet one too.  Looking forward to some quiet reflection and maybe some time to do things I've been wanting to do.

I have a few more layouts to share so lets get to it!

Talinn, Estonia

Clean and simple.  I want the detail on the church to stand out.  Papers are from Carta Bella and the flair is from the A Flair for Buttons Etsy shop.  Sets are listed and linked at the bottom of this post.

I used an older Studio Calico kit for this next one.  Been hoarding that paper for a while.  I matched the photo up with the kit while I was packing.  I had no idea what I was going to do but it all came together when I pulled it out of the bag.

 Another clean and simple one.  My son was obsessed with the phone when he was a baby.  I think it was because I was always on it.  My mom and I lived about an hour away from each other and we talked every day, sometimes multiple times a day.  So I was always on the phone.  Like every baby, he tried to put this in his mouth - but he would make little sounds as he did it, like he was trying to talk.

Which leads to this layout.   As he got older, we found a plastic flip phone toy that rang and beeped whenever you pushed the buttons.  Everyone was over for dinner one night and he picked up his little flip phone, dialed someone and then climbed into his kid sized easy chair to have a conversation.  He kept saying 'ya, ya, ya' and when we asked him who he was talking to, he rolled his eyes, got up, shook his head at us and walked upstairs with the phone.  I guess we were interrupting him!

One last one.  (Can you tell those tags were one of my favorite embellishments that weekend!  I kept the pack out and fund a use for at least half of them.

My dad is very handy.  He learned it all from his dad.  My husband, well, he's not so handy.  But his dad was gone a lot and they did things like Boy Scouts instead.  My dad knows how to fix cars and use tools.  He helped his dad build two houses on Long Island.  My son loves to work with Grandpa on special projects like fixing the pull out drawers in the kitchen when they break.  (And it was an excuse to use the "HE" tag.  :))

Flair from the following kits were used on the above layouts. You can purchase them in the AFFB Etsy shop.

ETA:  The shop is closed for a few days while the owner is on vacation.  Here is the link to the shop.  I will post links when the shop re-opens.

A Flair For Buttons Etsy

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Just got home....

from a whirlwind 3 day retreat.  My friend runs a small retreat here in So Cal and 4-5 times a year, we all escape.  It really is the one true time I scrapbook anymore.

If you are local -or- want to join us, the next weekend away is in August.  Check out for more info and to register.

I didn't take much really, just some older Studio Calico, Cocoa Daisy and Scraptastic kits.  I didn't get through all of them but I did make a dent.  I used about half.  I resolved to make what I could with the kits and not try to use every. last. bit.  I start to really burn out on kits if I push myself.  On the other hand, I want to feel like I got what I paid out of them too.  But I end up with half used kits sitting on my shelf and they never get used.  I end up donating or selling off a flat rate box full of old kit contents.

My resolution this time was to use what I could from the kits and move on.  Hand the bits and pieces off to someone else.  I managed to get 3 really good layouts out of the 3 kits I did use so I'm very proud of that.  I feel like I used what I could and I'm in love with the final layouts.

Time to share!

This was an older Studio Calico kit.  I really love the star paper.  I wanted to watercolor some of them in but I like the stark contrast to the black and orange so I left it.  I have some scraps left of this so you may see some watercoloring in the future.

The wood veneer 'RAD' - yeah, I've been holding on to that for a while now.  Just use it right?  It can't be RAD if its hidden in a bag.

And the title.  I stamped that using an exclusive stamp set from Studio Calico.  Their alpha sets are by far my favorite.  These were no exception and I rushed during pre-sale to get these and the number set.  LOVE them.  I stamped them twice.  Once in a color and once in black, just offsetting them so you can see the detail.  

And the flair button.  You can find the biker set in the A Flair For Buttons Etsy store.  Again, something I've been hoarding for a while.  

I'm a huge Echo Park fan.  I buy 80% of their lines so when they released their new boy line - Jack and Jill - I had to have it.  These are my favorite boy colors and go with 90% of my sons closet.  As I rifled through the mile high stack of photos I want to scrap and saw these, they were perfect.

The 'Rad' tag (yes, there was a lot of RAD going on that weekend)is from Amy Tangerine.  The pack of pre-punched tags came in a kit.  I used them on several layouts because they were so versatile.  I will be punching my own tags in the future.  

 More flair from the a Flair for Buttons Etsy shop.  I'm addicted to the flair!

One last one today.  (I have a lot to share!)  Another Studio Calico kit.  I'm horrible about keeping track of the products I use but I believe this is the original kit those tags came in.  I added some items from my stash in like:

Chic Tags: tags, rubbing and stickers.
Amy Tangerine - sticker letters
A Flair For Buttons - Let's Eat flair
Jillibean Soup sticker words 

I'm so glad I got as much done as I did.  I made a dent in some of my supplies and that makes me a happy girl.  I also got to spend some time with friends and relax.  It was my Mother's Day present - a weekend away.  Today we celebrate the real Mother's Day and I'll be running around visiting family.