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Five years ago….right around this time of year, my journey in the world of paper crafting began. At the time, I had no idea, or for that matter, the inclination, that it would become such an integral part of my life. I had a robust quilt pattern business and was teaching quilting classes around the country. Due to family circumstances, my quilting had to go on hold for a bit and I stumbled into paper crafting. It is a path that I began to follow and I have have never looked back. From the very beginning, I have specialized in mini albums. I approached paper choices much the way I selected fabric for a quilt…..I looked at color and pattern of individual sheets of paper, not at collections or manufacturers. My first complete mini album was a tribute album about my late father called A Life Well Lived. Several papers in that album were from Graphic 45. So I guess you could say, Graphic 45 has been a part of my paper crafting journey from the very beginning…..

In 2011, I nervously applied for, and  was honored to be selected, as part of the Graphic 45 Design Team. I have always been drawn to their paper and it seemed to be a perfect fit. I have always felt that their paper is unique and different from anything else out there. (I know now it is because every design shows a little bit of Diane’s heart). I had planned to stay on for just the year of my term. Some one very dear to me “encouraged” my to try out for a second year and I was again honored to be selected for the 2012 team. I can say from experience that Graphic 45 is a true standout in the industry. Not just because of their amazing and unique products, but because of the the people behind the scenes. They were/are not just industry colleagues, but they became good friends. They treat their DT like family, and once a member of the Graphic 45 family, you never really leave.

During my first year on the team, Graphic 45 implemented a new rule for their DT….you could only stay on the team for 2 years and after you were off for a year , you could reapply. Much like after that first year, I didn’t anticipate trying out again…..yet here I am. As many of my long term followers are aware, 2013  was a tumultuous year for myself and my family. The issues that brought me to paper crafting in the first place came to a crescendo and I struggled to get through a very difficult time. Thankfully, things have taken a huge leap in a positive direction and we are doing the best we have in years. Over the past few months I have been contemplating the direction I hope my paper path would go….one thing I do know is you can’t force the direction. Everything has a time and a place to become what it is suppose to be….

So, while I didn’t expect to be taking this step on my path, I know in my heart it is the right step to take. I am doing this for me, as a birthday present to myself. My journey with Graphic 45 is not yet complete. So it is with the same nervous anticipation that I felt in 2011 that I present my audition for the Graphic 45 2014 Design Team:

 

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My Graphic 45 2014 Design Team Audition

While pulling just a few of the many images I have that feature Graphic 45 paper, I felt as if I was strolling down memory lane! Ahhh, it has been a delicious journey! It is ironic that I made the decision to do this while I worked on a recent project with Graphic 45 papers. I will also be starting a new project on Ustream tonight with….Graphic 45 papers…maybe it is a good sign…

Laura

I have a WOWZER project planned if I am fortunate enough to make the top 30….Charee, it is the one I told you about in Anaheim…the one that I just didn’t have enough time to complete for CHA…it is already under way regardless….

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