Sunday, 29 August 2010

I Ain't Gonna Stop the Rain by Complainin'

Now that August is nearly over it's time to celebrate what an awesomely hot, sunny and bright month it was.


That's what I'd like to be writing, but unfortunately, the opposite is true: it's time to document, instead, what a disappointingly wet, cold and thoroughly autumnal August it's been this year.

Now, I know I won't stop the rain by complaining. So why not just be practical about it? Make a record of what it's been like and how I've dealt with it. Turn it into a celebration of sorts. Exercise my creativity and make sure that inner summertime is still there somewhere.

I went with a mini-book, inspired by some paper I picked up recently (MME Quite Contrary Jack & Jill: Be Happy 'Gleeful Paper' and My Favourite Thing 'Colourful Umbrellas Paper').

I cut this shape from the two MME papers and also some white and brown cardstock, and some acetate. I used Sassafras Lass cloud stamps and Toga chipboard letters on the front page:

I printed a photo we took at the Belgian Day of Independence in July and inserted it at the beginning. It's the only photo I used - I think it did all the work required from photos, speaking volumes about the weather, about Brussels, about how to deal with the rain. It features a group of drama students arranging themselves into a representation of a thought that was once in Belgian painter René Magritte's head.

I wanted lots of layers, and lots of variety with as few different papers as possible. The MME papers are double-sided, so that meant I had four patterns and two base colours to play with.
Thickers helped raise the relief of the pages:

I incorporated lots of clouds (obviously!) and raindrops (I'm so glad I saved these teardrop gems!). The wellies I cut from foam and drew onto with a thick black pen:

For the acetate page I traced over the umbrellas and coloured them in, using a CD pen (it doesn't come off the acetate):

For one page I stamped around the edges and then painted over most of the page with a layer of acrylic paint (I've seen it around a few times so I wanted to try it myself):

On some leftover acetate I freehanded some swirls and dots with the CD pen, and added a little bit of accent white acrylic paint here and there before cutting around it and sticking it over a page of stamped clouds:
Finally, I couldn't resist including the words of one of my favourite poems, Thomas Hardy's 'A Thunderstorm in Town':
I am proud to say that I have achieved exactly what I wanted from this mini - catharsis, for sure, but it also really makes me smile now when I look at it. A few things I'm really happy with are the layering of the lettering:

Using Glossy Accents over a cut-out umbrella to make a strong, shiny coordinating embie:

And the free-hand acetate swirl:

I hope looking at these bright pictures can put a smile on your face too, even if it's bright and sunny where you are. Thanks for looking, and I'll be back on Tuesday with a little tip I recently came across, and the results of my giveaway.


  1. Oh what a fabulous idea!! You are too creative!!

  2. That's an absolutely perfect mini album - I love everything about it, the papers, the glossy accents, the Hardy poem.

  3. the freehand acetate swirl makes such a nice accent... this is a unique album... I like the crystal raindrops!!! how lovely...and how you slanted the letters in Summer Rain... well... ok so you cant really bask in the sun... BUt why not just dance in the rain... its all good... better days will be here! :)

  4. I love the colours and shapes you have used. The interesting photo is great. Hope you have a nicer September.

  5. I adore this and it's sooooo appropriate for us in Brussels ;-)

  6. This is brilliant! I'm sure it will keep bringing a smile to your face on rainy days far in the future =)