November 05, 2015


It's time to take a break, go away on a little vacation. I'll be gone a couple of weeks but before heading out of town I put together this custom cover for my holiday diary. Hopefully it'll be filled with many pleasurable and delightful  memories when I return.

Citrus Twist Oct Kit : Pink Paislee Memorandum (Labels, Desktop), Amy Tangerine Finders Keepers Pursuit, Evalicious This Way Snip Snip Labels, Citrus Twist Stamp, cardstock

October 30, 2015


Working in 12"x12" has always been the most challenging format for me. So when I'm scheduled to create layouts for Citrus Twist Kit based on Kasia's sketches, I take the opportunity to study how she approaches designing in this format. Even after all these years I'm still discovering new insights.   


In this sketch, where she places the word "Photograph" and "journaling" starts me thinking about varying the points of interests within the three rectangle blocks to create a zig-zag movement. Doing this adds a dynamic element to the otherwise generally static 12"x12" format because the eye movements from the caption through the inclined angle in the photo down to the title.    

Oct Sketch

It just so happens that there are two Crate Paper journal cards in the kit that fit the design nicely and the layout comes together effortlessly. However once it's done I find myself fretting over the blank, white space underneath the word "Always", it keeps bugging me until I spied my watercolour set. That gave me the idea of brushing on a blue wash to soften that stark white space. And with that the page is complete.

Seek Detail

Citrus Twist Oct Kits : Crate Paper Wonder Splendid & Brave, Crate Paper Craft Market Ephemera, Pink Paislee Memorandum (Labels, Show Room, Washi Tape Booklet), Pink Paislee Cedar Lane Tiny Word Sticker, Basic Grey B-Side Journal Cards, Amy Tangerine Finders Keepers Pursuit, Citrus Twist (Flair Button, Label Sheet)

Photo Credit : EME

October 25, 2015

Cloud Gate

Skies reflected in flooded fields, plants brushed by wind, immense waves of grain rolling across expansive rice fields - these images of Chihshang the Land of Emperor Rice stays with me long after Cloud Gate's performance ends. They together with captured sounds of  the rustling of grain, the soughing of wind, and the pealing of thunder tells the story of the cultivation of rice in Taiwan. The dancers move in a dance of labour that's a synthesis of man and nature.


This Citrus Twist layout is my attempt to replicate the sensations evoked by experiencing this dreamily seductive work using colour and pattern layering to capture some the shimmering, transporting intensity of this song of the earth. Central is the figure of the dancer, part of this landscape but also apart from it, toiling amidst it's immensity. It represents something of a beautiful, partially remembered dream that lingers in the memory.   


Citrus Twist Oct Kits : Pink Paislee Memorandum (Punch Card, Desktop, Washi Tape Booklet), Pink Paislee Cedar Lane (Riverside Lane, Tiny Word Stickers), Dear Lizzy Documentary (On My Desk, Snapshots Black Foam Thickers, Me & You), Basic Grey B-Side (Journal Cards, Folding Photo Frames, May Arts Linen Fabric, Kraft Cardstock

Photo Credit : Foundry

October 20, 2015

A Little DIY

Today I'm making my own print. I know I have a carton full of pattern papers but sometimes it's fun to engage in a little DIY and to design my own. The end result will be a hand painted pattern showing delicate texture and nuances of brush stroke.  It's not anything too complicated, just simple watercolour stripes created using acrylic paints from the Memories Trend shop. 


Using watercolour is perhaps more authentic but I chose acrylics because I can get a more opaque coverage and a broader range of grey tones by mixing black with white paint. Once I've mixed a few batches of greys I can create my pattern. Using round, pointed brushes of different sizes allows me to draw a mixture of thick and thin lines. You can use water colour paper but I prefer cardstock with it's subtle surface texture.   

Favorite Tutorial1

Once my handmade print is dry I'm ready to create my layout using a variety of Technique Tuesday stamps. Now these are great quality stamps which produce crisp, clean text for titles and captions. However what I want is a  distressed, gently imperfect look to go with my print. To achieve that I spray a light mist of water into the air and wave my inked stamp through the mist. Wherever water droplets land on the stamp they will dispel ink and produce spots or patches of white. These result in a stamped image that's slightly flawed as you can see in the letter 'O' of my title and the stippling effect on the word adore. It's an unpredictable technique so I experimented a few times and chose the most interesting results for my layout.

Favorite Tutorial2

And that's how this week's layout came together. I was inspired by the new arrival of mixed media supplies in the Memories Trend shop from stencils, gesso, texture pastes, embossing powers to Ranger's distress spray stains, paints and inks. I love how the water colour pattern adds a soft, organic touch to my otherwise structured and linear design approach and hope you find the couple of tips I shared useful.  


Memories Trend Supplies : Webster's Pages Sunday Picnic Rainbow Sky, Technique Tuesday (Adored Stamp, Favourite Memories Stamp), Studio Calico Lemon Lush Flighty, Ranger (Black Soot Distress Paint, Mini Mister), Kaisercraft Black Ink Pad, Bazzill White Cardstock

Photo Credit : TawnyNina

October 15, 2015

Morning Showers

Finally the rains. What a welcomed sight the pre-monsoon downpour. Not just because it provides a respite from the heat and a slight improvement in the haze conditions but more importantly as an indicator that the seasonal deluge will soon be upon us. With that the forest fires in Sumatra and South Kalimantan may then be extinguished, well at least until the next year.


Citrus Twist Oct Kits : Basic Grey B-Side (Stellar, Folding Photo Frames), Pink Paislee (Memorandum Washi Tape Booklet, Cedar Lane Arrow Avenue), Citrus Twist Flair Button, white cardstock

Photo Credits : LenaSevcikova