Tuesday, March 24

Simply Scrapbooks Tip of the Month...

1, 2, 3...get Organized!!! What better way to start your Spring that to get your scrapbook area fresh and organized? Check out these amazing tips from Scrapsofmind.com!

Is your scrapbooking area organized?

Or do you sometimes avoid scrapbooking because you know you won’t be able to find something when you need it? Or better yet, you can’t even find a clear space on your desk to scrap?

My organizational level seems to rise and fall. At times, everything is a huge mess with no hope of finding what I need. Other times, my scrap area is neat and tidy, allowing me to create freely and stress-free.

In hopes of getting you to the second condition, I thought I’d share some general organizational tips I’ve picked up over the years:

1. Use Online Resources

There are so many great resources to help you become organized the online ones are the fastest, cheapest and easiest to find.

Just type “scrapbook organization” into Google and you will find a huge list of references. One of my favorites is Organized Scrapbooks (www.organizedscrapbooks.com). They have been around for awhile and have tons of ideas, free printable forms, and photos of organized spaces.

Another favorite is the Yahoo group called Scrappers Challenge (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ScrappersChallenge/). If you sign up for the e-mail list, the moderator routinely sends out reminders and little challenges to help you achieve or maintain scrapbook space organization. Members of the list (there are over 8,700!) submit specific questions and members help each other with suggestions or success stories. They also have a photo gallery you can peek into for ideas.

Another favorite place of mine is the Gallery at 2 Peas (http://twopeasinabucket.kaboose.com/). Many “Peas” have posted their organized scrapbook spaces and they usually include several photos, with detailed descriptions of how or why they organized as they did.

So when looking for ways to organize your scrap area, the internet is a wonderful place to start.

2. Divide and Conquer

Once you’ve checked your resources and have some great ideas in mind, I think the next step is to divide and conquer.

By that I mean to spend some time separating your stuff into categories, so you can get a fair idea of how much you have of each item, and how much space it takes up. For instance, gather all of your 12×12 paper and cardstock and, at least as a starting point, get it into stacks, pizza boxes, vertical holders, or some kind of grouping.

Put all your ribbon into one pile or shoebox (okay, 3 shoeboxes!). Gather your photos from all over your house and place them into one large Rubbermaid bin. The point of all this is to get a visual of what you have and how much of each type of item.

If you sort your scrapbook items by type (or whatever categories you choose), it will be so much easier to find things when it’s time to scrap.

3. How Do You Scrap?

I think this is one of the most important questions you can ask yourself.

Think about your own individual process (NOT the way Becky or Ali or Lisa B. does it, but YOURS). Do you design your layouts based on the colors? Then your supplies should be organized by color, so when you need blue and white embellishments for a page, you go to the blue section and the white section.

Do you tend to scrap by sticking to all one designer’s paper, embellishments and letters? Then organize your stash by designer. I noticed this was the “method to my madness,” so why did I have Basic Grey baby paper with baby stuff and Basic Grey letters with letter stickers? Now I keep everything I have by Basic Grey in one container.

If you sort your stuff the way you scrap, it will be so much easier to find things, and so much more intuitive to put things away when you buy them.

4. Purge…Then Buy Containers

As you sort your things into piles that make sense for YOU, purge as you go along.

I’m sure you have some paper that is no longer your style, stickers representing a sport or hobby your family no longer participates in, etc.

While you’re organizing is the perfect time to purge. Why bother taking time and making space for something you’re never going to use? I recently purged my scrapbook supplies and ended up with a box of stickers and papers for kids crafts, and a bag I donated to a grateful friend who was just starting to scrap.

Does your local scrapbook store hold “garage sales”? What better way to get rid of your unwanted items and earn a little money…perhaps to buy new supplies that inspire and excite you.

Once you’ve cleared out unwanted supplies, and you have a visual of how much stuff you need to store, start gathering containers or utilizing more effectively the ones you already have.

5. Go Vertical!

Nothing has changed my scrapbook space organization more than “going vertical” with my paper storage.

Cropper HopperBefore, I had my 12×12 papers stored in a horizontal paper rack I bought, used, when an LSS closed, combined with accordian style folders with handles. When I saw these Vertical Paper Holders by Cropper Hopper, a light dawned in my head.

I said to myself, “If you change your paper over to those vertical holders, you can save so much room, cut down on the dust, and flip through your papers much more easily.”

So I switched all of my papers and cardstock over - I “went vertical” - and it was the best thing I ever did. They only cost about $5 to $7 each and are well worth the investment.

6. Go Big!

One thing I’ve learned the hard way is: When buying scrapbook storage items, always buy bigger or more than you think you’ll need. You WILL outgrow it if you buy too small.

Here is an example: When I first started scrapping, I bought a Creative Memories Journaling Mate Case to hold my often-used pens and tools. These are my “right hand items” which literally sit to the right of my desk within easy reach because I use them on every layout or project. Well, as time went on, I collected more pens, another pair of scissors, and added a second pen case. Needless to say, as my expertise in the craft grew, and my collection of craft knives, paper piercers, mini-staplers, erasers, file sets, etc. continued to expand, every small storage item I added to the mix was outgrown.

I’ve now finally settled on a Cropper Hopper Flat Pack, which holds all my adhesives, erasers, staples, etc. and a mini ToteAlly Cool Mini Tote for my pointy tools and pens.

Cropper Hopper

If I had just “gone big” in the first place, I could have saved myself a lot of time in reorganizing, shopping and adding small caddies not to mention the money I would have saved. Just cut to the chase and buy the larger storage item from the beginning because I guarantee you’ll fill it up someday.

7. Purge Your Packaging

Depending on how you store your supplies, one great space saver may be to unpackage your supplies like I have. I keep my themed embellishments in the ScrapRack (this photo is from the Scraprack website):

scrap rack

I know many people use similar systems that utilize page protectors of some sort, whether Crop In Style binders with 12×12 slotted pages, or a regular office binder with 8.5 x 11 page protectors.

When it dawned on me that my stickers and embellishments were being shielded inside the plastic protector anyway, I asked myself, “Why not take them out of the packaging they came in?” I now have them filed in their protectors without the packaging and, wow, what a space-saver that has been.

Take one look at your full trash can after you purge all the packaging, and you’ll see how much room you were wasting just to “store” packaging.

I’ve heard one objection to removing items from their packaging is that, if you submit pages for publication, you need the packaging for your materials lists. A solution would be, before you toss the packaging, to use a Slickwriter or similar marker to write the pertinent information on the plastic sheet, back of the sticker sheet, or on a sticky note that you file in the sleeve with the item.

Well, there are 7 of my organizing tips and tricks. I hope you are able to put them to use, and organize your scrapbook space for maximum creativity!

Erika writes the Scrapbook Obsession Blog where she shares more scrapbook organization ideas as well as her great scrapbook layouts and other scrapbooking tips.

Other articles you might like:

Increase your Scrapbooking Profile by becoming a Guest Writer on Scraps of Mind

Scrapbook Organization on a Budget

Friday, March 20

Upcoming Events Reminder...

Here is a quick rundown of all the upcoming events you don't want to miss!!!

  • Scrap Therapy Crop, Saturday, March 28th, 10am-Midnight
  • Blog Challenge Entries Due, March 31st by Midnight
  • Simply Scrapbooks Yard Sale-Saturday, April 4th @ 11am-5pm
  • Class Kick Off- Saturday, April 4th @ Noon-3pm (during Yard Sale!)
For more information on any of these events browse the previous posts. This is going to be an exciting month!!!

Wednesday, March 18

March Blog Challenge Coming to and End...

Don't forget that March Blog Challenge entries are due March 31st by Midnight. We can't wait to see all your incredible talent!

Saturday, March 14

Exciting News...

We at Simply Scrapbooks would like to toot the horn of our own Candra George. Not only is Candra a much loved class instructor at Simply Scrapbooks...she is also practically famous! If you didn't know, Candra has been apart of the Prima Marketing Design team for quite some time now. Candra also creates and teaches classes for Tattered Angels. We have some very exciting new news that Candra has also joined the Anna Griffin design team and has even had some of her beautiful designs featured on Anna Griffins QVC show "Elegant Crafting with Anna Griffin".

Here is the exciting story we got from Candra herself:

I met Anna Griffin in the parking lot of the Anneheim Hilton at CHA 2009 while with the Simply Scrapbooks crew. As you can imagine I was completely STARSTRUCK! I have loved Anna Griffins designs since I was little...way before scrapbooking even. I spoke with her at her booth the next day and she took my card mentioning she had been looking for someone like me. (I nearly fainted but figured she probably meets thousands of people at these events.) Four days later I got an email from her team asking me to forward some of my work...the next day they called and asked me to be apart of the team! As if that wasn't enough, Anna Griffin thought I would be great to try out designing for her QVC show, "Elegant Scrapbooking with Anna Griffin". She loved what I created and used it immediately on the show!!! I admit I cried while watching it on QVC at 3 in the morning. It felt very surreal and yet validating to see the work I had created in her own hands on TV. I am now official apart of the Anna Griffin design team of 9 and 3 designers for the show (including myself!). The next show airs on Tuesday, March 24th at 3pm pacific time. I am looking forward to a future with Anna Griffin and hoping to soon be teaching "as seen on QVC" classes at Simply Scrapbooks! :)

We are so excited for Candra and happy to share her wonderful news. She is extremely talented and a huge asset to our store. Congratulations! You deserve it!

You can check out Candra's Blog: My Creative Reality here.

Monday, March 9

Hot new Provo Craft from CHA!!!

We are going Provo Craft Crazy this month! Check out our newest arrivals...

Your Story
Create personalized books, albums, and journals with ease. Your Story is a thermal book binder with unlimited versatility. Create you own scrapbook books that are sealed and protected from damage. Produces a beautiful, professional completed product. You just have to see it yourself!

Glass Etching products for your Cricut!

Glass etching is now a breeze with Cricut! Cut unique designs using your Cricut machine and Cricut Vinyls...then permanently etch them onto a glass surface with the new glass etching cream. You'll have the ability to create beautiful etched designs in just minutes.

Brand New Machine from Cricut! Cricut Create Personal Electronic Cutter!!!
The Cricut Create™ Personal Electronic Cutter combines the portability of the original Cricut® machine with the functionality of the Cricut Expression™ machine. The Cricut Create machine is the same size as the original Cricut machine, yet it allows cuts from 0.25" up to 11.5" on a 6" x 12" cutting mat. The machine also includes an eight-way directional blade, Portrait mode (to cut taller images), Fit to Page mode (to cut the largest cut possible), Auto Fill mode (to mass produce cuts), Center Point function, and Flip function. An improved display screen and sleek design add greater style and convenience. (available now on special order!)

Cricut Stamping Solutions Shape Cartridge with Stamp Kit
The Cricut Cuttables Deluxe Stamp Kit has everything you need to create stamps with your Cricut machine. The kit contains the Stamping Solutions cartridge and keypad overlay, 1 sheet of stamp material, and 4 acrylic blocks: 1" x 1", 2" x 2", 3" x 3" and 6.5" x 6.5". The blocks are transparent so you can perfectly place your stamps.

New Cricut Solution Cartridges! Use these cartridges with the Cricut Vinyl to create beautiful custom wall decor for your home!
solutions images

  • Kitchen/Bath Solutions-In this Cricut Solutions cartridge, all the ingredients come together to help you create a beautiful kitchen or bath. Created to add a bit of sophistication to your life, this cartridge is filled with images, words, and borders specifically designed for the kitchen and bathroom. Cut shapes in vinyl or use as a stencil for painting easily to redecorate your home.
  • European Decor Solutions-This Cricut Solutions cartridge recreates the art and style of old world Europe. Its beautiful designs bring to mind the antique textiles and furniture found in grand estates and museums. Designed to bring elegance into your home, its borders, icons, and phrases can be combined to add a bit of timeless beauty to any room.
Cricut Color Inks

These inks will allow users to not only cut with Cricut machines, but also draw the shapes, letters, and phrases found on the designer Cricut cartridges.

The Cricut Color inks are small 3" markers. Users can remove the blade assembly of any Cricut machine (such as the Cricut Expression™ and the original Cricut™ Personal Electronic Cutter™) and easily insert the ink. Users can then load the paper and cutting mat, make a selection from the keypad, and press the cut button. The Cricut machine will then draw the selection with the inserted ink color. This technique is convenient for card making and other crafts, and looks fantastic when combined with Cricut cutouts.

The inventive Cricut Color inks will be available in four sets with five inks (markers) each. The Primary set will include one each of red, orange, yellow, green, and blue inks. The Basic set will include three black and two brown inks. The Fashion set will include brown, green, purple, blue, and pink inks. The Sophisticated set will include silver, brown, maroon, navy blue, and teal inks.

Cricut Embossing Folders

Cricut Embossing: Now you can create personalized embossing folders using any Cricut design!

1. Cut design from plastic sheet using Cricut machine.

2. Adhere design inside blank embossing folder.

3. Use embossing folder in Cuttlebug Die Cutter and Embosser.

Sunday, March 8

Basic Grey all year long!!!

Basic Grey has created it's gorgeous new Page of the Month classes using the latest and greatest of everything Basic Grey. This is your time to create beautiful "All about Me" pages. We are sometimes so busy recording the events of our children and friends that we forget to step in the lime light ourselves. Basic Grey wants to put you in front of the camera for once and spotlight the wonderful things about you and your life on your pages.

Every month the layout subject will change. Basic Grey will cover themes such as, "My Favorite Things" to "And This I Believe", to even "A Letter to Myself" at the end of the year. These are sure to be creative, thought provoking, honest pages about the most important person in your life...you! This is a creative adventure you don't want to miss.

Basic Grey Classes will be taught by Carrie Martin who will be happy to humour you along your creative journey. Carrie will be sure to feature fun techniques with an interesting use of your favorite Basic Grey product.

Carries next class titled, "A Day in the Life" is scheduled for
Tuesday, March 24th at 6pm-9pm
Click here to sign up now!

Keep your eye out for the April class!!!

Saturday, March 7

Silhouette Club Crop!

If you haven't yet heard the buzz, Silhouette Club is our team of ultra savvy Silhouette extraordinaries! Join the club to participate in fun projects while at the same time learning the best user techniques, tips, and tricks for your Silhouette usage. If you are frustrated and needing help, or just curious as to what the Silhouette is all about...this is the club for you!

To share the excitment, the Silhouette club will be hosting a free crop Sunday, March 22nd from 11am-5pm. You do not need to be a member of Silhouette club to participate. Just bring your crop supplies and head on down. Club instructors will be on hand all day to give demo's, and answer any questions you may have. Don't forget to ask how joining Silhouette club can benefit you. Hope to see you there!

silhouette how it works

Thursday, March 5

Get your designs published...

Here are some tips we gathered in the blog world about how to get your layouts, cards, projects, and more published. Let your beautiful work be seen! You deserve to feel like a star for all your hard work. :) If you do get published be sure to let us know so we can share in your excitement!

  • Creating Keepsakes
  • Simple Scrapbooks
  • Paper Crafts
  • Digital Scrapbooking

To submit to any magazine listed above email your designs to: simplesubmissions@gmail.com

  • Scrapbook Trends

Email to submissions@scrapbooktrendsmag.com

Here are some helpful tips to remember:

1. Include your name, email, phone number, and links to any of your blogs or online galleries with your submission. They will need to easily contact you if, and when you are chosen.

2. Include detailed instructions with your submission.

3. List all products and even tools used for your project. This is a publication must!

4. To send to multiple magazines at once with out the addresses viewable to the reader, add additional addresses to the BCC field of your email.

5. Check out publishing sites to see exactly what type of themes and projects they are currently looking for.

6. Don't get discouraged! Publishers usually keep your layouts for up to a year and may want to use it at another time in the future.

7. Keep your project. If a magazine is going to publish your project they will ask you to physically send it to them. This is to prevent publishing at other companies during there preview. Your project will be returned to you the next month.

Good luck to all of you!

Wednesday, March 4

March Blog Challenge!!!

For our March Challenge we would like to see what all you creative ladies can do with Bisous Zoo PDQ papers and chipboard. If you haven't grabbed up some of this yummy paper you are missing out! The PDQ papers are artful, bold, exciting and beautiful. Check out this amazing album made by Bisous Designer Sue Hagerman using the PDQ papers, chipboard and more.

Ok ladies, so your challenge is this...Use 2 or more papers of your choice from the Bisous Zoo PDQ line to create a project, card, layout, or anything else you can think up. Contest begins today. Entries must be recieved by Tuesday, March 31st at Midnight. Good luck scrappers! We can't wait to see what you think up.

Be sure to check out the Bisous Zoo website for inspiration at http://www.bisous.biz/main.htm

*For more information refer to the previous Blog Challenge Q&A post.
You may want to bookmark for future reference.

Simply Scrapbooks Blog Challenge Q&A...

Simply Scrapbooks is proud to announce our very first Blog Challenge! We will be hosting a Blog Challenge designed to inspire you and all our other readers while giving you the chance to win a fabulous prize package every month! The challenges will be based on a new and exciting designer, line, product, tool, or anything else we can think up to get those creative juices flowing.

Challenge Questions and Answers:

How do I submit my project?
Projects may be submitted in person at the store with name and contact info on the back or by emailing them to iscrapbook@hotmail.com, subject March Challenge. Please try to keep pictures small, around 600px.

How many times can I enter?
Enter as many times and as many projects as you like! We are so pleased to see your designs and will even occasionally ask to use your name and work as inspiration on our site to share with others.

Does my entry have to be a layout?
Any paper crafting project following the challenge guidelines will be acceptable. We want to see all of those beautiful cards, alter-projects, mini-books, layouts, and anything else you can think up.

Do you post all the entries including the monthly winner?
We will absolutely post a slide show of all the monthly entries. As for the monthly challenge winner, they will receive a special write up featuring them and their project.

What will I win?
Monthly Challenge winners will receive an awesome prize package chock full of goodies! Winner of prize package will also include a $20 Simply Scrapbook shopping spree!
(*prize packages are subject to change)

Forward any further questions to iscrapbook@hotmail.com
You may want to bookmark this post for future reference.
Good Luck!!