Monday, June 6, 2016


My dry eye symptoms persist so I have to refrain from using the computer.  Argh!

But because I have to do warm compress constantly over the weekend, I stayed in most of the time.  That means quite a bit of crafting done.  I was still working on the birthday cards my mom "ordered".  Then I also did some organization.  Funny I was giving many items "one last chance" before I send them to donation.  But after I have played with it, I had a change of heart.  Do I really want to toss it?  I asked myself.  Then I put that item back in my usual organization rather than the box which will go to donation.  I learned this weekend that I need to stay strong.  Once I have decided to part with it, I should never look back.  Why did I go back to that donation box??

As I was making cards for my mom, I had a little detour and made a quick and easy layout, using the new Magical paper from Close to My Heart.

I have been asked many times how I adopt or adapt a paper pack that seems to have a strong theme for my own use.  I don't think I have a knack for it but I can definitely share what i do.

I almost always start a layout with my pictures.  This way, I can ensure that I'm focusing on my pictures.  Then I choose my papers.  That's right, I choose the papers that fit my pictures.  At this point you may be wondering why I chose the Disney-themed paper for my pictures.

For the pictures above, for instance, I notice that my nephew J was in a baby blue bib and I was wearing dark colors.  The background of the picture is my brother's house and it was bright and white because it was in the morning.  It also showed a bit of his fancy kitchen.

In the selection process, I knew I wanted to have some blue in the background.  Blue was actually my "must have" because I wanted baby J to be the focus.  I knew that Magical has some blue so I took a look at it.  There is a sheet of blue patterned paper, which is actually the back of the black paper I used above, showcasing a repeating pattern of tickets.  I wanted to use that as a mat for my photos, but the patterns are quite too big to be shown as a border so that idea was aborted.

There is a white patterned paper with very small gray triangles repeating throughout the sheet.  That is a perfect paper for photo mats - it has subtle patterns that bring interest but not too distracting; AND the patterns are small enough to be recognized.  I brought that paper close to my photos and bingo!

Now that I've decided on the mats, I would love to use colors and patterns that show a contrast.  The black patterned paper with camera motives was perfect.  It's black background against the white-matted photos.  That's the biggest contrast I can get in the world, right?

The next decision I made was to bring in blue to the page.  At this point, I only have black and white!  So I used a sheet of blue cardstock as the base of the page.  I wanted to use the "Love this" 6*4 card as my title, so I naturally used two strips of red patterned paper to envelope the black background.

Throughout the whole process, I didn't do anything to "De-Disney" the paper.  I focused on the pictures and find the right paper with the right pattern and colors to serve the purpose I wanted.  And I must say, although the colors of Magical may suggest a lot of Disney, the patterns like ticket motif, cameras, triangles are very neutral.  They are not Disney-bound.  Some crafty friends turn away from Magical because they say they didn't have any Disney photos.  But who says Magical is only good for a Disney trip?

So that's my paper selection process.  I always focus on my pictures and try to use the papers that share common elements with my pictures.  Did I mention that the sketch comes from Reflections, a great How-to book for scrapbooking?  It helped a lot during the process!  I knew from the beginning how many sheets I needed so I wouldn't have to search for more than necessary.  :)

When we adopt the paper for our own use, we are making it more versatile and maximizing it.  How nice!

Thanks for stopping by!

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