Thursday, November 30, 2006

Uh Oh Here Comes Trouble

Hurrah more photos of my layouts. Hubby finally had time to take pictures of my layouts and i think the photo of this one has come out much better than the first one.
This placement of the paper and photo was inspired from a layout i saw in Simple Scrapbooks magazine (forgot what issue). This is one of my favourite layouts.

Materials: Textured cardstock: Bazzil Basics Paper; Patterned Paper, Stitched Tag: Chatterbox; Alphabet Chipboard: Heidi Swapp; Acrylic Paint, Word Tile and Alphabet Stickers: Making Memories.

If you can even read my really bad handwriting...congratulations!! Personally i detest my handwriting and i've even bought a book by Heidi Swapp called Love Your Own Handwriting which has exercises in it. I have not had a chance to go through the book properly yet (as i have tons of scrapbook idea books and magazines to read) but one of the things that Heidi Swapp strongly advocates is the use of your own handwriting in your pages, regardless of how bad it is. One day, when i'm long gone, perhaps my great grand children will look at this page and yes they will probably say "Damn what ugly handwriting great grandma had" but at least they will know what my handwriting looks like. Hee.

The original journalling that i had drafted for this picture was about my hopes and dreams for Ty and how i hoped that he would follow his own personal dreams but my brother-in-law said that it did not match the cheekiness of Ty's photo. And how right he was!! Cheers JW. (By the way, i still have not found a photo to match my original journalling...meaning to say there are no angelic photos of Ty!! LOL)

The MM Alphabet Stickers were stuck on white cardstock and painstakingly cut out by hand with my trusty Precision Tip Cutter Bee Scissors in order to make them stand out more. I was lucky enough to find acrylic paint (Poppy) for my raw chipboard letter 't' that perfectly matched the cardstock.

Tip: The front of the page looks normal but turn the layout around and you'll find gaping holes behind the picture and patterned paper. I cut them out as no one looks at the backs of the layouts anyway and I get to keep the cutouts as scraps for diecutting, punches or even as mats for other photos.

NB: The photo of Ty was taken by Hubby in March 2006 with my brother's trusty Canon 10D.

Sunday, November 26, 2006


My family held its 13th Annual Golf Tournament today at the RBGCC. The golfers played in the morning and the rest of the family met up for the luncheon which was at Grandstand 3 (a really great venue cos it is air-conditioned and large enough that we weren't all squashed together). It is always an occassion for fun and laughter as the family is quite extended and we do not really meet each other on a regular basis.

More often than not, i would have to ask who the little kids are and what are their names. A sign that i'm getting old as i can never remember all the names of my second cousins. But what i cherish most on these occassions are the photo opportunities that we have for the older members of the family. The missing faces of many loved ones today is a stark reminder for me to treasure the time we have left with so many of the family and more so, how important it is for me to try and scrap the photos of loved ones and to tell their story or the stories of events like today which we all enjoy and look forward to each year.

The scrap pages of such loved ones can be passed down to the younger members of the family who i am sure will treasure the photos and memories as well as the chance to get to know their elders albeit from created pages. I just hope that i am able to do this for my family and to do it well.

This is a picture of my grandfather at the 13th Annual Chua Trophy held on the 26th November 2006 and the inspiration for my blog today. The event was hosted by the family of Chua Kong Ann this year and the prizes for the tournament and lucky draw were fabulous (i-pod shuffle, home entertainment system, 2 mobile phones, digital camera, polaroid cameras, movie tickets, meal vouchers and more). Grand winner of the trophy this year was Uncle Adenan who has won it once before. 2nd place went to Uncle Brahim who has won the trophy twice before. 3rd place went to Sa-Chek (3rd uncle). My dad has also won the trophy twice and Tua-peh (eldest uncle) has won it once. So 7 wins out of 13 for my immediate family is a pretty good record i think and one that we are all so proud of!!

Friday, November 24, 2006

What is Scrapbooking?

My hubby is away on business at the moment so i'm unable to upload any more pictures of my layouts. So i thought i should finally write something about what scrapbooking is about.

In brief, scrapbooking is basically an extension of a photo album. Its more personalized and can be an outlet for your creative side. But to be really honest, i haven't got a creative bone in me at all. My layouts may not be as stunning as others and i may not be as quick in designing a layout but they are an extension of me and i'm proud of them all the same. So i do not believe that you have to be arty to do scrapbooking. A person just has to develop their own style.

The key thing about scrapbooking is that you need to make sure that you use acid and lignin free products. From your glue to your papers and embellishments. If you look back at your childhood photos, some of you may find them yellow with age and maybe even spotty discolourations. Apparently, if we had kept those old childhood photos in acid and lignin free albums, such discolourations would not have occured. The idea of scrapbooking with such products is that your photos will now last for generations to come and if you add meaningful journalling and captions, your kids, grandkids and great grandkids will be able to enjoy your albums as family heirlooms even after you are long gone.

Glue is another important factor for me personally. When i was in secondary school, the teachers used to give us handout notes which we were supposed to stick into out notebooks. I used double sided tape sometimes instead of the standard UHU stick glue and i remembered that after about a year or so, i could actually see the outline of the double sided tape thru the note paper. The paper would also turn yellow rather quickly. So if you were to stick your photos into your album with such double sided tape, i think you'll find that over the many years to come, your photos would eventually form the same discolourations.

When i started scrapbooking, i used cardstock and paper bought from stationery stores in Brunei that were not specifically acid and lignin free. Mainly because i had no choice available to me at that time. But i made very sure that all my glue (bought from Australia where i was first introduced to scrapbooking) were acid free.

For scrapping, one will need tools for paper crafting. If you're just starting out and are not sure about whether the hobby is for you, all you will need are a pair of good scissors, a craft knife, a ruler, a paper cutter (optional if you are good with a knife, ruler and a cutting mat), glue and a pen. I am really anal when it comes to my tools so i have different scissors for paper, glue and cardstock. I have different rulers for cutting, measuring and tearing. There is no need to invest in a tool kit unless you are really serious about the craft and if you are, then i would recommend the Making Memories Deluxe Tool Kit (see below) which will cater to your every need.

Once you have the tools, go develop your photos. Get some paper, cardstock and an album to keep your pages in and off you go.

Sunday, November 19, 2006


When I started this blog, I just thought to make it an informative blog about scrapbooking in Brunei and the "trials and tribulations" that we Bruneian scrappers have to go thru in order to get supplies (well ok not so much of tribulations really...hee). But my brother mentioned to me that my blog was pretty un-interesting (in his words...boring...thanks Dude) as it contains no pictures at all.

Then on Saturday, at the grand opening of Shabby Chic, some friends of mine directed me to a blogspot called and i was blown away. My orignal idea was to remain anonymous but now i realized that a scrapbooking blog should not be so and that i could do so much more with the blog. It was great fun to read Ruey's blog and Ruey, if you do come to Brunei as my friends have said you might, I would so love to meet you.

So now i have decided to change the objective of my blog. I'll still try and keep it as informative as possible but I will also try and upload my layouts (tho few they may be and so amateur-ish). I figure it will also be a good way for me to note down the materials used on the layouts and the story behind the layouts themselves. Who knows, i may use the same for a future layout on my scrapbooking.

Now the only problem i have is that i do not own a scanner at home. Attached below is a trial run done by taking a digital photo of my layout "Simply Amazing". My brilliant hubby did it for me last night and i so love him for it!! Just so you all know, i'm simply hopeless with IT stuff.

And another big shout out to my hubby whose digital layouts have been uploaded onto the blog's main page. Hurrah!!

Materials: Textured Cardstock: Bazzil Basics Paper; Patterned paper: Flair Designs; Alphabet stickers, foam stamps and acrylic paint: Making Memories; Epoxy stickers: Plaid; Corner rounder punch.

This was a fun layout to do. The mosaic tile paper actually came in a 12x12 sheet (bought from Scrapping Gals). It didn't seem to work right by puting the entire paper on the layout so i decided to cut out the individual tiles (super easy with EK Sucess's Cutter Bee Scissors). I was going to hide the journaling about how much Ty loves bathtime, especially bubble baths, with a 'pull-out' behind the focal photo but my hubby liked it clean and simple as it was. So this was a rare layout for Ty with no journalling or captions at all. Photos were taken in March 2006 (we took tons of photos during that month cos we borrowed my brother's Canon 10D with a 1GB memory card and went absolutely crazy!! It also turns out that my hubby is a pretty good photographer).

So now my blog site looks completely different from when it first started. We have had to change the colours of the site in order to accentuate the layouts better. I think it's looking great and i can't wait to upload more stuff onto it.

"Shabby Chic" in Brunei

Yesterday, a close friend virtually made my day with a simple phonecall. She rang me to tell me that a scrapbook shop called Shabby Chic (what a great name) had opened in the Gadong Mall. It was advertised in the BB and there was even an article on it in the back pages.

Wowee!! I couldn't contain my excitement and drove straight there after lunch. And there it was, on the 3rd floor right next to Solitude the bookshop. It turns out that the owner, Irene, is the sister of a friend of mine. The shop has a good variety of supplies from essential tools, albums, patterned paper, cardstock and embellishments such as brads, eyelets, stickers, rub-ons etc in all the big brand names from USA (Making Memories, S.E.I, Bazzil Basics, Wild Asparagus and Chatterbox to name but a few). I'm pretty well stocked up in terms of tools and supplies but even then, it was fun to browse around and examine stuff personally rather than online thru a computer screen. It was also great fun to chat with Irene about scrapping.

There was also a tool table for people to try out the various scrapping tools available. Irene has the Sizzix and Sidekick die-cutting machine for customers to try. I have never seen the Sizzix machine close up and it was fun trying it out finally. Personally, it is a little bulky but then you have the Sidekick for portability. The dies are also pretty bulky but you can pretty much arrange your paper or cardstock on the template that you want and run it thru the machine. So it helps in not wasting any cardstock or paper. I have already invested in the Quickutz so am not looking at acquiring the Sizzix or Sidekick at all but it is nice to finally try it out.

My brother-in-law pointed out to me just afer i started this blog that perhaps i ought to write something about what scrapbooking is all about as a starter. A really good point but i think i will leave that for another post. At this moment in time, if any of you would like to know what scrapbooking is all about, make a stop at Shabby Chic. Irene will be able to show you firsthand what this is all about.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Scrapping magazines

The best place in Brunei where you can buy scrapbook magazines is in Booker International in Gadong. Without fail every month, they will have a couple of copies of Creating Keepsakes, Scrapbooking and Beyond and other British publications (sometimes there have Australian magazines too). Once they even had copies of Memory Makers. The unfortunate thing about Booker's magazine supply is that, as i was told by their staff, they do not have a say on which magazines they bring in. The selection is sent from Singapore with no input from Booker's staff.

I would buy Creating Keepsakes and Memory Makers whenever i come across them. But i've stopped buying Scrapbooking and Beyond as it does not quite fit my style of scrapbooking. The British publications are also not quite up to par but they often have freebies which makes them a tempting choice. Scrapbooks etc. is a pretty good magazine but hard to find. It is a really good buy as it is the only publication that costs less than $10. When i do by chance visit Paul and Elizabeth's Bookshop in Yayasan, i have found it on sale there but that's only 1 in maybe 5 visits if i'm really lucky.

What i do now is subscribe for my regular magazines thru Scrapping Gals. I only get 3 publications which are Creating Keepsakes, Paperkuts and my favourite, Simple Scrapbooks.

So check Booker out if you're interested in getting the magazines. Be warned though, they sell out pretty fast so be quick.

Internet Sales

I'm not sure what the season is in Singapore but my favourite scrapbook online site, is having a sale on all items. And its pretty fabulous too. 20% off all normal priced items and an additional 10% off any sale items.

Another pretty good site, is also having a sale on. I've never really looked into scrapbooking cove until recently and was pleased that i did as i found that it had some supplies which i had been looking for for quite sometime now. Things like twill tape and Making Memories Antique Brads.

The only thing about ordering from these sites is that they are based in Singapore and i'm living in Brunei. There aren't any scrapbooking shops in Brunei and a Bruneian scrapper's only hopes are online orders. I've taken to getting friends and family to bring my orders home for me if anyone visits Singapore as shipping costs can be quite expensive.

Another good site to order from is of which i am a consultant for. The best thing about this site is that if we have enough orders and lump them all together, the shipping costs are free.

If you are interested in starting scrapbooking, do check these sites out. The Singapore sales are till the end of the month only.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Card making

My son had a minor operation on Monday and i took 3 days off work to stay home and take care of him. While he slept most of the day there wasn't much to do and since we recently connected to e-speed at home, i spent most of that time on the net.

I finally had the time to go back to My Place ( at and explored it carefully. Did one other blog there (as this one had was not formed till later in the day) and uploaded the pictures i had taken of the cards i had made (yes...all 3 of them).

At the time of the making of the cards, i was really proud of the results but now when i look back at the photos of them, i'm beginning to have second thoughts. They look so simple...too simple actually and too plain. Now don't get me wrong, i am still proud that i actually made cards to give away (2 weddings and 1 thank you) and i did have a real good time doing them so no regrets there. The only drawback about card making is that you don't get to keep them in an album. You give them away and never see them again. So sometimes it's really hard to take out those precious (and usually expensive) scrapbook supplies to be used.

I try now to use my scraps for making such cards so as not to waste. And regardless of the fact that card making will eat into my supplies, i will continue to make them and will continue to give them away.