Wednesday, March 20, 2013

ScrapCodes -- possibly the coolest new thing in scrapbooking...

Ooh, I have the coolest new thing to show you today!  ScrapCodes makes customizable QR code stickers that are fantastic for both traditional and digital scrapbooking.  If you have a smart phone, you are probably already familiar with the little square codes we're starting to see everywhere.  Advertisers use them all the time: "Scan this code for more information!"  You scan the little code with a smart phone, and you are whisked away to whatever information is locked into that code.

So now, brilliantly, we can do the same thing on our scrapbook pages!  You can link it to a picture slideshow (hello, perfect for those of us who take 700 pictures of a single event and somehow can't figure out how to cram them all onto a layout...), upload a video, record an audio message, write a note, or link it to a website.  For my first project, I linked my QR code to a YouTube video...

Last month my daughter, sister, mom and I took a little girls' trip to Los Angeles (to be on America's Funniest Home Videos, how crazy is that?!), and we took Eliza to the Santa Monica Pier.  She became instant best friends with a street performer named Lenny Hoops, who sang and danced with her for better than 10 minutes.  I posted a video with the best 3 1/2 minutes to YouTube.  The pictures are adorable, but I knew when I scrapped this event I had to include the video somehow to really tell the story.  I was just going to include the YouTube link in the journaling, but this is SO much better!

The QR code comes as a nice, sturdy clear sticker.  I mounted it to some white cardstock, then onto a washi tape covered tag.  Now anyone flipping through our Smash book from the trip can just whip out their phone to see the awesome video.  And you don't have to have a smart phone, either -- you can also type that little web address at the bottom, and it will take you to the same place!

These ScrapCodes stickers are pretty easy to use, too.  It took me a few minutes to download the app, get logged in, and figure out the best way to link up my video, but it the instructions were simple and thorough.  Anyone familiar with a smart phone could do it easily, and I think now that I am all set up and I know what I'm doing, setting each code up will take about a minute.

The only downside I can think of is that they aren't necessarily pretty.  I think the digital-y look works great with the edgier style of Smashbooking, but what about other styles?  The code could easily be affixed to a hidden tag or journaling spot, so that it's just out of view but totally available.

I am really excited about the multi-media possibilities offered with these new stickers.  I always have way more pictures than I can add to a page, or way too much journaling, or audio or video that I wish I could include.  Now I can!

Soon you'll be able to get your ScrapCodes stickers at their website, but you can snag some this weekend at ScrapbookUSA Expo!  The Expo is Friday and Saturday, and it is going to be a seriously good time.  Hope to see you there!  (I'll be wearing a pink Design Team t-shirt, so come say hi!)

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Washi Tape Monogram

Spring is just around the corner (thank heavens), and I'm starting to work on a little revamp for my entryway. My first project was this little monogram to sit on our entry table. It's a plain papier-mâché letter from Hobby Lobby dressed up with washi tape. The little flower is also made from washi tape, and I'd be happy to make a tutorial if anyone's interested.

This was a great project to break into my stash of washi tape. I'm sure I'm not the only one who has collected way more than I've ever used! If you're looking for affordable washi tape the best source I've found is Downtown Tape. They have dozens of different designs for two dollars a roll. You can find them online or they have a great booth at the ScrapbookUSA Expo at the end of this month.