Friday, December 31, 2010

New from Precocious Paper...

I thought the beginning of a new year was the perfect opportunity for a new beginning at Precocious Paper.  Introducing...Precocious Paper Samplers!

♥ A new release on the 25th of each month
♥ Samplers contain coordinated pieces of all kinds from the shop, including exclusive designs
♥ Enough embellishments for several layouts or projects
♥ Add-ons such as coordinating Sweet Spots, ribbons, and additional flowers will be available
♥ No subscription is necessary, although there will be benefits for repeat sampler-customers
♥ Design team inspiration for layouts and projects will be posted all month long

Without further ado, please welcome "Sunshine in My Soul", the Precocious Paper January Sampler:

Sampler includes:
♥ 1 Fabric and Felt Flower (from the Flower Power Bouquet, sold separately here)
♥ 1 Yo-Yo Posy (in the same Fabric as the above flower)
♥ 1 Aqua Lace and Felt Flower (exclusive to the sampler)
♥ 1 Mustard Yellow Lollipop Lace Flower (exclusive to the sampler)
♥ 1 Classic Ivory Rolled Fabric Flower (sold separately here)
♥ 1 Set of Spiral Felt Flowers in Aqua, Ivory, and Mustard Yellow (exclusive to the sampler)
♥ 1 Daffodil Dyed Cardboard Flower (sold separately here)
♥ 3 Leaves (more leaves available here)
♥ 3 Ribbon Clothespins with a Decorative Stick Pin (set exclusive to the sampler)

The sampler also coordinates with these Sweet Spots, available here:

I created this layout (for The Studio) using the January Sampler.  To see more layouts that I created with "Sunshine in My Soul," stop by the Precocious Paper Facebook Page today.  And keep your eyes peeled for design team projects soon.

If you would like to purchase the January Sampler, you can find it in my shop here.  The cost is only $13.50 plus shipping.  Quantities are limited, so you'll want to stop by soon.  And to celebrate the release, any additional items you purchase with your sampler will ship for free (I'll issue a refund via PayPal once payment is received).

Have a great New Year's Eve! Tessa

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Today is the day!  Isn't it funny how slowly Christmas comes when you are a child, but how quickly it arrives when you are an adult?  I'm grateful that I can experience the magic of this holiday through my children's eyes and spend these precious moments with those I love.

If you have a moment, there is a beautiful story in this message that will uplift and inspire you this Christmas day.  (Turn off the music player at the bottom of the page.)

From my family to yours, may your Christmas be merry and bright.  As you busily snap photos, host guests, play with the kids and all the other happy things we do on Christmas, may you remember our Savior, Jesus Christ.  How grateful I am that He so humbly came to earth to live as a perfect example, to atone for our sins, and to die for us that we may have eternal life.  Merry Christmas, friends!

Love, Tessa

P.S. - If you're doing any scrappy blog hopping today, I'm being featured at The Paper Variety and would love for you to stop by :).

Friday, December 24, 2010

Designer Friday!

Happy Christmas Eve!  Anticipation is building here at the Buys' home and it will be just about all I can do to keep the boys from going nuts :).  Speaking of my boys, my oldest just brought breakfast to me.  Can we say last-minute brownie points?  No, he's really just a great kid, no matter what day tomorrow is :).

I have two fabulous projects to share with you today.  First, these really cute Christmas baubles from Nikki:

Using Fabric and Felt Flowers from both the Country Christmas and Christmas Bliss Bouquets, Nikki embellished simple wooden ornaments.  These decorations would be perfect hung on the tree or strung on pretty wire - I'm adding this idea to next year's list of Christmas things to do.

Rebekah created a gorgeous layout about decorating her tree, and my favorite part is the color.  Rebekah says, "I love purple as a Christmas colour and everything in my house is usually colour coordinated with that in mind. My tree, the Christmas table, the wrapping paper and you get the idea. So Tessa's gorgeous rich purple flowers really did the business on this Christmas LO."  Rebekah used the Purple Rolled Fabric Flowers.  So pretty!

Thank you, Rebekah and Nikki!  What a wonderful pair of projects for our last Designer Friday in 2010.  My Valentine's Day lines and a special new product release are coming very soon.  In the meantime, enjoy this coupon for some end of the year stash-building:  DESIGNERFRIDAY4.  10% off your merchandise total, through Sunday.

Have a wonderful, happy, and safe Christmas Eve!  Tessa

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Sketchy Thursdays SPECIAL Edition

Have you heard?  Sketchy Thursdays is taking a break from the regular blog and holding a special challenge over the holidays on Facebook!  This challenge is so special that I can't even reveal the sketch here on my blog.  You've got to go to Facebook to see it :).  I will, however, share the prize:

... and my take:

So head on over to Sketchy Thursday's Facebook page for all the details about playing along.  I hope to see you there!  Tessa

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Guest Designers Sarah and Kelly

Two fabulous ladies have been playing with Precocious Paper goodies and I'd like to share their fabulous creations!

First up, Sarah Mullanix:  Hello, my name is Sarah Mullanix and I am a stay at home mom to my 3 kids, Becca 14, Emmy 10, and Carter just turned 2.  I have been scrapbooking and paper crafting for the past 14 years and have been designing for manufacturers and online stores for the past 5 years. I love creating and rarely go a day without doing so!

"Deck The Halls", "Dcember 25th", and "Merry Christmas" Cards: Red and Green Christmas Bouquet

I'd love to receive any one of those beautiful cards!  And isn't that layout gorgeous?

Next, Kelly Hunsaker, who is a favorite fan of Precocious Paper: Hi. My name is Kelly and I live in a small mountain town in Colorado. I am a wife, a mom to a 14 year old son and an 11 year old daughter, a friend, a child of my Heavenly Father, a Girl Scout leader, and a 'retired' lawyer who is now blessed to stay home. I am a crafter, a reader, a thinker. A woman. A sentimental person and a romantic. I am strong and feminine. I yell feverishly at the TV during Broncos football and Avalanche hockey and I am in tears during every Hallmark movie. I am a dichotomy. I am nearly 48, but my body often feels like I am 60 and my mind like I am 16. I have Sustemic Lupus Cerebritis. I now wear oxygen 24/7 and often refer to my bottle of O2 as my friend Oscar. It is my way of making friends with my disease. The most difficult aspect of the disease, though, is that I am no longer allowed to drive and so I am often isolated which sometimes leads to loneliness. My online world is my lifeline. I have met lifelong friends through the various sites I follow. A few months ago I discovered the world of scrapbook blogs and became a lurker. This is my attempt to come out from behind the door and share my creativity with others. I have been a scrapbooker for years but I think I have only turned it into my art over the last few months. I enjoy cross-stitch and other forms of stitchery, I have been known to knit, and at times I create jewelery. But scrapping is my passion.

"Conquer" Layout: Apple Green and Chocolate Brown Rolled Flowers

"Glamorous" Layout: Aqua Rolled Fabric Flowers, Tulle from the Baby Boy Ribbon Set

December Daily Page: Ruby Lace and Felt Flowers

You can see close-ups and more photos of the projects above on the Precocious Paper Facebook page.   Thank you so much, Sarah and Kelly!  If these two have inspired you to create with some Christmas blooms or rolled fabric flowers, use this coupon code to receive 10% off your merchandise total, through Friday: SARAHANDKELLY.  Shop here.  Have a great day! Tessa

The Paper Variety

I have wonderful news to share today :).  I've come to the end of my term as a member of The Paper Variety's design team, but Abby and Suzanne have given me the opportunity to continue on into 2011 for another term!  I'm excited about the new prompts, the variety of challenges, and the amazing talent that I get to design with.  Go see for yourself - the new gals are amazing, as well as the other returning designers :).

Our challenges begin again in 2011, so stay tuned for some inspiring fun from The Paper Variety!  If you haven't played at this challenge site yet, you should check it out.  The people are friendly and the challenges are just what you need to spark some really great layouts and projects. 

Also, stay tuned for a special post later today.  Two guest designers have worked with a range of Precocious Paper products and I will be sharing their creations with you.

Have a wonderful day! Tessa

Monday, December 20, 2010

Organized and Inspired

Nothing kills inspiration like a mess.  Many times I have gone into the scrap room to create, only to turn around and walk out because the chaos from a previous project is still on my table.  I'm a pretty organized person, but I can easily let it all get out of control.  So when I saw this post on Emilie Handmade, I got a little excited :).

Emilie is doing a month-long series about organizing your creative space, which should lead to more inspiration (and more getting done!).  And on top of all the tutorials and fabulous information, there are prizes.  Who doesn't love prizes?  I'll be following along and I hope you will too!

Well, I had hoped to share my December Daily with you, but last night we had a major power outage and I didn't get to work on it.  The lights went out about half an hour before church was over, we quickly cooked dinner with remaining sunlight, then it was candles and flashlights until this morning.  We started the book "A Wrinkle in Time" - one of my all-time favorites - by flashlight, then made smores on the gas stove top.  The boys were restless, so we drove to Rocklin (a nearby city) to look at Christmas lights.  Check out this house - hilarious!

We live in the same town as our parents and so neither set of grandparents had power, either.  Grandmama invited us over for marshmallow roasting and we visited with Grandma Carrie to see Auntie Shanae and Uncle Andrew come into town from Idaho.  All in all, it was a very busy night and luckily not a very cold one.  The house powered up again at 6 am and the boys have been back to their DVD's and I've had my computer fix :).

I'm off to work on orders and hopefully finish up some gifts.  I hope your Monday is a good one!  Tessa

Sunday, December 19, 2010

My kinda challenge...

...for this time of year!  Amanda has set a super easy challenge for this week at The Studio:  "I know that most people are ultra busy in the run up to Christmas, so this week your challenge is to take a photo of something that puts you in a Christmassy mood! Then, once all the festivities are over, you'll be able to go back and scrap the picture at your own leisure."  Here is my photo:

To me, nothing signals the holidays like mandarin oranges. Growing up in snowy Utah, I would look forward to the boxes of mandarins that my grandparents would send at Christmastime from sunny California. Now that I live in California, I look forward to the cold weather that ripens the mandarins so that I can fill our home with the scent of oranges. Call me crazy, but I'd rather have one of these than a Christmas cookie any day!

These sweet treats reside across the street, on my in-laws' property.  If we are all out in the house, I can just walk over there and pull a few off.  What puts you in the Christmas mood?  I would love to see - just link us up over at The Studio.

Before I go, I thought I'd share a link to a really cute and easy gift idea.  My sisters may or may not receive something like this ;).  Have a great day! Tessa

Friday, December 17, 2010

Designer Friday

Happy Friday!  Amanda and Anna have some beautiful projects to share with you today.  First, Amanda created this layout using the Aqua, Butter Yellow, and Classic Ivory Rolled Fabric Flowers.

Amanda says, "I have 1 word to say about these flowers: YUM! I love the colours, the slight sheen to the fabric, everything. I love how they add such a classy look to my page with minimal effort. It's my Mum's birthday tomorrow, and I'm going to give her this page as part of her gift. I know she will just LOVE it!"  I'm sure she will, too!

Anna created this layout with the Aqua and Fuchsia Rolled Fabric Flowers.  I love how she added centers with pearls and gems:

Anna also created a gorgeous photo frame with the Pink Floral Yo-Yo Posies.  I love how she rippled the wired leaves that come with the set:

Even with this busy holiday season, Amanda and Anna have been really productive with Precocious Paper goodies and I have even more to share!  I've decided to feature their holiday creations on Facebook today, so if you don't already "like" the Precocious Paper Facebook page, please head on over and click away :).  There's a giveaway going on, too!

Thank you, Amanda and Anna, for your beautiful work!  I feel like I get Christmas morning every week when I see what the design team adds to our gallery :).  The deadline for ordering items that would arrive by Christmas has passed, but if you'd like to stock up on crafting goodies for the new year, here's a coupon code for 10% off your merchandise total, good through Sunday: DESIGNERFRIDAY3.  Have a great day!  Tessa

Thursday, December 16, 2010

My Little Rudolph

For Sketchy Thursdays this week, I finally scrapped Colten's kindergarten holiday program - albeit two years later!  I kept the design simple and was able to use up several small left over pieces from my December Scrapbook Circle Kit:

Here's the sketch:

I love that Colten keeps coming into the scrapbook room to look at his "Rudolph page" hanging on the wall.  He really likes it :).  The DT did a fabulous job (as usual) this week.  I love the variety of looks from one sketch.  You can see for yourself here.

Have a great day! Tessa

P.S. - I'm doing a giveaway on the Precocious Paper Facebook page for "likers".
P.P.S. - Scrapbook Circle and The Paper Variety have design team calls going on :).

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Paper Variety

The last challenge of 2010 is now live at The Paper Variety, and it's the cutest photo inspiration you've ever seen!

How adorable, right?  Well, we don't have any pets yet, so I took inspiration from the Santa hat and created mini envelopes for my Christmas gift tags. 

These hats are Jolee's stickers that I picked up at Target and layered over Martha Stewart decorative Christmas tape and punched cardstock.  Each one is embellished with a sewn button, a little pearl, and some baker's twine.  And if you know me, I love kraft cardstock, so I had to make the envelopes themselves out of the stuff :).

I plan to punch a hole in the corner with my Cropodile and attach these little notes with pretty ribbon.  I know scrappy time is pretty hard to come by these days, but if you get a chance, we would love to have you!

Have a great day! Tessa

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My Christmas Wreath

When you come to my house this holiday season, this greets you:

It's kind of a combination between elf socks and holly :).  I love the mint green with the dark green, and the true red makes those berries pop!  The flowers are spiraled felt and rolled taffeta (from my shop).  I smile every time I pull up in the driveway.  I love how bright, festive and happy it is.

I'm busy making wreaths as gifts this year.  I won't say for who because I might spoil the surprise, but I am working with yummy colors and lots of handmade flowers.  I will share as soon as I can :).

Have a happy day, everyone!  Tessa

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Thank You Card

The new Sunday challenge is live at The StudioThis week we challenge you to create a Thank You card. Ideally, it should be geared towards Christmas, but if you don't celebrate the holiday or have another pressing 'Thank You' to send, feel free to change it up!

My boys' winter concert was this past Thursday.  You can tell their mama is a dancer - while everyone else stood nice and tall as they sang, my kiddos couldn't help but bop around to the beat :).  Anyway, the show was fabulous.  I would have enjoyed it even more if it weren't for the parents in the audience who obviously had no concern for decorum, respect for the performers, or any clue as to what proper theater etiquette is.  The poor music teacher had to stop the show several times to ask the audience to be quiet.  I was stunned that it was necessary and so heartbroken for her!  I thanked her in person for her hard work, but I wanted to be sure that she received a thank you card, too.  So, I made this:

I used vintage sheet music from Scrap Rat that I colored with Twinkling H20's (watercolors infused with mica for sparkle).  The sticker sentiment is by SRM Stickers.  Once I finished the card, I knew it needed a matching envelope, so a mini banner with doodled string was created :).

I know we are very busy people this time of year, but let's not be too busy to say "thank you".  Even a simple card like mine will suffice.  Head on over to The Studio blog to see what the rest of the DT created - Rebekah's is awesome!  I'm off to create a few dozen baby shower invitations.  Oh, the joy of becoming an auntie!  Enjoy your day! Tessa

Friday, December 10, 2010

Designer Friday!

I love Fridays.  I especially love them because I get to share with you what my talented design team has been up to.  Mandie created one of her fabulous signature double-page layouts with three sets of my rolled fabric flowers - Hunter Green, Red, and Caramel:

Mandie said, "When I saw the flowers in my package I knew they would be PERFECT with the Echo Park Merry Christmas papers that I have been hoarding!"  I knew they'd be perfect, too - that's why Mandie was sent these particular blooms :).  You can really see the shine in this photo:

Windy is ready for gift-giving after using fabric and felt flowers from the Country Christmas Bouquet and Christmas Scroll set.

"I think these would make great gift bags and gift card holders for teacher, co-worker gifts or for anyone you might be delivering a small gift to," Windy says.  I agree!  The kraft paper compliments the flowers so well, and the result is simply elegant.

Thank you, Mandie and Windy, for some fantastic holiday inspiration!  How are your holiday preparations coming along?  If you'd like to place an order for any holiday gifting, scrapping, or decorating, I can ship on Monday :).  Use this coupon code for 10% off your order: DESIGNERFRIDAY2 (good through Sunday).  Shop here.

Have a wonderful day! Tessa

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Studio and SNR

Happy Tuesday!  I wanted to share my page for this week's challenge at The Studio, which is to create a page without a title.  I looked through the last 50 or so layouts I've made and could only find a couple without titles.  I tend to struggle with titles, so it felt good to have permission not to include one.  Here is my take:

I love how my eyes go straight to the photo.  The design team did a fabulous job (as usual!), although some of us really liked the challenge and some of us had a hard time :). 

I hope you can join us.  With the busy-ness of December beginning to overwhelm us, I think creating a layout with one less element could be very do-able!

I also wanted to let you know that my Featured Artist article is up at Scrapbook News and Review!  I worked very hard on the samples and would love for you to take a look.

Have a great day! Tessa

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Attitude of Gratitude - Final Post

Thomas S. Monson, president of the Church of Jesus of Christ of Latter-day Saints, said, "This is a wonderful time to be on earth. While there is much that is wrong in the world today, there are many things that are right and good. There are marriages that make it, parents who love their children and sacrifice for them, friends who care about us and help us, teachers who teach. Our lives are blessed in countless ways. We can lift ourselves and others as well when we refuse to remain in the realm of negative thought and cultivate within our hearts an attitude of gratitude. If ingratitude be numbered among the serious sins, then gratitude takes its place among the noblest of virtues. Someone has said that 'gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.'"  I'm grateful for the inspiration I found in these words, and that I had the opportunity to host this Attitude of Gratitude challenge.

I am so very grateful for all of you who joined in the challenge, and in turn, uplifted me.  These are just a few of the things YOU were grateful for:

the opportunties we have to act like kids and rediscover the joy of holidays ♥ the tiny bit of snow we had this morning ♥ music in my life ♥ hot water ♥ little baby voices ♥ a little girl named Brookie that saved my doggy Mr. Dandy from running away!! My little hero! ♥ my two most FAVORITE scrappy tools ♥ my family! ♥ good friends ♥ my sons' peronalities ♥ a job/supervisor that is not a stickler about promptness ♥ literacy and lunch ♥ me time ♥ my husband ♥ Filipino Pride ♥ Friendship...girlfriends rock ♥ Yoga.....keeps my sanity ♥ Fall leaves ♥ to be mother to such sweet, intelligent, thoughtful, funny, and beautiful boys ♥ to have a job that I love, and that allows me plenty of time to spend with my family ♥ that we always have food on our table ♥ to have a son who happily wears op shop clothes to Geoff for letting me indulge my hobbies without complaining too much ♥ Meaghan's soccer team mates who win and lose gracefully, no matter what the opposition (or opposing parents!) say or do ♥ Matt's friends, who are just a lovely pack of kids, who don't complain that parties they go to are alcohol free and who give each other hugs at the end of the night ♥ productive Sundays ♥ phone calls from long distance friends ♥ the wonderfully inspiring women that I seem to be surrounded by on a daily basis ♥ tissue with lotion ♥ I can connect with friends on the other side of the world with a click and enter ♥ beautiful glorious blue skies ♥ being a mother, being a wife, being a daughter, being a friend ♥ my wonderful, loving family ♥ that UTEE can be remelted again and again ♥ my kids did have the opportunity to get to know my Grandpa despite however brief their time together was ♥  the amazing opportunity to be part of Teresa Collins' new DT ♥ unexpected 'free' time ♥ my upbringing and my childhood ♥ all of the men and women who serve(d) our country selflessly every day ♥ my family and being able to host dinner ♥ early dismissal ♥ time to create.

And coming across posts like these made me feel so good:

Today I'm grateful for Tessa's challenge... I am glad that she came up with this idea, I am glad that I signed on to play along...and I am proud to say that I did all thirty days! :):):):):):):) Since I started this blog...I have NEVER blogged an entire month straight...and this month I did it! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):) (Julie)

I am thankful for Ms Tessa Buys, and the inspiration she brings me through her creativity and sweet nature. I'm really finding this gratitude journey enlightening, and without her I wouldn't have started it! (Amanda)

Here is my finished journal, complete with 30 days of thanksgiving.  Whenever I'm feeling down I plan to pull this out and count my blessings.  If I've learned anything through this experience, it's that gratitude = happiness.

Would you like to know who won the $25.00 gift certificate to Precocious Paper?  Anyone who linked me to posts (even if they weren't 30 straight days worth) was put into a hat.  Carson pulled a name and the winner is:


Congratulations! Email me at precociouspaper (at) yahoo (dot) com for how to claim your prize.  Thank you, everyone, for a fantastic month.  I'm already looking forward to next year :).  Have a great day!  Tessa

Friday, December 3, 2010

Designer Friday!

Happy Friday! This month I invited the design team to create something holiday-themed, so alongside layouts and cards you will be seeing gift wrapping, gift ideas, and holiday items, too!

The Cupcake Poppies have been big sellers this past week, and it must be because of all the fabulous layouts that we've been sharing featuring these sweet embellishments, like Suzy's adorable layout here:

Suzy especially loved how the tulle on the Pink Polka Dot Cupcake Poppy related to the tulle in her niece's sweet dress.

Suzy also picked up a tin at WalMart that she embellished with patterned paper, punched paper strips, and a Fabric and Felt Flower from the Autumn Splendor Bouquet.

Suzy wrapped a piece of cardstock around this gift and complimented her ornament doodle with a Fabric and Felt Flower from the Holiday Trees Bouquet.  I love how it matches her wrapping paper perfectly!

Heidi also topped a gift with a Fabric and Felt Flower, this one from the Christmas Scroll set:

Wouldn't this be a fabulous gift for someone?  I think my boys' teachers will be receiving these cute jars soon!  Heidi also created a fabulous ornament with a flower from the Country Christmas Bouquet.  She treated the petals with glitter and a dusting of Perfect Pearls, added a gorgeous bow, and hung it from her tree.  So pretty!  Again, I'm inspired!

Thank you Suzy and Heidi for incredible ideas and beautiful projects!  I feel like getting my Precocious Paper craft on now :).  If you do, too, please use this coupon through the weekend for 10% off your merchandise total: DESIGNERFRIDAY1.  The whole shop is on sale with this coupon, including albums, ribbons, and all embellishments.  Have a wonderful Friday! Tessa