Tuesday, June 28, 2016

How to Make Simple DIY String Art Embellishments- Week #25

This summer, I keep seeing string art popping up everywhere. It's fun to make and gives your home an instant cozy, handmade with love feel. String art is also something that's easy to create in scrapbook embellishment form. More than likely, you have all of the supplies on hand which makes this a budget friendly way to join in on the trend. The basic supplies consist of a permanent marker, chipboard shape, adhesive and string.

Step One: Choose the chipboard shape for your string art.

I chose to use these chipboard cats from Totem Poppets, but any chipboard shape will do. You will need to decide a base color for the chipboard. I chose black and used a permanent marker to color the chipboard pieces. You could easily use ink or paint as well and choose any color you wish.

Step Two: Add a strip of adhesive to the back of the chipboard.

A tape runner seems to work best. Double sided tape would also be a good choice. Run a small line of the adhesive down the center of the chipboard piece. As you wind the string, it will stick to the adhesive and not slip off. 

Step Three: Wind the String around the Chipboard Piece.

You may need to add more adhesive as you work. Using 2-3 strands of string, wrap it around the shape at uneven intervals until you are happy with the way it looks. I chose three colors of string to make the piece a little more interesting. 

It does help to have a prior idea of where your string art piece is going to be placed on the finished layout. It isn't a heavy or bulky embellishment, but it may be large depending on the size of the chipboard piece you chose. I love that each piece is unique and that they are easy to make. It took me about 10-15 minutes from start to finish to create this cat embellishment. You can easily adapt this technique for any chipboard shape. Consider refreshing older chipboard letters in your supplies.

Have you tried string art? Share links to your string art creations in the comments for this blog post.

Supplies Used:
Xyron Adhesive
Embroidery Floss
Permanent Marker
Patterned Paper by LilyBee Designs
Flowers by Recollections
Stickers by Evalicious
Letters by Basic Grey and American Crafts

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Fill Your White Space for a Great Layout - Week #23

Hello! It's Nancy back again with another fun and easy layout for week #23!  Today I'll be showing you how to fill your white space on your layout to make a fabulous layout, working with a template from the ebook Scrap Free Scrapbooking as my guide.
These templates take the headache out of creating the basic backbone of your layout, and help you save paper at the same time. I love them! Today I'm working with a design from cutting pattern #9 in the book.

The design is quite simple - it's two 5" x 7" blocks and a 4" x 12" strip. I substituted photos for the 5" x 7" blocks, in one case using two photos together to make a block.

But putting those basic elements in place left me with a lot of white space. Sometimes I don't mind white space - it is the easiest way to a clean and simple effect, after all! But on this layout it was bugging me. I wanted to fill it, but without making the layout too busy. How?

When we think of background stamps, we usually think of a large rectangular stamp with an all-over repeating pattern like dots, stripes, or similar design. But, despite its odd shape, this large Hero Arts map stamp is part of their background stamp line. 

Stamped in the upper left hand corner, the map stamp served two purposes. First, it somewhat filled the major area of white space on that quadrant of the layout. And then it also served as a grounding element so that the journaling ticket didn't look like it was floating in space. It also provided a visual frame for the phrase stickers. 

You might be wondering why I pushed the map and the ticket to the left, away from the large photo of the Lincoln memorial? Well, there's an open area between the Lincoln photo and the Washington Monument photo. That area was already contained on three sides by the photos and the patterned paper block. If I pushed the journaling ticket and map to the right, against the Lincoln photo, that area of space would be surrounded on all four sides. This is known as "trapped white space" and is visually disturbing to the eye. Laid out the way I made the design, there is a channel against the side of the Lincoln photo for that space to flow out of. 

At the bottom of the layout, I wanted to use these letter stickers but they barely fit in the available space. How did I space them to fit perfectly against the right edge of the page at the end of the word? Well, the ability to spell backwards helps! I started by laying my stickers from the end of the word, working right to left.

Even after the letter stickers were in place, there was too much white space on this part of the layout for my eye. So I used the map background stamp again to fill it in a bit, letting the stamp flow off of the bottom of the layout.

The stamps, phrase stickers, and alphabet create a nice diagonal line of black that leads the eye across the layout. I didn't notice this until after I was done, but it explains why this design of these elements felt "right" to me when I was creating and moving things around.
  • Tim Holtz idea-ology Seasonal Paper Pad
  • American Crafts Thickers Alphabet Stickers - Marquis Black
  • Colorbox Pigment Ink Pad in Black
  • Hero Arts US Map Background stamp
  • Tim Holtz Small Talk "Occasions" Stickers
  • Tim Holtz Journaling Tickets
  • Sakura Pitt Artist Pen - S Black
  • Jennifer Priest's Scrap Free Scrapbooking ebook

What creative ideas do you use to fill white space on your layouts?