I’ve added a couple of new items to my shop today for the February BYOC. Love is in the air this month. :: eyebrow wiggle ::
My new Crazy For You papers and elements are excellent for highlighting the people you love in your scrapbook pages – that goes without saying. Also? Equally perfect for proclaiming your love for a caramel macchiato, or your new camera (oh how I do so love my new camera!). This month’s awesome mix of colors is perfect for boys, girls, coffee, cameras, a new pair of shoes, Ryan Gossling – there’s no limit to how smitten you can get.
The exception being a restraining order. A restraining order would be a hard limit on how smitten you can get. (I’m looking at you, Ryan Gossling!)
For now, prepare to fall deeply in love with these new additions. The foxes are so cute, can you stand it?
Save 20% On These New Releases
All of the products in the February BYOC line are on sale, with additional Buy More, Save More discounts of up to an additional 30% off. Sale ends 02/04/2012.
|| LAYOUTS BY THE FLOCK & THE POLLYS ||
An infographic is a visually engaging way to display lots of data and Nicholas Felton is the king of turning his day to day life into gorgeous infographics and even developed a social network for tracking the day to day data of our lives.
I love his annual reports but I haven’t been meticulously recording the details of my life. So I used a combination of social media, creative displays and good old-fashioned guesswork to make my infographic inspired layout.
Here are the basic steps for making your own infographic inspired year in review layout.
FIGURE OUT WHAT YOU WANT TO HIGHLIGHT
A good infographic tells a story. What are the highlights of your past year that you want to highlight in your layout?
For me, this would be the birth of our first baby, the trip we took to Alabama, my weird pregnancy habits and my growing obsession with digital scrapbooking.
COLLECT THE DATA
Once you know what you want to highlight, you’ll need to collect data that relates to those stories. I knew that I wanted to include the states we visited in 2012, so I started looking for some way to visually represent those states. I found this wonderful free font Stateface by ProPublica that includes the shape of every state in the US.
The data for the birth of my son was pretty easy to come by, since I could include the date, time, his length, and weight. You might want to think about more unusual data to include as well, like hours of labor or the number of hospital visitors. Think about the important events of your year and what details you could count or measure that are related to them.
My pregnancy with Isaac involved a lot of Taco Bell visits and I wanted to capture that in my layout. Thankfully, my husband is a meticulous tracker of our spending habits, so I could use our financial software to find the number of times we went to Taco Bell. If you’re not tracking your spending, you might be able to use an online app like Mint to go back and pull out similar data from your bank account.
Mostly because I wanted to use Peppermint’s awesome word art, I sought out a way to include how many tweets I tweeted last year, as well as how many emails I sent and received.
Layouts scrapped was easy enough for me, since I upload all of mine to a set on Flickr, so I just had to count how many were from last year. A trip through your favorite gallery or a quick look on your hard drive can settle this one for you.
WHEN IN DOUBT…ESTIMATE
When you have a new baby in the house, you deal with a lot of diapers and this was something I wanted to capture in my layout. Of course, I haven’t bothered to take the time to count every diaper as it’s gone in the washer, so I needed a different way to come up with this number. I wouldn’t recommend this if you want a super accurate infographic, but since this infographic is for entertainment purposes I say go for it!
To get my diaper number, I started with a number I was certain of. We have about 20 cloth diapers and we have to wash them every other day. We didn’t use our cloth diapers until July, so that’s 6 months of washing 20 cloth diapers every other day. There’s about 30 days in a month, so my math looked like this:
((6*30)/2)*20 = 1800
1800 diapers! Using a daily average you know is a great way to capture a daily routine that can’t be easily tracked otherwise.
An infographic is a great way to capture the daily routines that might otherwise not be documented in your scrapbooking. I certainly don’t want to scrap a photo of Isaac’s dirty diapers, but washing them has been a significant part of my daily routine over the past year. Documenting the number is a great way for me to include this portion of our life into the family album.
The In Review Elements include a few data-ready elements to start with for a year in review infographic. Here are some other possibilities to capture your year:
- trips taken
- new foods tried
- cups of coffee drank
- pairs of shoes bought
- miles run
- friends who visited/friends visited
- concerts attended
- stitches crocheted/knitted/sewn
- apps purchased
- thank you cards sent/not sent
- doodles drawn
- notebooks filled
- hugs/kisses given
- candles lit
- times cmd/ctrl+z pressed
Remember, you don’t have to have an exact number to document it in your infographic! Sometimes even a funny response (like “a gajillion times”) is exactly what’s needed to get your point across.
Have fun documenting your year in numbers. If you do decide to make an infographic inspired layout or if you’ve made one in the past, we would love to see it. Be sure to link us up to it in the comments!
Who’s doing Project Life? Raise your hand. Go on, I’ll wait! This is my second year doing Project Life and my approach is a little different than most.
When I first started, I was all about maintaining the conventional approach of documenting one week at a time – and I actually kept it up for about 5 months.
If you absolutely, anal-retentively (oh, is that a word?) cannot stand to have your pages with different weeks in them then this is the way to go – and I suggest you find stuff every week for every pocket.
For example, in this week I added television shows that we watch around here, a section of a program that my boys went to, books I’m reading. You know…. the stuff of everyday life. Looks good, doesn’t it?
Then life started gettin’ real! And now I will freely admit that I don’t always take a picture or write journaling for every day of the week. I didn’t intend to loosen my approach, but it happened over time and I didn’t even care. I would look through my pictures and ask myself:
- Do I have enough pictures to cover one specific event?
- Do I have enough pictures to do a layout about one week?
- Do I have enough pictures to review an entire month at one time?
- Do I have enough pictures to review several weeks at one time?
I let the photos decide.
A MORE ORGANIC APPROACH
Below you can see an example where I’ve documented almost an entire month’s worth of photographs. It makes it more flexible.
I found that by not worrying about whether I had enough pictures for the week – or even that I took a picture everyday – I took more meaningful pictures than I would normally take and I let go of the stuff that I really didn’t care about documenting. I didn’t want to struggle every day with what to take a picture of. I really wanted it to be organic.
I’ve made 2 page spreads covering a month of time, 6 weeks of time or even a specific event, like our vacation to California.
I allow my album to be very loose. I will definitely scrap regular layouts for our trip, but the pocket page format lets me easily add in memorabilia along with my pictures to show an overview of our vacation. This is where Project Life really excels: I would have struggled forever trying to add all this cool stuff to a layout.
For my son, Nolan’s, birthday I did a whole page just for him. And you know what? I love this page.
My in-laws took our son on a cross-country drive to California and were cool enough to journal about it. (Yeah, my mother-in-law really is the best.)
When all was said and done I added all of Nolan’s postcards and pictures from his disposable camera into the pockets and just tossed her journaling in an 8.5×11 page protector. No need to rewrite all the stuff! Easy, guys. Make this easy!
I found Project Life to be the best place to put all the “stuff” of life. I have my son’s report cards in there. I have his basketball medal in there. I have some of his artwork and even some of his school work in there. If you are not doing the whole tooth fairy thing, this could even be a good place to put those teeth if you’re the type to keep them.
I found myself hem-hawing about December Daily. I have done several mini books in the past and was really digging my free-form Project Life approach. I’ve always had issues with the design aspect of the December Daily, so I finally decided to incorporate it into my Project Life album.
Like the second half of my year I let it flow very organically. Some weeks I had the traditional 7 photos for the week, while another spread covers the span of 2 weeks. I used great little number badges to label the dates of the pictures, wrote some journaling and called it great. Easiest December Daily ever!
My advice for those that are working on Project Life this year is this: Try not to get caught up on the photo-a-day.
It really doesn’t have to be this way. I pinkie swear! Take pictures, put them in the pockets, write some words down and see what happens.
Don’t give up if you start out with a photo-a-day just to fizzle out to a handful a week. Throw those puppies in there and just write the dates that those photos cover on the “title card.” You will be amazed at the end of the year with what you have.
Nothing offers reassurance the way a day planner can. It lets you know what lies ahead in the day and keeps you on track. And nothing beats the sense of accomplishment you get when you look back at the end of the day and see how many things you have ticked off, achieved, and completed.
I waffle back and forth between electronic and paper planners. I’ve been predominantly electronic for the past couple of years, but this year I opted for a beautiful little paper number by Laurel Denise that I leave laying out on my desk. I just felt like writing this year, and this planner is so classic and elegant that I find myself smiling every time I write in it.
On that note, I’m excited to announce the arrival of my latest collab with Paislee Press. Dayplanner and the coordinating Dayplanner Journal Cards are perfect for documenting big milestones or the everyday wins in your life. To say that I am totally in love with it is an understatement. I love working with Liz, and I always love the results. ♥
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