Hello there, friends! November is here and we’re less than 30 days away from the first day of our Document December project! If you haven’t even taken your DD contents out of their box yet, we are here today to inspire you to do just that, and get your project ready for the busy month of December. Whether you prefer to set up your album or notebook in advance, or create something fresh and new each day, our team will be here over the next three Saturdays to bring a new post of inspiration on how you can make the most of your kit, organize your supplies and build a successful Document December project that records your best December memories. Today, we’re kicking it all off with tips and ideas from Steph Grimes, Amanda-jayne Baldwin, Jen McMurtrey, Sabrina Poole and Melissa Mann!
Steph | I love documenting our holiday season! There are always so many activities, celebrations and traditions and they end up being some of my favorite stories each year. Last year, 2018, was the first year I completed a daily album and that’s my plan again this year. I also plan to work on my album every day because I had so much fun doing it that way last year. To help keep me organized, I have all my kit supplies stored in a 13” x 13” plastic container from IRIS. A few years ago, I bought some of these great tray inserts with reconfigurable dividers that work great for storing project kits. (I don’t know if they still make the trays, but they are so awesome!)
In the storage container itself, I am storing all my 6” x 8” papers, some extra papers I’ve added, stickers, and stamps. Then, in the divided tray, I am storing all the little bits and bobs, like wood veneer, acrylics and die cuts, as well as the 3” x 4” and 4” x 6” journaling tags. When I’m not working on this project, the tray will just slide in on top of the things I’m storing in the bottom and has a dedicated spot on my shelf. When I am working with this kit, the tray easily comes out so I can access and find everything I have to work with.
I am using a 6” x 8” album for this year’s project and I like to make foundation pages ahead of time. This really helped keep me on track last year, ensured I had time to get as crafty as I wanted because I could do a large part of it ahead of time, and helped me get my album done shortly after December ended.
Here, I’ve embellished two of the 4” x 6” journaling tags with die cuts and wood veneer and paired them each with a 3” x 4” journaling tag to kickstart my story for these two days. One of the stories will be about our Christmas tree and will likely include details about the tree itself (we may need to buy a new one this year!) and decorating. For the other page, I’d like to focus on joy by identifying five things that are bringing us joy on that particular day. Doing some of this thought work and preparation ahead of time helps me remember what stories I want to tell and what supplies I want to use.
Like I mentioned, I like to get crafty in this album and sometimes I just want to go all out! But when I’m working day to day, I don’t always have time, so doing some of this work ahead of time helps. One of the special pieces I made already is this quilted tag. I used a hexagon punch to punch shapes from a few of the 6” x 8” papers in the kit. Then, I arranged them on a tag I had in my stash to create a sort of paper-pieced quilt. I embellished with a stamped sentiment from the Christmas Phrases Stamp and a few puffy stickers, added ribbon and some tabs punched right into my album.
I can’t wait for this project and to see what you create! Happy HOLIDAY scrapping!
Amanda-jayne | Hi, friends! It’s Amanda here, and I am so excited to share how I’ve prepared my Document December album, as well as give you a few top tips & early glimpses too! I just LOVE this season, and Buddy the Elf maybe one of my idols, ha! #nogrinchhere. This year, I’m a little time poor so I’ve opted for a smaller, easier album to record this year’s festivities. My album is a 4″ x 4″ pocket page album, but it was a tad boring for my liking! No surprises then that my album preparation involved quite a bit of embellishment and decoration. I started with the book plate and spine of the album, and added the year with our Red Dipped Puffy Alphabet Stickers. I also glued pom pom trim (from my sewing box stash) across the top of my album cover. The tiny pom poms reminded me of snow and really added a fun & playful element to the cover.
Top Tip #1: Selecting a smaller pocket size album will ensure that we don’t get overwhelmed by the enormity of documenting the season.
Speaking of fun, I just loved decorating the cover! The Merry Christmas Acrylic was a perfect title and adornment for this year’s album—take a peek!
I’m so happy with how this turned out! Simple, sweet and really pretty! Those stocking die cuts from the Document December 2019 Kit are everything! And of course, I couldn’t just do the front cover, so here’s a peek at the inner cover too.
You’ll notice that on my desk I have cut a whole lot of patterned papers to the 4″ x 4″ size to aid my album preparation. I have used both the Document December 2019 Kit papers, as well as one of the Noteworthy 12 x 12 Paper Collection papers too!
Top Tip #2: When it comes to unusual sized albums, it helps to pre-cut a bunch of background papers so that all you need to do is print your photo and add a sentiment and sticker or two!
For the inside cover of my album, I combined the new Good Cheer Acetate Die Cuts with more of the puffy stickers from the Document December 2019 Kit. In keeping with my love for fabric trims and textural elements, I also added some vintage burlap lace & a couple of tassels from my stash.
Top Tip #3: To avoid the appearance of glue behind the clear acetate, I used the puffy stickers to hide the spots and help hold the acetate in place.
I attached two tassels to one of the album rings, and while I was there I decided to hole punch the Good Cheer Acetate Die Cut star banner and thread it onto the ring as well. For maximum impact, I also threaded the large gold acrylic star from the onto this ring as it’s embellishments galore for this mini album!
Top Tip #4: Hole punch die cuts and maximize embellishments with openings to use as ‘dangling charms’ on album rings. Great for adding interest & texture to your pages, as well as softening the appearance of the album rings.
Last, but by no means least, to avoid over-filling my pockets I adhered the Dec 2019 Gold Acrylic to the front of my clear pocket, not to the pattern paper base card! Such a great opening page to my super sweet DD album!
Top Tip #5: Adhere larger embellishments to the exterior of your pockets to keep them from getting too bulky!
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas for me! I hope my DD album preparation has inspired you to get started on your Christmas documenting too!
Jen | I am so excited about this year’s Document December project and have already begun to get all of my Elle’s Studio goodies organized. Because we don’t have littles anymore and aren’t as busy with activities, I’ve decided to begin curating stories of my childhood Christmas memories in order to pass them on to my own children.
While I do have a 6″ x 8″ album on standby in case any issues arise, I plan to use a vintage Betty Crocker cookbook that I purchased over the summer. It will be perfect because it is in binder form and already has tabbed dividers that I can alter. Pairing my Elle’s Studio products with a box of old Christmas ephemera should be the perfect mix to create a really fun junk journal. The majority of the prep work will take place in early November when I head to a four-day crop where I can work on it uninterrupted. I’m really excited about this project and cannot wait to share my progress with you all.
For now, I have organized all of the product into two trays that I can take with me to the crop as well as use when I am home. The trays will be placed on a shelf in my craft room where they can be easily accessed as well as put away as I work on the book.
I hope you all enjoy the season and the delight of creating such a special project that can be enjoyed for years to come.
Sabrina | Using my Document December 2019 Kit this year, I decided to create two separate mini album projects that I’ve had on my mind for a while, but have never got around to! One of the projects is documenting our Elf on the Shelf elves. My family has two: Melvin and Matilda, and I wanted to document their adventures in 2017. I decided to create a 3″ x 4″ album with some chipboard that I had left over. I then hole punched the top of the photos and the cards at the papers to bring the album together.
Overall this album is a pretty simple, but it was a fun album to put together! I use lots of stickers and layers and tags to bring it together. I’ll also included some journaling on a few of the photos using labels and the stamps as prompts.
For my second project I decided to create a favorite ornaments 4″ x 6″ album. On the cover I stamped the word “Faves” using the Candy Cane Large Jane Alphabet Stamp and the Large Jane Alphabet Stamp Outline to outline the letters. I cut those letters and decorated the cover with some diecuts and an acrylic star for the tree.
I started with an ornament from 2008, using a 3″ x 4″ tag from the Document December 2019 Kit to write the story that goes along with the ornament. I plan on adding to this album all through December!
To organize my Document December supplies, I used a IKEA plastic organizer with divided sections. They are inexpensive and I use them to organize a lot of things in my craft room. I have one section for acrylics and diecuts. The two big sections hold all the stickers and the 6″ x 8″ papers plus the Document December stamps.
Supplies | Document December 2019 Kit, December Date Label Stickers — Green, Good Cheer Acetate Die Cuts, Red Dipped Puffy Alphabet Stickers, Christmas Multi Color Puffy Alphabet Stickers, Holiday Words Stamp, Candy Cane Large Jane Alphabet Stamp, Large Jane Alphabet Stamp Outline
Melissa | Hello, friends! This is Melissa with you and I’m so excited to be using the Document December 2019 Kit and extras to capture the magical holiday season.
This year, I am using a 6″ x 8″ album with a variety of different page protectors. I created my opening page for my album using a 3″ x 8″ page protector and cut down one of the patterned papers included in the kit. I punched three circles in the paper and backed the negative space with solid red paper.
I used my sewing machine to stitch the circles in place, then placed two ornament die-cuts in the top and bottom circles and used the number puffy stickers from the Document December Kit to place the number “25” in the middle circle.
On the other side of this page, I typed up a portion of the poem “A Visit from St. Nicholas” onto vellum, which I layered over the striped pattern paper from the Document December Kit. I’m going to use the December calendar on the next page and will probably embellish it with some stamping and puffy stickers!
I typically don’t follow a set day-by-day schedule for my albums, but instead I choose to document memorable moments, actions, special baking, and other things that make the month of December a magical experience! Have fun setting up your project this month!
Wow, those were some great ideas, right? We hope you will use them to start prepping for your Document December project—whatever form that may look like! Stay tuned for more December inspiration coming your way next week, when four more design team members will share their ideas for how to make this the best December project yet!