Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Free Layered Template for Digi Pages

Ok...so I have to admit that making digi pages is kind of fun! I was browsing through Oscraps today and found a link to this free Layered Template by Paislee Press. It's a super easy way to make a layout in Photoshop, especially with her fantastic tutorial as a guide. I added a texture and some brushes and it still looks way too "clean" for my normal type of layout. I like it though...

This is my friend's oldest daughter, Ashley. Isn't she beautiful?

Monday, December 28, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! Now that Christmas is over and things have begun to slow down a little, I thought I would share some of the projects I made this past month.

The first one is a home decor item made from a wooden board. I painted it and added the vinyl saying. Then I made the little houses to hang from each of the three decorative knobs. The base of the house started out as a die cut. Then I covered it with paper by Graphic 45, some trims, and other embellishments. I thought it would be fun to create a set of houses for each season and change them throughout the year.

Here's some extra houses that I turned into large tree ornaments:

Here's some mini versions (also made using an AccuCut die) that I used as gift tags as well as smaller tree ornaments. I love how they turned out and they added an extra special touch to everyone's presents.

I was thinking of this quote from Winnie the Pooh the other day and decided to make it into a hanging plaque for my friend. I created the print in PhotoShop and decoupaged it onto a small board. I thought it would look really cute hanging from a peg or shelf. She loved it!

I made some 8x8 calendars for the grandma's for Christmas. I will post those later this week. Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My 1st Digital Page!

OK, so I'm still not sure this will become a habit, but I decided to try my hand at creating a digital layout to give to my husband for Christmas. There were parts of it that were frustrating (especially since I don't really know what I'm doing), but it was still faster than creating a paper layout.

I have been downloading free digi kits from 2 Peas and Oscraps and other places for a long time "just in case" I ever figured out what to do with them. Well, here is the result:

Embellishments: Erica Hernandez "Feeling Bookish" from 2 Peas in a Bucket; Paper: Erica Hernandez "November 2010 Freebie"; Frame and Paint Swatch: Jessica Sprague; Textures: Flickr; Fonts: Adler and Karabine.

I used a lot of the techniques I learned in my Jessica Sprague photo editing class...adding textures, masks, text, etc. It was kind of fun and I like how it turned out. The project was inspired by the StoryPeople quote shown on the page. I'm going to print it out in an 8x8 size and frame it for one of his gifts.

So, what do you think for my first attempt?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Porter's New Year's Day Crop

In between working, chasing kids around, Christmas shopping, baking, and a million other things, I have been helping to plan our big New Year's Day crop at Porter's.

I am so excited about the products we get to share in the paper crafting kits for that day! My Mind's Eye designed an exclusive paper pad that is not available in stores. It is one of my all time favs!! The colors are perfect and reflect something for every season. So as a design team, we decided to create some 1-page layouts AND an 8x8 calendar. It was so much fun to design!

Here's a peek at my part of the assignment:

Here's my 12x12 layout. The little quote says, "No matter the weather I'm glad we're together." I wanted to imitate all four seasons by using vertical strips of patterned papers across the top half of the layout. The swirl at the bottom is lots of fun and anchors the whole page. The little yellow heart is made from felt that is stapled into place. (Felt is my new favorite)!

Now, on to my 8x8 calendar pages. I made one set and then decided they were way too complicated for the short amount of time we had to create all of them. So I redesigned them to be more simple. The die cutting will be the most time consuming, and I will already have some of that done for our customers.

here's March...

(It really needs a title. Mine is going to say "Relax." They can add whatever they want there).


...and December. (More felt!!) :)

I'll post my "complicated" pages later.

If you are in the Idaho Falls or Rexburg area, please join us on New Year's Day. It will be so much fun and it's a great bargain too!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Free Scrapbooking Fonts!

I was searching for a certain font (PeaMissy) and just stumbled upon the motherload of free scrapbooking fonts! Have a look here.

Click on either the "Fonts for Peas" link or the "Free Scrapbook Fonts" link. There is a button down the right side of her blog where you can download them all at once or you can pick and choose which ones you want. Each of the two links has different types of fonts, so you can really stock up!

Have fun!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

AMAZING Paper Piecing on Ebay!

Quick! Look at this amazing paper piecing on eBay before it's gone! This woman truly has a knack for details. I looked and looked at her photos but was still surprised with the tiny details still to be discovered after reading her descriptions of each page. It's a beautiful piece of art! I think it would be cool if this was photographed and made into a children's book with peek-a-boo flaps and hidden elements. It could keep a child busy for hours!

Monday, November 23, 2009

St. Nick is Here!

As promised, here's a look at some fun Christmas projects I made this weekend using Bo Bunny's St. Nick collection. I love the vintage Santas and the pretty patterns as well as the rich colors.

Maureen Wilson, a member of the Porter's design team, created a project last year using a wooden "Joy" and a mat and frame. I was assigned to make another one this year using a different collection of papers and stickers. Here's how it turned out:

Surprisingly, this project was easy to make and only took a short amount of time. You can easily alter the look by using different papers and stickers or changing the mat and/or frame.

My next project was this fun Christmas banner. (Check out the December issue of Simply Handmade for step by step instructions for making a similar one).

I love how versatile banners can be. You can create some for holidays, birthdays, and other family celebrations. Here's a brief overview of how to make one:

Start with a chipboard base and cut into as many triangles as you would like. I found the perfect triangle pattern on the Maya Road website here. (Just scroll down until you find the "Book Templates." Then click on the triangle shaped book and a PDF file will pop up that you can print out).

Decorate the chipboard with bits of patterned paper, rick rack, and ribbon. Die cut stars (or any other shape) and letters to spell anything you would like.

I discovered a super easy way to attach glitter to the die cut letters without making a big mess. First, die cut your letters from cardstock. Then, run them upside down through a Xyron sticker maker. This will attach adhesive to the front of the letter.
Then sprinkle them with glitter and shake off the excess. It's as easy as can be and virtually mess free! (I loved the Martha Stewart glitter for this project).

Attach the banner together with wire or ribbon. You can leave a little space in between each pennant for tying bits of lace and ribbon if desired. Attach part of a Christmas pick to each end and finish off with some more pretty ribbons.

(I apologize for the quality of these photos. They were taken in the basement of the store and the lighting there was horrible)!

My last project for today is a simple layout I made using some scraps of paper:

Bo Bunny's "Buttons and Bling" were perfect for creating this little tree embellishment. There were still plenty of buttons left over that I plan to use on some Christmas cards later.
Happy Scrapping!


I know I've been horrible about blogging regularly, but I have a good excuse. It all boils down to the chaos of being a mother to my 2 boys. :)

One of the many projects we've been working on at our house is a model of Jamestown for my 13 year old's History class. He had less than a week to complete it from start to finish. It's made mostly from popsicle sticks, cardboard, and poster board. Throw in a little paint and sand, and you've got a 3 foot model of the first permanent English settlement in the United States.

The fort was shaped like a triangle which might be great for defending itself against attacks, but not so great when trying to build it out of popsicle sticks. We finally got it to work out and Taylor was happy with the results.

Here's his Jamestown sign and the front gate.

A close up of one of the cannons with a cannon ball shooting out of it. (He loved that part the best).

We took the project to school last week for grading. It wasn't easy to maneuver because it was so big. (Taylor didn't mention it could be smaller than 3 feet. His was the biggest one there!) We had to turn it sideways just to get it through the door.

I thought for sure they would keep all the models on display for a few days at the school since all the kids worked so hard on them. But no...we got to bring it right back home the same day. Now it is sitting in the middle of my living room floor. What do you do with a giant model of Jamestown? After all the hours of labor he put into it, you can't just throw it out right away. Besides, I will most likely end up helping with another one in a few years when Cam is old enough...I wonder if we can just use the same one?!

So I promise there will be some Christmas project ideas posted tomorrow. I worked on some this weekend for Porter's and they turned out really cute. So stay tuned!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Using Scraps

We have a neighbor lady who has been very sick for a long time. We decided to cheer her up with a big, bright, happy card from all the Primary children in our ward. I was trying to get this made at the last minute and only had scraps to work with. But I love how this turned out! It's amazing how a little of this and a little of that can turn into something that makes me happy to look at! :)

Papers: Bo Bunny, Cosmo Cricket; Dies: QuicKutz
This is the outside of the card. It's 12x12, just like a regular sized layout, because we needed lots of room for all the kids to sign their names inside.

This is a shot of the inside of the card before they wrote in it. It looked so cute when it was finished with all their little kid handwriting! We delivered it to our neighbor on Sunday since it was her birthday. She loved it!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

28 Photos!

I've been working on this fun Christmas layout and trying to find a way to put lots of pictures on one page. (I can't be the only one out there who takes a bazillion photos during the holidays, right)? If I counted right, there's 28 pictures on this layout altogether! How do you ask? Well read on...

I started out with little 2x3 photos (Read my last post to find out an economical way to print this many pictures). I created a grid that spanned a two-page layout and filled in the space with 2x3 bits of patterned papers as well as my photos. Then I created a large flap that lifts up to reveal even more!

I was able to showcase everyone in the family this way. It was a lot of work, but I love how it turned out! I used the new Christmas collection by My Mind's Eye and the matching die cut page turned out to be really handy. It included the journaling blocks, title, and little punch-out embellishments that I could fill in empty spaces with. I also used stamps, QuicKutz dies and other flat embellishments. Ultimately, I ended up with lots of journaling space, lots of photo space, and lots of places to embellish. What more could a scrapper ask for? :)

This type of layout would work great for any event where you take lots of pictures or want to summarize a period of time. Think "Year in Review," school, or holiday themes.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Photo Cropping Made Easy

I love creating "Gratitude" layouts. Even though the things I'm grateful for stay pretty constant from year to year, I think it's fun coming up with new ways to express them.

This layout was inspired by the phrase "Counting my Blessings." I thought it would be fun to substitute falling leaves with numbers to symbolize the abundance of blessings we receive each year. I also wanted a way to include lots of pictures on the page but keep the layout linear. My solution came in the form of 2" x 6" photos. This way I was able to add 7 photos without overwhelming the overall feel of the layout. I left one photo in color, because I wanted to showcase the beautiful autumn colors as well as the temple, and changed all the rest to black and white.

Papers: Pebbles; Dies: QuicKutz; Stamps: American Crafts, Hampton Art; Border Punch: Fiskars; Cork: QuicKutz; Other: felt, buttons, pins, ribbon.

While reading through the September 2009 issue of Creating Keepsakes, I ran across an article by Jessica Sprague about a cool technique for getting multiple photos on one 4x6 print. She taught how to create six 2x2 photos on one print and I used the same technique to get two 2x6 photos on one print. I have looked all over the internet for a link to this and haven't been able to find one. So I will share with you how it's done. Please keep in mind that I am NOT a Photoshop expert at all, but this is what worked for me. (This tutorial came straight from the Creating Keepsakes magazine...I have just changed the dimensions to create the photos for this particular layout).

1. Open two photos. Go to File>New>Blank File to create a new document. Set it to 4" wide, 6" tall and 300 pixels per inch. Click OK.
2. Double-click on your first photo in the Project Bin to switch to it. Select the Crop Tool. In the Options bar at the top of your screen, type 2" for the width, 6" for the height and 300 pixels/inch for the resolution. Click and drag over your photo to select a crop area. Double-click inside the selection to commit.
3. Select the Move Tool. Click and drag the cropped photo down onto the thumbnail of your new document in the Project Bin at the bottom of your screen. When Photoshop Elements switches over to your blank document, click and drag your photo to position it as desired. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each photo.

This is what your 4x6 print will look like when you are done. Simply cut them apart to attach the photos to your layout.

I love using this technique for printing wallet-sized photos as well. It's a real money saver and takes the guess work out of cropping manually. Give it a try!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Celebrate Fall!

Autumn is one of my favorite times of the year. I love putting on sweaters, drinking hot chocolate or hot apple cider, and snuggling up in my Minkee blanket with a good book. I am inspired by the vivid array of fall colors that surround the beautiful area we live in. It really puts me in the mood to scrapbook!

Orange has never been a favorite color of mine, but I have to say that when it comes to fall, I make an exception. We always have to take the traditional photos of carving pumpkins and the kids playing in the leaves, and orange seems to be the perfect accent!

I created this layout using the new "Boo to You" collection by My Mind's Eye. I loved that these papers were not just about Halloween. The owls were the inspiration behind this layout. I thought they were too cute to resist and matched perfectly with the QuicKutz owl die I had sitting around.

The idea for this layout came from a sketch I found online. I changed it up a little and spread my photos across the bottom of the layout. There's room for up to 10 photos and lots of journaling.

Here's a few more Fall layout ideas I have created over the past year...Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

We R Memory Keepers

Last weekend I got to play a little bit with some new papers from We R Memory Keepers. I only wish I had time to create some more! I have a half-finished layout on my desk that I wanted to post along with these. But maybe it can be a bonus idea in a few days.

First off is the Geo-Hectic collection. It's great for all things boy! I love the die cut edges and lined papers, but I especially love these giant metal brads! I used some of them to create my title in this simple layout:

Also included in this collection is some cute foil tape in the shape of gears, 3-D stickers, glitter brads, acrylic $1 stamps, and matching textured cardstock. Cute, cute, cute!

Next is the "Twirl" collection. Who wouldn't love this? The colors are bright and vivid and although a bit girly, I was still able to use them on this page about me and my boys.

I used the 3-D stickers for my title and some of the embossed cardstock stickers to embellish throughout. The little bird, song notes, and journaling block were all created with the cute $1 stamps.To see more of this collection up close, click here and scroll down a little bit.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Great "How-to" Blog

This is just a quick post to point you in the direction of a great crafty blog I found today. The Pursuit of Craftyness has contributions from some well known designers in the industry. I LOVE the tutorial index you will find down the right side of their blog where you can link to some great step-by-step instructions for anything ranging from how to color felt to making cards from recycled materials.

I really love this post about how to make your own journaling labels. I might have to try that with my QuicKutz dies.

There's some great inspiration there, so take a peek when you have some time! You can also become a fan on Facebook. They have a link on their blog for that as well.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Halloween Treat Bucket

I made this Halloween Treat Bucket awhile ago and thought it would be fun to share it now.

I started with a 1 gallon clear paint can and some double-sided paper. I trimmed a sheet of paper to the same height as the can and carefully slipped it inside. By placing it inside the can instead of attaching it to the outside, it solves two problems:

1. You don't have to figure out how to cut your paper around the round metal deals that hold the handle into place.
2. You don't have to worry about any adhesive showing through the can...either on the inside or the outside. See? Easy, peasy!

Next, I created a label on my computer that says, "Place treats here. (No tricks allowed)." I framed this with some chipboard that I cut by hand and attached it around the can with some thin ribbon.

Finally, I added some matching chipboard embellishments to the title and also hung some from the handle with twine. I placed some arrow rub-ons on the outside of the can, pointing the way to the opening where anyone can drop in some candy (just in case they needed help finding their way there)!

I like how the can looks dimensional with elements on the inside and the outside. It was fun to make and Cam used it for trick-or-treating last year. It was a real hit!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Fancy Pants Halloween Collection

I'm in denial that it could possibly be Autumn already. Where did the summer go?

One thing I like about the changing seasons is the new collections that start rolling into the store. Among the many Halloween lines out there, Fancy Pants "Trick or Treat" is one of my favorites!

For one of my classes at Porter's, I wanted to show people that you don't necessarily have to use these papers for a Halloween layout. So instead, I created a boy page that's all about the weird things they do!

I used the Tim Holtz chains to "hang" some of the photos from and to give the yellow monster something to dangle off of. I love all the different sizes of googly eyes too! It was a fun layout to make and has space for lots of photos or some more over sized monsters.

My boys aren't excessively noisy or dirty, although if you saw their room today, you would wonder. However, there have been days I've come home to things splattered on the ceiling (imagine Olive Green Glimmer Mist on my vaulted living room ceiling..."I don't know how that got there, Mom!") or bicycle tires floating in the bathtub (that's a story for another day). They do have some funny quirks, as I'm sure most kids do, and they seem to be oblivious to dirt. But I can't imagine my life without them...dirt, slime, noise and all!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New Color Tool!

Have you heard about the great new color matching tool offered by Scrapbook.com? It's a really great resource for choosing a color scheme for all your paper crafting projects. There are a few different options when using it.

First, you can upload a photo and the tool will give you an idea taking colors from the photo itself. You can choose if you want to use monochromatic, triadic, complementary, etc. You can also choose the option to have the computer show you a simple layout sketch using the photo and the color scheme you choose. If you don't like the initial suggestion, you can click on different colors to change things up.

The second option is to use a color wheel tool without uploading a photo. It's a great way to choose colors for a layout that you might not normally think of. It definitely helps you design outside of the box!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Goodbye Scenic Route!

I was so sad to receive an email from Scenic Route saying they are closing their doors. From the start, they have been one of my favorite scrapbooking companies. I first met Sarah Milne, founder and designer for Scenic Route, at an expo in Utah when they were a brand new company. I took some classes from her and she was so gracious and very, very talented! I fell in love with her beautiful products there.

Right now on the Scenic Route website, they are having a huge liquidation sale. You can get products 10-80% off with prices decreasing over time. Once a product is gone, though, it's gone.

Here are just a handful of layouts I've made with Scenic Route products over the years. There's lots more in my albums, but it could take all day to scan and post them all.

Farewell Scenic Route! :(