Participating in the Scrapbooking Layout Challenge put on by the Midland scrapbook store has made me very aware of my scrapbooking style. I am a very photo heavy scrapbooker (I just printed 150 photos last week, so I'm not surprised by this revelation). I love the detail that is added through embellishments, but they have always taken a back seat to the photos. I seldom use loud or busy paper for a background, as I want the photos to be the focus, not the background. My scrapping mindset seems to be that I am scrapbooking to remember the good times, not to look back and admire really cool stickers (I could get a sticker book for that!).

My reluctance to sacrifice photos for embellishments made the Layout Challenge just that - a challenge. The kit came with more paper and embellishments than I would normally use on a two page spread, let alone the one page I was to do for the contest. The rules stated that you must use 80% of the materials provided, which meant I had to step out of my comfort zone and rock that paper!

The challenge led me to pick up a few new techniques.  The first one was layering papers. Many of my previous layouts have had pictures placed on accenting paper to give them the illusion of a boarder.  For the challenge layout I put photos on top of accenting paper on top of EVEN MORE accenting paper; two boarders instead of one!  Layering the paper was an easy way to use it up, so I did it as often as I could.  I even used the layering effect to enhance the lettering for the title of my page by combining it with another new-ish technique: using a square punch.  I have a Creative Memories square punch that I rarely use, but it was perfect for helping me boarder the letters in my title.  My normal go-to style is to just put lettering directly onto the page, but I love the way the layered letters turned out, so I am definitely going to use this technique again for future layouts.

The best new technique I had to learn was working with brads (see photo, right). I have seen various brads in the stores before, but I was never really interested in them.  Now that I have worked with them, I can't wait to use them again!  I don't have the tool kit you are supposed to use to set them onto your page, but I had a general idea of how it worked so I improvised using a hammer and a Robertson head screwdriver.  It worked just fine!  Plus the awesome thing about brads is that they remind me of being in grade two and making paper clocks. Did you ever do that? The brad fastens the clock hands onto the clock face and allows the hands to be movable so you can set the time.  Seven year old me wants to get some more brads just so I can make a paper clock. So much fun!

Now that I have told you all about my new adventures in scrapbooking for the layout contest, you would think I would show you the finished page I made.  And I would ... if it was finished.  Rest assured, I will post my Layout Challenge page once it is completed.

Posted by Jen B On Thursday, January 20, 2011 2 comments

2 comments:

  1. I can't wait to see your page - I'm so curious after all the build up :) I'm sort of stuck in a rut, scrapbook wise. I haven't done anything recently except for a spread that I'm really not happy with. I need to learn to use embellishments, because the thing I'm not happy with is it just looks boring :P

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  2. I'll post it this weekend for sure. :)

    Layouts are tricky sometimes. I did one recently where the dominant colours in the photos were blue and gold, so the only embellishing I did was put blue and gold paper around the photos. I thought I was done, but the next day it was just so plain! The photos were fun, the colours were vibrant, but the layout was somehow still plain! I added some journaling and some stickers and it made a world of difference. It is funny though, because I've done other "minimal" layouts that don't look plain at all. I guess it depends on the day. ;)

    Have you used any embellishments before or do you need to expand the way you use them? I just found brads and think they are super neat!

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