Wednesday, May 18, 2011

One Crafter's Guide to Mass Production (Multiples): Part 3

WARNING: This is a LONG post, grab a drink and a snack and enjoy!

Part 1 is here
Part 2 is here

First things first I grab the camera, make sure I have batteries and my memory card. I can’t count the amount of times I didn’t do this first and I regretted not being able to write a tutorial or share my project with you guys. If I plan on blogging the project I set up my little ‘studio’ (if you knew how ridiculous this sentence was you would laugh until you pee, more on this later) so I can take pictures of the pieces as I set up.

If I really like a specific piece of paper I always save the bar code strip so I can find it again
Then I start by using this basic order, modifying as needed
1. Choose all my papers and embellishments

2. Punch, die cut, slice and score any elements I need

(I always make 4 extra of anything I need, in case of bad stamped images, spills or just plain losing something)

3. Stamp EVERYTHING, images, sentiments what have you

(as we know I do not always follow this advice, trust me STAMP FIRST)

4. Color, glitter, paint whatever might need to dry for a while

(If I have parts that will need Tim Holtz Crackle Paint I would have done those first since they take a very long time to dry and crack up properly)

5. Distress and/or Ink any edges that require a pop of color

6. Cut out stamped images and sentiments

7. Organize materials in a line at the top of your work area in the order you will use them

8. Adhere pop dots to dimensional pieces
I rarely lay out my pieces so neatly with coordinating paper as a buffer, this is how you know I staged the shot
Once all those are finished I start to assemble. For the Easter Chicky Favors I punched all the lolli holes, folded all the bases, glued them together, added all the accent papers, tied all the ribbons, added all the pink stamped scallops and chicks, then added all the lolli’s and placed them in the basket. I guess you could say I create them in layers instead of completing one and a time until it’s finished, I do each layer on all 20 then add the next layer to all 20. From concept to completion these 20 took about two hours (with a diaper change, snack preparation and taking the process pictures)
Sewing up sections of a banner is the same as any other multiple project, the only difference is that they create one big masterpiece in the end...      
I want to take a moment here to note that these steps are not always done on the day I am going to create. There are those rare Saturday or Sunday afternoons when my oldest is playing with a friend, the 2 year old is taking a nap and my husband is probably also taking a nap, when I get uninterrupted crafting time.

This is not the norm; usually these steps are a few nights in the making. Sometimes I make a bunch of templates when I am feeling crafty, not really knowing what the occasion will be to use them. If I have a specific project in mind (like favors for a holiday) I might start a few weeks ahead and do a little here and there (stamp and cut one night, paint or die cut another night), storing the pieces in clear plastic shoe holders labeled with the project name on top (I just use masking tape so when the project is done I can peel it off and reuse the container for another WIP).

I would really love to hear about everyone's process. Where do you get your ideas? Do you like to make multiples or all one of a kind projects?

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