We want to thank Shimelle for taking the time out of her busy day to share a little bit about herself with us! So grab your drink of choice, curl up in your favorite place and say HELLO to Shimelle!
Tell us a little bit about your creative process. Where and when are you most creative?
I work (and play!) from a studio space that is a room in our home with the outside ‘wall’ actually a floor to ceiling window. The light is beautiful even on grey days, which we have plenty of here in London. For many years I was a night owl, but my son is not on board with this plan and likes to get up far too early, so my most creative time is whenever I have five minutes uninterrupted really, almost matter what time of day that may be.
What are some of your must have supplies?
My giant scissors have been on my desk for so many years that they feel like an extension of my hand. I could give plain cardstock a miss entirely but you will have to pry the patterned paper, little tiled letter stickers, and glitter Thickers from my cold dead hands.
Who are some of your influences?
I was a film and theatre student when I first discovered scrapbooking, and much of my inspiration comes from that visual world: Wes Anderson, Mary Blair, and even Busby Berkeley.
3 things people probably do not know about you.
My family tree is a long line of performers in one way or another. My mother is a musician and my grandmother still sings several shows a week.
I take great joy in the extremely trivial craft of coordinating-but-not-exactly-matching family clothing.
I grew up in Kansas and came to England as a student but knew within the first two weeks that this would be home.
Book Alice Through the Looking Glass
Movie Romeo and Juliet.
Candy do they still make Butterfingers in America? They do, right? I’ll say that.
Drink coffee. Except I haven’t had caffeine since 1996. Sometimes this is frustrating.
Music there is little I don’t like but I have a serious passion for Sigur Rós.
Color really? I have to pick? Aquapinkgreenpurpleredblack. That’s just an unfair question so I’m giving an unfair answer.
TV Show Buddy the Vampire Slayer (though for current things, I’m glad Designated Survivor has come back!)
Can you share how Glitter Girl came about?
I was at the end of a year-long video series for Two Peas in a Bucket (an online shop that has since closed) and we were happy with what we’d done with a series of twelve videos over a year but at the same time, it didn’t always feel right to lock into a single topic for a whole year when trends can change so much over that time. I really liked the idea of working with the community and involving them, so I pitched the idea of a scrapbooking superhero who kind of flew down to the message boards to give a surprise video response each week to one of the discussions. I pitched it totally out there bonkers hoping they would say yes to something, even if it was less – like once a month could work so I said once a week. They loved the idea and took it on board pretty much exactly how I pitched it. I think we did 122 episodes with the store? Then a while after the shop closed I was able to start the series again and now the questions come from those who watch and comment on YouTube or post on the Scrapbook Like a Superhero Facebook group. There’s no single shop involved and everyone is welcome, no matter the style you scrap.
We love the little by little collection! Can you tell us what inspired you when creating this collection?
Thanks so much! Little by Little is inspired by British children’s literature, and you’ll find references to Harry Potter and Peter Pan if you take a look. I wanted the colours to be a real highlight of the collection, that you could work just with pastels for one look but switch it up to primaries on your next page and then again with black and white plus a bold colour of your choice. I hope the variety gives you so much versatility while you craft.
Have you always had a love for design?
Perhaps an appreciation for design is a better term for me. I never took an art class after elementary school (until the last few years when I’ve done some study to broaden my skills) and although handwriting and lettering were something I can see developing in the notebooks I have from my youth, I didn’t know where to start with drawing or painting. I could see it in my head and then just nothing would come close on paper. I was quite embarrassed about it so I just stopped doodling, which is really the worst you can do in terms of keeping your sketches improving. But I did use the time to absorb so much visually so I developed a much stronger idea of what I liked. I don’t regret that chain of events though, because it has been quite enjoyable to learn essentially a whole new aspect of the craft at this point in my life, just since working with American Crafts.
What is one thing you love about the scrapbooking industry and what is one piece of advice you would give to someone just starting out with scrapbooking?
I love how the industry creates products that become a neverending mix of unique pieces on unique pages. I dabble in crafts that ask you to follow a pattern and I can enjoy a sewing project, something to stitch, and so on. But scrapbooking is my passion because every page is its own creation, from start to finish. I love that feeling when your words come together in a way that you wonder if anyone has ever said that before in the history of the English language, and I love that same feeling when mixing and matching supplies de new and old collections across dozens of manufacturers.
If you’re just starting now, be true to yourself and don’t stress. Today’s photos can easily be reprinted if you decide you don’t like something and want to start again. Don’t be scared out of something that feels right to you- for years I printed all my journaling with fonts because someone told me I should. It’s been ten years since I did that on a single page and I’m so much happier for it. Whatever it is that makes it joyful for you, keep doing it no matter what trends tell you.
How would you describe your style?
Relatively simple at the core, but filled with colour and pattern, and always created with a story in mind. In fact, that’s how I design products as well as my pages: if I can think of ten different stories scrappers might be able to tell with a particular product, then I know that’s something I want to include.
Shimelle thank your for being a creative superhero and connecting with our readers! You can check out the Scrapbook like a Superhero Facebook group HERE and also find Shimelle on Instagram and Twitter! Thanks so much for stopping by today and have a wonderful rest of your day!