Category Archives: Big Picture Scrapbooking Classes

19 | surprises, gifts, and multi-tasking as ever…


This morning the girls woke up to find unadorned wrapped gifts, holiday shirts, chocolates, and even the Christmas dog “Jingles” + book (which is AWESOME, by the way) they had been dreaming of on the stairs. Who could be responsible? Credit was given to Buddy (their elf on the shelf) who was hanging from the garland overseeing it all.

This afternoon I was working on videos for my new BPC class, and I found out that my Scrapbook Update article (link) about the new 2012 Hero Arts stamps + their debut parties was up.

how are these things in any way related?

I multi-tasked! I created a tag with two of my new (beloved) Hero Arts stamps while talking about my Big Picture class and made it a tag for one of Elizabeth’s gifts that clearly needed something fancy.

I LOVE the green tulle I purchased (craft store, wedding aisle) on a whim. I’ve been using it tons. I also use cardstock as a base ‘strip’ around my packages a lot lately too.

If you want to read more about my experience with the Hero Arts party and see all my favorite picks then check this out:

The two stamps I used on this tag are the leaf & flower background (link to and the four hearts (link to set.

If you’d like to see some of my process on this tag, and hear about the A-Z library that is 26 videos, available on day 1, and just one part of my new Big Picture class (registration/info page link)- check out this video I made this afternoon:

Have an idea for something you’d like clarified, talked about, or ‘sneak peeked’ about my class? Let me know! I hope you’re finding some crafty happiness somewhere in the midst of the crazy that can be December. I need to go journal today’s elf-capades and edit videos for Field Guide too…




Yes, I went all caps on my title. I pitched this class back in April/May, talked to Stacy about it in June, and have been working on it since then. Will be working on it still through the time it starts. What is it?

The info is here: 

I will be posting more about it, and I’m happy to answer questions about content, class, etc…

One of the best parts? Big Picture let me give everyone a break off the usual $99 price a class of this size would be. That’s right – no code needed it’s just $89 for 12 weeks, more than 50 videos, more than a dozen handouts, more than 40 new projects (that’s my CONSERVATIVE figures! it’ll be even more!!) and of course all the hands-on instruction you’re used to from me and my classes.

I’d love you to check it out, let me know what you think, and let me know what kind of “insider peeks” you’d like to see me post here! I’m *SO* excited to finally be sharing about this class, and that registration is also open now!!


multi-task holiday season crafting [BPC blog hop]


Season’s greetings!

It’s the holiday season, and that means days are short, to-do lists are long, and time is precious. The one pitfall I try very hard to avoid is making the mistake of not making time to be creative.

Today I am participating in the Big Picture 12 days of Christmas instructor blog hop! As a multi-tasking woman this time of year I am combining my contribution with a “25 days of holiday crafting” post with a real gift I needed to wrap up this afternoon.

See how that works? Not only can you multi-task by crafting in especially useful ways, but I find that I feel better because I’m crafting – even if it is small projects and short amounts of time. Multi-tasking is my absolute favorite thing to do during December! It’s a holiday tradition really, and I love the challenge.

Today I am going to share with you a how-to on this gift card holder – gift cards are a favorite thing of mine to give, but I like to take 5-10minutes and dress them up a bit. That is truly all it takes! It gives me the chance to play with crafty things AND fancy-fy a gift for someone.

First, you need an idea. I took a little Starbucks gift card holder and covered the front with white cardstock. Because COME ON. I’m not giving someone a gift card that SAYS where the gift card is from right on the front!

To get some color on it I just dotted distress stain onto my craft mat, then misted my gift card holder with water and rubbed it around…

Bam! As you can see it turns out there was a hidden pattern on the sides – cool! This idea is one I borrowed from Tim Holtz – he’s been doing this for backgrounds on his tags this week. scrap-lifting, another great time saver!

I misted with my green patina perfect pearls mist, then closed it up (gift card inside), wrapped with some green tulle, added a charm…

then I stamped some holly leaves + my one and only Christmas sentiment stamp (love it!), edged with gold paint…

Then my deer seemed too silver, so I dabbed some (caramel) alcohol ink onto him and it’s ready to go!  I timed myself with this project – it took 7 minutes start to finish and I am SO much happier with giving away this Starbucks gift card than if I had just handed it over plain.


If you’re short on time this holiday season, consider multi-tasking so that you can feel that you are accomplishing things while also getting to be creative. Looking for more ideas? Please do continue along the hop! The next blog hop stop is Karen Grunberg 

Want to know more about the Big Picture Class “12 days of Christmas” that I’m a part of? Head on over to the class registration page and check it out. It’s a great way to get inspiration for a dozen scrapbook pages from a dozen BPC instructors. I’m so happy to be a part of it – and see what the other instructors have come up with too!

Here is a full listing of the instructors participating in today’s blog hop:

Nic Howard
Georgana Hall
Stacy Julian
Tami Morrison 
Wendy Smedley 
Lisa Day
Kelly Purkey
Elizabeth Dillow
Karen Grunberg

a first peek…


I have another Disney post 1/2 done – but this has been a wild weekend! I will have to finish that page in the next day or two. How was my weekend? FABULOUS!

First I had an AMAZING time down at in Elk Grove, CA teaching and having a blast getting fingers messy and creatively just got such a  re-charge. LOVED it. I even got to meet THE WANDA GUESS. Yeah, as in that awesome cardmaking blogger who blows my mind. I want to create with her and have her magic rub off on me. I made a card today on my own – it wasn’t magic. I guess I need to spend more time in her presence!!! Wanda was awesome, so sweet, and seriously I just wanted to pick her brilliant crafty mind all day. I LOVE WANDA!!! [in a totally crafty way. not in a creepy way]

Then lots of family time, and oh yeah. DEADLINE TIME. I’m talking about my BPC class. The one that I’ve been working on all fall (and a bit of summer too)… the one that’s gonna be a 12 week class starting in early February 2012. The class that I *finally* named with a lot of help and feedback from some awesome people. it has been “that 12 week 2012” class for MONTHS now. I’m not gonna tell you its name just yet… but would you like a first peek?

That peek is just a simple little tag… that has become my favorite project featuring my new favorite stamp that i didn’t know I owned. (whoops) I will tell you this too: By the time I’m done with this class it will have over 50 videos in addition to the usual hand outs and active classroom environment you’re used to from me. I will also tell you that this class is not just my biggest class – it’s my most technique focused one ever. We get really deep into specific products, techniques, approaches, and so much more… I’m really excited. Ok FINE! you’ve twisted my arm here is a second peek too…

Right now I’m building the early weeks of class and I’m just ITCHING to break out the crazy funky mixed media collage work and wild layouts… but it’s not time for that just yet. That comes later in class. Right at the moment I’m double checking my handouts and uploading like crazy so that Brandi (aka AWESOME BPC EDITOR!!) can edit my weirdness into the greatness that is any BPC class.

I’d better get back to photo editing and double checking all my week 1 & 2 materials…

in the meantime – happy crafting!!!

[if you get any weird emails or energetic voice mails from me I fully blame the fact that I’m hopped up on Earl Grey tea at the moment]

Checking in from Double Take


My Big Picture On-line class Double Take is off to a fantastic start! (check out the registration page for info) I am loving the great conversation on the message board as well as seeing how students are taking the sketches and making them work with their own photos + stories. Today I thought it would be fun to share a few layouts that students have already shared in our gallery!

Here’s a page by Deb:

This one was made by Emily:

Here is a layout from Crystal:

and finally here is a page by Jean:

Such fun to see everyone’s take on the 4 sketches this week, and seeing what people are scrapping. We have a great mix of digi and paper scrapbookers, and it’s such fun – I know it’s going to be a GREAT four weeks!!

Registration closes this Wednesday night – so come sign up if you’re wanting to join in!

NEW double page layout in honor of class!


In honor of my class starting today at Big Picture, here’s a double page layout made just this morning, and in under an hour. YES! it can be done!! Double pagers can be fun, embellishment filled, and quick if you want them to be. They can be anything a single pager can be!! Here’s the new page from this morning:

*LOVE* the Happy Days collection from Echo Park Paper that I used here. I’ll admit… at first I thought “meh”… that was until it showed up at my house after CHA. Once I opened up that paper pack I fell in LOVE!! I created this layout THIS MORNING – it’s a favorite formula of mine – just scrap straight across the page. All my photos are 4×6, the little ones at bottom are 2×2 Hipstamatic prints from my iPhone.

Such a happy playful line – and photos I had to work with!

Here’s a huge tip: only have single sheets of patterns you want to use on a double page layout? Save your patterned paper! Use a cardstock base (most of it gets covered anyhow!) and then you can make the most of the single-sheets of paper in a paper pack. For this layout I used stickers and the patterned paper I used is just 1 1/2 x 12 (ads/print was white I used stain to make it yellow) and 1/2 x 12 (red dots over that). EASY!

The sticker elements, the papers… independantly or together I really like how they work. Yep, I’m a big fan of this Happy Days line!


Love double page layouts? Join us!! My new Big Picture on-line class started today – registration is still open!! Check it out here:

Are you in class? How are you liking it? What’s your favorite thing this week? Do share!!

I’ll be back (as Arnold would say) with more soon…

some peeks at Double Take…


I was looking over the PDF files for Double Take (my new class with Nic Howard), and wow. Ok, so I always LOVE seeing my raw materials turned into the formatted/edited look of the Big Picture files and such… but this time was DOUBLE as cool because I got to see more images of all Nic’s layouts, read her notes, and wow… I hope you’re joining us for class because this is going to be 32 layouts worth of fun…

Above is the opening page of our week #1 PDF file. Inside each week’s handout you’ll find 4 sketches, 8 layouts (2 for each sketch), Q&A about common double page questions, tips, hints, notes on how we utilized the other person’s sketch, and more. I REALLY love this class format. Seeing how Nic used my sketches is so inspiring – seeing how she made them her own, what twists she added – love it.

I also loved putting my mark on Nic’s sketches! Above is a peek at one of my layouts from class based on a Nic sketch. She tends to have bigger journaling blocks + more layers of paper than me. Yet with each sketch I made sure to keep it “me” and put my own twist on them. So fun. The layout above you can see I broke my journaling up into sentences (vs one big block) that lets it keep the same look but in my own way.

Here’s more peeks! This is another layout based on a Nic sketch. This one took me forever – I had major brain block. But I worked through it (and I share my “how” in class!) and I made some super fun layered embellishments and such for this page. It’s one of my favorites of the whole class!! Especially the colors. Kraft + orange + blue. LOVING that combo!

To read more about class + register check it all out here:

I hope to see you in class! if you have questions or anything feel free to ask here or email me.

BIG Summer fun [and a give-away!]


I believe this is the fourth summer that I’ve been asked to participate with Big Picture’s annual summer FREE class that they offer. I’m excited – this is another super fun idea and I can’t wait to see it in action.

Big Idea Festival 2011
Words to Live By

You are invited to a FREE festival packed full of big ideas at Big Picture Classes this August! Join us for 12 fun-filled days starting Monday August 15, featuring 12 of our talented instructors. Each instructor will be giving you a word of the day, which we hope will inspire you, along with a downloadable template (in both printable and digital format) so that you can create a mini layout about that day’s word and how you applied it in your life. Finally, each teacher will leave you with an inspirational video message and a preview of the page they created with their word.

The great part? You don’t HAVE to use the template or do things the way anyone else did. You can just have fun with it and play. Use your stash, just take a peek and be inspired – whatever! It’s free and it’s just for you. LOVE that BPC does this every year.

What’s even better? They’ve told me I can give away one of the exclusive kits here on my blog! The kit that they’ve done up is something just for fun – in no way is it required to join in the class fun. But look at those lovely goodies!!

link to info/to buy a kit can be found here:

*** CONGRATULATING Erin glee! She won the drawing ******

Announcing: DOUBLE TAKE


Today I’m excited to announce my next Big Picture class. Registration opens in two weeks (July 28) and today I just want to take a minute to tell you a little bit about it and share the BIG secret we’ve been keeping.

Did I say WE?

Yes that’s right… I am not going it alone this time around. I’m co-teaching this class with one of my long time favorite scrapbookers. The one and only Nic Howard. We’re joining forces and I think you’re going to love the result of having not one, but TWO seasoned instructors on this class. It’s been a long time in the making – and I’ve loved every minute of preparing the materials with Nic.

What is the class?

Each week there will be four double-page layout sketches AND a new layout from both me and Nic for each sketch. That’s eight new layouts every week. AND? Videos, helpful tips and frequent questions answered, an active message board, a chat with each one of us…

oh yes, it’s DOUBLE the fun!!!

This class starts September 22 – and I hope you’ll be joining us!! I will post again about this in two weeks with a bit more info, plus a link to the registration page. We’ve been working hard and I’m excited to share this with you…

So, what do you think?!