Have you seen the new Smash Book product? People have been talking about it, and it sold out with lightening speed when it first came out. If you are like me, though, you looked at it and thought - "cute, cool, but what would I really DO with it?"
The video was cool - showing how you could use it for an idea book - tearing things from magazines and glueing them in on the fly. That's pretty cool, and I LOVE the idea, but I know myself. That's not something I would do. Sure, I run into neat ideas, but I wouldn't carry a big book like that around with me just to collect ideas. I have a busy life, and I have enough stuff to carry already. If I am going to tote something around with me all the time, it needs to either be REALLY small, or have a major purpose in my life. Plus, I don't tend to be the messy artsy type of person. I like lists and grids and orderly things. When I look at a blank page where I am supposed to put my ideas, I get intimidated.
I heard about some people using these books as mini scrapbooks - taking them on vacation. That's an awesome idea and that's one that I would use, but I didn't have any vacations planned where I would want something like that.
I do however have this almost obsession with all types of journaling books. I make lists ON PAPER. I keep buying books to keep my lists in, but they never seem to work out. Most recently, I bought the tiniest notebook I could find, so I could carry it around and write down my scrapbook ideas. But I lost it because it was so tiny - lol! AND it was hard to write in.
So, I kept looking at and coveting the Smash books stuff - not only for the book, but for the awesome adorable extras. Finally I noticed the calendar inserts. Now THAT is something I could use! I keep a calendar online but, call me old school, I still like to have a visual in front of me, with the basics on it.
I also keep making lists, and I love crossing stuff off, but I kept having to re-write most of it from day to day, week to week, because I was using post-it notes. Soooooo, I came up with the idea to use a smash book as a planner/list keeper/idea book. ONE thing that I can keep all my stuff in!
I used the fabulous Fabric Smash tabs, to separate sections of my book. When I saw these, I just knew they were perfect for me. Fabric is so much more durable than paper. And tabs stick out! I knew this book was going to go through a LOT with me.
Here are the tabs that I created. Calendars: I left 2 facing pages per month. You only get 4 calendar pockets in the pack, but I expect this book to last me at least longer than that. So I left enough pages for 12 months. Then put the next tab on - the 'Scrap lists' tab. I keep lists of ideas for tutorials, challenges, altered items, things I want, things I need - etc. But those lists don't change a whole lot, so I only left about 4 pages for that. Next is non-scrap lists - i.e. projects around the house that I want to do. These are not to-do lists! That will go with the calendar pages. So I only left a couple of pages for that too. My next tab is blog and recipe ideas. Kind of a weird combo, but I don't do a lot of cooking even though sometimes I collect recipe ideas. So I combined those things and only left a few pages. The final tab - inspiration/quotes - is the biggest section. This is where I will do things like the smash book video showed - pasting ideas, drawing things, etc. There is plenty of room there for another tab or two also. I just didn't know what else I would need yet. Always time to evolve!
One thing I thought of that I might add is a workout/diet tracking section. It IS new years - with resolutions and all ;)
This is what my calendar section looked like when I first created it. I had these lists on a piece of paper, so I just copied them over. I was worried that there might not be enough room on these two pages for all my to-do lists for a whole month, so I planned to use papers tucked into the calendar pocket, and postit notes to expand the space. FYI- I found that the glue in the pen wasn't as strong as I wanted for my calendars, so I added some of my ATG glue, and some of the blue tape on the corners. I don't know if that was necessary, but I didn't want to take any chances.
This is what my calendar page looks like now at the end of the month:
You see that I didn't quite run out of space! I have some papers in the pocket with 'daily' to-dos. (Sometimes while Im at work I make lists of little chores that I want to get done that day - 'laundry' didn't make it to the more permanent smash book page because COME ON - there is ALWAYS laundry to do! right?! I could take up a whole page with just writing laundry and crossing it off!
FYI - that pen is FABULOUS! it is just thick enough - love it! and I .... lost it! The next time I place an order I am totally ordering a new one. I was so bummed when I lost that pen!
Here is the start of the scrap lists page.
and here's what it looks like now
Here is the non-scrap lists page. This one didn't change much this month because it was the holidays and I didn't have much time to think about stuff around the house. Also, I think I need to do something about this page, it's kinda hard to read the writing. I might put a layer of gesso or something on it. I don't know yet.
Here is the start of the blog and recipe ideas page. Pretty lame huh?
It got a little more interesting though. One of the things I wanted to do on vacation was revamp my blog. I didn't get around to that because I didn't feel like sitting on the computer, but I DID make some plans for blog features that I can post each month.
Here is the 'after' inspiration and quotes page. I guess I didn't take a 'before' picture because there wasnt really anything to see. But now there is! One day at work I did a little drawing. I also wrote down a couple of card sentiment ideas. Then made a list of ideas for the new Paper Crafts card call for summer themed shaped cards. and there's a little magazine clipping too!
and finally, here is the back pocket where I stuck all the little extras so that I would have them when I need them. (the only thing that didn't fit in there was the roll of tape.)
and here is my 'after' picture of the front of the book. not much interesting there. but it is darn cute right? I keep looking at the flower embossed design and thinking about coloring it in and glittering it up or something, but I can't bring myself to mar all that gorgeous kraft - ness.
So, I guess this reveal/tutorial is sort of a review and a pep talk. This book is great quality and oh so cute! The 'extras' are amazing and there is just so much that you can do with it! You probably aren't going to use it the same way I did, and if you do make a planner - you might have different sections or more pages in the recipe section. But the point is that you can really make it into anything you want, and you don't have to be all 'artsy' and just paste magazine photos of inspirations in it. (not that that isn't a great idea!)
The designs on the pages make it less intimidating to doodle. After all, there are already some designs on there, it isn't just a blank page looking you in the face. All the pocket and paper slip add-ons are perfect for adding stuff in after the fact, in case you don't leave enough pages for one section. I have totally done that before with similar projects. With this one I planned ahead to stick in papers and post-it notes, so it wasnt really any pressure deciding how many pages to use for stuff.
I didn't even use the plain pocket add-ons yet. I figure that they will definitely find a home in my inspiration section, and maybe in the list areas if I need expansion, but right now, I didn't really need them - I have the calendar pockets and so much space!
I used a couple of the stickers for a similar purpose - to draw attention to something and to add space. I used one of them to cover up something that I didn't need anymore with a comment that I wanted to draw attention to.
This is a great planner !
Meg this is so timely and perfect! I got a Smsh Book for Christmas and just keep looking at it and thinking "What am I going to do with this?" thanks for your fun ideas and you mad me LOL!
awesome meg. makes me want to do one.