Friday, November 26, 2010

Mia, the Slice Machine

The secret to the complicated flower and letter cut-outs I use for my cards? Why, Mia of course! Mia, the slice machine, is an innovative electronic product of Making Memories which cuts shapes and letters that are programmed in a Design Card. A design card looks exactly like an SD Memory Card but is formatted exclusively for the Slice Machine. She's very user-friendly, only 6 steps to follow actually.

1. Place your paper over your glass mat which comes with your slice.
2. Place your slice machine over your paper.
3. Insert the design card into the card slot and turn the machine on.
4. Choose a design.
5. Choose a size for your cut-out.
6. Press the "start" button and voila! You now have your cut-out!

I got Mia as a second-hand buy. She used to be owned by a famous actress/host here in the Philippines who decided to upgrade to a much more expensive and versatile cutting tool. She was just so pretty I couldn't resist it. Ron and I definitely had no budget for her. So I put into good use my persuading skills and asked my dearest Lola (Grandma) to buy her for me! I just love my Lola. hehe I don't have pictures of Mia yet but here are pictures of her identical twin sister which I got from the internet..

MM Slice Machine with charger, cutting mat, design cards,
glue, glue applicator, pamphlet and blades

And here's what she can cut!

Holiday Words and Expressions Design Card

Handwritten Design Card

Home Sweet Home Design Card

Think Pink Design Card

Now do you understand why I say she and I will be best friends for a very long time? hehe Thanks for looking!

Hello Card

I'm really getting addicted to making cards these days. Almost every night, before I do my rituals for bedtime, I try to make at least one card to add to my collection and of course for practice. I find them a lot easier to do since each one is only around 1/8th the size of a 12x12 scrapbook layout which means less materials used and faster completion time. PLUS, they're much more economical to make for practice. You won't need to use acid-free or lignin-free paper and all that stuff since cards are not really meant to last as long as you would want scrapbook layouts to. The rule is, if it's with pictures and you want it to be good as new when you show your layouts to your children and your children's children, use acid-free or lignin-free materials to avoid discoloration and preserve your photos better. But if it's just cards, then there's really no need for that right? So you get to have more freedom in choosing your materials and they won't cost you as much as acid-free stuff do. You can even use cheap materials like cartolina or recycled paper if you want. All it takes is a dab of creativity!

Kindly double-click the image to understand the doodles. hehe I used All About Scrapbooking papers which are available in National Bookstore for this card. They're a bit cheaper than other product lines like Webster's Pages or Basic Grey or Bo Bunny and other imported brands. The main reason is that All About Scrapbooking is actually a local product of Fistar Distributors Corp. Of course, I would be lying if I say they have the same quality as the imported ones (the designs are really cute!) but then if you're still practicing and want to have it more affordable, All About Scrapbooking would definitely be the way to go.

To make this even more affordable, I used plain white cartolina as the card base and only stuck the patterned paper to design the front. hehe I also tried designing the envelop to match it with the card by using just a couple of cut-outs from Mia, my Slice Machine.

I also tried creating dimension by highlighting some parts of the word "hello" with dotted lines to create a bit of depth.

So what do you think? Thanks for dropping by and have a happy day!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Lesson 4: Photos: Sorted and Scrapbooked

Since photos are obviously essential to any scrapbook layout, anybody's craft life would be so much easier if they are kept organized or sorted. Hmm.. Unfortunately, that's easier said than done. Especially for a lazy and untidy girl like me! I've even adopted the motto, "Creative minds are rarely tidy". haha But yes, I know I need to get organized if I want to avoid spending two whole hours looking for my scissors!

So, moving on..

Lesson 4 talks about sorting photos and deciding how and where you would want to store them. As to where to store them, you would have to decide between keeping them in a photo album in which the whole family can go through and appreciate them until you'll have time to use them one by one in your layouts OR you can store them in boxes. For storage, you can choose any of the following ways:

- Chronologically
- By Theme
- By Person or Group
- By Portrait
- By Event

As you know, I'm kind of concentrating on cards for the moment so I haven't really gotten around to getting our pictures printed, let alone sorted. hehe

Speaking of organizing, here are a few pictures of taking the task to the next level!

I hope you found this lesson helpful! Thanks for dropping by!

Lesson 3: Essential Scrapbook Supplies

Sorry for doing such a lousy job of keeping up with my scrapbooking lessons. I know it's been days since I posted Lesson 2. No excuses, just plain laziness and procrastination. hehe So anyway, Lesson 3 gives a list of the scrapbook supplies you will need. It's really helpful especially if you're new and don't know where to start. There's the "Essentials" which is a list of what you SHOULD have to make the most out of your creativity and then there's the "Upgrades" which is a list of what you WOULD WANT to have. hehe

Erm.. It's kind of a really long lesson and lists, so would you mind very much if I'll just give you the links? Please bare with me as I'm still trying to finish all my deadlines at work and still keep this blog updated (though I enjoy blogging much more *wink*). Just this once, okay? You'll find the lesson very helpful and I think you'd want to get this lesson in its full version anyway.

To view and print the "Essentials" list, click here.
To view and print the "Upgrades" list, click here.

See also the tutorial which gives a comprehensive discussion on the items in both lists. It can help you decide in choosing your supplies. Sorry, gotta run. Need to finish my paperworks before I have to go on official travel to Batangas in the morning. Have a happy day!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Everyday Cards

Taking a break from my Christmas Card craze, I tried making everyday cards last night. And I'm actually quite happy with what I came up with. hehe (I-love-my-own mode: ON) Got insipirations from a Creating Keepsakes magazine. Unfortunately, I was only able to finish two before Ron, my husband, finally gave up on trying to save his digital garden from zombies and said to call it a night since it was already 1AM. I tried some of my stamps on the cards and used Mia, my slice machine, too. Oh I just LOVE my slice machine! Makes creativity all the more creative! hehe I know I promised to blog about her. But forgetful old me keeps on forgetting to take pictures. Maybe I can come up with something tomorrow.. SO, back to my everyday cards. Well, let me know what you think.

Enjoy your day!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Christmas Card: Attempt Nos. 2-5

Well. I'm doing such a bad job at keeping this blog updated. Tsk, tsk. Pretty disappointed with myself actually. SO, to make it up to anyone who's stumbled upon my blog, I'm sharing with you images of the Christmas cards I've made over the weekend. Weeks ago, I came up with this goal to practice crafting by making Christmas cards for relatives. My progress with that goal is the only thing I'm proud of as of the moment. hehe

Sorry about the lousy picture-taking skills. hehe Hopefully, when Hubbs and I have moved to our own house, I'll have more room to take better pictures.

Hmm.. A few more updates. I'm taking an actual scrapbooking class on December 4 at Memory Lane. I'm really excited about it and I hope to learn lots of new stuff! I've also found a support group for all my scrapbooking needs! I joined the scrapbook-exchange club. I know, I know, I'm getting quite addicted to this. I'm doing quite well actually. haha Oh and I've bought a new toy!!! I got a Slice Machine! I'll introduce you to Mia, my slice machine and future best friend in the art of crafting, in another post. Right now, I've got to get back to my real job (the one that puts food on my table). hehe Thanks for dropping by!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lesson 2: Creating Your First Layout

I finally got my second lesson! Yehey! Actually, I resubscribed. I still don't know what ever happened to my first subscription..

Lesson 2 talks about how to create your first layout. I distinctly remember feeling overwhelmed with all the layouts I've seen in the internet and I felt so incompetent. haha They're really, really good. But this lesson has shown me that it doesn't have to be that complicated. A layout can only be as complicated as how you want it to be. You can actually see a video they've prepared to demonstrate how unthreatening it can be! It's a must see, I tell you. View it here.

So these are the things you have to consider when creating your layout:

  1. Pictures - As mentioned in the first lesson, you don't have to get ALL of your pictures of an event. You simply have to choose one or two that best represent it.
  2. Theme or Concept - You can refer to your pictures for this one. See what theme would be best. It can be anything like Christmas, beach, summer, reunion, etc.
  3. Color Scheme - Pick the colors, papers and patterns which will go best with the theme you have chosen. A lot of papers actually come in packs with each pack representing a theme. You might want to consider getting one of those if you're just starting. Just to lessen the confusion. *wink* Like for my Christmas cards, I got a Christmas-themed pack of 12 papers (plain and patterned) that all look very Christmasy and actually go well when partnered with each other.
  4. Embellishments - Again, refer to your photos for this one and think about what types of embellishments you might want to use to bring more life to your layouts. You can use buttons, ribbons, chipboards, die-cuts, flowers, etc. Try to choose those which will also go with your theme and color scheme.
  5. Unity - Of course, the most challenging part would be bringing them all together. Scour the net for inspirations on how you might want to get them all in your cardstock base. A lot of books that give ideas for layout sketches or floorplans are also available in scrapbooking shops.
So this is my first (very first!) layout.. Now, be kind, I'm new. hehe

For pictures, I chose two of my adorable baby cousin Andrea. Theme of course is Baby Girl. Colors are pink, violet, yellow and other pastel shades. For embellishments, I chose corner stickers for the pictures, a flower, some die-cuts and stamped words and images. I didn't use any ribbons here. What look like ribbons are actually just paper cutouts. Cool, huh?

I still don't have any die-cuts or even templates of letters so I did her name by hand. Well, when push comes to shove, you gotta be creative. hehe I practiced with a pencil in my sketchpad first before doing it in a cardstock using a marker. Can't afford to waste cardstock!

The lines and heart under her name are actually stamped images. I used magenta and violet inkpads.

I did a little journaling too! hehe Just to put some words to the pictures.

So that's my first layout. I really enjoyed doing this and I hope to make many, many more layouts in the future! hehe

I hope you got something out of this post though I think my excitement might have made some of the things I said incomprehensible to some. hehe Just remember that it will be YOUR layout. Everything in books and the internet are just guides. In the end, it will be your creativity that you have to exercise. Make it yours. You can't go wrong. *wink*

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Christmas Cards: Attempt No. 1

After my first visit to Ms. Vivian's Lasting Impression, I got so excited I just had to try my stuff out right away! The great thing about traditional scrapbooking compared to digital is the dimension you can create with papers, embellishments, glitter, and of course, mounting tape!

So for my first card.. Drum roll please.. Ta-da!!

I just got a plain silver cardstock for the base and used 2 patterned cardstock and another 2 in red and green. The 3 Christmas trees are embossed die-cuts I bought at Papemelroti about a week ago. I embellished them with gem stickers which I had since forever but never really gotten around to using.

I mounted them to frames made out of red and green cardstocks and mounted them again to my card. That created the dimension I wanted. I also got a vellum image of the phrase "Merry Christmas" and also mounted that to my card. It's a pretty simple one but I'm just happy I came up with the design. Took me a long time to imagine it. hehe

Well.. let me know what you think if you feel like it. Have a happy day!

Lasting Impression

Okay, honestly, I don't know what happened to my e-classes. I'ts been almost a week since my first lesson and up 'till now, I haven't received my second! Hehe I'll try to check their site for a solution to this. SO.. while I haven't gotten around to doing that, I'll share about my meeting with Ms. Vivian instead! Yep, met her, visited her store and bought my first loot!

Actually, I though Hubbs and I were visiting her house where her stuff would be. I never really thought Ms. Vivian had as large a collection as she apparently did. And what I thought was a house, was actually a pretty big store. And oh the supplies she has! Believe it or not, I spent 3 full hours just looking through her stuff and I wasn't even able to check everything out! The store was absolutely gorgeous.. and so complete. She had everything: inks, dies, die-cutters, stamps (cling, clear and rubber!), cardstock (stacks and stacks of cardstock!), albums and SO much more! They also sell online. You can check their store here. But nothing compares to personally visiting their shop. It actually made me want to buy everything I saw! But of course, budget didn't allow for that. Bummer.

Ms. Vivian also taught me the basics of rubber stamping. From how to apply ink to the stamps to cleaning them. She even went as far as teaching me how to emboss! Now, if you've been doing this for a few weeks now, you'd laugh and say this is pretty basic stuff.. hehe But I'm a beginner, everything's pretty amazing to me! I was even amazed at how simple it actually was. hehe I p
lan to go visit again the next time budget allows. hehe One thing I realized is that this is NOT a cheap hobby at all.. hehe But it's absolutely rewarding..

A few pictures from my visit..

I loved this display very much.. The dolls and tin cans
at the top shelf complemented the beautiful supply of cardstock.

Inks of every imagineable color!

I told you.. Stacks and stacks of cardstock!! Amazing, huh?!?

Thanks for dropping by and have a great creative day!!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Lesson 1: Why We Scrapbook and How to Get Started

For all those who are interested in signing up for a free e-class on the wonderful art of scrapbooking, click here for a link to Ms. Jill Davis' Learn to Scrapbook E-class. I've actually just enrolled for it and I had my first lesson just now. I find it a bit comforting that this will be a 24-day e-class, a pace that's just right for a working girl like me not to feel overwhelmed with everything that there is to learn. So if you're looking for a free tutorial on scrapbooking, why not take this e-class with me? I could really use someone to talk to about everything I'm learning.

So here we go. Lesson 1 is basically an introduction into the whole course. It talks about how scrapbooking can mean differently to each person and how important it is to have your own definition and style. It explains that, though you don't really need to have your own style right away, it is encouraged that you eventually develop one to express your individuality.

So here are Five Tips to Get Started Scrapbooking by Stacy Julian, co-founder of
  1. Make up your own definition of a “scrapbook.” I'd like to think about scrapbooking as a way to practice whatever creative genes I have in my system. It is my "happy place" since I'm always in such a great mood whenever I have a pair of scissors in one hand and a cardstock in another. I don't have my own style yet. I'd like to think of it as "freestyle" as of the moment. hehe Hopefully, I'd learn to develop my own. *wink*
  2. Forget the idea that you are going to do something with ALL the photos you take.I actually learned this the hard way. I wanted to scrapbook all the photos, movie tickets, plane tickets and other trinkets that Hubbs and I have accumulated over the years and ended up finishing nothing. I always put it off because of the time that it would entail. One or two memorable photos should do.
  3. Start small.
    I've visited enough websites, blogs and online shops to know that scrapbooking can indeed overwhelm beginners like me. I'm also taking this advice and I'm starting small. So I've decided to learn about layouts, cardstock and rubber stamping first. And I'm going to get my first set of rubber stamps on Saturday! Yehey! I'm really excited to use it and practice. And when I've gotten the hang of it, I'll try all the other stuff (e.g. embossing, chalking, color blocking, stitching, die-cutting) one by one.
  4. Focus on personality and relationships.
    Well... Who could disagree with this? Pages are always breathtaking when they're about children, family, love, happiness and bonding moments. Of course, you can blog about depression, sadness, frustration and other negative feelings too and it would just be as interesting.
  5. Join the community of scrapbookers for support and inspiration.
    This one I'm really excited about! Why? Because I've finally found someone who's willing to teach me, that's why! I'm meeting Ms. Vivian on Saturday. Hopefully, we'll have many more meetings in the coming weeks. I'll blog about Ms. Vivian after our meeting, with some pictures I hope. I'm also looking into existing scrapbooking communities here in Manila that I can join.
So that's it for our first lesson. See, I told you it won't be overwhelming. How do you find it? Any insights? And also, do you know of any scrapbooking community I can join? Please do tell if you do! See you in the next e-class!


For the love of scrapbooking, I've decided to take my research a notch higher than just scouring the net. I've signed up for online classes!! Isn't that exciting? The lessons are sent through email daily for the next 24 days. And just because I'm feeling so giddy and I want to talk about my new hobby with anyone who cares to listen (hehe), I'll share all of my new learnings in the hopes that I might be able to impart additional knowledge to those who are already in the craft, or maybe even inspire someone to start.

So in 24 posts, I will be talking about lessons from my classes, one in each post. I might even be able to include pictures of my drastic attempts at practicing the techniques, but no I won't promise on that. I'm a bit scared of not being able to come up with very inspiring pictures and I don't want to discourage anybody hehe. But really, I'll give it my best. I'm also not promising to give all 24 lessons in 24 consecutive days because I'm a full-time working girl and I might not be able to visit and update my blog daily. But I promise to share all of them as soon as I can. Pinky swear.

I'll try to post my first lesson tonight. Can't wait. Thanks for dropping by!


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