unique papercrafting graphic 45

April 24, 2013

Tips & Techniques For Fun Albums & Layouts


Hello G45ers,

There are so many ways to create beautiful albums and layouts. With so many options, it might be hard to decide exactly what to make! Well today's Graphic 45 blog is all about giving you lots of fabulous ideas, tips and techniques for creating your own unique work of art! Gloria Stengel has created a gorgeous art album that's ideal for housing your layouts and other fun projects! You'll also see a layout makeover by Denise Hahn that's just incredible! Both of these creations are accompanied by a tutorial! Get ready for a super fun and informative day here at Graphic 45! First up is Gloria Stengel's magnificent art album featuring the Graphic 45 12x12 Easel Album! Take it away, Gloria!


I have been noticing many crafty folks making "art albums" as a way to keep a record of their experiments with mixed media techniques. I decided that I would create my own "mixed media" scrapbook album by turning the 12x12 Graphic 45 Easel Album Staples into a scrapbooking "altered notebook"!


I wanted the album to be fun, creative, and messy! I pulled out my inks and paints and let my creative juices flow. Since I am such a fan of Graphic 45 papers and I have a stash of older papers, I pulled them all out and just had fun creating. My motto is "use what you love." It does not matter if something is older. You can give it new life by pairing it with a new collection or with new techniques! (You can see a tiny bit of French Country A La Carte peeking out of the upper right corner.)


I cut the stand off the bottom of the Easel Album and then flipped the album sideways so that the binding spiral is on the left side. The album is now a "book" rather than an easel album. I decorated the front and back outside covers, as well as the inside covers.


I don't really care if the album closes properly as this is not a practical, photo-safe project, but rather this is a way for me to display some art and photos by placing the album onto  a shelf or coffee table.

I covered the front of the album with black cardstock a sheet of Renaissance Faire Tudor Rose paper. I stamped the paper with mixed media ink and a variety of background stamps to create some interest on the paper.  I sprayed a paper doily with mists to give it a tie-dye look.


To create an album "latch" I painted an Ornate Metal Label Holder Staples. I placed a scrap of Steampunk Debutante Eclectic Emporium paper behind the label holder.


After painting some chipboard pieces with white paint, I added glitter and ink. I added paper flowers to my chipboard arch. The little pops of orange are perfect next to all the blue!


To decorate the inside front cover I used alcohol markers to color some of the flowers on a sheet of Kraft Reflections Bed of Roses paper. (The pattern on Renaissance Faire Tudor Rose and Kraft Reflections Bed of Roses is essentially the same!) I stamped with white mixed media ink using some background stamps. Once the ink was dry, I sprayed the paper with various mists. I added a "book plate" by cutting out one of the sentiments from the Kraft Reflections Quote...Unquote paper. I colored part of the sentiment with alcohol markers.


To decorate the inside back cover, I tore a sheet of Renaissance Faire Tudor Rose paper in half and attached it to a sheet of Kraft Reflections Bed of Roses paper, making sure to line up the print.

Gloria-April-Album-8I decorated the back cover with another sheet of Renaissance Faire Tudor Rose paper, which I stamped with various background stamps and white mixed media ink. The circles are actually the ink container lid! I dipped it into the ink and stamped with it. I added a tiny bit of French Country paper to the lower left corner.

I plan to create a title page, 12 monthly pages, and an end page. I am giving this album to my daughter as a graduation gift, therefore I will not be adding photos. I will attach the layouts with photo mats so that she can add her own photos.


Graphic 45 paper:

French Country: A La Carte

Kraft Reflections: Bed of Roses, Quote...Unquote

Steampunk Debutante: Eclectic Emporium

Renaissance Faire: Tudor Rose 

Graphic 45 12 x12 Easel Album Staples

Graphic 45 Ornate Metal Label Holder Staples

Paint: Plaid Folk Art White Acrylic


Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist: Cork, Almost Black, Tuscan Sun, Peach Delight

Ranger Dylusions Ink Spray: Fresh Lime, Vibrant Turquoise

Ink: Clearsnap Colorbox Mix'd Media Inx Jasmine, Black, Copic alcohol markers

Stamps: Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz Mixed Media, Unity A Little Bit Washi, 7 Gypsies Steampunk, Oxford Impressions School Days

Cardstock: WorldWin Papers Treasures Pitch Black

Chipboard: Imaginarium Designs

Pearls: Want2Scrap

Glitter: Stephanie Barnard Sprinkles Chunky Glitter

Flowers: Petaloo, Prima, Wild Orchid Crafts

Doily: Wilton

Next up is a dazzling layout makeover by Denise Hahn! Do you have an old LO that's just begging to be redone? Get inspired to give that old LO a makeover with Graphic 45! That's exactly what Denise did with one of her very first layouts! Follow her fun and simple instructions to turn your old LO's into a remarkable work of art! A layout like this is just perfect for putting inside the beautiful art album that Gloria created! Take it away, Denise!

As a beginner, I learned my design techniques by copying other layouts I liked. I learned about layering, balance, and color. After emulating designs I liked, I eventually starting using those techniques with my own twist-and then finally creating my own techniques!  I will go through my old project first and tell you all of the things that were wrong with it, then I will go through the new one and show you how I did it!

So here it is and what I think is wrong with it- there is no major focal point, the colors are boring, the title is barely noticeable. This layout when viewed in an album would be looked at for about 2 seconds- there is no visual interest.

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 01-imp

Here is my title- THAI? I remember now that I did not have all the letters to spell out Thailand so I cheated. But the bigger offense id my lack of interest and depth here. No ink? No layer in back? I just glued these on? Today I would never allow that!

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 02-imp

Oh Heavans! This is a case of embellishing for the sake of embellishing. I remember I had these leftover bellies from the scrapbook cruise that introduced me to scrapbooking- I believe I put this here to cover up that blank space- but again applied directly to the page- I did make an effort to layer- but the layer is boring- a simple rectangle inside a rectangle? Today, NEVER!

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 03-imp

Look out! I got my corner puncher! Again I am attempting to layer, but as I remember, the mats I am using came in a pad of 4x6 and I just tore them out and slapped them on. Did I know ink was available? No depth, no interest.
Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 04-imp

ahhhh now that's better! See the colors jump off the page and sparkle!

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 05-imp

One of the most important things I did was layer, layer, layer! I started with this very busy green background. The next layer is a silk scarf I cut up, then some burlap, more Graphic 45 Cardstock, pink tissue paper, and then finally my photo. Now, the picture of me and my best friend Sandra is the focal photo. I brought pink into the picture to help it stand out amongst the tropical blues and greens. Where did I get pink? From the Color Wheel. A simple internet search will find you a complimentary color wheel- that shows what colors compliment each other- pink is right across from green and yellow.

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 06-imp

Thailand is such a vibrant country and my old layout did not really convey that. So I did some fussy cutting and glittering to add some pop and visual interest

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 07-imp

Now for the title- I inked the letters with Colorbox Pigment Ink in gold- now they stand out and have depth
Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 08-imp

I added the rest of the word- for this I used Birdsong stickers. It's okay to mix lettering-it always adds fun and interest, something in my early days I would have never done! I love how Birdsong and Tropical Travelogue just fit right together.

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 09-imp

Up close you can see more layering going on- now this page tells a story. You see the hustle and bustle of Bangkok, then you see the spa sign above us, then you see us- in a very tranquil spot- and notice instead of Travel, I added a Tranquil sticker from Birdsong- now that's and embellishment with a purpose!

Denise Hahn Graphic 45 Tropical Travelogue Birdsong Layout Redo - 10-imp

I hope you enjoyed this trip through my project redo! It was so fun to do.

Ink: Clearsnap Colorbox Chalks and Pigment ink
Adhesive- Xyron Mega Runner 
Bling- Want2Scrap
Glitter: Clearsnap
Silk Scarf
Tissue paper

Wow, don't you just love that combination of Tropical Travelogue and Bird Song? It's a match made in craft heaven! We are so glad that you all stopped by our blog today, G45ers! Tomorrow is going to be very exciting as we announce our brand new Graphic 45 Design Team for 2013! It truly is one of the most highly anticipated days of the year for us! We hope you'll stop by and meet our new team! We want to thank Gloria Stengel and Denise Hahn for their beautiful work today! We had so much fun and we hope you did too!

Happy Papercrafting!

Your Friends at Graphic 45


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Gorgeous projects. Love the coloring of the Kraft papers.

These are great!! Thank you!

Just amazing projects!!

Oh boy do I know about those early albums. I fixed a few that where done on Construction paper....yes I did to that. But the rest I've decided to keep as they are. At least until I don't have much to scrapbook anymore when the kids are grown. I feel that even though they are pretty bad it is still fun to look at those pictures. I'm even nostalgic about my bad scrapbooking it reminds me how far I've come.

fabulous designs! like'em all, especially the turquois and green colors!

Beautiful projects today as always!

Wowwwwwwww!!! These are gorgeous!! LOVING that cover of the album!!

I love this....I bought an easel awhile back but then wasn't sure if I really wanted to use it and now I have an alternative that I think I will like better!

Thanks again!

Gloria, your album is fabulous. The colors feel calming. Love the pops of color and the stamping. How fun to go back and re-do Denise. The new version is vibrant and full of life.

Wow those albums are just creatively stunning ! The blues yellows and greens stunning colour combo .
Thanks for showcasing them and giving bus so much creative inspiration! Thanks !

Would love to see more of the 2013 album. The cover is so pretty.

Very nice! Love the second layout. I'm with Gloria in that some albums may not be the best as an album for photos, but I love doing the artsy part. Great creativity.

Two great tutorials and two wonderful projects. I love them both..and learned a lot by reading the step outs. Thanks, Gloria and Denise!

Love how Denise flipped the Easel Album to create a book. Beautiful project. Wonderful idea on recreating older layouts. Inspiring projects!!

beautiful...very clever!

Love the Thailand before & after!

Love todays blog!!! The layout makeover is amazing.

Beautiful album. I love it!

What a great book and layout!!! Thanks for sharing them with us!

Oh wowie both projects are truly stunning!!! Thank you so much Gloria and Denise...you ladies have shown us so much beauty the past year!!! Can't wait to meet the new Design Team....have a wonderful day everybody hugs Amy

I bet the butterflies in the up and coming design team members are bigger than anything Martha could make a punch out of. Thanks for the inspiration today and good luck tomorrow to all of the hopefuls!!

FANTASTIC!!! When I go back and look at my first layouts it's quite eye opening :) everyone has to start somewhere.

Very interesting on the way Denise changed her layout! I am still on the mat and corners but now I ink!! I second guess my self on layering! I am afraid of putting too much on!

Stunning. . . and I am bookmarking!

Love both of these ideas! I have an 8x8 easel album that has been waiting to get used :) Thank you for the inspiration

Love your creation. Just filled with so much inspiration.

Fab projects again! Love the the album idea - will have to try that. Thanks for sharing.

I really enjoyed both of these projects. Funny that Gloria stated she wanted the first one "messy", too. LOL. I do not see it as messy at all! It is great!



Dang, now I want to go reddo my old album pages!

Fantastic projects and inspiration using the fab G45 papers, thank you.

Thanks for the directions and the gorgeous examples! Love the color spritzing!

Once again wonderful projects. I will be heading off to my scraproom to re-do some layouts now!

Love, love it. Always inspiring!

Excellent work! I love the colors in the art book, and it's really inspiring me to make more accessible display books like this to have around the house for the kids to reflect on. And this scrapbook page makeover is really beautiful! The color depth and texture really give the feeling of experience of being in Thailand! Well done!

Both projects are wonderful. And the tutorials are very helpful.

Wow, such gorgeous lay-outs! I just love the vintage feel to them.

Amazing projects!!

Awesome projects!!!

clever for both projects thanks

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