Thursday, July 31, 2008
There is a front and back to the blade. The curved edge is the BACK of the blade. The front (leading/cutting) side is the straight, slanted edge. (In the picture, the leading side of the blade is pointing down.) When you place the blade in the template, put the back of it up against one of the connected edges to start. Make sure the blade is perpendicular to the template. You don't hold it like you would a pen or pencil. Slide the blade around the template. If yours has corners, there is a trick to them. Just life the blade ever so slightly as you get to the corner and go slowly. Often it will make the turn without requiring you to pull it all the way out.
Once you have completed your tracing of the template, it only takes a few snips with the scissors to have a finished product.
It's important not to get any nicks in your template. They keep the blade from moving freely around the design. If you do get a nick or slice, try filing it down with an emory board. That has worked on a couple of my templates, but not all of them. The ones where I was the most reckless had little hope of repair.
I'd love to see how you are using your Coluzzle!
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
- I love the "feel" the page gives and the artwork just "fits."
- I really love the simplicity of (it). I would have never used paper garden like that in a monochromatic page. This has inspired me to relook at that set.
- I was immediately drawn to it!
Brandy took the challenge with this great layout from a cruise. She added shells from a necklace and stitched it together with Citrus Leaf Sassy Strands. She even graced us with a companion piece of her own, shown below.
There were several comments about all the layouts as well.
- All the layouts are so amazing!
- Thanks for sharing!
- It was really hard to choose the best one!
- They are all really nice!
- I love the dimension on the layouts
- There is such a wonderful job with the colors!
August challenge sketch will be up soon! Won't you consider joining us??
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
- an acrylic stamp set and block (see through - I've never tried this with a rubber stamp, but I would think it would be next to impossible to get it right.)
- 2 or 3 stamp pads in like shades - yellow and lighter and darker greens, for instance.
- spritz cleaner and double scrubber
- scrap or project cardstock - white, colonial white or light neutral color
- tissue or paper towels to wipe off excess ink from the stamp or block
Now, choose your stamp and mount it on the block. Use simple images - 1 object only - like a leafe or heart. You can use either solid images or intricate ones, and one of my favorite things to use is a solid leaf stamp that has a separate stamp of veins. Whichever you choose, ink it up in the lightest shade of ink that you have. Stamp the image onto your cardstock and clean off the stamp.
Next, (this is where the rolling part comes in!) roll the edges of your stamp in the next darker shade. If you are only using 2 different inks, skip this step and go to the next one! Make sure you get a little more than just the edges of the stamp when you roll it. Ideally, the center-half of the stamp will be left clean. Line up the stamp with the image you've already stamped. If you are using CTMH acrylix stamps and you've taken proper care of them, you won't have any problem stamping the new image directly on top of the first one.
Bonus technique! Try using the bottom of the acrylic stamp as a base and then stamp your image on top of it. Now it won't match up perfectly, but that is part of the charm. I've used this technique with sentiment stamps and loved the effect. I used a light color with the back to get a random shape and then stamped the sentiment across it in a coordinating color. Here, I used the back of the leaf to give a broad area of color to accompany my stamp rolled images and regular images. Using these techniques, I actually can make my own background paper.
Monday, July 28, 2008
For instance: Christy, who was a referral from CTMH and a total stranger brings such laughter! (And she brought along her friend Kym, who is the queen of embellishment and inspiration!) Kevin, who was new to scrap-booking last summer, has a gift of giving (as do MANY of the others!). Robin keeps me focused on the important things and keeps me grounded. Brandy has been a great encourager. Jodi, Julie, Nan, and Barbara are so enthusiastic. Every time I get to see or talk to them, they get me geared up and excited about what I'm doing. They don't even know how motivating they are!
The thing is, while all of these ladies have become my friends and are also part of my core team of customers, I would never have met most of them had it not been for my business. And even the three that I knew, I would only barely know if not for CTMH.
So whatever your business might be, treasure the relationships you are building. This network of mostly women that I work with has become a support group, a prayer team, and a sisterhood that has enriched my life tremendously! I wouldn't have it any other way!
Have a blessed - and profitable - week!
Saturday, July 26, 2008
I can't fault her for it. I don't know of too many places where, "I tell you what" is a complete sentence and a paragraph in itself. It's hard to believe, though, that my "accent" actually bleeds over into my writing. Shame on me!
Even though I grew up in Dallas, believe it or not, I didn't have an accent until I went to college. I went to a school in East Texas, in a small country town about 60 miles east of Big D. I had a great education there. I learned that it is perfectly acceptable to look at someone that is walking past you, even in the eye, and smile and nod. I learned that waving at total strangers on the street as I drive by is neighborly. And I learned that if you yell "Baaaaaaa" at a group of goats 90% of them will raise their heads and look around.
I seriously can't fault my college education for ALL of my language quirks. Case in point is the word "what". Now the way I sometimes say it, it is more like "whut." But that was a purposeful change. Why, you ask? I was in a musical many years ago with my senior minister. I played a hick waitress and I sort of patterned her speech after the waitress named "Flo" on an old TV show called, "Alice." Now I never said, "Kiss my grits!" but I did say, "you know whut?" My senior minister really threw me the day - during performance - when he answered, "whut?" and made the whole audience split a gut. With all that practicing, that "whut" will still come out from time to time.
Another thing I can't blame on East Texas is my use of "terribly." I've never really noticed it, but my DEAR friend, Cindy, shared with me that she has noticed it a lot in my writing. That one I have to blame on another dear friend, Paula Kaye, who passed away a couple of years ago. Paula and her hubby were from England and often I would put on my best British to greet her, "Oh Paula and how ahe you, deah?" And she would answer back, "terribly well," or "frightfully well". Then she would explain again for the 10th time how "strange it is that we'll say terribly or frightfully when we're talking about something good. Isn't that silly?" I honestly didn't try to use it or even think about it, but I do say "terribly" quite a lot nowadays.
But one other item that Cindy LOVES to point out IS INDEED from my college career. That is the use of "big ole hairy". To me, this just means morosely large, but when I use it, especially for some type of food, it paints all sorts of ugly pictures in my friend's head. Aren't you glad I don't use THAT one in my writing.
Oh and by the way if something happens "like a big dog," that mean it happens in a grand manner.
That was my week this last week. I had the Midweek Makeover set up (even though I lost a part of it and NO I still haven't found it but when I do I'll let you know!) but the other parts just didn't come together this week.
I'm excited about the CTMH convention next week. Can't WAIT to see what their gonna do now! I know I'll be inspired after that! Until then, just know I'm working on it and if you have anything that you would like to do, PLEASE drop me a line. I'm just plumb out of ideas right now although I know there are thousands out there roaming around.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Monday, July 21, 2008
However, it really took me all day just to get organized for the evening. Part of it was because I had stashed some of my pictures and had trouble finding it, but part of it was because I'm not used to packing up to go to a crop. If I do a crop, I'm usually sponsoring it, so I have ALL of my stuff with me. But this one was different; I wasn't selling there so I didn't need to bring any inventory, I wasn't doing any demonstrations, so I really could just bring what I wanted to work on. Yikes! Decisions - Decisions.
But it wasn't just me. My friend had the same problem. She wasn't sure what to bring either, so I thought it might be useful to go through a brief on what to take to a crop.
It really depends on your purpose and the length of the crop and you have to decide a few things. You could use the crop to sort your pictures, make basic pictureless layouts - ready for pictures later, embellish, title, or journal your building layouts or create layouts from start to finish.
I'll make the assumption that your crop is like mine was - short (6 hours) - and I wanted to complete some layouts from start to finish. You'll need a basic kit of cutters and adhesives and once you have collected all the necessities, you can choose the other important things, starting with pictures. Don't try to scrapbook all of them, just choose 3-5 events to bring along. (Notice I didn't get so detailed as to suggest you choose all your specific pictures, yet) If you can get 5 double page layouts completed in 5 or 6 hours, you are officially in the super-scrapper league!
Then, you need to choose your paper. It is best if you choose design paper (CTMH calls it Background and Texture paper or B&T for short) that will enhance the colors and event found in your pictures.
I was working on a set of swim pictures, a set of Christmas pictures, some snow pics, and a set of field trip photos to the Dallas Arboretum. I used the "Rustic Trails" set for the swim pictures, but I substituted a design page from the "Laid Back" packet instead of using the fishing paper. The Christmas paper was easier. Some of my photos were very bright and bouncy, while others were more formal. Luckily I have 2 different Christmas packages, one retired CTMH package that is animated and bright and a current one called "Everlasting" that has traditional colors and a Victorian feel to it. For the snow pictures, I chose the berry and ocean combination in the "Just Chillin'" set. Finally, I chose the muted shades of "Lazy Days of Summer" to use with my Arboretum pictures. I felt like the colors wouldn't compete with the vivid colors of my pictures.
***Allow me a short commercial. You can collect papers from all over like I used to do. I would see this precious pattern and that one and then try to match them up. I would even wander through the scrapbooking section of my favorite craft store (Hobby Lobby) trying to find 2 or 3 design papers that really complimented each other. Have you ever been in that situation??? Then I would try to find cardstock to coordinate with the design papers that I had chosen. Blah! I LOVE paper, but that SSSSSLLLLOOOOOOWWWWW process would weary me so badly that after spending an hour searching for the perfect collection I was SICK of looking at it and put it up as soon as I got home! Well, I cast off that stressful burden when I begin using CTMH "My Reflections" Paper Packs. Each one contains 6 different design papers (B&T's) and I get 2 of each. It also contains 10 cardstocks in 4 coordinating colors and if I want, I can buy card-weight stickers (called Stickease) to match! Everything goes together in perfect harmony! I LOVE THAT!***
So in a nutshell here are the absolutes when packing:
- 12-inch paper trimmer
- adhesives - bring refills!
- scissorspictures (organized by events)
- paper (bagged with the pictures they will go with, if you can)
Without these items, you can't crop at all. Then you have the "really should have" items:
- magazines, sketchbooks, or guidebooks for ideas and instructions (I would recommend the books from CTMH: Cherish, Imagine, and Reflection).
- paper piercer
- Alphabet stampsets
- Ink pads that match your papers
- CTMH Distressing Kit or sandpaper, sponges, and brushes
Now you can crop without the list above, but having these items will help you complete your pages. Finally you have the "completely optional, but will give your pages a finished look" list:
- chipboard pieces (CTMH calls these "Dimensional Elements)
- decorative stamp sets
- brads, eyelets buttons and other accents
- fibers, ribbon, hemp
- paint, stickles, glitter, CTMH's Liquid Glass, Fun Flock, or Sculpting Foam
Also, bring tickets, programs, drawings, postcards, notes, etc. from the event you are scrap-booking.
I've shared the layouts that I actually finished this weekend, and I have a great favor to ask of you. As I said at the beginning, my experience with crops are rather limited. What do YOU do to prepare for a crop. Please comment on this post and share your ideas as well. And if you're reading this post, make sure you read the comments!
Thursday, July 17, 2008
I used our Free Spirit paper to makeover this card, but honestly, it is simplicity in itself and could be made over with any of our packs easily. In fact, the paper Tracey used looks a lot like our Best Friends Forever paper package. But I needed an inspirational card that could be used for a guy, so the Free Spirit paper was perfect. Instead of punching the flowers out of the striped paper, I used the stripes as the bottom to give it a more formal feel and used our just blooms in white daisy as the accents and vellum holders. This worked out great because I really wanted to stamp in vellum, but there just isn't any successful adhesive (that I have found) that won't show through the vellum. (Maybe CTMH will introduce one in a few weeks at their convention!!!!????) Anyway, the Outdoor Denim brads held the vellum easily.
Some things I didn't do: I didn't tear anything besides the vellum. This really isn't like me! After all, I do have 4 children! LOL! Well, my teenager is out of town right now, maybe that's why . . . naaaaah. I just wanted a more formal appearance to the entire card. For that reason I also scraped the ink around the paper edges instead of applying it in streaks. I wanted just an enhancement of the paper without the shabby chic appearance. (When using vellum, make sure the ink is fully dry before you try to put it on anything. Vellum doesn't absorb the ink like card stock does and it smears very easily!)
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
I can see it advertising travel, real estate (good foundation!) or education, and of course summer fun places.
Anyway, it inspired me to create a pool party card for my twins' birthday party coming up in a few weeks. It was simple to trace the flipflop and I guess it would work to trace any of them. The strap is about 1/2 inch in from the edge of the card, and the small piece between the "toes" is a little more than an inch from the left edge and extends 1 3/4 inch down. It is 1/4 inch wide.
For this one, I don't have the details of the party yet, so the inside is a little on the bare side. I traced the non-folded section onto cardstock so the card would have weight and strength to it. To hold the "strap" across the top of the card, I folded the little piece cut between the "toes" around the strap and anchored it with a flower and a brad. I could just as easily eliminated that little piece altogether and used a bit of a 3D Foam Square to hold the strap in place.
There are times when I find just the right stamp and just the right layout, but the placement isn't perfect. I need the stamp to be flipped to fit just right. Using the brayer, I found I can actually do that successfully.
First, ink your stamp of choice, but instead of stamping on paper, roll the impression onto a rubber brayer. Be careful not to let the brayer keep rolling. I usually put my finger on the backside of the brayer to hold it in place.
Once your image is on the brayer, you can carefully roll it onto the paper or project on which you are working. This gives a perfect flip image of your stamp.
Be careful when you're using this technique because when you roll the brayer onto the project, you'll be working blind, just like when you used to use rubber stamps! Yikes! No 2-step stamping with this project!
Monday, July 14, 2008
We all had to go through Lifesaving lessons and I'll never forget what my boss taught us. (Doubtless many of you have heard this before.) He said there are 4 levels of education:
- Being unconsciously incompetent - not knowing anything and not even realizing that you don't know it.
- Being consciously incompetent - still not knowing anything, but at least realizing how incompetent you are.
- Being consciously competent - starting to understand, but really having to think about each step along the way.
- Being unconsciously competent - knowing what you need to know and not having to think about it anymore.
Now for lifesaving this is an easy thing to define, but in life (and BUSINESS) it isn't always so obvious. That was why this weekend was such an outstanding time. I got an "aha" moment at a breakout session when I found just how much I have to learn about business. At least, now, I realize what I don't know and THAT I don't know it, so I can start learning it!
So here is the challenge for you. Spend some time talking to someone who does work in your field. It would be best if she is successful at what she does, a director perhaps. If that isn't possible, find someone highly successful in her own field and spend some chat time. Let her talk and make sure you listen!
Two things will happen. The first is that you are bound to find a little gem of information when you listen intently to everything she has to say. But this isn't all one-sided! The second benefit is hers when she verbalizes her plans or explains her processes. Each time she does it, she will either become more confident or will see ways in which she can tweak her own success. Any teacher will tell you that the best learning occurs when the student is able to explain what she has learned, and that's true no matter how old you are.
Here is a great quote I took home from this weekend.
"I would rather be looked over than over-looked!"
Friday, July 11, 2008
I finished it off with some black and silver beads, hanging in 3 loops.
Just a new way to use those great embellishments! Woohoo!
Thursday, July 10, 2008
These were really easy to make. The cards are 5 1/2 x 4 and scored at 2 1/2 and then again 1/2 inch later. The inside "pocket" is 3 1/2 inches long and 2 3/4 inches wide. I cut 3/4 square inch out of one long side, then scored that same side and the 2 short sides at 1/4 inch and again at 3/8 inch. I folded the scores and put a little adhesive on the 3 outside edges, then attached them like a pocket to the inside of the card. To decorate the card, I used the paper from the Life Delights package. I covered the entire front of the card and the folded edge with the stripe. It was a 3 x 4 rectangle. The green paper was about 2 1/4 by 2 3/4 torn rectangle with one corner folded up to reveal the backside. I used a "Just Blooms" flower as the actent on the front. I just used a hole punch for the center with a drop of Liquid Glass to give it texture. The "Blessings" stamp was from the set "Friendship Blessings" and I stamped it in Chocolate ink. That's it and I made over 40 of them in just a few hours.
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
I got it all in a thin clip board folder and a pack of business card page protectors. The first thing I did was attach the business card protectors together using jump rings through the 3-hole punches. I slipped them under the clip on the board. I decorated my folder using paper from the Life Delights package and made a matching book to go in the slot of the folder.
Finally, to make sure the book stays in the slot, I spread adhesive across the back side of a page and pressed it securely to the inside pocket of the folder slot.
I used Dimensional Element letters on the front and inked most of them with Hollyhock, Chocolate, and Lilac Mist ink. I also used a little paper to cover the "O" in Notes. I love the way that looks, but I had a little trouble with it this time. I've had an experience where I tried to put adhesive on one and instead pulled up the layers of the letter. This time, I stuck the paper down, but as I cut out the letter, the top layer came off as before. It wasn't such a big deal though as it helped me cut out the paper correctly. Then I attached it back on using Liquid Glass.
I was pleased with the results and it has caught the eyes of several convention goers! Yea!
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
We're going to keep working on the project that I started last Tuesday. Last week, we roughed up a stamped red cardstock and tore all the edges. This time, we have a cardstock of the same color, but 1 1/2 inches wider and longer. When we're done with this, it will look like a mitered frame, but to start you will need to cut the cardstock horizontal, from corner to corner. Once cut, hold the pieces together and cut it again across the other two corners.
This will make 4 symmetrical sections to your rectangle.
You'll need to have coarse sand paper for the next section. You will sand each of the sections separately. The top and the bottom should be sanded from right to left across the hypotenus (large edge) of the triangle. The two sides of the rectangle should be sanded from the base, directly across the cardstock. Be sure you don't sand from the outside corners to the center corner!
Use a white piece of cardstock that is exactly the same size as the red piece you are working on. Using your Tombow adhesive, spread a line of glue on each outside edge of the card with a cross down the middle.
Place your rectangle pieces on the white cardstock, meeting all the sides evenly.
When you are finished, and put your rectangle together, all the sanding lines should be going the same way.
Please excuse the 2 or 3 lines on the right side of this piece. It was the first piece I sanded and I accidentally sanded toward the point instead of directly across the cardstock.
The finished product is below. I used the Birthday Bash and the Card Sentiments stamp sets to complete the card.