Saturday, January 16, 2010

Redhead Review: Scrapbooker's Creativity Kit

I am woefully behind on my scrapbooking. I have scrapbooker's block more often than I get writer's block....which is not infrequent. When I saw this great kit by Claudine Hellmuth with such an inticing cover, I just had to have it.

When I get stuck on a writing project, I often use prompts to get my creative juices going so it seemed logical that this approach would work with other creative endeavours. I love the way Claudine start out the book - "Take your thoughts on a walk".

In the introduction to the kit, Hellmuth tells the reader that she has been using word prompts for over 14 years to get herself in the creative mood. This kit takes all the angst out of prompts by making them completely random. It contains two decks of cards - one has word prompts (2 per card face) and the other is made up of color tiles.

To get going, shuffle the decks and take one card from the prompts deck and two from the color cards. Then, you use these prompts as the basis to create your page or project. You can use as much or as little of the two colors as you want, but now you have somewhere to start! The same thing goes for the word prompts - the words are meant to get you going not box you in.

Claudine stresses that there are no rules! I like it already - I am so bad with rules. The instruction book is filled with great designs inspired by the prompts. To show the variety you can achieve using this method, there are several sample layouts for each set of prompts demonstrated.

As you read through the blurbs produced by the designers, you can really see how the prompts jumpstarted not only ideas but also helped in the selection of embellishments to go along with the themes. Using the prompt "twist", Rhonna Farrer, one of the designers featured in the booklet, created twisted fabric embellishments and used a pen to twist doodles and swirls for her layout.

I pulled out the word "decade" and magenta and light blue for my two colors.

Now, this color scheme is really out of my comfort zone but I will give it a try. I rifled through my stash and came up with some papers that were a close fit.

Thinking of a theme to go with decade was a no-brainer as my daughter has just reached her first double-digit birthday. I decided to make a page commemorating a decade of her pretty smiles.

I gathered up some corresponding embellishments, some Prima flowers and some stick-on letters.

I had a fabulous idea to add white flourishes onto the paper for some dramatic contrast, but I grabbed the clear embossing powder instead of the white. Luckily, the technique focus for this month was stuck in my head - resist - and I quickly applied some lovely matching ink and then ironed off my embossing powder to leave a subtle pattern on the corner of the page...very subtle as you cannot see it in the photo very well.

Next, I picked out my pictures. I decided on 5 instead of 10 as that seemed way too crowded to me. I was fiddling with the color on them as some were scanned from before my digital photography days, when I came upon the ulitmate solution - just make the pictures the same colors as my color scheme. It was easy to accomplish this in Photoshop. I changed the original picture to a grayscale and then returned it to CMYK state. I adjusted the color balance until I approximated my paper colors. I then printed them out on 24 lb bright white paper.

I did a little overstamping on my newly created pictures all scaled to my liking and easy to alter in a guilt-free manner as I had not used the originals. I added her age at the time of the photo to each one in a corresponding ink and added a flourish. I also stamped some flourishes onto the blue paper but it is harder to see.

Voila! Completed scrapbook page with a theme and a color scheme I never would have thought of on my own in a zillion years.

Decade of Delight
Stamps: flourish (unknown - acrylic I have had forever); numbers (My Sentiments Exactly)
Paper: Vale (7 Gypsies); Dulce from Antique Boutique line/Amber MacDonald (A to Z Essentials); blocks (Creative Memories)
Cardstock: Burgundy Cover (Paper Store)
Ink: Raspberry Fizz (PaperTrey); Tempting Turquoise (Stampin Up); Versamark
Embellishments: 6 paper flowers (Prima); 3 blue brads (American Crafts); stick-on letters from Blush line (BasicGrey)

I really liked using the Scrapbooker's Creativity Kit to focus my ideas. It also helped me break out of my old habits and color schemes. With a fresh eye, I was able to group my photos in more interesting ways rather than the tried and true cronilogical format.


  1. What A great idea book, really gives your a jump start to creating, Sounds like a fun way to stretch your imagination. Maybe you should do a challenge for the readers pulling from the cards!
    Your page came out beautifully and Love how it shows her through the years!

  2. Wow,that's gorgeous & a great idea!!!
    Luv the colour combo & your own ideas worked great,well done!!! :o)x

  3. What a cool book. I am definely adding it to my wishlist. The page you made from your inspiration was pretty inspiring too.

  4. Brilliant kit...I want one of those LOL I too am woefully behind on my Scrapbooking...I have three holidays worth of pics, four Christmas's and loads of childhood pics that need LO' day I will get round to it LOL Loving the idea of using word prompts..and this is something I often do as a start to a project..find a word or a phrase and work around it :O)) Thanks for sharing your FAB art hun x

  5. This page is so beautiful, as is the subject! :) The prompts are a wonderful idea, and I think you also hit on another key thing... getting away from the chronological rut... SO hard for me! This post is very inspiring... I need to go scrapbook some more!

  6. What a stunning page! I love how you altered the photos - they're awesome.

  7. This is impressive! I'm a CM consultant and really appreciate the idea of tinting the photos to match the layout; and the kit is going on my "highly recommended" list. One of the comments most often heard is, "I don't know where to start!" This kit will be my response :D
    Thank you for the inspiration; the page is truly beautiful!

  8. What a clever kit. Love your layout.

  9. I had not heard of this but I will definitely want to get one. I love the idea of thinking out of the box. Your page is amazing.

  10. Wow! Just found this at my ACMoore today and snapped it up with my 50% off coupon!!!!!!


Thanks for your wonderful words!

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