WOYWW 117 – font collections

Really, look at the time.  Honestly I almost didn’t bother with WOYWW today because I am a little depressed.  You see, I had a problem last week with my font collections.  I had gotten thru to something like R and sorted them all into meaningful (to me)  collections.  So if I was looking for  a picture (dingbat) that had vegetables, I could easily find it.  Wanted a font with a really unique, mechanical look?  Easy.  Some fonts to audition that were flowing and scripty?  Yep.  Had a bunch o’ them.  Well, somehow, when I closed down Fontbook it managed to lose all of my collections.  They simply were not there when I reopened it.  ARGH.

So today, what is on my workdesk is actually on my desktop – my fonts, to be sorted once again.  I imagine it will take me a few days at least.  But the silver lining is that I learned some things from using my last sorted lists that I can put in to practice this time! The left screen is the beginning of my re-sort and the right is my playing with Louise’s problem, posted earlier in the week on UKS, of fancy ordinal numbers.

And what’s the deal with the WOYWW number?  I thought last week was 116? have I entered the Twilight Zone?

Oops.  There’s the decorator again…..



Layout done and banner printables

We are back from our short break, relieved that Irene seems to have been not much more than a rainstorm over the areas of the East that family occupied at the time (which is more or less the Carolinas up to the Jersey shore) and frantically sorting out DS for Uni. I did manage to locate the camera and as I am stuck here with some decorators I figured I might as well post the finished final crop layout and the banner printables that I made to fill a gap.

Not a brilliant photo but there is too much going on to stage it nicely in my usual spot, plus the smell of paint is giving me a thumping headache. You can sort of see the little banner spots on the layout and there to the right.  I used them more decoratively but they would work for journaling spots as well.  You can grab them by clicking here to download. Pretty simple, but I wanted to try something a little different, shape-wise.

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Sunday-someplace-else (birthday poster)

Such a cool idea! Print the postcard size pieces (or have far-flung relatives and friends print just their piece) address to the birthday person and mail, for them to assemble. I think I will take the idea but customise one for DD and DS.

Not sure if I can make WP add an image, it doesn’t seem to want to from the iPad, but let’s give it a go!


Last crop layout

This one can be thought of as the companion to the one called Wirly Girly – same scene, but see how differently DS treats hugs from Grammy and Grampy?

It will always annoy me, the choice I had to make about photo placement and the title – you see, we ALWAYS say GRAMMY and GRAMPY, that way.  But I vastly prefered the photos placed as they are, to reversed, and having placed them in that order, it seemed wrong to title it the way I would say it.  But somehow, Grampy and Grammy sounds … odd to my ear.  Oh well.  The little cream words are actually those old, old, old twist ties with words printed either end, so if you twist them together they for the phrase.  I just snipped them shorter and added them like word strips.  Works for me, and I d love using up old stash in a slightly new way – better than letting it languish in my stash, don’tcha think?


WOYWW 116 – layout in progress

This is the layout I hadn’t quite finished at the crop, well on the way to being put in the album.  I will def. finish it today!  Thought I might manage it yesterday but got sidetracked by DD, as is usual. And the earthquake in Virginia, where my parents live.  Their house wasn’t close to the epicenter, and they were actually (wait for it…) on the Jersey Shore, where the family holiday house is.  Yes, yes, I know….we are of Italian descent but I assure you, no “situations” in our family.

Oh, and What’s the deal with non-stick sticky letters??  I thought it was just the HS ones, but these darn felt ones will not stay in place.  It’s doing my head in.

I have made the printable set for Nikki, still awaiting word from her.  Here’s a preview – I hope they fit her kid-friendly/bright/with lines requirements!

And now, do pop over the Julia’s Stamping Ground for a look at workdesks this Wednesday.  Perhaps you’ll find the germ of you next project on one of them!


Another layout

Layout two from the crop.  This one is perhaps my favourite of the four.

Not quite red and teal, but close.  Not sure why it’s my fave, although the photo of DS is quite cute – at 18 I don’t get him to mug for the camera quite so much as he once was willing to do.  Perhaps it is knowing he will be off to University so far away in just a few weeks, when I had just about wrapped my head around him taking a gap year, that is making me all nostalgic for the sweet little pre-teen he was.

Once, it was all about Thomas the Tank Engine.  Now, we are off to this for a few days:

How the times change.  Once, DD was all about Sesame Street and Teletubbies and now it’s popstars and make up tutorials on You Tube, although she still falls back on old favourites much more than DS does.  Funny, you spend so much time willing them to grow up, and when they finally do,  you wish for the simpler times, all cuddles and and the concept of Mom and Dad as the center of their universe, if only occasionally and temporarily.  This is one of the things I love about scrapbooking.  Somehow, taking the time to work on a layout, studying the photos, considering the journaling, it always seems to take me back.  The memories flow from the combination of photo and thoughts, and they somehow seem more real, more NOW, than some hazy recollection of the past, if only for a bit.

I got a lovely email yesterday from someone writing an article who wanted to use something of mine.  That made my day. Of course it’ll be months till that sees the light of day and who knows if my small contribution will make the final edit, but still nice to be asked.

And I have not heard back from Nikki, who got picked by the random number generator, in the comment-for-custom printables draw.  Now looking back at my comment section I can see she has commented regularly but never with her own blog link.  So Nikki, I’ve emailed you.  I hope you got it.  If not, I hope you see this.  I have a set of kid-friendly journaling spots ready for your preview! Get in touch!

Because there were few comments in that post that outlines what it was they wanted, I may simply work on the ideas posted for the practice, although perhaps not till next week.  If the comment had a blog or email, if I do something that you asked for, I’ll let you know.  As you can see I made myself a little blog badge for Hybrid scrapbooking, a la Shimelle’s proud scrapbooker badge.  Feel free to grab it if it appeals.


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Another Shimelle page

Very productive at the crop on Saturday (YAY!) and managed three completed layouts and one more 90% done which I hope to finish off today.  This is the first one, the sketch of the week challenge from Shimelle.

I got the camera printables from SJ and do love them – I coloured one of the B&W ones in orange to match the layout.  Like circles, I think you can add a camera to any page and it will feel pretty much at home, and those sorts of things are very handy to have in your scrapbooking arsenal.

I have slightly mixed feelings about it – I used a fairly bizarre colour combo, drawn from the photos, and I fear it highlights DD a bit more than DS, as she is larger in the photo, more colourfully dressed, and most of the accent colours are hers.  SI readers may recall a layout I did in there about DS and his proclivity for black tee shirts (and I should mention that he’s colour-blind, so black makes matching an easy option for him.)

I can see Shim is now going to do a Starting Point Saturday, which is fab, because I really like the idea of beginning with something basic then taking it wherever you want, without the added confusion of a sketch that may influence you more than you intended. At this point I am just happy to have the kickstart I need to keep making pages and not to get sidetracked by other things.  I find I missed scrapping, as much as I enjoy cards occasionally, and challenges, and creating tutorials and making mini-books.  I have found my scrapbook-focus again and am finally making a dent in the HUGE backlog of photos I have.  And that feels good.

Note: I’ve emailed the random winner from the few comments I had of people interested in their own printables. I’ll post more on that when I hear back from her.

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Sunday-someplace-else (Non-Dairy Diary)

I stumbled on this blog and love it. You might too.

There is an interesting story about one of her art pieces that was lifted from her blog and turned into a retail line by an unscrupulous reader, who then tried to sue HER when she tried to make and sell prints of the same illustration (HER own illustration!), a ton of cute freebies to download and print, including sweet little Advent calendar houses, and some tutorials as well, including the one I first saw for drawing adorable little birdies in a few steps.

But that really only scratches the surface.  There is so much more there you will love, from a printable set of banners including an easy way to cut them (it’s all about the original shape – check it out) to fab French fish, and an interesting look at how kids celebrate April Fool’s Day there.  I love that one in particular. There are also some nice Photoshop tutorials, and this one on making a photo with a muddy grey background pop is quite good.  I want to work thru it in either my very old full Photoshop or my brand spankin’ new PSE and see if I can do the same.

All in all it def. makes my list of “must visit regularly” blogs.


Weird little SU! post

To be honest I am deep in my stash, preparing for my crop tomorrow, setting up page kits, etc., so not really much time to devote to either Intaglio play making printables, or proper crafting, but I did want to add this weird little thing in case anyone finds it useful.  There are a few SU! stamps that I quite like, but to be honest the wooden blocks put me off.  I haven’t had a look recently, but will surely ask my mate Laura who sells SU! stuff, and who gave me the set you will see here, if they now sells stamps with cling and no blocks.  I could happen, you never know…So anyway, I was looking at the tiny little stamps and at the waste rubber that is left over after you push then out, and in one of those lightning strike moments I had an idea.  Maybe not brilliant for anyone but me, but I found it solved a couple of problems.  First, I was thinking about the stamps, and mounting them on something clear.  I really wasn’t keen on spending a ton on a huge piece of perspex to chop up into mount size pieces (and to be fair it IS a bit thin) so I thought about what else might work.  It had to be small, it had to be clear, and it had to have a bit of substance.  My eye landed on a pack of Tic Tacs on the kitchen counter.  Et viola! Perfect size, thick enough to handle and clear, and there you go!

I could add the little sticker to the one side then looking thru the Tic Tac box, line up the stamp perfectly.  The small boxes are about 2 1/4″ x about 1 1/4″ so perfect for the smallest stamps.  Any of the little ones in this set would fit, but not the big damask one, which is fine as that was already on the block when I got it.  The bigger Tic Tac boxes are still to small for that, but they measure about 2 x 3″ of usable area (I would avoid the cap part as that is not see thru, but I guess as long as you can see the rest of the stamp, a little that you can’t see thru isn’t the end of the world) so they would take larger stamps.

Ideally I would mount them on some sort of cling film, but as I didn’t have any, this worked well for me. I have a lot of older wood mounted stamps and small ones like this aren’t the issue storage-wise that huge honkin’ wood mounts are so I don’t even mind that is is on a mount, albeit a weird one.

Now, if you read this blog regularly yu may remember I am fairly challenged when it comes to cutting out with a neat border.  I can cut very nicely along a line, but to leave a uniform border all around an image, especially a decorative one. not so good. Looking at the waste rubber, it occurred to me that it makes a perfect mat bordered image.  I demo it here with the bird, but honestly even I could probably cut that simple image nicely. I’m not so sure about the damask.  I always go horribly wrong with those sorts.

So what I did was stamped the image, laid the waste rubber over it, drew within the hole left by the stamp with a pencil, then cut just inside the line.

You want to lay the rubber side down, so the image is the right way round – if you lay the adhesive side down you get the reverse (see there, upper left?)

Then once you cut you get a nice border, although not a thin one on a small image like this one. It obviously depends on the look you want.

For something like the damask this would give you a really symmetrical guide, and if you wanted it more closely trimmed you can still follow the outline, just cut further inside it.  Those who are masters of the cutting out will scoff at this but honestly it helps me so much to have that visual symmetry drawn on rather than trusting my eye.

Back to the kit making and then off to see GLEE, the movie, with DD. Have a great day!



Hybrid scrapbooking and printables

Right, so SJ made a post a couple of days ago that was so on target.  If you are a paper scrapper (or cardmaker even) read it.  She offers not only some good reasons why you shouldn’t be worried about the concept of hybrid, but some excellent advice about printing.  Obviously if you follow my blog at all (and if you do let me just say thank you!  No one like to think they are talking to themselves in an empty room LOL!) you know I think of myself as primarily a paper scrapper, but I love to add my own hybrid elements to my pages, and I happily share what I make so others can make use of them as well.  So while I commented on SJs post and agree 100% with everything she said, I do want to add my own thoughts as well.

First, a story.  When we were doing the Scrap Factor contest on UKScrappers we tried to lift a few ideas from the show, most notably the way they sometimes ask people to change categories, like combining a bunch of boys or girls into a group, rather than putting them through as solo acts.  Our take on this was to ask a few of the paper people to “change” categories, moving to Hybrid.  These were people we where we saw SOMETHING in their layouts that made us think they could adapt to Hybrid very easily.  Quite surprisingly, of the maybe 4 people we approached, two of them made comments like “Oh I couldn’t do hybrid, I don’t do digi” and implying that they saw hybrid work as closer to digi than to paper.  {see my shocked expression}

Hybrid scrapping is maybe 90% paper scrapping, certainly the way I do it.  And paper scrappers really shouldn’t shy away from it, because, and here is the big point, hybrid elements only share anything with digi UNTIL THEY ARE PRINTED.  Once you print a hybrid element it becomes a PAPER ELEMENT. And you can use it exactly like you would a printed scrapbook element that you buy then punch out or pop out, or cut.

If you look at the layout I did for Shimelle’s printable challenge, and study the close up of the elements here, printed at home, on textured cardstock, using the Archival Matte setting and best quality, I don’t think even the most die-hard paper scrapper would look at them and say they don’t look completely at home on this paper layout!

And even printed on smooth cardstock, and in this case cream rather than white, I think you will see that the version offered in the posts here and here look equally as good on the layout!

OK, so now you have printed your printables and have them in your stash (another great idea from SJ – print them and add them to your similar scrapbooking supplies so you see them and maybe will use them, rather than letting them languish in your computer files) but the genius part is that YOU STILL HAVE THEM ON YOUR COMPUTER.  Wrap your head around that for a moment.  So you can, with only the most minimal of skills, use the tools in something like PSE to change the colour by clicking ENHANCE > Adjust color > Adjust Hue/Saturation then clicking Colorize in the dialog box. Slide the HUE slider up and down and watch the colours change.  If you do this on the WHOLE SHEET, you will see all the elements in the same tone.  If you mark them using, for example, the circular marquee then hold down the shift key while drawing your marching ants around just the center circles, you can change just the coloured parts, leaving the large brown circles unaffected! On the reddish one, my marking was imperfect but the happy side-benefit of that was to create a darker line around the center circle so know you don’t have to be exact in your marking and it may actually enhance the look.

Of course, on the set with the word circles the words and the colour sort of go together, so you may want to do this play on the blank set from my WOYWW post.

But that is just scratching the surface of what you can do!  If you know how to make text in a circle you can make your own words and lay them over the blank ones.  You could do a plain colour circle with one word in it, like the ones for Shim’s challenge, in a font to match your journaling, lay that over the center then print.  So long as you are working on a duplicate of the file, you can experiment with it 1000 different ways and STILL HAVE THE ORIGINAL.  And you can save any of your custom ones, if you wanted to use them in a mini-book for example, to print exact matches over and over again. And don’t forget my colour-picker technique, to open an online image of the paper line you are using and pick the colours from that, to make your overlays.  Then you have a perfect match to your papers.  Cool, hummm?

Seriously, folks, why are you not making use of these?  There are so many printables out there for free.  What is so scary about them?  Even if you just grab the PDF, print them out, and use them as is, you will get a cute element that cost you pennies in ink and paper.  If you look at the post that helpfully tells y0u EXACTLY how they will look punched or cut with a variety of Nestabilities (and I bet the scallop punches work too, I just didn’t think to sample that at the time.  While not everyone has Nesties, more than 1/2 of you, I’ll wager my stash, have a big circle or scallop punch!) you will see that the simple shapes I tend to do are so easy to get from computer to page.

So, if you didn’t close your mind after the first mention of Printables, and made it this far, and I have successfully added my voice to SJ’s and persuaded you to give them a go, do comment on my  post with the Nestie samples (not this post) for a chance at a random draw.  Tell me what you want, and if I pull your name out of the hat, I’ll make you some printable of your choice.  I need the practice and I don’t want to make just ones I like!  {this is now closed} And click on the link to SJs post – the info she provides is, as I said, totally on target.    And if you are still not convinced, please comment and tell me WHY.  I promise not to tut at you but I will also promise to add what I can to alleviate your concerns.  Open up your scrapbooking to embrace this whole new world.  You won’t regret it.