Thursday, November 8, 2012

My Wish for You

It took me so long to scrap this beautiful picture.  My daughter's birthday is April 28... this is now November, and I just got to scrap her best birthday picture for this year.  Ok, I omitted to mention that I have 11 years of birthday pictures to scrap.  But this one, this very one is just so beautiful and inspiring.  Alyssa at 11 years old, going on 21, making a wish that nobody will ever know about.  And this is just right that way; my daughter has her own secrets and I totally respect that.  However, when I look at this picture, I know what my wish for her is.  In this layout, I found important to share with her what my hopes are, so I wrote quite a lot of journaling.  And when she read it, she gave me the longest hug she ever gave me.  Alyssa knows me, and she knows that I will always wish the best for her, and agree with her own choices.

I am my worst critic when it comes to judging my scrapbooking.  This layout is one of my favorites, because of the muted colours, the 'old wallpaper' look, and a collection of my daughter's favourite colours gathered in the same pages.

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod - The Creative Cellar, 2012

This layout has some kind of 'atmosphere' like we say in French.  It is soft but has character.  Layering, gesso, distressing, staining, journaling.  A nice mixed match of techniques that makes this layout speak for itself.  And most importantly, my daughter loves it.  This is really all that matters.

Here are some close-ups.

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod - The Creative Cellar, 2012

I like using delicate doilies that I crumple, stain, mist and either glue on my page or sneak in as little peek-a-boos in a folded corner.  I find these accents very feminine and 'vintage' at the same time.  I found some beautiful purple Prima flowers that I couldn't resist adding gesso on.  It gives a softer look to a romantic layout.

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod - The Creative Cellar, 2012

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod - The Creative Cellar, 2012
I hope you liked this post.  Thank you so much for stopping by.

Happy Scrappity Scrapin'!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

A new passion: Art journaling

When I took a class with the great Finnabair last June, the proposed project was to make an art journal using mixed media techniques.  Every one of us created a beautiful art journal using a Prima mixed media book cover and the coordinated pages

As I said in a previous post, this experience was a revelation for me!  I had some much pleasure creating with cover, and the result still blows me away!  Everyone in the class created a gorgeous art journal cover, and they were all so different from one another!  Here is mine, a mix of green, teal and gold.

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod, inpired by Finnabair

 The class with Anna also included techniques to create art journal pages.  We used tea to stain our pages, as well as distress ink, stains, gesso, stamps, etc.  Awesome!!

Here are the pages I made using the Finnabair techniques shown in the class.

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod, inpired by Finnabair
Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod, inpired by Finnabair

This experience made me want to try doing more by myself.  I created my own art journal pages using all kind of medias, including modeling paste, gesso, Dylusions, stains, burlap, lace, etc. 

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod

Created by Nathalie Noreau-McLeod

It felt wonderful creating these pages and I am so looking forward to making more.  Let me know if you like them!  I could post more... :o)

Saturday, September 22, 2012


Hello everyone,

I have been a very bad, bad blogger in the last few weeks.  For all of you following my blog, I appologize for being absent.  Life got in the way big time.  I am planning on resuming blogging very shortly, so please stay tuned!

Thank you for your understanding,

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Inspiration a la Finnabair

As many of you know, I had the privilege, along with over 60 other ladies, to take a class with an amazing artist, the great Anna Dabrowska (aka Finnabair). This event was organized by Scrap en Masse and was a huge success. Meeting such an inspiring artist was one of the best experience in my life!

I always wanted to try mix-media art. When I started painting a few year ago, I added Saran Wrap and Newspaper to my art so it would have more relief. But this was not satisfactory to me, I really wanted to add a third dimension to what I was doing. Taking Anna's class allowed me to try mediums that always intimidated me, which kept me from taking the leap. I had no technique or method to use the mediums, pastes, sealers, etc. During the class with Finnabair, we created the cover for an art journal, which I will show in a future post. This was a reveal for me; it opened the door to another world that I want to explore more and more.

So yesterday, I created a sign for my scraproom door, my Creative Cellar. 

The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod

I took one of my unused canvas and started by applying modelling paste with a mask to create a flowery background.

The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
I applied a mix of pigments and glimmer mist to colour my canvas. The elements I used come from my own stash, but I also include an old key that my Dad had in his 'treasure box' (aka his mancave), a button that used to be on my hubby's military uniform, some dragonflies my friend Diane gave me, as well as lace and corrugated board. As a finishing touch, I applied the beautiful LuminArte Silk glaze and covered the whole canvas with a gloss protective sealer. So I did what Finnabair teached us, but added my personal touch to the mix!

The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
I love this new mix-media style and will probably create more and more. And now, I have a lovely sign to walk by every time I enter my scraproom :)

The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod
The Creative Cellar, Nathalie Noreau-McLeod

Happy creating!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Evolution 5

Hey there! Here is my fifth post of my Evolution series.  My intention is to get to six, so hang in there for those who don't like these posts!  I'm almost done!

This time, I decided to post the picture of the layout I made recently first, as opposed to the other posts I wrote on the same subject.  So this time, the main challenge from the techniques class was to use the colour wheel to create our layout.  The principle is simple: using the colour wheel, find the triad of colours that fit your pictures the best.  The application of this principle: not so simple.

You must have concluded by looking at my layouts (see my gallery or older posts if you need), that I am rather a 'vintage/sophisticated/grunge' kind of scrapper.  So to be imposed colours by a so called wheel is out of my element, to say the least!  In both cases, i.e. in both times I attended that class where I was imposed colours, anxiety showed up in my chest and stayed there until I was done.

I have to admit, the result is not bad.  Not my cup of tea, but not bad.  So, here is the layout I made this summer during my SEM Scrapbooking Techniques class #2.

Mon Jardin Secret, completed July 16, 2012

So the first time around, I also had to use the colour wheel for this class.  I chose pictures of my daughter at 3 months old, when I visited my parents for a week.  Of course, I didn't know that my dear Papa would pass away a few days after that class, when my pictures and paper was picked using the colour wheel.  I have to admit, it took me quite a few months before I was able to even start this layout, but I did it, with a lot of pain and tears.  I like this layout though, and it reminds me of how my Father was an amazing Grand-Father.  He loved his grand-children like his own children.  Ok, I am digressing here.  So here is the layout I created in the summer of 2011.

De l'Amour plein les bras, completed in July 2011

This layout also gave me a hard time with the colours I had to work with, but I love it.  It is now in my daughter's album.

And here is the guilty colour wheel.  Kidding!  This tool is amazing and can assist any artist, including scrapbookers or cardmakers, in choosing colour combinations that will always succeed.  No wonder painters, interior designers, and other professionals make it their #1 tool.  It just takes a little bit of time and help to know how to use it at first. 

And once you know, you're good to go!
Happy colouring!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Evolution 4

Hello Friends! It has been six long weeks since I wrote on my blog... life got busy, that's the least I can say! But here I am, full of energy and with a lot of new layouts and fun stuff to share with you.

I am back from France where I spent two wonderful weeks visiting Paris and the Loire Vallée with my hubby. Of course, I took over 600 pictures, just to make sure I have enough scrapping material to keep me busy for the next 5 years!
So, being back home also means being back to preparing classes for Scrap en masse, my favorite scrapbooking store! I started a series of posts on the theme of evolution where I presented layouts I did during the course 'Technique de Scrapbooking #1 / Scrapbooking Techniques #1', which by the way will be given in English this fall.

Now I am presenting the layout I made for the second part of the course, 'Technique de Scrapbooking #2 / Scrapbooking Techniques #2' (same links as above). The first session of this series of 3 courses aim at combining stamping techniques along with creating a doilie and following specific guidelines in a layout.  Here is the layout I created last year, when I first took the class:

Based on an original layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

I have fond memories coming back at me when I see this layout, as it reminds me of the wonderful visit my family and I had in Victoria. We also visited Butchart Gardens, which is by far the most beautiful flower garden I've ever seen!

Since I could not find a doilie that matched my photos, I created one by cutting a big circle and punching smaller circles that I crumpled with my fingers and then sanded.

We also used background stamps to created a cool effect on the white cardstock. Since I also wanted to include pictures of the flowers I saw, I re-sized four of them into 2x3 wallet size pictures using PhotoShop Element and combined them on a single 4x6 mat. I few embellishments clustered around, et voilà!

This time around, I created a totally different 'look' using the same layout. I made this girly looking layout for my very girly daughter. She loves it!

Based on an original layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

Again, I made my own doilie, this time using the hearts that were on one of my papers.  I cut them with scissors and inked them with Walnut Stain distress ink.

I found this cute girl chipboard in a sale bin at SEM. I painted it and added a few coats of glimmer glam to give it a glittery effect. I embellished it with pearls and flowers.

I used the new sew stamping around my page, I love how it turned out!

Finally, I used a beautiful background stamp and spayed it with goosebumps texture spay, a very cool product that adds texture to any surface. You can see it on this picture. I used a beautiful die designed by cheery lynn designs, a company that I just discovered and that creates some truly amazing dies!

I hope you enjoyed this post! Happy scrapping everyone!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Evolution 3

Hey there friends!  Well it's time for another 'evolution' post, since I had a few layouts done lately, and a fourth one on the way!

This time, for the third course of the Techniques Course #1 series, we had to create a layout using distressing techniques, paper scrapper, sand paper, distress ink, stains, eyelets and brads (using the Big Bite, which I finally acquired :o)). This is such a great tool, and I waited for such a long time before getting it! I'm like a man getting his first power tool :o).

So... this is my very first vintage looking layout.  When I created this layout, I knew this is what I wanted to do: vintage scrapbooking!  I like every type of scrapbooking, but the one style I LOVE and that I enjoy doing the most is vintage.  Here it is:

I remember not following the proposed layouts when I created this one, simply because I was so inspired by the pictures of my wedding celebration! I used chipboard swirls that I covered with stickles, black soot Ranger's distress ink, and beautiful Prima flowers.  Of course, I couldn't resist adding one of Tim's amazing keys!

This year, for that same course, I decided to use some very nice pictures of my son playing guitar and reading music.  It amazes me what my 8 years old boy can do with his instrument, having so much fun playing music on it!
So here is the vintage layout I created for Nicholas:

'La Musique dans l'Âme - base on an original layout from Josée Lalonde (SEM)

Since I just got my Big Bite, I decided to put in some eyelets and use burlap tread on my layout.  I used 'black sout' (my favorite I think!) and 'aged mahogany' distress inks.  Adding corrugated letters added to the overall atmosphere of rustic/simple/peaceful time I spent with my son.  This little boy has such a natural talent with music!

Now, this is the kind of layout I truly enjoy doing!  Whether it is grunge, romantic or nostalgic vintage, I just love it.

Of course, some journaling to complete the layout, and voilà!  If you like this post, leave me a comment!

Until next time, happy scrapping!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Evolution 2

Hi there everyone!  Since I'm on a blogging roll, might as well keep going.  In my previous post 'Evolution 1', I mentioned this series of upcoming posts presenting some kind of 'before and after' layouts.  For more details, go read the post :)

So here is layout #2 I made during my first time taking the Scrapbooking Techniques #1 course series in 2011.

Based on an original layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

The goal in making this layout was to learn how to use border punches and find the right paper to enhance our photos.  This might seem pretty simple, but for scrapbooking beginners, or those who don't have it in them to combine colours, this can be a challenge.  We also learned how to cluster our embellishments.

My sweet little Alyssa has just turned 2 weeks old on these pictures.  looking at this layout bring a lot of fond memories... isn't it what scrapbooking is about?  Absolutely!

So this time around, I made layout #2 about my son's 8th birthday.  Here is the layout I made for this same class: Call me MJ.

Based on an original layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

My son Nicholas likes Michael Jackson's style very much.  So when he received the Michael Jackson's Experience Wii game from his big sister, he started dancing like MJ.  Good memories and great laugh.

Since this layout is all about fun, I used big chipboard letters that I sanded and embellished with baker's twine.

I used these cute bottle caps for a boyish look and embellish the layout!  Aren't they neat??

I hope you liked this post.  Thanks for stopping by, and happy scrapping!

Evolution 1

Hello dear readers! It's been a long (too long!) time since I had the occasion to finally sit down and blog! But here I am, with many creations to share with you :)

During the last couple of months, I have been busy creating and preparing for a very exciting life experience: teaching scrapbooking.  I have joined the Creative Team at Scrap en masse, a wonderful scrapbooking store located in Alfred, a little town 45-60  minutes from Ottawa.  I will be teaching  scrapbooking techniques #1 and #2, an upcoming series of vintage techniques and layout classes, and maybe a course on Dylusions.  I am really excited about all this!

In order to teach the two techniques classes, which I attended last year, I needed to take it again so I can learn the new content of this 6-day course.  However, most of the exercises are the same, with some variations, and I thought it would be cool to show you the comparable layouts.

The first layout is made of strips of papers that we combine to make the base of the layout.  Basic embellishment were used in this first layout.  So this is the layout #1 I made in 2011.

Based on a layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

The new content of the first class now includes techniques to make handmade flowers, the use of glimmer mist and other medias.  Here is the layout #1 I made in 2012.

Based on a layout created by Josée Lalonde (SEM)

I like this layout, it is so colourful.  I added Apple and Red Velvet glimmer mist on my pages and flowers.  I also used glimmer glam on my red handmade flowers.

This post is the first of a series.  For each layout I created in my class the first time, I will write a post and compare it with my most recent one.

Let me know what you think, I always love hearing from you :)

Thanks for stopping by, and have fun scrapping!