Breaking News!!

I have great news to share!

You may have heard that I will soon be teaching in Millington, MI (east of Birch Run).

I will also begin teaching out of my home! These classes will be small, but I will try to help you with new techniques, make projects and more.

My first class will be Copic 101. In this class you will learn what these special markers are, how to use them, how to keep them cost-effective and much, much more. This class is just $20 and is set for Saturday, June 22 at 10 a.m. You must register for this class by e-mailing me at candyspiegel@yahoo.com.

I am also offering to teach at your house, church, business, etc. Wherever you can gather a few of your friends, I can come and teach. I can even work up unique projects just for you.

Until we meet again, here is one of my recent layouts.

fireworks_Candy_Spiegel

Last year, my nephew was obsessed with fireworks. He kept smelling them and telling us how much he love the smell. He was so excited to send them off, I had to showcase the emotions of the day.

This layout features the new line by Authentique and corrugated cardstock by Fancy Pants.

fireworks2_candy_spiegel I used cutouts from one of the sheets of paper as embellishments. I distressed them with the Tonic/Tim Holtz Distress Tool and Distress Ink and added staples with the Tiny Attacher.fireworks3_candy_spiegel

 

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Sometimes Simple is Superb

It is easy to feel intimidated when looking at another person’s creations.

Some pages are so beautifully layered, I cannot imagine ever doing something so fantastic. When I see something like that, I have to remind myself that is a special page and not all layouts can be like that. Many are designed to inspire or sell products, not necessarily to preserve memories.

Sure, I like to create beautiful art, too, but I have neither the time, nor the funds, to make every page outstanding. I have too many stories to tell and I take too many photos. Besides, simple pages focus on the photos much more than those done in the name of art.

Personally, I would rather see someone adhere their photos to a piece of cardstock and take the time to write the story behind the pictures rather than just frame one photo with tons of embellishments.

So, today I am sharing some of the pages I did last week during my scrapbooking retreat. They are not “artist” pages and wouldn’t be found on display at CHA. But they help me remember those special moments and maybe they will help inspire you to relax and get your memories recorded. (Click on the photos for a larger view).

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These are some random pictures of my son while he was in Guam. I used paper, die cuts and a transparency from KaiserCraft. Some of the photos are behind the transparency and some are on top … I love the way they look! The tags talk about how wonderful it is to live in paradise.

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These are photos of the chicken tractor my husband designed and built for our chickens. It is designed to be picked up and moved around the yard every week. This way, the chickens always have fresh grass to eat and the yard doesn’t get turned into a sand pit. I was pretty proud of the way he researched and engineered it. It can comfortably accommodate seven chickens. So far, it has worked exactly like he planned!

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These are some pictures of my son I “stole” off of Facebook. The quality of the photos isn’t quite what I expect, but they work just fine. This is the first time I have “seen” him working since he joined the Navy, so I was pretty excited to see these pictures. When I went to scrapbook them, I couldn’t find any military paper. I didn’t want to work on plain cardstock, so I used the back of one of the Valentine’s papers from Authentique. I thought it worked perfectly … although it does make me laugh when I flip over the page to lovely pink flowers!

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This page commemorates our first time growing vegetables and preserving them for later use. This year, we canned two different kinds of salsa, three different kinds of pickles and two different batches of yellow tomato preserves. I also made sun-dried tomatoes and vegetable broth and froze green peppers, corn, zucchini, yellow squash and eggplant. My mother-in-law also made pickles (her bread-and-butter pickles are so good, I won’t even try to make them), beets and tomatoes. I love looking at all of the food we put up. There is an amazing feeling of pride every time I open that freezer or closet door!033Many of the elements on this page are cut from paper, including the tags I journaled on and the jars along the bottom. This is a great way to embellish pages without spending a lot of money … after all, an extra sheet of paper is about $1; embellishments usually run $4 to $5. I used Pop Dots on the jars to make them stand out. This page uses papers from October Afternoon’s Farm Girl line.

So there you have a few simple pages. Hope you can find some inspiration in here, too!

 

And the Eagle will Fly

I’ve been doing a lot of cards lately … mostly because I have been having fun coloring with Copics!

But, I thought it was time to share some of the scrapbook pages I have been making lately.

This one features a photo that my husband took on one our trips to the Detroit Zoo. I wanted to highlight what the eagle symbolizes — America, freedom, the stars and stripes, etc.

Here’s what I came up with …

The papers are from Tim Holtz (they’re the back sides). I love them because they are solids, but with the built-in distressing, they have depth and are not boring. I edged each piece with Distress Ink and layered them. The Betsy Ross image is cut out from another sheet of paper.

Next, I added a strip of ribbon from Maya Road and attached it with a few Craft Glue Dots. I’m not sure who made the lace ribbon, but I inked it with Distress Ink to match and then attached it with the Tiny Attacher.

Then, I added a few cardstock stickers (also from Tim Holtz).

The stars are from Close To My Heart — they are corrugated kraft paper and were just released a few days ago. I painted them, unevenly, with Distress Crackle Paint. When that dried, I brushed the tops with a bit of Distress Ink. Then, I added a bit of gold Paint Dabber in spots and, finally, edged them in Black Soot Distress Ink. I love the effect. You can click on the photos for a closer look.

I wanted the page to reflect some of the hardworking, blue-collar labor that has made this country what it is today. So, I added some brads, washers and a game spinner from Ideaology and a couple of star charms from My Mind’s Eye. Then, I added some staples, using the Tiny Attacher, as additional accents.

What do you think?

Best friends

In one week my son leaves for Guam.

For the next two years, he’ll be working in the hospital there as a corpsman for the U.S. Navy.

He’s excited. Living on a tropical island with surfing, diving and swimming has been his dream since he was little.

I am happy for him, but I am sad that he will be on the other side of the world. I just hate having him so far away for so long and I am missing him before he even leaves.

But, I am not the only one who will be missing him. His best friend, Kevin, who also joined the Navy, will be missing him, too.

The two have been friends since sixth grade. We have taken Kevin on trips with us and my son has called Kevin’s mother, “Mom,” for years.

Although Kevin joined the Navy first, Christopher left first. I worried they would be forever separated as they went to different schools on different bases.

Fortunately it worked out so that Kevin was able to attend Christopher’s graduation from boot camp and that Christopher was able to visit the last weekend before Kevin left for boot camp. The boys were together again when Kevin graduated from boot camp.

These photos, some taken by me and some by Kevin’s mom, are priceless to me as they show the boys together during those special moments and I wanted to scrap them for our latest Scrap Wars challenge at Scrap Tales.

Our challenge was to create our own background paper using inks, stamps, masks or whatever we wanted. We also had to include a flower made from either ribbon or by layering paper.

I used Alcohol Ink on a piece of acetate to create a watery sort of background. After putting ink on the pad, I used it on the edges. As the ink began to dry, I worked it in the middle of the page, so the middle is much more speckled than border.

For the title and arrows, I used Grungeboard from Tim Holtz, painted in Ranger’s Paint Dabbers.

The compass and words were part of die cut from The Paper Loft. I inked them with Distress Ink.

The journaling block is the new Sizzix embossing plate by Tim Holtz. Again, I inked it a bit to add contrast.

The hardest part was the flower. I wasn’t sure how to incorporate a flower into the page without making it feminine. Finally, I decided on the Sizzix/Tim Holtz flower die. I thought the varied edges would make it less girly. I used both cardstock and a military printed paper from Karen Foster to cut the flowers and layered them with dimensional foam.

For a finishing touch, I added a strip of ┬áTim Holtz’s new tissue ribbon — I love how the blue alcohol ink shows through the tape — and an anchor sticker from Reminisce.