Friday, 27 January 2012

Pre-LOAD212 Blog Hop

Welcome to the LOAD 212 Blog Hop!

I'm so thrilled to see you here, whether you are a fellow LOADster or one of my regular blog friends. Please DO leave me a comment to let me know you were here.

If you've arrived here from Jennifer, then you are on the right track and if you've come here directly, you might want to go back to the beginning and drop in on Margie where the hop fun starts. You are bound to pick up a whole LOAD of tips and tricks if you check us all out :-) (pun intended!)

Anyway, it's almost February which means that LOAD 212 is just hours away and this blog hop is not only to get my brain into gear and prepared to start but also to help some of the newbies get to know what to expect. The first time can be a little overwhelming but we are here to help! Many of us have done this several times and it IS possible, as crazy as it sounds. And it's the most fun you'll have scrapping, that's for sure!

February 2011's LOAD wrap up page
So, today I'd again like to repeat, cut and paste and generally offer some of the advice and suggestions I've put forward before for making a layout every single day for a month. I've taken my posts from earlier and updated them a bit it so hopefully there is something for everyone even if you think it looks familiar!  I've added in some of my wrap up pages and the beautifully indulgent piles of completed layouts at the end of each LOAD - if those piles don't get you motivated, I don't know what will ;-)

For those of you who are new to the idea of LOAD, it can be done. Many of us have several LOADs under our belt with 100% layout completion! And boy, do we feel good at the end of the month.

But at the same time, it's not essential to commit to a layout a day - some members just join in the fun when they can and find that they get a lot more done than they normally would and that makes them feel good too. 

The key is to do what you can. And my number one tip is to keep it fun

As soon as it's just a slog, that might be a sign to give it a break and maybe try something non-scrappy for a day or two. Life gets in the way - we all understand! Kids need feeding and houses need to be kept, oh and there's that little thing called a job! Life is busy for us all so do what you can and enjoy it.

May 2011 wrap up page
Saying that, I've continued to have fun now for 8 LOADs (which includes two informal LOADs) and have completed more than 250 layouts just in those months. Again, that makes me very happy! I managed FOUR months of daily layouts in 2011 if you can believe it and I'm raring to go again this time around. Even when it feels like it's taking too much time, or I feel a bit uninspired at the start of the day, I always feel good when I've taken the time to create and have uploaded my finished page to Flickr and have taken the time to see what my fellow LOADsters have created! And I feel even better when I look at my pile of creations.

My July 2011 wrap up page
** Even if you are not participating in LOAD, I am sure you can find something here that might help you speed up your process or even something to inspire you to join in next time. I use these techniques pretty much every time I create. I am a very slow scrapper but I still manage to make dozens of pages most months. **

February's LOAD. I really got into my stride this time around and February is a great time of the year to do LOAD - really gets those creative juices flowing.
May was a mixed month with lots and lots of colour and dimension and distressing. 

Informal LOAD in July (the one I did with Pam!) Such a bright month - I think I was influenced by Pam's colourful scrapping and her happy personality.

Informal LOAD in October 2011 - so much dimension here!

This is a list you may have seen before but I'm posting it again as it really is the way I approach most of my scrapping. I've edited it a little to keep it updated and have changed the order to reflect the steps that we might have to go through to get our layouts done. Let me know if that makes sense :-)
  1. Clear space:I tidy up my scrapping space after each project. Completely. And for those of you who know me, you'll appreciate this is difficult and unnatural for me. I'm naturally an untidy person! But I put every scrap, pen, glue stick, ruler or ink-pad etc back where they belong - even if I take it back out again after 2 minutes. Clear space = clear mind. Now, if I could only apply that to the rest of my life...  
  2. Use that stash: I see this as an opportunity to use up papers and products that have been lying around a long time but that I still love. This is not the time to be precious. I will not be buying any new stash at all for this month but I have several partially used up Counterfeit Kits from August through to January and there will be my February kit, as well as a page kit I've committed to create, to use. Making up your own kits (CKC is a wonderful resource for this) can make your own products feel like new as you combine them in new ways. Make sure you can see the products that are inspiring you at the moment or that you want to use up - if you have them in view, they are more likely to be used up. And think about the excuse you will have to go out and stock up again when you have finished as you will have used up SO much of your stock!
  3. Preparation: Each day I think about what I might scrap. What picture I might use. What I have to say that day. If I have a bit of free time (I travel on public transport and so have a lot of time to kill!), I might even write my journalling out to a story that has come to mind. And I have a pile of photos - good, bad and a lot in between - on my table, and my storage binders to hand. Often, I just have a bit of a rummage, see what catches my eye and am off. This month, Lain has created prompts for us to mine our own stories from the past and I'm excited to see how that works for me. I have a lot of older photos and it would be lovely to remember some stories to go with them. In the past, I've checked out the prompt early in the day and let it stew in my mind until the evening when I will decide if I'm following it or not. I more than not follow the prompt but really, I'm not going to let that stop me if I have a brainwave of another idea. If the prompt doesn't resonate with me, I will either just store the idea for another day or ignore it and do my own thing. I have to say though, that even if the prompt hasn't jumped out at me at first, I will often find that the layout I've made using it is one that I love
  4. Sketches/Pinterest/Favourites: I have Page Maps 1 & 2 books and I love them. I use them all the time. There are a million and one sources online for sketches including Page Maps itself where you can find all the archives as well as the new month, or another great site is Sketch Support, which also breaks their sketches down into one or two pagers. Pinterest is fabulous as long as it doesn't turn into a time sucker. I have a board just for pages and I have found myself turning to that over and over again in recent months. I've tried out lots of new techniques and styles from this board so I know that I can find inspiration in there. And of course, my Flickr favourites is full to overflowing with favourite layouts and creations from previous LOADs. So so so many beautiful layouts that can give me the inspiration I'm looking for.
  5. Glue & Go: I learned this on my Heidi Swapp class in 2007. Yes, I move things around a bit before I decide on position, but I'm talking 2 or 3 minutes, not all evening. (If that's not working, try walking away for ten minutes then come back and go for it.) Then, it's Glue & Go. And live with the result. And love the result!
  6. Handwritten journalling: In the past, I've hand-written almost all my journalling when time is short. No, I don't particularly like my handwriting. But it's mine and there's not a lot to be done. Hand-writing is quick, easy and I don't need 16 attempts at getting it just so. If the hand-writing goes a bit skew-whiff, I accept it. It's typical Lisa to have a few mistakes in there after all. Saying that, I love strip journalling and with practice this can be done quickly and easily on the computer. But I'm not hooked on only having printed journalling. It's probably a 60% hand written ratio for me.
  7. Quick techniques: I try to return techniques such as border punches, inking the edges,  distressing or clustering which give good results with minimum effort and time. Although I might do a bit of stamping you won't find a lot of that on my pages - it's too hit and miss, and very time-consuming for me. Not to mention the fact that the ink ends up in places it really doesn't belong... several ruined tops later...
  8. Perfection is over-rated: I'm not the first to state this (Lain reminds us again and again), but it's so true. If you are doing work for a design team or a magazine, then it might be appropriate to get things just right - I check spelling, straighten things up, write and rewrite my journalling until it's just so. But the layouts for LOAD or in fact, just for me? They very often contain a mistake or ten! Over inked? Not quite straight? Colours not perfectly matched? Glue showing? Embellies not optimally placed? No problem, move on!
  9. Be part of the LOAD community: The community in our LOAD Flickr group is wonderful. I make sure I make the most of it. I spend (way too much) time in the gallery getting inspired and commenting on layouts. I know how thrilled I am when I get supportive positive feedback on my uploads and so I try to pass on the love. Even if you just look at the last 5 or 10 uploads before yours in the gallery you'll be amazed at the talent and creativity out there. I make sure that I "favourite" those that I really love and am inspired by so that I can go back to them again and again. Scraplifting is the highest form of flattery after all! And the message board is great too. I go in and read the latest and use it for tips and tricks or generally connecting with my fellow LOADsters. It's a great resource.  I've made some wonderful scrapping friends over the last year through LOAD and this is really special.
  10. Have FUN: Possibly the most important thing that I remind myself is to have fun. I'm supposed to be enjoying myself. No pressure. This is a hobby and nothing to be taken too seriously. Life gets in the way sometimes and if that happens, then I will not stress about it, I will just do what I can. I make sure I'm enjoying the process. I might experiment. I mix it up. I will use different products, different photos, different colours. More or less journalling. 4x6 photos one day and then chopped up or tiny photos the next. This way, I don't feel like I'm slogging through something. Now that might work for you - the target of a completed themed album for example - but I save those kind of projects for when I'm not under time pressure. I like to play and do different things every day. I'll be telling stories, using up product, preserving memories, remembering happy times. And that IS fun!

From back in May 2010

And finally to share with you today, my final page for LOAD October 2010

So, take a deep breath, clear off your scrap space, print off your photos, stock up on your adhesives, collect your supplies so that they are near to hand and enjoy the ride! 

The next stop for you will be Monica at her blog Scrap Inspired and the whole list of bloghop participants is...

Lisa       <---- You are here
Monica       <---- Your next stop

Have fun and thanks so much for dropping by - make sure you let me know you were here!


  1. Lynnette4:48 pm

    As always, super advice for a successful LOAD. Looking forward to jumping in and scrapping this month. It's just the push I need right about now :)

  2. I need to do the clear my desk thing. That's what I have trouble with, and before I'm halfway through LOAD, I'm down to a spot about 6x6 to work on. Love all your piles of pages. Love how that pile makes me feel.

  3. I have always admired you, your layouts, your creativity. . . thanks for making LOAD exciting, challenging and FUN! See you on Flickr!

  4. I can't imagine clearing off my workdesk after each day of LOAD. It sounds enticing, but could I do i?! Sounds like such a luxury to work with a clean desk every day... I can dream. Great tips and maybe I'll try that on the first couple days and see how I do. :)

  5. So many beautiful layouts. Love it. I could agree with you more. I love how e process of LOAD pushes us rondo things we didn't think possible. It's amazing in many ways. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Thanks for the inspiration and ideas!

  7. What a great post, I've made a note of it because I'd like to revisit it and maybe see if I could follow along.

  8. Oh I am in such awe of you! I want to do this but with being so sick I am not sure i would get a layout done every night. Do other projects count? I would think so as long as you are creating and having fun right?

  9. Love your LOAD layouts - very inspiring. #9 is a bit of a landmine for me, though. I love the community, but it also is a time drain for me. I'll have to participate only AFTER uploading my page!

  10. Thanks for the links and 10 tips. I'm going to take your first one... clean up every night, particularly to heart (like you, I'm a bit messy)!

  11. Lisa, love your gorgeous piles. I need to work on Glue & Go myself a bit. Love your May 2010 wrap up page...have to remember that one since after several wrap up pages things start to look the same. See you in 5 days!!!!!

  12. How I love this post, Lisa! Love seeing all your wrap up layouts and your PILES of completed pages. It does feel so good to see the ever increasing pile as the month goes on! I have to say to the community really does spur me on to keep going! This group has been such a blessing! See you on Wednesday!

  13. I am so impressed with all those piles of pages! Good for you! You make such a great point about handwritten journaling. I don't like mine at all, but you are so right -- you can write it and it's done. I've been doing a lot of digi-scrapping, so handwriting isn't really an issue for that. Great post, so many helpful thoughts.

  14. Great post and very cool layouts! Can't wait! Great advice and blog hop. See you there.

  15. our July LOAD was one of the funnest things I did last year. I am so glad I met you through this community. You have become a special friend and I will forever be grateful to LOAD for that. LOVE YOU!

  16. Heidi5:48 am

    to my fave person in Germany - xo I've been here! See you next week! xo Heidi in Canada
    p.s. Did you know that I am a bit German? No seriously. I'm not kidding. (Even though I know you're not German ;) ) Dad's side - his mom's line... :) Learn something new everyday -- I know.

  17. Hi Lisa, your page are amazing and your process is great. I hear you about putting things back when you have used them, I must admit I'm untidy scrapper to I'll put something down and spend 15 minutes re-looking for it and it does my head in. So I will really try hard to do this.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Deborah your Aussie newbie LOADster.

  18. Wow, Lisa - your layouts are amazing. I liked your tip about putting things away after each project though I don't ever do it. I'm obsessed with keeping the rest of my house clean, but my scrapbook room is a mess all of the time and the frustration I feel when I can't find something that I *just had* drives me nuts. In fact, there's a pair of Tim Holtz scissors around here somewhere and I've yet to find them. HAHA. I think that this tip is the one I'm going to try to incorporate throughout the month. It sure will help to save time and keep the frustration to a minimum. Thanks for the post. I can't wait to see your creations.

  19. Hi Lisa Thanks so much for this post, and your great advice! I always enjoy your layouts and your sweet comments!

  20. I love that you did a layout of all your layouts each LOAD! Assuming I ever finish a LOAD I will have to remember to do that!!

  21. I'm so happy that we'll be doing LOAD again! I've been busy organizing my craft space, stocked up on adhesive and ready to go!

  22. Oh I can't wait, I guess I'd better starting doing some prep too. No matter if I make it every day or miss a few, I know I will get lots and lots of scrapping done. Did I say - I can't wait!!

  23. LCSmithSAVED2:41 am

    Perfect, Lisa!

  24. normally I would say I don't clear my desk, but when doing LOAD I don't do it in my craft room, making clearing important every day! thanks for the other tips. I think I need to check my adhesive stash.

  25. Love your post!!!

  26. Thanks for sharing your tips and ideas.
    Looking forward to see your pages in February!

  27. Wow! Seeing all those stacks has to feel great! Good motivation for me. Love the advice of "Glue and go." Once its down, its down!! See you in the gallery.

  28. Hi Lisa! this is going to be soooo fun!

  29. Thanks so much for easing my mind and making me feel more comfortable!!

  30. Thanks for the load advice. I just jumped in to LOAD 15 min before it started so I am floundering around a little getting organized. Blog hopping to pick up some tips from all you LOAD Veterans.


I love comments! Thanks for taking the time. <3 <3 <3


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...