Summer Voices | Catherine Davis


We’re on summer holiday and we’ve invited some of our friends to share their voices and projects here over the next 2 weeks. Say hello to Catherine Davis:

I have piles of stuff. Piles. As a memory keeper, it's hard for me let things go. My twin daughters' preschool projects and artwork are at the top of this list. The thought of getting rid of these reminders of such a fleeting time makes my chin start to wobble.

Earlier this year, I took the bull by the horns and designed a scrapbook layout that helped kickstart some pile control. I'm happy to be here on Ali's blog to share a bit about recording the stuff of life.


PULLING IT TOGETHER |  I picked out some of my favorite things the girls have made at school and shot pictures of them with my iPhone. You can also use a scanner, but this was quick and easy for me. Once I imported the images into Photoshop, I cropped them to fit 3x4 cards. I also punched up the contrast and brightness in Photoshop to make the colors pop.

I attached the printed images to 3x4 cards from a Studio Calico Project Life Kit (February's Neverland Kit) and attached them to the page with foam dots and mini clothespins. I kept the rest of the layout super simple with a bit of washi and some stamping to make the art stand out. (More Studio Calico supplies, from the Neverland Scrapbook Kit.)

This approach is perfect for bulkier projects, like the pom pom art I used below. Guess where that paper is now? Recycled. Fist pump!


TEMPLATE DOWNLOAD | I've created a basic 8.5x11 layered template to simplify the image resizing process for you. Each box is sized at 2x3, perfect to pop on 3x4 cards to add to a layout or your Project Life album. You need Photoshop or Photoshop Elements to open and edit this file. Download the template here.


You could apply this concept to any kind of memento you'd like to remember, but don't want to physically hold onto and store. I've also done layouts around my girls' shoes and toys.


ONE MORE THING | A side note on school papers I wanted to share. On the last day of preschool this year, our teachers presented us with the tidiest, personalized binders of work collected throughout the year. My reaction went something along the lines of, "You don't understand, THIS. IS. AMAZING." Another nice idea for preserving those memories you can't part with.


ABOUT CATHERINE | Catherine Davis has been hooked on design since she was 16, mocking up layouts for her high school yearbook. Fast forward from that design "job" to her grownup career designing newspapers, including a gig at one of the best designed in the world. Her big Oprah Aha! moment came when she discovered that scrapbooking could combine her love of documentation, design and photography with her favorite subjects: her husband Jim and their three-year-old twins, Maggie and Charlotte. You can catch up with Catherine on her blog Design Editor, where you can find creative inspiration, tips and tutorials, and crafty ideas.
CONNECT WITH CATHERINE | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram




Paper Source is a premier paperie and online retailer offering a unique selection of fine and artisanal papers, invitations and announcements, personalized and distinctive gifts, gift wrap, greeting cards, custom stamps, and a custom collection of envelope and cards. Paper Source offers an original aesthetic, with a color palette and proprietary designs that are developed and created exclusively by us.


11 thoughts

  1. [email protected]

    2013-08-14 07:26:03 -0400

    This post came at the perfect time for me. I am starting to organize my daughters' artwork (from the past few years today, long overdue). Using the iPhone is agood idea because it is so quick. Lovely layout.

  2. Kelly Jean

    2013-08-14 07:30:36 -0400

    I really love this idea! I don't have kids yet but will definitely keep this in mind for when I do.

  3. Natalie @ Architect MAMA

    2013-08-14 08:02:29 -0400

    So happy to see this Design Editor project. Always fresh, colorful, and fun with a crazy good eye for design. I really needed some ideas for storing my daughter's art and 3x4 size is perfect for adding to my PL album.

  4. Tracy

    2013-08-14 08:20:43 -0400

    Thanks for the template Catherine. I wish I would have know about doing this when my "adult" children were young...I'm like you I have many years of school papers because I kept everything. Slowly, I've been working on school the idea of taking pictures of their art work. My problem is there are a few papers that weren't put in the correct school year folder and there are no dates written on them. I tell every teacher I please have the students write the date on their papers. And that binder the preschool teacher made is AWESOME!! Thanks!

  5. Alida

    2013-08-14 10:05:04 -0400

    You have great style, Catherine. Must say I also prefer photographing kids art over scanning it in. Love the lay-out!

  6. Debbie

    2013-08-14 10:07:29 -0400

    Thank you so much for sharing your ideas! My daughter is in the fifth grade now and I have tubes for each school year. I can begin the process of scrapbooking these treasures. I love the pieces so much its difficult to part with them. The reality of K-12 tubes stacked up is daunting!!! Thank you!! Thank you!!

  7. jamaica

    2013-08-14 11:52:24 -0400

    LOVE the look of the artwork scaled down on the PL cards. So great. I don't have any littles art but maybe I could borrow it for my own project. Awesome, Catherine!

  8. Jennifer K

    2013-08-14 12:35:38 -0400

    Love how you're doing this. I was doing something similar with my boys' art and school projects, but didn't get very far. Need to get back to it. Thanks for the reminder and inspiration!

  9. Jacenda G.

    2013-08-14 12:39:23 -0400

    Perfect! I have piles of schoolwork (I have a 7th grader and a 2nd grader-just imagine the papers!) and feel the same way. Can't keep it all I say, so photos are the perfect solution. Now just to get the photos onto a layout. Lovely designs and thanks for the freebie!

  10. Chris-Ellyn

    2013-08-14 16:11:11 -0400

    Wow! What a forehead slapping moment! :-)
    I just scanned a pom-pom art and was so dissatisfied with the results. Thanks so much for the idea and the freebie!

  11. Melinda T

    2013-08-14 22:21:14 -0400

    Thanks for the template and for sharing the ideas!

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