Monday, August 30, 2010

Silhouette Cutting

This was my workshop layout for this weekend. I confess, I am REALLY partial to this page and enjoyed putting it together. This is Mari's take on the concept. Let me run it down for you. We used 2 sheets of the floral design paper from the Unforgettable set and 2 sheets of the blue print design paper from the same set. On the left page, the floral was the base. We cut 3 1/2 inches of the blue print and another 1/2 inch of it. We layered the two about 1/2 inch from the left side with the pink side showing on the 1/2 inch strip.

Also on this page, we used part of the floral design page. We cut 3 inches off of the right side of the page and then silhouette cut the branches and flowers. We laid this piece over the blue (5 x 7) mats and the pictures to create an overlay.

We used a couple of silhouetted overlays on the right hand page, too. First, starting at the cut we made before, we cut a silhouette around the flower that we cut through part of, then cut down the stem to the bottom of the page. This cut went into the bottom right corner. After that, we cut alont the large branch on the left hand side of the page and let that section create the left border for the page. Mari added a flip collection using either the CTMH Flip Flaps or clear envelopes and she attached a dated cover to the top of the stack. She added brads and stickease to complete the page including a few extra flowers.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Three Things I Like - No Four!

Mari shared this layout and it really draws in the eye. First, I like the smaller sized pictures that all match in size and shape. The line on the right hand-center is echoed on either side.

Second, I like the ovals on the left hand page. They would be perfect for a Christmas page, but accent well to the pinning theme of this layout.

Finally, I like Mari's use of her paper. The Desert Sand and the Crystal blue go great with her design paper and I like how she cut out some of the florals from the the design! I also like how something as simple as a 4-inch strip down the middel can create such a focal point.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Newsprint On Pages

In these layouts, Molly used the Sarsaparilla sets to highlight a 4th grade moment for her son. She plans to make a copy of the news article so that the paper won't yellow, but this set really complimented the picture as well as the news print.

As in some of her other layouts, she used the stickease that came with the kit as her main embellishments. The strip at the top of the page is stickease as is the title, which is raised on 3D foam tape. And do you notice the little imprinted tab on the side of the picture? That's a stickease, too! Also, the little stars at the bottom are part of the set. She used 3D foam tape again on the accent below the strip. It is hard to tell that the card below the strip is stickease, but it is. Molly punched holes in it and threaded hemp through the holes (perfect for this type of paper set!) to enhance the theme of the pages.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Sports Layout

Molly Strikes again, and this time with the retired "Rowdy" set. This was one of my favorite sets. I'm not sure if it was the color scheme that I liked so much or the crazy design of some of the papers, but it certainly lended itself to the sports genre!

The way these pages are laid out, they could be Level 1 kits! Check out the edges on the grassy paper in the first picture. Molly has a "paper tearing" tool! I have a new toy to find! It is a metal stick, like a ruler, only with deckled edges on either side. I'm not sure how it worked, even though I saw her doing it, but it sure looked easy! Also in that picture, she added some natural hemp. It is an easy, inexpensive embellishment for boys pages, tomboy pages, or country pages.

While Molly did use some of the stickease to garnish the pages, she also used other accents like these edge anchors on a vellum title piece. The letters might be rubons, but printing on vellum from a computer is also pretty and easy!

Just a side note: Notice how she dates each page. I'm always forgetting to do that and getting my pages mixed up! So simple!

The "DUDE" in the second close-up is part of the stickease for this kit, as is the tan and blue frame under it. The word is raised on 3D foam tape. I'm not sure how Molly did it, but I've done it before and actually stuck down the stickease onto cardstock and cut it out before I mounted it. I've done it before, mounting the foam directly onto the sticky side of the image, but the sticky side still stuck to the paper, wherever I didn't have foam tape. It's a little more work to cut it out, but that way the adhesive on the stickease isn't exposed. Seems like someone told me they put baby powder on the backs of stickers if they didn't want them to be sticky. I've never tried it. Not sure it would work, though. Has anyone tried anything else?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

More Travel Layouts from Molly!

These awesome layouts are from Molly, highlighting a vacation they took recently. The Moon Doggie patterns worked perfectly for this jungle trip!

Simple embellishments are on this page - just the stickease that goes with the set. I LOVE stickease! I know it will match and it is just so easy to use! It adds to the theme without being overbearing and Molly's pictures are the focal point!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Kawabunga II!

Molly shared some more pages of her family trip. This is the simplest of layouts (an 11 x 11 design sheet on top of a 12 x 12 cardstock) but Molly's details make it really pop.

This is a perfect example of Stickease, our card-weight stickers that go with each paper set. All the embellishements on this page are stickease, the stripe, the flowers, even the title!

Another detail is the variety of picture shapes. I'm believing that Molly just cropped the small pictures at the top right of this page instead of ordering a special size, but you can order large sizes and cut them down. I've order a wallet page once to get 3 smaller pictures, and I've even put 4 pictures together in my photo program and printed them out as one 4x6 to get some 2 x 3 shots for a page I wanted.

Another detail that I like about this page is HOW she cropped the pictures. She used a deckle edge on all of the pics and even used the same edge on some of her mats. I confess, it's been a WHILE since I used any trimmer besides my EURO trimmer, but I'm gonna hafta pull out all my scissors and play a little! I noticed how some of the mats are straight and some are deckled, adding to the variety. Oh and I always love the look of overlapping matted, off-set photos.

Putting it all together, it makes for a great grouping. My favorite of this layout is the section on the far right. The long white mat with all the small, identically-sized photos. It reminds me of the old photo accordions that come out of wallets in old movies!

Friday, August 20, 2010


Molly shared her layouts from a recent family vacation. They are gorgeous pics and some of her details really set the tone of the pages and perfected the theme.

On her first page, I was particularly interested in the way she used hemp to highlight some of the stickease in the center. The basic goal of a layout is to draw the eye in and this page certainly does that especially with the central artwork.

Her second page easily flows from the first one. On this page I especially like the way she off-set her photos on the lower left mat. And I LOVE the weaving artwork to set off her journaling. This is a really easy technique that makes a statement, especially for themes like this beach one or rustic rural/country ones. She used 3 12 x 1 inch strips for the vertical slats and 4 other 1-inch strips of various lengths (less than 5 inches) for the horizontal slats. It's easiest to create the weave on the paper instead of trying to make it then putting it on the paper. If it had been me making this up, I would've started by placing just a little adhesive on the vertical slats, right in the middle of them to just barely hold them in place. At that point, I would weave two slats above the adhesive, where the vertical slats are adhered to the base page, and two slats below it. Then I would stick it all down thoroughly.

Molly completed the look by attaching more hemp to the stickease and raising it on 3D foam tape. Oh, by the way, this set is called Moon Doggie and it is retiring so there is precious little of it left! If you want it, please order it from the shopping link at my website; marji.myctmh.com. You'll find it at the "My Reflections 12 x 12" link.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Heart 2 Heart - Back to School Challenge

When I saw this week's challenge, I just had to show off some of the incredible artwork that was made this weekend at my retreat. I can't take credit for it, but it perfectly fits this category!

Miranda made all of these awesome items especially to get ready for school. First, she created a decorated clipboard for the 7th grade volleyball coach. With this she used stickers and cut itemes as well as design paper cut into a variety of shapes. This is all adhered using Mod Podge, I think.

She used the Cricut to create the letters and words along with some swirlies, and on the front, simple stripes adorn the clipboard. Finally, she completed the project with a mess of ribbons at the top of the clip and lots of bling on the clip itself!

Miranda also used Stickles to decorate a couple of pairs of white sneakers. I'm gonna do this for my twins! It is just their style - but don't tell them about it!!! Anyway, Miranda has one pair for herself - so in character for you, Miranda! - and another pair for her neice! I LOVE how they turned out and can't wait to do some of my own!
But I've been doing back to school things as well! I made 21 journals for our co-op credit teachers a week ago and didn't take a picture of a single one of them! Blah! I used Daydream paper and cardstock to make 2 pockets and added a monogram square at the bottom instead of the blue jean "pocket" in the picture. I also had a bunch of brads: large, medium, one flower, and a photo clip.

I made this one a while back using sanded Outdoor Denim cardstock to immitate bluejeans. The Cranberry grosgrain ribbon goes through stamped "belt loops" on both sides of the book and it ties it together.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

More Retreating News

That brown stuff you see spread all over Maria's legs is chocolate - yes, chocolate, with little mint sprigs sticking out of it. No wonder she was smiling like crazy in the pic I posted yesterday.

Brandy's legs were covered with Milk and Honey. I had the peppermint treatment. Yes, little green sprigs grew out of my legs too, but without the chocolate. Ashley had some sort of fancy treatment, but I don't think it was a food group. Still looked odd though.

So when we all got together, we not only looked good, we felt good, and the whole car smelled good all the way back to the hotel! What a way to begin the weekend. Yes, we will do that again. In fact, I'd love to include that, for whomever might wish to join the fun, at every retreat!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Retreating News

I know this is peculiar, but a half dozen of us took a break on Friday night (Yeah, that's right, a break at a retreat - go figure!) before we even got started on the retreating. We went down to a great place in Addison, off of Beltline Road, called "Hawaiian Nail Bar" and had a great time chatting and bonding and getting SASSY NAILS!

Oh, but there was a LOT more that went on at our excursion!

We got massages in our chairs while our toes soaked in a warm pool filled with oranges, rose petals and some other type of thing that looked very botanical - but then what do I know? They offer free mixed drinks, both regular and virgin versions and Friday night, they had football on. I thought it was funny that they had on a pre-season game when the place was filled (about 30 chairs in all) with laughing, relaxing females, but then I realized that most of the staff were male. No wonder all the females around us were laughing!

I do have more on this subject, like why Maria is smiling so big - no, it wasn't somthing in her drink! You'll have to tune back in tomorrow to find out and it is well worth the visit.
As for the next retreat and those following, we're just gonna hafta make this "Bar" a regular attraction! Our visit sure started our weekend off right!

Sunday, August 15, 2010


This was as much a reunion as a retreat! We had gals coming from all over the country - Yes, I'm serious; Maria came in from San Jose! We also had Rhonda up from Victoria, Lisa in from the Hill Country and Alissa all the way from the tip of south Texas.

This was our room on Sunday morning. We had a great group of gals with us this weekend AND all our STUFF! But the hotel staff (Hilton Garden Inn in Addison) was SO GOOD to us and we had an amazing time!

Couldn't resist doing this picture! (Carmela's idea!) But it was inspired by Miranda when she poked her head out from under the table just as I clicked the picture at the top.

My next retreat is November 12-14 and many of the seats are already spoken for. We always have a great time and the price is terrifice! Contact me for fees and more information.

Thursday, August 12, 2010


I just got a box-full of CTMH products; it's like Christmas! I can't wait to use them all and as these are all brand new products, and the books are "LIVE" until September 1, I'll give you a few tasty tidbits of the goodies I got!

1st and favorite! There is a NEW Scrapbooking Program book from Jeannette Lynton. Let's just say, the designs match the name of the book perfectly ~ Magic! Just wait 'til you see it!

I have to say, this Idea Book is way up there with my all-time favorites! I LOVE every single paper set in this book and I SELDOM can say that! I plan to start up on the 2 fall sets tomorrow at my retreat, working up the Workshops on the Go so I can have them to show off. The other two sets are called Mistletoe and Magnifique and I confess, I'm saving the best for last this time!!!

This book has new Albums, tricks, embellishments, AND COLORS! Really you simply MUST see it! Contact me if you'd like to find out how you can get a book of your own! As of September 1, you can view it at my website (marji.myctmh.com). You can view the summer book there right now if you've never seen Close to My Heart before!

I'm off to retreat!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Unforgettable Layout

Don't the off-set pictures on a page draw your eye to them? And it is all about setting up the pictures! In this case, Linda Swisher silhouetted the pictures of her girls. That means she cut closely around them. I know . . . you probably already knew that, but just in case! She then matted the pics onto Ocean cardstock (or at least it looks like ocean) which seems to be matted on a slightly larger rectangle of blush, and finally matted again on more Ocean - this last piece trimmed with deckle trimmer, maybe? I like the effect! The letters were done on her Cricut with some stickease accents and the stripe on the right hand page wass also done with cardstock and stickease. GREAT PAGES! By the way, the Unforgettable sets are all retiring and are on sale at my website, marji.myctmh.com.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Emporium Layout

I love the way Emporium papers can enhance a variety of photos. I thought of them as fairly formal, but they look great with these blue jean pics! Linda Swisher shared these. She used her Cricut for the lettering, but Emporium paper and stickease to build the pages. Simple and elegant!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Way Easy, Way Fast!!!

These cute pages were made by Kim Gilmore using some Christmas base pages, which were the pre-curser to our Level 1 Kits. We carry them in all the different paper kit designs. They are so simple to use. Each one includes 4 ready-made layouts, 2 extra coordinating cardstocks, 2 extra matching design sheets, and 2 sheets of matching stickease.

Using these ready made layouts are so simple. Just crop your pictures and stick them down; it can't be easier! Kim used some retired base pages that were along the same lines, but were packaged according to color instead of a design set. They didn't include extra matching paper, cardstocks, or stickease, but were so popular that the company started making designs just like them using the different paper pack. I'm SO glad they did!

In fact, almost 6 years ago, when I started with Close to My Heart, I made up a BIG portion of my daughter's scrapbook using these base pages and the Level 1 kits. I created 112 pages in just 9 days - not 216 hours, but 9 actual calendar days when I had to grocery shop, teach my kids, do laundry, and everything else in a normal routine.

When Close to My Heart says that it makes scrapbooking faster and easier, they aren't kidding!!!

By the way, many of the Level 1 kits are on sale at my website, marji.myctmh.com. Have you checked them out?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Today starting at 10 AM, you can purchase paper packs, stickease, and Level 1 Kits at more than half off! Visit the shopping link at my website, marji.myctmh.com, to see what is on sale and make your order. It will be shipped directly to you! You don't want to miss this opportunity!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Stardust Birthday Card #4

This last card is on a 6 x 8 folded base with a 4 x 6 Starry B&T paper over the top. The matting for the right side card is 3 1/2 x 1 1/2 of the Green B&T. The bottom matting is 4 x 2 of the same paper. I edged the bottom mat in Moonstruck first. The bottom sentiment card is 3 x 1 1/2 and distressed in Topiary. I adhered it 1/4 inch from the left side of the mat and centered from top to bottom.

The side sentiment is also distressed in Topiary and measures 3 1/2 x 1 1/2. The 3 squares at the top are all 1 1/2 inches and edged in Topiary, too.
I inked up a Dimensional Element (flower) in Moonstruck and topped it with an Orange button. I added another larger Orange button with a knotted ribbon and a large Outdoor Denim button to complete the collection.
As a final embellishment, I added "Glitz" in dots to some of the sentiment cards as well as the candles and the confetti.