Friday, July 18, 2014

The iPhone Photography Project


Last month I entered the 21st century and the smartphone world with my first iPhone (a pink 5c).  I am thankful to have a 16-year-old with a iPhone 4 to help me!  When Big Picture Classes announced their iPhone Photography Project 2, I decided to jump on the bandwagon.  You will probably get to see some of my work over the next month here.

I am loving having a good camera with me at all times. (Yes, I took a selfie when I got my new phone!)  I can't wait to share some of what I learn.  (Be sure to check out all of the BPC offerings, and if you decide to join, use my code 730328C8.  Thanks!  Here are a few of my favorite phone pictures:
a baby starfish on Amelia Island

My hometown square Tuesday evening
The last blossom on my lily

I am even on Instagram, but I have a lot to learn there too!

If you have any tips, I'd love to hear them. (Thank you, Joy, for the Siri help!)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Technique Blog Hop: Sneak Peek!

If you're a Close To My Heart fan, then you know that the new catalog and Idea Book will be unveiled on 8/1- only a few short weeks way!  Our technique blog hop group is whetting you appetite with a sneak peek at some of the featured techniques.  (If you're already hopping, then you've arrived from Michelle's blog and will visit Melissa Robinson next.)

My technique uses the Cricut to create "Simple Shadows." (You can find the instructions on p. 102 of the CTMH Annual Inspirations to be revealed 8/1.)  It's a super easy technique that will make your scrapbook titles POP.
First, use your Cricut to cut out your title in a light-colored card stock.  Then repeat the cut on a piece of dark card stock.  Glue them together, slightly offset, to make that title pop!  (I used my Artbooking cartridge and the May special paper pack, Free to Be Me.)
Here is the page without the shadow...

...and with the Juniper card stock piece behind the White Daisy piece (and a few Aqua Dots).  Doesn't this look better? 

Here is the left companion page:

Before you leave, I'd like to give you another quick tip.  Since I don't have any more of this paper, I cut the BFF and LOL from the middle of red pieces that you see on the page.  The White Daisy covers the holes, and I was able to stretch this awesome paper a little further!  (It is super simple to cut rectangles out of these larger pieces to use as mats, etc., but I cut a few Cricut pieces with mine.)
Whenever I uncover the pictures of my girls that I have already printed (!!!), I will add them to my layout and repost my pictures.  Thanks for stopping by!  Now be sure to continue on this cool hop to Melissa!

Monday, July 14, 2014

H2H Challenges: The Spice of Life

They say variety is the spice of life, but after 19 years of marriage, I cannot agree with that statement!  This week's Heart 2 Heart Challenge is "the spice of life," which is wide open to interpretation!  I decided to share the layout I made with photos from our 19th anniversary last week.
We decided to dine IN for our anniversary.  Hubby grilled steak while I fixed the sides.  (Can you believe that I forgot to sautee mushrooms and onions?!? LOL)  I set the table with our wedding china and gave the girls a quick etiquette/table-setting lesson.  We enjoyed our "spicy" night in!
The Ariana paper pack and the Artbooking CTMH/Cricut cartridge helped me create my layout.  This paper pack seemed like a good match with my pictures, and the heart "collage" at left was a "reject" from another project.  It fits well here, doesn't it?  I had fun cutting images and designs from the A and S keys.
The bottom of both pages uses leftover zipstrips.  I didn't want both sides to have the same sentiment, so I cut it out and piece together two identical zipstrips for the right page.  Don't be afraid to try something new.  It's only paper, and there's always more! ;)

Thanks for checking out my (not-so-) spicy layout!  Be sure to see how my Heart 2 Heart Design Team inspires you this week.  I hope you'll play along with us!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Band Thanks

As secretary of our high school band boosters, I happily volunteered to create a thank you card for the band director to give to someone.  Since our colors are purple and gold, I used Gypsy and Honey.
I stamped the bottom edge of the 5"x7" White Daisy card base with the music staff from the (retired) Universal Backgrounds stamp set.  I cut the three panels of the sentiment with my CTMH/Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge.  To make the sentiment pop, I stamped it first in Honey then stamped it again, slightly offset, with Black.  Two black sequins from the Laughing Lola Assortment finished it off while keeping it simple to mail.

Here's hoping your day is filled with sunshine and song!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Happy 19th Anniversary + Mojo Monday

Time definitely flies when you're having fun, because it is really hard for me to believe that Hubby and I are celebrating our 19th anniversary today!  Here we are 19 years ago...
 And tonight...
For his anniversary card, I used this week's Mojo Monday sketch but turned it 90 degrees.
I started with this great "You and Me" card from the Skylark Picture My Life kit that I pop-dotted onto my card front.  I grabbed my Skylark paper pack to create the rest of the 5"x7" card, but threw in the Chocolate checked piece from the Timberline paper pack so that my focal image would pop.  For the Lagoon strip, I used a paper punch for the border, and then decided to fold down the top edge to show off the stripes.  I didn't glue the flap down so it gives the card some dimension.  I embellished the card with some bronze shimmer trim, a Skylark complements bird, a Skylark Assortment flower, and several Aqua Dots.  (Everything is available HERE if you're interested.)

Thanks for stopping by and sharing our anniversary with us.  Here's to many more years of happiness together!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Up, Up, & Away!

Our new Heart 2 Heart Challenges Design Team is ready to go up, up, and away!  Are you with us?  You have all month to play along with any of our July challenges, so get your craft on.

For this challenge, I knew birds were going to be my up, up, & away inspiration.  I have been wanting to make a Base & Bling necklace for quite a while, so I got to work!  They are super easy to make: all you need are the pieces, the sticker of your choice from the base & bling collection (or you favorite patterned paper or photo), and a little Liquid Glass.
Here are two more that I made.
And the perfect card to accompany either of these necklaces:
The card uses one of the Base & Blink stickers (the feathers) and the Give a Lift stamp set for the sentiment.  I thought that Sunset card stock and a bit of Laughing Lola really matched the Base & Bling stickers.
Here I am wearing the peacock necklace.  I wrapped the chain through the pendant twice to wear it up close to my neck.  If you'd like to learn more about the Base & Bling collection, click HERE.  Thanks for stopping by!  Please leave me a comment before you take off and check out the fabulous H2H inspiration.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Jubilee Banner

My younger daughter and I made a cute banner to help celebrate the Fourth of July weekend.  We (mostly she!) cut 5"x8" and 4"x7" rectangles from the Jubilee paper pack to create pennants.
We folded over a 1" flap on each rectangle (to make them 5"x7" and 4"x6") and trimmed off a triangle to make the pennant shape.
We glued scraps to the pennants to make them a little more festive, then glued the flaps over a long string of yarn.
We hung the banner on our "playhouse" for the long weekend.  Fun, fun, fun!
Happy birthday, America!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

H2H Challenges: Scrapbooking Red & White Daisy

Today is not only the first of July but it is also the first day of our new Design Team at Heart 2 Heart Challenges!  These amazing ladies haven't even been introduced yet and they're already crafting up a storm!  Our monthly scrapbook challenge is posted on the first, and July's is Red and White Daisy with the option of Blue.  At first I struggled with what to make, but then I remember that I needed a title page layout for my Cranberry "friends" album.  Voila!
Everything that you see on this layout was cut with the CTMH/Cricut Artbooking cartridge (on p. 78 & p. 79).  I remembered the BFF circle, so I found it and loved all the elements to make this page.  This is actually the right side layout featured on p. 79, but I did add the "friends forever" brackets from p. 78.  The Artbooking cartridge is so easy to use!  I decided on my color palette of Cranberry, Sky, and Whisper with a pop of Black and then cut away.
First I cut the two photo mats from Sky card stock.  (Do you see my two little arrow accents from the negatives?)  I added the Friends Forever brackets (cut from Whisper card stock), some Slate washi tape, and a Slate twist tie.
I used two of the stamp sets from the Artbooking collection to for all the stamped pieces.  I decided to use red shimmer trim behind the Whisper arrow border to make those arrows pop.  I added several red glitter gems to finish off the layout.
This corner also shows my faux stitching with a Sky marker.

Now to find a pair of friend pictures to finish this layout!  That shouldn't be too challenge.

BTW, I have been working on getting all my finished layouts into albums and here is my progress so far:
(Before: piles of layouts in the floor)
(Before: albums on the shelf)
NOW: the layouts on the floor still need to be sorted, but look how full that bookshelf is getting!
Be sure to visit the H2H blog for Red & White Daisy scrapbooking inspiration!  We hope you'll join us this month.

Monday, June 30, 2014

July Stamp of the Month Blog Hop: Circus Alphabet

The July CTMH stamp of the month is the adorable Circus Alphabet!  Please check out all the fabulous inspiration you'll find here on our monthly stamp of the month blog hop.  If you're already hopping then you've arrived from my Heart 2 Heart Challenge's "partner in crime," Katy Taylor's blog.  You will visit the fabulous Fancy Melissa next.
I had my heart set on making a "sampler" type of card, and here are two versions that I made.  Both use the Skylark paper pack.  The top one is a standard-size card, but the bottom one is 5"x7".  With the larger card, I wanted to show how you could add a color to your paper pack to stretch it further.  In this case, I used Sorbet.  (Smoothie & Cotton Candy look great too!)
Now here's a quick photo tutorial so that you can easily copy this idea.
1.  Lay out your stamps on your desk pad until you get the look you want.  The stamps will lightly stick to the paper, and the grid lines will help you get them straight.
2.  Lay your block on top of the stamps and push a little.  The stamps should naturally stick to the block and come up easily off the paper.
3.  Ink up your sampler and stamp it on scrap paper.
4.  Remove the I, O, & U from the large block.
5.  Place the (cleaned and dried) I & U on top of their stamped images.
6.  Pick them up with a block.
7.  Now you have two different blocks, one as your sampler base and the other to stamp the I & U in a contrasting color.
8.  Cut a 3/4" or 1" Cricut heart to cover the empty O.  (Due to the style of this alphabet, I cut a smaller white heart to mimic the open style of this alphabet.)  Adhere the heart.

Here's a Sweet 16 card that I made for my daughter using the Circus Alphabet...
...and a bracket frame for our library/office loft.
There will be more creations to come this month, so please stop back by!

If you get lost along the way or find a missing/broken link, come back here to click on this blog badge to be taken to the complete list of hoppers.
Complete Hop List HERE
Thanks for hopping by.  Check out the rest of the circus by going to see what the wickedly talented Fancy Melissa has created!

H2H Challenges Thanks & Outlander Crosspost

Okay, that is a super crazy title, but you'll see how all of this ties together!  Today on the Heart 2 Heart Challenge blog, we are saying good-bye to three of our team members.  While I hate to see them go, that also means that we will have some fresh faces and new inspiration for you over there, so be sure to check it out.  If you're an H2H fan, but sure to hop over there to tell our retirees farewell.
This card was actually made for a friend to thank her for selling me her extra copy of the new release of my (current) favorite book series, Outlander: Written in My Own Heart's Blood by Diana Gabaldon.  (You can read more about this book and the series at Amazon and at Shelfari.  The first book is being made into a television series on Starz to premier in August.  I can't wait!)  This card hopefully looks a bit Scottish to you (with the plaid, right?), because the hero of the series is Scottish and several of the first books are set in Scotland.  (I don't want to give away too much!)

Today I am also thankful for returning home safely from a great beach getaway prior to my cousin's wedding Saturday.  We had such a great time!  I'd love to know what you're especially thankful for today.  Leave me a comment, okay?

Saturday, June 28, 2014

On This Day Wedding Card

My cousin is getting married today, and we are excited to be with them as they begin their journey as husband and wife!
 This card uses the Ariana paper pack and some extra White Daisy card stock.  I knew that I wanted a 5"x7" card, and I thought that this dark Ariana gray was very handsome.  I currently don't have any wedding stamps, so I started looking through my CTMH/Cricut Artbooking cartridge.  I found several cuts that I thought put together would make a great wedding card!  All four of them come from different pages.  I just remember to use my real dial size button to scale them to the size that I wanted.  To dress up the card, I added a piece of Silver shimmer trim, the last of my gorgeous slate polka dot ribbon, a slate twist tie, sparkles, and a sparkle flourish.
The together banner that I cut was too busy for the card front, so I stuck it on the inside.  I also added a White Daisy panel so that I will be able to write our well wishes inside.  A piece of zip strip and a little more shimmer trim really finishes off the card nicely.  Can you believe that I didn't use any ink anywhere on this card?  Crazy, I know!

Best wishes to the new Mr. & Mrs.!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Kaboom Starburst Card

Starburst cards and projects have been the rage for a while now, and I think it is the perfect design for the June stamp of the month, Kaboom!
This design is a fabulous way to use up scraps.  All you need are rectangles that you cut on the diagonal.  You can keep your rays together (touching and/or overlapping each other) or you can space them out a bit like I did here to show off the background color.

All of my papers are from the Jubilee paper pack.  The sentiment was cut with the CTMH/Cricut Art Philosphy cartridge.

You're the bomb for stopping by and leaving me a little loving!  If you haven't gotten this set yet, remember that it's only around until the end of the month.  Hurry before it's gone!

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