take time to create

If you’re anything like me, you’ll sometimes find that your creations don’t turn out quite like you’d imagined they would.  Take my latest paper crafting adventure, for instance.

I found this magazine at the local craft store last week and fell in love with a design that was stitched on a tea towel.  At the bottom of the towel were little triangle-shaped trees in different colors and patterns, making up an adorable forest.  It was so cute!  And looked so easy!  I could transfer this simple idea to a scrapbook layout, right?

Wrong.

I started with some funny little triangles.  Found some colorful papers with patterns and textures.  And when I was finished pasting them down, along with a patterned base, it looked nothing like a forest.  Instead, I had created a… seascape?  So my trees became sailboats.  And my scrapbook layout became a small sign for my desk.  I realized when I’d finished stitching and stamping and sewing buttons in place that I had actually enjoyed the fun diversion.  What had started as an assignment for myself turned into an adventure of playing and exploring… and not knowing what I was making until I was nearly done.

So, sailboats it is.  I could use an inspirational sign for my desk, and I already know the perfect place to hang it up!  It’s a good lesson learned; even if your creativity is not leading you where you’d imagined, let yourself get lost for a little while.  Sail in a different direction, even if for only a few minutes.  It’s fun to discover new horizons!

Sophia’s Baby Album

This is the first page of Baby Sophia’s scrapbook album.  Little Sophia joined the world a few weeks ago and resides in Sweden with her parents.  A friend asked me to make the album as a holiday gift.  Of course I said yes!  I rarely get the chance to play with so much pink and frills!

The hand-stitched flowers were a lot harder and more time-consuming than I thought they would be!  But I adore how they turned out – I keep touching them because I just love the texture they give to the page.

Sophia was given the nickname of “little bug”, so of course we had to add some butterflies.  I will be adding lots of other cute bugs to the rest of the album too.

Welcome to the world, sweet little Sophia!

Three Little Pumpkins

Earlier this week I posted a quick peek at a paper crafting project I’ve been working on called Three Little Pumpkins.  Well, I’ve finally finished it, and I’m pretty pleased with the result!  I took some pictures from start to finish, in case you’re curious about the process of making this little cutie (just click on the images for a closer view).  And make sure to check out the fabric version of this project on Christina’s blog The Sometimes Crafter.  Happy crafting!

Today…

Today is a new day.  Thank goodness!  I’m very relieved that I get to start fresh because yesterday was rough

Today I’m really excited to get my copy of Kristan Higgins’ newest novel Until There Was You.  I absolutely love her writing, and have been looking forward to this book for months.  I’ll be standing by the mailbox all afternoon.  🙂

 

 

Today I’m putting the final touches on this paper crafting project that was inspired by this blog postThe Sometimes Crafter is one of my new favorite blogs – such cute stuff there!  It was really fun to work on my own “Three Little Pumpkins” project, and it was such a good distraction since I needed a break from writing.

Today I signed up for a beginner’s crochet class at a local craft shop.  The  talented Emma Lamb and lovely Natasja of crocheTime have inspired me with their gorgeous crochet work.  I don’t know if I’ll have the patience to create anything very big or beautiful, but I’ve really wanted to try crocheting for a while.  So I’m going to give it a whirl!

Today I am loving this quote by Leo Tolstoy.  It is such a good reminder of something so simple:  “If you want to be happy, be.”

Happy Fall

I had forgotten how much I love playing with colors and stitching on my scrapbook layouts.  I’ve been up to my eyeballs in manuscript editing these past weeks (months, actually – time slips by so fast!) and Project 365 was looking more like a regular photo album (with photo sleeves inserted everywhere) than a scrapbook album.  I’m really glad to be digging into my paper drawers and stitching box again – there are scraps and stray threads everywhere!  It’s wonderful.

The stitching and leaves on this layout turned out a little more frilly than I’d imagined, and at first I was disappointed.  But the more I look at it, the more I like it.  Fall can actually be a frilly kind of season, with all the bright swirling leaves and bare curving tree branches.

I enjoyed Color My Monday so much that I’m already planning another project for next week… I have some gorgeous new colors in mind.  Thanks to those of you who have been following all week – I was really surprised to see so many new visitors.  Leave a comment and say hello if you’re new!  And if you have a crafting blog of your own, make sure you leave your address.  I’d love to see what you’re working on!

Finding Balance

I’m slowly learning the lesson that there must be a creative balance in the artful life.  I can write late into the night until my eyes cross, and I’ll probably get some good stuff out, but I must also take a break.  I’m really glad that I gave myself the Color My Monday project for the week – it’s making me play and relax and feel less anxious about my writing.

Stitching is a form of quiet therapy for me, a way to replenish my inner well of creativity.   Playing with paper and sewing all over the pages actually gives my mind a break – and you’d be amazed at the helpful ideas that sneak into my brain during this time.  I have to keep my manuscript nearby so I can jot down the lovely suggestions that my muse slips to me. 

Here’s a little peek of the project – a pattern all poked out and ready for sewing.  I can’t wait to show you the finished layout.  Just a few more stitches and a little stamping…  See you soon!

Color My Monday

The cooler temps of fall have arrived – the perfect reason to hunker down inside and start some projects.  When I’m in the mood to create, but I don’t know exactly what I want to create, I start by playing with colors.  I thought I’d give you a little sneak peak of the colors I’ve chosen for this week.

My boys are on vacation during the second half of this week which means there will be lots of noise and chaos around the house.  While this doesn’t make for very good writing time, it does allow for scrapbooking!  I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on the colors and textures of paper, getting out the needle and thread, and making a cluttered mess of my desk with pictures and scraps. 

So stay tuned!  I’ll post a picture or two of my progress during the week.  I plan to have a colorful final project finished by Friday for show and tell.  🙂