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OctAfternoon

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Gettin' grid-y with it

First, let me just say "Thank you" for all of the kind comments and warm welcome. I am "pee my pants" excited to be guest designing for October Afternoon and all of you!  I can’t think of a brighter or more cheery line to convey excitement and fun than the Midway line, so today’s post is going to feature Midway and grid-based design. I can't wait to share some awesome projects with you, so let's get started shall we?

This year I decided that I wanted one of my scrapbooking goals to be staying current with my pages. Okay ... truth be told, this is one of my goals every year, but I really mean it this time! I think it’s so much easier to scrapbook things while they’re still fresh in your mind and before you’ve had a chance to misplace memorabilia or photos. I do have to say that the thought of actually keeping current seems like a pretty daunting task, so I’ve also been looking for ways to make scrapbooking easier and more efficient.

Being that I am totally a “grid girl,” I am very much intrigued by all of the divided page protector options that have come out recently. The ease and simplicity of slipping things into designated places calls to me, but it seems to be oriented toward “flat” scrapbooking (limiting page elements
to flat stickers, die cuts, patterned paper and the like). Since I’m a girl who loves texture and scrapbooks as much for the “art” of the hobby as I do for the purpose of collecting and documenting memories, this just wasn’t going to work for me.

So I thought back to my early days as a scrapbooker and my love for grids. If you think about it, when you break down the design of divided page protectors, they really are just grids.  …Grids that can be adapted, modified, and used as the basis for a traditional layout. And that, my friends, was my “Eureka!” moment. (It’s also what started me on my quest to search for grid-based design inspiration that I could start adapting in layouts.)

I started out basing a page layout on a common divided page protector style and adapted it to fit the number of photos I had.

50126_lrg
*Image Source: We R Memory Keepers*

This page protector design called for 4 photos and 4 journaling card spots, but I only had a couple of photos for that day, so I used half of the grid design to create my layout. Here’s a sketch of the layout in its simplest form:

Jan01-2013_rough-sketch_web

Here’s another thing I do to help stay current. Since I can’t always scrapbook something right away, I make mockups of the layout using the manufacturer’s product images and design software. In addition to being able to record the ideas while they’re fresh, this also gives me an opportunity to try different colors and arrangements without the fear of wasting supplies. Here’s the sketch above with the Midway elements added in.

Jan01-2013_complete_sketch_web

Then, when it’s time to scrap, I basically just assemble the layout from my mockup. Putting the page together goes quickly because the paper and picture sizes are already determined – no worrying about not cutting something to the right size or wondering where to place it. I can just glue and go!

DSCN4524_WEB_WMK

DSCN4526_WEB_WMK

So this got me wondering what else I could adapt to create the foundations for my pages? And then, I came across this ... an image filled with arrangements for a gallery wall.

Gallerie

Source: http://interiorspl.com/strona-gwna/galerie-bez-tajemnic.html

For this next layout, I started with the gallery arrangement that is fifrth from the bottom in the right column and built a quick sketch to get an idea for the scale and sizing of my photos and background paper. (I chose to keep the same orientation as the gallery example, but this would work well rotated 90 degrees too.)

Birthday_sketch_bkgnd_web

And from there, I mocked up the placement of the main elements including the photos, title, and a few embellishments.

Birthday_sketch_web

To make assembly easier for myself, I printed out the placement boxes onto the patterned paper and placed a rule around the photos so I’d know where to trim them.

DSCN4516_WEB_WMK

I typically limit my mockups to the overall “structure” of the page, and then work in extra embellishments as I put the layout together. Here’s how the mockup came to look when it was all finished:

DSCN4548_WEB_WMK

I wanted the letters to be in the darker pink color so they would stand out better against the gray background. When I sprayed the “naked” chipboard letters they came out very dull as the gray chipboard color was coming through and muddying the sprinklers color. Not at all what I had in mind!

To solve that problem, I covered the letters with gesso, and let that dry before reapplying the sprinklers ink. (Using gesso prevents the ink from soaking into the chipboard and the white basecoat keeps the color of the sprinklers true.)

DSCN4521_WEB_WMK
Letters with gesso applied at top. Letters with sprinklers
applied directly to chipboard, bottom.

Once the gesso dried, I applied the sprinklers ink to the letters by unscrewing the pump and painting with the little side of the plastic tube that sucks the ink into the spray pump. (Why dirty a brush if you don’t need to, right?) Painting the color directly from the bottle allows you to get a more intense color without using a lot of mist.

See how much more vibrant and intense the color is?

DSCN4549_WEB_WMK

I hope you found today's post inspirational and I'm looking forward to seeing your take on some grid based layouts. Have a happy, scrappy weekend!

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