Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Is There an Organization Muse?

I think that's the muse that visits me most frequently. Creativity is difficult for me and I'm always struggling with it. Organization, now that falls from my fingertips like water from a fountain. I managed to CASE or come up with designs for a few more cards this morning.

There is a quote about creative mess and neat and tidy idleness. I have neat and tidy creativity. I can't create in a mess. That photo at the top of my blog is my scrapping room. The more I work in a space, the neater it gets. What creates a mess in my workspace would be potential projects. Those ideas that I'm testing, the sample I bring home from a crop, the new stamps that I haven't put away yet. Once those potentials turn into projects, the mess goes away It must be because I hate to look for things. I don't put a tool down when I've finished using it, I put it away. When I want it again, be it in three minutes or three days, I know exactly where it is and I can find it instantly. I don't know if it's faster or slower than just putting tools down and searching for them a bit. I only know that is the way I work best.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Stamping Hands

I get ink all over my hands when I stamp things. It isn't that I'm sloppy with the inkpads or with the inked up stamps. The cleaning process gets ink on my hands. I use squares of paper towel and a diluted Simple Green solution in a spray bottle. I could use a fancy stamp cleaning system, but I find they aren't as effective and leave my stamps looking inked. Ick.

When the ink bleeds through the paper towel, my hands get covered in ink. I found at Angelas a soap for artists and mechanics that takes the ink right off. It's green and kind of minty smelling. I've learned not to scrub many times in a stamping session, because it is a harsh soap and will dry my skin out very quickly.

I need to get more bars of this soap for my mechanic husband to use. It should get the grease and gunk right off his hands after a day turning wrench.

I haven't even looked at purple paper. I'm hip deep in cardmaking at the moment and don't want to interrupt the muse. My muse is an elusive and skittish one, taking flight at the least opportunity. When she is with me, I must move with speed, lest she escape before I finish a project.

Monday, April 28, 2008


I'm looking for storage systems for my wood mounted stamps, for my ever-increasing paper stash, my scrapping tools like punches, and for my finished scrapbooks. I looked at Elfa and decided not to go that route. I'd prefer to have furniture, not metal baskets. I've had Elfa before and while I liked it, I don't want to go back. This means that I'll probably go with some custom cabinetry solution and get a free standing cabinet of some type. I'm not interested in putting things on wheels and moving them around. One of the systems that I like is a behind a door stamp storage system. That will only work for stamps, but it will work very well for stamps. I wouldn't mount it above a desk, as I'm a scrapper, not a stamper and I want my tools right within reach above my desk, not a lot of stamps. But, since I'm planning on setting myself up in a corner, I could put it to the side of my work space instead.

Another option would be to get a small cabinet, or a much larger one. I like the idea of the larger cabinet, but it is also designed to hide what I've got behind doors that I might not ever close. For folks that work out in a shared space, hiding your stuff makes sense, but in a working studio, it isn't a good idea. The best thing might be a bookcase. Didn't we just get two large bookcases?

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Digital or Not?

Digital scrapping has a significant appeal to me, the digital connected, always plugged in person. But the learning curve is not one I feel like climbing right now. I'm having fun learning Disney Style scrapping and keeping up with my Club Scrap Kits. That's enough for now. The Disney Style scrapping is tricky. I want to create pages before the trip, but I'm limiting myself to creating things for the trip itself. Autograph stuff, cards to mail to friends and so on. After the trip, and I look through all the photos, I'll make the pages.

My next challenge is to select colors for an album. I've got a plan for a group of pages that can use a rainbow of colors, or I can pull paper that goes with a theme that I want to use. I'm feeling the need for purple, after a lot of blue and brown 'guy' pages. Purple can be very girly. This one will be my album, so I'm inclined to go for the girly.

Thursday, April 24, 2008


My mojo went a-wandering yesterday. I tidied up my scrap space, got out a lovely set of paper and then just stared at it. I couldn't make my hands move the paper around, pick up an ink pad or even move towards a pair of scissors. There was no muse.

I thought about running errands, but I finished a novel instead. Later in the day the muse returned enough that I got three layouts finished. But when I wanted to work on cards, which are difficult for me and work on a minibook in colors that I've been fighting with, three layouts feels like failure. No, not failure. Less than success. I had goals that I didn't meet, though I tried.

I have to work today, and won't have as much time in my scraproom. If Mojo and muse return, I could get more done today in less time. I'm not making any plans or setting any goals. You can't force the muse.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Cutting Edge Accuracy

I have this vision issue. I'm cross eyed, and even with glasses on (I have four different pairs), I can't use rulers they way everyone else does. Things have to be in the correct positions for me to be able to see them. I can't just slap a ruler down and be accurate. Unfortunately, my Tonic trimmer does not line paper up the way I need for me to be consistent and accurate. Accurate isn't as important as consistent. But since I can't always see what I'm doing, I am sometimes accurate and sometimes a bit off. Sigh.

When cutting large things, accuracy isn't as critical, but for things like inchies, it makes a difference. I don't do inchies if I can avoid them. Last night, I couldn't avoid them. It took me for-blinking-ever, but I got 144 one inch squares cut with very little error. I'd rather not have to do that again, but it's nice to know that I can.

When I get new cutting tools, one of the things I should do is to line up scrap paper with the marks and make a set of practice cuts. Then carefully measure what I've cut. That way, I can tell if I need to line things up with the right edge of the marked line, with the left edge of the marked line or smack dab down the middle of it. I've had my tonic for about a month now and I still haven't done this. Perhaps now would be a good time.