Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Happy National Scrapbook Month with Guest Designer Elissa Mantalas

Welcome this month's Guest Designer, Elissa Mantalas! What struck us about Elissa's scrapbooking was her ability to always tell her family's story. Whether she is doing a simple Project Life layout or a traditional 12x12 page, she is always using everyday photos of her family that we have either on our camera's or printed out at home already! She shows how easy memory keeping can be with a busy schedule as a mom, wife, and homemaker

How long have you been crafting?

In 2001, I wanted to create a scrapbook for my best friend’s wedding.  I had another friend who scrapbooked and she helped me create the scrapbook for my friend’s wedding.  After that, I scrapbooked on and off for the next two years.  When my son was 18 months old, I decided to make him a scrapbook of his first year – this was in the summer of 2007.  This time, I went to the local scrapbook store and fell in love with the assortment of all the different scrapbook supplies.  At that point, I started to learn everything I could about the more modern way of scrapbooking.  I discovered the different scrapbooking manufactures, I went onto scrapbook message boards and started following blogs of the “celebrity” scrapbookers.

What inspires you to be creative?

I find most my inspiration from patterned paper and the product themselves.  I love to pick out a piece of paper that I want to build a page around and mix and match supplies to create my layout.  I also find inspiration from challenges.  I will either use a challenge from a blog or message board.  Sometimes I will create challenges for myself – I have a jar of different techniques, products or color combinations, and I I will randomly draw two or three things from the jar that will be my challenge to create a layout around   Lastly, I will use layouts that I love (and have pinned to Pinterest) as a starting point for inspiration.  I will either scrap-lift the layout almost completely, to using the basic sketch of the layout or some of my favorite elements from the layout on my own page.

What Craft Warehouse products do you love to use?

My favorite product to shop for at Craft Warehouse is patterned paper.  I often say that I scrapbook so that I can buy patterned paper!  When I go to Craft Warehouse, I head straight for all the newest releases in the scrapbooking section.  Some of the other products I shop for at Craft Warehouse are embellishments – specifically brads, stamps, embossing powder, mists and punches.  I also like to for items that I can use for diy home décor pieces – usually canvas or wood pieces because I like to decorate my home with art that I’ve created.

How can you encourage others reading this column?

The number one thing I would say to someone who wants to start scrapbooking is to just start.  Don’t worry about “catching up” because you will never be caught up.  Scrapbook the pictures you like first.  You don’t have to scrapbook in order if you don’t want to.  If you find that you’re feeling pressure or some sort of responsibility that you ‘have’ to do this or you ‘have’ to do that, then scrapbooking won’t be fun.  And if it’s not fun, then the chances that you’ll continue scrapbooking are slim to none.  So if you want to continue scrapbooking – to preserve your family’s memories or because you like doing it or whatever other reason inspires you to scrapbook then don’t put pressure on yourself to follow a set of rules that don’t really exist.

You can also enter to win prizes the entire month of May on Instagram! This is how to play:

1. Take a photo in Instagram while you are in Craft Warehouse anytime during the month of May (no purchase necessary).

2. Tag your photo by typing "@craftwarehouse" and "#craftwarehouse" so we can see your photo!

3. Each time you post a photo between May 1st - May 30th and tag us, you can be entered to win prizes!

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