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Getting started with Little by Little

Getting started with Little by Little // scrapbook page by Kirsty Smith

I’m delighted to share a scrapbook page from Kirsty Smith to kick off a look at what other designers are making with Little by Little. I’d love to see what you’re making too! If you’re posting pictures on social media, add the hashtag #AClittlebylittle. And now over to Kirsty for a quick dive into the new collection!

It was such a wonderful treat to be able to work with Shimelle’s beautiful new collection, Little by Little. I was really struck by the versatility of this collection: the colours are wonderful and I was able to select a whole range of complimentary hues from a wide palette of options. To stay in keeping with my photo, I chose shades of blue, purple, pink and green; the range of shades and designs was just made for layering!

I used patterned paper to frame my photo in layers, opting for one of the boxes from the cut-apart sheet for my journaling. I love the paper with the large chevron as it has such a lovely textural mix of colours and patterns. I used the chevron to point towards the central design.

Getting started with Little by Little // scrapbook page by Kirsty Smith

I love the floral motif that moves through Little by Little, as it’s subtly present in lots of different elements of the collection, creating a delicate, whimsical feel. To complement my page I introduced the floral die cut word ‘happy’ (from the die-cut pack) and matched it with the scripted word ‘adventure’. I adore anything that involves a hand-written look and so I love this page of foam Thickers in a brush-lettered style.

There are so many lovely elements in this collection to add the final embellishment for a scrapbook layout. I punched hearts out of patterned paper to scatter over the page, and layered stickers in little clusters. I am a big fan of including cameras on pretty much every page I make, as I feel it’s so relevant to scrapbooking, and one of my favourite parts of the collection are the puffy camera stickers. They’re so cute and petite, but add a brilliant splash of detail. I love the enamel dots too!

Getting started with Little by Little // scrapbook page by Kirsty Smith

Overall this is such a beautiful collection to work with, and it has the potential to work for layouts of so many different themes. I hope you will enjoy using Little by Little as much as I am!

A Little by Little B-Side Paper

Scrapbooking with B-Sides // Scrapbook Page by Shimelle Laine

B-side papers are something I think about throughout a collection but they are actually the very last thing we finalise. Sometimes we have everything laid out, ready to go, and it can only then become obvious that there isn’t enough of this colour or a smaller version of that motif. But some of my favourites are the b-sides designed to be a super quick way to a beautiful layout.

Little by Little patterned paper by Shimelle for American Crafts

Okay, I love the multicoloured feathers but I admit it is perhaps not the most universal patterned paper ever designed in the history of the world. That’s okay. But the b-side to this paper (called Delightful Journey) is one of those pages made with speed and ease in mind. The pastel shades of the colour palette are included in a geometric pattern that all revolves around one quarter of the page. I love working with thirds and quarters on the 12×12 page because it works so beautifully no matter what you add to the composition. Just start on that line and build. It will work!

Scrapbooking with B-Sides // Scrapbook Page by Shimelle Laine

You can turn this paper in any direction and start adding somewhere on that line that separates the colourful section from the solid aqua background. I love a layered stack of papers, stickers, and die-cuts to surround the photo on that quarter line. And in this case, I used that old favourite – the loose diagonal line of embellishment – but included my journaling and title as part of the diagonal line. Completed page in such a short amount of time!

All the supplies here are from Little by Little, including both sets of Thickers, the sticker book, the 6×12 sticker sheet, 6×6 paper pad, wood buttons, embossed die-cuts, and puffy stickers. But of course the patterned paper works with the embellishments you love and have to hand as well.

I hope you enjoy using this paper too and would love to see what it inspires you to make!

Exploding Heart Scrapbook Pages with Little by Little

Exploding Heart Page Design :: Scrapbook Page by Shimelle Laine

We love a little heart explosion across a scrapbook page around here, and there’s literally a patterned paper made with that look in mind within the Little by Little collection. It’s called Evolving Love and has a pink background with dozens of colourfully patterned hearts ready and waiting to be cut out and scattered across your next scrapbook page.

Exploding Heart Page Design :: Scrapbook Page by Shimelle Laine

I used it with this collection’s bold floral, Cultivate Joy, framing the photos with some of the yellow b-side patterns for a bit of contrast against all those multi-coloured patterns. But of course, your heart explosion will look unique when you choose a different coloured or pattern for your background as well as which of the hearts you choose to scatter!

For more on that five-point palm exploding heart technique in a scrapbook sense, check out these two posts from the archives:
Exploding Heart Page Design :: Scrapbook Page by Zinia Amoiridou
Exploding Heart Page Design :: Scrapbook Page by Heather Leopard

And please share if you use Little by Little to create your own heart explosion or another heart-filled look! Leave a link in the comments any time or share on social media with the hashtag #AClittlebylittle.

CHA 2017: On the show floor with Little by Little

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

Here we are at my little corner of the American Crafts booth, with Little by Little ready to welcome the buyers who attend the CHA Creativation 2017 Trade Show.

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

We’ve wrapped books in patterned paper and framed some of the motifs from the collection, and there’s a big wreath backdrop behind me ready for plenty of selfie fun throughout the show.

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

When we’re not chatting or taking said selfies (shame), I usually scrapbook right there so I can show how the products come together to create a range of looks. This time I’m also painting a few little animals for store special events, so look for a chance to win something like this little bear from your favourite scrapbook shop, perhaps!

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

So much of Little by Little is filled with tiny nods to children’s literature, so I stole that chance to make a Peter Pan page while I was here!

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

But this was probably my favourite way to display the samples: that butterfly frame. Of course, when in America, one must do a Target run just to see what last-minute items are absolutely required for the booth. I think this one was required, and it’s from the Dollar Spot, so always a win!

CHA Creativation 2017: Little by Little by Shimelle for American Crafts

And of course Amy has a camera drone! So here’s the AC designer crew at the end of the show from the sky!

Thanks for taking a look: up next, scrapbook pages with Little by Little!

Counting Down to CHA 2017: and then we whispered 'Go Now...Go!'

 use a random embellishment // scrapbook page by Sheena Rowlands

Go Now Go came out at the end of last summer, so it still feels quite new to me on my desk even if we were designing it at almost this time last year. Inspired by our big backpacking adventure (which I cannot believe was six years ago now) as well as autumn in the beautiful park at my doorstep, I originally imagined this collection with the name ‘Round the World’. When we scheduled our trip, that’s what travel agents and the like call the sort of plane tickets we booked: RTW. You pick a direction and just keep flying in that direction until you return to your home airport again, choosing the cities and countries you visit along the way. It’s a thing that is always at the back of my mind, just waiting for the right opportunity, because there is such potential to never have a remotely similar adventure twice! But once we had all the designs in front of us, RTW didn’t just seem right. It fit the few overtly travel-themed items but left the rest feeling like outcasts, and I don’t want to have lonely overlooked papers getting sad in the corner. With a bit more thought, I was drawn to something I’d heard whispered many, many times. Go now go is the whisper that starts the very beginning of a TV show I watched over and over and over again through my teens and twenties. It became a lovely little voice I would hear in my head when I was lacking the confidence I needed for whatever life was presenting. It linked to travel. It linked to running in the crunchy autumn leaves. It was all about the moment and not about the rehashing the past or trying to control the future. Whatever it is you need to do, just go. Now. Go. Once it hit me, it was that through and through and I would accept no substitute.

Anyway, enough of me rambling about collection names. It’s nearly time for CHA, and I’m delighted to share a Go Now Go page created by contributing designer Sheena Rowlands with you today!

 use a random embellishment // scrapbook page by Sheena Rowlands

Over the past few years I’ve noticed some new paper collections have some more unusual shapes in their die cut packs and sticker sheets, usually they just gather at the bottom of my die cut box but this photo had me digging them back out to use. Cacti on an English autumnal layout?! why not, their colour & shape fit perfectly with my outdoor theme and the Go Now Go patterned papers I used. I’ll certainly be more open to random embellishments in the future.
- Sheena

I’d love to see what you’ve been making with Go Now Go! Share a link in the comments or add the hashtag #ACgonowgo to your posts on Instagram so we can all see.

My bag is packed – next time I write, it will be from Phoenix! See you soon, Creativation!

Counting Down to CHA 2017: Handmade Cards with Starshine and Go Now Go

Handmade Cards with Starshine by May Flaum

Contributing Designer May Flaum recently shared a 1-2-3 approach to card making on her blog, with plenty of Starshine stickers to embellish. I love her take on how simple it can be to make your own cards, so I followed her steps but changed the collection. In just a short little window of time, I had three cards ready to send, so I know this will work with your stash favourites too.

Handmade Cards with Starshine by May Flaum

May’s 1-2-3 approach starts with a simple combination of choosing one patterned paper to become the card, one sticker or embellishment to become to the focal point, and a matted square between the two.

 Handmade Cards with Go Now Go  // handmade cards by Shimelle Laine

The only thing I did differently when working with the Go Now Go collection to add a word strip sticker below the compass. That compass square comes from a cut-apart sheet of paper, and that washi-styled background paper is one of my favourites for cutting into journaling boxes.

Handmade Cards with Starshine by May Flaum

For card two, May sticks with the patterned paper background but looks within a collection for something that has a frame, like the chipboard stickers in the case of this square. She still uses a big sticker or die-cut as a focal point, but dresses it up with things like her collection of beautiful sequins and buttons.

Handmade Cards with Go Now Go // handmade cards by Shimelle Laine

There’s a chipboard sticker frame in the Go Now Go collection too, so that was an easy choice to follow her formula. Both the bicycle and the floral washi tape stickers are from the sticker book, and instead of sequins and paint, I used a few enamel dots and some gold mist.

Handmade Cards with Starshine by May Flaum

It’s step three in that 1-2-3 card making process when May lets loose with a more collaged look that can incorporate leftover stickers, die-cuts, and paper scraps. Starting with kraft cardstock instead of another sheet of patterned paper makes it easier to see all the elements she selected and layered across the front of this card. Plenty of sparkle from glitter glue and sequins makes for something very special!

Handmade Cards with Go Now Go // handmade cards by Shimelle Laine

I kept that kraft cardstock look for the background and piled on pieces from the cut-apart papers, labels punched from patterned paper scraps, die-cuts, stickers, and chipboard, before sprinkling with more gold mist. May used her sewing machine to add the stitched frame, but I cheated and used a stitched border stamp design to try something just a little different. As soon as I finished this card, I knew exactly who would receive it: a friend who always has a serious longing to be in New York!

Handmade Cards with Starshine by May Flaum

I love May’s philosophy on making cards like this, and following the steps made it a much more streamlined process than my usual card making endeavours! I always seem to forget how paper works for at least an hour if I start on a card rather than a scrapbook page, but not this time. All three were done in a flash and with very minimal mess to tidy. I think this process works well in both directions: if you have a collection you love and want to use in every way, make a set of cards you will send to others, whether they be for an occasion or just for little notes. If you prefer to work with scraps, you could choose a nice combination to use then create sets either to write and send yourself or to bundle together and give as a gift. Thank you, May!

And thank you for your love of Starshine. If you have a favourite Starshine project you’d like to share, please leave a link in the comments. I’d love to see! Tomorrow we’ll talk a bit more about Go Now Go, while I get my bag packed for CHA 2017!

Counting Down to CHA 2017: Looking out to the Starshine

can you scrapbook with just paper? // scrapbook page by Wendy Goodman

Four collections in brings us to last year’s CHA show and the release of Starshine. Every collection is fun to develop but this one was extra special. It took all my childhood dreams and styles and mixed them with my current perspective. I loved that there was just the teensiest touch of Lisa Frank inspiration from my junior high days of pen pals and sticker books nestled below layers of other things that became more important as I grew up. In the original pitch for this collection, I told the team I wanted to turn 2001: A Space Odyssey into a paper collection. It turned out to be a more outlandish request than the mix of coffee cups and rocket ships, but when we broke it down, it started to click. There’s a red hexagon b-side pattern inspired by all the white bars on the space craft. There’s a colour blocked pattern that turned out to be super useful for layering (because you could have all the colours and a variety of patterns all on one sheet you could easily cut into small pieces) that was actually inspired by the lunch trays in the film. I will stop or else I will tell you the layers of backstory to every single piece in this collection and that might just get a little much. Suffice to say, the girl who spent her summers learning about space travel was ridiculously happy to create a paper line that embraced those stargazing dreams.

We’re going to spend two days talking Starshine in this CHA countdown, and today I’m so happy to share with you a project from guest artist Wendy Goodman. She’s done something that always makes me giddy: a layout without pre made embellishments – just paper. Paper, and in this case, a stamp. I’m not the only one who needs to get a bit more use from her roller stamps, right? That’s what I thought.

Starshine roller stamp and notepad from Shimelle & American Crafts

I loved the challenge of using only paper on my layout. The Starshine collection was perfect for a page about a moment at the beach I want to remember. I brought out my favorite punches and went to town punching out colorful patterned paper circles and arranging them in a grid. All of the circles were stitched down and I snuck in some vellum stars. Other punches I used included the label, tab, star, butterfly and even tiny circle punches to create faux ‘enamel’ dots. I cut a globe and camera from the papers. The globe happened to be exactly the right size to match the other circles.

can you scrapbook with just paper? // scrapbook page by Wendy Goodman

I used my favorite phrase stamps on the labels. I arranged my paper embellishments equally around the page for balance. I even cut my title out after tracing the letters onto cardstock. I love that even though I only used paper, this page still rings true to my style of using a white background, grid design, and the primary focus is on the photo and story of this adventure at the beach.

can you scrapbook with just paper? // scrapbook page by Wendy Goodman

I love how there is so much detail in Wendy’s page without needing to spend a fortune on embellishments or feel like her page is filled with things assembled by others, which creates a never ending mental battle for me when crafting. I love all the pretty embellishments in packages! Must buy more! But then I also like it when I spend less on stuff and make more by hand, even if it’s just cutting things out from plenty of different patterned papers. So which side wins? It changes by the day.

scrapbook page and process video by Shimelle Laine
There’s basically a little bit of every collection in this layout! I love the rocket motifs from True Stories with the papers from Starshine.

And both these videos feature lots of Starshine to create the pages, along with things like vellum and Distress Inks. We’ll take a look at some more Starshine fun tomorrow, but please don’t hesitate to leave a link to any Starshine projects of your own in the comments below!

Today’s Guest Artist: Wendy Goodman loves big cups of coffee, travel adventures, and superheroes. You can find more from Wendy on Instagram and her blog

Counting Down to CHA 2017: A bit of Christmas Magic

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

With True Stories in the spring, collection three arrived for the holiday season and brought a bit of nostalgia along for the fun. Christmas Magic was actually named after my childhood puppy! This is the most limited colour palette I’ve worked with in the paper collections: predominantly evergreen, brick red, and cream, but actually you’ll find some shades of blue and turquoise in there too. Plus silver and gold! I think my favourite part of this collection was two vellums – one with stars and one with snowflakes, each with a bit of special shimmer. But I also love the stories told in the ephemera and sticker motifs: the Christmas records my family would pull out year after year, the toys inspired by the look of Christmas TV specials, like Rudolph and Frosty. I also loved a product that was very different for me: a die set to cut paper chains to put on the Christmas tree. The challenge was to make a set that would have an interesting pattern even with plain cardstock (so you’d feel better about cutting plenty!) while also making them possible to assemble without any adhesive. Last Christmas, I made lots of these with crafters in pubs across London, and I got such a thrill from an email from someone who used the die with a Brownie troop to make seemingly endless paper chains to decorate their community centre.

Today contributing designer Leigh Ann Odynski has a beautiful page to share with you, featuring Christmas Magic.

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

_My design for this Christmas scrapbook page was inspired by Heather and Laureen who shared their pages here at the last online crop weekend.

I love how the quilted look works with the Christmas Magic Shimelle collection. To start off, I took the 6×6 Christmas Magic paper pad and picked out patterns in my layout colors. Turquoise, red, and black and white. Try for a variety of pattern styles. All over, tone on tone, text, and scenes are some of the patterns I chose. Punch four to eight squares of each pattern and then trim them all into triangles.

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

To lay them out on the page, I started at the very top left corner, by placing a triangle even with the edges of that top corner and then flipping it over. You can line up all the triangles quite easily in this way. A T-Square ruler helped me keep the horizontal line of the diamonds lined up.

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

After your triangles are all glued down with a tiny dab of glue, then you can stitch as shown, through all the triangles. I chose to keep the embellishing to a minimum so that the patterned papers and the quilted design are the focal point of the page. A 3×4 photo and snowflakes cut from the patterned papers, new Go Now Go enamel dots and some die cut pieces are all you need to finish out the page. You can add a few drops of Mr Huey’s “Dewey” color to coordinate with the colors in this line if you like!

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

Notice how I kept the embellishments in three small areas around the page. They form a triangle, but are kept close to the diamond shapes of patterned paper.

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Leigh Ann Odynski

I love how Leigh Ann’s tiny triangle technique could be used to make gorgeous Christmas cards out of the smallest scraps. I’m trying to tell myself to let go of some Christmas scraps I’ve kept for years, but this idea is not helping that effort, I’m afraid!

Christmas Magic scrapbook page by Shimelle Laine

Much of what I made with Christmas Magic was part of my Journal your Christmas project in 2015, but there is one very Christmassy process video should you require that sort of inspiration! Again, please feel free to link up your own Christmas Magic projects in the comments! The more the merrier.

Not long until CHA now. I’ve even started putting things in a suitcase! Tomorrow, we go to infinity and beyond in terms of paper collections. See you then!