Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Year in Review Layout

Hello and welcome! The first day of a new year, hopefully a very good year. We are not having a challenge this week at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog, but the team is still posting inspiration. On Monday we'll be back with a normal challenge again.
The theme for the inspiration for today is to use old favourite supplies. I combined a bunch of old favourite products on this layout. I like to do year in review layouts, and sometimes also mini-books, at the end of a year. I picked out several older Hero Arts stamps to build a Birch forest for us to sit in and reflect on the year 2013. Making scenes are another favourite thing of mine.

I used Ranger's Specialty Stamping paper for the background, you can get a similar effect with glossy cardstock, I was just in the mood for matte this day. The Hero Arts Tree Trunks stamp was clear embossed repeatedly to create the Birch forest. When I started stamping over ten years ago, some of the very first ink pads that I got were Ranger's Adirondack dye inks. I still love them and they are my most used inks for scenic stamping. The Adirondack dye inks come in a large range of colours.

When building up layers of dye ink, start with the lightest shade and gradually build up colour, since dye inks are transparent. It is also easier to get a smooth application of darker inks if there is a lighter ink underneath. The Adirondack Lights dye inks are perfect for that first layer. I used a Colorbox Stylus Tool for the inking, which is what I normally use for my scenic stamping. You can use other ink-blending tools too. For a tutorial on scenic stamping colouring with dye inks have a look at this post. I used Slate and a Ranger craft nib, to colour the grey on the trunks. The tree die cuts are from Simon Says Stamp, Tall and Small Forest Tree, love the thin branches.

The darkest inks were applied only at the top of the sky and at the bottom of the grassy area. I wanted more texture and splattered the scene with water, a technique that works great on Specialty Stamping paper. The hearts and word die cuts are from Simon Says Stamp, this 'happy' one is a favourite of mine.

The grass was stamped with one of my most used script stamps, Old Letter Writing from Hero Arts, for a tone-on-tone effect. To add more detail to the grass, I also stamped it with the Fabulous Flourish, using Archival Fern Green ink. To give us a place to sit, cheese cloth was dyed with the same green Adirondack inks as used on the background.

I love bird stamps and this set of three from Hero Arts is so sweet. They were stamped on Specialty Stamping paper and coloured with the same blue inks as used for the sky, with a craft nib. The calendar stamp was stamped with Stonewashed and the title was die cut with the Word Play die.

I wish I had one of these little birds on my shoulder in real life!
For the journaling, I used one of my favourite dies, the Sizzix Tag & Bookplate and die cut six tags from white paper. The months were stamped on the tags, one for each side. The crinkle ribbon was dyed with the green inks used on the scene. I hadn't written the journaling yet when I took this photo, but it is a short summary of each month of the year.

Even though there isn't a challenge this week, you can of course still go shopping at Simon Says Stamp.

Thank you for the visit! I hope you will all have a very inky and stampy year 2014!! And lots of fun!


Surfaces: Ranger Specialty Stamping Paper
Stamps: Hero Arts: Tree Trunks S5477, Bird Trio LP139, Fabulous Florish S5449, Old Letter Writing S4878, Calendar D5791, Months 331485
Ink: Ranger Adirondack dye ink: Aqua, Stonewashed, Denim, Willow, Lettuce, Pesto, Salmon, Mountain Rose, Slate, Meadow; Archival Ink: Fern Green; Tsukineko: Versamark
Embossing powder: Ranger Clear
Dies: Simon Says Stamp: Tall Forest Tree, Small Forest Tree, Mini Hearts Set, Happy, Life, Family, Love; Sizzix: Word Play, Tag & Bookplates
Tools: Sizzix: Big Shot, Magnetic Platform; Colorbox Stylus Tool; Ranger Craft Nib
Embellishments: Tim Holtz: Crinkle Ribbon


  1. It is always a pleasure to visit your blog, and to see your beautiful creations!
    Happy 2014!

  2. more gorgeousness - thanks for showing us again! Hugs Rachel x

  3. Beautiful!
    Happy New Year and all the best to you and your family!

  4. What a fun layout, Anna-Karin! Love the tags with all the months. What a sweet picture! Happy New Year to you too! Hugs, Sandra

  5. Gorgeous, natural, wintry colours... an absolutely beautiful layout... and I love the calendar tags!
    Happy New Year!
    Alison xx

  6. Wow Anna-Karin! What a stunning layout! Love the beautiful background and sweet birds! Thanks for the inspiration! Hope you have a Happy New Year!

  7. gorgeous~have an awesome 2014 year!!!

  8. Happy New Year!
    Love your work - thanks for the ink tips.
    Sandra ltb

  9. I love how you blend your scrapbooking into your projects. This is beautiful and a lovely idea! Wishing you and yours a healthy, happy and creative New Year!

  10. This is just amazing Anna-Karin... have made a note to come back to this one when I get back to my studio. I love these scenes and I think it is something I could get into.... Happy New Year....

  11.'ve done it again! I always love your projects and this one is no exception. I love the idea behind the journaling tags tucked inside of that gorgeous cover. The trees are so cool and the white against the blue is such a pretty contrast. I love the cheesecloth "ground" that you have placed yourself and your son in. That is such a cool idea and adds so much texture! You are so talented, Anna-Karin. Thanks for all of your inspiration and sharing how you create such lovely pieces. Blessings to you and your family in 2014. <3 Candy

  12. the trees, and tag idea! Fab photo too! I love your favorites post too! Happy new year to you, and may it bring you many blessings of health and happiness!

  13. Hi Anna-Karin , fantastic layout! I absolutely love how you have set the scene. The tags tucked in behind is a lovely idea. The cheesecloth is a fantastic addition . Gorgeous. Happy New Year. Tracy x

  14. I love your project! What wonderful elements. I love the cute picture too!

  15. This is delightful especially those sweet birds and also I love the trees.

  16. Love your beautiful layout, Anna-Karin. It's such a brilliant idea to arrange those tags and I love your great photo, too. :)

  17. Happy new year!!!! This Layout is fabulous, the background is totally stunning!! barbarayaya

  18. I absolutely love everything about this piece! The dimension you added with the dyed cheesecloth is brilliant and I adore how you inset the picture! This piece is really inspiring and is a gorgeous tribute to 2013! So inspiring and I can't wait to see what you've got in store for 2014!


Thank you so much for leaving a comment! Happy Crafting!