I'm so happy with how this page came about. I was looking online at a preview of new scrapbooking supplies that were released at the CHA show in January and spotted a collection by Simple Stories called Heart that will be released later this Spring. Total love at first sight with the pretty colour combo - Night of Navy, Pool Party, Very Vanilla and Gold - and the lovely mix of patterns. While I was looking at the pocket scrapbooking cards in the collection, a few of the patterns reminded me of stamps or items Stampin' Up! carries. That was all it took to get the wheels spinning and for me to decide to try and make my own Project Life cards inspired by those designs.
What made this project a success were the gold-foil cards that you can currently receive as a freebie during Sale-A-Bration, in the Memories in the Making Project Life Specialty Cards pack. Did I mention I am totally in love with those? I've used four of them on this project: the gold heart (top row, left), the pretty scallops (center row, left), the gold frame (center row, center) and the falling polka dots (center row, right).
Let me show you pictures of the Simple Stories cards for starter:
Lovely, right? And now the page that was born out of it (and inspired by Simon Says Stamp's challenge Have a Heart):
Now, let me show you each card individually. The top left one was inspired by the gold heart over navy stripes. The gold heart is a transparency from the SAB Project Life card kit. I knew I wanted to use the Brushstrokes background to create the stripes. Only problem: the background stamps are sized for cardfronts and are therefore a little shorter than a 4" x 6" PL card. I first tried horizontal stripes and stamping the background stamp, trying to line up the stripes. The seam was obvious and bothered me a bit. So I pulled out my Aqua Painter brush and painted Night of Navy stripes on a piece of Vanilla cardstock myself. The result was lovely, but the colour was lighter than when using the stamp. I went back to stamping Brushstrokes on a third piece of cardstock, leaving the end blank, thinking I could use it to add the date or something. Then, I decided to try vertical stripes, thinking it would be much easier to stamp the background stamp a second time and space it out evenly. I was right, and this last try was the winning option for me. (My advice to you: cardstock is not expensive, so don't be afraid to experiment untikl you find something you're happy with. I bet you I'll end up reusing my other stamped scraps on other projects anyway.) On some of the original cards, some hearts had a banner going over it and I suddenly remembered the new Big Numbers Framelits and Number of Years stamp set have a folded banner in them. Perfect!
The top right card was inspired by the card with the aqua dots and gold LOVE word. I liked the random polka dot pattern and the outline letters. To give the dots texture, I used a sponge dauber to create my pattern. I added more ink to some and less to others for dimension. For the letters, my first idea was to die-cut letters and use them as stencils to trace the outline with a gold pen. Not a bad idea except that a) I haven't been able to find a good gold pen anywhere. I have a gel one that is more mustard yellow than gold and I knew it wouldn't match the other pieces on my page. I then pulled out the Gold Stampin' Dazzle marker SU! used to carry a couple of catalogues ago. I tried it out with my die-cut letters on a scrap of paper and did not like the result, which I thought looked sloppy because of the larger tip on the marker. Bacl to the drawing board. I remembered I had an outline stamp set from many moons ago, so I pulled it out, stamped it in VersaMark and embossed it in gold. Much better results. I had stamped the O first to center my word, but because the A and M are larger than the U and R, the word was not perfectly centered after all, so I added a heart punched out of Gold Foil Paper to make up for it. (As my friends Maggie and Susy put it, there's not mistakes in stamping, only opportunities to embellish.)
Underneath, I glued a piece of Gold Glimmer Ribbon (2015 Holidays Catalogue) and added a strip of Night of Navy cardstock die-cut with the heart row from the Mini Treat Bag Framelits dies set. (Check it out, it's part of the Weekly Deals, until end of day February 8th. It knocks off CAD$12 so it's a great deal, and this includes a ton of lovely accents I use all the time on my various projects.) A piece of 1/8" Gold Ribbon was also added.
For the center row, the first card was inspired by the lined aqua square. It reminded me of the Writing Notes background stamp, which I stamped in Pool Party of matching cardstock. I then remembered a saying that fitted my page nicely, so I used mini alphabet stamps to add it on the lines. Initially, I had stamped the whole sentiment in Night of Navy, switching to another alphabet for the word "All" to emphasize it", but at the end, I decided to add the gold scallop overlay (SAB Project Life Specialty Cards again) over the top and it looked really pretty... but hid the last stamped word. No worry, I decided to die-cut Vanilla letters to glue the last word in place on top. It looked nice, but the letters were not hiding the last stamped word , so I tried adding a piece of cardstock over it to hide it. I had planned on using the same colour of cardstock, but when I tried navy, I liked the contrast and thought it made the overall card more interesting. Sold!
The second card's starting point was the gold frame, and I knew it would make sense for this one to be the journaling card. Going back to the inspiration cards, you'll see the one with the greyish frame has a piece of washi at top. I looked at my options to add washi and since the whole card was only vanilla and gold at that point, I wanted to add colour, so I used a piece of Pool Party cardstock and to add interest, glue a piece of gold-design washi over it, before die-cutting it with the washi tape Framelits from the Mini Treat Bag. (See, told you this kit is useful!) I then reached for the Project Life Paper Clips Framelits and used the heart-shaped one on a piece of polka dot navy paper (Midnight Muse, actually, but you can't even tell the difference.) I like how the clip comes out of the pocket and over the other card. I think it breaks off the overall grid of the page. (Keep in mind you can do that on sides where the pocket is opened. Double check, though, because on certain vertical layouts, the pockets are opened at right or left instead of at top.)
The cute little Pool Party hearts? They come from the Best Day Ever stamp set (last year's Sale-A-Bration) and were stamped to fill in the space at the end of my journaling.
Because I had pulled out the Number of Years stamp set on my first card, I spotted the brushstroke and flower images and thought this would make a great 3" x 4" card. The stamp set sort of drove the overall design, but there are a couple of elements that connect to my inspiration piece. First because the Simple Stories collection has a couple of flowery cards, and also because if you look closely at that LOVE outline letters card I referred to earlier, it has little rectangles of text collaged over the words. I loved that detail, but decided to not use it on my title card because I didn't feel my letters were tall enough to be able to hide them partially and still have the word be easily legible.
This idea came back into play here when I spotted in the stamp set "the number of years the world has been a better place because you're in it". The way the French is translated, the sentence made sense on its own if I omitted the last line, and then it became "your presence makes this world a better place." This is certainly how we feel about having my niece in our life, so I stamped the whole sentiment (didn't bother my markers because I knew I would be cutting it apart anyway) and used my Stampin' Cutter to cut it in skinny strips and glued them on the card.
The fourth one was inspired by something else that I saw in the CHA release preview, but this one is from Crate Paper instead. They are coming up with those fringed hearts that are absolutely lovely. Let me show you:
I had pinned that image for inspiration, knowing I could make something similar using our fringe scissors. As I was putting together my page, I thought it would be the perfect touch for this page, especially with the heart shape! So I cut fringes on five strips of cardstock and glued them one over the other on a scrap of paper and then I used the heart from the Mini Treat Bag Framelits (there they are again!). A few tips for you: be careful how you place the die on the fringes because you don't want your top row of fringes to fall apart when you cut the heart if there is no adhesive keeping it together after die-cutting. On the example above, they used sewing, probably for that very reason, so if you have done some sewing on paper projects before, that might be a good option. I peraonlly placed the heart high enough to keep my line of adhesive on the heart and I had to glue back two fringes (center and right edge) that fell when I pulled the heart out of the Big Shot. If you use cardstock, you will have a really thick piece with the various strips so you'll have to run the heart die through the Big Shot a few times to completely cut through. Using the filter paper (which you can stamp or color) might be an easier option for that reason. I managed to cut through all of the cardstock layers, but I had to snip the heart out of the last layer with scissors, which was not too hard because I followed the die-cut groove as a guide. You will also need to fluff back your fringes because the Big Shot will really flatten them out! I used the tip of my paper piercer to fluff them back up.
The heart was glued on top of the gold confetti PL Specialty card and I added a little bow die-cut out of Gold Foil paper using the Mini Treat Bag Framelits (...!) and added a pearl on it.
The bottom left card is directly inspired by a Simple Stories card. Theirs has the word Remember covering the whole card, with only one of those words in aqua amongst navy ones. I really liked the concept, but the font they used also reminded me of the font we have in the Best Day Ever stamp set. So I used my Stamp-a-ma-jig and covered a whole piece of Very Vanilla cardstock, starting with the sentiment in Pool Party and working around it to add the others in Night of Navy.
Once this was done, I noticed I had some blank spaces where the word day appears, since it is shorter than the other two words. So I got the Owl punch out and punched little hearts out of Gold Foil Paper. I made sure to add adhesive sheets on the back before punching so that it made my life a whole lot easier when came time to glue the hearts down in place. (On a side note, I've used my owl punch a few times here and there on projects, but I think this purchase has paid for itself just with the number of little hearts I've punched with it. I swear, this little heart is just the right shape and size to fill in letters, corners in a frame, add next to a sentiment, place in the Banner punch. Never would have thought I would use it this much.)
Finally, I placed my picture in the last pocket. The top corner of the picture was all black, so it was the perfect spot to embellish. I had a couple of things set aside that had not been used on my other cards. including the wide Vanilla striped ribbon that was sold in the last Holidays catalogue, a piece of gold heart Designer washi tape and a vanilla rose from the Artisan Embellishments Kit (used on my other projects this week) that was begging to be used on this page. That rose is really bulky though, so I used glue dots to add it to the top of the pocket instead of inside on the picture.
I hope this can inspire you to pull out your stamps and dies and make some Project Life cards of your own!
Stampin' Up! Supplies
Stamps: Au fil des années (Number of Years), Best Day Ever,
Jumbo Outline Alphabet, Brushstrokes, Writing Notes, mini alphabets
Cardstock: Night of Navy, Pool Party, Very Vanilla, Gold Foil Paper
Ink: Night of Navy, Pool Party, VersaMark
Project Life Specialty Cards: Memories in the Making
Big Shot: Big Numbers Framelits, Mini Treat Bag Framelits, Project Life Paper Clips Framelits,
Timeless Type Alphabet Dies
Accessories: Gold Designer Washi Tape, Gold Glimmer Ribbon, Small Heart Punch,
Owl Punch, Stampin' Dimensionals, Gold Sequin Trim, Artisan Embellishments Kit,
Wide Vanilla Striped Ribbon, Stapler, Fringe Scissors, Gold Stampin' Emboss Powder,
1/8" Gold Ribbon, Sponge Dauber, Stampin' Write Markers