Monday, 21 January 2019

Artline Monday - 2019 memory keeping in your Bullet Journal

If you want to focus on the positive things in your life this year then this bullet journal idea will help you do just that!  If you don't already have a bullet journal all you need is an empty notebook and to read my post about how to get started, then come back here.  If you have already got your journal set up let's get on with this...

Memory keeping Bullet Journal spread

The idea behind this spread is to create a space to record your favourite thing/s about each month.  This could be the best book you read or a memory you want to keep, it could be a quote you heard and liked or just a movie you watched and really enjoyed.  You can use the space for whatever you want to remember and then at the end of the year you will have a record of all of your favourite things about 2019.

I wrote "2019 Favourites" at the top of my two pages using an Artline Supreme metallic marker (a sparkly pen for a shiny new year) and a little description about what I will be using the pages for.  Then I drew 12 boxes with my fineliner, leaving a space to add the first three letters of each month.  I also wanted to add some extra colour and sparkle to the layout so I gave each box a silver shadow with another metallic marker.

The last thing I did was add a quote along the bottom of my pages, I went with "This is your year to sparkle!" as it makes me feel inspired and ready to face the next twelve months!

I love using the Supreme metallic markers because of how shiny they are, you can see the silver shimmer in the ink in the photo below, they really do catch the light and sparkle!

Metallic shimmer

If you are more of a visual person you could adjust this layout a little and spread it out over four or six pages to give you bigger boxes and then you could add your favourite photographs for each month instead, I think that would be pretty neat!

Please let me know if you do give either of these ideas a go, I would love to see how it turns out!

Monday, 14 January 2019

Artline Monday - Self care ideas

January is a great time to get into some new good habits and indulging in some self care is definitely on the list of things I want to do more regularly this year.  I realised at the end of last year that I hadn't really been looking after myself or taking the time to do the things I enjoy so I decided to change that in 2019.  If you feel like you have been neglecting yourself a little then I have some easy and inexpensive ideas for you to try!


Self care ideas - created with Artline pens

If you are super busy then it can be hard to find the time to look after yourself and recharge your batteries but if you can squeeze in one of these activities once a week or even better daily then they should help you feel a little more pampered or refreshed.

Relax and unwind

Have a shower or bath

Whichever you prefer or can fit into your day, use a squirt of your favourite shower gel and wash your worries away!

Movie night

When was the last time you sat through a whole film without keeping one eye on your phone and scrolling through Facebook or other social media?  Grab some snacks, put your mobile out of reach, turn off the lights and pop on a film.  

Music

Play your favourite song or album, sing and dance along if the mood takes you.  There's nothing like escaping into music to bring a smile to your face.


Be kind to yourself

Read

Discover a new book or revisit an old favourite, take the time to sit and devour a chapter or two.  A good book is like a mini holiday if it sweeps you away to a different world or life.

Take a nap

Honestly naps are the best! Twenty minutes or half an hour curled up on the sofa is my ultimate treat.

Enjoy your favourite hot drink

Grab a cup or giant mug of your favourite hot drink, sit down, sip slowly and relax, warm your hands and your soul.  

Get warm and cosy

This is just for the next few months while it is still pretty cold outside, invest in a pair of think, warm socks to keep your feet nice and toasty and wrap yourself in a jumper or cardigan to chase away the chill of winter!  If you are at home you can add a blanket around your shoulders or a dressing gown, bonus points for a hot water bottle too!

I used lots of Artline products to create this spread including finelinersmetallic markers and Stix drawing and brush pens, lettering and doodling are another couple of things I like to do during my "me time" so this was a fun way to spend my morning!  

If you would like some more ideas to help you relax or battle through the rest of January then you can read my Ways to relax and January motivation posts for a bit of inspiration. If you fancy taking up a new hobby then check this post out for some ideas as well.


Monday, 7 January 2019

Artline Monday - How to start planning

So it’s a brand new year and the perfect time to get organised!  If you got a lovely new planner for Christmas or treated yourself in the sales then I have some tips for you today to help you get started on your planning journey.

My planning tips - created with Artline pens

No matter what kind of planner you use the basics of planning are the same: 

  • Write down any important dates and reminders 
  • Take time to check and use your planner daily 
  • Follow through with your plans (it's no good writing things down & then not doing them)
  • Utilise to do lists 
  • Colour code

For this post I will be showing you how I plan my month but you can also use these tips for planning your week or day too.  


A blank month ready to be filled in

The very first thing I do is decide what colours I am going to use for my colour coding, having a set colour for certain things means it is easy to spot the information I need even when there are a lot of notes on my pages.  

For January I am using dark blue for birthdays, light blue for my children, royal blue for my blog, grey for me, black for my husband and a blue highlighter for any bills or payments I need to make.  I made a note of this in the long, thin box down the right hand side of my page but as the month goes on I usually remember what each colour is for anyway.  Then it was time to fill in the month with my important dates and reminders.  

All my dates and reminders

I also add any money that will be coming out of my account by drawing a thick line with my highlighter and writing over it which bill it is for.

Adding bills & payments with a Supreme highlighter

I like to use a little bit of space to write down my goals for the month (or week or day depending on what I am planning) so I used a Supreme brush marker to create my own header for this and then added them to my notes section.   

Goals for the month

I also made another header for my monthly to do list.  These are usually things that I need to get done over the course of the month but not on a specific week or day.  On my weekly pages I have daily to do lists that include things like tasks and errands.

I use to do lists to help me achieve my big goals too.  Sometimes a goal can seem really far away and hard to reach so I try to break it down into smaller steps that I can complete and it feels less scary and more manageable doing it this way.

Monthly to do list

Now I have all this information in my planner I need to open it up and check it daily!  Every night before I go to bed I look inside to see if I need to prepare anything for the following day and then I check again in the morning to make sure I know what I need to do or where I need to be.  I also need to add more notes and reminders as the month goes on and things change or crop up, setting aside 5 or 10 minutes a day to do this really helps me to keep on top of everything!

My month so far

If this post has inspired you to start planning but you don't have a diary or planner then you can use a notebook and pen to get organised, check out my Bullet journal basics post for some more ideas and information.


Monday, 24 December 2018

Artline Monday - Christmas Eve craft

Christmas Eve is probably one of the most exciting days of the year so sometimes it is hard to get your young children to calm down especially in the evening.  I mean I don't blame them, I also get super excited about Santa being on his way but if you want to help them wind down a little before bed you could get them to make their own treat plate for Father Christmas.

There are two ways you can do this craft, either with a plain ceramic plate which you can keep to use each year (and it would make a lovely Christmas keepsake) or with a paper plate and it could become part of your Christmas Eve traditions to make a new one together each year.

Supplies for this Christmas Eve craft

If you are going to be using a ceramic plate you will need some of these pens for the design:

Artline Supreme permanent markers
Artline Supreme metallic markers
Artline 853 OHP pens
Artline 90 permanent markers

All of these pens work great on the ceramic surface!  We used a selection of them to make our own plate for Santa's treats.

Signing her name with the Artline 853 OPH pen

Summer drew Santa & I added the holly
 
All set for Christmas Eve

If you are using a paper plate then you can use any pens and markers and just get started designing them.  Here are some ideas Summer and I came up with last week...

Created by Summer age 7

My "a place for everything" plate design

Merry Christmas plate

Any festive scene or a drawing or message for Santa will be great.  The longer the plate takes to make the more time the children will have to sit still and relax so some helpful suggestions from you along the way could help to extend the craft! *wink wink*

I just want to take the time now to wish you all a very happy Christmas and I hope you have a wonderful time over the holidays!





Monday, 17 December 2018

Artline Monday - Christmas card craft

I can't believe Christmas is nearly here but there is still time to squeeze in another craft!  This week I have been making some sweet Christmas cards using my Artline pens.

Sheets of card, pens and markers

For this craft you will need:

  • Two sheets of card per Christmas card
  • A selection of Artline pens and metallic poster markers
  • Glue
  • Sequins 

The front of the card is quite simple because the inside is where we get really creative!  I drew a reindeer's face and antlers with baubles dangling off them using my Supreme brush markers and you can copy this design easily or come up with your own festive doodle. 

The front of our card

For the inside you will need your second sheet of card.  Fold it in half and then draw half a snowflake along the folded edge.  The snowflake is going to pop out of the card when it is opened so when you draw yours try to have two flat points which is where the flake will stay connected to the card.  I have marked mine with some small lines so you can see what I am talking about.

Draw half a snowflake

Carefully cut around the snowflake with either scissors or a craft knife.  Make sure you don't cut all the way around though, you want to leave your flat points alone which is another reason why I marked them out on mine.

The side you drew on is going to be the back of the inside of your card, open it out and gently pull your snowflake upwards so it stands away from the card.  You need to refold the line down the middle of the snowflake in the opposite direction so when you close the card it will shut with the flake sticking outwards instead of being flat inside it.

I coloured in my snowflake with a metallic blue poster marker and then I glued some sequins around it too.   Make sure you leave yourself enough room to write your season's greetings on the inside! 

Metallic blue snowflake

I opened up the card I drew the reindeer on earlier and coloured in a large section with my silver Artline 900XF pen and added some metallic pink and gold spots with my poster markers.  

Adding an extra touch of sparkle

Then I glued all around the edges of the reindeer card and stuck my white piece with the snowflake inside it to make one whole Christmas card.  Now when I open it up you can see my pop up snowflake with a nice silver pattern behind it for that extra touch of sparkle and festive fun.

Inside the card

I'm really happy with how the card turned out, I like how simple the front looks and then you get a nice surprise when you open it up!

Let me know how you get on if you have a go at making your own please, I'd love to hear about it!

Monday, 10 December 2018

Artline Monday - Christmas envelope art ideas

I love sending (and receiving!) Christmas cards, sometimes they are the main contact I have with some of my far flung family and friends over the year so I like to make them look as nice as possible before I send them out.  Last year I wrote about Christmas card calligraphy and this year I am building on that with some envelope art you can do to make your cards look extra special.  

All set for some envelope art

I have four different designs to share with you can today, some are quick and simple to do and others will take a little while longer.  It just depends on how much time you want to spend on them and how confident you are drawing on the envelopes.

Classic red and gold theme

My first design is a classic Christmas theme, I used my favourite gold Artline calligraphy pen to write the surname of my recipient and then drew some different styles of snowflakes in varying sizes with the Artline 900 and 999XF metallic pens.  I wanted to make the surname standout even more so I drew around it with my black fineliner to give it some depth.  Snowflakes are pretty easy to draw but if you don't know where to start you can copy mine or google "how to draw snowflakes" for some step by step instructions.  

If you don't want to write or draw directly onto the envelope with your pens (in case you make a mistake) you can do it lightly with a pencil first and then go over it in ink when you are happy with how it looks.  

Snowy theme

This second design can be done really quickly but I think it looks great!  I painted a layer of snow along the bottom of the envelope with a white poster marker and then drew two circles for the snowman.  I added some coal buttons, a hat, eyes and a smile with my black fineliner and a carrot nose, scarf and twig arms with my Supreme pens too.

I used the poster marker to write the surname of the family this card is going to followed by their address with the fineliner and then covered the rest of the space with falling snow.  I have left a small space clear for the postage stamp as I want to make sure it is stuck securely to the envelope when I send it.

Christmas decoration theme

The third design features lots of Christmas decorations dangling down along the top edge of the envelope.  I used my gold star stamper for a couple of the ornaments and then drew the rest by hand.  All the pens and poster markers I used to colour things in were metallic for that extra Christmassy feel!

After I had drawn all the decorations on this envelope I made a mistake on the name so instead of throwing it away and starting over again I adapted the design and corrected it by colouring around the name (and hiding my error) with the purple Supreme pen.  If you made a mistake take a minute to look at the envelope and see if you can think of a way to salvage it using the products you have.  If all else fails you could always stick a white address label over it and write on top of that instead.   

Fairy lights theme

My final design is my favourite one, I absolutely love fairy lights so I covered my envelope with a string of them.  I started off by drawing the twisted wire around the top and bottom edges and then added the light bulb shapes.  I chose traditional colours for the bulbs and coloured them in with my Supreme brush markers and a yellow paint marker.  I used the paint marker because the envelope is a grey/silver colour and I wanted the yellow to really standout against it.  I also used my metallic silver Supreme pen to colour in the bases that attach the bulbs to the wire.

After I wrote the surname I added an extra string of lights to make it look like the name was part of the wire connecting the fairy lights together.  The whole thing took me less than five minutes so you should be able to whizz through a stack of cards with this design in next to no time!

So have I inspired you to have a go at some envelope art?  I would love to see it if you do have a go!

Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, 3 December 2018

Artline Monday - Make A Gift Day

Today is Make A Gift Day so it's the perfect time to share another Christmas craft with you!  This time I am making a festive snow scene for my neighbour's daughter who is obsessed with dinosaurs but you can pop whatever you like inside yours and the method will be the same.

Gathering my supplies

For this craft you will need:

  • A clean empty jar with a lid
  • Some fake snow or white or silver glitter
  • Items to create your scene like small toys, pine cones or Christmas decorations
  • Artline 900XF metallic pens
  • A white Artline poster marker
  • A piece of foam or a small sponge

I found this dinosaur in the bottom of a toy box in my children's room, he looked a little worn and unloved so I transformed him with my metallic silver Artline 900XF marker and now he looks much better!


Colouring in the dinosaur toy

I wanted to make my pine cone look a little special too so I added some gold highlights to the tips of it.

Adding gold highlights

Unless you want to be covered in marker it is a good idea to set anything you have coloured in to one side and leave them to dry for a while.

Waiting for the ink to dry

While they were drying I used the lid to draw a circle on my sponge so it would be roughly the same size as the mouth of my jar.  The sponge is going to raise my scene so it will be higher up in the jar than if I just glued everything directly to the bottom of the lid.

Drawing around the jar lid

Then I cut out my circle and painted the top of it white with the Artline poster marker so it would look a little snowy.

Painting the sponge

I used super glue to stick the sponge to the inside of the lid....

Gluing the sponge inside the lid

.... and then glued the tree, pine cone and silver dinosaur on top of the sponge.

Glue your items to the sponge to create your scene

I added some fake snow inside the jar, the amount you can see in this photo was too much so I had to take about half of it back out!

Add your fake snow, you'll need less than you think

Once the glue had dried and my figures were secure and in place I screwed the lid back onto the jar.

Screw the lid onto the jar

Flip the jar over and you have your snowy scene!

The finished snow scene

You can make these scenes with any size jar, from tiny mini ones to huge ones!  You just need to make sure whatever you glue to the lid will fit inside the jar and through the mouth of it before you start.  

If you wanted to make them into traditional snow globes you would just need to add some water and a spoon of glycerine to help the glitter float around.  You should also glue the lid shut so no one could open the jar again once it had been filled. 

Now I know how well the Artline 900XF metallic pens work on such odd surfaces I keep thinking of all the things I could use them on to make more Christmas decorations!  If I find anymore small forgotten toys I just might colour them in too, thread them with some ribbon and hang them on my tree!


Friday, 30 November 2018

Planner Friday - November

It's Planner Friday again over on the Trendy Twine blog and I am sharing my Christmas plans with you, please pop over and say hi!

I can't hold it in any longer, I'm so excited!  December is only a day away and then we can all get into the festive mood!  With this in mind I have been using my APB stamps to plan my perfect Christmas.  I want to get the lights, decorations and Christmas tree up as soon as possible and spend my weekends watching holiday movies with my children.  Though there is all that pesky shopping, wrapping and card writing to get through as well so I definitely need my planner to help me!


As usual I started my spread by adding some strips of washi tape along the top and bottom of my pages and then chose some coordinating Christmas Trendy Page Dots to reinforce the holes and add an extra splash of colour.


An extra splash of colour with the Trendy Page Dots

These pages are my monthly overview so I'm only adding the most important reminders and events to them, I will be recording everything else like housework and my regular to do lists (or the boring bits!) in my weekly pages so this is really just to give me an idea of how my month is shaping up so far. I also wanted it to look fun and festive so I'd feel a little tingle of Xmas excitement whenever I check my planner!


Cheers!


I've recently moved into an A5 sized organiser so I had plenty of room to add some fun decoration to my pages using stamps from the FoodiesDrinks & More and Perfect Pairs sets, after all it's the season of cocoa and cookies with the odd glass of fizz thrown in as well!

You can read the rest of my post here.

Thanks for stopping by!