a new door for Tacy

it's a process

With any project I do, there is a process that is taken to get from start to finish. It is this process where you can learn about yourself as an artist, how you make the design decisions that you do, if you take the same approach or a different one with each project, how you can learn from mistakes and grow in your skills.

I photographed the steps in my process in creating the projects for this month's Papertrey Ink set, Little Lady. I hope you enjoy my journey that I took to create my samples...

When it came to choosing colors, I went for a pink palette vs. the red. I am always inspired by the Pottery Barn Kids catalog and the Little lady ladybugs would most definitely fit among it's pages. And if they did, I bet they would be pink!


I started by randomly stamping the body shapes on the papers. I actually start many of my projects this way. I play with colors and positioning. My actual layout comes a little later.


Now I went in and did the 2-step stamping over the top. Isn't it amazing how the images just start to come to life?


I added all my antennas and even some flowers, now I start to decide how I am going to cut my images apart. The trimmer that I use is the Fiskars on that I got when I first started demonstrating (5 years ago!). It is outdated and beat up - I am really tempted by the new line in stores now. It's time for a something new!


As I cut, I might stamp more details, like this background. I mounted the dot and small flower together on the block to stamp in my background.


Here are my cut apart images. At this point I have an idea of what might become a card or what I might use on a scrapbook page. Of course, that can always change. (Ignore that blank piece of kraft paper, it looks like it's supposed to be something, but it's not...)


I thought it would be nice to have some coordinating ribbons for my cards, stamped with the Faux Ribbon set. I used the mini double dot stamp from Little Lady to make my polka dot ribbon!


Here is the first set of focal images accented with the faux ribbon and brads. I also ran my white pad along the side of the kraft paper before I mounted it onto the white. The white is not cut with the trimmer. I adhere my main image to the white cardstock and just use a scissor to trim around the edge. When the border is so tiny, and especially if you are going to distress the edges, having a super straight edge isn't a big deal.


Here is the finished set.


Next I moved onto the images stamped with the lighter pink on the darker cardstock. This time I distressed my edge on the pink mat.


I trimmed the edge of this ladybug border off - I thought it would be a good accent to use on the edge of one of my cards.


Here is the finished second set.


Lastly, I started laying out ideas for a scrapbook page. I had 2 possible border/color ideas.


After choosing my pictures I settled on this combination for my page.


I had added some ribbon accents to the accent image block, but ended up not liking how it was working on the layout. I moved the ribbons directly to the page, cut out the ladybug and used dimensionals to add it to the page. The antennae are stamped directly on the photo. I also added some sewing and the mini scallop border around the edge of the page.

Next was journaling, which I really feel that I am not good at. I try to layout in my head what I want to say, the story I want to tell. Sometimes I print journaling from the computer, but I really want to get better at writing directly on my page.


After I added the metal corner accents, I had my finished page!

So there you go, my process for my projects this time around. It really seems to work similarly with many of the projects that I do. Some times I will work with sketches, but working "organically" (taken directly from the show Project Runway!) feels right to me. I think even when I do work with sketches, some organic designing takes place. You might of noticed that I didn't use everything that was originally stamped when I started, and that is okay. It's okay to save it for later and it's okay to throw it away and start fresh. The other thing is that this process wasn't compete in a couple of hours, this took place over the course of a couple days. So, no need to rush. Good things take time.

Take some time to look at what your process is when it comes to designing something on your own, or even just working to recreate a project you admire. I bet you will learn a lot about yourself.

And head on over to Papertrey Ink to pick up the Little Lady set and any other set you don't have and really should...