Project Life :: Week 14


I'm not going to lie, I really struggled with this one. It wasn't until I was nearly finished that I worked out what I wanted to do! But once I sorted that out, I'm really happy with how it turned out. My motto is always "done is better than perfect"!

I'm using the May Citrus Twist Kits Pocket life kit and I'm super excited and proud that the May kits feature some of my brush script! The stamp sets in each kit all have some of my brush script words in them and the Pocket Life kit also has a few 3x4 cards I designed. I've used one of them below.


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

What I've been reading lately


I've been on a real reading frenzy since the start of this year when I challenged myself to read more, well, to read at least 10 books this year. Here is what I've read since then (looks like I'm going to meet that challenge too) ...

The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey.
I didn't fully realise this was a zombie novel when I started it, and although I would normally avoid them, this story was both powerful and heartbreaking. I was completely hooked on this book from the start and couldn't stop until I was finished. The ending had me thinking about this book long after I put it down.

My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout.
A rather poignant story about the complicated nature of mothers and daughters. Beautifully written, it had me feeling all the feelings: joy, loneliness, sadness, love. I both enjoyed it and wished I'd never read it in equal measure.

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn.
I really wish this was a full length novel and not a short story, the premise was pretty good but the story felt rushed, the characters weren't fully realised and the ending was ... maybe the start of a bigger story ... it didn't feel like the story had finished anyway.

Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs.
This is the third and final book in the Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children series, and I've enjoyed every one. I felt a tiny bit lost throughout the beginning as I didn't re-read the other two before starting this one but once I got caught up I was hooked and spent the entire day devouring it.

The Ice Twins by S. K. Tremayne.
This book really did keep me guessing about what was happening through every page. Creepy, tense and intriguing, I was only slightly let down by the ending when the narrator was changed and it felt like everything was being explained in case I was too stupid to have worked it out myself.

We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler.
I really struggled to get into this one and after putting it down about a third of the way through and reading two other books, I finally picked it back up to give it one more go. And I was hooked.

Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed.
Small, beautifully written, nuggets of advice for a life well-lived. This book had me laughing out loud one minute and crying the next. Because isn't that what life is really like?!

Kellie Stamps :: May Sneaks


The May release from Kellie Stamps is right around the corner! May, already? [Shakes head in disbelief.] I used the two new releases in two different ways to create background papers.

Above I used the digital set MY FAVE to create some random brushes in Photoshop and then foiled them (anyone have any hints on photographing foil? I swear they look a million times better in real life!).

And below I went analog and hand stamped a pattern with the LABEL THAT clear stamps, then cut out a few places and backed them with patterned paper. Hint: that whole process would have been a million times quicker with digital stamps and my Silhouette! But what can I say, I'm an old-school-kinda gal!


Project Life :: Week 13

After the last few weeks of lovely, bright, warm tones, the cooler colours that are also in the April Citrus Twist Kits Pocket life kit are a refreshing change. I had a real hodge-podge of photos this week so I tied the whole spread together using only blue or neutral papers, cards and embellishments. I can't help feel like this spread is so good because of that little face though! The dog that is, not mine!


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Kellie Stamps :: RAD


I used the RAD digital stamps to create the cut-out title suing my Silhouette. It can be tricky to cut of something this intricate but the trick is patience while peeling it up (and not using a new, super sticky mat – opps, lesson learnt!). I backed the cut with glitter paper, gluing is down with Multi Medium Matt, and resisted the urge to use a white background and instead went for this peach coloured stripe.


Project Life :: Week 12

This week I'm using the April Citrus Twist Kits Pocket life kit. The bright and warm colour scheme is the perfect way to chase away the Autumn blues I've got at the moment. I love how many words I've managed to pack into this spread, but man, those tiny gold glitter alphas! If someone could invent an easier way of using them, I'd be forever grateful! Lucky they are so cute!

Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Day in the Life


I was so pleased that I actually managed to document a whole day for Ali Edwards Day in the Life, so I wanted to make sure I kept the actual layout as simple as possible. I converted all my photos to black and white (because there were some real shockers), added in the time using her time stamp that came with the mini kit, and then added a few cards, papers and some minimal embellishing.

This is the back side ...


And a few details ...

Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Kellie Stamps :: Coffee


Its so easy to make an insert when it is about my favourite subject and uses my favourite digital stamp set, COFFEE, from Kellie Stamps. I created some brushes in Photoshop and made some patterned papers, printed my photos directly from my phone and added a simple wood veneer heart. Voila!


Project Life :: Week 10

I do love a dramatic colour scheme and this week has it in spades. The addition of black really helps to balance out the darker photos and the yellow and blue add vibrant pops of colour. This week I'm using the April Citrus Twist Kits Pocket life kit. I really love using the colours of a kit to bring out the colours in my photos.


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Succulent Sunday


As you can see above, my succulent propagating experiment is going much better this time. I wish I could tell you what the magic secret is, but really, I'm still playing around with what works. I suspect it might be the time of year, the fact that I'm keeping them watered more regularly and I moved them out of the direct sunlight.

I have found it much easier to propagate from cuttings rather than from individual leaves like above. I enjoy the process so much but I am quite quickly running out of room!


Basic Photo Editing techniques in Photoshop

In an ideal world, every photo you took would be perfectly shot and exposed and wouldn't need any editing at all. But when you're taking photos for Project Life, things happen really quickly, usually with fairly unwilling subjects and not ideal lighting situations, so you're pictures can need a little help.


To be honest, I take 90% of my photos with my iPhone, edit using a few different apps and print directly to my wireless printer. But sometimes I do need to use Photoshop to edit my photos and there are a few ways I do that using adjustment layers.

1. Levels
Levels is perfect if your image just needs a slight adjustment to it's highlights, midtones or shadows.

2. Curves
If your photo needs more serious adjustment, then Curves is a really handy tool. More detailed and controlled than levels, I've rescued some shockers with Curves!

3. Hue and saturation
I find my iPhone photos can sometimes have really blown-out saturation, reds can be especially bad. So this is a handy tool for dialling the specific colours back a bit without losing the intensity of the rest of the photo.

4. Photo filters
Especially in winter, photos with a blue hue can happen a lot, using a warming photo filter can help to make them a bit more neutral. Cooling filters can also be helpful for indoor photos taken under tungsten lights that have turned a bit orange looking.

5. RadLab
Radlab from Totally Rad is a great tool for batch editing photos. You can use existing recipes or create your own to make sure all your photos have the same style.


6. Greyscale
Changing my photos to greyscale is one of my go-to techniques! I use it when a photo doesn't suit my colour-scheme for the week, or for when it is super colourful and busy to draw attention towards the subject matter. Once a photo greyscale, you can still add all the other adjustment layers.

Here's a quick video outlining these methods...

You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Photoshop is a great, if somewhat overwhelming, programme for photo editing. My best advice is to not be scared, have fun, play around and see what you can come up with! Let me know if you have any questions and I'll do my best to help!

Project Life :: Week 11


I added stamps from the new Kellie Stamps RAD and COFFEE sets, and printed directly from my phone. Time saver. All I had to do was add some patterned paper, stamps and embellishments from the February Studio Calico Document kit (my last one for a while) and I was done. Couldn't be simpler.


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Make your own filler cards with stamps!


Kellie Stamps had a little stamping challenge over on Instagram last weekend. Using any Kellie Stamps product (clear stamps or digital), you had to create your own filler card or pattern paper.

After digging through my (very large) stash, I created these with some of my favourite sets. I realised I haven't played with ink for quite a while and although it took me quite a few attempts to get back into the swing of things, I'm really pleased with the results. Practise makes perfect, I suppose!


Project Life :: Week 9


I'm really enjoying the bright pops of colour on this week's spread. The effect is so effective and pretty easy to replicate in a week where the photos are a bit bland. Just pick a colour (in this case bright pink) and add small pops throughout the spread (I used a bit of washi, some ink blending and a rubber accent). And of course, a heavy dose of stamping with the AM to PM set by Kellie Stamps.


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.

Kellie Stamps :: April Sneaks


Kellie Stamps is releasing some of my favourite clear stamp sets as digital sets this month, which means you can use them for all sorts of high-jinx. As much as I LOVE my clear stamps, the versatility of digital is pretty impressive. This month I created my own patterned paper, quickly put together a Project Life spread using just my phone and used my Silhouette to cut out a pretty intricate, glittery title.

SO. MUCH. FUN.


And if you need more convincing, Kellie Stamps is having a half price sale for Easter!

Use it all up, every last piece, and share the love

I almost killed this month's Pocket Life kit. Almost.

So I sat down amongst all my scraps and left-overs and made just a few more cards. Now my kit is officially killed and I have some filler cards I can keep, or share. In fact, my favourite way to "share" these leftovers is in a pocket letter. Which is exactly where these beauties are going. Who wouldn't love this happy mail!


Project Life :: Week 8

My photos this week had a very strong colour theme with pink, peach and black strongly featuring. So I chose papers and cards to enhance that while also adding a pop of yellow. Stitching, pink glitter alphas and circles, this week is one of my favs so far this year.


Here is the process video of how this layout came together... 
You can watch this video on YouTube or subscribe to my YouTube channel here.