Tag Archives: patterned paper

Telling Stories with Organic Patterns – Paperclipping 202

paperclipping 202

Trends in patterns and background papers come and go.

What does not come and go are the moods and ideas that those same patterns communicate.

This year the chevron pattern is hot. We might use it because we love it right now, or because our stash is full of it.

No matter what our reason for using it, chevron communicates some very specific things:

  • energy
  • excitement
  • movement
  • up’s and down’s
  • instability or change
  • modern times

If our motivation for using chevron is just that we’re loving it so much right now, then what we see when we look at our page is that great print we love. But others who don’t pay attention to scrapbook trends will see some of the ideas I listed above, even though it will be sub-conscious and not something they could put their finger on.

Not only that, but in years to come, when you’re long past the excitement of the current trend and you’re looking back through your scrapbook, you’re more likely to sense excitement, movement, change, or up’s and down’s, as well.

That’s all great if those ideas support your story.

But what if your story is about this home you’ve lived in since your first baby was born, and now you’re welcoming your first grandchild for a visit in the very same home? Maybe a pattern that communicates stability and steadiness will give a better sense of how you feel about your memory and story.

And while geometrics are the “in” type of pattern right now, don’t forget organic patterns, which tell a whole range of emotions and moods that no geometric can!

Trends are fun, but good stories are timeless.

Don’t forget the organics when telling your stories.

Shine On!

P.S.> This week we released a new video tutorial that shares what the moods and associations are for some of the organics. I share lots of different layouts with organic patterns and show you how the associations of the patterns help tell the stories.

You’ll also see me assemble a page and explain why I picked the patterns I did.

This video is available for Paperclipping Members to watch right now!

If you’re not a member, please click here to learn more!

Love Potion #9 (closeup)

3 Ways to Store It: Patterned Paper

So Many Wonderful Passions (closeup)

For years I’ve been recommending scrapbookers organize stuff based on the way they hunt for things. Well, I’ve been refining my own system and this year I’ve hit on one that has revolutionized it all for me in a way that no other organization re-do ever has.

Today I’m excited to share with you my 3-part system for storing patterned paper. I’ve never heard of anyone else who organizes like this so don’t give up on this post if the first two parts of the system seem crazy. The third part will make you feel better and with all three parts together you have every possible way I can think of to organize your paper.

Ready to see how it works?

Part 1 – Store 12×12’s by Mood and Tone
There’s a pretty limited number of emotions and moods. Our patterned papers reflect a good handful of them, both in the colors and in the patterns themselves.

Sort them by mood and put your favorite papers of each mood in the front. When you pull out the photo(s) you want to scrap, ask yourself what the mood is and then go to the patterned papers for that mood.


Paper choice used to be the slowest part of my process after journaling, but now I find my paper within seconds. I keep expecting this to stop working and so far it continues to blow my mind! If you’re skeptical, read what one of the Paperclipping Members said after she watched the related video tutorial I posted to the membership:

Oh my, I think I’m sold. I just reorganized all my papers using this method (I was using by manufacturer before and it was cumbersome to flip through everything every time, but color alone didn’t work for me so I stuck to brand). I feel liberated already. It took me less than an hour (I don’t have too much, maybe 80 full sheets or so) but I think the ease with which it came together indicates something. I started just putting things into piles and at first I had way too many piles, but I started to come up with preliminary categories and tweaking as I went. I found that as I continued I would come upon one or two “ah ha!” pieces that just totally screamed whatever I was trying to say, and then it was easier to put the harder to categorize papers with those obvious ones. I ended up with seven of my own categories that I feel great about.

The real test came when I was done however. I’ve been staring at these two photos on my desk for a couple of weeks now–I wanted to use them with orange and cut part of this truly pretty orange paper with a graphic white pattern. But something was totally off and I was making no progress. I looked at them again tonight after the reorg, and decided they were actually “whimsical/fun” photos and pulled out a large white/orange dot pattern from that folder. There is no comparison, it works now–even though the oranges are basically the same! It just feels better.

Thanks so much, Noell!

PS of course, when my boyfriend asked what I was doing, and I said that was organizing my paper by how it makes me feel, he thought I was crazy. But when he saw how quickly I was done, I think even he was impressed. He is used to seeing me obsess over half-finished organizational schemes for much longer than this took!

Part 2 – Store Scraps Together
All scraps smaller than eight or so inches wide go together in one tray, tin, or other container.

Yes, all of them, together.

Does that idea make you twitch? Well guess what? You will find the most enchanting paper combinations this way — ones you could never have planned, dreamed of, nor found in a store and created by even your favorite designers.

Whenever I go to weed out the scraps I no longer love, serendipity happens. Here are two layouts that have resulted from this…

May 2012 6371

N 38

And just a note — I store most of my screen-printed transparencies along with my paper. They might be made of a different material but most of them function like patterned paper, so I don’t see any reason they should be separated.

Part 3 – Store 6×6 Paper Pads Together
Do this in a way that you can flip through them and easily see the fronts. Mine are in a wooden box.

Obviously, I’m the last to do this, not the first. But it’s a great part of this system because it allows you to hunt for your papers in some of those other ways we all sometimes do:

  • by color
  • by manufacturer

May 2012 6370

This way you won’t be lost if you’re worried about not having your large sheets and your scraps organized by color or manufacturer. Because companies put a sampling of the patterns on the front of the paper pads, you can quickly flip through the pads to see what your options are. Then you can pull from there.

All 3 Parts Working Together
With this 3-part system in place you can now look for papers in all of the possible ways I can think of, not just one:

  1. by mood
  2. by serendipitous scrap accidents
  3. by color
  4. by manufacturer

Paperclipping Members who want to launch a study of topics related to this — organization, mixing and matching patterned papers, and scrapbooking with scraps or by mood through via design principles — can watch these video tutorials:

  • 209 – How to Mix Patterns
  • 192 – Organize Patterned Paper by Design Principles
  • 190 – The Whole Process
  • 172 – Making Backgrounds Out of Scraps
  • 158 – Scrapbooking with Scraps
  • 151 – Embellish with Clusters of Scraps
  • 141 – Organization Tips
  • 119 – Expand a Color Palette
  • 105 – How to Have Endless Ideas
  • 98 – Design Language for Crazy
  • 85 – A Tour of My Scraproom
  • 59 – Mixing Patterned Paper

I also go into a lot of detail about patterns and moods in my design course, Design Your Story from The Ground Up.

Want to know more about a Paperclipping Membership? Click here!

CHA 2012 – Heidi Grace Debuts Her New Clever Handmade Scrapbook Company

Have you loved and missed Heidi Grace? She was a popular designer who took a bit of a break, and now she’s back with a whole new company: Clever Handmade! You’ll get a kick out of the fun and adorable stories of each of Heidi’s new lines, along with her embroidery rub-on’s!

A Fun Way to Choose Scrapbook Embellishments

True Scrap Sneak Peek

I’ve started working on my class for the online event, True Scrap 3! I’m really excited about my topic, which has to do with my method for choosing embellishments and paper for pages and projects. The method makes it easy, fun, and meaningful all at the same time!

What’s my topic? Hop over to this page to see! You’ll get to see the topics of all the other awesome teachers, too!

You won’t be able purchase a spot yet, but you can join the “Breaking News” email list so you’ll be sure to get special offers and discounts!

Click here for the True Scrap 3 Sneak Peak/Teacher Announcement!

Scrapbooking with Scraps – Paperclipping 158

How often do you use your leftover scraps of patterned paper? I use them just about every single time that I scrapbook. I love working with my scraps. They’re the first place I go for patterned paper choices and only check my full-sized sheets if I need one for my full-sized backgrounds, or if I just can’t find the colors I need from my scraps.

Would you like to get more out of your patterned papers and their scraps? In today’s episode for the Paperclipping Members, I share design tips and principles that work great with scraps! I also share some scrap maintenance tips that make scrapbooking with them (and scrapbooking in general) much easier!

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If you’re not a member, please click on the player above to see the trailer. You can get this entire episode, plus almost 160 scrapbook topics just like this and more to come every month, if you join Paperclipping! Click here to see how.

If you are a Member, you can find this video in the Member’s Area or in your premium feed.

Below are the layouts that made use of all the design and maintenance tips I shared in the episode . . .

You: Up Close

12×12 layout
Journaling reads:

  • The way your eyes turn to upside down moons when you smile.
  • Your long curling eye lashes.
  • The sprinkling of light summer freckles across the tops of your pink cheeks.
  • The eye brows you inherited from Grandma Nancy.
  • The dimple in your lower cheek.
  • Your perfect, perfect skin.

It’s always nice when a person’s outward beauty reflects their inner beauty the way your does. <3 Supplies: The orange paper on this layout is on clearance with only 8 left! Other supplies: Pink and green velvet pleated flowers & my favorite white letters: Foam Rockabye Thickers

Edison Music Box

12×12 layout
Journaling reads: Grandma Holt (Irene Nielsen Holt) gave us her Edison phonograph not long before she died. We call it the “music box” because that’s what she called it. It originally belonged to her grandparents. Since Grandma was born just after the turn of the century, that gives us an idea of how old the box it. It still works.

We have an old suitcase and a box full of was cylinders that play old turn of the century pieces, like, “Cute Little Wigglin Dance,” and “Hitchy-Koo.”

We love playing thee old songs, even the kids. It’s amazing to us that those folksy styles were the popular music of the time. It’s such a very different sound and personality from anything we’re used to.

Supplies: This beautiful stitched Anna Griffin paper is on clearance! I gave it a vignette effect by inking it with Old Paper and Walnut Stain Distress Ink, and an Ink Blending Tool. I used the same inks for the journaling block on off-white cardstock, but also added Vintage Photo. Other supplies: Vintage Metal Corners and Metal Philosophy Tags.

(Note: All product links lead to my affiliate store. I get a commission if you purchase through my links. Thank you!)

Sisters & Daughters

12×12 layouts
Journaing reads: I left my kids and husband at home this year to spend Thanksgiving with my parents and my sisters and their families. I loved getting to focus my attention on watching my sisters mother their children. Erin and Lindsay are great moms.

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