my scrap space // a little tour

hello again!

the beginning of the year brought so many things that are making me happy right now:
>>> new supplies
>>> a desire to purge some old/unused items
>>> a continued love for project life

organizing and making do with what i have has always been a priority in my life.
if i need something, my first thought is “can i make it myself?” or “do i have something that i could make work instead of buying it?”
most of the time, the answer is yes. and in the case of my scrap desk, it’s a hodge podge of well loved items that have had many other functions.

for part one of a series of videos i’m making, i take you through a general tour around my desk. i’m mainly focusing on supplies and how i have made storage solutions from items i already own. scrapbooking and documenting life does not have to be an expensive hobby. you don’t really need the latest or greatest storage solution or gadget or dispenser. for example, one item i don’t mention in the video is my washi tape. (honestly, i ran out of time and didn’t want the video over 10 minutes so i’ll touch on it next time) i store them on a small ikea shelf that i have had for years. i could have bought trays and baskets and such, but i used what i had and it works for me. they are on display so i can see them and they are up and out of the way.
in a small space, storage is key. but as a visual person, if i don’t see it, i don’t use it.

the video below is my first walk through video and it was kinda fun to make! i talk through what’s on my desk and hopefully it doesn’t bore you into hitting the pause button. and please be kind as i also had to edit it using imovie for the first time ever and it’s not as clean as i had hoped for. with a husband as a video editor, my standard are high, so next time i’ll be doing things a bit differently.

but until then, welcome to my scrap space!

thanks for watching, i sure hope you found something that has inspired you! 🙂


project life update // weeks 17+18+19+20


hi again! what’s this? two project life updates in one week? that’s right, i just had too much to share!

here’s 4 more weeks:

week 17 // full spreadIMG_263852
week 17 // left side


week 17 // right side

week 18 // full spread


week 18 // left side
IMG_265266 IMG_265367 IMG_265468 IMG_265569 IMG_265771 IMG_265670
week 18 // right side
IMG_265872 IMG_265973 IMG_266074 IMG_266175 IMG_266276 IMG_266377 IMG_266478

week 19 // full spreadIMG_266579

week 19 // left side


week 19 // right sideIMG_267387IMG_267488IMG_267589IMG_267690IMG_267791IMG_267892IMG_267993

week 20 // full spreadIMG_268094

week 20 // left sideIMG_268195IMG_268296IMG_268397IMG_268498IMG_268599IMG_2686100IMG_2687101

week 20 // right side

as i type this, i have officially finished week 22. looking forward to printing june and july photos this week. i have so much fun product and would love to get through summer before we get into december.

are you behind? up to date? weigh in on what week you’re on in your project life.


christmas embroidery // a craft + template

when you think of christmas songs, which is your favorite?
mine? hands down, baby it’s cold outside by dean martin

i realize it doesn’t have anything to do with christmas, but it has everything to do with winter weather and a time gone by when people had class and morals with regard to relationships. the back and forth conversation is just fun and amusing.

obviously the title has been used a million times but it doesn’t lose it’s luster for me. i knew i wanted to display the sentiment in the house for this holiday.

with the cooler weather nearing, the thoughts of christmas are heavy. we’ve had a long and warm summer and i’m ready for some cold outside. embroidery came to mind and this project began to take shape.

christmas stitches

i designed the template on my iPad, using the rhonna farrer photo app. i saved it and then printed it the size i wanted by inserting the picture into word and enlarging it. i used the cluster of stars only because i liked the placement, even though i ended up stitching little asterisks to look for like snow. feel free to save the photo for yourself and make your very own!


this was my first time stitching on black fabric. i still used the same technique as i normally do but had to use a white pen to trace onto the fabric. (if you’re new to embroidery, i made a tutorial a while back).

since my colors this year are black/white/gold/red, i opted for an easy two color design. at this point, the white is done and i’m ready for stitches

the gold is done, i’m adding little stars for stitches

i used a small dowel and black embroidery floss to hang it. christmas stitches

because i was having so much fun, i also stitched another one. i found this printable on pinterest.

christmas stitches

christmas stitches

thanks for reading!

until the next time we chat, have a great week!


weekend pinterest projects


this weekend held so much potential, on monday.
on tuesday, it was a distant dream.
wednesday began my excitement for a friends’ kiddo’s birthday party at the pool and a sunday full of football.
then thursday showed up and brought swollen glands, a scratchy throat and severe sinus pressure. curse you, thursday.
friday didn’t make it go away. no amount of doughnut consumption could take away the sniffles or the sneezes or the aches. getting through work was rough but when i made it home, the couch and my fleece packers blanket beckoned me into their clutches. with a box of tissue, vapo-rub and pre-season football on tv, i hardly moved. dreading a wasted saturday on the couch, i popped a couple tylenol in hopes of a morning of recovery.

and here we are at saturday. i woke up refreshed, but with sinus pain and pressure that makes my face feel like it could explode and a back ache. since my brain says “it’s the weekend, let’s make something!”, i power up the iPad and head straight for pinterest. (specifically my projects to do board).

since i won’t be gracing any craft store with my presence, or my money, i’m looking for projects that use stuff i already have (see repurposing) and that takes minimal effort (see sick and lazy).

and of course, i found a few perfect projects:

// felt chevron hair clips by nattybratty on etsy. looks like they’re sold out, but i’m gonna make them for myself anyways.


// star-stamped tee shirt found on

i don’t have a large star stamp but i do have some cute arrows and letters i could use to make a cute pattern. looking forward to making something fun.


// back to school interviews with the boys by

this will be a great addition to project life and i just might have the boys write them in themselves.


// wooden pepsi sign found on pinterest

no one FREAK OUT! this is for gibson, the pepsi lover. i have some spare wood left over from this project, and i figured gibson would love to hang this in his room.


so that’s my plan, man. if i end up getting none of these completed, i’m okay with that. just can’t sit around here doin’ nothing all weekend. although marshall’s room needs to be cleaned and gibson needs to get prepped for school. i plan to take it easy for the next couple days.

andrea_signature copy

diy painted sign // a craft

when i first moved in to our new house, i knew i would need to cover up the old brass fireplace cover.

but the solution wasn’t exactly clear.

i toyed with a few ideas and searched pinterest until i decided that a large painted sign would be the simplest and cheapest way to go. and it turned out to be one of my favorite things to look at.


i started by measuring the width and height of the fireplace cover. i added 2 inches to each side and 2 inches to the top for my total dimensions. the plan was for it to just lean against the cover.

at lowes, i had them cut this size from a 4×4 piece of mdf. i didn’t need a fancy piece of wood and this one cost $12. once they cut the two sides off, i was left with 2 other pieces to use for another project….score!!!

i measured how tall i wanted the letters and which fonts i wanted. i printed the letters using MS word to make it easy. watched some tv while i cut each letter out by hand.


after 2 coats of white spray paint, i lightly glued the letters down. measuring and adjusting as i went.


2 coats of red spray paint and some dry time later….


…we were able to start peeling the letters off.


i love that some parts didn’t come off and that other letters don’t have a super clean edge.


it is easily my new favorite piece. 🙂

happy crafting!

andrea_signature copy

my craft space // an update


if you recall the bare bones workstation i created in our new house, you’ll notice a simple design, free of junk and unnecessary clutter.


being fond of the simple kind of life in this space, i was looking to add a bit more in the way of organization and color.

enter // phase 2


after spending a significant chunk of time in this space a couple weeks ago (see: reason why), i realized some flaws in my setup.

number one // surface space was lacking

my trays of paper and supplies were taking up so much desk space that after adding the paper cutter, little trash bin and my phone and water, i barely had room for a single page to work on.


so i found a larger box in my garage (from our local big box store), some empty shoe boxes and reorganized how i stored my 4×6, 3×4 and smaller scraps.


instead of making sections myself like i did here, i used some smaller boxes and containers that were being used elsewhere. two of these are the base and lid from one of my first project life kits.

this lid holds my 4×6 inserts perfectly.


the bottom of that box holds two rows of 3×4 inserts which makes looking through them so much easier.


these other boxes i found at target’s dollar spot. they are perfect for the little scraps and small paper embellishments.


number two // smaller accessories were hidden and not easy to get to or took up too much space

another supply that commandeers my work surface is my growing collection of tapes.

so what better place than up where i can see them all! thankfully i still have a little ikea shelf that ended up being perfect for these little rolls of colorful goodness.


you’d think this would mean i can’t buy anymore tapes since they go from end to end, but wait!…..there’s room for a second row behind there! boom!



my acrylic stamp collection is also growing. they needed their own home and were in a few different places before. in one tray and on top of a bigger ikea shelf was perfect.


oh look! what’s that under the shelf?


i spray painted mason jar rings and nailed the lids to the underside of the shelf and now, those little half pints store chip boards, buttons and flowers that would be otherwise shoved in a box and never seen or used. hello functionality!



all pens and tools used to commune in the same desktop tray. but i covered a narrow shoebox lid and can keep all the journaling pens horizontal like a good little scrapper but all the other tools get an upright position in a mason jar.





we can’t forget about ribbon, twine and rick-rack. they get to mingle in a larger mason jar and stored in the big box of papers and scraps. now it’s super easy to see what i have and can use them frequently!



i’m using a magazine holder for tall sheets of alpha stickers and another little box for a couple circle punches, extra glue sticks and tools i don’t use too often.


magic can happen in small spaces, all you need is a few jars and empty boxes.


happy scrapping!

andrea_signature copy

weekend pinterest projects

with this kind of weather upon us, there’s not going to be much reason for us to leave the house this weekend.


and since i am all out of pictures to scrap, the plan is to keep busy while the outside world sweats.

// alter a t-shirt by dollars sense and more

// make some shorts by made by roo

// apple art by modern parents messy kids

// be active, inside of course (sorry about the language, but it gets the point across)

// let my kid fly by doodle craft

// get wet by icandy handmade

// paint my nails a bright color like this by supppshell

do you have any weekend projects planned?

andrea_signature copy

our new digs // my closet

seven years.
my clothes spent seven years in a closet the size of a matchbox. a matchbox that i split 75/25 with my dear husband.

but those days are over.

because now, i have a closet that’s about 25% larger and i don’t have to share it. in fact, matt’s closet is the same size and he doesn’t have to compete with skirts or ruffles. lucky him.

but seriously, let’s get back to my closet. it has mirrored doors, did i mention that?

here is the left half…
tops, organized by color. and shoes.


and here is the right half…
the green to blue tops, then dresses, then skirts, then pants. and yes, more shoes. these need to be weeded through. it’s something i just couldn’t do before the move.


a colorful little bunting adds the right funkiness to my accessory area, don’tcha think?


it’s made from fabric scraps and simple sewn together at the top. no hems, no bindings, just raw edges and push pins to hang them up.


a peg board holds earrings, necklaces, bracelets and belts.

two ribbons, attached to the wall at top and bottom, hold my hair clips and fabric flowers.


over the last few years, i have made so much of my own jewelry. but my tastes are changing and i have decided to toss or reuse some of the items i am not wearing anymore. only a select few made the cut and got to remain on the board.

this peg board has been magical. seriously. i need to see my stuff, or it will never get worn. i can easily select the right accessories and they have a permanent home. plus, it’s pretty, and that’s half the battle. 🙂


rings, stud earrings and chunkier bracelets live on my dresser. this is a clear plastic organizer that i bought at target. i think it’s meant for a drawer but it’s perfect for this.





do you struggle with a small space? how do you organize your closet? by sleeve length or by color? i’d love to know!

andrea_signature copy

project life organization // the supplies


since we talked about preparing your photos last week, we can’t just stop there. what are you gonna do with those pretty pictures once you’ve got them organized? get creative, right? well we’ll need some supplies…


last spring, i made a fabulous organizer to house all of my scrap/project life supplies. you can check out how i made it here. go ahead, check it out, i’ll wait.

okay, now that you’re back, here’s how it’s evolved over the year.

// the main stash

i’ve invested in more traditional scrapbook supplies than project life brand stuff. i learned that if i buy a kit, i’m sick of the designs in less than half a year. and since paper companies know so many of their customers are using their stuff for project life, nearly everything can be cut into 3×4 or 4×6. genius.

i have a row row for 3×4 pieces…


and 4×6 stuff. keep in mind that i precut regular 12×12 cardstock as well, not just what the manufacturers design as cutouts.


back there are 6×6 paper pads and in front are odd sized scraps. so perfect for the mini pages that are involved with pl.


what would an organizer be without a mason jar. this little one is perfect for the tiny embellishments that can get lost easily.


on the far right are some smaller sticker pages.


in addition to that box, i also keep a crate-o-paper and a tray for my numerous tools.

let’s check out the deets, shall we?

// the 12×12 stuff

meet my crate-o-paper.


well, technically it’s paper, stickers, large scraps and page protectors.


it’s not “organized” by some people’s standards but because of how often i’m in it and how i know exactly what i have, it’s super easy for me to thumb through the 12×12 sticker pages and 12×12 cardstock.


the front has a few file folders that help to corral the larger sticker sheets and smaller scraps and embellishments.


i used to organize by color but with all the different patterns and color combos, that became more of a chore to decide which color category it belonged in.


so i just keep the cardstock toward the back and the sticker/letter/cutout sheets up front.


// the letter stickers

the larger letter stickers could go into the crate, but i like to keep them separate for my own ocd reasons. and i store them in this cute basket i found at the dollar spot at target.


i like to keep them separate because a) they’re fragile. some stickers fall apart and if i’m thumbing through all the other stuff, i’m afraid they’ll get lost or ruined.


if i keep them here, i’m only going through them when necessary.




// the tools

since i usually scrap at home and don’t travel much anymore, i felt an open tool caddy was best for me versus the tackle box i used to use.

here are the 2 trays i use.


or is it one tray? ooooo, did i fool ya? 🙂


seriously, it’s a junk drawer organizer that i found in the kitchen section at target. it was $7 and PERFECT for what i was looking for. the little tray can be placed on top and of course, if it just housed a pair of scissors and paperclips, it could slide back and forth. but i don’t need it for that. i just need it to condense down a bit when i’m not using it.


i keep pens horizontal, extra pens, exacto knife, ruler, pencils and erasers in another. o even have my favorite pink eraser and a tube of chapstick. yep, i keep chapstick every.where.


i bought these little jars of embellishments from michael’s on clearance a while back. i rarely use them, but they do fit nicely here.


just looking at my washi tape stash makes me happy. i need mine to be all out like this and not just tossed in a basket.


the smaller tray has some less used tools like stamps and stapler and a circle punch.

the baggie back there has a baby wipe in it, come see this post for an extra tip.


and that’s it folks. that’s how i stay organized. that’s how i keep from going insane and getting buried in supplies.

UPDATE: i posted some videos on my new space and how i’m storing my stuff these days!

if you missed the first part of this series, go check out how i prepare my photos for the project life process.

coming up next week: the extras

happy scrapping!

andrea_signature copy

project life update // going back to july


must have been a mental block. how did i miss almost the entire month of july when i did my last persnickety prints order?

who knows. but july needed to get done before i ended up at christmas.

so even though i am almost done with september, i have all the pictures i need to complete july.

so here’s it is, the lost month, except for a spread of a day we spent camping with my parents. i couldn’t get that finished before the weekend came to a close.

but here’s what we have so far:

































are you caught up? i find it easier to stay about 4-6 months behind. mainly because i have to scrap in chunks and can’t dedicate time every week to stay current. and i’m totally okay with that. part of the fun for me is reliving the past months and seeing it with new eyes.

how do i keep track of what happened though? as far as pictures are concerned  i organize by month on an external hard drive. if you’re curious about this process, see this post i did on organizing pictures for scrapbooking.

for the daily details, i rely heavily on facebook. i go back in my timeline to recall little things the boys said or did and also to help refer back to when certain events happened.

for trinkets and loose items, i keep a 3-ring binder with pocket dividers. each month has their own divider and if i have something i want to include in my project life pages, i just toss it in that monthly folder and it’s there when i get to work on that month. this way nothing gets lost. see this post for how i keep track of all the other items that make it into my scrapbooks.

i’m thinking that maybe i need to blog about this process in greater detail. would anyone want to hear about that?

thanks again for stopping by and i hope you found some inspiration today.


andrea_signature copy