Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Shopping Spree anyone?? I'm teaching at the Scrapbook & Papercraft Expo

Hi everyone,

A super fun share for me today with exciting news!!  Did you know that I am teaching at the upcoming Scrapbook & Papercraft expo?  

It's only a few short weeks away AND class spots are available now for my Session Two class called "Make A Wish" - See below to see how just by booking in you could win yourself a $100 shopping spree at Cocoa Vanilla Studios!!

Click on the class you are interested in via the timetable here: 

Skill level: all levels
Join Gwen for a fun-filled class and create two gorgeous layouts with the Cocoa Vanilla Studio Make A Wish collection. Learn tips and tricks to achieve lovely layers in Gwen’s signature style and for those who feel brave, add a touch of hand stitching to your layouts. Get the most out of your products using an assortment of layering techniques, plus learn Gwen’s expert clustering tips so you can create stunning pages at home.

Even better news:

Did you know that by booking into one of the Cocoa Vanilla Studios classes with either Zoe or Gwen at this year's expo that you could WIN a Cocoa Vanilla spending spree? 
Every class you book gives you an entry into our prize draw for a $100 voucher to spend in our online store!

If you haven't booked a class yet, make sure you visit the expo website! 

I would love it if you all came along to create with me, it would be so nice to see you all in person!!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

"The Happy Crazy Sister" for D-lish Scraps

Hi Everyone,

Another layout to share with you today for D-lish Scraps.  I had such fun creating this page, not only due to the fun photo, but because it was created on a little scrap day with the super talented Amanda Hartmann and Nicolee Cable from the D-lish design team as well as some other very special scrapbooking ladies!

Yep, so now I better explain the photo a little.  This one features my sister and I and was taken on Christmas day 2016.  Our mum has a Christmas tradition (like many) that once dinner is served, we all crack Bon Bons, tell the jokes and wear our paper hats.  No-one is "allowed" to take their hat off until dinner is done!  One year, mum even made us all Santa hats and stitched our names on them which was hilarious, as we all obviously know each others names seeing we are having Christmas dinner together!! 

Anyway, this was a quick silly selfie taken of my sister and I to add to the ongoing tradition that is the Christmas hat for our family.  I'm so serious because I was concentrating on taking the selfie and she is crazy, well, because she IS just a little crazy.

Now onto the layout!!  This one started with some pretty paint splatters using my mists and these large yellow fussy cut flowers.  Next, I set about matting my photo and used a paper baggie to do this.  I love the bold colours of these!  I also found a scrap of yellow paper to mount my photo and Amanda gave me this piece of silver/white mesh which added lovely texture to my paper layers.   

Next, I added in my bright yellow fussy cut flowers and then went looking through my stash of D-lish flowers.  I just love the floral choices Amanda gets for us all, from paper to resin there are so many to choose from in lots of sizes, so great for layering.  I've added links below to all of these!

Once I was happy with my paper flower clusters, it was time to add in some resin flowers.  I like to spread these out in little clusters, usually in 3 spots around my page.   You all know by now I'm a huge fan of these wooden hearts, the perfect addition to any page... you can paint or ink over them but I rarely do as I love their soft wooden shade.  You can also see here I've added in some of the divine glitter dots as well.

One last close up, this time of the cute bow - how sweet are these??  They come on a paper clip so you can easily attach to your paper layers.

I hope you have enjoyed today's post and the little bit of silly that goes along with it.  It's so nice to scrap family traditions isn't it!

D-lish products used:

thanks for popping by today

Thursday, May 18, 2017


Hello fellow paper lovers,

I'm back today to share my latest creation for Cocoa Vanilla Studios.

With the release of the new You Rock collection, we are focusing this week on the boys in our life, so how could I not scrap a page of my darling husband. ((Yes, another silly snap, this time on a quick coffee date.))

The idea for this page began with a grid design.  I have always loved these as they are such a great way to start a page, especially when you are not 100% sure of what direction to go in.  I began by cutting 8 squares all 3.5-inch x 3.5-inches.  I chose the circular design of the 'Stripped' paper for three of the squares, the white side of the 'Experimental' paper for two more and the blue side of this paper for 2 more squares.

I have mounted these onto the 'Night Sky' paper into 3 rows.  I even placed a square in the very centre as at this stage I wasn't sure where I wanted my photo mat.  I love the lines in the background, they remind me of notebook paper from school.  Next, I knew I wanted to fill in the 2 left over spaces of my grid. For the lower one I chose a blue frame from the chipboard stickers and for the top right-hand side, I chose a large circular piece from the ephemera pack.  

Every collection, Zoe wow's us with her die cut ephemera packs and this one is no exception!  I've used the large piece that says 'You are my WORLD" as part of my title and so many other bits and pieces in this layout.  I love how it's circular shape highlights the circles in the paper design.  This gave me the idea to add a few more!! I added a larger circle to the left of my photo and 2 smaller ones to the bottom right-hand corner of my photo.  I also added here a star cut from the 'Random' paper.

Next, I went about adding another layer of squares, overlapping the background grid.  I have used my photo mat as the largest of these and then added 2 more chipboard frames to round out the design.  I then went about filling in the spaces using ephemera, more chipboard pieces, Accessory Stickers, Wood veneer and a flair.

The 'hello' piece from the wood veneer set became the beginning of my title.  The natural colour of the wood coordinated really well with the yellow hints I was picking up in my photo so no need to add anything, just glue and go.  Next, I had to add some of the Rubber Charms!!  I completely forgot I was supposed to be hoarding these and added 3 in total, don't you just love love love them!

Last but not least, I added a flair from the flair pack and the layout was done.
With so many fun elements in this collection,  there really is something for everyone and I have so enjoyed creating with it!  If you haven't seen the collection yet, be sure to check it out!

Until next time

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

"So Thankful" for D-lish Scraps

Hi Everyone,

Another layout to share with you today for D-lish Scraps.  After the divine Inspiration board for this month was revealed,  I was inspired to use a similar combo again for this layout. I went with Grey, Yellow and Pink this time rather than the Melon shade and I love the results.  I am always so blown away by the unique colour combos our Boss Lady Amanda comes up with for the kits and they are always so inspiring to work with.

I have been seeing a lot of beautiful layouts lately using the "Shorelines Script" font and I just HAD to get my hands on it!  I managed to find it at so I downloaded it and was able to use it with my Silhouette to cut out the title for this page.  I started by cutting out the word "thankful" 6 times, 3 in white card stock and 3 others in shades of yellow and pink.

Next, I pulled out my mists and did a little splattering up and down the centre section of my card stock.  I knew I wanted a centred design for this one mainly due to the large photo I wanted to use of my sister and mum and the length of the words I had cut out.  I also used a little of the packaging technique in a really light shade of pink and yellow, I wanted this to be subtle.  I worked on my photo mat next, adding a few paper layers in pink, grey and yellow.  This allowed me to see where my photo would be placed in relation to the words I wanted to use.

Next, I went about layering up the words I had cut, layering a white one, then a pink or yellow one on top.  Once I was happy with the placement considering my photo mat, I stitched them down.  Next, it was time to add the "SO" part of the title, this was also cut from my Silhouette in a bold and simple font and was placed in the centre top part of my page.  With the bulk of the design done, it was now time to add in all the pretty elements.  

As soon as I saw these sparkly puffy hearts in the shop I snapped some up, so so pretty!  You can still get the Pretty in Pink Kit which includes one of these in each kit on the website.  Such a pretty kit.  I've also used Enamel Dots, D-lish Bows and a variety of Resin Flowers to finish.

I hope you all get a chance to play along with the Inspiration board this month and be sure to check out this months kit!

D-lish products used:

Puffy Hearts from the Pretty in Pink Kit

thanks for popping by today

Thursday, May 4, 2017


Hello again Creative friends,

Here today to share another Cocoa Vanilla Studios layout, this time using up my stash of Totally Rad.  With the new release You Rock in stores soon, I thought NOW would be a great time to use up my stash ready for the shiny new things!  You will all know I'm not a big "boy" scrapper, but I do love this line as it has a softer feel than some other grungy style boy lines.  It's not crazy out of my style, but I promise not a flower in sight!

Now would probably be a good time to 'explain' this photo!! Hubby and I had just taken a ride on the Wheel of Brisbane, which you can see me pointing to in the middle of the photo.  We were on a rare date - we don't get much time just the two of us (without Miss 10) so we were feeling a little silly and snapped this selfie!  It really does capture the crazy side of my man, which of course I love.  

The design of the page started with the Line Up paper, which I consider a great neutral and totally useable on pages of any type.  I love the bold lines and knew I wanted these to run lengthways across the background of my layout.  Next, I went about cutting a chevron cut file.  I found this one on the Silhouette website #55485.  This is a great file for using up paper scraps, you could mix and match any papers that you have left in this collection as they all work really well together.  Once cut, I arranged them in lines on my background alternating the Stellar paper and the Say What paper.   Once I was happy with the placement, I stitched them down with some gold thread, because who doesn't love gold thread right?? :)

Next, I knew I wanted to use the title "these are Good Times" from the Mix Tape paper so I fussy cut it out and mounted it onto a neutral part of that same paper.  I also fussy cut out the words "Love This" and "Crazy" as I thought they fit my photo really well.  It was then time to mount the photo, for this I've used plain white card stock from my stash.  Then I went about adding the title and photo onto my page. I did this first, as they were my two biggest elements and I wanted to be sure I had their placement right before adding my smaller embellishments.

Once the photos were locked in, it was time to add the other text elements including those I had cut in the step above.  I felt like my page needed a little more and when I saw the sticker "You have to be odd to be number one" from the Accessory Stickers sheet I just knew I had to add it!  I also found this cute AWESOME banner in the Wood Veneer,  as well as the star and man icons.  I've also added in some Woodies - I love these things and am so glad to see them in quite a few of the Cocoa Vanilla collections.  I went with 3 cluster groups to round out the design and added some Enamel Shapes to finish.

So.. go on, pull out your left overs of Totally Rad and use them up, those shiny new things are not far away now!

Gwen xo

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

May Inspiration Board for D-lish Scraps

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are all ready for a STUNNING D-lish Scraps Inspiration Board this month... It is called "Sunset Dreaming" and I love love love it!!

and here is my take...

I have quite a collection of vintage teacups - they are all trio sets with the cup and saucer and a sandwich plate.  My favourites are the English ones.  I've set about trying to photograph them all and get them on layouts.  I am a big tea drinker and I love that quote "First I drink the Tea, then I do the things" so true! lol

I so loved making this layout and went all out with paper layers and HELLO sequins!

Oh so many D-lish goodies on this layout... almost everything you see here!

I seriously think I could make a squillion layouts using these colours, so soft and pretty!  I'm sure the kits this month are going to fly out the door so be sure to be quick to get yours on release night.

thanks for popping by today

Saturday, April 22, 2017

"Our Sweet Boy" for D-lish Scraps

Hello again creative friends,

Hope you are all well!!  It's my turn to share again on the D-lish scraps blog and today I have a layout of our sweet kitten Ferris.

This layout started with the hexagon background cut file and some paper scraps in pink and yellow shades; I have been hoarding these forever and was on a mission to use them up.  I also had this cute little Crate paper element of a kitty cat and it was so cute I had to use it! I love pink and yellow as a colour combo, problem is, our cat is a boy!!!  This is one of those moments when you realise you have chosen colours because you like them and NOT because they fit your photo! - whoops!!  So... what to do??  Well, I thought, why not document his sweet nature.  He may be a boy but he is the sweetest, loving little thing, so affectionate and tolerant of Miss 10 who sometimes forgets he is a kitten!!  

As I often do, I went about building up my paper layers for my photo mat first and included one of the 5x7 paper bags,  these are always a great start to a page.  I simply added my paper scraps together until I was happy with my layers. I then went about looking for extra elements to round out the layout.  I found this sweet Journal pack piece from the Past Kit Bits section of the website which was the perfect yellow to match my pattern papers and I knew I also had this Sequin Bow in a really bright shade of yellow that would be a perfect fit. 

I also wanted to add some Wood Veneer - it's no secret that I love adding these elements to my pages, and I especially love the tone of the wood in the D-lish store, no need to add paint if you don't want to, they are perfect as they are.  I also had the co-ordinating Flair to the journal piece and the cute little Bitty Bow Clip - I simply slid it off the clip part to make an adorable bow tie for my kitty image. 

Next, it was time to add some flower clusters, I love the softness of the Fantasy Blooms and the Tea Roses are really nice to add into clusters for interest, they are the perfect sized smaller flower. To avoid any confusion with the whole "he is a boy" thing, I decided on the title "Our Sweet Boy" using the puffy Alphas and of course some Enamel Dots and that's the layout complete.

D-lish products used:

thanks for popping by today

Tuesday, April 18, 2017


Hi creative friends,

Back with you today for something a little different.  This week over on the Cocoa Vanilla Studios blog we are Scrap lifting!!  Like many of you I'm sure, I'm a huge fan of Raquel Bowman and could not go past the opportunity to scrap lift one of her Cocoa Vanilla layouts.  After a lot of indecision (there are WAY too many beautiful designs to choose from), I went with this one.  I love the clean lines and central design and thought it would suit my photos really well.

and here is my version of her design:

It was so fun to have a design to work with and not have to make too many decisions about what should go where, almost like a sketch!  It meant the page came together really quickly as well!

I began by adding the top and bottom strips of Artisan paper pieces to the Double Dot paper.  I've also added some layers of the Patchwork paper both the A and B sides, for a pop of pink and florals.  I did also use some basic white card stock from my stash.  I have mat my photos with the B side of the Double Dot paper, I so love this shade of mint green and added lots of stitched details.

I also had the idea to use the negative chipboard piece from the "Love You" sentiment from the chipboard accent stickers as my title. I felt it was a really good fit with the Scrap lifted design as I needed something quite large that would fit across the width of my photo and keep with the linear style of the page.  It was also a great way to get more out of the chipboard.  Do you use the negative pieces on your layouts?

Next I began work on the flower clusters to the left and right of the photo.  There are so many beautiful elements in the Wild At Heart ephemera pack it was so fun to layer them all up together.  I finished off the clusters with some flowers from the Free Spirit and Hello Lovely collections.  I have added quite a few more pieces than Raquel did, simply because I feel my style is more layered and I do love to add heaps of embellishments.  Even when scrap lifting, I think it's important to be true to what you like and make the borrowed design your own.

Have you seen the Rubber Charms?  There are so many embellishments in this collection and these are some of my favourites.  I selected out the 2 bright pink charms and made sure they found a spot on my page, I love them so much. 

A final close up of the divine typed sentiments from the Accessories Sticker Sheet - one of the most popular items in the collection because they are so useful.  They are currently out of stock on the Cocoa Vanilla Studios website, however,  I have seen these at some of our stockists, so if you come across them, snap them up!  Of course I have also finished the layout with some Wild at Heart enamel dots, and woodies from the Free Spirit collection.

I hope this inspires you to give scrap lifting a try, it's a fun and easy way to create a layout. Don't forget to sprinkle a little of your own style in too for a wonderful result.

Thanks for popping by
Gwen xo

Saturday, April 15, 2017

On Trend - Wreath Design page "You + Me" for D-lish April Cybercrop

Hi Everyone,

Here today to share my latest layout for the D-lish design team as part of my challenge for the April Cybercrop.  I have been itching to create a layout using a wreath design and I've seen a stack of late so I thought why not challenge myself to give one a go!  Hope you like my take....

The design for the page started with this beautiful cut file "Floral Wreath" by Neat N Crafty - as soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to use it for this challenge but as a twist, use the negative piece rather than the positive cut piece.  Don't worry, I saved that for another layout!  I have backed it with this divine floral paper from Kaisercraft.  Next up, I mounted my photo and decided where it should go.  I liked it on the left as hubby and I are more to the right in the picture.

Next, I decided to add the title underneath the photo and loved the idea of using some wooden elements.  I love the colour of these ones "all natural" and thought they were a great fit for the warm colours I already had going on.

To add interest and dimension to the wreath, I have fussy cut out some more flowers and layered them together.  I've also added some fabric flowers, fabric bows and the most divine resin flowers.  I have tried to cluster them loosely in three places around the wreath.  Repetition of the elements adds to a cohesive design... and I like groups of 3, they always look good. 

and there you have it... a pretty quick layout and not too much work once you get that cut file sorted.  So.. I've challenged myself, and now it's your turn... I'd love to to see what you create!

Thanks for popping by,
Gwen xo

Sunday, April 9, 2017

"My Happily Ever After" for D-lish Scraps

Hello everyone!!

Here today to share with you the April D-lish Inspiration Board - Have you seen it this month?

Ok, so when I saw this, my first thought was WOAH, it's pretty "boy" themed, my next thought was WOAH, it's pretty "cool" too!!  Two words I would not use to describe my creating style!  However, after some thought, and a little pep talk from myself to be open, try new things etc...(you know the one), I decided to give it go.  The result, I hope you'll agree is still very true to my style but is still in keeping with the Retro Revival Inspiration board.

I wasn't sure I would have a lot of choices from my stash in these colours, however, I went digging and I found this pretty Dear Lizzy pattern paper with red flowers all over it and immediately thought to fussy cut a stack of them out.  I also found this chipboard heart embellishment from the depths of my stash and the page was off to a start!  As I mentioned, I don't use a lot of these colours in my day-to-day scrapbooking so I don't have a stack of embellishments, but reminded myself, you can make a lot from a little if you get creative!!  I will add that there was a little bit of Pink in the pattern paper, just a touch, and I thought I'd get away with that!

Next, I pulled out my spray inks, I managed to find a dark blue, a light blue and a perfect shade of yellow.  I'm not hugely into mixed media so I just went at it little by little adding little splatters to the centre part of my page.   I kept building it up slowly but surely trying to keep it down the centre of the page leaving 3 inches each side (approximately) for white space.  Next, I spread the fussy cut flowers out over the splatters, placing them closer together near the centre and spreading out as they went down the page.

 Next, I added a few layers of paper under my photo to create a mat and of course added some stitching.  I then went about building my flower clusters to the left and right, starting with the largest of the fussy cut flowers, layering them up and I knew I had these super pretty yellow Fantasy Blooms to finish the clusters off which would be a perfect fit.  I so love how they pop off the page!

For my title, I used some dark blue alphas and stitched them on - you can find similar ones in the shop... here in red and here in royal blue.  I have also added some enamel dots, there's a stack in store and I find you can really never have too many of these!

To finish off the page, I added in a  Bitty Bow Clip on the top left-hand side of my photo and added in the Resin flowers lucky last - I use these a lot on my pages, they are a really nice finishing touch.

Products used:

thanks for  popping by,