Monday, April 14, 2014

ffc29 {all is calm}


hi guys!  back again with another Festive Friday project.  Such a lovely inspiration photo this week so you should definitely try to play along!


the photo is simple on the surface--just some candles and evergreens against a pretty mirror--but a longer look reveals much more.  there are so many things to spark inspiration: the colors (of course:), the shape of the mirror, the way it looks a little tarnished, the softness and peacefulness of the composition...i drew from all of those things to create my card.


i wanted to keep the soft colors, first of all, so i chose a light aqua background paper.  the stillness of the photo had a lot to do with my choice for the sentiment, too.  the background paper, sentiment sticker, and chipboard frame are all from Crate Paper's Sleigh Ride collection.


lastly, just a small "extra" touch with the wood bird against the white poinsettia and gold tulle.


while i was messing about with the idea for the card, i came across the "be still" sticker and liked it for the card.  but after trying a few different placements, i couldn't make it work.  no worries, though, i just turned it into the sentiment for a matching tag.


i apologize for the overexposed look of my photos this week...when there isn't a lot of contrast on the object i'm shooting, i seem to find a very thin line between overexposed and too dark and dull.


on a different note, i recently added a few Easter items to the Etsy shop and i'll be back here later this week to share them with you.  i've also got a few more cards that i haven't posted yet so i'll be sure to get those up, too.  i promise not to be a stranger this week!  i truly appreciate the comments you guys have been leaving, too.  you have no idea how much they really mean to me...thank you so much!

Friday, March 28, 2014

FFC28 {mason jar tags}


hello, hello!  how was everyone's week?  is anyone else completely OVER cold and flu season?  i am!  i feel like i have been sick for the whole of 2014 and it's time for it to just end.  on a happier note, there's a new Festive Friday challenge up today!


i LOVE this week's inspiration photo, don't you?  a mason jar, lace, and those pretty pinecones?  lovely, indeed!

want to show us how you were inspired by the photo?  we'd love to see!  you've got until April 9th to play along with this challenge; just visit the Festive Friday blog for details and much more inspiration--all the girls made gorgeous projects!  but before you pop over there, here's my take...


 i knew instantly that i wanted to go rustic with my project--and that i didn't want to make a card this week.  i've had the Papertrey Ink Friendship Jar stamp forever and haven't really used it so i got it out for this and came up with these tags.


i also wanted to feature some kind of pinecone on these but much to my shock and horror, i have NOTHING at all representative of a pinecone!  i could hardly believe it--no embellishments, no pretty paper, no good quality stamps.  looks like i'll be hunting for some pinecone-related materials in the near future.


the tags are relatively simple, in keeping with the photograph--sometimes less is more.  i stamped the jar on a manila shipping tag, punched 2 small holes on either side of the rim of the jar, and then tied my jute twine around it.


each tag is backed with a swatch of burlap and lace for a little rustic elegance!  when i'm making a set like this, i like to make each tag slightly different, but keep most of the same elements for a cohesive feel.  each small white tag has a different message and each tag has a different sticker--these offered some pops of color, too. 


and the finishing touch was another hint of lace and a tiny wood snowflake (i wish i'd had pinecones!).


this set will go on sale at Christmastime so i packaged it up in a muslin bag with another simple, coordinating tag.

and speaking of Festive Friday, i had the opportunity to meet up with our fabulous leader, Meredith MacRitchiefor the first time ever last week.  she and her family spent the week at Disneyland and, being that the resort is a mere 20 minute drive from me, the two of us decided to meet face to face.  it was a great visit, too, and the hours flew by as we walked around Downtown Disney and chatted nonstop about being mothers, some crafty stuff (though not much of that, surprisingly), and the magnificent Southern California weather.  she's a sun worshipper but i tried telling her she would actually start to miss the rain if she lived here; i don't think she believed me :)

have a great weekend!


Monday, March 24, 2014

hello lovely!


hello, Lovelies!  how are you all doing today?  i spent some time in the studio last week making a few cards and i have to say it was really fun!  i don't make too many cards anymore, certainly not like i used to, but i do go through phases where that's all i want to make and that happened last week.  i still have a lot of my supplies out with the hope of making a few more this week, but we'll see how that goes.


my first card was made from 2 different CP lines--Flea Market and On Trend. they pair really well together, so if you happen to have both collections, i highly recommend mixing and matching.  pink and black is a pretty classic combination and i added some strips of gold glitter for WOW factor.


and then there is this black and white bow...anyone else out there loving bows right now, too?  i think it took me a bit to get into them but now i'm hooked.


next up is another friendly card made from Flea Market products and doilies.  the wood bits are both from Studio Calico.  if i had a Crate Paper product wish, it would be for more tiny wood pieces like these--i buy them whenever i see them and hoard them from SC because they are so useful.


the white doilies are from my Etsy shop and later this week, i'll be listing 4" silver and gold foil doilies like the ones seen here--i'm so excited to finally be able to offer them in the shop!  {link coming soon!}

how happy is everyone that spring has arrived?!  it's such a beautiful time of year, isn't it?  while we haven't had a hard winter here at all, i know most of the rest of the US has, and the cold weather and snow are really over-staying their welcome. here's hoping for a lovely spring...

Monday, March 17, 2014

who am i? {dreamer, thinker, creative}


happy Monday, all!  i'm sharing a project today that i made for the Crate Paper blog.  it actually ran over there on Friday, but for anyone who didn't see it there, here it is.  it's a bit of an insight into my creative mind and i hope you enjoy it!



who am i?  what inspires me?  what do i want to accomplish?  those were the 3 questions in my mind as i contemplated my identity board.  i figured that if i was going to make this to use as a tool in my creative toolbox, it should probably answer those questions.  this is something i've wanted to do for a long time, but never found the time or motivation to do it.  luckily, this came up as an assignment for Crate and i kinda pounced on it!




i explored all sorts of avenues--i could make it about Rebecca Luminarias, the person.  i could make it about Rebecca Luminarias, wife and mother.  i could make it about Rebecca Luminarias, the creative.  or i could go big and make it about all of me!  the last choice was the loftier of options, but ultimately the one i went with.



in the beginning, the board was all over the place--i had stacks of my favorite personal photos, a binder full of torn out magazine pages for inspiration, a basket filled with pieces i've made that represent my paper crafting style, and the entire collection of Maggie Holmes' Styleboard. it was obvious right away that if i intended to use all of those items, i would need an identity ROOM, not just a board.  it was time to thin out my stash and focus on one aspect or theme that would somehow tie all of the elements together.



in the end, i drew inspiration from COLOR.  in my {extremely} humble opinion, i would say that, as a graphic designer/crafter, choosing colors is one of my strongest attributes.  when i'm drawn to an image, it is almost always because of the colors.  i tend to think in color above any other element of design.  so once i focused on a color scheme for my board, it all started to come together naturally.



i turned to my Etsy shop for inspiration.  i'm always thinking about it: how do i make it better, how do i set myself apart from the competition, how can i make Thurston Post a recognizable brand?  in terms of branding, i use color again: yellow, aqua, coral, and taupe-gray.  because Thurston Post has become a large part of my identity--both personally and creatively--i wanted to feature it prominently on my board.  it also happens that the Styleboard collection includes all of those colors, as does the newest Boden catalog.  oh, and because i'm mad for gold right now, i used that as an accent.




 with my color scheme chosen, i had to focus next on who i am.  well...who am i?  believe it or not, this question always stumps me.  aside from the obvious--mom, wife, woman--who am i?  what makes me different from the next mom-wife-woman?  we shouldn't all be lumped in that category together because we're all completely different.  so what makes me a unique mom-wife-mother?  who am i?



i thought about what i do, what i feel, my likes and dislikes, and my experiences, and came up with a short list of descriptive words.  these words best encompass my personality and speak of me as an individual.  i also had to put not perfect on there.  i have to remember that no one is perfect and i should stop beating myself up for being real instead of imperfect.  attaining perfection is impossible.  i make mistakes, sometimes i'm selfish and self-absorbed, and i'm a terrible conversationalist!  but i also have more admirable traits and strive to be a decent human being.  on top of that, i'm lucky to be loved :)



next, i thought about what i like as a designer/crafter, and specifically, what inspires me?  (obviously, color made the list!)




not only is this a list of my current favorites in designing, it is also my favorite piece on the board.  the bright yellow dress from the catalog (which is also a polka dot pattern) is surrounded by white space on the page (another favorite).  it made it easy to stack elements from Styleboard on top of it, covering a good portion of the dress, but leaving enough exposed to get the idea of the color, pattern, and style.  this vignette also features all of the colors i'm using...a hint of coral in the chipboard flower, the aqua journaling card, the yellow dress, and, because my typewriter has an old ribbon in it, the print is gray instead of black!


this was the very first vignette i created for the board.  i was going through the SB journaling cards and the coral ampersand cutout was sitting atop the black and white polka dot.  admittedly, i got a little weak-kneed about it, and then when i layered them on top of the aqua tag, it was like they were all meant to live together in harmony on my board.  the gold glitter strip was already there and i added a swatch of lace...there were 3 design elements i always go to when creating:  texture, color, and pattern.



i often find that i'm unable to choose a favorite style when it comes to design, crafting or even decorating the house.  i love the idea of being minimalist but it doesn't always work.  you can tell that this board, for example, is far from minimal!  i think it's all right to be versatile, though, and to like and be inspired by many styles.  when you let that happen, it opens the  door to fresh ideas.  




i couldn't leave out my affinity for music.  it has gotten me through many difficult times, inspired me in a million different ways, occupies the majority of space on my iPhone, and was likely the reason my husband and i fell in love!  with Styleboard's music embellishments--records, record players, and music notes--i had so much to choose from to create my humble homage to my favorite artists.  though not a musical element, i love the way the Venn Diagram overlay looks as a finishing touch--don't you think the circles mimic records and cds?




my family, of course, is a large part of who i am.  the decisions i make, the things that i do, and the desire to be successful are in large part because of them.  here again, i used photo overlays; the hearts on them are representative of the love i have for these three people and our life together.


these pieces lead me to the third question i was contemplating with this board...what do i want to accomplish?  like everyone, i have short and long-term goals.  i'd like to have a happy marriage, raise healthy and loving children, enjoy my career, and make Thurston Post, the brand, thrive.  each element of this board plays a role in achieving those goals. 



i even whipped up a quick greeting card to include here because when i began paper crafting, these were primarily what i made.  my style and abilities have evolved through the years, and i've expanded my repertoire to include things well beyond the realm of simple cards.  to be successful and to stay relevant in an ever-changing world--no matter what your chosen career path--you must do those things.  you must be willing to evolve.



lastly, i included a small piece of the "future" on the board.  the envelopes this model is holding immediately caught my eye.  they look like they were handmade or repurposed and i love the bold colors on the kraft background.  this idea is nothing new, but it's something i'd like to recreate in my own way.


from conception to fruition, this board took over 2 weeks to create.  it is something i will turn to again and again when i'm in a creative rut.  it's something that will, like me, change over time.  i will remove vignettes and make new ones; i will fall in love with a new color palette; the fashions will go out of style; something else will be the new GOLD and everyone will hate glitter (gasp!).  but bits and pieces of this board will always be reminders of who i am.  dreamer, thinker, creative.



Saturday, March 1, 2014

festive friday {ffc26 - chocolate cookies & holly}

happy Saturday, everyone!  i'm very happy that the weekend is upon us, how about you?  i've been a little under the weather for a few days and i'm hoping not to pass my coughs and sniffles onto the kids as we have a big week ahead.


yesterday was a festive friday and that means i have a card for you.  almost all of the supplies are from Crate's Bundled Up--which i barely used at Christmastime so i've happily left it within reach for some future FF makings.


doesn't this photo make your sweet tooth tingle?!  these cookies look delish (as my Grandma Peg would say) and i found myself drawing on the frosted holly leaves and berries for my card.


the itty bitty holly leaf stamp is from norajane--she offers all kinds of adorable little stamps in her shop.  you know i love anything itty bitty!

if you'd like to play along with the FF challenge this week, head on over to the blog for details and inspiration!

in other news...i've become a bit bored with the look of this blog.  as a member of the FF and CP design teams, i've recently been spending a lot more time browsing around online and i've seen so many gorgeous photos and blog layouts that have inspired me to start making changes.  i think it will be a gradual change--and won't affect you, the reader, at all, except to hopefully make thurstonpost a better place to spend a few minutes of your time!



in other news, i've been adding a few things to the Etsy shop, like these lovelies.  i've also been messing around with photography a lot.  sometimes it's been a great experience and other times, i want to chuck everything--camera, laptop, the whole 9 yards--into the dumpster because it's so aggravating--not to mention time-consuming!

Miss Anemone is turning 1 this week--and that's so hard to believe.  my sister is coming for a visit and arrives on her birthday, so i can't wait for that!  then we're headed to Vegas for the weekend...so yeah, it's about to get a little nuts around here, but it's the good kind of nuts!

lastly, my sweet Mr. Bagubian has turned into a turd!  i'm not sure what's up with him, but on Tuesday he put 4 remote controls, 2 blouses, 1 potholder, and a fast food ad in the toilet--all at the same time!  the next day, he loaded it up with his pants (which he took off of his body to put in), a full tube of toothpaste, a half-used roll of toilet paper and an empty one, some trash, and a plastic tissue box holder.  oh, and also on Tuesday, he threw dirt on Nemy and his grandmother, and then locked them out of the house!  he's usually a very nice boy...

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day, Violet, Hazel, & Iris!

 

Happy Valentine's Day!  i'm posting this at 10:30 Thursday night, so it's close enough, right?  there’s just something about this holiday that makes it so much fun to create for, isn't there?  i don't know if it's all of the pretty colors or the hearts or what, but i, for one, am smitten with this holiday!  and i’m lucky enough to have 3 little nieces--Violet, Hazel & Iris--to give extra special valentines to!



i was inspired to make library card pockets by all of the library images and ephemera found in the Love Notes collection.  i have some ready-made pockets but they're fairly flimsy and plain so i decided to make my own using some of the lovely LN patterned papers.  i’ll share a brief tutorial on how i made them--it's incredibly easy if you want to try it, too!



you’ll just need a few items--a card pocket to use as a template, patterned paper, a pencil, scissors, strong adhesive, and a bone folder.



start by taking apart the card pocket.  to do this, i slid a letter opener under the edges of the flaps that were glued down and opened them up.  once you've done that, trace a template on the opposite side of the patterned paper you want to use (seen here is "Crush").  **don't forget to make your scoring marks!**



cut out your envelope, fold, and adhere using the original card pocket as a guide.  given the heavier weight of the paper, you'll want to use a strong adhesive, like This to That double-sided red tape from American Crafts.  and when you're all done, you have a cute little library card pocket, all ready for decorating!



these were so much fun to embellish; my nieces have 3 different personalities so i didn’t want to make these all the same.  this one seems very girly to me and fitting for a 7 year old who likes to play dress up and LOVES to read.  with the big, beautiful rosette Standouts, you almost don't need to add anything, but i couldn't help myself and added the heart doily, some chipboard pieces, and just a touch of lace.  (have you noticed my affinity for adding "touches" of lace to EVERYTHING lately?!)





a row of glittery, see-through, and sticker hearts stitched to the library card adds texture but not a lot of thickness, so the card slides easily in and out of the pocket.  because the card pocket was chalkboard-black, i did want to add a hint of the same to the inside card and "love & kisses" seemed just perfect for that!




the next pocket was made from "Heartthrob,” and after looking over the chipboard pieces, i decided to go with a postal-theme.  (maybe it's also a little shout-out to my dad, who was a long-time postman :)  the letters, the mailbox, and the airmail stripes all looked so cute clustered together.  you can do as much or as little with these as you like.



a bit of glitter and doily snippets for the card insert tie into the design on the pocket.  my sister has designated a special color for each of her girls and Iris' is blue; the blue mailbox was perfect and i chose the aqua accent card from "Book of Love" to match.  Iris is only 18 months old so i just wanted to make something sweet for her! 



  for the third pocket, i used the gray side of "Sweetheart”--a fitting name for 4-year-old Hazel!  i brought the backside of the pattern (red & pink chevron) in with the little heart garland and really tried to use pops of the dark pink both on the pocket itself, and also the insert.  i wanted to keep some clear space on this pocket and a small cluster of embellishments at the top adds a lot of interest without being overwhelming.     




since there is just a touch of aqua in the badge on the pocket, i added the aqua heart sticker to the insert.  there are also a few more cut elements here from the "Book of Love" paper.  i tell you, those accent cards and tags go so far!



this was a really fun project and now that i've figured out how to make my own library card pockets (it wasn't difficult!), i know i’ll be making them often from now on.  i hope my 3 little sweeties will love receiving these as much as i loved making them!