Project Life Update | How do you make it work?

I had the pleasure of reading what you’ve shared on my previous post HERE about how you make Project Life works best for you. Thank you very much for sharing them and I had great insights of your PL.

Some of you are embarking on Project Life for the first time in 2012 just like myself, and some are regular project lifers for years. I’m sure for first timers like us we do feel apprehensive starting on a BIG project like this where we need to be constantly taking endless photos and documenting them every day or every week to make sure our pages are filled up. Even up to today after 7 weeks into 2012, I do struggle to make it a point to photograph my every day life, of myself, my family, what we do, what we eat, where we go etc. It takes a little more effort for some of us who are working full time. I always ask myself ” I am stuck on my desk from 9am-6pm, what do I want to photograph? My pen, my computer screen, my chair, meeting rooms, store room, coffee machine, spark plugs, LED lights, horns, bulbs, headlamps?”. By the way, I’m working with a German automotive company distributing vehicle parts, hence I mentioned all the parts name *laugh* Don’t be shocked at what I’ve mentioned. That’s what I do day in and day out but I’m enjoying it:D

So, how do we make it work for ourselves?

There are a few simple “ground rules” that works best for many of us.

Planning Ahead

Are you one that plans ahead what photos to use, layout for the week, printing of photos, taking notes, working on your PL a couple of times a week? I am partially but I just do not stick to my “ground rules” all the time. I have this little notebook that I keep just to write down dates and taking notes on what’s happening in the week. Some of you have schedule and planner to lay out the week’s activities. Some may not have anything planned ahead at all. If that works well for, then it’s great.

I will always make it a habit to download whatever photos I’ve taken with either my iPhone 4, DSLR or point-and-shoot once every 2-3 days and I saved them in folders that I labelled according to weeks.

I even have a special folder where I downloaded all the digital printables I purchased online or they’re offered free by some kind project lifers or digital designers.;)

I only select and print out my photos all at once during the weekend like some of you do but others would print them out gradually over a few days in the week. This works well for me because I would already have ideas which photos of my previous week I would like to include in my spread by the end of the week. Oh, my PL update is always a week behind.

And I also decide which photo pocket protector I’d like to use at the end of the week. I do not have a pre-planned layout I want to work on until I have selected my photos, decide on the print size and number of photos I want to include in the week. Thereafter, I’ll decide on the page design to use.

Whether you have a planner or you print your photos all at once in a day or you work on you spread every other day, whichever way you do, as long as it works best for you, that’s all it matters. Currently, I don’t spend my weekdays working on any scrapbook related projects or any crafting because after a full day at work, coming home for dinner and working with Ethan on his homework and getting him to bed, I only have a very little time left before I call it a day. I put together my weekly spread all in a single day and it’s usually Saturday. Then I would take photos of my Project Life, edit them and blog about them. All of these take time and I try to minimize my absence from my family time.

Using Project Life Kit or your own stash

I use both. I bought my Clementine Core Kit, binder and protectors from Scraplicious, the distributor of Becky Higgins Project Life products in South East Asia and Japan. I love the kit very much and I try to use the cards as much as I can, especially the blank journaling cards, they are super handy and I used them a lot with my own stash. Heather mentioned that she has just received her binder and protectors and for the rest, she will be using her own stash, which is embarrassingly extensive. Heather, I’m am with you!! I hate to say this but I think I have enough supplies to last me a lifetime even if I continue to do Project Life for the next 20 years!! *laugh*

Whether you use 100% of Becky Higgins core kits to fill up your pages, or you use 100% of your own stash or like me, I use both, they work all the same! There’s no “ground rules” saying that you can only use Becky Higgins core kit or your own stash. It’s really up to you. Personally, my main “mission” is to use up my own stash as much as I can so I can justify where my money was spent over the years! *laugh* Thank the Lord I have a full time job or else where am I going to get the $$$ to indulge myself in this. Don’t get me wrong, I love spending my own money on things that I love. I feel absolutely uncomfortable spending my hubby’s money. He’s very supportive in whatever I do, that makes me more guilty splurging his money on scrapbooking or my love for cameras.;)

Keeping it simple, eclectic or your style

I always admire Ali Edwards, Liz Tamanaha and Marcy Penner on how they work on their Project Life. Very simplified and yet is still amazingly inspiring. That’s their style. I am definitely a person who loves to add lots of bits and pieces onto each card and pocket. That’s just me and my style. I love the way my spread looks. I always beam in pride when I flip through my finished pages. Not because of the goodies I added, but it’s exactly the way I want them to look together with the pictures and journaling. I know I’m going to fill up my binder really quickly with the amount of goodies I added to my pages for the last 6 weeks but I don’t really mind. Ill just get another binder or two. What’s there to fret when I can document a year’s worth of my life and reminisce the good times and bad in years to come.

iPhone, Blackberry, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, DSLR or Point-n-Shoot

Does it really matter if you have the best camera to capture your everyday moment? Well, I have all types of cameras, Canon DSLR, Olympus micro-four-third, Fuji Polaroid, SX-70, Lomo LC-A, Mini Diana, and a whole long list of other cameras I owned, and not to forget my faithful iPhone 4. Whichever camera system that you use, they’re all the same. You’re capturing the everyday moments, not capturing with the best cameras. You get what I mean?;)

I used to lug my gigantic Canon 7D around with me most weekends when I’m out but that thing weighs a ton! My shoulder aches badly after a couple of hours and I dread bringing it out over time. So, after getting my Olympus Pen E-PL2 and iPhone 4, I used them a whole lot more. They’re lighter, smaller and not so intrusive, especially if I want to capture images in places that requires discretion. And so these days, I use my Canon only at home, except on special events or road trips or outings. And with iPhone, I can play a lot more with their cool apps, especially Instagram! Have I mentioned to you before I’m an Instagram addict?;)

Whatever it is, make your Project Life process in the most comfortable, easiest and affordable (time & cost) way you want it to be. Make sure you enjoy the weekly documenting. Sure I do whine once in a while when I need to sort out my pictures, edit and print them, putting my spread together but I do manage my time carefully and I really enjoy Project Life a lot!:D

Anyway, here’s the second part of my post about my week 6 in progress, some new goodies I received last week and some inspiration I found over the web.

You may want to pop by Melissa Stinson, Linda, Tammy B and Theresa Marie‘s blogs for some awesome Project Life inspiration! Love their weekly spreads. So much eye candy!

I ordered a couple of fabric tapes over at Etsy two weeks ago and I received them with a big smile on my face last week. They’re sooooo pretty and I can’t wait to use them!

And here’s my work in progress yesterday on Week 6 spread. I’ve been working my pages on the floor for weeks because my table is a tad too small to lay out everything on the table. Just too bad I can’t upgrade to a bigger table because the room in our apartment is just too small. That’s Singapore anyway. We live in a tiny box! *laugh* I’m darn lucky to have a room for my scrapping and to stash away my gazillion goodies.;)

For Week 6, I am also using some printable journaling cards from Paislee Press which I purchased over at Oscraps.

Ok, that’s about it for today. It’s a long post so I hope I don’t bore you to death with so much words.

I’ll be back again for my Week 6 update soon!

And don’t forget to enter my giveaway HERE. You have until Wednesday to stand a chance to win 2 of my kit packs.

Thank you once again for making time to stop by my blog and all your lovely messages!

Have a great evening!:)

  • libbywilkoFebruary 20, 2012 - 12:44 am

    Love, Love this post Leena! Thank you for sharing your process… I’m a first timer tooand I. love seeing all the different ways people do project life.

  • Jette GadFebruary 20, 2012 - 4:08 am

    Thanks Leena – this post is so helpful. I am doing PL for the first time as well and even though I usually photograph a lot (like really a LOT, lol) the project has made me more aware of taking also the everyday life pictures – not just the perfect lit ones, the ones where my kids are all clean and cute, but just the ones where living is going on – and I love it…
    Also wanted to share a great tool I use – maybe others can use it too – I downloaded the Momento app for min iphone – to be able to journal anytime, anywhere if I want to – easy peasy…
    Also – the meta browser app keeps track of the date of my iphone pictures – that app is actually free.
    I look forward to following your inspirational blog – thanks for sharing.

  • MerdreyFebruary 20, 2012 - 9:28 am

    Hey hey, i’m so inspired by your project life that i think i’m going to attempt to start on it! From yesterday! Who says you have to start right at the beginning of the year right? Thanks for all your sharings and love!!

  • Linda in AusFebruary 20, 2012 - 3:25 pm

    Hi Leena, wow I feel so very honoured to be linked on your blog, thank you. I finished week 6 on Sunday and had better go and do a blog post. Loving those washi tapes they are really pretty.
    Have a great week.

  • Jackie O.February 20, 2012 - 8:53 pm

    I enjoy reading your posts and I like the way you go about organising your PL. Thanks for sharing it with us Leena! I especially love thoses sweet washi tapes, they are really pretty.

  • Tracey HoldykFebruary 20, 2012 - 9:23 pm

    Just wanted to say a huge thankyou for the tutorial on collages by picasa. I loved it and was thrilled how mine turned out. I turned it into a layout and created a pocket at the back to hold my journalling. It looks great in my PL album. Thanks again.
    love me :-)

  • Tara KennedyFebruary 20, 2012 - 11:57 pm

    Thanks for always being so helpful. I love your PL posts. Quick question…what type of paper are you printing those journaling cards on? They look GORGEOUS with that texture.

  • HeatherFebruary 21, 2012 - 12:46 am

    Great post! You are so helpful and full of good tips!! I’m really, truly happy I found your blog. Ok, my PL status is I’ve been taking pics and organizing them – using “OhLife” to document/journal daily, but I haven’t exactly started working on my PL yet. I spent this weekend working on science projects with the kids, and I had a card order to fill. Not that those things are done, I’m really hoping to dig in. All of your info has been so helpful in motivating and inspiring me though. I joined Picasa and have been loading/organizing my photos there. I can not wait to print out my first collage. The tutorial you gave seems so straight forward and easy.

    I laughed out loud reading my own words (about my “embarrassingly extensive” stash). I’m honestly glad to know it’s not just me :D.

  • FindingnanaFebruary 21, 2012 - 12:46 am

    Hi Tara,
    I used Bazzill Basic Paper white texture cardstock to print the cards. I tried out with smooth surface cardstock but the texture paper produced the best result, in my opinion. :)

  • FindingnanaFebruary 21, 2012 - 12:53 am

    Hi Jette,
    Thanks so much for sharing the apps you used to journal your notes. I’m also going to download the meta browser apps you recommended as I’m having a tough time remembering the exact date of my iPhone pictures. I have thousands of them! *laugh*

  • Ellie A.February 21, 2012 - 1:24 am

    Oh SUPER FUN.. I still am carrying my DSLR about even though its funny I keep pulling out my Iphone 4 for most pics I’ve been taking the past couple of weeks. I feel as if I don’t have it w/me I’ll miss a pic that would have been better if I would have had it ha.. BUT I’ve learned to LEAVE it when I am just running errands (mostly) I SO love PL its been such a wonderful way to document. Looking back at last year and this year already has been so fun to see what I did that day last yr. is SUPER FUN. Now that fabric tape looks SUPER YUMMY :)

  • NaddyFebruary 21, 2012 - 5:35 pm

    Great tips Leena :)

  • Jessy ChristopherFebruary 22, 2012 - 10:09 am

    I have a good read about ur PL & I think it should be applied to scrapbooking projects too. These days I hardly use my DSLR too except for taking my completed projects. iPhone 4s is my ultimate companion and I love it!!

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