Mini Albums

#Finish-it-February

On February 1st I was scrolling my newsfeed on Facebook and came across a post in the Scrap Gals Community Facebook Group on the tradition of using the month of February to finish several of the projects that you just never got around to completing! It made me think about some of the pitfalls for completing projects that often affect me.

  1. By the time I come across an unfinished project, I have no enthusiasm for the project anymore.
  2. Other events or pictures have eclipsed those memories in importance
  3. Sometimes I don’t like the products I was using at the time (even though I thought they were perfect at one time!)
  4. I’m just not into whatever style or media I was using when I started.
  5. I have new products calling me to use them right away.
  6.  I am afraid to “waste”  what little time I have to scrapbook on an old project when I have current stories and photos to document.

Do you relate to any of these pitfalls? I think that the idea of setting aside one whole month to go back to my unfinished projects would possibly help me to finish at least some of them, and in the process rid me of some of the guilt of “wasting” supplies, and my past time and energy. I may not be able to finish everything I want to finish (I have the 3 past years of unfinished December dailies and if I am honest I have been putting these off for- well- 3 years.) But I can do what I can for one short month, and let the chips fall where they may. Right?

I really love to travel, and when a photo album I had of a trip I took to India was destroyed (in the pre-digital photo days) I cried over the loss of those photos and memories. So for me, this month is going to start with finishing some travel journals that are really important to me. I am happy to announce that I did it! I finished the TN insert of my trip to Thailand last September! One down and…never mind how many to go.

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Here is the short list of Clique Kits products I used in this journal. I love that Clique Kits is now offering Limited Edition Traveler Notebook kits. I hope that at some point there will be enough demand for a full TN subscription kit.

  1. The Cosmo Cricket Art Deck. This is a booklet, the same size as a TN insert full of pretty sayings hand script with trendy designs as resist patterns on watercolor paper, along with some gold foiled designs.
  2. Assortment of Washi Tapes
  3. My goes-everywhere-with-me box of Prima watercolor paints and a waterbrush. (no link because they are sold out- but I imagine they are available other places!?)
  4. A bunch of skeleton clips like the ones visible in some of the photos. These are a must for using anything wet while on the go since you need a way to keep your pages open to dry.
  5. The travel stamp set by Meli Melo studio that Clique Kits sells, which is perfect for stamping in your TN!
  6. This lovely butterfly stamp.

A couple of things to note before I conclude this post.  This was my first attempt at working in the Traveler Notebook insert formula and there was a little bit of a learning curve for me. First, I am used to working with wet media on cold press watercolor paper or at least mixed media weight paper. I learned that the paper in the average TN insert is quite thin, and I figured out halfway through the project that it was better to paste two pages together than to try to use them singly when using anything wet on them. So yeah, the front half is full of wrinkled, flimsy pages and the second half is much more sturdy and lays flat.

I loved adding little bits of memorabilia to the album, like this 20 baht note (Thai currency). There is a story behind this particular note- and now I will never forget it!

I used this project as an opportunity to practice some brush stroke lettering, without pressure because my lettering was not perfect and I was totally okay with that! (unlike how I would feel if it were on a scrapbook layout) I am now enamored with traveler notebooks and whatever the trip or subject, I know they will be very personal to me and something that I love to look back through in the future. I also plan to work on an archiving system for them for when they are finished and end up on my shelf. There is much to talk about with Traveler Notebooks that I will save for future posts!

I would love to hear from you if you have any unfinished projects to work on during #Finish-it-February and what some of your pitfalls are to getting them done. Maybe we can help each other!

-xoGia

 

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Mojo Monday

 

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Aloha! I just realized that almost 2 months have gone by and I still have not posted about one of the craft and hobby industry’s biggest source of mojo! The CHA winter show was held for the last time ever in Anaheim, California this year from January 8-13th. This year the entire Clique Kits leadership team was able to attend, which was even more inspiring since we were able to combine our own company retreat with the industry’s largest trade show. What was even more inspiring to me than seeing all of the new products and all of the “celebrities” was just hanging out with and watching the Clique Kits leadership team in action! We have evolved into a well oiled machine over the past two years, and yet still continue to grow and improve!

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Here we are approaching the Anaheim Convention Center to get registered and then head out to Disneyland, California for some food, drinks, and heart to heart discussion of our progress and goals as individuals and as a company! Some people may not realize that the Clique Kits founders and leadership team work together from many different zip codes and time zones. How is that possible? We use the internet of course and video teleconferencing technology. So meeting up face to face to is a once a year opportunity!

 

One of the things I love about working with a team of girl bosses is that we started the company with the intention to empower each other, not have power over each other. Like any good team, with each player in the role where their strengths are used to the team advantage, everyone thrives! Sometimes stressful situations can pull even the best of friends apart. Basic tenets of communication and preventive maintenance are key in this situation. Some of the things the CK girls do to maximize team work are:

  1. Chat every day in our Clique Kits leadership chat group!
  2. Meet regularly starting with a monthly “check-in” just to update each other on life outside of the company!
  3. Back each other up. We are each able to step up to fill in for each other in any task if needed to help each other when we need to step away “offline” for family or personal situations. We give each other breaks-whenever asked!
  4. Communicate effectively. We know how to give and take constructive criticism. We are able to express ourselves freely with no fear of retribution. If anyone finds anyone else hard to take, we don’t ignore it. We clear the air right away!

Here we are at Downtown Disney- yummy macaroons for dessert!

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Back at our hotel suite-we had two adjoining rooms for the 5 of us. Sandy was our special guest as a design team member she was able to shoot lots of video for the Clique Kits and her personal You Tube channel covering the sights and activities we shared at CHA! Every night was basically a slumber party- we stocked the room with food & drinks and talked into the night making plans and going over the day’s events.

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Nicole took this picture of me because I have been kind of obsessed with Zebras lately. LOL

Echo Park company had a map to pin an Instax picture to your location on- I also loved this collection of all of the states-especially my favorite state- Hawaii.

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It was really neat to see the Altenew booth again-this year doubled in size! Last year we were so excited to order the stamp set we included in our Clique Cards Spring Edition 2015 and got to see the cards the Altenew owner created with the kit which featured the first My Mind’s Eye On Trend collection by Jen Allyson. We decided to do an encore performance and order the second On Trend (On Trend 2) for Clique Cards: Spring 2016 which is on sale now for pre-order! This time, we found another cute stamp from Hero Arts that coordinates with it perfectly! There are also NEW Altenew stamps available in the Clique Kits store, along with the amazing inks we tried out ourselves, and highly recommend for crisp,clean stamping perfection! (Ugh so many exclamation points- but I can’t help it.)

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Another product we will be bringing to The Clique this summer- possibly alone or in a kit, are these really cool watercolor powders which contain a mixture of colors by Cosmo Cricket. They were super fun to play with giving a multitude of cool effects!

Recently the Clique Kits leaders have opened up a heart to heart discussion about heading in a direction away from doing business with large monopoly corporations in the industry, and moving in a direction favoring working mostly with smaller companies with whom we have built trusting, mutually rewarding relationships in our first two years of business. We realize this is a major step, and may disappoint certain people who continue to covet the products controlled by certain conglomerates. On the other hand, with these products widely available elsewhere, skipping over them for Clique Kits would enable us to focus more on exclusive products, and again, allow us to network with and nurture our relationships with smaller companies and newer start up companies we could easily overlook otherwise. This is not to say we wish to boycott, or in any way put down large corporations in the craft and hobby industry. It is simply the topic of discussion and the Clique Kits leadership team is interested in hearing what other think. Clique Kits is still and always will be committed to supporting small businesses, indie artists (Etsy and handmade items,etc) and huge fans of fair trade sourcing products that give back to communities around the world! I would love to hear of sources to check out-so please feel free to make recommendations and comments!

-xo Gia

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