Saturday, May 29, 2010

A Gift Album and ANOTHER Use for My Digital Studio (with mini tutorial)

Last weekend Tom and I met friends at the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, MI.  Kristen brought me the cutest tri-fold shutter album!
The ribbon wraps around and goes under the medallion to close it.
Very pretty on the inside.
It is really long so I had to stand on a chair to get a pic of the whole thing.  There are two tri- fold shutter panels so it has as lot of motion when opened.

I wanted to add pictures of our day together right away so I ran to Meijer and had pictures printed (regular 4 X 6 size).  When I got home though I realized I had a problem as the pictures were too big to fit in the small spaces.  I was trying to think of a solution when I had a "lightbulb moment".   It occurred to me that I could use My Digital Studio to make the pictures the PERFECT size for each space.

Here is how to do it:
1.  Open a New Project - Photo Album - 8.5 X 11 Portrait - Create Your Own - Name your project - Blank page.
2. Measure the area where you want your photo to go and determine the size you want your photo to be.  (I wanted to be able to see the cardstock background so I made my main photos 1/2 inch smaller than the cardstock layer.)
3.  Add a photo box and use the rulers at the edges to make your photo box the correct size.
4.  Continue measuring and adding boxes until you have one for each area of your album. ( I copy and pasted 3 of one size and 2 of the other to get the sizes exactly the same.)
5.  Click and drag photos to the boxes and they will be perfectly sized for your album!
6.  Add mats and stamps if desired and print on photo paper.
I was so happy with how easy this was to do and there was the added bonus of being able to add mats and stamps in coordinating colors!!
There were some one-of-kind cars in the museum that were just incredible.
They have a great old fashioned Shell station.
Kristen and I had a great time talking about stamping (and some about cars, too!)
Many car owners brought their masterpieces to show off.
What a fun way to spend a summer day!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

On Point Scallop Square Cards and Gift Box Plus New UStamp Announcement

This is a glimpse of my second project I designed for the Big Shot UStamp session going on right now.  It is a set of four cards and 6 X 6 envelopes that fit inside a box with a matching pen.
The cards are made from various Big Shot dies.  Lots of layers and cool natural colors.
You can join at anytime!

Not only that but the next session of UStamp- Early Summer Edition 2010 has been announced.  And I am happy to say I am returning as a Guest Designer.  Right now you can enter a random drawing to win a FREE PASS to this session by clicking on the banner below and posting a comment on Dawn's blog between now and May 31st.   13 winners will be drawing through a random drawing.  Winners will be announced June 1.

I will have more information on another free pass giveaway at a latter date so be sure to keep checking here for updates!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

My Digital Studio - Multiple Pages with one layout

I LOVE taking pictures.  There are boxes and boxes of pictures from my pre-digital days.  There are files upon files on my hard drive (and safely backed up on an off-site external drive) now that everything is digital.  But I have almost none in photo albums or scrapbooks.  Kind of overwhelming.

But I am finding that with My Digital Studio I am getting more pages done so I can have scrapbooks to give my children.

It was sort of a revelation to me that I can make multiple pages using the exact same layout for each of my kids by just changing the pictures.  I am sure this is nothing new to a seasoned digital scrapbooker but it was for me.  I spent some time creating the first page and then the next FIVE pages where done in a matter of minutes!

I started with this sketch:
And made my first page:  (The background papers are from the geometric lines DSP pack - great for outdoorsy type layouts).
Then I inserted a duplicate page, deleted the pictures and in a matter of minutes I changed the pictures from one child to the next:
With just a few journaling changes I had 3 pages done each with unique pictures and details:
Next I inserted a duplicate page but as a mirror image.  I again deleted the pictures, added new ones and rearranged a few things and a page to complement the first was done.

I added  new pictures:
and changed a few words:
Three sets of double pages from one layout!   Maybe there is hope to get some albums done yet.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Stamping Garden

Stamping Garden

Wow! Am I excited!  I was asked to be a guest designer for The Stamping Garden online class that Cindy Grantham is doing.  You can learn all details by clicking on the above banner.   It will run from June 21-June 27.   Cindy's blog is filled with wonderful projects!  I love her use of little embellishments that adds the perfect touch to her samples.  Cindy is a gracious host and will make this a FUN class you can be sure.

Stamping Garden

Friday, May 14, 2010

My Digital Studio Frame Tutorial

Today concludes my three part tutorial for doing four layouts on one page and tips for using overlay stamps.
While making the blue layout  I was experimenting with various frame ideas to go behind the oval picture and really liked the end result.
Here is the step by step for this layout:
1.  Add the blue flowered DSP as shown in the the first tutorial
2.  Add the overlay stamp from the Vintage Overlay set.  (You need this layer to be at the back so you can work on top of it.
3.  Resize the overlay stamp as shown in the second tutorial.
4. Add a photo box.  Change the shape to oval.
5.  Add a mat using the color picker to choose a dark blue from the flower on the DSP.
6.  Add the swirl stamp from the Simple Friendship set.  Use the color picker to color it a medium dark blue.
7. Copy and paste a second swirl.  Use the "mirror image" button to rotate one swirl.  Position and send backward behind the photo.
8.  Use the square punch to make a rectangle that covers the oval plus a border.
9.  Fill it with the blue DSP.  Double click on it to open the crop box and move it to center the two main blue flowers.
10.  Reduce the opacity to the desired level and send backward behind the swirls.
11.  Add another square punch and resize to cover the DSP plus a small border.  Paper fill with Whisper White and send backward behind the DSP layer.
12.  Add a third square punch and resize to cover the white layer plus a small border.  Use the color picker to choose a green from the DSP.  Send backward behind the white layer.
13.  Add the "Cherish" stamp from Baroque Motifs set and "Every Moment" from the Enjoy Every Moment set.  Use the color picker to change both to a dark blue.

This is the fourth layout:
I did not add a lot to this one as the background is very bold on its own and already had the gray distressing in the upper half.  I simply used the color picker for the mat and stamps.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Using Overlay Stamps Tutorial and other Goodies

Yesterday I posted a tutorial for how to make four layouts on one page.  There are several reasons you might want to do this: cost savings on printing,  you wish to make 6 X 6 pages to fit in an album, or you wish to make A4 size layouts that you can mount on a card or cardstock base.

Today I am going to show a few tips I have discovered as I made these four layouts.  Especially how to use overlay stamps as several have asked me how to work with these tools.

TIP:  When you purchase the Vintage Overlay set they appear in two places.  Both in the "Stamps" section and in the "Designer Kits" under Designer Series Paper.  I prefer to use these as stamps rather than designer paper for several reasons.  First, you can not change the color of the overlays in the DSP section (At least not that I have been able to figure out)  They are a grayish color and you can reduce the opacity but they cover the entire layer behind it.  In other words it blocks out any paper or embellishments behind it unless the opacity is reduced.  Second, you can easily change the size of stamps to fit your layout.

Isn't the background paper just lovely?  It called Summertime Splendor - a just released set of Stampin" UP! digital DSP.  I chose four of the papers to work with for this project. Refer to yesterday's tutorial of how I got to this point.
Step by step for the orange layout:
1.  Add a photo box and photo.  Use the photo effects button to change the photo to sepia.
2. Add a mat.  Using the color picker choose a dark orange from the flower on the DSP.
3. Add the text.  Using the color match button choose a medium orange from the flower.
4.  Browse the stamps for the Define Your Life set.  Use the Choose Color button just above the Browse button- choose the color picker and choose a lighter orange for the stamps.  Add the now colored "because" stamp to the bottom right of the page.
5.  Browse the stamps for the Presto Patterns Overlay stamps. Use the Chose Color button and color picker to choose a medium orange from the background paper.  Double click to add the stamp.  Double click again to bring up the "object settings" screen.
 6. Make sure to keep the "Keep Proportions" button checked.  Change the width to 300 and press return.  This will change the height to the correct size.

TIP: The Overlays are sized for 12 X 12.  So to perfectly fit a 6 X 6 layout reduce the width by 50%.

7. Position overlay on top of layout.  I did not take a screen shot at this point but it would look like this with the other elements already in place.
8. Reduce the opacity to 20% or to desired level.
9.  Using Arrange - Order - Send Backward, send the overlay backward until it is under photo but still on top of the DSP.

This purple layout also uses an overlay stamp:
Step by Step (the DSP is already in place as shown above)
1. Add the photo box and photo.
2. Browse stamps for the Vintage Vogue stamp set.  Use the color picker to change the stamps to a dark purple from the DSP background.  Add the border stamp to the page and grab the corner to resize to fit the photo.  Use "copy and paste" to duplicate and "flip" to turn the border to fit.  Repeat for side borders.
3. Add text in a dark purple.
4. The "Once Upon a Time" stamp is from the stamp set by the same name.
5.  The overlay stamp is from the Presto Patterns Overlays as well.  Reduce size of the stamp by 50% as shown above. I did not reduce the opacity on this layout as I liked the bold effect against the strong background.

Tomorrow I will show you how I made that really cool frame around the photo in the blue layout.

Butterfly Daisy Chain Card Set

Each morning when UStamp in is session I pop over there and check out the days project (or projects).  It is such a fun surprise when my project is posted.  Well, today is my day!  Here is a peek at it.
It is a set of four cards in a little holder.
Of course it features lots of Big Shot dies and even uses My Digital Studio.
For the complete tutorial and lots of other ones too visit UStamp HERE.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Aaron's Graduation Pictures and My Digital Studio Tutorial - Four Layouts per Page

I just picked Aaron's graduation pictures up from the printer.  His senior pictures were somewhat of an adventure.  We had done a very fun camera shoot in our woods last fall.  The pictures were great and I had just downloaded them and was starting to do some editing when my computer crashed and I lost them!  I usually back up all my work on an external drive but I had not done so for a week or so when the crash happened.   Disappointing as the weather had turned nasty and all the pretty fall leaves were gone.  So we had to wait until spring --but spring took its own sweet time getting here this year.  We finally had a brief break in the weather and we were able to get some nice shots.  There are several more in the editing stage right now but we have these two done so we can send out the invitations for his openhouse.  Aaron and I have had a blast playing around with different editing techniques.  We make a good team!
Here is his openhouse invitation done on My Digital Studio:
It is made by designing in 1/4 of the screen then copy and pasting to the other three quadrants.  This is a 8-1/2 X 11 inch page making four individual invitations that are 4-1/4 x 5-1/2 that fit in A4 envelopes.

I was working on a similar project today using a 12 X 12 page to create four 6 X 6 layouts.  I have had some questions on how to do this so here is a tutorial.

1.  Start with Photo Album - 12 X 12 - Create your own- Blank Page.
2.  Turn off the Photo Page Bleed Area Guide
3. Add a Photo box and resize to 6 X 6 and position in the upper left corner.
4.  At this point you have two options.  If you are making 4 identical layouts as in the invitations above, work in this square to create your design.
Then group all elements together and copy and paste into the upper right quadrant.  Use the nudge arrows to tweak the position.
Copy and paste in the last two quadrants.
5. If you are making four separate layouts start as before with a photo box in the upper left corner.
6.  Copy and paste the photo box and position as shown.
7.  Copy and paste two more photo boxes and carefully position into the remaining quadrants.  (It helps to see the alignment of these boxes before adding designed paper and elements)
8.  Add paper to each photo box.
9.  Use the zoom function to enlarge the area to work on each 6 X 6 section at a time.
These pages can then be printed individually and cut apart to make four separate pages.  I had the invitations professionally printed through SU.  The paper that the individual pages are printed on is different from that of the calendars and cards.  The cards and calendars are quite heavy cardstock, while the individual pages are fairly thin and would work well with page protectors.  I have had a number of individual pages in both 8-1/2 X 11 and 12 X 12 sizes printed through SU and each was printed all the way to the edge and nothing was cropped from the bleed area.  If you are doing bound albums or calendars however you do need to be aware of the "bleed area" as these are cropped in the binding process.

I will have tutorials on how I did the individual layouts above as there were some nifty little tricks I discovered so be sure to check back.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Flower Folds Die 3D Tutorial

I have been playing around with my new Flower Folds Die.  Is it ever neat!  I like the regular flat flowers it makes but I wanted to see what I could do to make some 3D flowers with it.  This was my first attempt and I was pleased with the result.   
The vase is a "design-your-own" mug from the local craft store.  These were on sale as Mother's Day present ideas for $1.  I just added a piece of coordinating cardstock.
Here is the tutorial of how I made the flowers.  The key is to use a mister to wet the cardstock to make it pliable for shaping.

Supplies:  Flower Fold Die, Island Floral die, Trio Flower punch, cardstock and DSP ( I used Pretty in Pink, Tempting Turquoise, Old Olive and Kaleidoscope DSP), water in a mister, Tombo multi adhesive, corduroy buttons, small and large glue dots, paper piercer, florist wire, florist tape, wire cutters.

1. Die cut a flower using the second largest flower on the Flower Fold Die.  Cut a section out as shown.
2. Mist the flower with water and curl the petals up using the handle of the paper piercer.  
3. Flip the flower over and apply Tombo adhesive to the skinny petal.
4. Glue the skinny petal under the adjacent petal to create the flower shape.
5. Set aside to dry.
6. Repeat using smallest flower die to make the center of the flower.
7.  When the flowers are completely dry use the paper piercer to poke two holes in the center of the large flower.  
8.  Bend a piece of floral wire and insert through the center.  
9. Pull wire snug.
10. Poke a single hole in the center of the smallest flower. 
11. Insert a small corduroy button. Bend prongs back to fit snuggly against the bottom of the flower.
12. Apply a large glue dot to the underside on the small flower. 
13. Adhere to inside of larger flower.
14. Die cut one three leaf and two single leaves from the Island Floral.  Mist leaves and shape.
15.  When dry use mini glue dots around the hole of the three leaf  die cut and thread on the flower stem.  
16,  Punch a flower from the Flower Trio punch.  Poke two holes with piercer.
17.  Place mini glue dots around holes and thread on wire stem.
18.  Starting at the base of the flowers wrap stem with floral tape.
19.  Wrap base of separate leaves with floral tape.
20.  Arrange flowers in cup.  I used florist dry foam in the cup to make the arrangement stable.
So pretty!