Tag Archives: Carolyn’s Stamp Store

Using My Sketchbook as a Planner

Last night I listened to a really fun and informative podcast by The Scrap Gals on the topic of Memory Planners – using a  planner to help stay organized and also save as a scrapbook-like keepsake with photos, decorative papers and all kinds of other fun things that we associate with scrapbooking. I’ve saved old planners or calendars on occasion because the records in them really bring back vivid memories. Memory planners are a really great idea but I don’t anticipate having the kind of time to exploit the idea to the fullest.

One idea on the podcast that really had me intrigued was the idea of combining an art journal with a planner. This got me thinking. I have kept sketchbooks since 1985 and I’ve saved all of them. They have a lot of thumbnail sketches and notes about future projects in them, and occasionally other things that get in there because it’s the handiest blank paper around – supply lists, to-do lists, hours that I’ve worked for various clients to be transferred to electronic records later, web site notes, class notes, things like that.

A sketchbook could incorporate aspects of a planner. I have rubber stamps in my Carolyn’s Stamp Store collection with months, years, and days of the week – designed for memory crafts, but adaptable for making a planner too. I also have several sets of letter and number rubber stamps and stencils from other companies, some are even vintage. Along with my rubber stamps, I got out a pencil and ruler and started playing around with page layouts.

First page layout experiment - two weeks per page
First page layout experiment – two weeks per page

I used the wall calendar that I keep in my office as a reference and filled in the first two weeks. On this first attempt I tried to include 14 days per 8.5 x 11 inch sketchbook page.  Some good things were happening, but I decided that I needed more room for each day. As a result I came up with this second layout:

One week per page with To Do list on the side
One week per page with To Do list on the side

This is the layout I’m going to stick with for awhile.  The month, day and year stamps are from my own Carolyn’s Stamp Store. The large numbers are from ‘Lil Davis Designs and the pointing hand and ruled lines stamp are from 7gypsies. A page like this is quick to throw together. My stamping got a little sloppy there on the numbers but this is pretty much for my eyes only so it’s not a big deal. My plan is to add a new week as needed wherever the next blank page happens to fall in my sketchbook. I’ll write in things like work schedules and appointments and also make a brief note about what I did that day. I went through my rubber stamp collection and picked out ones I thought suitable for journaling and put them all together in a bin with the inks I used on this page so they’ll be handy when I need them.

I’m looking forward to this new way of getting organized and recording my activities. When this sketchbook is full, I may switch to a 3-ring binder and put 8.5 x 11 inch sheets of drawing paper in it, with the flexibility of adding additional pages wherever I want of any kind of paper or cardstock if I want to expand the memory aspect of the planner/sketchbook combo.

PearlEx Clay Beads

Make Polymer Clay disc beads with PearlEx Powders

Polymer clay beads made with PearlEx Chromatic Colors by Jacquard Products.
Polymer clay beads made with PearlEx Chromatic Colors by Jacquard Products.

Normally when I’m planning a new craft project, I try not to be too influenced by trends. The new Pearl Ex Chromatic colors however seem to be in harmony with some things going on in the world of fashion, so I decided that bead-making would be a great application for these bold new colors. Bright jewel and metallic tones are perfect for jewelry!

Pearl Ex Powdered Pigments are a versatile pearlized powder that can be added to nearly any artist medium. They need to be mixed with or coated with some kind of binder for permanence. In this project we’ll be rolling the beads in the powder to apply it to the surface of the beads, and then sealing the surface with PearlEx Varnish.

Read the rest of this tutorial here – PearlEx Clay Beads

Buy PearlEx at Carolyn’s Stamp Store!

Examples of jewelry made with my PearlEx beads:

Necklace With Metallic Apple Green Beads made with PearlEx powder.Necklace With Metallic Apple Green Beads
26 inch necklace with clasp with 2 inch wide beaded pendant sporting a 3 ¾ inch silver colored chain tassel. Beads on pendant are made of polymer clay with a Pearl Ex powder coating, sealed with varnish. Chain and findings are recycled from thrift store jewelry.

Necklace With Metallic Sapphire Blue Beads made with PearlEx powders.Necklace With Metallic Sapphire Blue Beads
56 1/4 inch necklace with four segments of metallic blue and gold beads on wire. No clasp, can wear as one long strand like a “flapper” necklace or double the strand. Blue rondelle beads are made of polymer clay with a Pearl Ex powder coating, sealed with varnish. Gold color chain is recycled from thrift store jewelry.