Archivers Scrapfest 2012, Scrapbooking trip of a lifetime!

After a great  day at the Minnesota Zoo, I was ready to jump full force into a whole lot of scrapping.

The pilot and I made a whole schedule of classes when we were registering…I allowed an hour to sign up the morning registration opened and as is the way with most best laid plans, the registration site crashed. There were so many scrappers all trying to register the whole system shut down. After trying for more than an hour and making myself late we finally got an email letting us know that registration would be rescheduled.

Registration for some of these classes is kind of cutthroat. I did not have available time on the Friday that registration was rescheduled for so the pilot had to do all of my registration for me. Even after being reworked it was a challenge to get in and get signed up for classes.  If you are ever going to attend a Scrapfest the BEST tip I can share is sign up for the couple of classes you want and then register again…If you try to sign up for all of the classes at once and some fill up you will not get any.

There are 3 basic philosophies of attendance for Archiver’s Scrapfest in Minnesota

1. Wait in the super long lines and do the free make and take projects (this year there were 24)…most of the vendors have different project each day so you can go back all three days and do different projects every day.

2. A number of locals just come by and take 5-10 classes and spend the rest of the time in a smattering of the make-and-take lines that are specific to their crafting focus and going by the demos to get a quick lesson on the new product launches.

3. Since I come such a long way, I took the third approach….take as many classes as possible. This year there were 23 available hours of class times and 250 classes. I took 21 hours worth. It was wonderful. I enjoyed the rush from class to class and coming home with more project than I will get done in the year before it is time to come back.

On Friday the pilot got up EXTREMELY early to fish. It is our compromise, he gets to fish and I get to scrap. Since Minnesota is that land of 1,000 lakes there are a number to choose from but he really enjoyed fishing with Tony Roach last year so it was back to Lake Mille Lacs.

It is a pretty serious drive from Eagan, MN to Mille Lacs so the pilot documented the drive for me. Most of the drive was done in the dark so the photos on his phone were too dark to distinguish, but the sun came up in time to see the BEAUTIFUL lake . I love to fish so the pilot wanted to make sure that I got to live vicariously through him.

Tony was booked so the pilot fished with one of his buddies, Randy. He met the boat at Terry’s Boat Harbor on the northwest side of the lake in Garrison.

 

The water was smooth and the weather was very pleasant, but the fishing was SLOW.

It is called fishing (and not catching) but a long day of the water with very little to real in and a two hour drive each way does not make for a very successful day. I love to eat Walleye and was looking forward to a plate full of fresh catch but the one the pilot caught was too big to keep.

While the pilot was fishing I was busy learning to quill pumpkins and Christmas trees by Quilled Creations, I was learning new was to use Bella Blvd.’s Embellishments, I made a couple of trays, and learned how to make a number of albums, instead of buying them.

Excluding a one hour break on Friday for lunch and no class during the 5pm slot on Friday afternoon I was in class every hour that there were classes to take. During the first break,  I had the opportunity to see a demo of the “Memory Files” by Heidi Swapp.

I love the idea of making a mini book and adding those mini books to pages inside of other books. I bought a few different sizes and shapes so that I could take them apart and recreate them differently.

In the breaks I also stopped by the demos and made a Honey Pop Flower with Inky Antics, and I played with the new punches from EK Success Brand. I have used the punches a little before and I know to sharpen then with tin foil, but I learned that if you cut the corners first you can make a beautifully done border that all lines up. There were a number of other Demos that I would have enjoyed but there were just not enough hours in the day. I did have the opportunity to use the a new ribbon cutter and sealer called an I-magicut by Imaginisce which was the one product I decided I could not come home without… no more frayed ribbon for me!

On Saturday, the pilot dropped me off at the front door so that I would not have to arrange the shuttle again. Getting the shuttle to drop me off was really easy, it was the pick up that caused the complications.

By day 2 I was in the groove. I brought my lunch so that I would not have to skip a class to eat and armed with my schedule I was prepared to make a Halloween album and Advent Calendar and a Hanging Calendar with Pinecone Press, I made an adorable Christmas Ornament Album from Bazzill and a quick and easy Christmas album with Bo Bunny,  and made an album with Millinery Paper from Making Memories, along with a number of individual page spreads from My Mind’s Eye, Doodlebug Designs, Lily Bee Design.

I was very impressed that most of the classes were taught by the designers themselves. They talked about their inspiration for the designs and some of the planning and ideas behind their ideas and accessories. I have never really been one for name brands, but I have a much greater appreciation now for a number of designers.

One of my favorites was taught by Little Yellow Bicycle, a 6X6 fall album, and the best project I did all weekend was the Christmas Countdown Tray that we did with 7 Gypsies. The class was wonderful organized and really different than the usual activities that I have come up with so far for the trays.

I do not make many cards, but I really enjoyed the ideas that were presented by Art Impressions in their class about gift card holders, I actually think I can make some envelopes on my scrap pages with the concepts…and now if I need a card holder I will have one, actually 3 to be exact.

Most people attend Crops in the evenings to finish the projects that start in the classes during the day but the pilot was with me so I spent the evenings with him instead. We enjoyed some wonderful restaurants and ended up getting to eat the fresh walleye that I wanted at a wonderful restaurant right down the road, Doolittle’s Woodfire Grill.

Doolittle’s was not the only great food we had, we also had a couple wonderful meals at the Granite City Grill.

One night, after the pilot headed to bed I caught up with a wonderful woman I met on the shuttle to the Mall on Friday and we did a little evening crop just the two of us. It was nice to have someone to compare projects with and to talk scrapping with…she was exceptional company. Yolanda is part of a scrapping group on Facebook that all met up at Scrapfest. Next year I would really like to try a crop as I have already been home a few weeks now and I have yet to finish any of the project I started.

On our normal 1-10 scale that the pilot and I like to rate all of our trips on I would give the whole trip a 9, it was wonderful to do something I enjoy so much and have the pilot there to keep me company. I would have loved for him to have a great fishing trip, but he at least got a little time out on the water and we got to enjoy some time together. I hope to be back taking classes and playing with all of the new tools and designs next year.

The Big Page Contest for Archivers and Scrapfest 2012

Tonight all the pages for the Scrapfest 2012 Big Page Contest are due.

The Big Page contest from Archivers for Scrapfest 2012.

The contest seemed made for the Pilot and I as the premise of the design was to use 10s to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of Scrapfest. Since we got married on October 10th, 2010 (10-10-10) we designed and executed 2 pages about our wedding for judging. The pilot and I waited YEARS to get married so that we could get married on that day.  In college I was number 10 on the volleyball team, it has always been my lucky number and I figured if we got married on a day full of 10s we were bound to have a blessed wedding and a life full of “lucky 10″ moments. So far, almost 2 years in, the 10s have stayed good to us.

For the contest, we decided on 2 very different approaches to the design. The first page was VERY CLEAN. Traditionally when I do pages, I fill every available spot with photos. I have this habit of taking a TON of photos and I struggle to choose only a few.  The pages allow me to relive the wonderful moments in my life and as a result it is a painful process to leave great photos off the pages. For the page we picked ONLY ONE of our favorite wedding photos and really emphasized the beauty of the photo, the event and the two of us. It took me almost as long to choose the photos as it did to do the page.

The page is a specialty white paper. My mother and I butted heads about the fact that my dress was white (she thought it should be cream because it was a fall wedding and I really wanted WHITE).  When others look at the page they wouldn’t know the significance of the white, but it is a special touch for me. My mom ended up really happy with the white in the end. The pilot and I choose not to have a wedding party so we tried to bring in our hunter and olive color scheme in in non traditional ways…as a result I put a green paper frame for the photo. Although I desaturated the photo for the page the Pilot wore an olive green shirt under his khaki suit and a hunter, khaki and olive tie and I had my nails painted green and a “tattoo” sewn on the back of my dress.

For the first time I used white glitter thickers, they are letter stickers that are either foam or chipboard that are “thicker” than a traditional sticker. We described the event as “classy redneck.”  In honor of that idea I used the White on White a reflection of the “classy” half. The glitter on the letters really helped them POP.

The flowers are a Martha Stewart Crafts design made with the flower punches that Archiver’s demoed at Scrapfest 2011 attached with pop dots. Although it is almost time to make another trip, this was the first time I took the time to try them again, I now understand the need for the mat. I thought I could just make them on the cutting mat that I have on the table but it was NOT spongy enough to allow the petals to curl.

The other page brought in a little of the REDNECK half.

The page includes our invitation, in the envelope under the photo on the left and a couple of framed photos from the event. Although you cannot see it from the photo, our wedding resembles a Pantone swatch book (looks like a book of the paint swatches you would see at home depot-printers use them to choose colors for inks). Since both the Pilot and I work in printing it was a fitting and COOL way to do an invite, it has 10 pages. From the photos you can tell that we had a little bit of a non-traditional wedding. Even though we were engaged for almost 4 years before we got around to getting married we jokingly called the event our shotgun wedding because guests were encouraged to bring their guns, and ammo, to shoot skeet in their black tie attire. It was fun to watch people come from their cars in their fancy cloths with their gun cases in one hand and ammo boxes in the other.

In a nod to my mothers wish for cream, we used a cream lace ribbon and ribbon tape as well as some paper ribbons, green brads, and a sticker set with a shotgun and shells. We used a different set of thickers on this page, they almost look filled with green glitter. Who knew that shotguns could be “pretty.”

The pilot sweetly drove me to Archivers to drop them off about 8:30 tonight; nothing like waiting until the last minute…But I am really happy with the way they both turned out.

 

The 7th Annual Scrap Trip

Every year, well for the the last 7 years, my mom and I load up and head to the mountains for some mother-daughter time and a whole lot of scrapbooking.  I have a wonderful scrap room at home, but I know that the only way I am going to get in some solid scrap time is to load up the car and get away. With laundry or dishes or just household stuff that comes up it never works out to devote time to just scrapping….as a result, my mother and I load up the car with everything we might possibly need and we head for the mountains where it is cooler. As you can tell I do not waste any space in the car, if  there is a spot I bring one more, just in case, thing that I might get to on the trip.

There is an art to the car loading and Mom and I usually fill every space available in the car which usually takes a lot of help from the pilot and my dad, pictured above. Every year I promise myself I am going to be more organized and take less but it has yet to happen…In the time I should spend organizing I usually scrap, what can I say, I cannot help myself.

Every year, until this year, we have stayed in a house in Ruidoso, New Mexico. The mountains are so much cooler in a time that the Texas heat is so brutal. The pilot usually comes out for the weekend and we can go to the Horse Races at Ruidoso Downs, the Lavender Springs Farm in Arabela, and we love the pottery at Pinon Pottery. There is also a Walmart and Walgreens in town for anything we forget. This year, however, we ended up in Cloudcroft, Ruidoso was on fire.

From Austin the drive takes us about 12 hours, Mom and I stop frequently to look at plants along the road, picnic, visit the bathrooms and to check out fruit stands all along the way.

There are some really wonderful little spots that we love to stop out to break up the trip. The Runyan Ranch on the Penasco River has a really cute little petting zoo and WONDERFUL fresh cherries and we really like the little store and Elk Dogs at the Old Apple Barn in High Rolls.

When we arrive we unload and set up shop, me on the floor and mom usually at the dining room table, although this year we brought a table so we would have a place to eat. I love to be able to spread out across the floor and be able to make and leave a mess for days while I work.

On a typical day we try to get up with the sun to get a chance to see the deer, elk or other animals in the forest. I should probably mention that we usually stay in houses that are in the mountains on the edge of the National Forrest and we bring corn to attract the animals. Then we have a cup of coffee or hot tea on the porch in our sweats. Both of us try to soak up as much of the cool weather as possible. Then we get dressed and take the dogs for a hike, we usually try to walk for an hour or so.  I take a bag on our walks, there are always fun things in the forest that I like to bring home, pine cones, really different leaves and dried plants, and even tree bark.

When we get home we have breakfast and then we spend the rest of the day scrapping away. We move VERY little other than to occasionally help each other with our projects. We have different scrap styles so we RARELY work on projects together, but we spend a lot of time bouncing ideas off of each other. Unless the pilot comes out we only leave the house to go for supplies or to go to town and return emails and phone calls. Meals happen whenever one of us takes a break and cooks something.

 

We are there to SCRAP SO THAT IS WHAT WE DO. Occasionally I need a break and I read a book or two. Some days we work well into the night working away and others we quit early, but we really get an opportunity to enjoy each other and occasionally shoo a hummingbird out of the house.

I love all the scrapping I get done, but the time I get to spend with my mother is invaluable. I highly recommend the getting away to scrap.

Is it possible to be too BIG?

When the pilot and I first got engaged I bought an 18X18 Martha Stewart brown scrapbook. I love photos and with 3 photographers (my friends shot it) I knew there would be tons of photos so I thought BIGGER IS BETTER…I had absolutely no idea how challenging it would be to do a book that large. The book itself was a little daunting…Just thinking about the pages kept me from working on it for a while.

 

Since I bought it, the book and all of the supplemental material has been discontinued.  As a result, I was limited to the 40 spreads in the book…and no plastic sheet covers. Thank goodness the Pilot is a Printer for his day job so at least I could get some white paper in 18X18 to build the pages on. One of the toughest things that I never considered is there is no way to cut paper 18X18. All the cutters are designed for paper that is 12X12 but the only way to get paper large enough to cover a whole area is to splice 12X12 pieces together. I cut them and then taped the backs together and then tried to cover the spliced areas with photos and ribbons.

The size did, however, allow me to include a huge number of the wedding photos and it made it easy to take parts of the pages for what I like to call “Secondary Coverage,” A couple of photos that are part of a larger ever. The book actually turned out really well.

Page 1 was really simple…

I took apart the  multi-page Pantone Swatch-Book style invitation and was able to showcase all of the pages accr0ss the spread.

And I was able to showcase all of the the ceremony highlights on one page.

For such a momentous occasion it is wonderful to do such a memorable book, BUT it will be a one of a kind for me.