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Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Crafting Is Good Medicine, YES!

Happy September! Raise your hand  if you know that crafting is GOOD for your health? Ok, I see those hands out there! LOL!

I discovered papercrafting some years ago out of the blue. I couldn't believe how fun, relaxing and soothing it was. It helped me release a lot of stress and tension as well as share my new craft with loved ones.

Then, when I leaped into drawing and painting, it had a similar affect on me. I was so surprised these two creative expressions calmed my nerves and gave me a new outlook on life. After this, I was open to trying many creative interest like floral designs, guitar lessons, sewing, photography and interior design.

So, I know from personal experience the healing power of arts and crafts and the joy they provide.
There is something about working with your hands and concentrating on a fun project that works wonders for the soul.

Earlier this year, I ran across this article called "How Craft Is Good For Our Health," by Susan Luckman, Professor of Cultural Studies at University of South Australia.  I totally connected to it.

It was about the research and science that proves what us crafters have known and experienced for years. CRAFTING IS GREAT MEDICINE! She does a good job explaining how particularly textile crafts have wonderful health benefits.

Also, I heard some of my fellow creators say crafting is "cheap therapy." This is so true especially with art.  You can express so many locked up emotions and feelings like anger and rage as well as joy love. It's like a safe friend you can vent to on canvas. (Oh, I have done this a many a time.)

In the article, Luckman mentions how different textile crafts offer different benefits.

"...knitting was found to reduce workplace stress and compassion fatigue experienced by oncology nurses.

Quilting has been found to enhance participant’s experiences of well-being as they move into older age."

Also, arts and crafts help me express parts of my personality. When I am making cards the giving, supportive, feminine and frilly parts of my personality shine. But when I paint, I can express my curious, angry, adventurous, sassy, colorful and imperfect parts.

This Summer, I learned to crochet. It has had a relaxing affect on me as well. It is so detailed and I have to pay close attention and focus. This felt especially good during stressful times. It temporarily blocked out the negative noise and gave me a break. Also, it was more fun crocheting with the nice group of ladies from the craft club I am apart of. We chit chat, laugh and crochet.

So, I agree with the author of this article. Crafting has been great medicine for me and I hope for you too. When you have time, check out this article and see what you think. How CRAFT Is Good...Article
So the next time you are at your local craft store buying more supplies and wondering about your budget, remember CRAFTING IS GOOD MEDINCE AND SHOP AWAY! LOL!!!

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

INSPIRED SHE Edition: Jen Gallacher

Today, I am thrilled to introduce my next "Inspired She" guest 
Jen Gallacher. I first became acquainted with her years ago at Two Peas in a Bucket scrapbooking website. If I remember correctly, she was on the design team that created lots of fun classes and special events for us. I was new to the scrapbooking world back then, so it was all so exciting and energizing for me.

Inspired She Guest: Jen Gallacher

Recently, I started watching her YouTube videos again and felt so inspired and motivated. She is a "gem" in our papercrafting world and I am celebrating her today!

Jen is currently the Marketing Coordinator for Jillibean Soup, and Creative Editor for Scrapbook & Cards Today Magazine. Her past design team positions were with:
Echo Park Paper
Carta Bella Paper
American Crafts
Two Peas in a Bucket
Karen Foster Design
Lil Davis Designs

Ok, let's get this Q&A party started. Also, I sprinkled pictures of some of her favorite papercrafting projects throughout this interview. Enjoy!

Kelly: When did you start papercrafting?
Jen:  "I started paper crafting when my sister took me to a scrapbooking class at Pebbles in My Pocket in 1997. I soon joined her as a designer for PaperKuts magazine and have worked in the industry ever since."

"Let's Live Here" Layout by Jen

 Kelly:  How do you handle it when you have lost your creative mojo?
Jen:  "I lose my creative mojo all the time. I take a break, look on Pinterest, buy new supplies, or make another kind of craft to jumpstart my creativity again."

Kelly: How has papercrafting helped you in life's stressful moments especially with the loss of your son?
Jen:  "I lost my son to cancer in 2007. The scrapbooking community rallied around us and sent us uplifting cards, put together a beautiful fundraising event, and made sure we were doing ok. I have no idea what I would have done without the amazing people in this community. They helped me through the worst time in our lives. There aren't many other hobbies that will love on you like that."

Kelly: WOW, thanks for sharing this! I am SO glad this community loved you through that experience. Papercrafting and this community has gotten me through some dark times as well and I am grateful.

Kelly : Who and/or what inspires you creatively? 
Jen:  "I love learning from other designers. I'll watch YouTube videos, read blog posts, pin other designers' projects. There is so much talent in our world. I love seeing where the trends are heading and trying new things."

"Unbelievably Blessed" Card by Jen
Kelly: On your blog you mentioned #makingitmeaningful. What does this mean to you?
Jen:  "#makeitmeaningful is the approach I take to creating. If I'm going to make a scrapbooking layout, I want it to have a special meaning for my children who read it. It's more than just about what we did, it's about what we felt. When I create a card or paper crafting project, I try to think of someone that I can give the project to. It's so much more meaningful to spread the joy around."   

Kelly: Do you have any upcoming classes or projects you would like to share with us?
Jen: "I offer several scrapbooking classes on my shop site. Look for a NEW class coming soon. Be sure to subscribe to my email list to learn more!" 

3-D Cactus Set by Jen

Kelly: Thanks Jen for this inspiring Q&A time as well as your fantastic pictures. Blessings to you and all of your work!

I hope you all visit Jen's social media sites (listed below) and subscribe to her email list at  www.jengallacher.com. She has wonderful papercrafting techniques and projects to learn from. So please check her out.

Jen is truly an inspiration and I hope something was said today to lift your spirits as you balance life and crafting! Take care and look forward to the next "Inspired She!" Make sure you SUBSCRIBE to this blog so you won't miss the next edition.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

My Shutterfly Photo Book

Today I am sharing my photobook I got from Shutterfly. A few months ago, I received a free book coupon from Kohl's and decided to use it. I thought having a book with some of my more recent art, cards and crafts would be fun to have.

The process of designing this book was exciting and when I finished, I was pleased. It is a 8x8, 20 pages, glossy, and hard backed book with full color.

I ordered this one and ended up giving it to my in-laws. They loved it. But, I liked it so much I had to order another one to keep.

Here is the cover and a few of the pages. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

New Card & Scrapbooking Supplies

I love watching HSN during their 24 hour craft programing and seeing all the new and innovative items. During the last craft day, I thought I was free and clear of shopping but when these two products popped up, I jump on it! LOL!

First, this is an Anna Griffin Birthday Topper Kit. It has lots of metallic and floral kissed sentiments to add to any card. They SOLD OUT! Glad I got mine before that happened. :)

50 cardstock die cuts

So Pretty!

Next, I got the "Carpe Diem" paper collection by Craft Factory. I had not heard of this brand before and thought I would give it a try. Here is the link at HSN. Click HERE

Paper pad, gold word thickers, rub-ons, & lots of stickers

6x6 paper pad

These supplies should keep me busy for a while. Plus, it is nice the two brands work together. So, crafting here I come!

Have a good day!

Friday, July 12, 2019

INSPIRED SHE: Meet Nylene Budge

Today's "Inspired She" features my first guest, Nylene Budge of Utah. I first met her years ago when I was an excited and new card maker and scrapbooker. She led an online group called the "Pokey Peas" at Two Peas in a Bucket papercrafting website.  She gladly welcomed me and the group cheered for me.

Over the years, not only have we shared our various creative projects but we have shared our lives. What a sisterhood! Thanks Nylene!!!!

Nylene is a wonderful crafter, wife, mother, grandmother and even great grandmother. Although I know she would blush when I say this, but she is a master at making scrapbook pages and greeting cards along with other crafts.

One of her precious gifts is hosting an annual Summer craft camp for her grandkids at her home.  Even her husband offers his woodmaking arts to the event.

This year's theme was Dinosaurs. I love that she is passing on her passion for crafting to the next generations. These are fun memories they will always remember.

Scrapbook page created by Nylene to celebrate the 2017 camp.

So, let's talk with my dear friend, Nylene.

Kelly: When did you start scrapbooking?

Nylene: "I started making a scrapbook of my life when I was 12 and continued until I graduated from High School.  I learned about Creating Keepsakes in 1994 and began the kind of scrapping I do now."

Isn't this double page so cute with grand son and grandpa?

Kelly: How did Cousin Camp start? 

Nylene: "It began with 3 grandchildren as a “Grandma’s Sleepover” with cousins. That was about 2004.  As more grandchildren came it grew and grew.  One year our 7 year-old granddaughter, Sammie, thought it should be called Cousin Camp and the name has stuck."

Kelly: How many days is it? 

Nylene: "It is 2 days and one night.  This year the 9 who attended ranged in age from 5 to 18."

Kelly: What type of activities do you have during the camp? 

Nylene: "We usually do a few crafts, play games and the boys go out to the shop with grandpa and make a wood project. We always have Hobo (tinfoil) dinners, and a talent show before bedtime. The second day we have the traditional Tea Party (Sprite and treats) where each person must come to the table in a hat and a scarf, lei, or tie. This started when they were very young and they still enjoy it as teenagers."

Cousin's Luncheon

Kelly: What is one of your favorite parts of the camp? 

Nylene: "I love it when a grandchild wants to pick the theme and be in charge.  This year, Drew (9) chose Dinosaurs.  We had huge paper mache eggs which when broken open contained big plastic dinosaurs.  Drew helped with the Dino Luncheon of Dino-themed  foods, such as Dino Claws (Bugles) and Dino Bones (pretzels.) . Later they each etched silhouettes of dinosaurs on drinking glasses. This was one of my favorite Cousin Camps ever."

Dinosaurs came to the camp this year! LOL!
Nylene making the Dino eggs. They were truly a labor of love.

Dinosaur eggs were a big hit! THERE ARE DINOS INSIDE, TOO.

T-Rex Bean bag Toss game. Who is winning? :)

Nothing like a Dino Tattoo.

I hope you feel inspired to try this marvelous idea or something like this with your loved ones. Not only is it a great time of bonding and pure fun but the kids are learning the power of crafting to use throughout their lives. Nylene, thank you so much for sharing this awesome family event with us.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

INSPIRED SHE: Kelly's Craft Story

Last month, I was excited to start the "Inspired She" series. Today I would like to share my own inspired journey into the world of papercrafting.

I grew up in a creative family but never had any real passion for arts and crafts. I remember my mom whipping out her hot glue gun creating beautiful floral wreaths and decorating Summer straw hats. I helped and enjoyed spending time with mom but I was like, "Nah, not my thing."

Years later, when I was dating my husband, he pointed out how creative I was. He saw it in the way I dressed and put myself together. I think he was seeing glimmers of my creativity before I saw it.

Then in 2006, I was going through dark depression and anxiety and just shut down from everyone and everything. I was so tired and just needed to recharge my batteries and recover.

As a way to stay connected to my friends and family, I thought to make my first ever Christmas cards. Overwhelming joy swept over me after I made this first set of cards. I was now inspired to make more.

I had new found energy to find and visit local scrapbook stores for supplies. This is when I discovered how life giving, soothing, rewarding and fun papercrafting could be.

One day I was at a friend's blog which lead me to Two Peas in a Bucket papercrafting website. Finding this site was like finding an oasis. I had no idea card making and scrapbooking was so big. That site was full of resources and introduced me to a new world. Plus, I had a place to share my cards.

I got a note from a sweet lady named Cindy that invited me to a group on the message boards called the "Pokey Peas." From that day on, I found a wonderful and supportive group of friends. They cheered for me and encouraged me as I was growing my new found passion.
Early card from 2010

Meanwhile, my friends and family were so excited about the cards I was sending them and suggested I start a business. So my husband and I did in 2011 and K. Simone Designs was born. Since then, my cards have been received by loved ones, women's organizations and even a few celebs and public figures. Also, we sold our cards at "Inventori," actress Tori Spelling's former store.

Cards we donated to a NBA wives event in 2012.

After a few years of making scrapbook pages and cards, I wanted to learn how to draw and eventually paint. This lead me to Donna Downey, Marion Smith of Prima and Julie Fei-Fan Balzar. I loved watching their videos on art journaling and painting and this further inspired me. I never liked to draw but suddenly I was practicing every day for a while. The next thing I knew, I was making big leaps into art and having a grand 'ole time.

Me proudly sharing my first floral paintings in 2010.

Since then, I have surprised myself with interest in other creative activities like writing, home decorating, guitar lessons, make-up and fashion, baking, crocheting and even floral arrangement.

The thing that gets me is this creativity has been in me my whole life and I never knew it. What a wonderful time to shine.

Crafting has been a joy for me and a life teacher. I have discovered so much about myself that maybe I wouldn't have learned if I hadn't hit that dark time. As a Christian, I do believe God is guiding my steps and helped me uncover a whole side of me that was ready to emerge and celebrate.

So to all my artsy craftsy friends out there I hope this inspired you to keep crafting. Not only is it good medicine but it is exciting! To all my friends who have never picked up washi tape or a hot glue gun, give a try. You might not get hooked but you will have fun. Get your craft party on!!!

Friday, June 28, 2019

My Birthday in Pink Layouts

Hello all! Today, I am posting pictures of two scrapbook pages. They are featuring my birthday. I used Kaisercraft patterned papers along with some extra supplies I had for a while. Take a look.

Scrapbooking these special birthday pages was a joy and hope you enjoyed them too. Have a good day!