Friday, January 21, 2011

8 is enough!

Surprisingly, it is actually more than enough!

If you haven't heard about Ella Publishing then you really must hop over there now, or after you're read this anyway. i totally love their ebooks, they are super stylish, affordable and packed with lovely things by awesome designers. One of my favourite purchases from them was the Eight is Enough ebook, which some of the Studio Calico Designers worked on, and i would highly recommend it. The idea of the book is to choose 8 products and make 4 pages from just those 8 products (but basics like cardstock, pens and trimmers are allowed extras). i decided to take up the challenge. 

These are the products i chose:

Papers: October Afternoon & Studio Calico (kit exclusive), Stickers: Studio Calico, Ribbon: My Minds Eye, Brads: American Crafts, Buttons: Making Memories, Mist: Tattered Angels.

and the B-sides of the papers look like this:

My approach was to pick my supplies and then chose photos to go with them from the hundreds that i already have printed out. i tried to pick colours that i knew would go with my travel photos as i have an endless supply of them, and i figured i'd find this easier if my photos had a common theme, so i went with the blue/cream papers. i then picked out the red to change things up a bit. i liked that the Dear Lizzy brads also had a pop of yellow in them too. Got to love how most manufacturers produce double sided patterned paper these days. Have you been scrapping long enough to remember the days when patterned paper was just that - paper? The thickness of paper and only single sided, say WHAT?! How times have changed. My favourite paper, which i could easily have used on every page was the graph paper from Studio Calico. It came in the Granny's Cupboard, but luckily for me it also appears in their Documentary collection on the B-side of Window Seat. i've already bought quite a few extra sheets of that, it's so usable. Originally i had picked out some cream alphabet stickers and i was planning to change the colour of them with the mist if i wanted to, but i went for the Studio Calico Anthology stickers instead, two different font options and plenty of stickers. i did a title on each page and i never ran out of any of the letters, although i did have to improvise a little bit towards the end :)

In all honesty i didn't think i would find this challenge all that hard because i am not much of an embellishment girl, i love my buttons, brads and ribbons but i can leave all the other pretty things if i need to. And i did find it easy to work with just those 8 products, in fact i didn't even end up using the mist at all on my first 4 pages, so really this post should be title 7 is enough! But i was really surprised at just how far i could stretch my patterned paper and how few embellishments i ended up using. i always knew i had a simple style but i don't think i realised just how simple. So i had a little look through my albums and my favourite pages design wise, the ones i was instantly drawn to, are definitely the uncluttered ones with lots of white space. And don't get me wrong, if you are a scrapper that uses lots of embellies & layers then power to you, i just can't seem to pull it off. The pretty paper and bits are fun to play with, and i DO love the creative process, but when i look over my pages it's the photos + journalling = memories which mean the most to me. So from now on i'm going to try and focus on a more simple approach (although this won't help in my never ending quest to dwindle my supplies!). 

Here's the first page i did:

i kind of scraplifited myself for this one based on the page i did here, but flipped it. i sometimes like to play with angles when i'm shooting photos but it can make scrapping them a bit tricky, so i just opt to scrap at an angle too. 

Page 2. 

The 'freebies' like cardstock came in handy, because it meant i could introduce a whole other colour without using any of my eight supplies. Sneaky! i cut out the patterned paper behind the photo to stretch the paper that bit further. i really like the ribbon on ribbon here. This picture was taken at Lake McKenzie on Fraser Island in Australia. 

Page number 3. 

This is where things started to go a bit pear shaped. i actually redid this page. Not entirely, but where the map paper is now on either side of the photo, i originally had crammed in loads of buttons in an attempt to try and use them all up.

It was just too much, so i cut the layout to pieces, re-jigged and reassembled with the patterned paper in place of the buttons. i also moved the journalling because i wasn't happy with where it was. i am not usually one for re-doing layouts, i'm normally a 'it's done, move on and stop fretting' kind of girl. i can't think of a time where i've done it before, but i was not happy with the way it looked, it was bugging me so i had to change it. i'm happy with how it turned out in the end and i'm glad i re-did it.

Page 4.

i knew some of my Tokyo pictures would go well with the red October Afternoon paper,  and i used the quote paper on the reverse to mat the photo and i also cut it so that i'd preserve the 'sweet memories' quote. 

At the point where i'd done 4 pages i still had lots of paper scraps left + a whole load of buttons, brads and a few bits of ribbon. i didn't want to put the scraps back into my stash so i just carried on making more pages.These pages actually came together the quickest, i think i am more productive when i have less product to work with!

Page 5.

i was annoyed at myself for not using the mist so far. There's so much you can do with mist, i love to spray it on my background card, have fun masking with it, but it's also great for changing the colour of stuff too. i ended up using a few splotches of it on this page, but not much. It's funny because it seems every page i do at the moment has a load of mist on it, but i obviously wan't feeling it for these pages. i tend to have 2 styles of pages, the simple linear/graphic style and the artsy/messy style with little bits and pieces here and there. i like to flit between the two. That's what i love about scrapbooking, that there are no rules! If i chose to have mist as one of my 8 products again, i'd really challenge myself to use it lots of different ways, i was very lazy with the mist this time around!

Page 6.

Photo Credit: Miss

This page came together easily as it was just a case of messing around with the scraps that i had left. i also used some of the packaging from the MME ribbon in the top right hand corner.

And last, but not least: page 7.

Photo Credit: Miss

i really didn't have much patterned paper left at this point. i originally had this picture on my desk intending to do a page about the gig we were at when it was taken. But the October Afternoon map paper i had left over made me think of our life living in our town within a city, so i decided to scrap about that instead. i used some Co'ordinations Cardstock the wrong side up to add a bit of texture. There is minimal product on this one and it was so quick to make, but it turned out to be one of my favourite layouts of the bunch.

i really loved this challenge, it forced me to look at the supplies in a whole different light. i didn't work on these layouts consecutively, i just worked with this 'kit' when i felt like it. My pages came together quite quickly as i didn't waste time faffing over which products to use, and i am all for that. This would definitely be a great way to go if you are someone who goes to crops. The double sided paper meant i had 6 different patterns to choose from so the layouts didn't all end up looking the same. i'm pleased also that i didn't just end up doing travel layouts so it means these will be spread throughout a few different albums. Anyway, i'm sure no one is ever going to look through them and say 'hey, didn't you already use those papers and stickers on another layout?!'. Heeee! All in all, it was a great exercise to use up some stash, so i think i'll try and do it every month or so. Next time i think i'll pick some embellishments that i'm not so comfortable with and see how i go!

Anyone else given this a go? Link me up if you have, i'd love to see!

ETA: i am thrilled to announce that i'm the January winner for the 8 is enough contest!! Check out the lovely things they said about my layouts in this post! If you'd like to enter email entries to, with “Eight is Enough” in the subject line. e-mail pictures of all four of your layouts (each sized to 800 pixels tall maximum), plus a picture of your eight original supplies, and an explanation of how you stretched each layout. Good luck! 


Unknown said...

That was an awesome gig :) While I remember: Do you ever frame your scraped pages and have them up on the wall etc.?

Curlywiggles said...

i once framed a page of my sisters & i and had it up on the wall in my old flat. i don't think She Who Must Not Be Named would appreciate me doing that in our apartment though! i do have a mini easel on my desk which i tend to keep my latest pages on, so they are kept out for a while before they go away into albums.

Lythan said...

I've got you on my blog reader and just had to comment and say what an inspirational post! I'm really going to have to give this a go. Love all your layouts :)

lisa truesdell said...

love what you did!!!! these are all beautiful.

Giuli said...

Love this wonderful clean style you've used. Amazing pages!

Anonymous said...

Excellent! I keep meaning to do this challenge, but I'm such a chicken! You have inspired me... thanks!

Sasha said...

love it you nailed it girl .. now how are you going to be in London and not look me up .. shaking my head LOL. I kid I kid .. oh see'ng your layouts makes me miss Asia so much .. hope you had a blast girl ..

thanks for stopping by my blog boo.

Keshet said...

I love how you did this, Alexa! The layouts are lovely and I love the color scheme you chose. Hope you had a great weekend!

Alisha said...

A link that you may be interested in as it is in the same vein is
except you match the supplies so you could 'shop your stash' and use up older supplies that way :D

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