Sunday, 20 April 2014

Divided loyalties

Good grief the Spring is marching on isn't it?! One minute we were drowning in rain filled fields and overflowing rivers and the next minute the garden centres are sunny and crowded and we are awash with hayfever and the smell of cut grass.  It is nearly time for the children to go back to school after the Easter break and we've been away to Wales and I've been on a craft retreat too.  Of course now the house looks like a bombsite and there is a pile of laundry bigger than my mother so the house looks a far cry from the tidy pictures on the estate agent's website!  

The good news is that we have found a house but the bad news is that they can't find anything yet. So in the meantime I will cherish the space in my current craft room and try not to buy anything else to go in it!  It is very hard though when you come across wonderful collections like Homespun by Simple Stories.  I was immediately drawn to the variety of primary colours and sweet designs however, like many companies and collections these days, Homespun is designed with pocket pages in mind.  Now, I love using pocket pages for big events like holidays and Christmas but I don't want to use them for the every day stuff really.  Does that mean that we have to miss out on such collections or can we be a bit creative and use them for our standard pages too?  Let's see shall we?  

The Simple Stories divided pages come in a variety of styles so the collections are not just 3x4 and 4x6 journalling style cards.  I wanted to see exactly what I had to work with so I trimmed all the cut apart sheets in to their various pieces.  I went through and selected the ones I wanted to use as they were and kept these in a separate pile.  Any others were fair game for being used in other ways and this meant that I could fussy cut them, use them for layering, punch shapes from them, etc.  


One of the first pieces that really grabbed my attention was this 6x12 woodgrain section.  The wording and design on the bottom make a great title and so another option would have been to use just that portion.  I love the whole piece though and I think it makes a natural home for the striking photograph.  I did a little photo shoot of my niece and her little boy so most of the layouts from that day probably won't have much in the way of journalling other than perhaps the first few.  
I really liked the eclectic bunting near the title so I used the matching design from the sticker sheet on pop dots for texture and interest.
My next use of one of the pieces was to make a photo mat.  I cut down the photo slightly to make it fit onto the standard 4x6 card but I wanted a second mat too.  Here's where you need to get a bit creative! I really liked the pattern on the card but I knew I wouldn't use the sentiment so I could cut an L shape to expand the parameters a bit.
I'm no good at sewing so this is the nearest I get to patchwork!  I added a punched shape, a sticker from the sheet and a heart from the chipboard sheet on one corner
To cover the other corner I used the same punched shape, some banners cut from the branding strips and one of the beautiful brads from the same range.

There are going to be quite a few layouts from this little photo shoot so I like to mix things up a bit by using some A4 pages too - they fit just as well as any other page protector in my American Crafts D Ring albums.  For this layout I decided to use the 3x4 cards to make a grid of the photo, a journalling block and then 2 for decoration.
 I used a piece of red A4 card and cut out the middle to use as a mat for the whole grid to lift it from the beautiful floral paper.  The designs on some of the cards are so pretty that you really don't need to add much to them.  Here I've just extended the design a bit with a chipboard heart and a button tied with baker's twine.
I drew the design together by using another button diagonally opposite and used the stickers from the alpha sheet for the little title and mini tag.  Branding strips and thin off-cuts ground the design and then I finished off with some fun bobble trim.
So far then we've used a 6x12 piece as it is, used branding strips and off cuts and punched shapes from a "spare" card for embellishments, made a grid from 3x4 cards, used one as a journalling card, used one piece for a title, used another "spare" card as a photo mat.

But if you are still undecided about using divided collections on standard page then I still have 2 more posts to show you lots of other ideas too!

Bye for now


  1. Loved your post LJ. Hope you make headway with all that washing. The downside to having a good week x

  2. great pages I love using all the PL stuff on my layouts

  3. Great pages. I hope your house moving chain progresses quickly x

  4. Lovely pages. Good luck with the house situation - it must be hard to wait.


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