Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Heat Is On!

Summer has definitely arrived early in the South this year!  We are already reaching temperatures of 98 degrees...and it's only May!!  UGH!!  Believe me when I say, that I am not looking forward to July!  But, we do have at least one compensation...water play!  Whether it's the sprinkler in the backyard, heading to the pool, or making the short drive to the beach, water play is about the only way to survive through Summer.  And even better than those three options, is the Splash Pad located in the center of our outdoor mall, which is about 2 minutes away from our house.  The kids LOVE it, and so do I!  They can run around and play, while I get to sit in the shade of the huge umbrellas and enjoy watching them have fun.

We took the kids over during the afternoon last week and it was the first trip of the Summer.  I snapped a couple of pics on my phone, because it was just one of those outings where I didn't feel like dragging my camera along.  I just snapped a few photos of each of the kids...because I have definitely accumulated plenty of Splash Pad photos over the past six years!  When I printed these pictures, I immediately knew I wanted to use my brand, spanking new Simple Stories Summer Fresh collection for this layout.  I really am in love with this line and here is what I created with it:




 
I really love the way Simple Stories manufactures their paper lines.  Each collection contains full 12x12 patterned sheets, along with full sheets that are broken down into 4x6, 6x8, 4x4, 2x12, 4x12, and 6x12 sizes.  These are so perfect for cutting border strips or journaling areas for your layouts.  You can also cut individual elements and words from the cut-apart element pieces.  I used these pieces for the title on my layout.  The words "This" and "Summer" were both fussy cut from the cut-apart element pieces, and then I just added some foam squares for dimension and a little bit of stitching for extra texture and emphasis.


My starting point for this layout came from the Recipe Challenge hosted at Club CK.  Recipe Challenges are one of my favorite type of challenges.  It's a little bit of this and that, but it still gives you the freedom to create and design any type of layout you wish to create.  For this challenge, CK came up with:  three 4x6 photos, both black & white, multi-layered embellishments, a list, and at least one ticket or ticket shape.  When I decided to use the Simple Stories line, I was a little stumped at first on how to incorporate the black & white.  But then I remembered my awesome roll of SMASH tape and thought it would make a perfect border for the top and bottom of my photos.  I love the contrast it adds and brings your eye to the photos.  I also decided to have a little fun with the sun pattern at the top of the layout.  For the center, I used my multi-layered embellishment and then used some baker's twine to outline each of the separations between the "ray" patterns.

And if all of this wasn't enough, I decided to incorporate the "thought" from thinking*through*design, which was to use hand stitching.  I am a big fan of stitching on my layouts.  I love how it adds texture and a fun element to your layouts.  You can hand draw your title and stitch over it, stitch through your title, stitch around an embellishment, stitch flourishes on your layout...etc., etc., etc.  The possibilities are endless.

Thanks for stopping by today...this week is flying by and the weekend will be here before we know it!  And just an FYI, I added two new buttons to my Blog.  You can follow me on Twitter or Pinterest!!

Products Used:  Patterned Paper & Stickers:  Simple Stories; SMASH Tape:  K&Company; Baker's Twine:  The Twinery; Button:  Dill Buttons; Embroidery Floss:  Janlynn
 

12 comments:

Andrea said...

awesome! I Love the starburst most!

Missy Whidden said...

Gorgeous!! I love this line, too, Ashley...I'm working with right now for one of my DTs. I find myself sitting and staring at all the papers...not wanting to cut any of it! It's all so gorgeous. I love how you used the sunburst, and the stitching is the perfect touch! Great pics, too!

Laurie LaRiviere said...

this is a cute line, love the colors and that flower/sun design at the top! wow!! this is a really fun summer layout, love it!

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

This is AWESOME!! I love love love the photos, the rays and LOVING that title!!!!

Mindy Bobe said...

LOVE this!!! Another fantastic layout!!!

Sindi J said...

Beautiful! I love the sun rays, they have beautiful dimension. :)

Moongirl said...

I really love the way you incorporated the sun rays into the design and the stitching really helps them stand out. I also love the twine wrapped around the letter in the title! Thank for you thoughts on stitching.

Diana Waite said...

this layout is just BEAUTIFUL! GREAT pictures and I love the rays behind the sun!

Angela said...

You blew these challenges out of the water! (No pun intended.. ) I too am loving this new line and can't wait to do something fun it like you did. I really love all your stitching on the sun! And the twine too! It appears to be pieced together and it is beautiful!

Lynn said...

The photos are just too cute and I love how you put this layout together. The paper strips..awesome. Your title..cute as ever and all the little details..fabulous!

Jennifer said...

A stunning LO! Love the starburst. I keep saying I am going to try this. Love the summery feel of the patterned papers too. Oooh, that is way too hot for me. I think I would melt into a puddle. I don't like it any hotter than 25c so I guess I best stay in the north. ;)

Debbie said...

Love it!!! A fav for sure!!! I need to give the "ray" effect a try. I've seen a lot of it lately and I think it looks great on your layout! I just got my DT kit from Artful Delight that is packed with the Simple Stories papers in it. Can't wait to work with them!