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A Process for Project Life – Paperclipping 234

paperclipping 234

Do you ever feel like you’re battling with Project Life?

I know Project Life is designed to make scrapbooking simple, fast, and easy. And I believe it does that for people who have not been scrapbooking a whole lot like you and I have.

When I look back on the years I’ve tried on and off to do PL, I realize I’ve been battling with it —

  • battling with its colored cards to keep everything from looking chaotic and disjointed
  • battling with the pocket orientations
  • battling with the time it takes to get it done

But the battle is over.

Over the past year I’ve figured out solutions to all these problems and I want to share them with you. These tips are not rules and they’re not the only way to make your Project Life pages look awesome. These are the tactics I’ve come to love as the way that I make the pages attractive, while letting my photos shine, and still keeping it simple and manageable.

Three Tips for Minimizing Chaos with Project Life

(For the scrapbooker like you and me, who may be a bit of an over-achiever when it comes to memory-keeping).

1. Limit Color

Here are options for how to use color that have consistently given me Project Life pages I love…

  1. Use one color per 2-page spread.
  2. Use two colors in small amounts as accents, with black and white being dominant.

I’m not referring to the photos here. I’m talking about the cards, papers, and accents. In the image above from my video tutorial, you can see that I did the two-color accent option, with black and white being dominant. It’s fresh and energetic, but doesn’t distract from the photos.

2. Use the same 3×4 card across your spread.

I got this idea from my favorite pages in Izzy’s Project Life album and I shared an idea for doing it with washi tape from my December Project Life pages as a way to reduce chaos.

If you have more than two or three journal cards across a spread, you’ll want to break up the repetition with one contrasting card for variation to make it look interesting. Here’s why this looks so good (in addition to keeping it simple and easy!)…

  • It unifies the page.
  • It leads the eye across the page.
  • It won’t compete with your photos.

When you vary each card, especially if they’re all a different color or design, you’re adding contrast. Everything that contrasts is trying to get your attention.

What happens when you have lots of different kids all trying to get your attention? Overwhelming? Yeah — that’s how those pages can feel, too.

3. Use embellishments as a solution, not a problem.

Don’t add embellishments only for the sake of adding embellishments. That leads to all kinds of problems and frustration. Think of embellishments as a way to solve design problems. You’ll still have pretty pages and embellishing, but you won’t overdo it and make your pages chaotic.

Need help with some of these Project Life problems?

You can see it all in action on video! I made a tutorial this week where I go through a month of pages (3.5 spreads), and show you how to do all three of these tips, plus additional ones!

It is because of these tips that my most challenging page ended up being my favorite.

I also share my process for completing a month in a quick, simple way that still leads to attractive pages.

You must be a Paperclipping Member to watch the video.

CLICK HERE for info on a membership!

Members can watch the video in the Member’s Area and on iTunes.

Shine On,

PRT192 – I Just Drool

This week we’re talking about artistic scrapbooking!

The Panelists

Click here to see more…

Tips for Using Up Your Stash – Paperclipping 233

paperclipping 233

Do you have a wishlist of new stuff to buy, while a whole stash of older scrapbook supplies waits to be used?

Need to use up some of the dated stuff first?

This is one of my specialty topics, so you’re at the right place. I have lots of great tips for using old scrapbook products and I’ve been sharing them with the Paperclipping Members through videos for a long time now. But there is one most important thing that needs to happen first.

You need to do this one thing before you do any of the other tips I love to discover and share.

You need to decide.

You must walk into your scrap space with the decision that you’re going to use a bunch of your lingering stuff.

It sounds simplistic and obvious, but it’s the absence of that decision that leads to the over-sized stash of older stuff we don’t feel inspired to use.

Once you’ve decided, you will LOVE the tips I have to share. You’ll love them because they’ll get you excited to use those older products. You’ll love the way they look on your pages, just as much as you think you’ll love using all those items on your new wishlist.

My Little Routine Lover (closeup)

This week I pulled out some of the very oldest products still lingering in my stash, plus a few that are as new as two years old (two years still feels old when there’s so much that is new, right?) — and I made a page that is one of my current favorites!

Every single item I used are items that have been sitting around for a long time, with the exception of one doily that I got for free with my coffee at breakfast.

I assembled the entire thing, sharing my thoughts and decisions on video for the Paperclipping Members. I also shared at least five new tips for using random old leftovers.

Members can find it in the Member’s Area and on iTunes.

Don’t yet know a whole lot about the Paperclipping Membership? CLICK HERE!

My Little Routine Lover (closeup)

So how much stuff do you have that cost you money and is taking up space? Want to put it to good use and make some gorgeous pages so you can feel better about that wishlist you’re accumulating?

I hope you enjoy the video!!

Shine On,

PRT191 – Where Is Scrapbooking Going

This week we’re talking about the future of scrapbooking!

The Panelists

Click here to see more…

Project Life Tip to Reduce Chaos

Jan 2014 6554

Do you ever have Project Life pages that become too chaotic when you add the cute journaling cards?

This happens to me all the time. I also find that some of the cutest cards look the most chaotic with my writing. But I stumbled on a solution that I expect to use a lot. I found it while I was putting together my December pages (I work Project Life monthly instead of weekly).

Here’s what happened, and the solution I found…

Jan 2014 6555

(click on the images to see a larger version)

I love Christmas red as the dominant color for the Christmas season, but I don’t own any Project Life (PL) journal cards with red. I did have a roll of red polka dot washi tape sitting on my counter, though, and I was using it to tape my smaller photos into 4×6 spaces to keep the photos from looking like they’re floating in that larger space (above).

Since I very often use the PL grid cards for my journaling to keep my page from getting chaotic, it occurred to me that I could dress up the gridded cards with my red washi tape.

The page above was my first solution. See the journaling card at the bottom of the page?

Add a strip of tape just below the curved corner. Then add a little wood veneer snow flake. Cute, right?

Jan 2014 6557

Then all of the next pages had more side-by-side pockets for multiple journaling cards.

At this point I decided to line the tape up with the top of the card instead, wrap the tape all the way around, front to back so I could use the same card on the opposite side, and then trim away the excess corners so they would be rounded like the card.

Look how well that washi tape unifies the page!

I love how it also unifies the entire month. I won’t do this all the time for every month, but I think I will once in a while. Especially for a month like December when the entire 31 days is a period of celebration, and most of the photos go well with one specific color.

Jan 2014 6560

The spread above needed a starting point for the eye. I don’t need every single one of these cards to journal on, so I added the red rectangle piece with the Santa mustache. Because it’s red like the washi, the page feels unified.

The two lines of red lead your eye across the spread.

To give the pages some interest, and to keep it from being too flat and boring, I added a handful of wood veneer Christmas trees to intersect with the bottom edge of the washi.


All of the items in this last spread for December are different from each other. There are Christmas cards with very different colors and looks, there is a part of a Starbucks gift back, there is a screen capture from Facebook, and then an everyday photo.

Notice how the same red washi tape unifies the page, so the parts and pieces don’t look so random.

It also gives the eye a place to go, while the white cards give the eye a place to rest. Together the cards become the grounding focal point amid what would otherwise be chaos, since no single photo is dominant.

December brought me the solution to one the biggest problem I run into while doing Project Life — the often chaotic look of many of the pages. Is that a problem you have, too? This is all you need:

I love how simple this is. Once you’ve chosen your tape, you hardly have to think about another thing. I’ll use my regular printed 3×4 cards, too, but I’m excited to combine the washi tape + journaling grid cards again with different color and pattern soon! How about you?

Post CHA Chat and Q&A

Wow, what a fun chance it was to chat with so many of you!

There were LOTS of questions, so this is a long video, but if you don’t want to see and hear the whole thing, there’s a way you can skip to the questions you’re interested in!

How to Skip to Your Favorite Questions

Do you see the overlay at the bottom of the video on the left side? (you might have to click play first)

That is a hyper-link and it will take you to a cool Google place where you can watch the video, but get this…

Over there you will see all the questions in the order that I answered them to the side of the video. Look for a question you’re interested in and then click on that question. The video player will skip ahead (or back) to where I answered that question!!

So it’s okay that we went on and on for more than 1.5 hours! :)


Shine On,

I Want to Chat with YOU!

Did you watch all the CHA videos and listen to the Paperclipping Roundtable?

All of the videos are uploaded now. As Izzy and I drove home I had one main thought: I want to chat with everyone at home who has been following our coverage!

I want to know what you think, what you observed, what you’re wondering about. Of course, I’m talking mainly about CHA but we don’t have to restrict it to just that.

I just really want to hang out with you. :)

Click here to see more…

CHA2014 – My Minds Eye Takes a New Turn

You can still find your favorite scrapbooking lines from My Mind’s Eye, but in addition to those, they’re taking a new direction. Check it on in the video.

CHA2014 – Lawn Fawn’s Stamps with Coordinating Die Cuts

Take a look at all the new stamp sets that Lawn Fawn has with dies to coordinate so you can easily cut out your stamp with a simple pass through a die cut machine. We’ll look at a few other products by Lawn Fawn in this video, as well.

CHA2014 – See New Studio Calico Products

See April Foster show the new Studio Calico products.