Sunday, 28 November 2021

Ho Ho Ho | Cocoa Vanilla Studio


Hi everyone, I am here today to share my very first layout using the brand new ‘Joyful’ collection from Cocoa Vanilla Studio.

You may have noticed that I haven’t shared a project here on my blog for a while? Unfortunately I haven’t had access to my scrap stuff for quite some time while we were going through the process of moving house. I am pleased to report however, that I am now settled into my new house and after many years, I finally have a craft room again – happy days!

I was super excited to receive this new collection, and as usual, Zoe has totally hit it out of the park! I am not usually a big fan of Christmas collections because of the strong red/green colour palette they often use, but this one is so beautiful with its more muted tones and sweet little animals scattered throughout. I was also surprised to find myself drawn to use the Holly Days paper, which features a gorgeous wreath (a design I don’t often reach for first).

The photo I was working with was a photo of my three kids and my cat that I took in front of our tree on Christmas Eve, not long before they went to bed. (You can tell by the expression on their faces they were excited about what was to come the following day… except for the cat of course, who was horrified at the fact they were making him wear a turkey hat! haha)

I decided to keep the wreath paper intact and use it as my layout background. This gave me a good base to work from, with the focal area already defined for me. The first thing I did was choose some patterned papers from the A5 Paper Stack to use as a mat behind my photo and to create some layers on my page. I tore along the bottom edges of the papers, then ruffled them up a little more with my fingernail to add texture. I also added a small mint coloured doily into my layers, and some frayed gauze on top of them, then stapled the entire stack together and attached it to my page.

I then chose two different colour Distress Oxides (Rustic Wilderness and Worn Lipstick), mixed them with a little water, and used a fine brush to add tiny splatters around the entire wreath. I then repeated the process with some gold mist as well. Once dry, I adhered my photo down on top of my paper stack using a liquid adhesive and set about adding some embellishments.

In the top left corner of my photo, I tucked in a Chipboard Sticker present underneath the edge of the layers, then the sweet little season’s greetings envelope from the Die Cut Ephemera pack over the corner of the photo. (Embellishing directly onto my photos is something I love to do.) I also added the magic moments banner piece along the bottom edge of the photo (also from the ephemera pack).

To the right of my photo I added the ho ho ho Chipboard Sticker for my page title, and underneath I added the sleeps til Christmas sticker from the Accessory Sticker sheet. (For the number 1, I actually used one of the Mini Puffy Alpha Stickers from the ‘These Days’ collection.) In the bottom right corner of my photo I added that sweet little fox from the Die Cut Ephemera pack, and put a little foam tape behind him to pop him up to the same height as my photo.

To embellish around my wreath, I fussy cut some large stars from the Making Spirits Bright paper, which I mixed with a few smaller ones from the Die Cut Ephemera pack.

I finished off with a few gold foil phrase stickers from the Accessory Sticker sheet and I was done! I am so happy with how this page turned out (especially considering I thought I would be a little rusty after my time away, but this collection made it so easy!)

If you haven’t gotten your hands on this beautiful range yet, then make sure you do. There is currently a bundle deal available in the Cocoa Vanilla Studio store as part of the Black Friday sale (plus some awesome bargains too!) Shop the sale HERE

Until next time, happy scrapping! X

Saturday, 28 August 2021

Finally Together | Cocoa Vanilla Studio

Hi everyone, today I am popping in to share another layout I created earlier this month for Cocoa Vanilla Studio using the gorgeous new 'These Days' collection. As this range has such a lovely home / family theme I decided to document one of my favourite ever family photos. This photo of the five of us was taken not long after we had finally brought our boys home. After being born prematurely, we spent over 10 weeks (which at the time felt like forever) in hospital and just looking at this photo reminds me of the elation I felt when we were finally able to be a family at home. 

I knew I wanted to use a patterned paper background for my page, but I started with a sheet of white cardstock as the base. I chose 3 papers - the tiny heart print Good Life; the adorable house print Neighbourhood and the spotty green Family Ties. Starting from the left edge, I added various sized vertical strips of paper, slightly distressing the overlapping edge as I went.

For my photo, I added two layers of patterned paper to mat it – the black and white floral and the wood grain print, both from the A5 Paper Stack. On top of those paper layers I also added some frayed gauze for texture before adding some cardboard and then my photo on top.

I then turned my attention to my embellishments, beginning with the Wall of Fame patterned paper with all the doodled frames on it. I fussy cut three of the frames, and then tucked them in around my photo to create the bases for my embellishment clusters.

For the cluster in the top right corner of my photo I used the home sweet home sticker from the Accessory Sticker sheet, which I placed inside the frame I had tucked there. I then chose several floral pieces from both the Die Cut Ephemera pack and the Floral Ephemera pack and tucked them in around the frame. I then added a small heart and small butterfly – both from the Puffy Stickers sheet; a small Wood Button; and a couple of leafy branches from the Foam Title Stickers pack. I also added a die cut butterfly to the corner of my photo.

To keep my design cohesive, I used the same types of embellishments in the cluster on the bottom left corner of my photo – Die Cut Ephemera, Floral Ephemera, Wood Buttons, Puffy Stickers and Foam Title Stickers. I topped this cluster with the oh happy day! sticker from the Accessory Sticker sheet. I arranged this cluster so that it trailed towards the bottom left corner of my page, which helped give my layout design a horizontal flow through the photo from top right to bottom left.

My title was the focus of my final cluster, along the bottom edge of my photo. I used the fussy cut frame I had placed there as the spot for the first word of my title, finally, which I created using the Mini Puffy Alphas. (These alphas are so gorgeous, and one of my very favourite things from this collection.) For the second word of my title, I used the word together from the Foam Title Stickers pack. These stickers are a beautiful script font, and a lovely charcoal colour. I love mixed font titles, and I think the combination of these two styles look great together. Below my title I added a brush stroke sticker and a small cluster of crosses from the Clear Stickers sheet.

Along the left edge of my layout, I added a couple of sweet phrase stickers from the Accessory Sticker sheet so that they ran vertically in line with the layered paper strips. And that was my layout done!

I am loving working with this collection so far; it’s one of those ones that is just so easy to work with, and I love how many embellishments there are to choose from! If you haven’t gotten your hands on it yet, ask your favourite scrappy retailer, or check with a stockist from the stockist list HERE
Until next time, happy scrapping! X

Friday, 27 August 2021

Enjoy Together | June 2021 Hip Kit


Hi everyone, today I have a layout to share that wasn't created for anyone other than myself. (Yes, sometimes it actually happens!) If you watch my YouTube channel, you may have recently seen that I did an unboxing video of my very first kit from Hip Kit Club. Subscribing is something I have been wanting to do for a long time, so my sister Mandy and I decided to bite the bullet and just do it. (It helps that we can split the shipping costs.) So I subscribed to the Scrapbook kit, and she subscribed to the Pocket Life kit. 

The layout I am sharing today is the very first layout I created from my very first kit. I was working with the June 2021 main scrapbook kit, as well as the add-on embellishment kit that I also purchased, which gave me TONS to work with!

The photo I was documenting is of me and my family when we were out celebrating my boys' birthday with lunch at the local pub and I think it worked well with the contents of this kit. The June kit consists of a mix of Pinkfresh Studio 'Happy Blooms' collection as well as Hip Kit exclusive products and they all coordinate beautifully.

For my layout I decided to create some subtle, pretty mixed media as the basis of my design. I used Kitsch Flamingo Distress Oxide mixed with water and then brushed it across my cardstock to create a light pink wash. I also used Mowed Lawn Distress Oxide mixed with water and a fine paint brush to add splatters.

I used the purple crosshatch style patterned paper from Pinkfresh Studio to back my cardstock and create a border for my layout. I then used a mix of the Pinkfresh papers to create layers on the focal area of my page. I also added a paper doily and some frayed gauze for texture before adding my photo on top. 

Alongside my photo was a small pocket style envelope from the Pinkfresh Studio Journaling Bits pack, with a journal card tucked inside.

 I used pieces from the Pinkfresh Floral Ephemera pack to add clusters in the top right and bottom left corners of my photo, with a third floral element (the flower tucked under the edge of the pocket) coming from the Hip Kit ephemera pack. The little heart button was also a Hip Kit exclusive. Along the top edge of my photo I added the pink banner to help cover up some of the background distraction.

For my title, I used one of the large Hip Kit chipboard phrases combined with the green Pinkfresh alphas. I also used several phrases from the Hip Kit clear sticker set to add some extra text to my page.

On top of the journaling pocket I added one of the sweet little Hip Kit fabric bows. These bows come deconstructed in a pack (which I didn't mind), and only require a minute and couple of dabs of glue to put one together. I also used my typewriter to add my journaling to the journal card.

I was really happy with how this pretty page turned out, and very happy with my first Hip Kit! I am looking forward to getting stuck into it again as soon as I have a chance. 

If you would like to see how this page came together, then you can watch my process video here:

Thanks for stopping by today, happy scrapping! X

Wednesday, 25 August 2021

Life is a Blank Canvas | Cocoa Vanilla Studio


Hi everyone, today I am sharing another layout created for Cocoa Vanilla Studio, this time for the August monthly challenge. This challenge was actually designed by me, and I think almost everyone will be able to find an element to inspire them from the board, whatever your style.

Here's a look at the board, entitled "Life is a Canvas"...

And here is my sample layout...

I really love the mix of eclectic images that I put together for this arty board. There are lots of rich, vibrant jewel tones; textures like brick and wood; and (of course) a butterfly. I did a bit of stash-busting for this page, and used the Wild at Heart collection from a few years ago, as I thought the colours and theme of this collection worked well with the board. The photo I was working with was one of my daughter with paint smeared on her face. 

I started my page by creating a mixed media background using Distress Oxides. I used Faded Jeans first (one of my very favourite oxide colours), by swiping the ink pad on my messy mat, mixing it with a little water, and then laying my cardstock over the top to soak up the colour. I then layered some Worn Lipstick over the top, which I applied using the packaging technique to give me a little more control over the placement of the colour. I then added some splatters using Mustard Seed and a fine paint brush.

Next, I added some stencilled detail using an arty themed stencil from Dusty Attic. Again, I used the Faded Jeans Distress Oxide, only this time I used a sponge to apply it through the stencil. For my next layer, I added some stamped detail over the top using a brick pattern stencil from Viva Las VegaStamps and black ink.

The next element I introduced to my page was a cut file from Cut to You. The cut file I used was the Craft a Happy Life page builder file, and I altered it by enlarging it and only using part of the design (the paint brushes) for my layout. I left the cut file white, and layered it over my mixed media background, which allowed the layers to show through the gaps. 

Then came the easiest part, which was adding some layers of patterned papers to mat my photo, some frayed gauze, a paper doily, and then the photo itself. I also fussy cut some floral pieces from another patterned paper that I used to tuck into my layers above and below my photo. I also added three fussy cut butterflies.

For my title, I used the new 'These Days' foam title stickers for the word life and some other small alphas from my stash for the remainder, then finished off the quote with typed strip journaling. 

I finished off my layout by using the same Distress Oxides and a water brush to add some colour to the tips of the cut file paint brushes; and by adding a few sparkly enamel dots. 

I would love to see your take on my mood board! Entries close 31st August and you can enter via the Cocoa Vanilla Studio Community group. A random entry will win a $25 voucher to spend in the Cocoa Vanilla store on some scrappy goodness, so get busy!
Until next time, happy scrapping! X 

Tuesday, 24 August 2021

Sweet Slumber | Cocoa Vanilla Studio

 Hi everyone, I know I have some catching up to do here. Life has been pretty complicated at my end lately and I have to admit, I have been struggling. I know there are lots of others out there who are also struggling for a variety of reasons, so I am sending hugs to all of you.

Today I am sharing the very first layout I created a little while ago using the new ‘These Days’ collection from Cocoa Vanilla Studio. I have been crushing on this collection since Zoe revealed it, but I think I fell in love with it even more once the box was actually in my hands and I could touch everything. And believe me, there is SO much to love in this collection with more embellishments than we have ever had before!

I have to admit, whenever I get a new collection to play with I am always overwhelmed to start with because there is just so much to choose from, so it takes me a little bit of time to cut into it. It was for this reason that I decided to keep things simple for my first layout to document a sweet photo of my daughter and one of my sons taking a nap together on the couch.

I started my page with a sheet of white cardstock as the base and I chose two patterned papers to use for my background. The first was the beautiful watercolour striped Family Ties paper, which reminded me of the t-shirt my daughter was wearing in the photo. The second was the Wall of Fame paper, which features adorable hand drawn frames. I cut a couple of wide strips from each paper, distressed the edges a bit, and then adhered them to the cardstock in an alternating pattern, leaving a small space between each one.

I then matted my photo using the smaller scale version of the black and white floral print of the Neighbourhood paper from the A5 Paper Stack. I also added a white paper lace doily from my stash and some frayed gauze for soft texture.

Once my photo was in place I set about adding my embellishments around it. My plan was to create a cluster in the bottom left corner, the top right corner, and the bottom right corner. I used pieces from the Floral Ephemera pack to create my layered cluster in the bottom left corner, adding foam tape under some of the flowers for dimension. I also added a sweet little Wood Button in one of the flower centres.

In the top right corner of my photo I again used pieces from the Floral Ephemera pack as the basis of my layered cluster. This was where I also chose to place my title, overlapping the top edge of my photo. I used the word sweet from the Foam Title Stickers and paired it with the new Mini Puffy Alpha Stickers to form the word slumber. (I am in loooove with these alphas!) I also added a small blue butterfly from the Puffy Stickers nearby.

In the bottom right corner of my photo I used a few pieces from the Die Cut Ephemera pack – the sweet little house, the picture perfect moments banner and a small heart. I also added the little blue home flag from the Puffy Stickers set. I finished off with some of the tiny little black leaves from the Foam Title Stickers, my handwritten journaling inside one of the frames on the background paper, and some splatters of black ink.

If you would like to watch my process to see how it all came together, check out my video on my YouTube channel here:

Until next time, happy scrapping! X

Tuesday, 6 July 2021

Super Stars | Danni Vee's 4K Hooray YouTube Hop


Hi everyone, I hope this finds you well. It's been super busy around my house lately with the kids on school holidays and I haven't had much time to sit at my desk and create. *insert sad face* I did however, have a chance recently to play along with Danni Vee's 4K Hooray YouTube hop. This hop was put together to celebrate my dear friend Danni's recent milestone of reaching four thousand subscribers on YouTube. Such a fabulous achievement!

For the hop, Danni invited us to create a layout using four of her favourite items from the grid below...

In a further nod to Danni, several participants (myself included), also decided to scraplift one of Danni's layouts. I knew immediately which one I wanted to do, because it was one of my favourite Danni layouts of all time...

This was one that Danni created for the Cocoa Vanilla Studio design team, and given that I am fortunate enough to be on this team with her, I thought it was the perfect choice. Danni used the 'Legendary' collection for her page, so of course I did the same. 

Here's my take on it...

The photo I chose to document was of my boys at their cross country at school. They placed second and fifth for their age group, which was an awesome performance from them both. 

I started my layout with the same wood grain paper that Danni did, which is just about my favourite paper from this whole range. I added some subtle mixed media to my page using texture paste and a stencil from Dusty Attic. I also added some white and teal splatters and then set it aside to dry.

For the focal area of my page, I matted my photo using blue star print paper then added the layer of the teal chevron print paper (which was actually from the 'Sunkissed' collection) underneath it. Amongst the layers I also tucked in a grey paper doily, and some frayed gauze for texture before sticking my photo on top.

I knew I wanted to use the title "Super Stars" for my page using the Die Cut Titles from the collection. (I did have to improvise and add an extra "s" to the end of star, which I simply cut from another word.) I stuck my title down along the bottom edge of the photo, just as Danni had placed hers. 

When it came to embellishing my page, I wanted to use stars to tie in with the title. I gathered together a selection from the Die Cut Ephemera pack and tucked them in around my photo. On the right edge of my photo I also added the certified legend ribbon, because it worked perfectly with the theme of the page. 

Like Danni's page, I finished off with some tiny phrase stickers and a scattering of enamel dots (both of which were on Danni's list of materials). In the end, I ticked off:
- patterned paper background
- ink splatters
- tiny word stickers
- enamel dots
AND, I added in a scraplift to boot!

If you would like to see how this layout came together and see the videos from the other participants in Danni's hop, check out my process video here (there is a inked listed of participants in my video description):

Until next time, happy scrapping! X

Monday, 21 June 2021

Chill Out | Cocoa Vanilla Studio


Hi everyone, I'm popping in today to share my latest Cocoa Vanilla Studio design team project with you. I had some cute photos of my boys swimming that I wanted to document, so couldn't help but pull out the gorgeous 'Sunkissed' collection to go with them. I decided to focus on the blues and greens from the range in keeping with the watery theme of my page.

I began my layout with a sheet of 300gsm white cardstock which I had cut down to measure 11x11". I used Distress Oxides (Salvaged Patina and Twisted Citron) to create a watercolour style background. I then added some stencilled detail over the top using a small scattered hearts stencil from Simple Stories and Faded Jeans Distress Oxide. My cardstock was then mounted onto a sheet of the Bright Side paper, which left me with the beautiful blue border I was wanting.

For the focal area of my page I used layered pieces of patterned papers which included some from the A5 Paper Stack, as well as some of the Sunny Days and Good Vibrations papers. I also added a paper doily and some frayed gauze for texture under my main photo, then cut one of the Pocket Cards in half to add some extra layering under my smaller photos.

Now it was time to add some extra fun to my page with some embellishments! There are such a great range of embellishments that come with this collection. I started with the Die Cut Ephemera pack, choosing pieces that fit with the colour scheme and theme of my page. To the left of my photos I created a cluster using two of the palm trees from the pack, which I popped up with some foam and bent the leaves up to give them some dimension. Other pieces I tucked in around my photos included a cute cloud, a pair of flips flops, a pair of sunglasses, and the beach towel that read sunshine state of mind on it.

As I often like to do, I added a couple of stickers from the Accessory Sticker sheet directly onto my main photo. The be happy tab in the top left hand corner, and the just chillin' banner along the bottom edge. I also added the phrase sticker make a splash to the right of my photos where my title was. My title was created using the gold Glitter Foam Title Stickers and I just love the bright pop of sparkle they give the page. I also used two of the little glitter hearts from the same pack to add one to each of my smaller photos.

I finished off my page by adding several stickers from the Puffy Stickers set, handwritten journalling, a stamped date, and splatters of black ink to tie it all together.

If you would like to see exactly how this page came together, you can watch my process video here:

If you have any suggestions of things you would like to see from me in my videos (such as more boy layouts, a particular collection or technique, etc) make sure you leave me a comment over on my YouTube channel (or here if you prefer) so I know what you are interested in.
Thanks so much for stopping by today. Until next time, happy scrapping! X