Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Seasonal Blogging Syndrome

Hi folks! Nice to see you. I hope you've been well, and that life has treated you kindly since we last met. Or, if you're a first time visitor, welcome! Dust off a chair and park yourself for a while.

Looking back at my time in blog-land, I can see a distinct pattern of posting. And this same pattern is reflected in my crafting - during the winter, I curl up on the sofa with some yarn-based project and rarely leave the house unless provisions are needed. Except the twice-daily trek to school and back. Oh, and work, of course!

But as spring starts to finally peek its nose out from behind winter's long cloak, I usually start to get my paper-craft urge on, and also dust off the blog. This year, however, I have a further motivation to get cracking. I am determined that this year I will crack the 5-year backlog (!) of photos for scrapbooking.

"Surely not, Sarah!" I hear you cry, "You must be mad to think you can scrap all of those thousands of photos without losing the plot."

And this time last month I would have agreed wholeheartedly with you and continued to only tell some of my family story in photos. Now, however, I have discovered Project Life. I don't mean the Project Life where you scrap a photo a day, and feel guilty about missing some, because surely we craft to enjoy ourselves, not to add to the massive burden of guilt that most women seem to develop over a lifetime. This is how I want to feel about my scrapbooking:

And I do believe that I am actually going to be able to churn through the years of backlog fairly quickly. Let me tell you how.

I ordered 1000 (I kid you not) photos from Photobox covering last year, 2012, all at 4x6. I sorted these into date order (a large glass of wine and some good TV helped smooth the way). Then I collected all the page protector types that I had purchased (some specifically for Project Life, some American Crafts) and stuck them in a spare 3 ring album. This was the hardest part, because they're slippy little buggers when you're trying to group them all... though on second thoughts, perhaps that was the fault of the wine! It does however make for easier selection when I've decided on my photo layout.

The process:

Now comes the satisfying part. I take each month one at a time, and select first the photos that I think I will get round to putting on a "traditional" scrapbooking page. I put these in a spare 12x12 protector, and include them in the album for easy finding.

I then choose more photos that aren't easily scrappable in my opinion (i.e. bad lighting, dodgy backgrounds, weird colours etc) but that still tell a story of what we were doing at that time. Cropping where appropriate, I then stick them in a page protector.

I look for some colour that is unifying with all the photos, and have a look through my stash to see if there is any paper/plain card that will co-ordinate with them, and use this to fill in the gaps.

(That gap there in the bottom row is where I've run out of that card colour!)

Then I get to play with stamps, stickers, rub-ons, punches and all that jazz. Can you see I've even written on the photos here and there? That is a real evolution for me *polishes scrapping bravery award*. These are all in the early stages of development, I'm adding to them here and there as I work my way through my enormous, untouched-for-a-year stash of paper, card and embellishments.

So, there are several guilt-reducing reasons to like this way of documenting everyday life (not every day life, because for me that would be very, very dull. Housework layouts, anyone?).
  1. The photos are off my computer and into an album.
  2. I don't have to spend a lot of time thinking about what looks good with each photo (a standard LO usually takes me days!).
  3. I'm using my stash.
  4. I'M USING MY STASH! (that one is so important, I just had to say it again, but louder)
  5. It's also making me take more photos now of normal stuff, so I can include it this year.

There are two other things I have discovered:
  1. I'm not that keen on the rounded corners, which is a shame because I invested in some of the Project Life digital files, and they're all rounded edges.
  2. I think you could easily mount these on 12x12 sheets and just use the normal undivided page protectors. I can see me having to put this into practice because I am drawn to very specific layout styles, and I'm fast running out of those page protectors!

I'm still including my traditional LOs in between the Project Life LOs, it's so satisfying to see them all filling up the album. I've only been dabbling for just over a week, and I'm already up to August in terms of actual photos in protectors. The prettying up will take a bit longer, but it's like having a load of ATCs to do, quick and easy, here and there!

I hope I've given you a little food for thought, please let me know if you're in a similar state of affairs, I'd love to mosey on through the blogosphere and meet some new people!


debs14 said...

Aha! So you're still out there! Good to see your blog pop up in my sidebar again. Have you come across Julie Kirk's blog recently? I think you'd find it useful if you need a bit of a nudge into blogging more often. The Push Up Bra Approach. Go on, click over there, you won't regret it ...

Sarah said...

Thanks for the tip, Debs. I agree, Julie's new blog series is great! I will be back soon with more posts x