Scrapbook Design Teams: Interview with Tristann Graves of A Cherry on Top

Dana Hinders
Tristann Graves

Many scrapbookers who enjoy creating layouts featuring their friends and family dream of gaining exposure for their work by participating in a design team. While design team members often have an impressive fan base, they are first and foremost crafters with a passion for scrapbooking. If you want to become a design team member, there are plenty of opportunities available to help you reach your goal.

Interview with A Cherry on Top Design Team Member Tristann Graves

A Cherry on Top Scrapbooking Shoppe design team member Tristann Graves is an accomplished scrapbooker who has been published in many magazines and books. Recently, Tristann took the time to answer a few questions about what it's like to work on a design team for an online scrapbooking store and how you can gain exposure for your work.

How long have you been scrapbooking?

Actually I've been paper crafting and collecting "memories" all my life. But when a friend introduced me to the new world of scrapbooking in 1999, I was immediately hooked, since it allowed me to combine my love for crafts with my love for preserving my memories.

How would you describe your personal scrapbooking style?

I would say I'm a contemporary scrapbooker who changes with the times. I find that the new styles of papers and embellishments really move me and dictate the style and the mood of my designs. Scrapbooking is like music for me. I always have my old favorites, but I'm constantly adding new releases to my collection as well.

What made you decide you wanted to be a design team member for A Cherry on Top?

I became a forum user at A Cherry on Top shortly after the store started their message board. I participated in their contests and board activities, while sharing my layout creations with other members. A few months later, in March 2004, I was asked to join their newly formed design team. I was extremely honored to represent A Cherry on Top (ACOT) and showcase the products they carry while providing new ideas and inspiration to the ACOT customers and community.

What are your responsibilities in this position?

As a design team member, my responsibility is to promote A Cherry on Top. I provide examples, ideas, and inspiration to the community by using products that the store carries. I also help build the ACOT community by assisting in online activities such as crops, contests, and challenges. As a design team member I try to inspire and teach others in the area of scrapbooking and paper crafting. I also serve as the manufacturer coordinator for the team, contacting the manufacturers for product for some of our design team reveals.

What is your favorite part of working on a design team? What is your least favorite part?

I love working with the new products and thinking of ways to showcase it so the customers and the community can see how to use it in their scrapbooking and paper crafting products. I also enjoy working with and meeting the other design team members. There's so much creativity and collaboration on the team that you're constantly learning and growing as a scrapbooker.

My least favorite part would be the mess I've made after a scrapbooking spree. I get so caught up in the creative process that my supplies end up everywhere. I'm actually a very tidy person, but when I'm in creative mode you could never tell. Once I've cleaned everything up again, it only lasts a few days until my next scrapbooking binge.

Are you involved in any other scrapbook-related activities?

I've been published numerous times in magazines and books including Scrapbooks, Etc.; Memory Makers; Paper Crafts; Scrapbook Trends; Paper Trends; Cantata Books; Memory Makers books; Stamping, Stationery & Scrapbooking; Scrapbook Dimensions; Scrapbook & Cards Today; Memories Community; PaperKuts; NanC and Company books; and CorrespondenceArt. I've also been honored as a featured designer for Bisous, and a guest designer for Dream Street Papers and Adornit Carolee's Creations.

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in becoming part of the scrapbooking industry?

Don't be afraid to try new things. I've discovered that some of my best creations come when I push myself to try new products or new techniques. Also, don't be afraid to be yourself and find your own style. At the end of the day, these scrapbook pages you're creating are for you and your family. You've got to love them first and foremost. Anything else is a bonus. Everyone has different tastes and styles and the industry is so big that there are lots of sites and communities looking for a range of styles and skills. You just need to take a chance and try out when sites and magazines put out calls for designers and projects.

Be persistent. Keep trying and learning from others in the industry. Like anything, it takes effort to grow and learn.

Additional Information

Tristann's Layouts

Bug Lighthouse
Daddy's Girl
How to Spot a Fairy
True Blue Love
Scrapbook Design Teams: Interview with Tristann Graves of A Cherry on Top