As any avid scrapper knows, crafting can be a great way to learn more about yourself and embrace all the things that make you special. Sharing this opportunity for self-discovery with the kids in your life is a great way to show them how much you care about them, while also introducing them to the joys of paper crafting and scrapbooking!
We’re excited to announce a new series of virtual events, specifically geared toward a younger audience. Introducing…CTMH Kids Crafts! These special virtual events will be hosted by Close To My Heart President Monica Wihongi’s nine-year-old daughter, Maya. Kids will love crafting along with Maya as she shows them how to create fun, personalized projects, just for them!
During our first CTMH Kids Crafts event, Maya will take kids through each step of creating the fun Born to Shine album! With an adorable 4″ x 4″ mini album from the Story by Stacy™ collection and some too-cute Picture My Life™ pocket cards from the Summer Vibes collection, the Born to Shine album is a perfect starting point for any kid to begin their crafting journey!
This first CTMH Kids Crafts event is taking place on August 21, starting at 4:30 p.m. (MDT). If you are planning to create along with Maya, you will need a Born to Shine album kit, which comes with one 4″ x 4″ mini album, one pack of Summer Vibes Picture My Life™ pocket cards, 4″ x 4″ sheets of white cardstock, the exclusive My Acrylix® Born to Shine stamp set, and a 2″ x 3½” ¼” stamping block. Apart from this handy kit, all that you or your kids will need to complete the project are a paper trimmer, an ink pad, some adhesive, and a journaling pen!
This project can be a great way to introduce kids to stamping and crafting, but it’s also an excellent opportunity to introduce them to the art of memory keeping, as they’ll get to select their own photos and decide what stories they want to tell.
The Born to Shine album is simple and fun to create, with some minimal cutting. Since paper trimmers or scissors will be involved, we recommend that any child who participates be supervised by an adult. (Each page in the Born to Shine album is made from trimmed down pocket cards and 4″ x 4″ cardstock.)
Every one of the layouts in this album your kiddos will make with Maya include fun, positive sentiments from the stamp set specially designed to celebrate their best qualities. At Close To My Heart, we want every kid to realize that they are special, and we’re so excited to help them embrace the things that make them great!
Just a few days ago, Maya and Monica went live on Facebook and they eagerly shared more about this brand-new series of events and the Born to Shine album. Take a look!
The CTMH Kids Crafts: Born to Shine virtual event is free to attend (watch), and as Maya says, this project is great for “every kind of kid!” Even if your kids aren’t little anymore, you can still share this event with grandkids, cousins, nieces, nephews, friends, or any other kid in your life! To make things even more exciting, we’ll be doing some fun giveaways during the live event, with tons of opportunities to win! In order to be eligible to win any of these prizes, make sure to mark yourself as “GOING” on the Close To My Heart (Official) Facebook events page. We can’t wait for you and your kiddos to join us for our inaugural CTMH Kids Crafts event and the many more to come!
As you likely know, I’m in LOVE with the idea of stacking memory protectors to create the room you need to incorporate MORE photos and MORE story into (on top of really) a foundation 12″ x 12″ layout. This approach is something I call Extended Story and the Close To My Heart Storyteller products make it so EASY!
But, did you know you don’t have to start from scratch with all these layers every time?
Using an already completed layout from one of your albums, you can simply add to it! That is precisely what I’m challenging you to do today!
The Extend-a-Story Challenge
I created this layout many moons ago to document everyday fun with my little boys. I adore the simplicity of a grid design and the colorful stickers still make me happy, but there is no journaling and so much more to say!
As I flipped through my albums, I chose this page as my foundation. In the midst of this crazy pandemic, I am realizing how important it is to create FUN at home with the people you love most. I will now be able to add a fun sister to this mix of brothers and bring this story up to date!
And, I’m excited to write from my current perspective—I even have an EXTRA FUN element that I want to add to my story AND share with you. A page about FUN should be FUN to discover—right?
1. Select a 12″ x 12″ page or layout from the past. Look for a topic or theme that you can build on with more experiences and detail from your current perspective.
3. Select pattern papers that coordinate with colors on your original layout—and remember, close is good enough! NOTE: I am particularly proud that I was able to use the new Happiest Place papers on this layout that is not about an amusement park, but FUN at home!
4. Think about an aspect of your topic that is different today (or one that is still the same) and design a new 8½” x 11″ or 6″ x 6″ page to highlight it. I like to ask myself questions like: When did we start doing this thing? or Who else is important to this topic? What are some specific examples or details that someone outside our family would not know? What has changed about how we do this thing today?
5. You now have plenty of room to journal, so if you didn’t have journaling—or not enough journaling—on your original page, you can add it now! Decide where and how to include these extra words.
6. Imagine how you want someone to experience this story—how do you want to introduce it? Pretend you’re building an open-face story sandwich—where the original 12″ x 12″ layout is the bread. Now, how will you stack the lunch meat, cheese, lettuce and tomato?
How My New Updated Extended Story Stacks Up!
First layer, 6″ x 6″ (front & back):
Second layer, 8½” x 11″ (front & back):
Third layer, 3″ x 4″ pockets (front & back):
Fourth layer, 4″ x 6″ pockets (front & back):
Final layer or foundation, 12″ x 12″ (original) + 12″ x 12″ (bonus)
All these layers create a very cool and FUN extended story!
In my process video above you saw how I incorporated FUN emoji journaling in two places of my story. Feel free to borrow this emoji alphabet and the key to cracking it for your own using!
If you would like to add a secret emoji code to a page, or card, click here to download a printable PDF. If you download this PDF, you’ll be able to either screen shot the code breaker, or print the PDF and cut it out to tuck behind a photo to be discovered and used later!
IF you made it this far, you deserve a FUN 🎟🌈🍪🍓🎟 (that’s written in secret code of course!). May I suggest some FUN Storyteller products from Close To My Heart?! 😀
This is my daughter, Addie, cracking the secret emoji code.
As I was typing my journaling, I used the insert feature in my word processor and then scrolled down to Emojis &Symbols menu. From here you can select or search for the emoji you need and insert it into your document.
Be sure to print a copy of theemoji code breaker to tuck behind a photo or somewhere else in your pages. This creates a FUN and interactive way to send a special message and have more FUN!
I can’t wait to SEE what you do with this challenge. Be sure to tag me on Instagram or Facebook using the hashtag #storybystacy ❤️
We’ve got a FREE card pattern for you today to get you thinking outside the theme park as you craft with our magical Happiest Place collection!
With so many unique elements and designs, the Happiest Place collection is simply bursting with creative potential. When you combine that with a versatile card pattern, it’s easier than ever to create the cards of your dreams!
The pattern we’re sharing today made its original debut years ago with the Pear & Partridge cardmaking Workshops on the Go®. This classic pattern helps you take the Happiest Place collection to new heights and provides the perfect starting point for truly great cards.
Pattern and color combinations like the ones in this “You’re the Koalaest” card are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what can be done with the Happiest Place collection and the Pear & Partridge card pattern.
By combining the My Acrylix® A Koala-ty Day stamp set with the fun abstract designs and eye-catching silver foil stars on the Happiest Place papers, you’re left with an absolutely adorable card! Part of this card’s charm is the simple Glacier on Glacier color scheme, relying on the variation in patterns to set them apart.
If you want to get a bit more adventurous with your color combinations, then cards like this “Gnome-body Loves You Like I Do” card are a great way to go!
This card was also made using the Pear & Partridge pattern but with a completely different effect than the Koala card. By using the same pattern and simply switching up the color combinations and stamped images, you can easily create a countless number of unique cards. For this example, we chose the delightful My Acrylix® Gnome Matter stamp set paired with some brighter colors. Even though the Gnome Matter stamp set isn’t part of the Happiest Place collection, they fit together like two peas in a pod!
All it takes to create a card that’s all your own is a great pattern and a little imagination.
Using the exact same pattern from above, we created this sweet “Celebrating You” card. In order to get some added milage from your card patterns, consider turning them on their sides, changing the orientation from landscape to portrait.
With simple color combinations from the Happiest Place collection, the Pear & Partridge card pattern, and our Floral Celebration—August Stamp of the Month (available August 1–31), this adorable card has it all!
Proof that less is more, the timeless Pear & Partridge pattern is a great starting point for any card maker, regardless of experience. Click on the link below to download this free pattern and gear up for some serious crafting fun!
We have a special treat in store today! Our Creative Arts Manager, Karen Pedersen, is showing us a few creative and easy watercolor techniques using our small round and medium round waterbrushes!
Unlike a traditional paintbrush, the handle of a waterbrush is made up of a water reservoir, eliminating the need for a water cup. The light colored bristles allow the painter to easily determine their color load and paint concentration, and the included cap protects the bristles and brush head while also sealing the water inside.
If you are accustomed to using traditional paintbrushes, you will notice that controlling a waterbrush is quite different. With a little practice, however, you too will find your groove and discovery why we love them!
Follow along with Karen, below, and pick up a few tips and tricks for making a waterbrush work for you!
Here’s a closer look at the artwork examples from the video:
The first watercolor technique you saw teaches how to create a colorful background like the one on this page. Using a medium round waterbrush, lay down watercolor paint onto an all-purpose mat. Then, lay the paper you want to add the color to facedown onto the paint and allow it to soak up for a few seconds. Turn your paper right side up and let it dry before continuing with your project.
If you look closely, you’ll see that in this Welcome card, we have two different watercolor techniques to talk through. The first, is the stenciled background. Using a stencil we created out of a stencil sheet and a Cricut® shape, we were able to paint a beautiful watercolor textured background with a medium round waterbrush. The second technique Karen talks through is how to achieve the detail and color variation seen in the plants of this card using the small round waterbrush.
The last technique we share can easily make any of us look like watercolor experts! Instead of ink, add watercolor paint to a raised stamp and use it to create the image on your artwork! Look how beautiful those leaves turned out on this card! Make sure not to add too much water to avoid ending up with a blobby image. (In the video above, Karen shows you how!)
If you’re a fan of waterbrushes, please leave us a comment below and tell us why! AND…if you’ve got any tips or tricks you’ve picked up along the way, please share those with all of us, too!
There’s nothing like a well-placed Cricut® cut to give your projects that extra pop! When you bring Cricut into the mix, your crafting possibilities are endless. In order to offer even more creative options, we’ve partnered with Cricut to create coordinating mini collections for the paper collections featured in our bi-monthly catalogs!
Although we recently said goodbye to our May–June catalog, along with the Aurora and Stitched Together suites, you can still access their coordinating Cricut® collections. These mini Cricut collections, will be available exclusively through your Close To My Heart Consultant for a whole year!
Today, we’re giving you an exclusive look at the Aurora and Stitched Together Cricut® collections and introducing you to the new Summer Vibes and Timber collections from our July–August catalog. These collections are designed to coordinate seamlessly with the patterns, stamps, stickers, and embellishments included in their corresponding paper suites. However, these versatile Cricut shapes can also be used on their own as you branch out and open the door to new avenues of creative possibility!
With rugged designs and a rustic feel, you’ll be ready to embrace the call of the wilderness with the Cricut® Aurora Collection.
Just look at how these simple pine tree and wolf shapes coordinate with the Aurora paper patterns and stamps to create beautifully unique background elements, while this adorable airplane creates a perfect focal point for this fun card!
Good times are made even more memorable when paired with the delightful Stitched Together Cricut® collection!
When the shapes in this collections are combined with the vibrant designs and color palette of the Stitched Together suite, you’ll be amazed at the artistic possibilities you’ll find!
You can use the Stitched Together Cricut shapes to create eye-catching accents like the miniature floral bunches, fun butterflies, and cute title banner you see below!
Sunglasses and sandals set the tone for the exuberant Summer Vibes Cricut® collection! With so many fun, summertime shapes to choose from, you can create the perfect title, accent, or background piece to coordinate with your Summer Vibes artwork.
Using Cricut shapes in your artwork is a great way to cultivate a unique, polished look. Because these shapes coordinate flawlessly with the other elements in the Summer Vibes paper collection, you can create stunning page elements, like this innovative combination of a Cricut shape, Thin Cuts die-cuts, and a Summer Vibes acrylic shape! (Can you tell which is which?)
Prepare to get lost in a rich and rewarding crafting adventure as you explore new territory with the Timber Cricut® collection! Let your creativity run free as you discover all the fun options the Timber Cricut collection has to offer and blaze new trails as you create your own stunning combinations with the Timber Cricut shapes!
By using the Timber Cricut shapes in conjunction with the exclusive stamps in the Timber collection, you can create stunning textures and movement within the shape itself. These pine trees are a great example of how a simple pattern and a simple Cricut shape can come together to make something great!
Feeling inspired? Great! All of these collection-coordinated Cricut® shapes can be yours today! For our readers in North America, you can add these fun collections to your Cricut account by visiting your Close To My Heart Consultant’s website and clicking on the Cricut icon at the bottom of the page. From there, you’ll be able to view and purchase any of the four collections we’ve shown you today. Once you’ve completed your purchase, you’ll be able to go into your Cricut Design Space™ account and search for these shapes in the “Image Sets” section on the “Images” tab.
Our readers in Australia and New Zealand may view and purchase these collections through your Consultant’s website. You will then be emailed a redeemable code.
We can’t wait to see how you use these awesome Cricut® shapes in your own creations! Leave a comment below to tell us about your favorite collection and how you’re using these designs in your own artwork!
Hold on to your hats, because we’re going on a VIP tour of our newest and most magical collection, yet—the Happiest Place!
Summertime is the perfect time to make memories, and the Happiest Place collection is the perfect way to preserve them. With vibrant colors, delightfully whimsical patterns, and a wide selection of fun products to go with them, the Happiest Place will bring a smile to any face!
1. Happiest Place Paper Packet + Sticker Sheet
Let’s start everything off by taking a look at the Happiest Place Paper Packet + Sticker Sheet. This packet comes with twice as many patterned papers than the packets in most of our other collections, with 12 sheets—2 each of 6 double-sided designs!
Along with this awesome paper count, we’ve also got a beautiful sticker sheet, complete with silver glitter foil accents! This eye-catching assortment of stickers is the ideal complement to the fun designs of the papers, and you’ll love accenting your artwork with them!
2. Happiest Place Coordinating Cardstock
The Happiest Place Coordinating Cardstock adds yet another element of wonder to this magical collection. Like the sticker sheet, this cardstock pack includes a selection with silver glitter foil designs. With these shiny patterns, it’s easier than ever to add a little sparkle to your cards and scrapbook pages!
3. Happiest Place Acrylic Shapes
Looking to add even more dimension to your project? The Happiest Place Acrylic Shapes coordinate perfectly with the patterns in this collection and make a great addition to any card or layout!
In addition to the Happiest Place stamp set and Thin Cuts, the new Magical Alphabet stamp set from our July–August catalog fits right in with the Happiest Place collection. Expand your creative magic even further and create personalized, coordinated titles!
5. SVGs (Digital Art)
Along with the playful images in these stamp sets and Thin Cuts, the Happiest Place also includes a variety of digital art options. With two collections of SVG files—Happiest Place Digital Art Titles and Happiest Place Digital Art Designs—you’ll be all set to use and cut these too-cute shapes for yourself using your favorite digital design program and personal digital cutting machine! These shapes can be used to cut paper for your cards or layouts, or they can be used to cut vinyl images for a one-of-a-kind album cover, like this one!
6. Happiest Place Cut Above® Kit
Use the materials in this kit to create the pages of an 8½” × 11″ album. No fussy-cutting required!
The Happiest Place Cut Above Layout Kit includes pre-printed base pages, exclusive die-cuts, pre-cut pieces, and instructions to guide you through every step of the way! No cutting or stamping necessary. Just pair this kit with your memories along with a journaling pen, photos, and adhesive!
7. FREE Virtual Event!
Join us as we host another fun andfree 3-day virtual crafting event, beginning August 26! For more information, visit the Events tab on the Close To My Heart Facebook page, here. We’ll be doing some exciting giveaways in conjunction with this event, so be sure to mark yourself as “Going” when you visit our Facebook page to be registered for the giveaway opportunities!
We’re so excited about the Happiest Place collection, and just can’t wait for you to get your hands on it! Make sure to talk to your Consultant for even more information about any of these items and additional special offers available. (If you do not have a Consultant, find one in your area, here.)
ATTENTION card lovers! Our new Craft with Heart™ cardmaking kit is out so we’ve got some beautiful new cards to show off today! These fantastic cards are here just in time for summer, and they’re just the thing to get your creative wheels turning. With fun, fresh designs, these cards will even come together in a matter of minutes!
Each card in a Craft with Heart™ subscription box is part of our Cut Above® program, which means that all of its parts and pieces come pre-cut and ready to go as you get to crafting. Some of the paper is also pre-printed, so it’s quick and easy to create a polished handmade card in no time!
The May–August 2020 kit comes with everything you need to make 24 cards (2 each of the 12 gorgeous designs you’ll see here). Along with the pre-cut and printed card pieces, each Craft with Heart™ cardmaking box comes with an exclusive stamp set, a mini ink pad, and even a specialized ultra-thin stamping block. We also provide an easy-to-follow instructional/inspirational guide to help you put your cards together. However, to really help you make these cards your own, the guide also shows a few different options on how to use the stamps included in the kit.Whether it’s a birthday card, a thank you card, or a “just because” card, these cards are the perfect way to show your care for friends and family, all while letting flexing those creative muscles when you thought you didn’t have the time to.
Not only will you love making the cards, they’ll be a special handmade treat that anyone would be delighted to receive! The Craft with Heart™ program truly has creative options for everyone, including two payment options, so you can tailor your Craft with Heart™ experience to what’s best for you.
The cards in this subscription box will only be available until the end of August, so be sure to sign up for your own Craft with Heart™ cardmaking subscription and get started on making these adorable cards yourself! Happy crafting!
Just in time for the fourth of July, follow along with us in this DIY décor session and whip up some red, white, and blue Americana, and celebrate all patriotic holidays using a little bit of texture paste, a stencil, and a free Cricut Design Space™ file!
This tutorial uses shapes from the Close To My Heart Cricut® Artistry collection. The necessary shapes needed to complete the wreath exactly as shown are available as a project file in Cricut Design Space, here. If you do not have this Cricut® collection and would like to purchase it, contact your Close To My Heart Consultant (or find one here).
Step 1: Cut Your Paper
From the provided Design Space file, cut the shapes shown above first. Once you’ve cut these shapes, lightly trace the chipboard four with a pencil onto the remainder of your Sapphire cardstock sheet. Cut the shape out with scissors and then, to age the appearance of your project, distress the edges with a fine grit sandpaper.
Step 2: Add Mixed Media
One of the Cricut® shapes that you will cut using the provided file is a star patterned stencil sheet. Before attaching the Sapphire cardstock layer to the chipboard four, use this stencil with texture paste to create a raised star patterned on the cardstock.
Once the paste is dry, use an adhesive runner to attach the cardstock to the chipboard.
Step 3: Assembling the Tags
Most of the pieces you will need to assemble the tags are included in the Design Space file provided. What you will have to cut on your own are the Sapphire, silver glitter, and Candy Apple pieces used behind the “USA” cutouts in the first tag and four 5½” x ⅜” white stripes to attach to the second, red tag. The third tag is simply the Sapphire tag with the cutout stars attached on top of the solid White Daisy cardstock tag.
If you prefer a more vintage look, use the sandpaper again and also the Espresso pigment pad to lightly rub along the edges of the tags to achieve a distressed, weathered appearance. Add as little or as much pigment as you’d like to make this look just how you want it.
Step 4: Put It All Together!
Using your handy dandy glue gun, attach all of the pieces to the wreath. (Even though our tags may look like they are attached to the chipboard four, they are not. These are glued to each other and to the wreath.) Embellish with some ribbon and glitter gems, and you are all set to proudly display your Americana décor!
With the promise of fun days and happy memories ahead, the much-loved Brushed paper collection is back now and through the end of July! With a re-vamped color scheme, a new 12″ x 12″ coordinating sticker sheet, updated coordinating cardstock, and two additional popular stamp sets from the past, the vibrant Brushed collection is just the thing to brighten up your days to come!
These gorgeous stamp sets are ideal for unlocking hours of crafting fun! The beautiful spring designs in the My Acrylix®A Budding Friendship and Your Own Kind of Wonderful stamp sets are the perfect addition to any card or scrapbooking layout and are sure to help your artwork flourish!
Featuring our exclusive colors, Canary, Candy Apple, Green Apple, Lagoon, Pixie, and Smoothie, the Brushed paper collection comes with six refreshed patterned paper sheets, two each of three double-sided designs, and one new coordinating sticker sheet! Click on the individual thumbnail images to take a closer look!
With its eye-catching new color scheme, delicate designs, and wealth of whimsical patterns, we can hardly wait to share the Brushed collection with you!
Join us for a FREE live virtual craft event on June 30th, 2020 at 2:00 pm MDTon our Facebook page! We will be creating one single-page layout, three two-page layouts, and eight standard-sized cards, all using this beautiful and exclusive Brushed collection. To learn more and to sign up for this free event, click here.
***Make sure to click “going” on the event page in order to be entered to WIN FREE PRIZES during the live event.***