Sunday, March 28, 2010

Circle Journal & Swapper Check-In

Hello Crazy Crafters! Just before our blog went live, our group decided to do a journal swap (For the Curious) . And while I don't want anyone to feel left out because they didn't get signed up in time, I also want to encourage the ladies in the swap to share their work with you here.

We all need feedback and especially praise ;) So even though the swap doesn't apply to all our members I will be sharing the swap with all of you via the blog.

For those that haven't heard of Circle Journals ... and don't feel bad because we only just recently heard of them too! Anyhow, circle journals are like altered books or scrapbooks. The group will swap books with each other, every swapper creating a page in some one else's book. So when the swap ends everyone will have a book with beautiful artwork from the rest of the group.

There is some structure to the swap. Each Crafter can dictate some rules of engagement for working in their book, and to keep us on track every book will have a theme and some design specifications.

Our swap decided to give each crafter a month to create a two page spread in each of the books. At the end of each month we'll swap books until we've made a complete circle with the books.

So far our CJ (Circle Journal) swappers should have their books nearly ready for swapping. During the first month of the swap each participant was asked to do the following:

1) Pick a book. It can be any size, it doesn't have to be a traditional journal or even a traditional album! The majority of us in the swap chose to go the Chipboard album route.

2) Choose a Theme! Each swapper chose a theme for their journal. This theme dictates what the book is about as well as how each swapper will create their spread in your book. There are millions of varieties of themes, you can be as specific or as vague as you like. Here's a great list of themes we found when researching theme ideas: Link to Themes

3) Set Some Rules! It's your book and you know what you want, so let us know what you want! Without being too over controlling give your book some rules or design specifications. Tell us what colors you'd like us to use, how much glitz you expect, how you'd like to see crafter's interpret your theme, etc. But, please keep it simple but to the point, don't want to bog the swapper's done with too much fine print ;)

4) Design Some Pages! Decorate your cover(s) and do a spread with the rules of your book or an introduction. Create a page for all the artists to "sign-in". It can be as simple as tags for the artists to just sign, or little cards with pictures and biographies. Be as creative as you want with this! Remember that you are setting the feel for how you want your book designed. And lastly create the very first spread of your book, following your own rules & theme.

5) Start Swapping! Each of our swappers have been given a list of names. At the end of the month the book will pass to the next name on the list. Each swap the crafters have one month to create a spread (aka 2 page layout) in the book in their possession.

I hope you few (but we're very thankful!) readers will enjoy seeing some of the journey and behind the scenes chatter as we strive to finish our first ever swap! And if all goes well you'll maybe even join us in our next swap!

So with all that out of the way .... Where do we stand swappers? Everyone feel pretty confident about our April 1st swap date? I know I have yet to hand out the swap list, but other than that does anyone feel like maybe they need more time before we swap? We can delay the start date by up to a week to give you more time if you need it.


  1. I'm ready! Just have to stop adding pages to my own book! =)

  2. I did not know about doing a two page spread of my own to start, but I think I can do something fun and simple by Wednesday.

  3. don't forget Nichole you can all ways add on to it when you get it back in 8 months! lol!!

  4. I'll be ready! Lindsay may be slightly delayed. As long as the books are swapped by Monday I'm happy :)