Focus On Finishing Your Page with Overlays

How far have you been come with your New Year’s resolutions? If you made it to today, you pretty much left the danger zone. The first 21 days of the new year will show if we will make it or break it. I set a resolution, that I will try something new in my creative realm at least once a week. If this wasn’t your resolution, don’t worry. I hope after you read this tutorial you WANT to try something new.

You wouldn’t believe how detailed I can become when it comes to finishing my page. I can spend up to a quarter of my scrapping time with finishing details AFTER I completed my page embellishing. I often tweak my shadows until there is nothing but custom shadows left on my page items. I can show you how I do this in my next tutorial. Today I will narrate a bit about my other obsession: Overlays on the whole page. They come in various colors and benefits. I will show you how I use color and gradient overlays, blended textures and photo actions for my page finish. This usually doesn’t take me that long. It can be pretty fast once you know how to do it.

Color Overlays

Color overlays can create a special mood on your page like vintage, fresh, clear, girly, dreamy… whatever you think fits. It can also help in gaining color consistency, especially when you draw elements from different kits with different tones or shades.

In short how you do it: Go to the top of your layers panel, 1. click on the adjustment layer icon and on 2. Solid Color. The color picker dialog opens and you 3. chose a hue and your 4. tone or shade (more to that later). Then 5. set your blending mode to overlay or soft light, opacity 8-15%. You can always play with blend modes or opacity, hue, saturation and brightness to your liking. 6. You can always change your color by double clicking on the layer color.


Follow the steps for applying a color overlay

Depending on the color you chose, you will get different effects. For a vintage effect, use an orange hue. Sometimes a deep purple will work like that as well. For freshness, use the hue spectrum from green to blue. If you want it hazy, use the screen or lighten blend mode. Of course you can always take the effect away from parts of the page when you mask it out. 7. Use a soft brush on the layer mask 8. with 20-30% opacity and turn the foreground color to black before you 9. partially hide the layer by brushing into the layermask. With all overlays I usually go very subtle. Someone looking at the layout will most likely not notice the overlay although the mood that is created is noticeable.

Gradient Overlays

The effects of gradient overlays are pretty similar to the color overlays. You can create a little more movement on your page when you use them like a color overlay. I usually apply them to make the page seem more like a real paper page. What you do here is to make the parts of your page that are close to the virtual light brighter and the other parts darker.

1. Create a new layer on top and 2. choose white as your foreground color. 3. Click on the gradient tool in your toolbox. It’s housed with the paint bucket tool. 4. Choose the first gradient in the list and use the 5. linear gradient with 6. Dither and Transparency checked. Before you drag the gradient out, be sure to know where the shadow on your page falls. This is the side where the page has to get darker. 7. Drag your gradient line from the virtual light source of the page to the side where the shadow falls. 8. Set the blend mode to Soft Light and opacity to about 30%. You can always change the gradient later by using the gradient tool again. Play around with the gradient and the blend mode settings.


Follow the steps for applying a gradient overlay

Here you see the difference it makes. I used two color overlays, both masked off for a gradient effect without using the gradient tool. Plus the black and white gradient overlay. The page feel is sunnier and has a little more dynamic with the lighter/darker effect of the gradient.


Left without overlays, right color and gradient overlays.


If you really want to play around and try something a little weird, use textures. You can get free textures everywhere on the internet. Of course you can also buy them. Just google „photo textures“. Your digital scrap stash might be handy as a texture provider as well. Pretty patterns or worn paper textures may work. Or you create some textures by yourself. Use your camera and try it out!

I will show you how I used two photos I shot myself on the following layout.


Layout without added texture

One with roses, one with something I shot when I got bored at a party. I just photographed the windows of the house across at night. For blending a texture in, the photo doesn’t have to be perfect in any way. You can get creative here!


The textures I will use for the example.

I layered the bokeh shot on the layout with blend mode Color Dodge at 40% opacity. The difference is very subtle. It’s just a little added dreaminess. It’s most visible on the large blue flower.


Layout with added bokeh texture

The roses were a little trickier. I used blend mode Hard Light at 12% Opacity plus an adjustment layer Hue/Saturation, colorize checked with an orange hue and lot of lightness. You don’t have to remember these settings! Play around with the settings on your page until you get something you like. Use what comes to your mind to get the look you want.

You can mask out the texture partly. Pick a color of the overlay (at Normal blend mode 100% Opacity), that will blend like a neutral to your overlay photo (you have to try before) and paint it in to the parts where you want no texture. If your brush won’t paint on your picture, you have to rasterize it first (right mouseclick on the picture layer → rasterize layer). You see how my layer icon of the roses look when I painted a blend-neutral color in. On my page you can see how the roses blend in on the edges of the cluster but leave the cluster itself like it was before because of the green I painted in. Textures can be used widely and wildly, especially on art journaling pages.


Layout with bokeh and roses texture

Photo Actions

Photo actions are also available on the internet. You can buy them but there are lots of free samples out there as well. With an action you can get special effects and bring in a mood with one click. This is like a color overlay, only much more elaborate and with more features available. The action does it all for you. I bought several action sets that I really love and use them frequently in my photography. With some of the actions you can also enhance your finished layout. Usually it’s better to save and flatten your image to a jpg first. There’s a whole science to getting your actions installed, just google „install actions on *insert software version* *insert system*“ (for me it’s ps cs6 windows) and you will get the help you need. Be sure to check whether the action is suitable for your software and system.

Every action set works differently, only the start is usually the same. 1. Go to your actions palette (also via Window → Actions) and 2. click on the action you want and the 3. play button. Let the action be played. Sometimes prompts come up. Just follow them. You will see a new group or several layers in your layers panel when it’s finished. 4. You can now play with the layers until you get the result you like.


Follow the steps to start an action

I tend to use any vintage, matte or hazy action. Sometimes even sunbursts are available. I use them, too. To not overwhelm the page, I take the action layers back a lot. I want it subtle. You may have noticed that I locked the layers of my overlays in this screenshot. I often do that when I want to change something on the layout after I applied my overlays. This way I can access the layers beneath with auto select.

Here I share with you one last example of before and after. First one without an action, the right one with an action that has some features in it like enhancing saturation and contrast and adding a vignette with a brown hue.


Layout before and after using an action

I hope your brain is burning by now and it’s not only because it was a lot to cover here, but you feel inclined to try any of these suggestions. You would make me and other readers so happy when you show us your layouts with overlays. What comes easy for you, what makes you crazy, I take it all 😀 Link us up to your layouts! If any questions occur, feel free to ask in the comments section, too.

Other than that, have a great day!

About the Author: Alina enjoys sitting in front of her large computer screens too much. Apart from that she loves walking her dog and watching sunsets while being amazed of life in general. She is married to her best friend. Tries to manage the needs of her two cats and her dog and badly fails when they all want their cuddle time at once. Everything else is scrapping, taking photos and currently crafting. Having said that, she needs a bigger craft room.

Jazz Up Your Journaling

If you are anything like me, you probably spend forever picking out just the right patterned papers and moving elements around until they are in the perfect spot. I can spend several hours staring at a layout until everything looks just right. Once every element, photo and paper has been positioned, I start to think about my journaling and how I am going to work my text box into my layout. I’m so often guilty of just drawing a simple text box, typing in my journaling and calling it done. But not today! I want to focus on a few ways to jazz up your journaling blocks.

jazz up your journaling

One idea for making your journaling stand out is to use brushes to highlight key words or phrases in your journaling. In my layout below, I used brushes to make certain parts of my writing stand out. It draws your eye to those more important words and gives a little pizzazz to that area of my layout. Brushes are great for this because you can pick the colors from the kit you are working with and can make them any size to suit your journaling.

Jazz Up Your Journaling - Butter Monster

Another idea for bringing interest to your writing is to change up the font, color, or size of some of your text. In this next layout, I used a different font to give attention to more important parts of my journaling.

Jazz Up Your Journaling - Little Family

Word strips are another fun way to really make your journaling sing. I love this layout by Kat and how she used the word art from the kit to tell her story. I think it is so clever that she was able to work all of those word strips into her own journaling.

Jazz Up Your Journaling - Sleep Tight

If you don’t want to work the existing word art from the kit into you journaling or if there aren’t any that fit with your story, you can make your own. You can use a product like Dawn by Design’s Line by Line Templates to create your own word strips to add emphasis to your story. You could simply use one strip, like in the layout below, or you could do all of your journaling on word strips. I love how the strips break up the text so that it isn’t in one big block.

So, now it’s your turn to give it a shot. I would love to see what you can do to jazz up your journaling. I’m hosting a challenge over on the forums at The Digital Press and I hope you will come play along!  Check it out at The Drawing Board: Challenges.



KatieAbout the Author: Katie is a member of the Creative Team here at The Digital Press. She lives in Central Florida with her husband and their four sweet but crazy boys. When she’s not dodging Nerf bullets or trying to dig out from under the never ending pile of laundry, she enjoys photography, cooking, going to Disney World with her family, and, of course, digital scrapbooking.

Pocket Scrapping and how I Challenged Myself to Complete One Month in a Day.

When it comes to pocket scrapbooking. I’m an embellisher. I can spend more time looking for that perfect addition to my page than I spend on any other part of the pocket scrapbooking process. It’s probably partially due to this reason that I’m not anywhere close to caught up. I began pocket scrapping in 2012. I am now the proud owner of partially unfinished 2012, 2013 and 2014 albums. And that’s ok. I don’t mind being “behind” because I’m still working toward documenting those memories and to me that’s the important part.

But then something happens and I ask myself…can I do an entire months worth of pocket scrapping in 24 hours? And so I gave it a go. I should go on to explain this was a normal everyday day. My husband went to work, I homeschooled (DD is a teenager so I realize that makes it easier), did some household chores (maybe a little less than normal), and prepared meals. I took phone calls, checked emails, and got lost on facebook more than once.

But I also focused on completing this project.

may 2014 blog header















May 2014 has been looming large. For some reason I’ve been scared to tackle it. It was a busy month, with lots of stuff going on but I didn’t have good notes. I decided that this was the month to take on. So finally I loaded up facebook, looked at my status reports from that month and cut and paste the ones that I want to document into a text file. I then quickly went through my photos for the month, jotting down notes on which ones I would use and just trying to get an idea of the types of product I would need.

Then I decided on the product. I went with a selection of items from the January Special Edition releases. The bright colors were perfect for this spring month and I knew there would be more than enough coordinating products to complete an entire month’s pages. I also decided that I wouldn’t embellish my pages with anything other than what I could print from the Special Edition products and a simple office date stamp. My next decision was that I was going to use just the Project Life Design A page protectors. I love variety and typically use different configurations, but this is my favorite and I knew it would take the guess work out of figuring out what journal cards to use where. Since I normally I create one page at a
time looking at an entire month (6 pages in this case) was a bit daunting so I decided to work on it in batches.

At 11:00 am or so my (imaginary) timer begins. My first step was to go through my notes and photos and plan out where I wanted each story and picture to be. This gave me an idea of what I was working with topic wise before I started printing out my journal cards and embellishments. I used 4×6 index cards and crudely sketched out a diagram for each page. I loved using index cards for this purpose because I could use the blank space below my sketch for notes as I worked on each page.

index cards

Now that I had an idea of what photos would go in which size spots I began editing and printing my photos. There were a lot of photos and I had to break this step up into a couple of sessions. This break was a perfect time to have lunch, get some laundry going and start my daughter on her afternoon assignments.

Next I began printing the cards for my pockets. I had a pretty good idea of how many I would need for each size so I kept tally marks as I went, to keep from printing more than I needed. Then I used my Silhouette to print and cut embellishments that I thought I might use. I printed off two pages worth of embellishments knowing that I probably wouldn’t use all of them but also knowing that I could set the unused pieces aside for another page down the line.

By this point my husband was home from work and wanted me to watch some TV with him. Instead of forgoing spending this time with him I set up the TV tray in the living room and set about cutting out all of my photos and journal cards. I typically like doing something while watching TV anyway so this worked out great. It took me about three epsisodes of the sitcom we were watching to get everything cut out and then it was time to prepare dinner.

tv tray

After dinner I sorted through all of the photos and journal cards and placed the ones I thought I wanted to use together with each page’s index card. I continued working on this project while we watched a few more episodes and I was able to get the photos and embellishments adhered to the journal cards before my husband and daughter went to bed.

I typically stay up for a few hours after they go to bed so this was the perfect time for me to tackle the journaling. I was surprised that it only took me an little over an hour to get most of the journaling knocked out. For my last step of the evening I went through all of the cards I’d put together and made a list of any titles I wanted to print and cut out of the alphabets I’d chosen to use. I grabbed up the stack of cards so that I could make sure I’d get the sizing right and print and cut the titles. At this point I was done and decided to call it a night.


Come morning, the only things I had left to do was adhere my titles, journal on a few of the cards that I was waiting on the titles for and print a photo that somehow I’d missed when I did my initial editing session. I was feeling good. Surely I could get this done by 11 am. Of course, life happens. I’d promised my daughter the day before that I’d make her something for breakfast that was not cereal, homeschool math was a little harder this morning, and I spent 20 minutes searching for my 2 way glue pen that I’d misplaced. Still I was able to get through this and slide my last card into the last pocket at about 12:30. Could I do it in 24 hours? No, but I could do it in 25.5 hours and to me that was just as good.

Here is a look at the pages that I created.

Page 1

May 2014 Page 1
Page 2

May 2014 Page 2

Using collages is a quick and easy way to get more photos into a small space.

May 2014 Page 2 close

Page 3

May 2014 Page 3

I decided not to add much embellishment wise to the 3″x4″ photos on this page. I’d already talked about going to the zoo on this page and so I let the photos speak for themsleves.

May 2014 Page 3 close

Page 4

May 2014 Page 4

I created cards from some of the solid papers by placing paint and stamps on them. These are perfect for matting these photos that aren’t quite 3″x4″.

May 2014 Page 4 close

Page 5

May 2014 Page 5

I love using patterned papers for backgrounds as well. I desperately wanted to use the You are so Darling journal card with this photo, but I couldn’t make the photo size work with the card the way it originally was. Rather than taking the time to reprint the photo at a smaller size, I cut up the journal card, placed it on patterned paper and used it as a journal spot.

May 2014 Page 5 close

Page 6

May 2014 Page 6

One of my favorite things to use as journal cards is notebook paper. I used Danielle Engebretson’s Graph and Crafts papers for all four 4″x6″ pockets on this final page.

May 2014 Page 6 close

While I don’t think I’ll embrace this as a new way to tackle my pocket scrapping backlog, it was nice finding that I could accomplish all this in a little over a day’s time. I know for my next project I’ll be back to digging through my paper clips and wood veneer looking for that perfect piece to embellish my page, but for me this was an awesome challenge, and in the end I love the pages that I created.


sarah 150x150Sarah is a member of the Hybrid Creative Team at The Digital Press. She is a homeschool mom currently living in rural Missouri. Her passions are tabletop gaming and, of course, hybrid scrapbooking.

3 ways to capture life’s details like a pro

3 ways to capture life's details like a pro

As a wedding photographer, you quickly learn the value and meaning that small details can have. Weddings are full of details that a couple and their families put a lot of themselves into: items that represent their love for each other and the way they live their lives. Capturing those items – from the invitations, to the flowers, to the rings – is an essential part of capturing what it feels like to be there on the day. In other words, some of those details are an intrinsic part of the memories that are created, and the memories that I as the photographer hope will be evoked one day when people look at the photos.

Some of my favourite detail photos, in addition to being part of the day, have a story to tell all on their own, like the bride who spent hours knitting her own flowers with her friends, or the groom who was so inspired by Boardwalk Empire that his shoes got almost as much attention on the day as his bride’s!

3 ways to capture life's details like a pro

Obviously, a wedding is a planned event, and a significant one. In our everyday lives, we’re less likely to encounter cute calligraphy and artfully arranged roses. But that’s not to say that there aren’t beautiful details to be captured that can enhance your storytelling and add another layer to what you scrapbook. Here are my top three tips on how to take some inspiration from the pro photographers and capture the details to enrich your memory-keeping, along with some favorite photo examples of how I’ve applied my wedding shooting style to my personal photos:

  1. Don’t go straight to the portrait
    It’s easy enough to do, especially when we’re standing behind the camera looking at friends and family. Part of us can’t help but want to see smiling faces: we want the ‘cheese!’ moment. But before you ask your kids or BFFs to pose nicely and grin for the camera, think about how you could capture a thing in the photo, not just the people.A classic example is a kid who’s drawing you the most gorgeous (obviously) picture. It might be tempting to ask them to hold it up and smile, but first try to take a moment and document their grip on the pen, the way they stick their tongue out when they concentrate, or the picture from above as they are drawing it.3 ways to capture life's details like a pro
  2. Fill the frame
    To really place the focus on the detail, set up your shot so that you get a whole photo of one thing. Play around with your aperture or try out macro mode to experiment with depth and field too, so that your image has one area of focus that really stands out against your background. Don’t be afraid to style a little – often a small collection of things is incredibly visually effective.3 ways to capture life's details like a pro
  3. Capture the ‘where’
    I think most of us are pretty good at capturing and documenting who was there and what we did. Detail photos can enrich this story by showing you more about where you were. Capture what the light was like, the way you’d like to remember the colors, or any little features about the background or surroundings (think texture, style, design). Some great ideas include:

    • trees or flowers
    • the texture of a wall or door
    • a design feature of the building or room you were in
    • a non-traditional ‘scenic’ view (such as a normal street) that captures the feel of the city or town.

    3 ways to capture life's details like a pro

Struggling to imagine how this translates to your scrapbook pages? Here’s a recent layout example I prepared to illustrate how I use detail shots alongside more traditional portraits on a page. This type of photo also lends itself perfectly to pocket-style scrapbooking and 365/52 projects, because you may already be capturing little details like meals, new purchases, or favorite things.

Layout: Into The Woods by Kathryn Wilson
Using Woodland Winter Collection by Studio Flergs available 01/16 at The Digital Press

3 ways to capture life's details like a pro


So there you have it! For this January, we’re setting ourselves challenges that are all about focus over in the forum. Hopefully we’ve inspired you to focus on the details in your photos and memory-keeping, so we hope you’ll join in on our details challenge, which starts January 16.


KathrynAbout the author: Kathryn Wilson shares her 1920s New Zealand home with her husband, a wauzer, and a cavoodle. She is a photographer, and both a digital and hybrid pocket scrapbooker, who has lots of DIY projects she should probably be working on right now.

Grab that DSLR out of the closet and focus on your subject

Focus on your subject

The holidays are over, our schedules are a little less strenuous, and for many of us, it’s cold outside. It’s also a new year with new goals and new projects. That means it’s time to drag out that DSLR and work on our photography skills. Yep, even professionals strive to learn new things and brush up on basic skills, or even push new limits to our creativity. The subject of focus could take up the whole month of tutorials and challenges, but I’m going to keep it simple and add some links for more in-depth study.

Nail your focus

One of the first rules of photography is that the subject should be sharp. Most modern digital cameras offer a number of ways of achieving sharp images. Portrait photography often means using a wide aperture and longer focal lengths to create a shallow depth of field, throwing the background out of focus. This makes focusing more challenging than usual, as sharpness is captured across a very narrow plane, often of just an inch or two. Some basic tips include using a narrow aperture, using a faster shutter speed, and image stabilization with a tripod and a timer or shutter release to avoid camera shake.

Tips for Sharp photos

Getting Sharper images

Some more advanced tips are below:

  1. Focal points

Some photographers like to focus using the center focus point and then recompose, while others will set an off-center focus point. The important part is to choose just one focal point at a time. Most DSLRs are set to use all focal points at once and choose what to focus on. The camera is likely going to choose to focus on an area of highest contrast. Setting the AF point yourself gives you the maximum level of control over where your camera focuses, and it’s a good option for landscape, still life and portrait photography when you don’t have moving subjects. This way, you’ll prevent your camera from hunting around for what to focus on, or focusing where you don’t want it to.

For more information about focal points, check out these links:

Getting to know your camera’s focal points

Know your focusing system

  1. Where to focus

The eyes are the most vital element of a portrait, so it’s essential to record them sharply, particularly if you’re using a wide aperture. As I mentioned earlier, cameras like to focus on areas of high contrast. The best place to point your camera is at the edge between the iris and sclera of the subject’s eye. This is the area of highest contrast. Aiming at the corner of the eye is also used.

  1. Back button focus

Most DSLRs are set up so that half-pressing the shutter triggers the autofocus. Why entrust both focusing and shutter release to the same button, when a button for each can potentially give you greater control?  Many photographers prefer a custom function that triggers autofocus with a rear button positioned where your thumb usually rests  (see your camera manual to see how to set it up). It takes a little time to get used to it, but can give you greater control when focusing and composing your shot.

In addition to your camera’s manual, here are some links for more information about BBF:

Back button focusing

Focus accurately

Here is my example for a photo in which I nailed the focus on the eyes.  My daughter loves to take baths and play in the bubbles with her rubber ducky.

Grab that DSLR out of the closet and focus


Selective focus

One of the first steps toward taking more creative photos is learning how to control how much of your picture is in focus.

  1. What is Selective Focus?

Selective focus is when you focus on the specific part of a subject you want to highlight or emphasize, and let the rest fall into the blur of the background (or the foreground — you can be as creative as you like with selective focus). Selective focus is often used to draw attention to a subject or part of a subject to make it stand out in a busy settion. Other times, it’s used to evoke an emotion when viewing the subject in context of its blurred but recognizable surroundings.

  1. Bokeh

Bokeh is a word used a lot by photographers, but what the heck is it? In photography, bokeh is “the aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens” or to put it bluntly, it’s the blur of the background

  1. Achieving selective focus

Larger apertures, f-stops like f/1.2 – f/2.8, let in more light, while smaller apertures like f/16 – f/22 let in less light.

The choice of aperture has much more impact on the look and feel of an image than brightness alone. Although small apertures let in less light, they offer a wider depth of field. Landscape and macro photographers routinely use small apertures to get more of the picture to appear as sharp, where as, portrait photographers tend to shoot at much wider apertures. Large apertures produce a narrower depth of field, producing a sharp subject between a blurred foreground and background. The closer you are to the foreground, and the more distance there is between the subject and the background, the more pronounced the effect.

In selective focus photography, the parts in focus and out of focus are equally important, but nothing about the technique is particularly difficult.

Here are some tips to remember:

  • Use a Large Aperture- Depending on your lens, your largest aperture may be 2.8 or even 3.5.
  • Choose a Longer Focal Length – If your lens won’t open wider than 3.5, use your longest lens or a zoom lens extended to the far end of its range. Longer focal lengths create a compression effect that throws the background out of focus.
  • Identify Useful Out of Focus Areas – The out of focus areas of your photo should be recognizable, not just blurry blobs in the frame, so think about your goal.
  • Pay attention to the Angle – The goal is to use an angle that causes the surrounding defocused elements to be farther away from the main subject, especially when you are limited by space.
  • Keep Composition in Mind – Put the subject in such a place that allows the viewer’s eye to wander off and still be able to enjoy the rest of the image.

Find more information and helpful tools about Depth of Field here:

F-stop chart

Selective focus

DOF master

DOF calculator

DOF tutorial

Here is my example photo where the rubber ducky is in focus, but my daughter is not.  Notice that you can still identify her in the background, but the focus is on her playing with the rubber ducky.

Grab that DSLR out of the closet and focus

January 14 challenge

The challenge is to make a LO that highlights a photo (making the photo take up 50% or more of the page) with either SHARP focus or selective focus/great bokeh. To complete this challenge, please complete a page and post it in a reply to this post.

Now, for the rules…

  1. Pages must be created using 100% TDP Products and loaded in the gallery no later than midnight EST on January 31, 2015.
  2. Please link your gallery listing in this thread: The Drawing Board: Challenges– JAN 14
  3. Link your comment in this thread in the monthly challenge tracker thread. You can find it here: January’s Tracking Thread
  4. Have fun!!!



FarrahAbout the Author:  Farrah Jobling is a member of the Creative Team here at The Digital Press.  She lives in Denver with her amazing family, Mike, Nicholas (8), Claire (5) and Hope (7 mo puppy).  She works from home as a photographer and enjoys scrapping her personal photos.

Getting started with Digital Pocket Scrapbooking

Pocket scrapbooking is hugely popular at the moment, and especially at this time of the year when we’re all excited about recording our year. We’ve all seen beautiful page protectors filled with gorgeous physical and hybrid goodies, but for some of us the thought of getting all covered in glue and glitter or having to spread out all over the kitchen table (and clear it up for every meal!) doesn’t appeal.

Digital pocket pages are a great option and have some advantages over the physical version. For me, the best thing about digital pocket scrapbooking is the space that I’ll save. I print my pages in a photobook at the end of the year, so rather than a large album or two, I have a slim volume which sits nicely on my shelf. Of course, if you prefer to print throughout the year and put the pages in page protectors you can absolutely do that too. I don’t need to print my photos in advance so much, simply drag my photos into Photoshop Elements (or the image editor of your choice…) and get started. And of course I don’t glue my fingers together.

The easiest way to start is with a pocket scrapbooking template. I’m using the Project Twenty-Fifteen templates by Laura Passage.

When the PSD file is opened in Photoshop Elements it looks something like this (I’m using PSE 9) but it shouldn’t be different in other versions.


Each rectangle is a shape on its own layer. I’m going to be replacing them with my photos and cards from Krafty Basics by Mari Koegelenberg. I’m also using a card from 2015 Calendar Journal cards by Scotty Girl.

Let’s start with a card. When I open the card file, it appears in the project bin at the bottom of the screen. Click on the rectangle that you want to use so that we’re working on the right layer, then drag the card onto the template. The card will be on the layer above the rectangle. Move the card to where it needs to be, then click ctrl-G (cmd-G on Mac). This applies a clipping mask so that the card is now the exact shape of the rectangle below. You can see where you have a clipping mask applied as the layer appears indented in the layers list on the right.


I do exactly the same thing with my photos and any other cards or papers I want to use. The size of the photo layer can be changed by dragging one of the corners until it’s the size you want. It’s best not to increase the size though, as that affects the print quality.

We are scrapbooking here, so I’ll need to add some journalling. I use the text tool to draw out a rectangle to type into, either on a card or right on top of a photo.


I could be done at that point, but sometimes it’s nice to add a few embellishments. I’ve just used a couple of tiny flowers from Mari’s collection. Laura’s template comes with shadows included, but if I add extras, I’ll need to add them. Right click on one of the shadowed cards in the layers panel (the layer name has ‘fx’ next to it), click ‘Copy layer style’. Now select the element you want to shadow and right click on it in the layers panel. Click ‘Paste layer style’.


One last tip that I’ve found really useful. I really like to journal directly on top of my photographs so I can get more pictures and more words in. Sometimes though, it can be hard to read so I add either a strip of paper, or just a rectangle of white underneath the text and adjust the opacity of the layer (at the top of the layers panel) so it doesn’t completely obscure the photo beneath.


And that’s it, a completed pocket page! Remember you can adjust the page to suit your style. This template comes with stitching to make it closer to the style of the physical products, but you might prefer a cleaner design. I changed it up by removing some of the embellishment, shadowing and using more neutral colours. Which do you prefer?


I hope that’s inspired you to give digital pockets a go. If you have any questions, feel free to ask in the forums! We also have a pocket scrapbooking section in the gallery where you can head for inspiration.

JudeAbout the Author: Jude Toone is part of the Creative Team at The Digital Press. She lives in the UK with her husband and two fantastic girls. She’s loves travelling and would be off in her campervan every weekend if she could get away with it and loves time spent exploring new places and trying new experiences – and photographing them! She also spends too much time on the computer and doesn’t go running as often as she says she’s going to.

Focus on the Story

Let’s face it… grabbing one awesome photo and the new, latest fun kit is the easiest way to get your scrap fix. I’ve done it and I’m sure you have as well. This year I am striving to change that. I want to delve deeper. Find more stories. I want to focus on finding stories in my photos. I want you to focus on this as well and be on the lookout for those photos that can lead you to tell a deeper story.

Yesterday, I was outside with my son and I remembered how as a toddler he would love to run free and I would take a photo of him running free. Well, I asked him to run free for me yesterday with every intention of telling this story. I went looking in my hard drive for running free photos and started with the one of him a toddler. To see the changes in 4 years is incredible and also made me a little teary. I almost have a 6 year old boy! And this is what I want you to get from focusing on stories- the emotional aspects.

Here is the layout using a new release coming this Friday from Anita Designs. The kit is called Timeless.


Another story finding approach I tend to use is compiling photos from a couple of months to tell a story. Like this two pager with photos of my kiddos and I between January and March of last year. I went through my monthly photos and picked out my favorite photos and created a wonderful story. Telling your story as a Mom AND getting in the photos with your child(ren) is something I consider priceless.


Telling stories gives photos a deeper meaning then being just a photo. It can capture the blessings of the ordinary everyday life, the silliness of your child over the months, the fun hobbies you enjoy and an overall appreciation for the vast quantity of photos we all take.




This year I want you to join me in Focusing on finding more stories to tell, journaling the story and printing the story. Be mindful of story opportunities in your life. And be sure to check out the Focus on the Story challenge.

SabrinaAbout the Author:  Sabrina Poole lives in a quaint house with her two lively children she calls Captain and Sunshine. When she’s not cleaning up their messes she can be found lost in a good book or creating another scrapbook page.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

Happy Saturday!  A huge hello to you!  Today marks the very first Hybrid post here on The Digital Press blog!  I am going to show you how to use those digital designs with your Silhouette Cameo to create a one of a kind home decor item perfect for gift giving to newlyweds or for keeping for yourself!

And…. I’m hosting a giveaway where one lucky reader will win this beautiful set of pillow cases simply by commenting on this post!  You can receive additional entries by sharing this post.  To get additional entries, comment again telling me where you shared this post!

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

I have had this project on my “to do” list for months and, after seeing Kim Broedelet’s Forever: I DO word art in the shop, I knew it was PERFECT for what I had in mind.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

The word art is part of her Forever: I DO: Collection.

Here is what you are going to need to create your own pillow cases:

  • Pillow cases, pre-washed without laundry soap or fabric softener
  • Siser Easy Weed heat transfer vinyl
  • Silhouette Cameo
  • Silhouette Studio program
  • Bride and Groom stick figures from the Silhouette design store
  • heat press (or iron)

I just recently ventured into the heat transfer vinyl (HTV) world with my Silhouette.  It has been a learning process with lots of mistakes along the way!  Hopefully, I can help you avoid some of the same mistakes I’ve made!

First, make sure that any tshirt, sweatshirt, hoodie, pillowcase, etc. that you are working on is pre-washed.  This helps pre-shrink the item so that all your hard work (shhh… it’s not really HARD work) isn’t ruined with the first wash.

Also, I do not use any laundry soap or fabric softener when pre-washing items.  Fabric softener can cause the heat transfer vinyl not to adhere to your item.

After washing my pillow cases, I used my heat press to “iron” them so that they were wrinkle free.  I then measured my pillow cases so that I knew how large my design needed to be.  I decided that my designs needed to be around 9 inches tall.

In my Silhouette Studio program, I opened and resized the bride and groom stick figures.  Next, I needed to trace the word art that I chose for my pillow cases.  Unfortunately, the Cameo cannot “read” a png file and “cut” it.  You have to trace it.

Tracing things definitely takes practice, but since I am cutting images in vinyl, it’s forgiving if it’s not perfect.  YouTube has many videos on how to trace.

To trace Kim’s word art, I opened the two files that I chose – the “From this day forward” and “The Best is yet to come” png files.

Open the trace window – it’s the little icon in the top right corner of your program that looks like a little blue slice of bread. LOL

Click on the Select Trace Area button.  Click and drag a box over the image that you want to trace.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

For this particular image, I found that by unchecking the High Pass Filter, decreasing the scale to 1, and increasing the threshold to 100% gave me the best trace.  By “best trace”, I mean that it gives me the most detail and the sharpest edges on the small areas of the design – like the word “the”.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

The change of color to yellow is how the program “knows” what to trace.  Any areas left the original color won’t cut correctly.

Once I was happy with the trace, I hit the Trace button in the program.  By using this option, the program traces (puts red lines) around all the parts of the letters including the inside of the letters.  At this point, you can either move the original png file off the mat or delete it.  This leaves the red tracing lines that the program will use to cut the heat transfer vinyl.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

Copy and paste the word art onto the same mat as the bride and groom stick figures.  Resize the word art to your liking.

NOTE: At this point you can position and space the word art where you’d like it to be next to the stick figure which will leave you with pieces of wasted, possibly unusable pieces of HTV or you can position both images very close together so that they are cut with the least amount of wasted vinyl possible.

Once you are happy with the layout of your design, group all the different files together by clicking on one and then while holding down the shift button of your keyboard, click on the rest of the files.  Click on the “Group Selected Shapes” button in the lower left corner of the program.

Next, you will need to mirror the image.  This cuts the vinyl so that correct side of the vinyl adheres to the pillowcases.

TIP:  Much to my dismay, I’ve wasted several pieces of HTV because I did not remember to mirror my image before sending it to the Cameo for cutting.  I now have a post-it note taped to my cameo that says “Mirror the image for HTV!!”  Another tip I saw online somewhere is to use a sharpie to write “Mirror image for HTV” on the edge of the cutting mat.

Apply the HTV to your cutting mat SHINY side down.  The shiny side is very obvious.  The shiny clear piece is the transfer sheet for applying the HTV to your fabric.  Load your mat into your silhouette and send your design to be cut.

Weed your design.  This is the term used to describe the peeling of the excess pieces of the vinyl that are not part of your design.  This includes the insides of letters like a, e, o, etc.  Your design will be backwards on the clear transfer sheet.  Now we are ready to apply the HTV to the pillow cases.

Pre-heat your heating press or iron.  If using a heating press, follow the temperature recommendations for the brand/type of HTV you are using.  For my heat press, I use the setting of 305 degrees F.  My heat press has a digital display.  If using an iron, I use the hottest setting on the iron and lots of pressure when adhering the HTV.

You will need to “warm” the area where you are applying the vinyl.  This helps draw out any moisture that may be in the fabric as well as helps improve the transfer process.

Position the HTV on the pillow case and cover with the teflon sheet or a piece of lightweight, cotton fabric to protect the HTV.

Using the heat press, I did a press of 10 seconds using medium pressure, allowed the design to cool a bit before performing another press of 10 seconds.

TIP:  I recommend doing some trial ironing when using HTV and an iron.  Cut some small pieces of HTV and play around with the settings on the iron, the pressure, and the amount of time it takes for the HTV to adhere to your fabric.  I used one of my husband’s old white undershirt to practice with both the iron and the heating press.

Siser Easy Weed vinyl is designed so that you can remove the clear transfer sheet while the vinyl is hot or cold. I like to start to slowly remove the transfer sheet while it’s still warm.  While doing this, I check to make sure the vinyl is adhered to the fabric.  If it’s not, I replace the transfer sheet and press again (not usually necessary if using a heat press).

After removing the clear transfer sheet, I once again cover the pillow case with the teflon sheet (or lightweight piece of fabric) to protect the vinyl and press it again for another 10 second cycle.

I then let the fabric cool and turn the tshirt/sweatshirt/pillow case inside out and press again on the reverse side of the design.  This pulls the HTV further into the fibers of the fabric for an even better transfer.

Here are the pillow cases side by side.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

and again, the finished pillow cases on the pillows.

Digital design + Silhouette Cameo = True Love (and a Giveaway!!!)

I hope you enjoyed my project!  If you have any questions about my project, please don’t hesitate to ask!!!

And remember, if you’d like to be entered into the giveaway, comment on this post!  And don’t forget that you can receive additional entries by sharing this post.  To get credit for additional entries, comment again telling me where you shared this post!

I will stop taking entries on Friday, 1/16/2015 at 11:59pm EST.  I will announce the winner here on the blog on 1/17/2015.  Good Luck!!!


LuAnn   About the Author: LuAnn Spang is a member of the Hybrid Team at The Digital Press. She lives just outside of Pittsburgh, PA with her husband, 2 adult sons and a teenage daughter.  She manages to find time be creative as a way of relieving stress while working full time as a LPN in an assisted living facility and attending RN school part time.

What’s The Focus Of Your Photo?


Now that the holidays are over, I am back to taking photos of my everyday life, my family, my dog, my neighborhood and a few selfies here and there. Have you noticed that sometimes the “focus” of an image might be obvious but other times your eye wanders all over the image, not really knowing where to look? You often don’t have time to stage a photo but if you have a few seconds to set it up, some simple tips might help you to better frame your subject and make your “focus” clearer. These tips can be used with a DSLR, point and shoot camera, your I-pad or your camera phone, whatever type of camera you have.

1.  Look at the background, are there any distractions that detract from your main subject? Is there a lot of clutter, especially around your subject? If so, try moving yourself, whether up or down, or to each side, to diminish that clutter out of the camera frame and then take your shot. Sometimes moving yourself and the camera just a few inches makes all the difference in what the camera will capture. Try standing on your tiptoes, get up onto a stool or chair, or get low, squat down, hold your camera lower and point upwards. Changing that perspective can make a world of difference in what image you capture. In these two images, I shot indoors, in cluttered rooms, so I came down to their level and shot across at them, thus eliminating a lot of the clutter of the furniture.

What's The Focus Of Your Photo?
2. If there is something in the foreground that I can use as a “leading line” to help bring focus to my subject, I will use it. A fence, a row of trees or a sidewalk are all great “leading lines”.

What's The Focus Of Your Photo?
3. If there is no getting around the cluttered background, then just try some tight framing, so the background distraction is minimized. Be careful not to come in too close because you might want to crop or print at different ratios so you will want to give yourself a bit of leeway for that. For these two images, I came in close enough that there is no mistaking what my “focus” is but leaves a bit of the background that isn’t distracting enough to worry about.

What's The Focus Of Your Photo?


When  your background is not uncluttered, try to remember to take a look at what is around the subject’s head, looking for some clean space. Watch out for anything that might be right behind your subject’s head. I’m sure we’ve all taken those photos where it looks like an antenna is coming out of someone’s head (the tree branch in the background).  The more your eye sees through the viewfinder or LCD and can correct before snapping that pic, the less you need to do in post-processing. Of course, the most important thing is to capture that moment, take the photo, but of second importance is to capture the best photo you can, preserving that memory forever. I hope these tips are helpful. Have fun and enjoy taking photos!

The Digital Press now has monthly challenges for you to participate in! Come on over and play along! Among the challenges this month is one called “What’s The Focus Of Your Photo?” which you will nail if you’ve read this blog article.  So, go have fun! Here’s the link:

What’s The Focus Of Your Photo Challenge at The Digital Press



Rae Clevett is part of the Creative Team at The Digital Press. She lives on the west coast of BC with her hubby and labradoodle, Taz. As a photographer and avid digital scrapbooker, most days she is either behind the camera or scrapping some of her personal photos. There is usually a cup of coffee on her desk and some chocolate treats, as she is a chocolate addict. Her laptop sits next to her computer so she can watch tv or movies as she scraps or edits photos. Taz usually lies on the floor beside her, playing with his toys. It’s a pretty sweet set-up, comfy and casual.

Focus on Journaling

Welcome to the kick-off of our monthly challenges!  Each month we will create a series of blog posts and challenges that correspond with one word.  This month, we chose FOCUS.  Focus could mean a myriad of things and we cannot wait to have you join us on our journey to discover how we can be focused in our scrapbooking.  You can read more about the thought behind the word here: Find Your Focus This January

For more information on our challenge system, please read more in our forum: Everything You Need to Know about Challenges

Now on to our first challenge…

Not to sound cliché, but some say that a picture says a thousand words. Perhaps. But for many of us, we create scrapbook pages as a form of memory keeping. As our family historians, we have set ourselves up to record the who, what, when, where, why and how of our lives. To pass on our life, in the moment, to our children and grandchildren. I know that I love it when my kids look through an album and not only look at the pretties on the page, but read them as well. Sometimes it sparks a memory which leads to some wonderful conversations. I love those moments!

Early on, right after discovering digital scrapbooking, I made many pages with a picture, paper, and elements and called it a day. Sure, it looked great to me, but looking back on those pages, I wish I would have jotted down, at a minimum, what was occurring in the picture(s).

I created the page below several years ago.  While the word art could speak for itself, I have found that when people look through my album, they tend to ask why my husband and I were so dressed up.  If I had added one simple line of journaling, then this would have been recorded and people would not need to ask.

Now don’t get me wrong, I to this day will scrap a page with no journaling because there are instances where I don’t feel like it is needed. That the picture(s) used do convey what I wanted, or a piece of word art speaks for me. Early on I rarely included journaling or put much thought into it – this is one of my scrapping regrets.

Why didn’t I journal? Good question. I suppose my own insecurities got the best of me as I felt like no one wanted to read what I had to say – I was wrong. Maybe it was because I felt like the picture was enough and looking back I realize that it wasn’t. Perhaps it was because I was not aware that I needed to journal. I do now in most cases.

Journaling does not have to be a long drawn out paragraph of deep, immense feelings and detail. It could simply be a one sentence statement of what is occurring, your thoughts/feelings, or simply who is in the picture. I tend to ask myself will I know the answers to who, what, when, where, why and how of the page looking back at it in 10 years?

Here are a few recent pages of mine where the journaling included the answer to these questions.  Reading the journaling, the viewer should easily be able to see what happened and the memory I wanted to capture.  Pages are linked for credits.


Christmas Spectacular


Christmas Spectacular

So why this discussion on journaling? I thought it would be great challenge to kick us off on our month of FOCUS. Let’s focus on the journaling. Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is located here, on the forums: Focus on Journaling Challenge

We cannot wait to see what you come up with!

About the Author: Rachel Alles is on the Creative Team here at The Digital Press.  She is fortunate to share her life with her loving husband, Doug, and two blessings: Madeline and Maxwell.  The three of them are her main source of inspiration for her pocket and traditional style pages.  When she’s not scrapping, she enjoys anything Disney related, learning more about photography (and attempting to turn the dial off Auto) and dabbling in home decor projects.

Find Your Focus This January

It’s the start of a bright and beautiful new year and we are so VERY excited to be launching our challenges here at The Digital Press! I’m here today to introduce them to you and tell you a little bit about our vision for the year.

Each month always seems to have a flavor all its own. January, for example, is a month that can be full of wishes, hopes and dreams. It’s a time for resolutions and a time to daydream. It’s a time to clear out all the clutter and put those messy holidays behind us. Everything is fresh, new and exciting. It’s a time to focus on the things that we want most from the year that’s so full of potential.

The word “focus” really stood out to me last week as I thought about things in my own life. But I just loved how this word also could apply to my love of photography and scrapbooking!

Focus has so many shades of meaning…


via Pinterest: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5)

So, in this first month of the new year, we are focusing in at The Digital Press!

We have some amazing and inspirational posts coming your way right here on the blog. We will also have a host of new challenges on the forums to spark your creativity and help you to make pages you really love.

You’ll find all the details of our new challenge system laid out for you here: Everything You Need to Know about Challenges

Our challenges start tomorrow. We hope you’ll join us then!

We hope you’ll have a great time scrapping along with us throughout the year. We’re looking forward to seeing all your beautiful work!

Nicole About the Author: Nicole Seitler is a designer here at The Digital Press, creating kits under the name Sugarplum Paperie. In her free time, she loves to to work on her Project Life album, knit or craft with her kids. But she doesn’t have much free time, since she’s also a stay-at-home homeschoolin’ momma of four. Her life may be a little crazy, but she wouldn’t want it any other way!

December Advent Winners

This month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we combined December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you got a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

The Digital Press Design Team

After revealing our 16th designer earlier this week, we randomly chose one winner from the comments you left each day (with a little help from… and we have a list of winners to share with you today! 🙂

DAY 1 | LAURA PASSAGE . . . comment #15 — Jenna
DAY 2 | DAWN BY DESIGN . . . comment #17 — Pamjoy
DAY 3 | KIM BROEDELET . . . comment #33 — skapu
DAY 4 | MARI KOEGELENBERG . . . comment #41 — jazzmom21
DAY 5 | SABRINA’S CREATIONS . . . comment #7 — Dolores
DAY 6 | SCOTTY GIRL DESIGN . . . comment #25 — jennifer
DAY 7 | MOMMYISH . . . comment #34 — wahoolady
DAY 8 | KARLA DUDLEY . . . comment #1 — sue_will
DAY 9 | DIGITAL SCRAPBOOK INGREDIENTS . . . comment #4 — Chloe
DAY 10 | KELLEIGH RATZLAFF . . . comment #11 — minicooper452
DAY 11 | ANITA DESIGNS . . . comment #19 — nkashopping
DAY 12 | AMANDA YI . . . comment #27 — meggersjm
DAY 13 | SUGARPLUM PAPERIE . . . comment #16 — simplyshayla
DAY 14 | MISS TIINA . . . comment #12 — Mary Kate
DAY 15 | CREASHENS . . . comment #6 — AmieN1
DAY 16 | DANIELLE ENGEBRETSON . . . comment #13 — Morwenna

Each of the winners will receive correspondence before the end of the weekend (Sun 12/21) with details about how to collect their prizes.  🙂

December Advent Day Sixteen: Get to Know Danielle Engebretson

Danielle EngebretsonThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve combined December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ve gotten a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s the final day of our December Advent Series — Day Sixteen — and today you get an extra special surprise! We’d like to announce our newest resident designer at The Digital Press… Danielle Engebretson! She’s got a playful, vintage-y design style that we know you will come to love, and her products are now available exclusively here at The Digital Press!



  1. I have been a dental hygienist for 14 years and I am currently the lead hygienist in my practice! I work 30 hours a week caring for my patients and I love my “day” job.
  2. My husband, who is my soul’s one true mate, is 17 years my senior. I have 2 beautiful children, 3 lovely stepchildren, and one grandson – and might be the youngest living grandma! Ha!
  3. I was an incredible gymnast from age 4-18 and won many state titles and have a collection of 30-50 medals in storage somewhere, and I have been blessed to have been given a daughter who is 11 and shares the same natural gymnastics ability! I am having so much fun watching her make her dreams come true, praying she has it in her to do college gymnastics! Time will tell. I also was a high school gymnastics coach for 4 years and coached younger ages throughout the years.
  4. My Kolbe index number is 7436: 7-fact finder (I eat up facts, need to research and find the history of most things before I move forward, my Apple devices and google are my best friends eva!), 4-follow through (I have to push myself in the follow through department of life, lists help), 3-quick start (this is the opposite of fact finder, and quick starts don’t need much information to get going on something. Though its funny while I am a total fact finder, I typically can gather my facts quickly and then get started, I keep it balanced), 6-implementer (once I have my facts, I am a pretty solid implementer). Kolbe Index is a measure of one’s internal nature, and I think it is pretty cool that this little indices is spot on to who I am.
  5. I am a total TV, music, and movie addict. Awards season is my favorite time of year! (yep I research all the movies, TV shows and trending music out there, have to have my facts straight). Sunday of award shows is Red Carpet Sunday in our house; it drives my husband batty.


  1. I love makeup – Urban Decay is my current obsession, and Sephora and Ulta are my best friends!
  2. I can’t live without books; I devour books and lack sleep because of this! Colleen Hoover is my favorite author.
  3. Breaking Bad is my favorite “finished” show on TV. The Walking Dead is my favorite “current” show on TV. My favorite show to binge watch on Netflix is “Orange is the New Black.”
  4. I love chewy Gobstoppers (they are nearly impossible to find).
  5. My favorite quote is, “What a slut time is, she screws everybody.” ~John Green, The Fault in our Stars


Huckleberry Road… this kit brings me so much joy! Autumn, what a great time of year!

Huckleberry Road


If you love Danielle’s products and would like a chance to win one free kit from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know what you love, and why you love it! At the very end of our December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!

December Advent Day Fifteen: Get to Know creashens

Shen of creashensThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve decided to combine December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ll get a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s Day Fifteen, and today you get to learn more about Shen of creashens. She’s got a whimsical, eclectic design style that we know you will adore, and her products are known for their amazing hand-drawn illustrations and paper patterns.



  1. I have one tattoo.
  2. I have one body piercing.
  3. I draw every day.
  4. I daydream about living in other countries.
  5. I love my daughter more than anything in the whole wide world.


  1. Food ~ sushi
  2. Dessert ~ flan
  3. TV show ~ Grey’s Anatomy
  4. Actor ~ Audrey Hepburn
  5. Place to travel ~ Italy


Hello, Love.… because it most reflects my style and creativity.

Hello, Love.


If you love creashens’ products and would like a chance to win one free kit from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know what you love, and why you love it! At the very end of our 2014 December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!

December Advent Day Fourteen: Get to Know Miss Tiina

Tina of Miss TiinaThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve decided to combine December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ll get a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s Day Fourteen, and today you get to learn more about Tina of Miss Tiina. She makes some of the most useful — and gorgeous — printable planners you’ve ever seen, and we know you’re just going to adore them!



  1. I am a hardcore procrastinator, I leave almost everything to the last minute.
  2. I’m addicted to frozen grapes – green ones only – and eat about $40 worth a week.
  3. I’ve never been married and don’t ever care to be.
  4. I have been self employed and working from home (and loving it!) since 2007.
  5. I wished for twins since I was about 5 or 6 years old, and when I was 24 I had a pair of boys. 😉


  1. Favorite place to shop online: anywhere really, I’m an online shopaholic!
  2. Favorite scent: rice milk + mallow dryer sheets, unfortunately discontinued, boo!
  3. Favorite color: grey all the way!
  4. Favorite food: chicken fajitas! MMM!
  5. Favorite time of day: bedtime, woot! I love sleeeeep!


My Everyday Planner

2015 Everyday Planner


If you love Tina’s printable planners and would like a chance to win one from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know which size planner you’d choose, and why you love it! At the very end of our December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!

December Advent Day Thirteen: Get to Know Sugarplum Paperie

Nicole of Sugarplum PaperieThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve decided to combine December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ll get a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s Day Thirteen, and today you get to learn more about Nicole of Sugarplum Paperie. She’s got a sophisticated, classic, papery design style that we know you will love, and her products are known for their gorgeous shabby papers and beautiful color palettes.



  1. When I was in college, I played rugby. I had never played another sport in my life, but suddenly I was all excited about one of the roughest, toughest sports in the world. Our team ROCKED. We were the best in the state!
  2. Before I became a stay-at-home homeschoolin’ momma, I was a paralegal.
  3. I have two degrees (in Legal Studies and Psychology), but I didn’t know what I really wanted to do with my life until I was 30 years old and I discovered digital scrapbooking. I didn’t think it would be “wise” to go to school for art (even though I wanted to when I was 18!), because I didn’t think I could make a living at it. Ha!
  4. I have had four kids, born in four different states — and we are not in the military. Those states are Tennessee, Maryland, Ohio and Florida (EST, for the win!).
  5. Besides scrapbooking, I am also obsessed with knitting, quilting and art journaling.


  1. Drink: Coffee. Anytime, all the time. But it must be the color of ice cream.
  2. Food: Mexican food is my comfort food. I love a taco full of fresh ingredients!
  3. TV Show: Veronica Mars!
  4. Game: Munchkin (any flavor of it). We own Munchkin, Munchkin Legions, Munchkin Impossible and Adventure Time Munchkin (for the kids). But my favorite one is Munchkin Booty (it’s pirate-themed). I also want to play Munchkin Pathfinder… because I also play Pathfinder. And that’s only because I love World of Warcraft! And… now you know that I am also a huge nerd.
  5. Book: Pride and Prejudice. For me, it’s one of those books you can read over and over again and always find something new to amuse you.


Hello Darling …

Hello, Darling : Kit


If you love Sugarplum Paperie’s products and would like a chance to win one free kit from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know what you love, and why you love it! At the very end of our December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!

December Advent Day Twelve: Get to Know Amanda Yi

Amanda YiThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve decided to combine December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ll get a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s Day Twelve, and today you get to learn more about Amanda Yi. She’s got a bold and graphic design style that we know you will love, and her products are known for their bright colors and the fun mix of dimensional elements they always include.



  1. I am a college student majoring in Sociology with a concentration in Criminology and minoring in Psychology. I am attracted to deviance! LOL
  2. I refuse to drink iced coffee without a straw!
  3. I make To-Do Lists on a daily basis… sometimes more than once a day…
  4. I am a young single mom.
  5. I have an impulsive tendency…


  1. Dessert: anything chocolate!
  2. TV Show: The Walking Dead… duh 🙂
  3. Movie: Forrest Gump rocks my socks.
  4. Place to Travel: New Hampshire (I don’t go to many places LOL).
  5. Time of the Day: BED TIME!


Go Places — I don’t travel much, but when I do I love to take it all in. Being in a new, unfamiliar place intrigues me. The color palette I worked with made the thought of travel even more intriguing!

Go Places | Kit


If you love Amanda’s products and would like a chance to win one free kit from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know what you love, and why you love it! At the very end of our December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!

December Advent Day Eleven: Get to Know Anita Designs

Anita of Anita DesignsThis month, in recognition of our site’s opening, we’ve decided to combine December Advent with a fun “Get to Know Our Designers” event. Each day, you’ll get a chance to learn about one of the amazing members of our Design Team.

It’s Day Eleven, and today you get to learn more about Anita of Anita Designs. She’s got a clean and simple design style that we know you will love, and her products are known for their delicate elements and cheerful color palettes.



  1. I am a real coffee addict; I can’t imagine having a day without coffee!
  2. I love thinking of pranks to joke around the house; examples: I hide at the toilet or under the door window, to scare my hubby or kids when they are coming home * I called up my aunt and told her in a conversation, that you can get insurance for your pet, at the KLM (dutch flying business) * When my son was outside of the house hanging with friends, I took the shower head and opened up the window and made them wet! * I pranked my uncle with a fake police parking ticket and fined him for square parking. 🙂
  3. I love Egyptian-style belly dancing and all roller coasters!
  4. I wanna see the world; I love traveling… Venice, Vienna, Sicily, London, Paris… I wanna see more.
  5. I dislike the autocorrect thing in my iPhone, because in a conversation with Karla about being sick and feeling sick, I wrote something like, “coughing up germs out of my mouth” …and it autocorrected to “sperms come out of my mouth.” I felt embarrassed but Karla nearly peed her pants laughing!


  1. Food: McDonald’s is a FAVE! Wake me up and tell me we are going to McDonalds, and we have a date! And anything pasta-related.
  2. Dessert: chocolate mousse.
  3. Movies/TV shows: Twilight, Armageddon, Titanic, Bruce Almighty, Vampire Diaries, Charmed, and Grey’s Anatomy.
  4. Sports: soccer, belly dancing, and tennis.
  5. Actor: I am a fan of George Clooney, Robin Williams, Ben Affleck, Bruce Willis, and Whoopi Goldberg.


That would be my recent Gilded Grab Bag (a collaboration with Karla Dudley).

Gilded Grab Bag


If you love Anita’s products and would like a chance to win one free kit from her shop… leave a comment here on this post and let us know what you love, and why you love it! At the very end of our December Advent series later this month, we’ll randomly choose one winner from all comments!