Destashing Your Space – Questions to Ask

It’s a great time of year to take stock of your craft space. We are gearing up for a busy crafting season, and if you are like me, you have been acquiring quite a few new craft supplies in preparation for this fun time of year. So, before the end of the month (it’s getting close!), I challenge you to do a destash of your creative space. I know I am going to be doing one! Here are some questions to ask yourself as you are sorting through your craft supplies:

Does it work?

You would be shocked at how many craft supplies might be in your space that no longer work. The obvious culprits are supplies that can be used up: inks, paints, watercolors, pens, markers, etc. Not only do these supplies dry up, but they can also go bad. We are talking weird smells, mold, etc. Super gross for sure. Definitely check on those supplies first! But, there are other supplies that can stop working. Cutting tools that can’t be sharpened, papers that have faded, and stickers that have lost their stick. And, did you know that washi tape can go bad after some time? It’s true, it can completely lose its stick and even start to smell. Time to give all of your supplies a test run and toss out things that are not working optimally!

Does this supply “fit” with my current hobbies?

We evolve as crafters. Sometimes our tastes change and sometimes our hobbies change. Every now and then, I like to take stock of my craft room to see if the supplies I am storing really have purpose in my current hobbies. From the wood-burning phase that I went through to the dimensional flowers that I used to use all the time, there are a few items that I have tossed because I just don’t use them anymore. Just because I loved them at one time does not mean I have to love it forever! Take some time to list out your current hobbies and then make sure your supplies relate to those directly.

Does it fit in my space?

The truth is, we can’t house every single craft supply that we fall in love with. Eventually, we are maxed out on space. I like to use smaller containers to contain my supplies. When those containers are full, it’s time to destash. For instance, I use acrylic drawers for my washi tape, and clear containers to hold my stamp collection. Both have reached their max, so it is definitely time for me to go through them and clear out the pieces that I am not using anymore.

Did you buy it because you love it or because it was a good deal?

We have all fallen victim to the classic stock-up sale! You see some great deals on craft supplies, and it seems like a crime to not pick up them up. But, once they are in your space, they kind of lose their luster. Just because you got a great deal on a supply or tool does not mean you have to keep it! Keep what you love, ditch the rest!

Does USING it bring you joy?

Notice that I emphasized the word “using” in that question. Sometimes owning a craft supply can totally bring us joy. But, if it deserves a spot in our craft space, then we really have to enjoy using the craft supply. Use it or lose it totally applies here. Use what is in your space. If you aren’t using it, it is time to get rid of it! Don’t just admire your craft supplies and craft tools – pull them out and use them…make something fun!

Are you ready to take on the challenge? Time to set aside some time in the next couple of weeks to get your craft space in shape for the beginning of crafting season! And, let me know how it goes!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Upcoming Projects!

The leaves are starting to turn colors, the air is a bit cooler outside, and crafting season is kicking up into high gear! When the seasons change, that always signals the return of some of my favorite annual projects, so I thought that I would share with you a few projects that I am looking forward to over the next couple of months.

Gratitude Documented

Gratitude Documented is a project hosted by Illustrated Faith every November. It has taken many different forms in the past, but essentially we will be spending the month connecting gratitude to Bible verses and reflecting on all the amazing blessings we experience. In the past, I have worked through this daily project in my Bible, created traveler’s notebooks, and even created 30 separate faith dex cards to document this study. I have not decided exactly how I plan to work through the study this year, but I have already started to gather seasonal supplies. Stay tuned for upcoming videos all about getting started with Gratitude Documented! Until I get a jump on this year, here is a peek at Gratitude Documented from the past:

Project Gr8tful

Two gratitude projects in one month? Yes, please! November will also kick off Project Gr8tful, another gratitude centered project available through Illustrated Faith. This one is put together by Kelly Bangs and Larissa Traquair, a dynamic team of ladies that have terrific hearts. This will be the second year of Project Gr8tful, and this time around the month of November is simply the launching point for a year full of gratitude. Larissa has written a short devotional for each month of the year, and Kelly Bangs has put together some gorgeous illustrations to help us work through the project in a creative way. The basic premise is to identify three things we are grateful for each and every day, but the larger vision is to connect that gratitude to our faith and to let it permeate how we live our daily lives. I have already begun prepping for Project Gr8tful, and you can check out that video here:

December Daily

December Daily is a project designed by Ali Edwards that has really taken over the scrapbook community the last few years. Because December tends to be such a busy time, full of traditions and fun, the idea is to document all of these special memories in one place. I have participated in this project for the past few years, documenting in mini-albums all the goings-on of my family in the month of December. I have used Felicity Jane December kits in the past, but this year, I decided to go in a different direction. I will still be using a mini album approach, but just trying a different line this year. Check out a couple of videos I have on December Daily:

Holiday Crafting

And last but not least, with some of my favorite holidays coming up like Thanksgiving and Christmas, there will inevitably be holiday crafting that goes along with those days. I am pumped to decorate my craft space for Christmas this year, and perhaps to even try my hand at making a few Christmas Cards. Plus, I have dreams of a gratitude display for my whole family to participate in this year. So many fun possibilities!

What crafting projects do you have lined up for this fall and winter? Are you going to try anything new? I would love to hear from you in the comments below!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Picking Out a New Art Journal

I am just about to do the last couple of layouts in my latest art journal, and I am so excited about wrapping up this book! This one has been a long time in the making. It has taken me nearly two years to work through this particular art journal and it has presented many challenges along the way. The Dina Wakley mixed media journal has many different kinds of pages inside, almost like a junk journal feel. The burlap and denim were particularly challenging for me to work with, but I have definitely learned a lot along the way.

Now is the exciting time when I get to search for and choose a new art journal, and there are many choices out there. I thought I’d share a few of the journals I was considering and see if you all had any thoughts or opinions before I make a final choice. Leave me a comment below and let me know what you would like to see me work in!

Ranger Ink – Dylusions Classics Journal

Okay, so this one is pretty cool because it offers a variety of different papers inside, including Kraft, black, and white. It will provide the challenge of working with different backgrounds without being quiet as challenging as the denim and burlap that I have just wrapped up. I am a big fan of the Dylusions brand in general (as you can see from all the choices I have listed!), so I know that the paper should hold up pretty well to what I have to throw at it.

Dylusions Creative Journal

This one would fee a bit more like a “back to the basics” art journal. All the pages are white, which can be a real positive, because you can have freedom to do pretty much whatever you want to do! This book lays very flat, which is ideal for art journaling of course! Plus, I could easily customize the cover with whatever I wanted once I was done working in the book. This has the feel of the first art journal that I completed, so it definitely feels comfortable and like coming home.

Dylusions Creative Journal Square

This one is exactly like the standard Creative Journal, but as the name suggests, it is square. A wonderful subscriber of mine actually sent me a square black Creative Journal, and the size is very intriguing to me. It definitely makes you look at a spread differently because of how elongated the double spread feels. I think this would provide an interesting challenge.

Dylusions Dyalog System

This would be VERY different. The Dyalog system is basically a traveler’s notebook system. The books come in a large variety from blank, grid dot, lined, and even black pages. These can definitely be used for art journaling, but would be conducive to more intricate pages since it is on a smaller scale. It would definitely force me to take my art journaling skills out of their typical box and try some new things in the small format. It would be a challenge!

So, what do you think? Should I continue pushing outside my comfort zone, or go back to a book that feels a little more familiar? How far do I want to push? So many things to consider! Let me know your opinions below!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

The Happy Planner Squad 2021-2022

The past week has been quite a whirlwind! On Monday, August 9th, the brand new Happy Planner Squad was announced for 2021-2022, and you guys, I am a member of the squad! I am completely BLOWN away with excitement. I am so thankful for all the words of encouragement and congratulations that I have received this week. I’ll be honest, I have had some mixed feelings. While I was feeling honored and excited, I also knew that there were others who were hurt because they were not selected this time around. It is so very hard to apply for something that you are really dreaming of and then not get chosen. Trust me, I definitely understand. I have applied to many creative teams that have not chosen me. I’ve applied for Felicity Jane three separate times and never even received an email thanking me for applying. It hurts and it is disappointing. All I can say is that I am so thankful for each and every person that is part of this big creative community. We all have something to add, whether we are on a team or not. We need YOU here, so please keep showing up!

I have had several questions about Squad, so I thought I would answer a few of them over here on my blog. If you have any more questions (or comments!) feel free to leave me a comment down below!

What is the Happy Planner Squad?

The Happy Planner Squad is made up of all kinds of creatives from around the world that have a passion for planning. We basically serve as brand ambassadors for our term. The Happy Planner sends us supplies and new releases so that we can promote those products and show how we plan to use them. The Squad this year is made up of 26 squad members and 4 mentors that guide us and give us advice. Another change this year is that we will be receiving payment in addition to products.

Why did you apply for the Happy Planner Squad?

I always have a lot of different creative projects going on at one time. I love creative journaling, memory keeping, and Bible journaling. But, in the past 18 months or so, my passion for decorative planning has grown exponentially. I love planning, working in my planners, trying new planners, and just all the parts of this awesome creative outlet. The Happy Planner is a company I admire, and I really love their products. One of my 2021 goals was to apply for the Happy Planner Squad because I wanted the opportunity to really grow in that area of my creativity. I feel like I have a lot to share, and I feel like there is so much to learn from the planning community.

How did you apply?

The application process this year consisted of a written application and a 1 minute video. Here is the video that I submitted:

How many times have you applied to be on the Happy Planner Squad?

This was the first time I applied, and I know that I am beyond lucky to have been chosen. I am forever grateful for this opportunity.

Does this mean that you are only going to be doing planner content this year?

Nope! You may see an increase in planner content over here and on my YouTube channel, but I am not limited to only planner content. Truthfully, it’ll just mean that I am filming more of what I have been doing in my own creative time this past year. I will still be doing plenty of Bible journaling, art journaling, organization, and shopping videos. An exciting new edition to the channel will be unboxing and new releases from the Happy Planner!

Do you have a Happy Planner affiliate link?

Yes, I do! If you love the Happy Planner like I do, or maybe you are just interested in seeing what all they offer, I do have an affiliate link. You can find it here:

The Happy Planner

Alright, I think that is most of the questions I have been asked! Again, I feel so humbled to be a part of this group of creatives. Thank you to all of YOU for your support over the past 2.5 years as I’ve been running this blog and posting over on YouTube. All of your comments mean a lot, and I love that I’ve built some great friendships online. I’m really looking forward to what this next year will hold!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Creative Time Management

Probably the number one question that I am asked on my YouTube channel is how I find the time to complete all of the different projects that I post.  It isn’t easy for sure, but I do manage to fit in a good amount of creative time into my weekly schedule despite having elementary aged kids at home over the summer.  No, I do not have an amazing miracle way that you can create more hours in your day.  But I thought I would share a little insight into how I manage my time, when I plan for my creative time, and how I make creativity a priority without shortchanging my family.

Getting my planning on!

I must first preface this all by making two statements:

  1. Creating content is my job.  I absolutely have to make time to create new projects every week and to film those projects or else I would have no new videos to release.  And as a YouTube content creator, I do not continue making money if I am not also continually releasing new content.  It is how the algorithm works, so I stay on top of it.  That being said, the actual creating is probably about 20% of the effort that goes into a typical video.  Once the creative project is complete there is photography to be done, editing and voice-overs, uploading and formatting, searching for product links, scheduling, and maintaining social media accounts so subscribers will know when new videos have been released.
  2. I do not always finish all my projects in a timely manner. Sometimes, I do not finish them at all.  That’s just how it happens when there are constantly new projects vying for my attention.  It is important to me to be authentic when sharing online.  If I am behind on a project or haven’t fully completed one, I like to share that.  Sometimes I can get caught up and other times I just have to let expectations go.  It happens to all of us!

Tips for Managing Creative Time

Tip #1 – Wake up earlier in the day to make time for your creativity.  For me, that means waking up at 5am most days.  With kids at home, this is my best chance to find a little bit of actual quiet time!  Generally, I wake up at 5am (with an alarm…don’t get crazy!), make coffee, and then head into my creative space for Bible study.  No craft supplies necessary.  I work through my Bible reading for the day, do a little bit of prayer journaling, and usually wrap up all of that around 6am.  Time to get creative!

Tip #2 – Choose a recurring project that starts your day but is not difficult.  Around 6am most days you can find me sitting at my desk working in my creative journal.  This journal has very few rules.  Sometimes I paint or get a bit more involved, but most days I am sticking stickers down, playing with pen colors, and topping it all off with washi.  You may have seen some of my morning journaling videos over on YouTube.  This practice helps spark my creativity for the day and also calms my brain a bit as the day gets going.  It is something that feels very natural because I have been doing it since the beginning of 2021.  Maybe creative journaling isn’t your thing.  Maybe you would prefer to work on a simple devotional like the 100 Days of Prayer first thing in the morning.  Maybe you want to do 3 row of crochet and call it a morning.  Perhaps you want to set aside 15 minutes each morning to print out pictures to scrap later, or to put stickers down in your planner.  Whatever creative practice you want to do, keep it simple and keep it consistent.  15 minutes is more than enough time to get a little creative energy flowing into your day.

Tip #3 – Take a mid-day creative break.  This is a new practice for me!  Generally, I record video in the mornings (early), and then break around 8am to take kids to camp or the pool or whatever activity is going on that day, and then return to editing those videos just after lunch time while my kiddos work in some quiet time. I work off and on until it is time to make dinner, getting as much done as my kids allow.  I used to save all my personal creative time for when I went to bed, but honestly was too exhausted most evenings to work on my own projects.  So, I decided to change it up!  Now I take a creative break in the middle of the day.  I reserve 20-30 minutes right after lunch to work on a project of my choice.  I do this even with a hefty to-do list looming over my head.  It has been so uplifting to know that I have this little break to look forward to each day, and generally it gives me an energy lift going into my afternoon work session.  I realize that this may be hard to do if you are working in a traditional office setting, but maybe you reserve the first 30 minutes when you get home from work for a creative push.  Do it before the dishes and before the laundry.  Limit the time and prioritize the activity!!

Tip #4 – Take note of the creative energy needed to work on a project.  Projects that are going to take more focus and thought need to be put at a time in the day when you actually have the energy to put into it.  By the time it gets to 7pm I am completely spent most days.  Often, I feel like the creativity is drained from me.  I tend to save easier projects or tasks like fussy cutting, decorating my planners, or coloring for the evening times.  There is zero chance that I will have the creative energy to construct a mini album from scratch at 8pm at night.  Nope, never going to happen.  I realize that is not the case for all people.  Rank your projects and place them at a time of the day that works with your brain!

Tip #5 – Make a plan and stick to it (as best you can!).  Consistency can actually breed creativity.  That might sound counter-intuitive, but I really think it is true.  Look at your week or month and schedule your creative time in advance.  Look forward to it!  Stick to your schedule!  Be consistent!  The more you do this, the more likely it is that your brain will be triggered as your approach those times of the day or month.  Of course, life happens, and schedules do not always stay the same.  It happens to all of us.  If you miss a creative date, that’s okay, get back on schedule as soon as you can.  You deserve to make your creativity a priority.  Carving out 30 minutes in a day is not selfish!

Tip #6 – Creativity on the go!  All my kids participate in sports. They also participate in Scouts.  They also have a million doctor and dentist appointments sometimes.  There is always a place we need to be followed by a million more places on the list.  I can’t really abandon them for my own personal creative time, because they deserve to get to participate in the activities they are passionate about as well.  Plus, they can’t drive!  So, I have several bags ready to throw in the car for creativity on the go.  Nothing complicated, but I can enjoy lettering practice while sitting at the soccer field.  Or I can work in my Cutie Keeper while they are enjoying swim lessons.  I do not have to sit idly by at all their practices and events, and I do not have to waste time on my phone either.  I bring my creativity with me!

Yes, managing your creative time can be difficult.  We all go through seasons of life when it feels next to impossible to carve out a little time to get creative, but it can be done!  It is not going to just happen by accident, no matter what stage of life you are in.  Be thoughtful about how you use your time, and you might just discover opportunities throughout your day to get your creativity flowing.

Keep it creative,

The Scrappy Wife

Why I Love Planning!

Don’t let my large collection of stickers fool you, I still feel a bit like a newbie when it comes to planning. (I’m an expert shopper though, hence the large collection of stickers!). I’ve always had a paper planner, and loved the feeling of being organized, but it wasn’t until the past year or so that decorative planning really grabbed my heart. It has become a HUGE creative outlet for me, and I am so thankful for the community I have found with fellow planners. Truthfully, I feel like “planner babes” are one of the most welcoming creative groups I have ever been a part of!

My planner journey started oddly enough at a PTA meeting. I brought my brightly colored planner with me to the meeting, but there wasn’t really much to it at that time. Maybe some colored pens and a small handful of stickers but not much else. However, it was enough to catch the eye of another mom who was sitting nearby. During the meeting, she leaned over and whispered, “Are you into planning?” A little surprised, I glanced over at her table and noticed a colorful planner and planner pouch sitting neatly in front of her. A planner friendship was born! It turned out that this mom was already meeting up with another mom that was into planning, and they invited me to come along. It actually took me a few months to say yes (hello, introvert!), but once I did, I loved it! And we even recruited a couple of other moms that had never placed a sticker in their lives, and who now gossip about all the planner sales with us! It turns out that planning led me to a beautiful, authentic group of moms who I truly don’t think I could do without!

That journey is what brought me to planners, but a whole new world of planners opened up to me once I started using Happy Planners. I had no idea that there were planners for all the things. My Type-A personality lit up! I now have planners for my everyday life, my business life, my faith life, my memory keeping, my mental health, and so much more. There is something about tracking your life and documenting it, about planning big things and little things, about filling your planner with inspiring quotes and soothing colors. It makes me so happy, and I am proud to say that I am a planner addict!

Several people have reached out to ask what my typical planning week looks like, so I thought I’d share a little. Throughout the week, I work on pre-planning in one planner type every day. The schedule looks a little like this:

  • Monday – Memory Planning
  • Tuesday – Faith Planning
  • Wednesday – Wellness Planning
  • Thursday – Catch-All Planner
  • Friday – Work Planner

I decorate each of those planners throughout the week, and then generally spend time on Sunday afternoon filling in the planners with the plans for the coming week. Every morning, the first planner I work in is my Faith Planner, which I write in during morning quiet time. After that I check in with my work planner and my catch-all planner to see what is coming up for the day. At lunch, I sit down with my wellness planner for a few minutes. And in the evenings, I usually check back in with my catch-all planner, fill out some gratitude notes, and then decide if I need to fill out a daily page for the next day. The evening is also the time when I work in my lettering planner, practicing some daily lettering. It may sound like a lot, but all of these have become a part of my routine, and I love it!

So, yes, I have a lot of planners and yes, I love working in my planners. They have helped me to keep all the things organized, set and accomplish goals, make some life-long friends, and connect with a whole new community that I didn’t even know existed. I am loving planning and will be continuing to share planning videos on my channel, because hey, that’s what I’m excited about these days! I’d love to hear if you are a planner and what your planning story is. Let me know in the comments below!

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

Finding a Crafty Community

If we have learned anything in the past year, it is that community is so important. Finding a community of people to do life with, to share experiences with, to agree and then disagree with, to watch out for you, and to encourage you is vital to to full life! As a YouTube creator, and actually as a crafter in general, I spend so much of my time alone. I work out of my house, spending hours every day filming and editing. Crafters tend to like being near our supplies. Crafting and creating is how we unwind, and that is often done in the comfort of our own creative spaces. As an introvert, that is usually just fine with me. Plus, let’s be honest, community felt scary in the past year. Even when you put aside the pandemic, there were the mine fields of politics and social upheaval that caused a great deal of tension and insecurity. We wondered if we would be loved and accepted for who we are, and that is a scary thing to overcome.

However, in the past few months, I have had the feeling that something is missing. It’s been lonely in my craft room, and I found myself longing for community even more. I certainly have friends that love crafting just as much as I do, and I am super thankful for them. But, I wanted to meet new people, have some new experiences, and plug in to a larger crafter community. This desire was pulling at my heart strings a lot at the beginning of 2021, and I think that I am probably not alone. So many of us are desperate for connection. And yes, I feel like true connections can be forged even through simple shared experiences like crafting together!

I’ve tried a few different ways to find these type of connections, and there are certainly a lot of options out there. The groups I have found certainly are not an exhaustive list, but they are the groups that are bringing me a lot of joy these days!

Scrappy Besties

I had no idea that when I started a YouTube membership program a few months ago, that I would find such a wonderful group of women to connect with. Yes, my subscribers are all awesome and uplifting, but I had no idea what it would be like to connect over Zoom. I am obviously much more used to filming, receiving comments, and responding to them as often as I could. What would it be like to speak in real time? I’ll be honest I was so nervous! And, to be extra honest, I still have a little bit of anxiety before our meetings every other week, but that is because social anxiety will always be a part of my life. Despite my anxious feelings though, I have thoroughly enjoyed connecting with these ladies over Zoom. We talk, we craft, we talk some more. We laugh and share fun stories and commiserate with each other as well. In just a few months, I would truly say this has become a wonderful circle of crafty friends!

Fearless Foundations

I am not sure that there is anything like a shared experience to bring people together, even if that shared experience is online. In the month of May, I participated in Fearless Foundations, taught by Shawna Clingerman. This online class included a mixture of pre-recorded lessons, Facebooks lives (with tons of interaction in the comments) and Zoom calls where this amazing group of women from all over of the world connected over the feelings and emotions that we were sorting through. We cheered each other on, cried for each other, and prayed for each other. We sat together (over Zoom) through some difficult moments, and laughed hysterically at some crazy moments as well. It was a super cathartic experience, and a wonderful reminder that we all have so much in common!

The Legitist Retreat Evah

There is truly nothing like meeting a person face to face, getting to hear their voices, give them hugs, laugh over silly jokes, and sing songs together. I had never been to an in-person craft retreat before I headed to Kansas in June. I went to the Whatever Craft House at the invitation of Kelly Bangs, as a member of her Illustrated Faith Creative Team. She and her bestie, Paula G., had the desire to pull together all of the ladies on Kelly’s various creative teams, and allow them to meet in person, craft together, and relax for a weekend at one of the most perfect houses in the country. I was incredibly nervous to go. Like sick to my stomach nervous! (See my comment about social anxiety above.). I had never met any of these ladies in person, and I had the classic worries that they would find me boring or lacking in some way. What if I gave a bad impression and nobody wanted to talk to me?

Well, it turns out that I had absolutely nothing to worry about. These women were warm and welcoming. We were able to break the ice over a shared love of rainbows and vintage details. We all oohed and awed over each other’s craft projects all weekend long. Conversations came easily. This was a group of women from all over the country, different ages and different life stages. There were different views within the group of course, but there wasn’t any judgement. There was love and appreciation for the other women there. I left with my heart so very full! It turns out that in-person retreats do really make a difference. It can be expensive to travel of course, but I can guarantee that the Legistist Craft Retreat Evah certainly won’t be my last retreat!

Fussy Cuttin’ Cuties

As a result of hanging out with all of those amazing ladies in Kansas, I ended up joining the Fussy Cuttin’ Cuties. This is an online group run by Paula G and Kelly B that bonds over their shared love of crafting all the things and of course their love of the cute sayings that come from Paula G! This group has been around for about a year, and I had considered joining earlier, but something held me back. I was nervous about adding another project to my very full plate and feeling obligated to attend things that I didn’t have the time or energy for. It turns out that I completely missed the point! Yes, there are super cute printables and projects to do each month. Yes, there are online group activities that you are able to participate in on a regular basis. But, it isn’t about checking boxes and completing “assignments”. There is not grade at the end of each month. What you do find is a loving community of women. They post craft related content, but also share fun tidbits about their lives. They pray for each other and cry with each other when times are tough. They cheer on their fellow cuties who are stepping outside their comfort zones and starting new projects or new ventures. They laugh…a lot! I’ve only been in the group for a few weeks, and it has already brought me so much joy!

So, why am I sharing these things with you? First, I just wanted to put out my gratitude for these groups into the universe. It always feels so great to focus on the positive things that have happened in your life, and finding great friends is certainly something to celebrate! Secondly, I want to encourage you to put yourself out there and try to build some connections. I get the introverted thing, trust me. But, there is definitely something to be gained from connecting with others. And, personally, I feel like crafty people are the best people.

Keep it creative,

-The Scrappy Wife

The Whatever Craft House

Last weekend, I had the privilege to visit the happiest place on earth. And no, I don’t mean Disney World. I went to a small town in Kansas and stayed three nights at the Whatever Craft House. Located in Newton, Kansas, a charming town filled with antique shops and vintage details, the Whatever Craft House is a vintage craftsman house that stands on an unassuming corner lot. It has a beautiful exterior that is quite stately, but that is nothing compared to the interior!

The Whatever Craft House is named after Philippians 4:8

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.”

Philippians 4:8, NIV

The entire house is filled with details and touches of joy. Rainbows are absolutely everywhere. The bright colors are intermingled with gorgeous vintage details like ceiling beams and leaded glass windows. The house has a huge renovated kitchen, perfect for preparing meals and eating as a large group, which we did most days. The highlights of the kitchen are the “Whatever Is” sign that sets the tone for the entire house and the rack of rainbow mugs. There are so many gorgeous mugs that it is really hard to decide which one to use each day! I chose to change it up every day…there is nothing like delicious coffee out of a fun rainbow mug.

The living room was anchored by two large vintage couches and fun handmade pillows that brought in more pops of color. There were also several fun nooks where you could curl up for a bit of quiet time or to just sit and take in the beauty around you. I loved the pin map marked with small flags representing all of the people that had visited the Whatever Craft House previously. I had the honor of adding my own little pin! It’s so fun to see how this house has been treasured by other craft-loving ladies from around the country.

Large craft tables were set up in an adjacent room, and that is where we spent the majority of the weekend. The big open room allowed us to all be together, laughing and crafting away. We shared far too many fun moments to count, most of the time listening to some great classic tunes and singing right along as a group. Once again, the detail put into the decor was absolutely perfect. A beautiful mantel, perfect for displaying our projects had a big presence in the room. Artwork on the walls was bright and colorful, and the tables were set with vintage lamps to provide extra light for working late. Being a group of documenters, we quickly began discovering the best light throughout the whole house and would stage pictures throughout the day to capture that perfect light!

Upstairs consisted of 4 bedrooms, all beautifully adorned with vintage beds covered in colorful quilts. It felt like a fun sleepover every night! The wooden stair case and floors may creak a little, but that only adds to the charm of the house. My favorite feature of the upstairs was the 1903 detail added into the landing. So lovely, and oh so perfect for taking pictures.

And then, of course, there are the rainbow stairs. It’s hard to really describe how excited I was to see the rainbow stairs in person. I’ve actually had a picture of these exact stairs on my vision board for the past two years. They are just a set of back stairs beautifully painted in a rainbow color, but to me they represent so much more. To me, they represent so much creativity and light. They’ll always remind me of the time I took a little time for myself and was rewarded with new friends and inspiring experiences. I love those rainbow stairs, and I’ll be treasuring my pictures on those stairs forever!

It’s certainly never easy to take the time or the money to participate in a craft retreat. This was actually my very first one, but I can promise you that it will not be my last. If you ever get the opportunity to visit the magical Whatever Craft House, please jump on that chance! I promise you will not regret it!

Keep it creative,

The Scrappy Wife

Creativity on the Go – Packing for a trip!

Big news – I am going on a crafting retreat! I am so excited to be traveling to the Whatever Craft House soon for a crafting retreat, but I am also a bit anxious about it. I always bring creative tools with me whenever I travel. Mostly because, one of the ways I unwind is to spend a little time getting creative. And, how am I supposed to enjoy a vacation if I am not bringing along at least a little of my favorite hobby?!? “Have craft supplies, will travel” is kind of my motto!

Packing for a retreat of this type can be hard, especially when you are doing it for the first time, which I am. Yup, you read that right. I have never before in my life been on a craft retreat. I’ve done a one day Bible journaling retreat before, but a friend and I ran that, so the packing was certainly a bit different. It’s hard to know what to bring and just how much of it I need to bring. I am flying, so that certainly limits me. I don’t want to run out of projects to work on, but this is also supposed to be a time to relax and rest, so there is no need to pack an entire month’s worth of projects into a long weekend. Choices, choices, choices!

Before I started my packing list, I decided to start by listing out the projects I might want to work on. My thought is that I want to do a couple of lighter projects that can be done while visiting with others and enjoying their company. I am not sure that bringing my full Illustrating Bible would be a good idea, and I truthfully prefer to Bible journal by myself where I can get lost in thought. I am also trying to consider what tools I might need for my projects. I’m obviously not going to pack my full Cricut for the trip, so cutting vinyl and other Cricut-required projects will definitely be out. I’d love to work on some art journaling, but I will have to be a bit strategic about that since I can’t very well bring my entire collection of mixed media supplies with me. So, I spent some time brainstorming the projects that I would like to bring along.

My next step (can you tell I’m such a planner?!?) was to list out the supplies that I would need for each of those projects. This gave me a better idea of the amount of craft items that I needed or wanted to bring. I looked at some of the basics like adhesive, scissors, pens, etc. and made sure that I had a good amount that would last me the entire weekend. As I began to list out supplies, I also kept in the back of my mind the size of each supply or grouping of supplies. This was good info to have so that I could consider what bags I would be bringing!

Speaking of bags, I was SO tempted to purchase a new crafting bag for this trip. I was considering pick up the We R Memory Keepers backpack or also found a planner bag that I thought would work really well. But, I resisted the urge to purchase something new, knowing that I had lots of different bags in my stash. Surely I can make one of those work!

Now that I have a craft packing list, I plan on starting to gather supplies together this weekend before I head out. I will stick to one color way or color scheme when it comes to my art supplies. This will help me limit the amount of paints, etc. that I need to bring, and help me focus a little more once I get to crafting! Here’s hoping that all my supplies fit in my bags!

Have you ever been on a craft retreat? What would be on your craft packing list? Or do you have any tips for traveling with your creative supplies? I really think that making a plan helps out with packing, and I follow a similar method anytime I am traveling with my supplies. Be sure to leave me some comments below with your tips and must-haves!

Keep it creative,

The Scrappy Wife