Author Archives: scrapbooknerd

Simple Stories Life in Color – with Barb

Hello everyone.  It’s the end of another Design Team week, here, on Scrapbook Nerd, and I’m here to share my projects for this month.  I was working with the very colourful Simple Stories Life in Color collection.  This collection has been out for a few months now, but every time I look at it I fall in love with it all over again.  I’m a colour junkie and I love the bright, fun colours in this collection.  It’s a fun collection for summer, but it works well for all seasons.  I really love how it’s geared to the everyday life pictures which we all have so many of!


Project 1: Life is Never Dull

I love traveling in the car with my kids, who are no longer kids anymore!  It’s never dull! I had snapped these pictures a year ago and they have been sitting on my phone since then.  I new that this collection would be perfect to showcase them and capture an everyday event!

Project 2: This is our Life

I was able to make all my projects using the Life In Color Paper Pad, wood veneer, and brads. That’s it!. There are so many cut-apart papers that I was able to cut them up and embellish all my layouts very easily.  I love collections like this!

For this layout, I simple used two of the strips from a cut apart sheet and then added a few other bits.  It came together so quickly!

Project 3: Creativation

As many of you already know, Joy and I just spent a week at the CHA Creativation Show in Phoenix.  It was an amazing experience, and one that is hard to capture in a layout.  However, the fun colours, and everyday embellishments were able to help capture the joy and fun that we were experiencing while we were there.

Thanks for checking out my projects this week.  If you haven’t had the chance to check out this fun collection, you need to do so, before it’s gone.  You will be so happy you did!


Lightbox Play – With Barb


Hello everyone!  Welcome to another Scrapbook Nerd Academy with Scrapbook Nerd.

For any of you out there who have seen my Instagram account, or those who know me personally, you know that I am completely addicted to my Heidi Swapp Lightbox!  I love to change it up and leave different messages, or to celebrate a special occasion.  Sometimes, however, what I want to share just isn’t in the premade tiles or strips. Sometimes I just want a pretty background for a message.  On those occasions I head for my computer and print off what I’m looking for.  In this tutorial, I will share just how easy that is.

First, here’s a look at the light box sign I created for this tutorial. I have used the Heidi Swapp original light box, and two of the different Heidi Swapp letter sets.

In order to customize your signs, or to add your own backgrounds or images, you will need inkjet transparencies.  You can find these at any office supply store.

The first thing I do, when looking to add a background image, is head to google images and just start searching for an image related to what I plan on saying on my message. When looking for an image, you want to make sure that the size is large enough. If the image is only 500 pixels x 500 pixels, then it will become very pixelated once you try and make it bigger. An image like this would be fine if you just wanted to print out a small icon, but not for a background.

HINT – in order to see how big the image is, just hover your curser over the image and the dimensions should pop up.  If not, once you save the photo, you can check the size in the image properties. If you’re having problems seeing the size, you should be able to tell if it’s going to look pixelated once you put it into your editing programme and make it larger.)

Once you find your image, save the image, or copy and paste it right into your publishing programme.  When I’m doing my light box sign images, I find it easiest to just copy the image and paste it right into my word programme.

Then I just drag and make my image the size I want.

If you are doing a full-sized background image, like I did on my sign, you will want your image to be no more than 9 inches tall.

Print your photo onto the transparency according to the package instructions. The inkjet transparencies have a coating on the printing side. If you wish to have the smooth side facing out, you will need to mirror your image.  I find that it doesn’t matter when its placed in the lightbox, as you can’t tell, so I print it as it is. However, there are times when I do want the shiny side out, so I will mirror the image.

Once the image is printed you will need to cut the image into three to be able to slide in into the tracks on the lighbox. This is where it can get tricky.

Each track measures about 2 7/8ths high. So, you will need to cut each strip to measure 2 7/8″ high. However, between each track, there is a 1/4″ gap. The photo below shows the side of the lightbox where you can see the gap between each track.

You need to account for the tracks when making your cuts.  If you just cut your image, without taking out the 1/4″ strip between the tracks, your image will look stretched out.  For some images, this won’t matter, but in the case of a photo

To make your cuts:

  1. Make your first cut straight across at the top of your image with your trimmer.
  2. From your first cut measure 2 7/8″ down and cut straight across with your trimmer. That strip should slide right into the top track. It its slightly too big, just trim a little off until it slides in easily.
  3. For the second strip, you will need to cut a 1/4″ off the top of the remaining image piece to account for the 1/4″ track.  (the photo below, which is actually my bottom strip, show me cutting off the 1/4″ to account for the track. without doing this, your image will look stretched out once placed into the lightbox.)
  4. Then you will cut your 2 7/8″ strip for the middle piece. Trim, slightly, if needed, to make it fit.
  5. For the third strip, you will need to cut a 1/4″ off the top of the remaining image piece to account for the 1/4″ track.
  6. Then you will cut your 2 7/8″ strip for the third piece. Trim, slightly, if needed, to make it fit.

Once your image is cut and in place, you can add your message.

Here are some other signs I’ve done by printing my own backgrounds or photos:

This photo, below, would have looked very odd, if I hadn’t taken out the 1/4″ to account for the gap between each track.

This full-sized photo was done in the landscape mode which is smaller than the light box, and so there is a gap at the top, as you can see. I also added text right to the photo as I didn’t want to cover the photo with the letter tiles.

If you don’t have a light box, you need to get one. They are so much fun to play with and there’s so much you can do with them. They are available at Scrapbook Nerd. (they are out of stock right now – but contact us and we will re-order them for you.) We also have many of the accessories that go along with these.

Join us, later this week, for a Facebook Live where we will be demonstrating this, and the new We R Memory Keepers Photo Lights live.  Watch our facebook page for that.

Thanks for checking out the tutorial this week.

Mixed Media on Monday

mixed media Monday at

Hello all,

It’s time for some more mixed media inspiration and as promised I am using the papers
I made in the MMM post two weeks ago. If you want to check out that post
you can click right here.DYI art journal paper
I get so much enjoyment out of creating art journal pages, it’s so relaxing and I just put things on the page. No stressing over choices and lots of colour!
If you have any questions about any part of the process or need some clarification on the techniques I used, please leave me a comment. I would love to hear from you. 🙂

Here we go.
1. I cut up the DIY paper into strips of varying widths and then adhered them to my blank art journal page
Mixed media on Monday

2. Using similar colours of paint and a brayer, I rolled on some colour overtop of the entire page and then started adding some layers with stencils, paint and a sponge.Mixed media on Monday

3. After adding several different stencils, I tore some pages from a magazine and added strips to the page. The next layer I added was some stamping with black Archival inks, then some doodling with a permanent black pen.Mixed media on Monday

4. The finishing touches were added by inking the edge of the entire page with black ink, adding a quote and then adhering the red arrow. When glueing things down, I like to use a matte medium.Perfect is Overrated art journal page by Joy.
Let me know if you have any questions in your comments.
Thank you for visiting with me today, I will be back again next Monday.

Sunday card share #67

Sunday card share at

Have you ever created a project from leftovers?

The card I’m sharing today started with things I had sitting on my desk from other projects that didn’t make the cut then but were still really great for other projects.
I had two pieces of paper, on one I had stamped an image on some woodgrain paper and the other was a foiled a piece of white cardstock. Those two papers became the layers on this card.

Sunday Card Share at - So Very Blessed stamp set by Neat & Tangled

Now because most of this card was complete because of the papers I found on my desk, the rest of it came together quickly.

I heat embossed the So Very Blessed image using Versa Mark ink and black embossing powder and trimmed down the paper to fit on top of the foiled cardstock. All that was left after that was adhering everything to the card base.

It’s great when a project comes together organically like today’s card, it doesn’t happen often for me. I will continue keeping those leftover or used papers and see if I can make some more cards or other projects.

Thank you for visiting the SN blog today.
Happy Sunday!


Joy @

Mixed Media on Monday

mixed media Monday at

Welcome friends,

I wanted to share the process of making some background papers with you this week. I’m going to use & share the projects I create with these homemade papers upcoming posts. Making your own backgrounds can work for a lot of your projects including, collage, cardmaking and scrapbook layouts.

Making your own background paper @
I started with some old pattern papers from my stash, gesso, and an old door key. I added a very thin layer of gesso to both pages, you can see in the photo below how thin the layer of gesso is.Making your own background paper @

I grabbed my paintbox and got to work. I added some colour with my hands on one paper, I used the old door card again on the other sheet.Making your own background paper @
Below you can see the first couple of layers of paint I added. I got out some stencils, a brayer, molding paste, and some other tools to create some texture.Making your own background paper @

You can now see in the photo below the depth on the pages. In some areas, I used the same colour of paint on top of each other with different stencils.
Making your own background paper @

I created one page with warmer colours and the other page with cooler colours.
Making your own background paper @

Below you can see both of the complete papers. In real life, you can still see the original pattern on the paper and on the page on the right the pattern was almost completely covered.
Stayed tuned for some projects using these papers on January 30th.

Making your own background paper @

Next week I will be sharing some of the amazing projects I know I will be seeing at the Creativation Show. Have a great week everyone. 🙂 Joy @

Sunday card share #66

Sunday card share at

Happy Sunday everyone,
It’s Joy here with another card share and today’s share uses distress inks to create a blended background. Whenever I use distress ink in this way I always like the results and, I like to use some water for that splatter effect you see.
Sunday Card Share at - Hello There stamp set by Avery Elle

I used the same distress ink, Salty Ocean, to watercolour the bear’s hat and scarf after stamping the image with Archival Ink.  Now because I was colouring directly on my card base this time I kept my water brush from getting too wet by dabbing off on some paper towel. This helped me to prevent the card base from warping.

My final step was to heat emboss the Hello sentiment using some black Zing! embossing powder, I love the look of the embossed sentiment. In real life, it’s got a shine to it and just pops off the card.

Thank you for visiting the SN blog today, I hope you found some inspiration.

Joy @

Mixed Media on Monday

mixed media Monday at

Welcome to another first for 2017, today is the first Mixed Media on Monday post of the year.
I’ve been a bit void of my usual creative mojo, so getting back into a regular schedule after the holiday’s is good. Do you feel the same after the holiday’s?

I went into this page with two things in mind; fireworks and the new year.

I started with some papers that were lying around on my desk, just to use them up. I ripped up the piece of white cardstock that I embossed for a card but never used and I adhered the papers with Soft Gel Matte. (a list of supplies can be found at the bottom of this post)

I then painted over the page with black gesso in a very messy way leaving some of the white paper exposed for the texture it added. Next I added the stars you see in the photo below with some light modeling paste mixed with gold metallic paint.

After the stars dried I started to mix up Dina Wakley’s heavy bodied paints with water, I wanted them to run on the page.  I dripped some of the watered down paint on to my page then used a straw to blow the paint around. One big breath splattered the paint out and then I could lightly blow in the straw to move the paint some more.

This easy technique creates organic shapes that worked as the fireworks for this art journal page. I added on more colours in the same fashion before adding my sentiment, you can see the finished page below. 
Mixed Media on Monday New Year 2017 art journal page

I hope you enjoyed today’s page and found some inspiration.

I can see myself using this idea for a scrapbook layout too. Just remember if you try this yourself, use some gesso on the page before you start adding the colour so it won’t soak into your paper before you get a chance to move the colour around with a straw.

Happy crafting!

Joy @

Sunday card share #65

Sunday card share at

Hello friends and welcome back,
You might not know it but I love cute dog stamps… well you might know it if you’ve been following the SCS posts. 🙂

Before the holiday break I posted a holiday card (see post here) using the same stamp Happy Howl-iday’s from Avery Elle that I used for today’s post. This cute little dog is great for any type of card you want to send during the winter months.

Sunday Card Share at - Happy Howl-idays stamp set by Avery Elle. Sentiment stamp from Neat & Tangled

The background for this card was created using a stencil with leftover mist on it from another project. Instead of just wiping off the stencil I pressed it on to some watercolour paper, it’s not perfect but that’s okay with me.

Sunday Card Share at

I stamped and heat embossed the Hello sentiment on the inside of the card to finish it off after layering on the die cuts and sentiment on the front of the card.

I hope you enjoyed today’s share and the you found some inspiration.
Now go make something!

Joy @

Crate Paper – Cool Kid – with Barb

Creative Team projects at

Well, it’s the end of the first week on 2017!  How has your week been?  Has it been a creative one?  It has been for me.  I have found my creative sweet spot right now and have been setting aside some time each day to do something creative.  Now, if I can just keep that up!

This week I’ve been playing around with the Crate Paper Cool Kid collection. It’s been in the store for a little while now, but I’ve only now been able to sit down and play with it.  My boys are young adults now, and since this collection works better for younger boys, I went to my niece and begged for some pictures of her two boys. It was so much fun working with her pictures, and working with kiddie pictures again!

I’ve really enjoyed this collection and all the fun embellishments that come along with it.

Project One: Boys Rule

This layout was my feature layout for the tutorial earlier this week.  The tutorial was on stacking to create depth to a project.  You can find that tutorial in the last blog post. I loved playing around with this technique and can’t wait to try it again.

Project Two: Oh, Boys!

This was such a fun layout to work on. Those pictures just kept cracking me up!

O love how quickly these layouts all came together.  This collection makes it so easy to layer embellishments. There are so many embellishment options!


Project Three: Cool Kids

I love the colour combination of this collection – the fun, bold colours are perfect for boys … not to mention the fun patterns!

Thanks for checking out my projects this week.  I hope you have time to get creative with the photos of your own “cool kids”.


Tuesday Tutorial – Stacking for Dimension

Step by Step paper crafting projects

Step by Step paper crafting tutorials

Hello everyone!  Welcome to 2017 and our first Scrapbook Nerd Academy of this brand new year!  We are hoping that this year brings you lots of creative inspiration and lots of time to play. We also hope that our Tuesday Tutorials can play a part in inspiring you to get creative!

During some of my internet wanderings I came across this card tutorial on Lori Whitlock”s Blog and loved the stacked look which added a lot of depth to the card.  I decided to give it a try on a layout.  My goal was to do somewhat of a shadow box effect. I’m not sure if I managed to create that effect, but I do love the finished product and how the stacking draws the viewer’s eye into the page.  I will be trying this again, but possibly with more stacks to try and achieve the shadow box effect a little better.

First, here’s a look at the finished layout:

How I did it:

Supplies: I used the Crate Paper Cool Kid collection, 5 sheets of white cardstock, something to cut circles in varying sizes with – I don’t have a large format Silhouette – I own the Portrait. So to cut out the circles I used a very old tool called the Coluzzle, adhesive

The first step was to determine the size and placement of the circles. I started with the largest circle on the top piece of cardstock. I made a template for my largest circle and positioned them onto my cardstock.

Since I wasn’t using my silhouette to make my circles, I needed to make sure that all my circles lined up evenly.  To do this, I pulled out my new tool – the Laser Square by We R Memory Keepers. I love this tool!

Once my circle templates were positioned, I took a pencil and traced them so I would know where to make my cuts with the Coluzzle.

Then I cut the circles using my Coluzzle.

Once the top piece of cardstock was cut with the largest circles, I used that sheet to trace the circles onto the second sheet so I had a guide for where to cut the next smaller-sized circles.

I followed the same procedure two more times.

Once I finished cutting the circles, I stacked the sheets of cardstock – the sheet with the smallest circles on the bottom and the largest on the top.

After erasing the pencil lines, I placed my two photos under the circles where I wanted them, and then patterned paper under the other ones. On the circles with the patterned paper I place some printed die-cuts.

Then, it was quick to add my title and a few embellishments to the top right corner.

I’m looking forward to trying this technique again and playing with even more dimension.

I hope this has inspired you to try this out. If you do, I would love to see your finished project, so be sure to link it up in the comments here, or on our facebook page.

Thanks for checking out my tutorial. Be sure to come back next Tuesday for another tutorial by our Design Team.