Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Hi everyone!! It’s Kylie here with today’s Product Spotlight …with a little bit of a twist!
Usually, we shine some love on one (sometimes more!) of the beautiful digital collections available at the Shabby Shoppe. This week I went into the Shoppe and did a bit of mix’n'match-style-shopping! I should add that this is something I rarely do – full kits generally have my complete and undivided attention – but a ‘do-it-yourself’ collection, or an item here or there, is such a fun way to expand your digi-scrapping supplies! Plus, a girl can never have too many accessories!! :o)
First, I wandered into the digital papers aisle and chose the Semi-Solids Paper Collection (on SALE for only $2.35 for a limited time). Each paper has a gorgeous, but subtle, tone-on-tone pattern. There is an assortment of pattern styles, too; from pretty damasks, romantic florals, fun spots to whimsical swirls and more. And as always, I’m a complete sucker when it comes to the paper names – poppy red, sunshine yellow, lagoon blue, peony pink, tropical waters blue… see what I mean!!
Now that I had my new paper collection all wrapped up, it was time to move onto the next item on my ‘shoppe-ing list’: embellishments. Just a quick click away… the embellishments aisle! What a treasure trove!! And because it’s all about the details, I picked out these three items (all on sale for only $1.50 each for a limited time):
detailS ~ Buttons
buttons…a scrapbookers best friend! And these layered buttons are cute, fun and way
detailS ~ Labels
- stitched and shabby-style file folder labels that you can add to page after page! Dates, titles, journaling or just because
All four products will be ON SALE at the Shabby Shoppe for a limited time – 30-40% off each item!
Let’s see how the Shabby Artists used their talents to create layouts featuring these four products. Some of us used just the spotlighted items and others coordinated them with other Shabby Princess goodies. To see these lovely layouts in more detail – you can view them in the Shabby Artist gallery!
Thanks so much for dropping by the blog today! SP will be back on Thursday with the next installment of project SCRAP! Yippee! :o)
Product Spotlight, Uncategorized
Monday, March 21, 2011
Hi all – Anna here with another fabulous LOTW! I wish I had more hours in every day because if I did, I would spend lots more time looking through the incredible inspiration gallery. It’s so fun to be the one to choose layout of the week! It means I allow myself time to peruse all of your beautiful Shabby Shoppe creations! And yes - you are all so talented!
Unfortunately, I could only choose one ‘winner’, and that very talented gal is graciewollf with her beautiful layout…
Aurora Spring Fun
In fact, graciewollf posted seven beautiful layouts in the gallery this week. Check out her all her incredible pages HERE!
Watch your e-mail inbox, graciewollf! You will be getting a $10 Shabby Shoppe-ing spree! Have FUN!
Please stop by tomorrow for Kylie’s PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT!
Layout of the Week, Uncategorized
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Hello!! Beckie here bringing you a little inspiration for putting some pizazz into your journaling! I’ve been wanting to do a post on journaling for quite some time. I believe journaling is such an important part of the work we do as scrapbookers! I wanted to share with you today a few ideas that may make journaling a bit more fun – maybe even something you look forward to on your pages!
Sometimes a simple starter prompt is all you need! Getting that first sentence out of the way “anchors” your journaling and sets the perspective for everything else you’ll write. Using a simple “starter strip” is not only a great way to start off your writing, but also to add a small design element to your page as well! Making a starter strip is super simple, too!
- Select a font. I like to use a traditional “type” font because of the way it really stands out from the handwritten fonts I prefer for the body of my journaling.
- Type out a starter phrase (see ideas below!).
- Select a neutral paper and “cut” a strip of paper to fit your phrase! Be sure to leave space for a fastener if you intend to use one.
That’s it! The best part about starter phrases is that they can be completely generic or they can be customized for your page! Here are a few more examples:
- I knew it was hopeless when…
- It’s all fun and games until…
- I love it when you…
- My favorite days are spent…
- From the mouths of babes…
- This was a moment to celebrate because…
- Your favorite part of the day was…
- I’ll never forget…
:::Really Big Titles:::
I know – seems like cheating, doesn’t it? :) But seriously, why write out yet another paragraph about how cute/funny/loved this child is when the whole point is that he said something really funny about the balls from the sweet gum tree? Journaling doesn’t mean you have to write paragraphs of perfect prose; it just means that you’ve written down the important stuff before you forget it!
The really big title technique works well for funny quotes, but it also works for strong declarative statements, too! I made a page last summer that had the huge title “I really, really, really hate summer”. I did it in cool, dramatic alphas, too :) Because I really, really, really hate summer. I’m not a hot weather girl and it regularly gets over 100F where I live! Other examples include: “The best day ever”, “Never Again”, “Another year older”, etc.
:::Highlight Key Words:::
What better page to illustrate highlighting in journaling than one about my daughter learning to read. This was a technique that I used all-the-time as a paper scrapper. I loved to get out my watercolor crayons and pencils and to paint and doodle over important words! I love the extra splash of color and the way your eye is drawn to the words that are highlighted.
Want to achieve this effect? Simple! Create your page and journal as usual. Then create a new layer and place it below your text layer. Use the brush tool to brush over key words. You might need to adjust the opacity of the brush layer – in my layout above, I used the eyedropper tool to set the color to the bright goldenrod color in the paper, but I reduced opacity to 65%.
Be sure to check out this post for more ideas and techniques for “watercolor” brushing on your layouts! Oh, and the little bookworm sticker was created from a font I purchased online using this technique.
I hope these examples today have given you a few more ideas for turning the task of journaling into something fun!
Thanks for stopping by – we’ll see you back here on Monday for LOTW! Have a great weekend!
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Hello everyone! Beckie here bringing you a new Tips & Tricks post! SP is always so great about including lots of textured elements in her scrapbook collections, including ribbons and strings. Today I wanted to share with you a little tutorial for using layer masks (and the burn tool) to make your ribbons POP! I intentionally created this tutorial for you today using Photoshop Elements (version 8) – to help you learn how to use layer masks in Elements. Versions of Photoshop have a really great “layer mask” feature, but we have to do a few extra steps to access this feature in Photoshop Elements, which I’ll explain here :) I have a lot of content to cover today…so let’s get started!
:::Lay out your materials:::
We’re going to work on a simple example today to create the effect that a ribbon is threaded through paper! I created a sample layout that consists of two papers (from the Darling Paper Collection) and a blue ribbon (from Occasions). I also like to add drop shadows at this point, which makes it easier to see the dimension of the ribbon and the paper in subsequent steps. Adding shadows on your ribbons is essential to pulling off a realistic effect on your layouts and projects.
:::Cut Slits to thread your ribbon:::
Obviously we’re not really cutting any slits, nor are we actually threading our ribbon :) But that’s the easiest way to describe the next step, digitally! We’re creating “slits” in the top layer of our paper, through which we’ll “thread” our ribbon! Simply select the top layer of paper in your layers palette, then use the rectangular marquis tool to create the two parallel rectangles at each point in your ribbon where you wish to create the appearance that the ribbon has been threaded through. I created one set of holes on each side of the center bow.
:::Create Layer Mask:::
If you have Photoshop, the next set of steps will be slightly different (and much easier!). But for Elements users…
- Select your ribbon layer in the layers palette and then click on the little half black/white circle at the bottom to create a new adjustment layer. The type of adjustment layer you create really doesn’t matter, but I usually select “brightness/contrast”.
- Elements will create the new adjustment layer above the ribbon, but for our purposes, we need it to be below the ribbon - so move it down now.
- With the ribbon layer selected, click CTRL + G to group the ribbon with the adjustment layer. Your layers palette should be arranged like the sample below.
Photoshop users: Select the ribbon layer in the layers palette and then click on the “Layer Mask” icon at the bottom of the layers palette.
:::”Thread” ribbon with the layer mask:::
- OK – this next detail is VERY important! You want to click on the layer mask of our brightness/contrast layer. Click in the area I’ve circled in red below.
- Now press the “b” key (or click on the brush tool in your toolbox), and be sure that your foreground color is black. When using layer masks, remember that white reveals, black hides. We want to hide a portion of our ribbon to create the appearance that the ribbon is underneath the paper slit we created. Be sure you have a hard edged brush.
I’ve zoomed way in below to show you what we’re trying to do. There’s one more trick that comes in really handy, and that is to use the SHIFT key to create a straight line between two points with the brush tool. To do this:
- Click at the top of the ribbon, exactly where you wish to “erase” it to reveal the paper beneath. Then, press and hold the SHIFT key, and then click at the bottom of the ribbon. You’ve now brushed a straight line between those two points, which effectively “erases” the ribbon where you brushed! I brushed a line once to remove the left side of the ribbon, then repeated to remove the rest of the ribbon on the right. Do this for each of the slits you created.
If you make any mistakes and remove too much of the ribbon, no sweat! All you have to do is switch your brush color to white and paint over the area you want to add back in (that’s the beauty of layer masks!). Then switch back to black to carefully remove the specific area of the ribbon over the paper slit.
We could stop there and your results would be pretty great. But we’re going to use the BURN tool to add more depth and realism to our threaded ribbon! Look at my finished product below. Notice the subtle “shading” of the ribbon right next to the paper slits below? See how that shading creates the effect that the ribbon is actually wrapped beneath the paper slits? Let’s BURN!
:::the Burn Tool:::
- Locate your burn tool. It took me a while to find it, as it’s hidden from you in Photoshop Elements if you haven’t used it before. The burn tool looks like a little hand making a circle, but it’s probably hidden under your sponge tool (a yellow block). If so, right-click on the sponge tool to reveal the burn tool.
- Be sure your ribbon is selected in the layers palette.
- The process for burning is very similar to what we did when we brushed on our layer mask to “erase” the ribbon. I left the default tool settings, which is exposure at 50% and range is Midtones. But I did two passes with the tool. First, I positioned my burn tool where you see the red circle below. I clicked, pressed and held SHIFT, then clicked at the bottom to draw a straight line down.
- Then I repeated the process at the yellow circle position, to make the burn effect darker closer to the paper. The burn effect is cumulative, meaning, each time you pass over a spot with the tool - it will continue to darken. I repeated this same process for the other three sides of the paper slits we created previously.
Well that wraps up a simple example with basic masking and burning techniques!
How about two more examples? Both of these simple photo mats were created with a straight edge ribbon that I altered using the eraser tool and the burn tool. For this photo of my daughter, I used the eraser to slightly round the edges then the burn tool to create the depth and shadow to finish the illusion that the ribbon is wrapped around the photo.
This final example was also created from a straight-ended ribbon. I used the circular marquis tool to create circles in the white paper, then used the eraser tool to round the ribbon ends to create the appearance that the ribbon was threaded through the holes. Again, the burn tool provides perfect depth and dimension to finish off the effect :)
Well that’s all I have for you today! I hope you learned new ways to make use of your ribbons. I can’t wait to see your creations in the Gallery!
Tips and Tricks, Uncategorized
Monday, March 14, 2011
Happy March Everyone! Anna here with my choice for layout of the week. I am so excited for spring!!! We are finally getting some good weather around here and it makes me happy – yippee!!! That’s why I couldn’t resist this fabulous layout!
shabby tracy’s page “Spring Sprout“
Isn’t her sweet granddaughter “Olivia” adorable? Please be sure to ‘leave some love’ in shabby tracy’s gallery.
Congratulations Tracy – and watch your e-mail for your $10 in Shabby Shoppe goodness!
Thanks for stopping by! Be on the lookout for Beckie’s Focus on Photos post this Wednesday.
Layout of the Week, Uncategorized