Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Designer Showcase: Dimension/Texture without Bulk

Happy Wednesday!  It's Cathy here with you today to bring you this weeks Designer Showcase. Do you love to add texture to your layouts? But not like all the bulk that goes with it?  We've got a few ideas to share with you that add yummy texture, but keep your layouts on the then side, able to fit nicely in your albums.

Cindy created this really sweet page with some neat tricks to give it dimension. She used tone-on-tone to add dimension to the circles, banner, star and journaling. Gives a really nice deep look without the bulk. Nice, huh?

Check out this two pager. Cindy created a really deep look and gave lots of texture to this page by using a few well coordinated colors. She repeated the pattern at both ends of the page which gives both the look of depth, as well as the feel of texture. There is some hand stitching that really gives nice texture too.  Cindy calls herself a "bulk-phobe" (so cute!), she loves the look of dimension, but not the hassle of bulky layouts. So she finds lots of ways to trim down her layouts. The title on this one is made from chipboard letters. But, Cindy peeled off the bottom layers of them to make them thinner.  So cool!

Doesn't this page by Nancy look so rich and deep? It makes me just want to reach out and touch it! Nancy has some buttons and brads on her page, which area always a great way to add dimension to a page.  The real depth to this page is accomplished through the layering of the papers.  The patterns and colors play together nicely, and the really cool part is the bit of shape that Nancy added to them, She trimmed a pennant edge to the papers. Great way to add detail, dimension and texture to a layout, while still keeping it skinny!

If you've been following our blog, you know that Vicky is well known for you bulky textured dimensional beauties. She even came up with a layout that has lots of detail and texture without a lot of bulk.  Vicky used doilies as the background of your design. They add so much to the page. She also used some thin chipboard and die cuts too. By repeating the pattern of the doilies on teh page, Vicky has created dimension and texture and set up a visual stimulating page!

Lesley has some great techniques for for making your page textures without bulk.  She used a punch to create a border which gives the page intricate detail and texture. She added another border on the left side of the photo mat and ran that through her Cuttlebug to emboss it to give added dimension. Lesley added great dimension and detail to her background paper. It started out white, then she blended Pan Pastels and added some Glimmer Mist. What a great way to add the feel of texture without any bulk.  The title and verson on her page were added using stamps - another great way to add the look of layers and dimension as well as the feel of varying textures with no bulk at all!

Another tip that Lesley shared is that although this page appears to be 5 layers of paper, she actually cut away the hidden parts of paper behind each layer. Making her finish page only 1 paper of thickness!  Clever idea!  Plus you can then use those scraps for other projects!

Sometimes you might have a piece of memorabilia that you want to add that is bulky.  Like I did on this page. I wanted to include the cozy wrap from my coffee.  To keep the page from being too bulky, I carefully pulled apart the cozy and spread it across the page as a large element.  I also included a used gift card. By not layering my elements too much on top of each other, I was able to keep the page from getting too bulky. Ohhh, I used to love coffee. I gave it up cold-turkey 18 months ago.  Glad I made this page before I quit that habit!

Another way to keep your pages skinny is to make hybrid pages. By hybrid, I mean a combination of digital and traditional paper scrapping. That's how I created this page.  The background of this page was created digitally. It includes the large photo at the top merged on to the digital paper on the bottom with the honeycombs, "paint" spray, journaling, smaller photo and date.  I then printed that out as one piece of paper. I layered that on a 12x12 Kraft paper.   The only "bulk" to this page is the pocket that I created for the lower right corner. I again designed that digitally and printed it so it is one piece of paper. I then glued 3 sides of it to the lower layer. I was able to stuff our tickets and wrist bands from this great exhibit into the pocket and still was able to place this layout inside a sleeve in my album. Sorry the photo is so wobbly. I was laid up following surgery when I finished this and actually took the photo while it was laying on my lap!

We would be remiss if we didn't mention digital scrapping as a way to accomplish dimension, and texture without bulk. I created this layout completely digitally.  I created a lot of layers on this page and used elements that have the look of rich grungy, and sharp textures.  The secret to getting this look digitally is playing with shadows.

We hope we've given you a few ideas on how to help your pages lose the bulk, but not the look!


  1. You totally fooled me with that last LO being digital. When it first appeared, I thought now how can anyone think this doesn't have a lot of bulk? If I did digital this is how I would want my LOs to look. . . just like tactile ones.

  2. Great pages and tips! I've never done any digital pages (as I love paper too much and don't want to spend any extra time at a computer), but the main reason I'd ever consider it is to eliminate the bulk while maintaining the look.