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Europe Vacation 2015: Colmar, France

 

Europe Vacation 2015: Colmar, France

Our day continued as we went just inside the border of France to Colmar.  One of our goals was to try and be in as many countries as we could while we were in Europe, and this stop was our fifth country.  We had opportunity to explore the city streets and the stores before finding a street-side restaurant where we ate.  While we were waiting for our food I realized that we were sitting in the street right outside the birthplace of Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi – who was the sculptor of the Statue of Liberty!  His birthplace has been turned into a museum – http://www.musee-bartholdi.fr/

I followed the color scheme of the Colmar crest on the left hand side, bringing reds and greens into this spread.  I am not sure that I like the green that I used on this page, and if I were doing it again I would use a darker green.  I had two pages of red and two pages of green to make this spread.  The borders on one side of the spread, match the background on the other side.  In order to get enough of the red border to go behind the Statue of Liberty sticker I had to cut some out from behind the picture of my son by the river.  I usually don’t like to do this, but you can’t tell that this has been done once the pages have been put into the scrapbook.

I took a picture of the museum board so that I would remember where we had been, and I used that on this page to help explain the location, as I don’t like to journal because my handwriting is not neat.

Sightseeing, Tours, Attractions and Things to do in Paris

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Europe Vacation: Cannes and Nice, France

Europe Vacation: Cannes and Nice, France

Europe Vacation: Cannes and Nice, France

After our short few days in Barcelona, we headed back into France to visit Cannes and Nice, France. As I look back on this page I don’t find it particularly inspiring, but it does show a new technique that I started to use – using a round corner cutter to round the corners of the pictures.  This is a technique that I use often now as I think it softens the design.  You can see that I used it on the embellishments as well to create consistency.

Paris Tours

Europe Vacation: Corcassonne, France

Europe Vacation: Corcosonne

Europe Vacation: Corcassonne

The stop in Corcassonne, France was exciting for me.  Corcassonne is a medieval town built inside of a fortress.  I purchased a sword while in Corcassonne, which was quite an adventure getting through customs on the way back into the U.S.  The entire town had a cold gray stone feel to it, so I wanted the page to reflect the same drab feel.  I used gray background paper on the left side and a lighter one on the right side.  In order to tie the two pages together I reversed the borders on the pictures to match the opposite page.  As I look back on this layout I probably now would not have added the castle graphic to the left page. You can also see that my failure to correctly spell the town’s name in my journal led to an incorrect spelling on the pages.

Paris Tours

Europe Vacation: The Louvre – Napoleonic Apartments

Europe Trip: Louvre - Napoleonic Apartments

Europe Trip: Louvre – Napoleonic Apartments

Since we had so little time at the Louvre I decided to visit the historic part of the Museum after my short visit in the Art Section to see the Mona Lisa.  I was again struck by the amount of gold in the rooms as well as the astounding amount of red velvet.  For these pages I tried to mimic that design with red background pages and bordering the pictures in red and gold.  I used the fleur-de-lis embossing on gold paper to balance the design.  I was not using a digital camera and many of my pictures turned out dark, which I only discovered when I had them developed.  The gold borders around the dark photographs helps to lighten them to make the features more distinguishable.

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Europe Vacation: The Louvre

Europe Vacation: Louvre

Europe Vacation: Louvre

We had a very short time at the Louvre, and I decided that I wanted to see one of the most famous paintings of all time – the Mona Lisa.  I have to be honest when I finally got to the front of the line to see it I was fairly disappointed – it is smaller than I had imagined it.

I tried embossing for the first time on this page – if you look carefully at the white box on the left page you will see an embossed fleur-de-lis, a common French symbol.  There is another one in green to the right of the Louvre ticket stub.  While I think that embossing is a cool technique, it is not one that I use often because it is often difficult to see through the protective plastic of the scrapbook albums.

A design element that I used on this page was to have a post card of the Mona Lisa on the same page as my photograph of the same.  While this seems strange I wanted the higher quality postcard of the painting on the same page as my lower quality photograph (proof that I really saw it) . I also used white to border the photographs so that the white of the Louvre ticket would not stand out so much, and I think that it draws the eye to the photographs first instead of the ticket.

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Europe Vacation: Moulin Rouge

Europe Trip: Moulin Rouge

Europe Trip: Moulin Rouge

This was an interesting page to work on with my mother.  One of the Tour Options was to attend a show at the Moulin Rouge.  My only experience with the Moulin Rouge, was Baz Luhrmann’s theatrically version so I thought that I was in for some good can-can, but my only experience with the can-can was at Disneyland.  Boy was I wrong!  It took me about ten minutes to realize what was really going on, and by that time I was trapped in a corner dining seat and just decided to stay for the rest of the show.  As you can see from this page there were no photos allowed, which was a good thing, but I did want to put something in the scrapbook about it.  So I took the table assignment card and surrounded it by red craft feathers (not collected from the location 🙂 ) to commemorate the experience.  I like this page as it is a perfect example of a scrapbook page that has no photographs, but rather emphasizes the ephemera.

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Europe Trip: Arc de Triomphe

Europe Trip: Arc Du Triomph

Europe Trip: Arc De Triomphe

While in Paris I had opportunity to visit the Arc de Triomphe –  the Tomb of the French Unknown soldier.  This page shows the importance of writing down how to spell locations 🙂 – you can see that I spelt the name of the monument incorrectly on the page.  I actually just discovered this when I tried to Wikipedia the link above and was kindly informed that I had it spelled incorrectly.  I did not have enough pictures or ephemera to make a double spread so I took opportunity to insert a pocket page to hold maps and other ephemera that did not fit directly on to other pages.

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Europe Vacation: Notre Dame

Europe Vacation: Notre Dame

Europe Vacation: Notre Dame

While I like the look of this Notre Dame page, I have learned some things that I would now do differently.  I will self critique my work to give examples of how this design could be improved.

First, I no longer use letter stickers on my pages.  I have found that they are often not the correct size, as is the case on this page, and you end up with lots of letters that you cannot ever use.  I currently use my Cricut machine to cut out letters if I wish to Title a page like this.

Second, when I created this page I also had an affinity to stickers and I often felt obligated to use them on pages.  I think that this sticker is too small to be on this page, and seems to diminish the pictures rather than complement them.  I also would now not place the sticker in the middle of the open space, but would probably move it to the lower left corner of the space to de-emphasize the sticker over the value of the photographs.

Something that I still like though is the funny picture of the statue of the Saint holding his own head and the comment I journaled above it.  I still like to find quirky things on our adventures and make sure that they make it into our scrapbooks.  Currently though I enjoy hiding them in the pages, rather than pointing them out like I did in this instance.
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Europe Vacation: Eiffel Tower

Europe Trip: Eiffel Tower

Europe Trip: Eiffel Tower

The Eiffel Tower was one of the favorite things of my trip.  I had read in Fodor’s that the lines to go up the Eiffel Tower are often very long.  You can stand in line for over an hour to get a ticket for the elevator and then wait two hours to get on an elevator.  Fodor’s recommended that you buy a ticket to climb to the second level, and then buy a ticket on the second level to go all the way to the top ( Which is what those riding the first elevators have to do as well).  So that is what we did!  I will recommend it as a way to save time by not standing in line, but my legs were shaking at the end of the experience!

While at the top of the Eiffel Tower I could see that Paris is laid out very symmetrically and I wanted to reflect that in my design on these pages.  You will notice the very square angles and the use of green accents to mimic the wonderful gardens and parks in Paris.  I also included the two Eiffel Tower tickets which had been torn by the ticket takers.  At first I was a little frustrated by this because it ruined the perfect square, but was able to compensate for this by using a green diamond accent to fit into the space perfectly.

You will also notice that I combined pictures of the Eiffel Tower from a distance as well as pictures from inside the tower itself.  I will often do this as it is more important to me to have a cohesive view of a monument, than to keep all of the pictures in chronological order.  The pictures on this spread represent three different times, the night before, inside the tower, and about an hour after I had been in the tower.

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Europe Vacation: Paris, France: Eglise Du Dome – Tomb of Napoleon

Europe Vacation: Eglise Du Dome

Europe Vacation: Eglise Du Dome

While in Paris, France, we had opportunity to visit the Eglise Du Dome, the Tomb of Napoleon.  I was struck by how much gold was in this cathedral and wanted to display that on these pages.  Each picture is framed in a shiny gold border, and I used gold ink for journaling.  This set of pages is one of my favorites in this album.

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