Monday, March 10, 2014

Scrapper In The City - Meet Melissa Smith

I'm back today with the second installment of Scrapper In The City - a monthly series here on my blog where I have an informal Q&A session with a scrapbooker whose work I admire. If you missed the series debut, where I featured Lisa Hiddy, you can check it out here.

Today I want you to meet Melissa Smith ...


I "met" Melissa on a scrapbooking message board a few months ago and her blog immediately made its way onto my weekly reading list. Not only is she incredibly friendly and down-to-earth, but she's got a real knack for creating whimsical, contemporary projects using the latest and greatest products on the market. I was thrilled when Melissa agreed to sit down with me (via the wonderful world of gmail) to chat about mini albums, getting candid shots of teenagers and scrapbooking on the kitchen counter.

Welcome Melissa! To start things off, can you tell us a little about yourself? 
Hello! I live with my husband and two daughters in Texas, in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, where we are very icy right now! Also included in our family are two guinea pigs, Mable and Tyrone; a dwarf hamster named Carlos; along with Phoebe Pearl and Sadie, our two dogs. I make lots of runs to PetSmart! :)

How and when did you get into scrapbooking?
I got into scrapbooking when I realized years ago I was a workaholic and had no hobbies. I tried my hand at cake decorating first and that was fun. Walking down the aisle of the craft store to buy a new cake pan, I came across scrapping supplies. My eyes popped out of my head and my heart started beating faster and I stood on that aisle mesmerized. :) I do enjoy reading as well, but if given a choice will usually pull out the scrapping supplies.


How would you describe your scrapbooking style? 
I have no idea if I have a style or what it would be called. Someone let me know! Right now, my favorite manufacturers are Crate Paper, Basic Grey's new releases and October Afternoon. I usually start with whatever products are inspiring me at the moment and choose photos that are waiting to be scrapped. Sometimes it's the story or something I want to say to the girls that feels like it needs to come out.

Your daughters are so photogenic - it must be fun to snap photos of them! Any advice for moms out there with teens who aren't so fond of the camera?
Yes! My daughters download the selfies they take with their phone onto our computer. I love finding them and that is where I get a lot of scrap material these days! One of my daughters has become camera shy with me this year, so getting her selfies is great. I also take candid shots when she's interacting with her dad or pets and that makes it easier than putting her on the spot for photos by herself. You could also get htem off their Instagram or Facebook posts to get shots of their real life as they see it.


I noticed on your blog that in addition to traditional scrapbook layouts you've also made quite a few mini albums and altered projects. How did you venture beyond 12x12 layouts?
I used to hold off making a mini book unless I had a lot of pictures from an event or theme. Now that my girls are about to graduate from high school, I've been making a few minis that use current pictures as well as mixing in photos from when they were younger. I have a big box of pictures from before I began scrapping and have found that's a fun way to use them - mixing old and new photos together in minis while I'm going down memory lane!

What's your weakness when shopping for scrappy supplies?
Diecut embellishments, hands down. Especially when I see them used really well on a layout, I will go hunt them down and order them :) Or seeing sneak previews around CHA time. I love seeing rich, bright paper and wonderful diecut embellishment packs!

How about in the Skyline Paperie shop? What tops your wish list right now?
The kraft and white flair made me swoon, as did the neon sequins pack - wow! But I think all the cabochons, resin bows and blue polka dot hearts are the cutest thing!! So adorable.


Do you have your own scrapbook room or space? 
Oh, how I wish! When we moved into our latest house (DH was a Marine for 23 years, so we've moved a good bit), the house is very open floor plan and there's not really a scrapbook room. So now I have stuff stashed away here and there and have to drag it all out. It's changed up how I do things, though, now that I don't have my own craft room. I'll usually have a layout going on one of the kitchen counters with just a few items of embellishments to choose from and work on it as I'm making dinner. I do like leaving the layout out and working on it in bits and pieces, so that's all good.

You must be a super organized scrapbooker to be able to pull that off! I make such a mess, my husband would never let me take over the kitchen counter.
I was a big messy scrapper when I had my craft room, so being able to just pull out a bit of stuff here and there has helped me keep the messiness under control. It's easier to just use a bit of this and put it back, then pull out a bit of that and put it back versus how I used to have everything out when I had my own room and made a mess!

Okay, I had so much fun playing "Finish The Sentence" with Lisa, I have to play it again with you! Complete these sentences for us ...

  • If I couldn't blog about scrapbooking/crafts, I'd blog about .... my daughters and pets!
  • If I could only use 3 supplies (plus adhesive) on all my future layouts I would choose to work with ... embellishment packs, sequins and sewing machine.
  • If I could meet any "famous" scrapbooker/designer for lunch, I'd want to hang out with ... Teresa Collins! I did have dinner with her one night and went shopping with her at a big button/trim store and had the best time. She's truly a sweetheart, very down-to-earth and so easy to talk to. What a doll she was. 
Photo Credit: Zurich.com
Time for a non-scrapbooking question now ... Not including your own city, which city/cities do you love to visit or dream of someday visiting?
Dream city would be Zurich, Switzerland, for sure!! I've always loved the idea of spending time in Switzerland - what a dream! I do love visiting Austin. I lived there for five years and had so much fun - a very unique place.

Where can people find you online?
I don't get to scrap as often as I would like because I work and the girls and pets keep me busy, but I do have a blog that I post my work to. It's www.thesmithgirlsspot.blogspot.com 

A great big thank you to Melissa for sharing her work with us and taking the time to answer all my questions. Make sure you head on over to her blog for more of her amazing projects! 

If YOU are interested in being featured as a "Scrapper In The City" leave a comment below or shoot me an email at stephanie (at) skylinepaperie.com and we'll chat! Also, if there is a specific question you would like to ask Melissa (or scrapbookers in general) please ask it in the comments below! I'd love to get a great conversation going on here. 

5 comments :

  1. lovely work by Melissa! I especially love that 2nd layout, "full of gobbles." it's such a neat design!

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  2. What a great series! I'll lie to chat sometime.

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  3. Thank you for having me, Stephanie! Love your shop and I think you're a doll!

    xoxo

    Melissa

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  4. Nice to meet you Melissa! Your work is just lovely and I am so glad to have discovered your blog!

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  5. What a fun series you've started Stephanie! Love you and your shop!! Wow,Melissa's work is stunning! You know where to find me if you ever want to chat :)

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Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! xo