Industry News & Reviews

My Product Picks – Summer Releases 2015!

Have you been watching all the scrapbook companies release their latest products over the last couple of months? I was too busy to keep an eye on it, especially as they all spread their releases out now that there’s no big summer CHA show.

However, I did sit down a couple of weeks ago to use the links from Scrapbook Update HERE, and Scrappy Jedi HERE, as well as scrolling back on manufacturer blogs, so that I could see all the new goodies!

My Product Picks Summer 2015 at Jennifer Grace Creates

Here’s my product picks of all the latest things I’d like to buy when they hit the shops. The titles and the photos are linked to the full reveals. I’m going to start with the everyday-themed items then move on to the Christmas collections & stamps…

Non-Christmas

Pink Paislee Cedar Lane:

 Pink Paislee Cedar Lane

Autumn is my favourite season, though we don’t get as many golden colours here in Dorset as we used to in Essex where I grew up. But that’s okay as I can console myself with this collection – full of fall hues and heart-warming phrases.

I especially like the ephemera, with the leafy wreath and the ‘snuggle up’ golden words:

Pink Paislee Cedar Lane Ephemera

American Crafts – Amy Tangerine Finders Keepers:

Amy Tangerine Finders Keepers

I have become a big fan of Amy Tangerine and Her YouTube videos lately. This colourful collection is perfectly her style – colourful, quirky, fun!

I am drooling over the wood slices and the wooden stamp set. I don’t know how much I’d use the pineapple stamps but I want them anyway:

Amy Tangerine Finders Keepers

Crate Paper Wonder:

 Crate Paper Wonder

This is such a cute childhood collection. It’s filled with whimsical characters and pretty icons. I really like the puffy stickers which features houses and the little animal faces.

But the item I want most of all is the wood veneer framework in the shape of a house:

Crate Paper Wonder Frame

I can totally imagine me filling this with pretty things!

Jillibean Soup Mix The Media – Wood:

There’s a few different wood plank shapes on the reveal, but the one I really want is this star. It would be great for any time of year:

Jillibean Soup Mix The Media Wood Star

Christmas

My Mind’s Eye Christmas On Market Street:

 My Mind's Eye Christmas On Market Street

This collection is just so gorgeous. I want to wrap my house up in it at Christmas time! I love the mix of teal, red and gold, and the swirly writing, and all the decorated antlers.

The glittery puffy stickers are the bit I love the most. This product photo below doesn’t do them justice, see THIS PHOTO that MME posted on Instagram where you can see a snippet of how sparkly they are. I must have them:

My Mind's Eye Christmas On Market Street Stickers

Pinkfresh Studio Christmas Wishes:

 Pinkfresh Studio Christmas Wishes

The character in this winter collection are just so full of personality! It’s the most unique Christmas collection I came across – I feel like it’s something I’ve never seen before and it would make my projects feel super special.

I really love the stamp set and the puffy stickers:

Pinkfresh Studio Christmas Wishes Puffy Stickers

Cocoa Vanilla Tis The Season:

 Cocoa Vanilla Tis The Season

This collection is pretty! The soft minty blue is stunning!

These stars look so shiny. And they’d look good on projects all year round:

Cocoa Vanilla Tis The Season

Lawn Fawn Christmas Stamps:

These two stamp sets from Lawn Fawn have totally stolen my heart. You can expect to see some projects using them during Frosty Festivities 2015. Isn’t the snowglobe totally perfect?!:

Lawn Fawn Christmas Stamps

Hero Arts – Kelly Purkey Stamps:

I also really like these smaller (3×4″) stamp sets, designed by Kelly Purkey for Hero Arts. The ‘joy’ brush-writing sentiment is gorgeous and I love the patterns on the trees. These sets would be good for layouts as well as cards & tags:

Hero Arts Kelly Purkey Stamps

I want to stamp some little trees, cut them out, then tie them around a candle jar!

So those are the items I’d like to buy. I won’t be able to afford them all but I’m sure some of them will slide into my online baskets! Especially the Christmas stuff – I can’t run Frosty Festivities without them, can I?!

What have you spotted recently that you’d like to get your hands on? Anything from my list?

Have a great day,

Jennifer x

Your Craft & Soul Events

The Focus Your Craft & Soul Welcome and Grand Giveaway! {NOW CLOSED}

(This post is part of my Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Event – see the list of all the posts HERE!)

Hello and welcome to the start of my FREE blog event. It’s time to…

Focus Your Craft & Soul!

Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Event at Jennifer Grace Creates 15th-17th May 2015

If you haven’t heard about this event before, then here are the details: This weekend (15th-17th May 2015) from 4pm – 10pm Friday and 10am – 10pm Saturday and Sunday (BST) there will be posts going live EVERY HOUR! There will be lots of crafts, tutorials, challenges, tips, a blog hop, and of course some lovely giveaways!

All giveaways AND challenges are open for entry until Sunday the 24th of May at 10pm BST {NOW CLOSED} so you’ve got a week to join in.

The theme for the event is loosely based on my word-of-the-year ‘Focus’. This will cover a variety of ideas on how to focus your crafting, about living in the moment, making sure you appreciate the little things, and how to use focal points. We’ll also be using a lot of icons like targets, frames, arrows, triangles, and cameras!

Let’s kick things off with the Grand Giveaway! {NOW CLOSED}

The Focus Your Craft & Soul Grand Giveaway at Jennifer Grace Creates! Closes 24th May 2015 at 10pm BST

One lucky person will win this prize package. It contains…

Big Things:

4 sheets of Simple Stories 12×12 paper (I Am ‘4×4 Elements’ and ‘Beautiful’, Life Documented ‘The Daily Lens’, and Daily Grind ‘Rise & Shine’)

3 sheets of Crate Paper 12×12 paper (Craft Market ‘Pattern’ glitter paper and ‘Studio’, and Journey ‘Tribal’)

Simple Stories I Am 12×12 Fundamentals Stickers

A Heidi Swapp 12×12 Stencil (Arrows)

A My Mind’s Eye 6×6 Pad (Just Splendid)

Embellishments:

Freckled Fawn Puffy Alpha Stickers (Pink) and Wood Chips (Arrows), AC Shimelle True Stories Camera Stamp, Crate Paper Journey Puffy Stickers and half a pack of Craft Market Wood Veneer Embroidery Hoops (winner gets 3), half a pack of Simple Stories I Am Chipboard Frames (winner gets 12), AC Pink & White Bakers Twine and Teal Polkadot Ribbon.

So how do you get the chance to win these goodies?

We’re going back to the old way to win the grand giveaway – by commenting! You could just leave a comment on this post – that will give you one entry into the draw. But every comment on any post that goes live this weekend will count as another entry into the draw!

You will only be entered into the Grand Giveaway if you have commented on this welcome post. That way if you don’t want to win the prize – maybe you already own all these goodies (?!) – then don’t comment here, but you can still comment on all the other posts this weekend (including all the other giveaways) without being entered.

To tempt you to enter, and show you what can be done with some of the items in the prize pack, here’s a brooch I made using the same supplies…

Wood Veneer Hoop Brooch:

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

To make one for yourself:

1. Draw around the hoop wood veneer on some patterned paper.
2. Cut the circle out, and stick a phrase on – I cut the ‘on a journey’ phrase up so it didn’t cover up all the arrows on the paper.
3. Add some Mod Podge or other wet glue around the back of the wood hoop.
4. Press the circle onto the glue. If any seeps out onto the front of the circle then smooth it out with a piece of kitchen paper.
5. You can also add some Mod Podge around the edge of the hoop to make sure the paper is sealed at the edges.
6. Stick on a brooch-back using Glossy Accents or a similar strong glue.
7. When the Glossy Accents is dry flip the brooch over and finish decorating the front. I stuck half the butterfly stick straight onto the hoop and used a foam dot under the other half to make sure it was level.

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

I will add a brooch-back into the prize package in case the winner wants to make this too!

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

Be Inspired:

Use some papercrafting supplies to make a brooch

Fill a negative space (eg inside a circle) with some arrow patterned paper

Cut up a phrase to make it fit your project

Make sure you have ‘liked’ the Jennifer Grace Creates Facebook Page if you want to chat during the event. If you enjoy the blog posts during the weekend it would be great if you could share the posts on Pinterest or other social media, or post your projects to my Facebook page etc (you can hashtag #focusyourcraft on anything to do with this event). It makes my hard work worth it when I see my posts, or your projects inspired by them, popping up all over the place!

Don’t forget to comment here to be entered into the Grand Giveaway! The giveaway is open internationally, and it will close at 10pm (BST) on Sunday the 24th of May. {NOW CLOSED}

I see you again at 5pm! Are you excited that the event has started?!

Jennifer x

Industry News & Reviews

CHA 2015 Product Picks!

I would love to go to the big CHA show in America one year. For now though I have to make do with stalking the manufacturer blogs and drooling over new goodies from afar!

This is a round up of the things which are exciting me the most, that I just can’t wait to get my hands on! I’m posting them here to remind me of the things I want to buy, and to show them off to you in case you missed the reveals (I cannot be held responsible if this makes you spend money when they hit the shops… if you’re on a spending freeze look away now)!

My CHA 2015 Product Picks…

My Cha 2015 Product Picks at Jennifer Grace Creates

Heidi Swapp Minc Machine

Heidi Swapp Minc Machine

Um, yeah, this is awesome. A machine for foiling and making things shiny! I’ve already ordered one from Create & Craft TV HERE, though they are sold out at the moment – I’m not surprised, even non-crafters who I’ve shown the Minc videos (like THIS ONE) too have oohed-and-aahed over it! You can use it to foil Heidi Swapp’s matching collection of tags, papers, etc, or you can make your own with a laser printer or toner copier (it doesn’t work with inkjet printers).

I haven’t always been a lover of foiled things, mainly because they are soooo hard to photograph and I put almost everything I make onto this blog. But they have been growing and growing on me, and my Gingerbread House page and my Ready for Christmas page are my favourite layouts from my the end of last year, because the gold foil is so pretty.

I also loved the idea of different coloured foils, so I’ve ordered hot pink, teal, and mint foils with my machine. I can’t wait to start playing! You can expect to see some shiny things in my Etsy shop soon too! Here’s the choices of foils:

Heidi Swapp Minc Foils

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss Collection

Oh this just feels so refreshing to look at! It’s got perfect springtime colours but with a bit of a summery twist with the flamingoes and lemons. I like that this will extend the use of the collection.

I can see me using it for lots of projects. I especially like the puffy stickers – they are so cute and the variety of sizes is good for me:

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss Collection

Crate Paper Journey

Crate Paper Journey Collection

Crate Paper are good at bringing out collections that I want to buy, and this one is trendy and interesting! Some of the icons are a bit too USA related, but they don’t dominate it so I can overlook that. Especially when it means you get cute camper-vans, feathers, arrows, and cork and glitter details!

I’m most looking forward to getting the ephemera set. We’re bound to go camping at some point this year, so these will come in handy for scrapbooking our adventures:

Crate Paper Journey Collection

Simple Stories I Am

Simple Stories I Am Collection

The concept of this collection appeals to me – it’s all about documenting our own stories. I could imagine making a mini-book with this about my life before kids, which I could share with them.

The ‘I am’ quote is a great page title starter for when you’re stuck for title ideas too! The thing I want most from this collection is these stickers, which include lots of ‘I AM’ quotes in different colours:

Simple Stories I Am Collection

Pinkfresh Studio Up In The Clouds

Pinkfresh Studio Collection

Pinkfresh Studio have been producing some gorgeous colourful embellishments for a while, but now they are also bringing out papers to make a whole collection release. Up In The Clouds is bright and playful which fits my style!

One of the items I love is the 3×4 cards, as they look like they were fun to design and would add so much life to my projects:

Pinkfresh Studio Collection

Chickaniddy Crafts 365

Chickaniddy Crafts 365 Collection

The 365 collection from Chickaniddy Crafts is bold and cute at the same time. It’s an everyday collection that can be used for an abundance of projects!

I really want the stamp set, the geometric shapes and little phrases are all the kinds of things I love to dot around my pages:

Chickaniddy Crafts 365 Collection

There we go, they are the things I’m most looking forward to getting my hands on. That’s quite enough don’t you think?

If you want to see if you missed anything else there’s a good list of links HERE at Paper Vine.

Have you spotted something you’d love to buy? What kinds of collections do you look forward to seeing at this time of year – spring, travel, or everyday themes, or something else?

Bye for now,

Jennifer x

Scrapbook Layouts

SJ Crafts May Challenge – Bingo!

Hello everyone, it’s time for the May SJ Crafts Challenge!

Just in time for the weekend and (Inter)National Scrapbooking Day (Saturday May 3rd). Are you going to be getting your craft on? If so you can join in this challenge and be in with the chance to win a prize – you have until the 31st of May to enter!

This time it’s bingo:

SJ Crafts May Challenge

Select 3 boxes from the grid in a line (horizontal/vertical/diagonal) and include the items or technique in those 3 boxes on your project!

I chose the diagonal line from top left down to bottom right: I used Mist, a Metal Embellishment, and a Knot…

Stay Little Trouble Maker Boy:

Stay Little by Jennifer Grace

This page is all about my son’s obsession with keys, and how he really wanted to unlock my sister’s car and drive it!

I splattered Heidi Swapp’s Navy Color Shine Mist on the background, which is a sheet of  Crate Paper Boys Rule ‘Zap’ Paper, with some ‘arrows’ cut from the ‘Top Score’ Paper stuck on top. I also doodled around the page border to create some fake stitching / road tracks!

My main metal embellishment is an old key, which also has a knot of baker’s twine tied on it, though there’s a knot in some string under the title too:

Stay Little by Jennifer Grace

The title uses bits from the Boys Rule Ephemera Pack, there are also some Boys Rule Wood Embellishments around the page too.

I added a couple more metal embellishments – two metal rimmed brads:

Stay Little by Jennifer Grace

With a scattering of Studio Calico Essentials Cork Stars and Gold Enamel Dots spread around for good measure.

Are you going to take on the challenge? It was a fun way to include something on my page that I wouldn’t usually reach for – I liked rummaging through my stash for some metal, and wondering what I could tie knots in!

Don’t forget to check out the Challenge Post at SJ Crafts to see what the rest of the team chose, and how their projects turned out.

Have a great weekend,

Jennifer x

Scrapbook Layouts

SJ Crafts April Challenge – A Mood Board For Ideas!

Hello everyone! I don’t know what season you are experiencing wherever you are in the world, but here spring is in full swing, with flowers blooming and warmer days making me look forward to the summer!

So this Mood Board I created for the SJ Crafts April Challenge feels especially inspiring to me, though I’m sure you can get ideas from it not matter what weather you’re having…

April Challenge Mood Board:

SJ Crafts April Challenge Mood Board

You can take ideas from this however you choose, for example:

Use the colours – Yellow, Green, Peach, White, Cork/Kraft
Use the quote ‘Look How They Grow’
Make a page about flowers or plants
Use some of the elements, eg. feathers and stars on your page
Use the composition somehow (eg. two lines along the base of your project)
Or anything else you get from the mood board!
.
For my sample layout I mainly chose to use the colours of lime green and yellow, with some cork elements (including some American Crafts DIY Shop Cork Alphas and Arrows), but I swapped out the peach for a bolder orange because I wanted to use some Amy Tangerine Plus One items!
.
Treasure Hunt:

Treasure Hunt layout by Jennifer Grace

I love this combination of colours, it makes me feel happy and lively just to look at them!

The background paper with the circles on is actually from Crate Paper’s Boys Rule collection, it’s called ‘Race Track’ – I bought two sheets of this paper because I loved the front and back! I sprinkled some drops of gold mist on this side to break up the circles a bit.

The page is about a ‘treasure hunt’ walk my daughter and I went for last year – she designed the map and said we had to look for jewels!  The journaling reads:

‘I took you for an adventure one hot day, we left little brother with Rosie so we could explore properly. You drew a map for us and said we were looking for jewels and a castle. 

We hid from pretend dragons, collected jewels that were really pebbles, and the bridge by the quay was a castle. The alcoves were the king and queen’s thrones! I {heart} adventures with you!’

I also took inspration from the mood board by sticking a couple of elements (cut from the Plus One 6×6 Pad) down with washi tape, and by using star embellishments, particularly some gold and woodgrain stars from the Studio Calico Essentials range:

Treasure Hunt layout by Jennifer Grace

I added a couple of feathers like those on the mood board, though I coloured a white feather with Heidi Swapp’s Coral Color Shine Spritz first, then stitched them onto the layout:

Treasure Hunt layout by Jennifer Grace

Finally some Plus One Puffy Stickers and Accent Stickers, plus some Studio Calico Woodgrain and Gold Enamel Dots, are sprinkled around the page for my usual touch of scattering!

What do you think about the way I used the mood board? What inspiration can you take from it? Check out the Challenge Post at SJ Crafts to see what ideas the other Design Team members found on the mood board and the samples they made! Plus you can enter your own project to have a chance to win a small spring prize!

Have a great day!

Jennifer x

DIY Gifts

Winter Trinkets Box (A PaperHaus Project)

Hi! This is a project I originally made for the PaperHaus Winter Issue 2013 (page 56-57). It’s a place to keep all my special ‘winter only’ jewellery, like bracelets with jingly snowflakes…

Winter Trinket Box:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace

Step One: Start with a wooden box (4¼” square by 2¼” deep):

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Two: Use Gesso to whitewash the box (make sure you don’t paint the lid closed!):

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Three: Use an old credit card to spread modelling paste through a stencil/mask onto two corners of the top of the box. Lift off the stencil and wipe off any excess modelling paste at the box edges:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Four: Tip glitter onto the modelling paste (straight away – don’t let it dry), and pat it lightly with a fingertip to make sure it’s stuck. Shake off the excess glitter and leave it to dry:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Five: Repeat steps three and four around the sides of the box, wiping off the stencil between each application:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Six: Cut six thin slivers of paper (approx ⅛” wide by 6″ tall):

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Seven: Curl the paper slivers around the handle of a paintbrush:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Eight: Adhere them to the top of the box using hot glue or other strong adhesive. Cut the paper curls shorter if required:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Nine: Cut two 4″ long pieces of ½” wide ribbon, fold each end in towards the middle and glue into place to make two bows:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Ten: Adhere one bow into the centre of the paper curls, and another to the front of the lid:

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Eleven: Whitewash the inside of the box with Gesso, and line the base and the lid of the box with the same papers you used for the paper curls (adhering with a glue stick):

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace Creates

Step Twelve: Finish the outside of the box by adhering a few chipboard elements with hot glue. Fill with your winter trinkets!

Winter Trinkets Box by Jennifer Grace

Do you have a special space to store certain jewellery? If you want to see more step-by-step photos of this project, check out the PaperHaus Magazine, it’s free!

P.S. Don’t forget my giveaway HERE!

Bye for now, Jennifer x

Cardmaking

Six Cards for December – Scraplifting Myself!

Hello, how is December going for you? Have you sent out all your Christmas cards yet? I haven’t!

SJ Crafts ‘Six on the 6th’ post reminded me to hurry up and write and address my cards. This is the last month to link up to the blog series, then someone will win a pizza box full of stash! If you want to join in then the rules have been relaxed a little this month – you can link up even if you only have a card or two to share, or maybe a set of handmade tags!

When I was sorting through my cards to choose who would which I realised I was a little short – I needed 6 more cards! So to speed this up I ‘scraplifted’ myself, choosing 6 of my favourite styles to emulate. Here are the new cards…

Season’s Greetings:

Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

This one was based on my ‘Pile It Up’ Cards, with lots of embellies stacked in the middle of the card.

Merry Christmas (Hearts):

Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

This card is loosely based on the ‘Merry Merry Christmas Son’ card on my Cards with Vintage Images blog post. I got the inspiration from it to use glitter tape near the base, and to use a mix of flat stickers, pearl pen dots, and gems. I used red hearts on this one because it’s for my husband. I normally put ‘husband’ on the front of his cards, but I decided I might keep this one for decoration next Christmas, so I added the hearts instead!

Merry Everything:

Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

This card is based on one I had published in the PaperHaus Winter Issue (on page 98). On that card I’d used a big icon from the Glitz Hello December collection as the focal point for the card, so I did that again here, and also used papers from the 6×6 Paper Pad piled up as the background, and overlapped a Giant Rhinestone onto a shape with a sentiment on. But instead of ribbon along the bottom I used some washi tape for the ‘road’!

Be Merry:

 Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

This one uses the Crate Paper Bundled Up Collection and Studio Calico Tiny Stars again just like the cards it was scraplifted from HERE.

Merry Christmas (Mantelpiece):

Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

This card was based on my Christmas Cards – One The Mantelpiece, except this time I wanted to use a bigger sentiment, which meant there was less space for things on the mantelpiece. I ‘hung’ the stocking and the decoration down from the mantelpiece instead!

Merry Merry Christmas:

Christmas Card by Jennifer Grace

I ended up making two of these, so now I have a spare card in case I’ve forgotten anyone! These two are based on my Clean and Simple Christmas Cards, though I changed the colours up a bit to use red and aqua with gold, which I think looks great!

So there we go, if you need a quick idea for another Christmas card, or for a scrapbook page or maybe a page in a December mini-book, then try looking back at something you’ve finished recently to see what ideas you can take from it!

I hope you’re having a happy December, Jennifer x

P.S. SJ Crafts is having a Design Team Call (UK residents only), check it out HERE if you’re interested! Sarah is a lovely lady to work for, I’m having so much fun on the team!