Shellie: Hybrid "Celebrate" birthday card

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This card I made as part of our April Challenge.  We haven't been keeping up with out challenges very well but I do plan on going back and doing the ones that I missed.

April's challenge was to make 3 cards and give them away.

This card I made for my Sister-in-law, Miranda.  Her birthday was May 21st.  She did not get this card because I'm AWFUL at sending cards on time.  It's something I REALLY want to work on because really it's a bad habit I need to break.  But my entire family is getting together on the 28th to celebrate my mom's and my aunt's birthday so I'm going to give it to Miranda then. (I forgot again.  So it's going in the mail.)

I have always loved this cupcake image from one of the One Little Bird digital kits from a year, maybe two years ago.  I downloaded the file this month and used it to make this hybrid card. 

First I inserted several elements from the kit into Adobe Illustrator (importing them into Silhouette would work also).  In this case I did the cupcake (I duplicated it and made several sizes because I wasn't sure which size would look best on the card.), a couple of the hand written greetings and this plaid background paper because I loved the colors and how they matched the cupcake.

I did a live trace for the words and cupcakes and with a tiny bit of tweaking created an offset path so I could cut out the files and leave a little bit of a white border around the elements then I printed them and cut them out using my Silhouette.  It worked BEAUTIFULLY.

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In fact, it worked so well that the part that took me the longest was deciding where to place the two background tags.  I must have moved those two little rectangles of paper about a million times.  But I finally settled on a spot.  A little sprinkle of sequins and this super cute card was finished.

I really enjoyed using the hybrid method and my digital stash to create this card and think I may do a lot of this in the future.  My digital scrap stash is huge and so much of it has gone unused and I think this would be an awesome way to get more out of those files. 

And Happy Birthday, Miranda.

 

April Monthly Challenges

It's the 1st and you know what that means!  New challenges.

1. The Cut Challenge - as always, we want to encourage ourselves to get the most out of our amazing Cameo Silhouette machines.  They are capable of doing such cool things but if we don't make a purposeful decision to use them, they quickly start to gather dust.  So every month in 2016 we will strive to use our machines to create at least one cool project. 

2. The OTHER Challenge - Create 3 cards and give them away.  Now I don't know about you, but I love to collect pins on pinterest of beautiful cards that others have made and that I want to make "Someday".  Well guess what, someday is this month.  And since the theme for this month is Give, after we make the cards, we are going to give them away.  Heck yeah, we are. 

Please join us for these challenges.  And if you do decide to join us, let me know so we can enjoy your work and share it here on the blog as well.  Tag me on facebook, instagram or send me an email at shelliemg@gmail.com.  Also comment below with a link to your work.

March Monthly Challenges

It's the 1st and you know what that means!  New challenges.

1. The Cut Challenge - as always, we want to encourage ourselves to get the most out of our amazing Cameo Silhouette machines.  They are capable of doing such cool things but if we don't make a purposeful decision to use them, they quickly start to gather dust.  So every month in 2016 we will strive to use our machines to create at least one cool project. 

2. The OTHER Challenge - Use paint.  Watercolors, acrylic, craft.  Silk screening?  Art Journaling? Sure fine.  All of the above. Any way and any kind of project works.

Please join us for these challenges.  And if you do decide to join us, let me know so we can enjoy your work and share it here on the blog as well.  Tag me on facebook, instagram or send me an email at shelliemg@gmail.com.  Also comment below with a link to your work.

Shellie: Super late January cut challenge - stickers from a printable

My January cut file challenge project was to use my new Felicity Jane printables to print and cut on sticker paper for my planner.  This isn’t supposed to be a challenge in the sense that it’s hard, the challenge is to use our silhouette every month at least once.  (Hopefully more than once, but at the very least once.)  Since this is the only cut project I did in January, it wins! LOL

I signed up to receive the Felicity Jane monthly kits because I just love their color scheme.  The black and white is something I’ve been loving so much lately and the pops of color are “my” colors so it just made sense.  Also, she doesn’t do like 20 add on options that I always feel like I “must” buy.  I did add on some paper but it’s not like I’m sucked into spending $100 plus each month on my kit.  Because I can never resist a good add-on.  It’s a flaw.  I’m working on it.

Each month she sends out an exclusive printable that we can use along with our kits and January’s included some super cute labels and tags that were perfect for how I’m using my Erin Condren planner at the moment.  Currently I’m using each of the three sections as a different category, work, personal and blog.  So I wanted to label each week that way.  I also made a little silverware graphic but cropping off part of one of the One Little Bird word art flags and I’m (supposed) to be using that to track my food at the bottom of each day in this weekly layout.

Using the print and cut feature with sticker paper is so fascinating to me because I get so happy with how it cuts through each sticker perfectly, but doesn’t cut the paper backing.  It’s so neat!  I know, I know…the simple minded are simply entertained. 

Anyway, hopefully my February cut challenge will be a bit more entertaining. I’ll strive for complexity.  Sorry for the delay in getting this one up and posted.

February Monthly Challenges

It's the 1st and you know what that means!  New challenges.

1. The Cut Challenge - as always, we want to encourage ourselves to get the most out of our amazing Cameo Silhouette machines.  They are capable of doing such cool things but if we don't make a purposeful decision to use them, they quickly start to gather dust.  So every month in 2016 we will strive to use our machines to create at least one cool project. 

2. The OTHER Challenge - Use a technique you have NEVER used before - I don't mean something you don't do often.  I mean NEVER.  This is the perfect chance to be adventurous and do something you've always wanted to try.  Maybe a project from that online class you bought a year ago but never took.  Why not now?

Please join us for these challenges.  And if you do decide to join us, let me know so we can enjoy your work and share it here on the blog as well.  Tag me on facebook, instagram or send me an email at shelliemg@gmail.com.  Also comment below with a link to your work.

Shellie: January Challenge - Best of 2015

When considering challenge ideas for the year, I didn't want to go the obvious direction where January was concerned.  I didn't want to do goals or resolutions.  Instead I decided to go the other way and reflect on what was good about 2015.

This ended up being a fun but challenging project for me.  It was fun looking back through the year and selecting what were my favorite moments.  It was hard - specifically when choosing photos to represent my two trips - narrowing the photos down to only a few.  There were so many great memories to choose from.  I also tend to avoid using photos of myself and I couldn't do that here.  This is something I want to work harder at in 2016.

This year I went with the following from left to right then top to bottom as my best moments.

  • My trip to Las Vegas with Gina in May.

  • My trip to Disney with Gina in July.

  • The spinning retreat I attended in Destin in January. (I go again in just 2 weeks!)

  • The birth of my niece, Selah in July.

  • My other new niece, Kaydence, turning one also in July.

  • Having the entire family together at the church where we all grew up in October.

I used a collection of various digital products.  I just knew when I started I wanted the background to be black and white.  I've lowered the opacity to make it less harsh.  I meant to use a bunch of different kinds of frames but using the multiple images from my trips sent me looking for photo strips and I ended up using 3.

So challenge #1 for January is done for me.  I have absolutely no idea what I'm going to do for my cut challenge but I need to get on it. 

Until next time!

Shellie

January Monthly Challenges

Hello lovely friends and Happy New Year!

I'm so excited for 2016!  Gina and I have such amazing and positive plans for this new year and we are hoping to make it the best ever.  We are going to be doing a lot of new things around the web site and we are so pleased to be able to share them with you.  You'll see many great things in the coming days.

To start things off, lets announce our January monthly challenges.

1. The Cut Challenge - as always, we want to encourage ourselves to get the most out of our amazing Cameo Silhouette machines.  They are capable of doing such cool things but if we don't make a purposeful decision to use them, they quickly start to gather dust.  So every month in 2016 we will strive to use our machines to create at least one cool project. 

2. What was GREAT about 2015? - The focus of our second challenge is to focus on what was great about 2015.  January is always so focused on the future.  Ending every bad habit, starting new ones, losing weight, etc.  But I also want us to take a moment and create a project (any kind of project) that explores the many good things that happened in 2015.  I know that for many of my friends it really hasn't been the best year ever, but even bad days have good moments.  What was great about your year last year?

Please join us for these challenges.  And if you do decide to join us, let me know so we can enjoy your work and share it here on the blog as well.  Tag me on facebook, instagram or send me an email at shelliemg@gmail.com.  Also comment below with a link to your work.

 

Gina - November Cut Challenge - A Moment to Cherish

I think the best thing about using the Silhouette store is the ability you have to find a phrase that perfectly fits a photo or a memory that you have and that is certainly the case with the layout and die cut shape I picked for this month’s challenge.

Stew and I headed south Labor Day weekend like we do every year to visit my brother Shawn and his family.  One of the greatest treasures of my life (and if you’ve followed me for any length of time, you already know this) is the relationships I have with my nieces and nephews.  This niece in particular is pretty much my mini me – though, thankfully for her, she gets her fashion sense from her mother! 

I was over-joyed to learn that she has begun to keep a journal.  I very much want to cultivate this joy for journaling and this habit for her because I think it will be a wonderful thing to look back on over the years and discover how she’s moved from who she is now at seven to the adult that she will become. 

Before bed on this particular evening – and honestly, I can’t believe I’m sharing this picture considering that I’m in my pajamas and glasses and the face has been washed clean – she and I sat down in bed to capture the moments of the day.

She wanted to journal about the events that occurred on Tuesday when she met her friend’s mother for the first time because, and I’m quoting here, “nothing special happened today.”  With me sitting next to her, she says this – thanks, Kid! 

Since the layout is all about us girls, I took this opportunity to use supplies that I don’t pull out often.  I had bling, and pearls and flowers and the list of girlie things goes on and on.  Even still, from that stash, I only ended up using a few pieces of bling and the flowers and butterfly from Prima. 

I started this layout using a sketch from scrappingrooster.com.   If you haven’t seen Gretchen’s work, I highly recommend that you get over there and check it out.  She’s quickly becoming one of my favorites.  You can see the sketch and her layout here.  Using a sketch was a great way to quickly figure out what has been troubling me in my scrapbooking lately – it’s all about the layering of those papers.  Somehow I’ve forgotten how to do that and it’s creating much frustration.  The more I do it, the better it will become again, but like with everything else in life, if you don’t use it you lose it – let’s not talk about my math skills, okay?  I’ll be practicing that in my next couple of layouts, but in the meantime, using the sketch as a starting point did make jumping in easier.  I quickly veered away, but came back again when it was time to add the cluster in the upper left.  What a novel thought, that I don’t have to have every element on my page touching.  Ahhh, how freeing. 

In the end, this may be the happiest I’ve been with a layout in some time, so thank you Gretchen!  Believe me, I’ll be coming back for some more sketch inspiration very soon.

Unfortunately, there will be no process video for this layout.  I made the video, but when I uploaded it, I sounded like a chipmunk - of the Alvin variety.  I have no idea what sound a real chipmuck makes.  The raw files for this one are gone - so we'll have to admire just from the stills.  Hope you still enjoy and I'll be back later with process videos coming your way.

Until next time, Gina

Gina - October Cut Challenge "Always By My Side"

The cut file I used for this month’s challenge, I bought a long, long time ago, but I always intended to use it with a picture of Stew’s mom and dad.  They’re bird watchers and mom loves owls, so this silhouette file was just perfect for them.  When their 46th wedding anniversary came around this year, dad posted this picture of them from their wedding on Facebook, as he does every year.  I just knew that this was the perfect opportunity to meld that photo and this die cut together.

I always print my die cuts on American Crafts white cardstock.  It’s the best I’ve found for cutting and it accepts colors pretty well.  I thought at first that I’d color the die cuts with gelatos, but decided spraying them with mist would be easier – or so I thought.  Most of the mists I pulled out to use on this layout are clogged.  I’m going to have to do something about that – what that is, I haven’t a clue, other than I think this is a sign that I need to use my supplies more.

I wanted the layout to be black, white and red – a combination that is one of my favorites and I think is perfect for wedding layouts.  I decided to spray the tree with silver from Mr. Hueys, the hearts with a red from Heidi Swapp and the owls black, also from Heidi Swapp.

Then the struggle began.  I wasn’t sure where to place anything on this layout.  But after moving things around and fiddling with it some more and leaving it to go watch some tv – I came back to it and realized that the major problem I was having was the longest branch on the tree was going the wrong way.  Flipped that over, sprayed the other side, and finally, I settled on a layout that I was happy with.  The thing I think I love the most about this layout, other than the cute as heck picture, is the hearts I put on the owls.  I just think with the way they are looking at each other and the way Mom and Dad are looking at each other in the photo, the love is so evident – it’s perfect.

I’m super happy that this photo is now a permanent part of my scrapbook, since really, this moment truly captures the very, very beginning of Stew and my story. 

If you’d like to watch me put this layout together, as always, you can follow the link below to my YouTube channel…


Until next time, Gina

Shellie - November Challenge "Food" - Las Vegas Eats

For my November challenge (food) I decided to use the photos we took of what we ate when Gina and I went to Vegas in May.  On our trips we try to take a picture of all of our meals, whether it's a donut or somewhere fancy.  We did the same on our Disney trip in July.  I think that the only meal we didn't take a picture of was the buffet brunch we had at the Wynn. 
The dining tables and the buffet were so seperate that it didn't occur to us I guess.  I do have some pictures of the flowers they had but none of my food or the buffet tables. 

These pictures are almost in order of consumption except I wanted the "feature" picture to be my favorite meal.  Technically photos 2 and 3 on the bottom row would be reversed it I had these completely chronological.

During the Black Friday sale at The Lily Pad digital store I bought a set of what in my head where page templates.  I loved this layout above and the others are simple and minimalist and I just liked them.  If I'd been paying attention I would have seen that these are not template but pre-designed pages.  The only parts on the original layout I could actually edit was the journaling.  I could insert my photos, change the copy and that's it.  But I didn't want to use the embellishments she'd used on this particular layout because they didn't coordinate with my topic.  Fortunately I was able to remove them using photoshop but that means the other layouts that came in the set are going to be the same and that's disappointing.  (They're still pretty, don't get me wrong, but I wasn't buying what I thought I was in my head.)

But I was able to fix this one easy enough.  Most of the embellishments I used were from One Little Bird.  She's still one of my top favorites when it comes to digital scrapbooking files.  I used two of her digital kits - Nosh and Prix Fixe

Nosh - two phrase paper strips.  Prix Fixe - flair, wood veneer silverware, bon appetite word art

The glitter sprinkle is from Valerie Wibbens in her embellishment set called Sprinkles V34.

My favorite part about scrapbooking and documenting is that as I go back and look through the images I get to experience the memories and moments again.  It's the best part I think and I know that's the point.  But sometimes I forget and it's a nice reminder when I get down into a project... oh yeah, this is the whole point.

Until next time.

Shellie