Artist Spotlight

How removing expectations keeps Anika Lacerte inspired



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Anika likes art journaling, scrapbooking, photography and DIY projects. She is an introvert; her Myers-Briggs personality type is INTJ. Anika lives in a small town in BC, Canada with her husband and their two girls.

Each month we want to feature YOU GUYS! You are all such amazing artists and inspire us so much. We want to be able to shine the spotlight on some members of the Get Messy community who are making awesome stuff and sharing it wildly.

For our first spotlight, we are so excited to introduce you to Anika from The Handcrafted Story. Anika has been with Get Messy for quite a while and has been art journaling long before that. She has a beautiful and distinct style she has developed and we are so inspired by how she uses sewing in a big way on her pages. We asked her to share a little bit about herself and her process with us. We hope you are itching to try some new techniques by the end of her interview!

Why do you love art journaling?

I love art journaling because it allows me to experiment with materials and techniques. Art journaling inspires me to keep being creative.

What is your journal of choice?

I’m not currently using a journal, instead, I use super thick pieces of white cardstock. thick, white cardstock.

What are your must-have supplies?

  • Plain white paper (the cheapest printer paper I can find). I use this in my typewriter and for practicing brush script.
  • Thick, white cardstock (I bought a pack from Michael’s: Recollections brand, 110 lb.)
  • Black pens. Try more than one pen until you find your favourites. I reviewed some on my blog.
  • Scissors.
  • Found paper. Thrift stores are a good source for sheet music, book pages, paint chips, printed photos, and scrapbook paper.
  • Sewing machine. For most art journalers this is not a must-have supply but I can’t imagine not using my sewing machine.
  • Typewriter.

Describe your process.

I like to make art journal pages in batches, which means I often have three or more pages that look similar. I pick a style, technique or material to try and then make a few pages. I have become addicted to using my sewing machine on paper, instead of glue.

What is your ‘go-to’ technique, inspiration, etc for when you don’t know what to make?

When I don’t know what to make, I look at my art journaling board on Pinterest, it hasn’t failed me yet.

✨ Free class for creatives ✨

In How to Start Art Journaling, we’ll walk you through the art of art journaling, including how to start doing (🙌) and make your very first art journal page (even if you’ve never even opened an art journal before).

Do you have any tips for beginners?

  • Start. If you’re nervous or doubting yourself, just start. I tend to overthink and over-research, so if you’re like me, I recommend just starting. Pick up the pen and make a mark.
  • Copy. As you make pages, you may notice a common theme of elements you like to add. I know that I will like my pages more if they include sewing and book pages. So look for art journalists whose style you like and see what supplies they use. For example, I enjoyed (and recommend) the book “Art Journey Art Journal” by Nichole Rae and noticed some common elements she uses are: typewriter (she puts one word per line), book pages, sheet music, paint chips. Another art journalist I like is Katie Licht who uses common elements like paper collage, layering lots of paper, book pages, and graph paper.
  • Share. The Get Messy Art Journal group is a friendly, encouraging bunch. Share your work in progress. Ask for advice.

What are your best tips for sewing on paper?

  • Try it. If you’re thinking about it, try it. If you have any questions, I would be happy to try to help.
  • Use thick paper. You are putting holes in the page, so it helps to use a thicker paper and pick stitches that are not super detailed.
  • Assign a needle for sewing on paper. Use a different needle for sewing fabric. You will likely notice the needle getting dull after sewing on paper.

More details on the blog.

Tell us about your typewriter and how you use it for art journaling.

I found my typewriter at a thrift store. At first I thought it didn’t work, then I realized I was simply pressing too hard. My typewriter can’t handle the thick paper I use for art journal pages, so I use plain computer paper or graph paper in my typewriter and glue or sew it to the thicker page. I set the margins on the typewriter so the text is easier to line up.


Last year, Anika shared an Advent Art Journal on her blog. If you’re interested for 2015, you can find out more on her blog.

This year she made an 2015 Art Journal Calendar and is lovely enough to share it with all of us. Free download for my favourite art journalers (no longer available).

Thanks so much Anika! We can’t wait to pull out our sewing machines and get started stitching! 

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Anika Lacerte

Anika likes art journaling, scrapbooking, photography and DIY projects. She is an introvert; her Myers-Briggs personality type is INTJ. Anika lives in a small town in BC, Canada with her husband and their two girls.

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