Scrapbooking, Tutorials

Scrap Your Scraps – June Blog/Video Hop with Darrel Rob

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Hi Everyone and welcome to our Scrap your Scraps June Blog/Video Hop.

The Scrap Your Scraps girls have been working hard to come up with some awesome ideas of how to use our scrap branding strips.

Led by Tori (creator of Scrap your Scraps), Tyla, Jennifer, Heather and I have joined in to create a series of youtube videos and blog posts showing you how we use branding strips to create fabulous papercrafts.

My focus today is a traditional scrapbook layout that combines branding strips to make a colourful background echoing the theme of my photograph.

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The final layout

For those of you who have clicked through from youtube and prefer your crafty inspiration to be moving, I have created a flip process video! For a more traditional blog post showing you all the details of how you can create an original background from branding strips, keep scrolling! And the next stop on your hop is linked below the tutorial.

Branding Backgrounds

Ok, so the first thing to decide when scrapping your scraps, is which scraps you want to use. I know that sounds obvious, but if you have a decent scrap collection (or just a messy one like me)

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Scrap stash

then it can be important to select scraps in a colour theme or style or even a designer so that you don’t spend the next 12 hrs just sorting bits of paper.

I have recently been on an organisation kick after finally sourcing a supplier of “iris-like” containers in Aus. I have combined all my Shimelle products into one box, which includes a few papers and stickers from her first line, a mix of True Stories items and everything from her last line Starshine that I could get my hands on!

These containers really are an excellent way to keep both collections and your scraps sorted. As you can see there’s even a perfect spot to house your branding strips.

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Really useful box & shimelle

Step 1 – Select your image

For me, the easiest way to scrapbook is to select a photo I’m excited about and everything tends to develop from there. As I thought about what I might be able to do with branding strips that was a bit different, this image came to mind. In the last couple of months via participating in @barefootcrafter’s #saturdaynightcraftalong, I’ve been introduced to English paper piecing – or making hexies for those in the know – which is basically a method of quilting by hand. I’m now obsessed and so combining my old love of scrapbooking and my new love of hexies seemed like a fun idea.

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Step 2 – Collate your branding strips

I was inspired by the image above to make my own paper rainbow hexies. So I started by laying out all the branding strips I had from across all three of Shimelle’s paper lines. Some were from 6×6 and 12 x 12 paper pads (hence the holes) and others were from individual papers.

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Branding strip rainbow love

In terms of creating a rainbow to echo the photo, as you can see, I was short half a strip of pink so I cut one strip from a paper in the 6×6 Starshine pad.

The next step is to simply glue your strips down onto white cardstock. I used an ordinary glue stick as it has the advantage of your strips being moveable for a few moments so you can ensure they are aligned as closely as possible.

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Gluing your strips

Step 3 – Make your ‘hexies’

To cut the hexies I used the second smallest hexagon from the Kaisercraft die set – it’s a 1 inch hexagon – and just ran strips of my branding paper through my sizzix. Depending on where you place your dies, you can change the colour combination.

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Paper hexies in the making

If you are nervous about committing to a particular colour combination, don’t be. It’s very simple to switch around the strips to create new colour hexies. Simply cut the paper, or even cut a new strip. Then attach with washi tape and run through your sizzix as normal.

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Adjusting your hexies

So initially I made 5 hexies – a complete rainbow. But after testing them laid out in a line, as I was my original vision (pictured below), I realised I needed many more. And that’s the beauty of mounting the strips on paper first . You can just keep cutting!

Step 4 – Frame your background

Both the photograph and the hexies are very colourful. In those circumstances I decided a white background was necessary in order to avoid losing the impact of the paper hexies. But white all the way to the edge didn’t provide enough contrast to frame the hexies. So I set about creating a double border.

The striped paper (from Shimelle Starshine) echoed the rainbow perfectly. I cut 3/8 of an inch of all sides of the black AC cardstock and then 1 inch off 2 adjoining sides of the white AC cardstock. My fellow Aussies might find it strange that I am working in inches but my cutting pad is in inches and I find it a lot easier to line up the grid and simply cut rather then try and measure in metric, mark with a pencil and then cut. A 12 inch paper cutter is top of my ‘must buy’ list!

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Framing the background

Before sticking down the white cardstock I cut the ‘guts’ out of the black and rainbow cardstock, freehand with a scalpel. Of course that gives me new scraps for another project. You don’t need to, but I’m thinking if you are the kind of person who saves scraps, you are also the kind of person that cringes at using almost 3 full 12 x 12 sheets just for 1 background.

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Cutting the guts out

Step 5 – Make your background

The next step is fun. Just keep moving around your hexies until you are happy with the layout. And glue down. Simple right? Mmmm perhaps deceptively so.

Initially I was planning on a single line of hexies like this. ….

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Rejected layout

But to my eye there’s too much white space and the photo is left floating. So after a good half hour (seriously!) of moving things around, and consulting my other half, I finally settled on a loose diagonal arrangement. The gap in the lower right hand side is intentional, reflecting the placement of the photo.

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Version 2 arrangement

Notice how the corner hexies are cut to look like they extend off the page. I think this is a geat technique that can be applied to embellishments as well as background elements, as it helps keep the eye moving.

Step 6 – Fix your major items in place

When I’m building a layout, I always settle on my title and photo placement before fussing with embellishments as they tend to dominate the space.

The photo was located in the lower right hand side, which meant for balance and to follow the line laid out by the hexies, I structured the title in the upper left hand side. The title is made with gold thickers from ‘I’m not sure who’. It’s a pack I’ve had open in my stash for a while now. The # is from Dear Lizzy thickers since the original pack must be the only thicker set in history without multiple ###

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The major elements

To help the photo ‘pop’, I pulled a piece of black glitter paper from my scrap box and cut a rectangular frame using my sizzix. I then glued it to the photo and trimmed it to fit. The photo is attached with double sided tape.

Step 7 – Selecting embellishments

The experience of spending more time sorting through your embellishment stash than it takes to actually make the layout is one I’m sure many of us have shared. This is another reason why I’m embracing focusing on a single designer per layout. Elements from the one designer are generally going to go together quicker then trying to match colour or design across a range of manufacturers.

My process is to pick out what I think might work, and then to narrow my focus to placement using just those handful of items. The die cut word ‘lovely’ which I made from both scraps of black glitter and solid gold cardstock is a die from Shimelle ‘ s first line. I also selected some stickers, die cuts, wood veneer, acrylic heart and some beautiful clips from Starshine that I ultimately excluded because of the silver vs gold clash.

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Embellishment selection

So between these two images, you can see what I started with and then just the few items that actually made it on to the layout. In the end, I decided I wanted the focus on the paper hexie background so less became more.

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And just a few close ups of the details……

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This die cut just happened to be perfect – in the sense that it was in a colour which matched my rainbow and the sentiment fits perfect with a layout about my new hobby!

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This sticker from the Starshine pack once again fit perfectly both colour wise and meaning wise. I really love Shimelle’s lines for this exact reason – they speak to me!!!

Now the eagle eyed amongst you will notice there’s no journalling or even a date. That’s because I combine my traditional layouts with project life spreads so the companion page to this one will set out all the details of my new hobby.

Ok, that’s it from me. I hope you’ve been inspired to scrap your scraps.

Would you like to see what the rest of our amazing team has created? Click the links below for some wonderful inspiration.

The next stop on the hop is Jennifer Gagne

If you get lost come back here to get on track.

Tori Bissell

Tyla Perry

Darrel Rob

Jennifer Gagne

Heather Ulmer

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