STORY OF THE PAGE: On October 19, Dan and I marked our 23 year wedding anniversary. It’s our tradition to exchange cards on these most auspicious of occasions. We generally eschew gifts and neither of us know exactly how that tradition took hold. But in any event, it’s all about that card. Plus, it saves money. One less yearly gift. Of course I like to get crafty with my card. Why buy when you can make, right? So with the help of InDesign and my Silhouette Cameo, I created this lovely card and placed it into a clear envelope.
The card features a list of 23 reasons/items/things detailing why I would do this whole thing over again without hesitation. (True, I would do a few things differently, but that’s for another layout and another post.)
The next day I thought, “Hey, that list would make a fine scrapbook page,” and so I set out to make said page. I’d been savoring the patterned paper you see and figured now was as good a time as any to use it. Here’s a look at the page.
Yes, there is a black bar on this page that has been digitally added. When I typed up my list for the card, I wasn’t thinking public consumption and so when it’s just me and my boo*, swears will happen.
*Technically, I have never actually called him my ‘boo.’ I’m just trying to bridge the generation gap of crafting.
1. Your lips.
2. The babies that we made.
3. Joe Jackson’s music.
4. How fun it was to smoke cigarettes with someone I was actually dating.
5. Spooning as a method to alleviate menstrual cramps.
6. Your sense of humor.
7. Your general taste in women (as most of the women you find attractive usually have something similar to me.)
8. You do all the yardwork.
9. Your even-natured personality.
10. You’re not super picky about food and even though you don’t love chili, you don’t make demands in the kitchen.
11. Your sentimental side. I know, we aren’t supposed to embrace sentimentality, but [eff] it, I still do sometimes.
12. Your facial hair abilities.
13. The way you smell.
14. You look good in glasses.
15. You look good in clothes AND out of clothes.
16. Your willingness to work on yourself and not give up on this marriage of ours.
17. Wine expertise.
18. Your hair.
19. Your work ethic.
20. Your mix-making abilities.
21. Your kindness.
22. Your family is pretty alright.
23. The lifetime of memories we’ve created together.
DESIGN BREAKDOWN: The page balance is primarily asymmetrical, because the journaling block is ever so slightly wider than the paper/title/photo area. That said, I made sure to add weight to the left side of the page, using the wide strip of patterned paper to hold the title, the word strip, the photo and the little wooden heart. Repetition is seen with the color white, picked up in the paper, the ’23 years’ tag, and the border on the photo. I love how simple and monochromatic this whole color scheme is. Monochromatic is very soothing and inviting.
TECHNICAL SHIT: I created a simple list using InDesign. One of the things I love about that program is its ability to let you format lists with hanging indents quickly. I tried to do this in Photoshop, thinking I could package this design up and sell it as a template but after about 30 minutes of Googling “create a hanging indent in Photoshop” I got frustrated and said, “Hello, InDesign.” Yes, I’m sure you can do it but it wasn’t working the way I wanted it to. Let’s face it: Photoshop is not a typographer’s dream. However, Photoshop is perfectly adept at letting you create title strips, like the one you see on this page. I made an 11-inch tall rectangle, changed it’s color to brown. Next I added a text box on top of it and changed the text color to white, creating the white type effect. I sent that to print (along with a few other color options I was considering) on smooth white card stock with borderless print settings, to create the full length strip. Next, I created a ’23 years’ tag of sorts. I opened a new document in the Silhouette software, made the box with rounded corners, added my text (Avenir) and duplicated it a few times to try a few different sizes. I used my favorite textured Bazzill card stock for the tag, to add some visual texture. I seriously love that Silhouette. It was money well spent. I think I’ve told you this before, but I tried to wrangle a freebie from that company to no avail. The salad days of freebies? Not what they used to be working in this business. That said, I did get to write it off in 2013 so in a way it all balances out. #selfemploymentforthewin
Next, I took a photo I had of Dan and created a little print that was supposed to mimic the look of an Instax print. I’m not the owner of one of those bad boys, so I have to make do with my mad Photoshop fakery skills.
Finally, I trimmed one edge with my Fiskars scallop blade, something I do frequently just to add a little visual interest without being annoying. But seriously? Mama needs a new blade. That sucker has seen its better days.
SENTIMENTAL SHIT: 23 years is a really long time. We still work every day to be the people we want to be and the mates we know we are capable of being. It’s not all moonlight and roses, that’s for sure, but I am still so very grateful for the opportunity to keep showing up. At the core, we’ve got a very good thing here. We just need to keep excavating.