Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Before & After : Fresh New Study

When we moved into our home, almost every wall was painted builder's beige. That is SO not me! I think color adds so much to any home, regardless of style, and best of all, paint is cheap! I've been struggling with my study for a while now. In addition to the beige wall paint, the built-in cabinetry was brown wood. My chairs were also brown. Just a blah, brown room altogether.

So, I decided that a room makeover was in order! First order of business was brightening up the room. I painted the cabinetry a nice off-white (an oil-based paint for good coverage), and the walls Wedgewood Grey by Benjamin Moore. As you can see, it took several attempts to find the right blue:

My best tip when it comes to paint color is to simply buy lots of little samples and paint straight onto the wall! The lighting in the paint store is not your lighting. Therefore, be brave, and paint little sample boxes directly on your wall. And then, most importantly, live with it for a few days! It's amazing how some colors really change with the time of day, or just grow on you after a while.

Now here's the most dramatic change -- the white cabinetry:

I wish I had a before photo of these cabinets before they were painted. The transformation is amazing! I absolutely adore it being white -- it adds a fresh, beachy feel to the room!

I love the soothing color of the room. However, my traditional brown chairs looked out of place in my new, more casual home. Thus, the room sat empty for several months with just the two chairs and our piano. A very uninspired space, if I do say so myself.

Then, a few weeks ago, with the impending start of the school year, inspiration hit! I decided we really must have a usable space! This room was sitting empty, yet would be the perfect "command central" for school work, office work, and home organization. So without spending much money at all, I transformed the study in one weekend. I visited World Market, Home Goods and TJ Maxx, with my boys complaining every step of the way. My husband and I started going through our attic, and moved things all around. (Keep in mind that the piano has to stay -- my son loves it!) We moved in an Ikea desk that had been upstairs unused, and moved out the brown armchairs that have seen better days. We brought in these fun new chevron side chairs and the room came to life! We are thoroughly enjoying this fun -- and functional -- space! Now I just need a rug... :)

Thursday, August 9, 2012

So How Do I Print All These Cool Instagram Photos...?

Ever since I got my iPhone, I've been in love with Instagram! I love the way you can edit your photos and give them that "old school" feel, or take a very current photo and add that hipster edge! I have about 80-90 Instagram photos on my phone and every now and then I'd ask myself, "So how do I print all these cool photos?" I'd think about it a while, remember how I don't do well at resizing things on my editing software, then get tired of pondering this mystery..., and start taking more pictures!

A few weeks ago I was looking at my photos from our recent NYC trip and realized how much I really needed those Instagram photos from the trip. I sat down and googled "How to Print Instagram Photos." There were lots of DIY tutorials that involved resizing, home printing, etc. That's so not me! (For those of you who do this, I applaud you!) Finally, I came across Prinstagram (http://printstagr.am/) and I was hooked! You log in with your Instagram account, and the rest is easy-peasy! They offer square prints in multiple sizes, little Instagram photo books, and even little stickers of your photos! (A scrapbooker's delight!) I instantly ordered all the prints I had been needing, and then some.

My package arrived this week from Prinstagram, and I couldn't be more pleased! The cardstock is a very nice weight and the photos are definitely art quality. I love them! (They even arrived in a cute, very sturdy mailer!) Here some of my photos:

Also, last but definitely not least, my other find of the week! The photo below shows my NYC Instagram photos enclosed in one of the brand new Becky Higgins Project Life page protector designed specifically for Instagram photos (beckyhiggins.com) - Genius! It's the perfect addition to your standard 12 x 12 layout, and is pre-punched for a 3-ring album. Love it!

I hope this has inspired you to take that first step and print out your Instagram photos!

Friday, August 3, 2012

NYC Simple Stories Album: Progress is Being Made!

My NYC vacation album is coming along! I'm really enjoying working with these little mini canvas size openings in the Simple Stories album. Lots of little pockets to fit memorabilia in, yet the versatility of having traditional pages as well! I've really had fun using washi tape and especially the fabric strips from Studio Calico. (I discovered you can easily stamp on the fabric strips! See the "Bon Voyage" close up below.)

As promised earlier, here are some layouts from my album:
More layouts will follow. I've been so busy trying to enjoy these fleeting days of summer with my kids that it's hard to find time to work on my album. However, that's what's really important, right? So, remember to enjoy the journey and know that there will be plenty of time to scrapbook it all later! :)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Bits and Pieces

Today I started working on my NYC album. (See below post about my 4 day challenge.) Photos are all printed; memorabilia gathered and in one place; yummy papers, stamps and embellishments all pulled and ready to go! Here are a few little peaks:
I'm excited about getting to the actual creating process now! I'll post more photos as the album comes together. Thanks for visiting The Scrappy Girl Next Door!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Vacation Mini Album: I Challenge Myself...

I challenge myself to complete my NYC mini album in 4 days. There, I said it. I put it in writing and now I'm accountable.

I recently read a post on Two Peas In A Bucket where one scrapper only allows herself the same amount of time to complete her travel album as was the trip's length; i.e. - my trip to NYC was four days long, thus, I'm only going to spend four days working on my album. I thought this was a great concept. If you spend more time creating your album than the time you were actually on your trip, it just seems a bit too much. Thus, I decided to take this on as my personal challenge to start and complete my album in four days. (Keep in mind that's four days of actual work time, not four days from today; I have to feed my kids you know!)

If you'd like to also participate in this challenge and scrap some of your summer vacation photos, please comment here and tell us about it! I'd love to hear from you.

So, to get started and to give you a little preview of my album contents, here are a few photos from my recent trip to New York. I will post back soon showing my progress!

Friday, June 22, 2012

A Little Mid-Year Project Life Inspiration

How is everyone doing with their Project Life album? (And if you're unfamiliar with Project Life and Becky Higgins, click on my Project Life button to the right... Loads of fabulous information!) After trying Project Life last year, I learned that I was much better at doing my album monthly, rather than weekly. It just works better for me, and is easier for me to manage.

This post is a little photo-heavy, perhaps, but I thought it might give you ideas on how to store you Project Life supplies (because, hey, that's half the fun, right?) and provide a little PL inspiration for you now that it's summer. Doing PL monthly is very do-able. Even if you haven't been great at doing your album thus far, or if you're just getting started, you could easily do the past six months in one weekend. That's what's so great about Project Life -- you can do it as simply, or as fancy, as you like. I, myself, took the simple approach! Happy Scrapping! :)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

It's the Little Things, You Know...

I feel the need to scrapbook! Just pain old scrapbooking -- no Project Life (I'm loving it, but I'm longing for regular 12 x 12 layouts right now!) and no mixed media projects. I've been on a painting/sketching kick for about 6 weeks now and I think it's time to take a break. I miss SCRAPPING!

So, to help me ease into this week of scrapbooking, I've been participating in the talented Shimelle's online crop (and there's still time to particpate! It runs through the end of this weekend!) Here is the challenge, and below, my version. SEE ORIGNAL CHALLENGE HERE

I love this photo from way back when... These two are now teenagers and what I wouldn't do to go back and visit with them at this stage -- they were two and four! Photos like this are the reason I scrapbook. It just totally takes me back in time, and helps me remember the little things. After all, it really is about the little things in life, isn't it?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Some Of My Favorite Things...

Some photos don't document big milestones in life. Some of my favorite photos, in fact, are pictures of the little things that make life so sweet. This photo just makes me happy!

I glanced at my desk top today and just had to grab my camera. My new Neo Pastels prominently on top of my stack, along with all my favorite supplies for my Project Life album... (Fun little chalk-board container from Target. Love!) All this scrappy goodness AND a glass of Prosecco -- what more could a girl ask for?! Cheers to the little things, my friends, and happy creating!

Friday, March 16, 2012

It's a Party... A Pinterest Party!

It's been a while since I've blogged. My apologies. It's been a busy couple of months... School assignments and house projects never end, so we might as well make our own fun, right?! I did exactly that, and I highly recommend it; I had a Pinterest Party!

"What is a Pinterest Party?," you may ask. Well, I adore Pinterest and welcome any occasion to try out some of my favorite pinned recipes and crafty projects. I decided to invite a few friends over and actually make (gasp!) some of the things we all pin! We made several crafts together (see below) and enjoyed a yummy brunch. The conversation was lively, and the food delicious!

~ Menu ~
Sausage & Caramelized Onion Quiche
Fruit & Yogurt Parfaits
Blueberry Lemon Cake
Chocolate Strawberry Heart Cake
Pomegranate Mimosas
Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Note: The Fruit & Yogurt parfaits, the Blueberry Lemon Cake and the Chocolate Strawberry Heart Cake were all recipes from Pinterest. I would provide those links for you, but they are not my pins. :( I'm sure we can locate them, though, as we are such good Pinterest sleuths!

As you might be able to tell from the below photos, my Pinterest Party was close to Valentine's Day, thus all the pink and hearts!

This is one of the printables I had waiting for my guests (below photo and pin from http://www.lesscakemorefrosting.com) :

I simply sent the free printable to Walmart to be printed, one for each guest. Then, all they had to do was take it home, frame it and instant home decor!

The craft project we made was inspired by this pin:

Pinned from www.thenshemade.com

Here is my version (actually versions, my 10 year old son helped me make a few test samples!):

Note: I first tried out the project myself, then gathered enough supplies for each guest to make her own tree. It's amazing what you can find at The Dollar Tree! That's where I got the little mini terra cotta pots, the skewers with hearts on the top and the moss.

All in all, it was a great treat to get together with friends, learn a few new things, and of course dish about all our cool Pinterest finds! Although my party had a Valentine's theme, I think you could host one seasonally. In fact, just today I thought how fun a Spring Pinterest Party would be: Spring salads, flowery crafts and cute banners with bunnies. How adorable does that sound?

I hope this inspires you to have a Pinterest Party of your own! Happy Pinning!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Color in the Craft Room

I've had fun making a few updates in my craft room this week. I used to have an apple green craft room and realized recently how much I actually missed the color green. I decided to add a punch of color to the room and I love how it turned out!

I found the number canvases at Tuesday Morning and just love them! I think they are perfect for the space, and I think both the colors and design suit the room.

Next, I decided to put all of my mists and paints back in a cute caddy. (When I moved, I thought I preferred some hidden storage of my paints, but guess what? I didn't use them! Out of sight, out of mind...) Not only is this storage container much more convenient, it's fabulous eye candy!

Last but not least, I rearranged some artwork I had in the room, and really like it in a grouping like this:

It's amazing how much little things matter! My room feels new and makes me SO happy! I love the pop of color, and the organization just inspires me to get to work! So, if you're contemplating some changes to your craft space, I say go for it! You need to LOVE the place you create in!