SYW220 – Secrets of a Prolific Scrapbooker

by | May 19, 2023 | Podcast | 0 comments

Some scrapbookers seem to being creating constantly! How do they find the time? In this episode I’m chatting with Erica Thompson, aka Erica Rose, about how she stays motivated and productive as a mom to six kids. Our conversation includes tips for juggling multiple projects, creating when you don’t feel like it, and staying organized when you have a lot of product.

Links Mentioned

[00:01:13] Jennifer Wilson: Welcome to Scrapbook Your Way, the show that explores the breadth of ways to be a memory keeper today. I’m your host, Jennifer Wilson, owner of Simple Scrapper and author of The New Rules of Scrapbooking. This is episode 220. In this episode I'm joined by Erica Thompson, a memory keeper who is always creating and sharing something new. Our conversation will reveal her secrets of scrapbooking almost every day while balancing real life.

[00:01:44] Jennifer Wilson: Hey Erica. Welcome to Scrapbook Your Way.

[00:01:45] Erica Thompson: Thank you I'm very happy to be here I'm excited.

[00:01:50] Jennifer Wilson: Yes. Me too I'm looking forward to our conversation. Can you share a little bit about yourself to kick things off?

[00:01:56] Erica Thompson: Um so my name's Erica Thompson on uh social medias I go by Erica Rose or Erica Rose Creates. Um I am from Illinois I live in a small town here in Illinois uh with my husband Mike and um our kids and two dogs Uh we have six kids um Drake, Grant, Alyssa, Gavin, Eli, and Liam. Then our two dogs Lola and our brand new puppy Apollo. So I've been a stay-at-home mom ever since I was pregnant with my daughter and um I also a small photography business that I do as well.

[00:02:36] Jennifer Wilson: Oh super fun. So you need to tell me where you live because I live in the Champaign Urbana area area so I am also in small town illinois.

[00:02:44] Erica Thompson: I live in uh Rochelle Illinois. Champaign I believe is an hour.

[00:02:51] Jennifer Wilson: We're in like East Central.

[00:02:53] Erica Thompson: Maybe two hours. I'll Have to look it up. But you're you're not too far.

[00:02:57] Jennifer Wilson: Yeah. Very cool. That is always fun I love to meet others here in the Midwest. So Erica what is exciting you right now? We're asking our guests this year to share both a scrappy related thing as well as a non scrappy thing.

[00:03:10] Erica Thompson: So a non scrappy thing, we just got a new puppy. I surprised everyone um and brought home a puppy that our local vet had posted. Uh he came in as a stray and he was so so cute. Um I went and met him and then I brought him home the next day. Oh my gosh he is so cute. Uh my husband actually showed him to me and um he's just the cutest thing. And then when I did bring him home, cause I didn't tell my husband that I was gonna get him. He was like, um what did you do? And I'm like well you showed him to me I just had to go save him. So um we are having fun with him. He is just the the sweetest little thing and um training all all the puppy things we are doing right now. So it's been a lot of fun.

[00:03:58] Jennifer Wilson: I imagine there's lots of uh photo taking.

[00:04:01] Erica Thompson: Oh, my gosh, every day. Yes Yes. And we have Lola who is six. She's a uh red nose pit bull. And um she's very mellow and just likes to sleep and you know eat and sleep. So this puppy is super hyper and like wants to play all the time. And she's just like I am not in the mood for you right now. And she's starting to warm up to him and she's very very gentle with him. But she is starting to play which is nice to see because she hasn't done that in so long. Cuz we had we had a boxer um that passed away a couple years ago and they used to play all the time. So I know she's she was missing that interaction with another dog. So it's it's nice to have the puppy here.

[00:04:44] Jennifer Wilson: Oh awesome. I love it. And what about inside your hobby, what's Fun right now?

[00:04:48] Erica Thompson: Um I have it an event that I'm excited to um teach at this year. I haven't we haven't announced it yet. Um but that is coming this month, the announcement. So I'm really excited about that. And I'm getting prepared for that. And then um I do have my own event that I'm hosting um at the last weekend of this month. So I'm I'm really excited about that.

[00:05:11] Erica Thompson: I I just love to teach and I'm excited because I have my own event that I'm putting on It's a small event in uh Beloit Wisconsin. Um but it will be where I am the main teacher and I'm teaching the classes. And then after the classes are done for the evening it'll be like a small crop. And um so I'm really excited for that.

[00:05:28] Jennifer Wilson: Yes. That sounds so fun. Now for the event that you can't talk about yet can you give us a hint on what month it's going to take place?

[00:05:36] Erica Thompson: Oh my gosh.

[00:05:36] Jennifer Wilson: Like our listeners can kind of plan, or No, you can't say.

[00:05:40] Erica Thompson: I don't I I think if I gave the month away it might give it away.

[00:05:44] Jennifer Wilson: I see. Okay.

[00:05:46] Jennifer Wilson: We shall continue on and look forward to the news.

[00:05:49] Erica Thompson: Um I'm pretty sure that it will be announced this month so it's it'll be soon, the announcement.

[00:05:55] Jennifer Wilson: Okay. Sounds good. So Erica what is on your bucket list? So this is a story that you really want to tell. Uh it feels significant and important in some way but for some reason you haven't told it yet.

[00:06:09] Erica Thompson: Okay. So one story that I know that I haven't told um or I haven't documented is the way that my husband and I met. Um and like how quickly everything kind of I got started and all that stuff. And it's funny cuz my daughter had just recently asked it's probably like two weeks ago, she had asked like how long we dated and all that. And so I kind of went through the story with her and she was like shocked that we had only known each other for a very short time before we actually got married.

[00:06:44] Jennifer Wilson: Yeah.

[00:06:45] Erica Thompson: So that is one story that I I still need to to document and and leave. Cuz I don't I'm not even sure if my older boys even know story of like how we met and how things you know how we started, I guess. So, yeah.

[00:07:04] Jennifer Wilson: Well it's it's sometimes those things it's hard to like what is the appropriate amount of of detail here when it's something that's so you know personal.

[00:07:14] Erica Thompson: Yeah. So I I should should that's one that I really really need to, to document and get on because it was it was kind of crazy. It's a crazy story.

[00:07:27] Jennifer Wilson: Well I look forward to seeing what you do.

[00:07:28] Erica Thompson: Thank you.

[00:07:31] Jennifer Wilson: So I wanted to have you on the show because I've observed that you are an incredibly prolific scrapbooker who primarily creates in the traditional 12 by 12 format. So maybe we can just dive right in and can you share why you love that particular size?

[00:07:47] Erica Thompson: Um I just love the space. Um and I'm one that likes to use cut files a lot. Um probably like 95% of my layouts are cut files. I love being able to use like a large title, um or like large wreaths. And you get a lot of space so you you want to create layouts with multi photos. You can have that on that 12 by 12 space.

[00:08:14] Jennifer Wilson: That's super cool. Now did you always create in that size? Is that kind of where you started and where you've continued.

[00:08:20] Erica Thompson: When I was younger, I started with just like, I don't know if you remember those books that are called the Smash, like Smash Books. Um they used to sell 'em I think at Michael's. Um so I would just create the Smash Books um myself just with like regular like notebook paper from the store and pull out a lot of the pages. And then I that way I could chunk it up um and and add photos. And I would use magazine clippings. And that's kind of how I started to document at a young age. Um middle school I would use those photo albums that you would peel the plastic back and put your photos on yeah

[00:09:01] Jennifer Wilson: Yes.

[00:09:01] Erica Thompson: And I would just stick my photos in there. And again it used magazines and cut out my own titles. Um and used like different fonts and colors for the titles and things like that. Um a lot of things I would cut out of magazines or cut out of uh brochures and stuff like that to use as ephemera or to decorate. Or stickers like Lisa Frank and um just different stickers and sticker books and sticker packs. So that's kind of how that started. Um and then as I got older um my mom bought me my very first real scrapbook. Um which was a huge scrapbook with a cat on it. I think she got it for me for Valentine's Day and it just had like Manila pages in it. So I would just kind of stick things in there with tape. And then um once I had my kids, I bought 12 by 12 pre-made scrapbook pages or books. And then that's everything was already done for you and you would just slap the label the photos in there and then add your journaling. So over the years, obviously everything has changed but yeah.

[00:10:06] Jennifer Wilson: You just kind of dove in further uh explored all there is to offer.

[00:10:11] Erica Thompson: Yeah. And I remember I didn't even know that there was like this community out there like I think it was uh I don't know like a YouTube video of um gosh I can't think of her name right now, um but she was very vintage. And I can't even think of her name and I can't believe I can't think of her name right now. But she had her own collection and I remember seeing like her video and her making a mini album and I was just like oh my gosh I wanna do that. Like I was so inspired by her. Um oh my gosh And I can't even think of her name

[00:10:47] Jennifer Wilson: Are you thinking of Teresa Collins?

[00:10:48] Erica Thompson: No not Theresa Collins. Um oh my gosh.

[00:10:54] Jennifer Wilson: Uh.

[00:10:54] Jennifer Wilson: Is this is the guy who liked buttons? Sorry that's very specific. I, I thi I have an idea. Um.

[00:11:03] Erica Thompson: Oh my gosh I I don't know why I can't think of her name, but she she just made these amazing mini albums. And I would follow her. And then she ended up coming out with her own collections and um planners and all this stuff. And I can't even think of her name right now. But once I like clicked on her and then seeing the products that she was using and then I I found Tim Holtz and it just it just didn't stop from there.

[00:11:29] Jennifer Wilson: Gosh, now I wanna figure out who this is.

[00:11:31] Erica Thompson: I know and I can't.

[00:11:32] Jennifer Wilson: Is she still around today?

[00:11:34] Erica Thompson: She doesn't do products anymore. Um I do still follow her like her personal page but I can't I don't know why my.

[00:11:42] Jennifer Wilson: Does she like sell like vintage stuff?

[00:11:45] Erica Thompson: She sold vintage collections, like I remember she had like a Alice in Wonderland collection that was super cute. And she would at first it was like digital product and then it was real product. And I met her, I remember one year at CHA I was just like in awe that she was there. Um, I can't, oh my gosh it's gonna kill me that I cannot even remember her name. Oh my gosh.

[00:12:11] Erica Thompson: I'll think of it after the show I know I will It'll come to me and I'll be like oh my gosh I can't believe I forgot that.

[00:12:18] Jennifer Wilson: The name is on the tip of my tongue of who I'm thinking about but I think it's someone different. She always the person I'm thinking of always did like um, she had like playing cards and sewing thing like lots of like home based ephemera. And then she also sold like some vintage goods and I think she still does.

[00:12:36] Erica Thompson: Is that, Jen, are you thinking of Jenni Bowlin?

[00:12:39] Jennifer Wilson: Yes.

[00:12:39] Erica Thompson: Okay. I love Jenni, I love Jenni Bowlin too. Like I I think I found her shortly after this other one or I don't know. But I remember I had all of Jenni Bowlin's inks and I purchased so much Jenny Bowlin stuff. Um but she was another one of my favorites. I can't oh my gosh I can't think of her name It'll come to me.

[00:13:02] Jennifer Wilson: Well how about we're gonna promise to our listeners that we'll include a link in the show notes of whoever it is.

[00:13:07] Erica Thompson: Yeah.

[00:13:07] Jennifer Wilson: Just for reference. And that's gonna you know convince them to go visit the show notes for this episode and see all the other links that we're gonna share today. So.

[00:13:16] Erica Thompson: Okay.

[00:13:19] Jennifer Wilson: So as I was browsing your Instagram and looking at your work I noticed that you do sometimes make mini books. And you know obviously you've had a a connection to that style over time. So what type of products or stories or kind of intentions for your scrapbooking will get you to make a mini book versus a 12 by 12 page?

[00:13:38] Erica Thompson: Okay. So I I love mini books. Like like I said from when I saw that lady make the mini book. I used to make them a lot more. Um used to make them more than I did my scrapbook layouts. Um but any really anything I will create a mini album for. Uh Halloween for sure Um holidays Christmas usually goes in a mini album. Just because I take so many photos.

[00:14:02] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm

[00:14:03] Erica Thompson: Birthdays. Um I do like to do like a mini album of myself year. Just what's going on things like that. My favorites. Um so really anything I can make a mini album out of anything. I love mini albums. So um the kids like to have their own little mini albums or a special event, graduation, um a dance. Really anything. I just love them. Halloween is probably my favorite to do. Uh yeah Halloween and and Christmas.

[00:14:37] Jennifer Wilson: And then if you had to kind of contrast that with the things that you choose for your scrapbook pages is it similar topics or different topics? Like how like are there are there ways to to group or categorize these or is it just based on your inspiration?

[00:14:51] Erica Thompson: Just based on my inspiration. Um I just whatever I'm feeling. Sometimes a collection, I'll I'll use it to to document you know, like let's say I have a summer collection. And I'll create layouts with it and there's always a leftover product that I don't wanna get rid of. So it's will inspire me to create a mini album, cuz they're so easy to make. So.

[00:15:16] Jennifer Wilson: Yes, yes. It's always I love I always get so inspired by pattern paper and it's like oh I just wanna do something with all of this. And you know oftentimes it ends up as some sort of mini album.

[00:15:25] Erica Thompson: They're so easy to make and there's so many different ways to make them in different sizes and um or just creating like little notebooks or something with like the Cinch.

[00:15:37] Jennifer Wilson: Yes, yes, yes. I actually took you know I don't know if you do um Cocoa Daisy products at all. But they some of their papers come they're really thick kind of card stock pattern papers and they're pre folded. And I realize I could take my Cinch and gather all of these up and make, you know, basically a decorative notebook.

[00:15:56] Erica Thompson: Yes.

[00:15:57] Jennifer Wilson: That I can then maybe do like mixed media stuff in I don't actually have a purpose for it yet. But I did use my Cinch and bind it all together and I'm excited about the possibilities.

[00:16:05] Erica Thompson: Oh yeah yeah.

[00:16:09] Jennifer Wilson: So going back to the 12 by 12. How many pages do you think you make in a year?

[00:16:14] Erica Thompson: Gosh I was trying to figure this out and I have no idea because I make so many layouts every month for my design teams and the just for for myself. And then um.

[00:16:27] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm

[00:16:28] Erica Thompson: For my Patreon. So I have so many layouts every month. Like I posted a stack on my Instagram I don't know if you saw the photo?

[00:16:38] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm

[00:16:40] Erica Thompson: And that was probably like a stack for like a month, maybe less than a month. So quite a few. I need to keep track.

[00:16:52] Jennifer Wilson: And and how do you store them? Like do they all do you end up with piles everywhere?

[00:16:59] Erica Thompson: Oh I do end up with.

[00:17:00] Jennifer Wilson: Do you quickly get them into albums?

[00:17:02] Erica Thompson: No, I not get them into albums right away. Um I have them stacked for quite a while until they can't stack anymore and then I'll put them in a large clear case.

[00:17:16] Jennifer Wilson: Okay. Like one of the the Iris bins?

[00:17:19] Erica Thompson: But like the the the deep ones the deeper ones so I can get a lot in there. Um and some of them are in boxes, my gosh. Um so like when I get products like from Doodlebug they send like the nice little boxes. So some of them will go in there um until I can get them into albums. That's horrible.

[00:17:39] Jennifer Wilson: Now, I mean okay. So no like let's like step back. Um when you create for design teams like sometimes you have specific assignments and you know even as a as just an everyday scrapbooker sometimes we make pages that we love and sometimes we make pages or are like eh it was okay. Um you know kind of what's your, when you look at the boxes and the stacks, what's your kind of uh final destination. Like where do you think you're going? Would you think you'll discard any of them? Are you planning to save every single last one?

[00:18:16] Erica Thompson: No, I I ha, I will, I just threw one away the other day. Um I will discard some of them. That's horrible. Um especially if I know that I've already documented that photo. I If it's for like a team or like a a special assignment or something. Um. because I know I already have the photo of that layout in my computer, like it's saved. I can always print print that out if if I need to or if I wanted to I could always just print out a 12 by 12 digital of that. Um but most of them I do save. There's hardly I hardly ever get rid of the layouts. Um so they will eventually end up a 12 by 12. Like every kid, for every one of the kids they'll have like a million books. Um but yeah. Yeah, they'll eventually end up in a 12 by 12. Um but most of them are sitting in boxes. They just I just create so many, like throughout the month. I mean I probably make a layout day.

[00:19:23] Jennifer Wilson: So we're talking, you know, 300 plus a year probably.

[00:19:27] Erica Thompson: Yes.

[00:19:27] Jennifer Wilson: I'm No it you're you're giggling and I really want to like be a like psychoanalyst here and try to understand like um what's going on in your head. So I mean there's a there's a balance here between like you, it's my impression that you love to create.

[00:19:43] Erica Thompson: I do, I do love to.

[00:19:46] Jennifer Wilson: And, yeah. Um and I think sometimes we talk so much about like the legacy and the stories and you know making sure that you know our best photos are being saved. But there is like the joy in the present moment.

[00:20:01] Erica Thompson: Yes.

[00:20:02] Jennifer Wilson: And so I'm curious, like what's your like blend of all those things?

[00:20:05] Erica Thompson: So a lot of my my layouts and my photos are are little moments. Those are my favorite. The little the smaller moments and the little moments because those are the ones that we tend to forget. We don't document as much. You know we're always documenting the weddings and the graduations and the birthday, and the. But what about when like my little one would stand up on the bench win his tippy toes. And like I used to love him up on his toes. So I remember getting down on the ground with my camera and photographing just him being up on his tippy toes trying his hardest to like get up and grab something off of the table. Those little moments, those little feet, his little toes, those things. Um the toys at the bottom of the tub that we might get like frustrated with always be like oh I gotta get all these out of the way. Cause you know someone's gotta take a shower or whatever. But those toys are not always gonna be there at the bottom of the tub. Because one day they're not gonna they're not gonna play with the toys anymore. Um so I wanna document that or the big bubble baths and the things like that. Um you these little little little things. And I remember um one of the boys had these these bubble baths they were like Ninja Turtles. They were like his favorite things. And like if I wouldn't have documented that and like talked about it and and and had that story. In 20 years I there was no way I was gonna remember that. Know it's gonna fade away because there's like for we have six kids so there's so many little stories and little moments. Um so I try to document everything. And my kids are always like oh my gosh here she is with the phone again, with the camera again. Mom put your camera away. But I know that they're gonna appreciate that down the road because they're gonna have all these photos and all of these stories.

[00:21:59] Jennifer Wilson: Yes yes yes a hundred percent.

[00:22:00] Erica Thompson: So yeah I I do love I love I just love to doc to to to create and to document. Um I do get joy out of creating. And I do create a lot of layouts.

[00:22:13] Jennifer Wilson: So can you tell us a bit more about your style? So if there's someone who hasn't seen any of your work and you know can't hop on Instagram while they're listening here. So can you let us know kind of what what your pages look like?

[00:22:26] Erica Thompson: Um, I I don't I would like to say that it's clean. Because I I usually use a white background and if you look at my feed most of, I have a, I struggle with pattern paper backgrounds. So I would say clean and colorful. I have a hard time like telling people what my style is. Um So I usually just say it's clean but it's colorful. Um and I I use cut files like all the time. They're like my favorite thing. And before I did cut files it was layers. Like if you go like way back on my Instagram, it was like layers like tons of paper layers like.

[00:23:08] Jennifer Wilson: Okay.

[00:23:08] Erica Thompson: Just strip, I would just cut strips, I would just cut into the paper and just cut different size strips and then put them in a bundle on the layout and add some embellishments and then that was it.

[00:23:22] Jennifer Wilson: That sounds like a lot, I mean probably similar timeframe, I was doing a lot of that as well. It sounds very familiar for sure.

[00:23:31] Erica Thompson: And I remember.

[00:23:33] Jennifer Wilson: I think there's some like high contrast in here too because you do use like black.

[00:23:37] Erica Thompson: I love.

[00:23:38] Jennifer Wilson: And black and white photos.

[00:23:40] Erica Thompson: Yes.

[00:23:41] Jennifer Wilson: Yeah even black cut files.

[00:23:43] Erica Thompson: Yes. Lots of black. Black is like my favorite thing. Um and anytime there's a collection that comes with touches of black in it, I I love that. So I'm on the Doodlebug design team and Cynthia knows this, so anytime they have a collection that has black in it and like before they release it, she's like you're gonna be so excited It's got black in it. I just, I just love that look. Um like the bright colors with black. They did a fall collection that they included some black in It's just so it's just so pretty to me.

[00:24:14] Jennifer Wilson: Yeah It just it really pops off the page.

[00:24:16] Erica Thompson: Yes it does.

[00:24:19] Jennifer Wilson: So you mentioned that you love cut files, so what are your favorite techniques within that realm or also outside of that realm?

[00:24:27] Erica Thompson: Um for my cut files I usually just a basic, back it with pattern paper. But it is fun to switch it up and maybe back it with uh it's like some border str, like cutting border strips and backing it that way. Or uh creating shakers with the with the cut files. That's a lot of fun as well. Um but mainly I just like to use pattern papers and mix up just a whole bunch of different pattern papers and color for that, for my cut files. if I'm not doing a cut file then I'm pulling out my, my border punches or my dies. And using them on my layout. Those are my favorite. If I'm not doing a cut file then it's usually punches and and dies.

[00:25:11] Jennifer Wilson: So you're definitely all about shapes.

[00:25:13] Erica Thompson: Yes. Yep. Hearts, squares.

[00:25:17] Jennifer Wilson: Interesting. So when you sit down to kind of compose how the page is gonna look, what are some of the first things you're thinking about? Because it seems like you're kind of playing with like space and shapes and figuring out how this is gonna fit together with photos that are in many cases going to be either within the shape or squares or rectangles.

[00:25:37] Erica Thompson: Right So

[00:25:38] Jennifer Wilson: You know sometimes are difficult.

[00:25:39] Erica Thompson: Yeah. I I I don't even know. I just out my product, I got my photos. I I just I don't even know how I I start to do it or what design I'm gonna do. But um I just create. So I remember I did a a heart layout and it's like one of my fav, I have it pinned to the top of my Instagram. And it's using a Vicki Boutin collection. And I did it for a heart class that I did. And it's like one of my favorite layouts. It's got no cut files It's just all pattern paper a ton of die cut hearts that have stitching on them and a round photo in the center. And I wanted to create I love to create things if I'm not doing a cut file um things that are right in the center. So either like a large circle, a large heart. Um something that the focus is in the center. So I just took all these hearts, set my photo in the center and then just started to layer them all around that circle. It looks like a just a colorful like flower in the center of the layout. And I just, I just love, I love that. Um large elements in the center of a layout. So a lot of times that's what I'll do. There's like four main designs that I do. It's either the center focus like a wreath, a circle, something large in the center. A large cut file.

[00:27:06] Jennifer Wilson: Okay.

[00:27:07] Erica Thompson: Um a grid or a vertical design. Those are like my four go-tos. And I'll take those.

[00:27:13] Jennifer Wilson: Oh, interesting.

[00:27:15] Erica Thompson: Four designs and just you know switch it up by product or or whatever, I'm whatever I'm using.

[00:27:22] Jennifer Wilson: So it sounds like you like a lot of balance across the page, like asymmetric type things maybe not so much.

[00:27:30] Erica Thompson: I I don't even.

[00:27:31] Jennifer Wilson: Is that is that accurate?

[00:27:33] Erica Thompson: I mean, I guess. But I don't really, like I know there's like the like the design, like the rules. Like the rules of thirds and the that. When I'm creating I just create. And I don't really think about, about like oh you know that's gotta have like the rule thirds, you know what I mean. Like I have to have flowers here and flowers. I just create. And if it turns out that way that's great. Sometimes I will look at it and be like, oh I only have an enamel dots on this these two sides so I better add a couple up here. But usually, most of the time, I just create. I don't want any rules. I just wanna have fun and and play and make my layout.

[00:28:11] Jennifer Wilson: Well and I think there's some some scrapbookers are are very comfortable creating kind of from intuition and others will like to follow along with others who can create from intuition. Because maybe they don't have that skill as as naturally.

[00:28:26] Erica Thompson: Yeah. Yeah. I just I'm and when I when I'm teaching a class and if I get questions and um how did you come up with this. Or I try to just tell people just just have fun with your product. This is your your product. This is your your photo. And if it looks good to you, then it looks good. It's a beautiful layout.

[00:28:46] Jennifer Wilson: Yes. Oh I totally agree So besides things that maybe have black in the collection what type of product do you get most excited about receiving in the mail?

[00:28:55] Erica Thompson: Uh dies are, are our favorite. Um anything that's paper. Pattern paper, I love paper. Um and that probably goes just back to my childhood and and being in love with like stationary product. I loved stationary in the pretty papers. Um so pa pattern papers, pretty pattern papers. Um dies. And then um any type of a a pattern stamp is is.

[00:29:23] Jennifer Wilson: Oh.

[00:29:23] Erica Thompson: Me excited Yeah Mm-hmm.

[00:29:25] Jennifer Wilson: I like how with pattern stamps you don't have to be as perfect.

[00:29:30] Erica Thompson: Yes.

[00:29:31] Jennifer Wilson: Cause you're not worrying about the word coming out, so you can read all the letters. You can be a little bit grungier with it.

[00:29:37] Erica Thompson: Yes. I I love pattern stamps. They're my favorite. Um there's one that I use from Close To My Heart and I probably need to buy another one cause it's like so got it so wore out. Um but I use it all of the time. It's just a a fun, easy, splatter stamp. And if you're somebody who loves that look of like the splatter but you don't like the mess then using the pattern stamp is is perfect.

[00:30:04] Jennifer Wilson: Oh I love that. That's a great idea I will if that's still available I will link to it.

[00:30:08] Erica Thompson: Yes it is available It's it's my favorite. I love it.

[00:30:11] Jennifer Wilson: So I I'm sure it's safe to assume that a lot of your decisions are driven by the product that arrives in your desk. So how do you manage all the assignments and decisions about what to scrapbook, what photos you're gonna use, um when you're on so many teams?

[00:30:27] Erica Thompson: No idea. Everybody asked me that. I have no idea. Um I it's easy for me to create, so anything that I get I can I can create anything with the products. And with the you know the products that I'm sent on my teams. The teams that I'm on I love. Um that's one thing that I I do when I'm I asked about my design teams and you know how do I get on design teams and what can they do. It's just if you wanna be on a design team be on a design team that you're gonna love. Because then it's gonna be easy for you to create with that product.

[00:31:02] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm.

[00:31:03] Erica Thompson: Um so uh my assignments, I love to have assignments where I'm I I have like free range where I can kind of create what I want. I do struggle with mood boards. When I have an assignment for a mood board, I don't know why, I just always struggled with that. Um but a lot of a lot of the teams that I'm on um we're sent our product and have the flexibility just to create what we want. Just with the collection that we're sent. Um sometimes it's harder to create with product that I don't have like a connection with. Like I I I don't have a need for it. And one example would be the Doodlebug Pretty Kitty collection. I don't have any kitties. I'm very very allergic to cats. So what I did was take that collection and created dog layouts with it. Um.

[00:32:02] Jennifer Wilson: Oh fun.

[00:32:04] Erica Thompson: That's that's a struggle sometimes when I don't have like a a need for it. But I I can usually knock it out. Um as far as keeping my uh design teams in order. That's, I struggle with that. I'm not gonna lie. Um but I do I do get it done.

[00:32:27] Jennifer Wilson: Are there any like calendars or digital tools or anything that comes into play? Or is it sticky notes?

[00:32:32] Erica Thompson: Um sticky notes and a planner. Um and then um alerts on my phone. Is usually the way that I go.

[00:32:38] Jennifer Wilson: There you go.

[00:32:39] Erica Thompson: Um so yeah.

[00:32:41] Jennifer Wilson: I guess along the same like logistical lines, how do you manage like the influx of product and, you know, both the in, you know, stuff coming in and the need to, for stuff to be going out in order to not have your house overflowing?

[00:32:54] Erica Thompson: Yeah that is um, I have a lot of product. But I do like to give product to uh we have a I have a neighbor a little girl and she loves stickers and paper so I'll just whatever I'm done with I'll put it in a box and she can take it. Um when my mom was still a preschool uh working at a daycare, I would give her a product and she could use that in her classroom. Um So sometimes I'll take it like when I have events can take it and give it away like a free giveaway box so people can take stuff. Um and then sometimes I do destash boxes because there is a lot.

[00:33:31] Jennifer Wilson: But But that's obviously something you're very like mindful of. I mean, I'm sure you have to be.

[00:33:35] Erica Thompson: Yeah cuz I do have a lot of of product coming in. Um so I wish I could keep it all but I do not have the space for it.

[00:33:45] Jennifer Wilson: And so, okay. When you are someone who creates daily, if not near daily, how do you find, um, your creativity when maybe you're feeling physically off? I know you've been under the weather recently, or maybe you're just mentally off. You know, how do you keep it going? Is that easy for you or sometimes a challenge?

[00:34:05] Erica Thompson: It can be a challenge. And there was a time uh um probably last year uh or I felt like I I can't do it anymore. And I remember one of my design team leaders reached out, are you okay? Is something wrong? And I just told her like I I can't I'm just I don't feel like creating or I don't I just feel overwhelmed. Like and then it be it becomes it just became not fun for me.

[00:34:37] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm.

[00:34:37] Erica Thompson: Like I totally understand If you need a break, we'll give you a break. It's okay. Um so I did, I took a break and that helped. Um but I I love to create so I I didn't take that long of a break. Um but sometimes you do need a break and it's okay to say Hey I just need to take you know a month off or or um a couple weeks off. Um but a lot of times when I I don't feel like I want to create a layout, or I don't, I just I'll take like a cut file and I'll back it. Or I'll uh clean my shelves like rearrange my paper product or just like go through things and destash. That will kind of bring me back to where I need to be. Especially backing a cut file. Cuz I can sit and back cut files, all day. I love to do it. And not just to make a layout but just to do it. I get like satisfaction from seeing the cut file backed. Especially like a really intricate one.

[00:35:36] Jennifer Wilson: Mm-hmm. For sure. Yeah, I've heard, I've heard that several times. Like also like fussy, cutting. Anything where you can touch your supplies without feeling like you have to get to the end goal of a finished page.

[00:35:48] Erica Thompson: Yes. Yes.

[00:35:49] Jennifer Wilson: Um, helps you stay connected while maybe you're not feeling super inspired.

[00:35:53] Erica Thompson: Cuz you're still you know working with your products and playing with your product. Fussy cutting is another one that I love to do. So I'll take a 12 by 12 and fussy cut that and just save those pieces for another day. But that that will help me as well. And it's um rearranging my stamps or my inks. Something like that will kind of help me get back to it.

[00:36:13] Jennifer Wilson: Now, I'm sure you've been asked this before, but What do you think it takes to be a great design team member?

[00:36:18] Erica Thompson: Uh, I do get asked that a lot. I'll get asked a lot of design team questions. Um, just love the product that you're gonna work with. I remember being on a, like, trying to get on teams just to get on a team, I'm sure I'm not the only one out there. Um, and then just having a hard time with the product that I got because it really wasn't something that I loved, I just really wanted to try to get on a team. So that is like the main thing. If you're gonna be on a team and you wanna be on a team, then do it with a company that you actually love the product, like you love it, you, you're gonna be able to use it. Um, great photos. Of the, of the, of the layouts. I get that a lot. Uh, how to take your photos. What, what do I use? Um, things like that.

[00:37:08] Jennifer Wilson: Do you have any like Instagram posts, videos, blog posts on how you take your photos? Cause that's something we could link in the show notes. I know that's a question that I get asked a lot as well.

[00:37:18] Erica Thompson: Um, I don't have, I don't have like a, a public video, but if somebody asks me, I have a video that I sent to Vicki Boutin one time. Um, and I I, just redid it because the app that I used, like updated. So I, I use a Color Story app to edit all my photos. I take photos with iPhone and it's what, it's everything that I post is from my phone. Um, so that's the app that I use to edit. It's, I use my iPhone to take my photos and it's super easy. I just sent it to another friend too, um, because they like the way that my photos looked. Um, so yeah, I can post. Like share the app and everything, but if anybody wants that video, I'd be happy to send it to 'em.

[00:38:00] Erica Thompson: It's just like a quick screen recording on my phone and me talking you through it. It's like five minutes long and it's super easy. Um, but I mean, I think a good photo, like if you're gonna, uh, you know, submit to a design team, they want the bright photos. Um, so I think it helps.

[00:38:20] Jennifer Wilson: Oh, I totally agree.

[00:38:22] Jennifer Wilson: So you mentioned you, you have your event coming up soon. Can you share a bit about what you're doing with your personal brand and anything else, um, that you might be working on that you're able to share at this time.

[00:38:34] Erica Thompson: Yeah, so I have my event coming up at the end of this month, and then I'm gonna announce the event for next year, which is gonna be on, um, the first weekend of May, which is International Scrapbooking day. Um, so that whole weekend, is going to be my Creative Chaos event. Um, so I'm really, really excited about that.

[00:38:54] Erica Thompson: Um, Andrea Lake is going to be there as well, teaching a class. And then, um, I'll have another guest that will be coming to that as well. Um, so that one I'm really, really excited about in 2024. Um, and then one of my things my list that I, that I want to do is, Uh, put some stamps out for scrapbookers. I know there's stamps out there now. Um, but that's just something that I've always wanted to do. So, yeah, that's on my, on my to-do list.

[00:39:25] Jennifer Wilson: Oh, I am excited to see what everything that you do next.

[00:39:29] Erica Thompson: Um, and for this event that I do have coming up that is cannot be announced, I'm gonna be using this collection a friend of mine designed, and I'm, I'm super excited about that. Not only that I can use this collection, but I'm really excited for her to get this collection out. Um, if people that follow me or people that know me, or people that met me know that, like I'm a huge cheerleader for all scrapbookers and all companies. It just makes me really happy that I can, I can use this collection of hers that she's, it's a digital, she has it as a digital, and I'm going to bring it to real product and use it for this event. So I'm super, super excited about that.

[00:40:07] Jennifer Wilson: Oh, super fun. Okay. I can't wait to find out what this is.

[00:40:13] Jennifer Wilson: So Erica, can you share again where we can find you online?

[00:40:16] Erica Thompson: So you can find me on Instagram at EricaRoseCreates also on YouTube as EricaRoseCreates. And um, also on Facebook as EricaRoseCreates. I'm also have my, uh, website, ericarosecreates.com. Um, where I sell scrapbooking kits, um, and different paper products, and then also scrapbooking classes.

[00:40:40] Jennifer Wilson: Ah, sounds terrific. Thank you so much for spending time with me.

[00:40:42] Erica Thompson: Thank you so much for having me.

[00:40:43] Jennifer Wilson: And for all of our listeners, please remember that you have permission to Scrapbook Your Way.

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