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project life heidi swapp style

project life heidi swapp style

If you do “project life” raise your hand!!  MAN!! That is a lot of you! it’s such an amazing way to capture your DAYS and your WEEKS… and well>>>> LIFE!  Today I asked the lovely Jamie Pate to share her ‘heidi swapp-i-fied” Project Life style! I must say… I just LOVE Jamie’s approach… it’s SO HER! I love how it incorporated every aspect of this busy mom’s life… Jamie doesn’t ONLY tell her stories using Project Life, it’s just one of the creative ways she documents and creates… ok, I’ll let her tell you all about it… enjoy this… take notice of each and EVERY fabulous detail!


I love Project Life.
I love how it tells snippets of our family life.
I love how my children are always looking at our project life album.
I love that it keeps me motivated to keep photos organized and stories told.
So I loved that I had a chance to share my love for this approach at story telling.

One of my approaches to these Project Life pages is keeping it as simple as I can.
Being the mother of five, and home schooling every day, not to mention all the other activities we are involved with, well…sometimes I just plain get behind. When that started happening more times than not, I worked on keeping the process as simple as possible.

The only thing I buy specifically are the Becky Higgins photo pockets. This past year I purchased the variety pack, going forward I am only going to use either one or two different page pocket formats.  Thinking it would be easier to use the same page protectors throughout the year to simplify the process.

So I don’t buy Project Life specific journal cards or pattern paper or what not. I use what I have. So for this assignment, I was so excited to work with Heidi Swapp papers and embellishments for these pages and see how versatile they could be for my Project Life.

An approach that has really worked for me lately is to keep use a color theme when I am working in a particular month. This keeps the approach easier for me having a designated theme to stay with. So here is a look at a few weeks from September. September is obviously the first month of autumn and so I went with an orange theme and used No Limits and Color Magic paper with Color Shine to make it happen. It really speaks to me that the month is themed like this and sort of sets it off like it’s own chapter.

Notice the use of ColorMagic paper cut to size layered with Georgia Peach and Mustard ColorShine to match up with the orange in the NoLimits patterns. I also sprayed the “September” cut file the same. These pages also include Heidi’s digital brushes on photos,  BannerDelights as embellishments, plus ColorLabels for journaling or sentiments. Lots of paper punches and notched little flags from scraps of pattern paper. It’s so easy to use these products to put together a thematic Project Life with all the embellishments and the total versatility with the ColorMagic.

So let’s look at October and a bit more details on what works for me.

Often but not always I like to add a month-title layout. For October I used the VintageChic line with some ColorMagic and die cuts to show off our front porch mums. As much as I love Project Life and how it has really streamlined my approach to telling our family’s stories, I still very much love creating traditional layouts. So I allow myself the liberty to add those as well to my book and give myself the opportunity to play.

For the weeks of October I chose to go very neutral with pops of the Mint Green and Tropicana Teal. So for the most part I used the VintageChic pattern paper for the base of my pockets with a few pieces of NoLimits and rounded that out with kraft card stock in places.

My pages follow a bit of a template, if you will, to keep me on track and give my pages a cohesive look. Notice on these weeks that there is always a larger sized photo of the two year old. I started that after he was born, and have kept with it throughout these past couple of years. Every week it is a goal to get a photo of just him, knowing I will use it in that space. Looking back I wish I would have done this with all my children.

There is also a designated pocket for what I call the ‘week block’. It’s important to me to keep track of not only what week of the year we are in, but what dates span that week. Often I will add bullet point journaling to this pocket to highlight the activities of the week. I keep these weekly blocks the same throughout the whole month. By keeping this part of the page the same from week to week, I can make them all at once and call it done.

The other thing that is consistent from week to week are my photo sizes. I stick to just a few sizes when I edit. And since I print at home, this just makes the process a bit easier for me. I can almost, almost, mind you, organize, edit and print my photos in about a 30 minute time span. For me that is really important. My go to sizes in include 3×3, 2×2, 3×2 1/2, and then if I add a collage it is around 4×6 just like the toddler’s photo.

O.K…now for the pretty stuff…
Now mind you…just like anything creative, styles and approaches change all the time. Sometimes I hardly have any photos and there is lots to tell with words. And then sometimes the opposite is true. In the past I have been more journal heavy. Currently I am adding a few words to each of the photos if I feel the need.

I like to think of each of the pockets like their own mini layouts. Some pockets have more added to them than others. There is not really a formula I follow. I add just whatever I feel embellishes the photo or story. Sometimes a photo fills the whole pocket and then journaling fills the pocket below to tell that photos story. For example, notice above how the VintageChic Notes fit perfectly in the 4×3 pocket!   So many of Heidi’s products are perfect for not only making my Project Life pages somewhat pretty, but they are so useful to adding notes or journaling.

A few tips using Heidi Swapp products on your Project Life::

The digital Label Stickers are fantastic for these pages. Print out a whole bunch of them and use them everywhere. They have various sizes and colors to fit how you do Project Life, and they are one of my favorite products to use. Have you noticed them throughout my pages?

The Buzz Words, whether the packaged product or the digital product are perfect elements for the little pockets.

The Paper Banners are great for either embellishing or for jotting notes.

Not to mention the Mini Tags, Sentiment and Definition Stickers…are you kidding me??? Those are fabulous.

And the Clear Stamps…stamps are a must have anyway for Project Life in my opinion…but the clear stamps have perfect sentiments and arrows and labels and…oh my…hopefully you get the idea.

There is so much to this year long project called Project Life. There is so much I have learned and continue to simplify. I have attempted today to share a few insights into how this process works for me, and how much fun it is to use the diversity of Heidi Swapp products to make it unique. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave comments on Heidi’s Facebook page. I would be so happy to answer them for you.


Silhouette cutting cool words, titles, months  {{check}}

Lots of stamping {{check}}

Incorporating ‘Motography’ (instagrams)  {{check}}

TONS of layering with sassy elements {{check}}

Plenty of journaling so nothing is forgotten {{check}}

Unexpected unique uses of scraps and stuff on hand {{check}}

LIFE CAPTURED: {{check, check}}


This is stunning, amazing and oh, so inspiring! My little mind is spinning! THANKS mrs. Pate! Xoxo



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