Back to the Basics with Cricut Design Space™

No matter your comfort level with Cricut Design Space™, it’s good for everyone to revisit the basics. Today, and in a few more blog posts in the upcoming months, we’re going to explain some of the basic tools in Design Space and then illustrate how to use these tools with images from each Close To My Heart Cricut® collection. Making sure you have the basics down will only increase your confidence as a Design Space user, unlocking so many creative options for your crafting!

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

On the page above, we’ve used a banner from the Artistry Cricut® collection to create the title piece. Artistry has a wide variety of words and shapes including titles, sentiments, backgrounds, borders, and banners that you can use for any project theme. Whether you are celebrating a birthday or holiday, or scrapbooking everyday moments, you have lots of choices with this collection, and even more when using the tools in Design Space.

As you read along, remember that the steps below show you how to work in Design Space from a desktop or laptop computer. If you use the app on a mobile device, the buttons and tools will be located in slightly different places on your screen, but the same features are available on any device. Let’s get started by taking a look at the project canvas.

Your Canvas

 Whether you are new to Design Space or a seasoned pro, it’s useful to identify the different parts of the canvas and where to find particular functions and tools.

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

  • Design Panel: This panel, on the left side of the canvas, is where you add new elements to your project like basic shapes, images, text, and more.
  • Header: The Header is just the fancy title for the dark gray strip across the top of the canvas. This is where you can click to view the menu and see your project name. The Header is also where you’ll find a few more VERY useful things, like Save and Make It in the top right corner. 🙂
  • Edit Bar: Below the Header, you’ll see the Edit bar. This section of the canvas houses many of the tools you’ll need to manipulate specific shapes and text. Here you can find tools like Linetype, Size, and Rotate. There are also options to Align and Arrange shapes, and most importantly, the top left corner is where you’ll find Undo and Redo, just in case you make a mistake. When you are working with text, more tools for adjusting the text will appear in the Edit bar.
  • Layers Panel: The Layers panel holds tools that you might need when working with multiple images together. Tools like Group, UnGroup, and Duplicate are at the top of this panel. These tools let you copy, combine, or separate images. The Slice, Weld, Attach, and Contour features are at the bottom of the Layers panel.
  • Color Sync Panel: The Color Sync panel and the Layers panel share the same space on the canvas. To see this panel, click Color Sync, instead of Layers. This allows you to match colors used in your project’s shapes. Grouping them together by color makes it easy for you to cut shapes from the same paper.

Searching for Specific Shapes

#M4171A5

Have you ever wondered what this number means? You might see a number like this one in instructions or recipes we provide for artwork that use Cricut® shapes. This number is the image number in Design Space. When inserting an image on your canvas, you can search for a specific image by entering the entire number in the search box. Make sure to include the “#” symbol when you search.

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

To search for a specific image, click Images on the left side of your canvas. Then enter the image number in the search box in the top right corner, just like we did to find a the banner used in this project.

Changing the Size of Shapes

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

A simple tool you’ll use over and over again is Size. In the Edit bar, you’ll see Size and then the width and height of a selected image. You’ll also notice a lock symbol. When the lock is closed, if you adjust the width of the shape, for example, Design Space will automatically change the height to match the proportions. If you want to change both, simply click on the lock. It will unlock, allowing you to manipulate either one as desired.

Grouping and Ungrouping Shapes

Some images in Design Space have multiple layers. When you insert the image on the canvas, the layers will be grouped together. To manipulate each one individually, you have to use UnGroup. Simply select the image and click on UnGroup.

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

You can see that this banner image has two layers, one solid base layer and one overlay with the words “DREAM Big.” To make changes to each one individually, we ungrouped the image.

 Duplicating Shapes

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

Another frequently used tool in Design Space is Duplicate. This lets you make a copy of any shape or shapes you have selected. Just click on the shape and click Duplicate at the top of the Layers panel.

Welding Shapes

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #designspace #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

The word weld basically means to unite. While it often refers to metals, in Design Space, when you use this tool, you can combine, or “unite,” multiple shapes into one image, removing extra cut lines. Simply arrange the images as desired. Select all of them at the same time and click Weld. Now, instead of many separate images, they will be combined together as one single shape. This is how we created the solid base piece for our title.

Putting It Together (Search, Size, Duplicate, and Weld)

Cricut Basics #ctmh #closetomyheart #cricutbasics #cricut #scrapbooking #scrapbook #cardmaking #papercrafting #papercrafts #dreambig #memorykeeping

The title at the top of this page is made using the tools we’ve reviewed today to manipulate one image in Design Space.  Follow the steps below to put it all together and make your own!

  1. First, search for the image, #M4171A5, and insert it on your canvas.
  2. Ungroup the image.
  3. Resize the solid banner to a height of 3″, leaving the width locked. Then, duplicate and resize to have six additional banners, two 2″ and four 1.5″.
  4. Arrange the banners like you see on the page with the solid 3″ banner in the center and one 2″ and 1.5″ banner on either side. Click and drag your cursor over all the images to select them all. Then, click Weld. This gives you the solid piece to go behind the remaining banners.
  5. We, then, went ahead and colored the additional 2″ banners light yellow, and the additional 1.5″ banners pink. This just helps you cut the right color of paper or cardstock.
  6. Select Make It in the top right corner and cut your project pieces. Then, assemble your title like you see on the page.

Keep in mind, to use the same image we did, you must own the Artistry Cricut® collection. You will also need a Cricut® machine that is Design Space compatible (any of the Explore or the new Maker machines).

Stay tuned for another back to the basics post next month featuring more Design Space tools with the Flower Market collection to make… cards!


Recipe:

12″ × 12″ Dream Big Page
X7242B I Heart Us Paper Packet, X6007 Lagoon Cardstock, X5986 Mint Cardstock, X6027 White Daisy Cardstock, X7242C I Heart Us Complements, Z4304 Loose Sequins—Silver, X7242E Picture My Life™ Cards—I Heart Us, Z1151 3-D Foam Tape, Z2089 Glue Dots® Micro Dots, Z3500 Cricut® Artistry Digital Collection, Sewing Machine

Cricut® Shapes:
Artistry
1.5″, 2″, 3″ #M4171A5

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Sponging and Droplet Technique on Cards

We love using colorful inks to create cool backgrounds on cards. Today we are showing you how we made the vibrant gradient background on the card below.

sponging_techniques-card-2-hero.jpg

Let’s get started!

First, we picked our colors. We needed a full spectrum to create a rainbow effect, so we used Candy Apple, Raspberry, Nectarine, Lemon, Willow, Bluebird, and Pansy from our Exclusive Inks™ collection. The next thing to do is to prepare your sponges.

sponging_techniques-process-sponge

We took one of our round sponges and cut it into wedges, one for each color. (Daubers also work, if those are your preference.)

Firmly hold your paper on your work surface. A little bit of rolled up washi tape on the back of your cardstock should do the trick for when you can’t hold it in place with your hands. Now, to the fun part of sponging on the colors!

With an inked sponge wedge, start off by applying your first color with light pressure and in a circular motion. Continue to apply the color until reaching the desired level of saturation. As you switch colors, slightly overlap each for that blended look.

After all of our colors were applied we splattered our background with Spritz Cleaner to achieve a water “damage” look. First, we unscrewed the top and dropped fat drops of Spritz Cleaner onto the ink straight from the tube. Then, we replaced the top and sprayed the card for smaller droplets. We suggest using Spritz Cleaner instead of water because the ink will separate better and create the desired effect without warping the paper like water will.

We finished the card by heat embossing a sentiment and cute balloon in white.

sponging_techniques-card-2

One of the great things about this technique is that you don’t always have to sponge your ink on a solid color piece of paper. Take a look at how we used this same technique on patterned paper to create this other card:

sponging_techniques-card-3

It also looks great with just one color:

sponging_techniques-card-1

What do you like about this sponging technique? And if this isn’t new to you, what are some ways that you do things differently? Please share your creative thoughts with us in the comments below!

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5 Ways to Get Out of a Creative Rut and Get Inspired

We’ve all been there. No matter how much we enjoy creating, eventually there comes a time where we find that our creative juices are anything but flowing. It is nothing to feel bad about. Lulls come and go and are part of the creative process. However inevitable these ruts may be, we do at least have some control over how long we allow ourselves to stay in them. Below are five suggestions to get out of that brain-lock and find your muse.

  1. Carve out a creative space.

Workspace Wonder™ Organization #ctmh #closetomyheart #workspacewonder #work #space #wonder #organization #organisation #system #storage #solution #stacking #declutter #papercrafting #paper #craft #crafting #diy #cardmaking #scrapbooking

Dedicate a physical place for your crafting and take the time to nest. Make it a place that reminds you of how much you love scrapbooking or cardmaking (or both!) and why. While craft rooms can be fabulous, this creative space doesn’t have to be an entire room. A desk or a table work just as well. Include quotes, photos, finished projects, supplies—whatever supports your creative energy. Once your place is all set up, don’t let it get stale. Keep wanting to spend time there by keeping it up with a cute new pillow, or quote, or photos, etc. Make this the place you physically go to, and want to go to, when you work on your art.

A physical place is just the beginning of a creative space. Before going to your place, make sure your mind is going with you, too! Clear your mind of stresses to make room for new ideas to sprout and grow. Everyone does this a little bit differently. For some, going on a walk or a drive does the trick. Others may require locking the door, turning on some music, and dancing without inhibitions. Whatever your process, do your best to clear your mind and stay present before you sit down to create.

  1. Show up.

You’ve carved out a creative space, both physically and mentally. Now, the next thing is to show up. Set time aside for the thing that you love and make it the thing to do at that time. Add it to your daily, weekly, or monthly schedule. The important thing is that you include it in your routine and that you actually take the time to do it. Even if you don’t have a project that you are currently working on, feed your creativity. Sit down in your place and create something. Remove the pressure of creating for a specific reason. You create because you love to.

  1. Try something new.

Enhance your creativity by doing things differently from time-to-time.

sistine-chapel-ceiling

Michelangelo, one of the greatest artists of all time, always thought of himself as a sculptor and not a painter. When he was commissioned to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel he tried turning it down but was eventually persuaded otherwise. (Aren’t you glad?) Up until that commission, Michelangelo had never painted in fresco or even used color in any of his art.

Just like Michelangelo, you’ll never know what you are capable of if you stick to the same, habitual, never changing methods and ideas. Experiment with new media, new products, and new techniques. Even though you will fail occasionally, you will also have successes.

  1. See what others are up to.

This is the point where we tell you to take your headphones off and connect with the world that is around you. Visit museums and art shows, attend concerts and live theater, flip through magazines, go shopping, eat at your favorite restaurants, and spend time with uplifting people. Allow all of this creative energy to rub off on you and reign it in to use on your art.

  1. Keep an inspiration journal.

Keep a notebook or use your phone to gather and keep ideas that inspire you. You never know when you’ll see something that you just love to look at, for whatever reason—it could be a color combination, an arrangement, a theme, etc. Keep all of these ideas in one place to refer back to often, especially when you’re feeling creatively stuck.

Take a look at these two examples:

How to Get Out of a Creative Rut #ctmh #closetomyheart #creativerut #creativespace #creativeinspiration #artinspiration #inspiration #inspirationjournal

You’re out shopping for new linens one day when you realize that you can’t stop looking at the arrangement of the wall display. There is something comforting about how neat and organized everything is, so you snap a photo and move on with your errand. Later that week when you sit down in your creative space, you pull out the photo you took and then create the following page for your scrapbook, using the lines created by the shelves as your inspiration:

How to Get Out of a Creative Rut #ctmh #closetomyheart #creativerut #creativespace #creativeinspiration #artinspiration #inspiration #inspirationjournal #awesomelayout #scrapbooking

On another occasion, you’re flipping through a magazine and see this photo:

How to Get Out of a Creative Rut #ctmh #closetomyheart #creativerut #creativespace #creativeinspiration #artinspiration #inspiration #inspirationjournal

You clip the photo (or take a photo of it with your phone) and save it in your inspiration journal. Pulling from the heavy pattern on the wall and smaller items offset to the side, you create a card.

How to Get Out of a Creative Rut #ctmh #closetomyheart #creativerut #creativespace #creativeinspiration #artinspiration #inspiration #inspirationjournal #wildaboutyou

The card is based on the same compositional elements as the photo. There is a heavy pattern in the background, a large sentiment in the front (like the chair), with smaller complements next to it.

We hope that this new year brings lots of creative ideas to you all. And if ever in a rut, review our list above to help you find your inspiration.

What are some things you do to feed your creative energy?


Recipes:

4¼” x 5½” Wild About You Card (Horizontal)
X5999 Charcoal Cardstock, X6027 White Daisy Cardstock, X7241E Picture My Life™ Cards—So Much Happy, X7241C So Much Happy Complements, Z4254 So Much Happy Puffy Stickers, Z4270 I Heart Us Sequins, Z4221 Mink Twine, Z1151 3-D Foam Tape, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape

12″ x 12″ Awesome Page
X7240B Something Fierce Paper Packet, X5999 Charcoal Cardstock, X7241C So Much Happy Complements, Z4254 So Much Happy Puffy Stickers, Z3314 Black & White Dots, Z1151 3-D Foam Tape, Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape, Sewing Machine

 

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Color Theory: Complementary Colors and How to Use Them

Colors are important in making our artwork look good. But, how can you know if your color choices will work well together? When in doubt, you can rely on the basics of color theory to always make good color decisions.

Complementary Colors #ctmh #closetomyheart #complementary #color #colour #theory #scheme #diy #card #scrapbooking #colorfamily #colourfamily #family
This is the Close To My Heart color wheel, made up of all of our exclusive colors.

(Download your printable CTMH color wheel here.)

Complementary colors are two colors opposite each other on the color wheel, such as Cranberry and Willow (red and green), and Goldrush and Pacifica (orange and blue). If you notice, one side of the color wheel is made up of warm colors while the other is made up of cool colors. Complementary colors, since they are across from one another, will have one of each. They create a vibrant contrast, making each other pop without being jarring to the eye.

Complementary Colors #ctmh #closetomyheart #complementary #color #colour #theory #scheme #diy #card #scrapbooking #colorfamily #colourfamily #family

When you’re creating your art, in this case a scrapbook page, avoid using the two colors equally. To keep your artwork interesting, try using one of the colors primarily as a background and the other for accents.

Complementary Colors #ctmh #closetomyheart #complementary #color #theory #diy #card #scrapbooking
You can create something beautiful using one set of complementary colors. Like in this card and the page above, simply incorporating different hues of the same color (or color family) will give your art the visual interest we all seek.

Knowing how to properly use color will only enhance your artwork. Look for a new Color Theory post every month where we will share basic color concepts and artwork inspiration to help you make flawless color decisions that will elevate your artwork.


Recipes

12″ x 12″ Wonderful Page
D1757 My Acrylix® Stargazer—Scrapbooking Stamp Set, X7229B Stargazer Paper Packet, X7228B Gimme Some Sugar Paper Packet, X7230B Chelsea Gardens Paper Packet, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5962 Goldrush Cardstock, Z3367 Vellum Paper, Z2833 Pebble Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, X7229C Stargazer Complements, Z4143 Stargazer Dots, Z3169 Cricut® Artbooking Collection

Cricut® Shapes:
Artbooking
1¼”, 1½” Shift + Border <L> (p. 66, M46848)

4¼” x 5½” The World Is Yours to Explore Card (Horizontal)
B1565 My Acrylix® A New Adventure Stamp Set, X7227B Make Waves Paper Packet, X7228B Gimme Some Sugar Paper Packet, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5982 Canary Cardstock, Z2831 Charcoal Exclusive Inks™ Stamp PadX7229C Stargazer Complements, Z3364 Basics Ribbon Pack, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z3274 Clear Sparkles, Z3169 Cricut® Artbooking Collection

Cricut® Shape:
Artbooking
2½” Shift + Border <TeamWork> (p. 83., M46F65)

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5 DIY Gift Tag Ideas

Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove

We can think of no better way to dress up a gift than with a personalized handmade tag, so we came up with a quick list of ideas to help up your tag-making game this season!

1. Cricut® Shapes
Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove

Select a few of your favorite shapes and let your Cricut® machine do the rest! If you need to make a large number of gift tags, using a Cricut® shape is an easy way to get it done.

2. Pocket Cards
Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove
If you have extra pocket cards, try trimming them into a gift tag. Your pocket cards can become the base paper or even the sentiment!

3. Cut Above® Tag Kit
Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove

This kit was designed for tag making! Pair these tags with different ribbons, embellishments, and sentiments to change their original look, and voila! You have beautifully unique tags for the beautifully unique people receiving them.

4. Complements
Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove

Make use of any extra complements you have by sticking them on gift tags!

5. Stamping on Scraps
Gift Tags #ctmh #closetomyheart #diy #gift #tag #Christmas #presents #reindeer #rudolph #merry #bright #holiday #wishes #ribbon #mistletoe #snow #santa #tree #nice #naughty #list #red #green #ruby #newenglandivy #gold #glitter #complements #cricut #cutabove

We all have scraps of paper lying around from bigger projects we’ve worked on in preparation for the holidays. Instead of throwing it away (or hoarding it! J) turn your scraps into little gift tags with some fun stamps and ribbons!

Who knew that so much cuteness could fit into such small pieces of paper! Make your gift giving that much more special this season with some personalized handmade tags!

Share your results with us in the comments below!


Recipe:

Gift Tags
Z4043 Silver & Gold Scrapbooking Stamp + Thin Cuts, B1574 My Acrylix® I Made This Stamp Set, C1692 My Acrylix® The Thought that Counts Stamp Set, D1744 My Acrylix® Season of Sweetness Stamp Set, Z4048 Cut Above® Card Kit—Merry Everything, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5959 New England Ivy Cardstock, X5975 Cranberry Cardstock, X7225B Beary Christmas Paper Packet, Z4051 Picture My Life™ Cards—Silver & Gold, Z4050 Picture My Life™ Cards—Beary Christmas, Z3271 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2835 New England Ivy Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, Z2816 Cranberry Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad, X7226C Silver & Gold Complements, Z4012 Black Shimmer Ribbon, Z3363 Enchantment Ribbon Pack, Z3364 Basics Ribbon Pack, Z3216 White Twine, Z3189 White & Gold Ribbon, Z4038 Beary Christmas Dots, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles, Z3274 Clear Sparkles, Z3344 Thin Cuts—Basic Tags, Z3167 Cricut® Artistry Collection, Cricut® City Sidewalks Digital Collection, Die-cutting Machine, Hole Punch

Cricut Shapes:
Artistry
2¾” <Thksgvng> (p. 45, #MF644C1)

City Sidewalks (no longer for sale)
1¼” Snowflake (#MF644C1)
1¾” Holly (#MF647BC)

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Holiday Village

holiday paper village #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhouse #papervillage #wintervillage #papertree #paperlamp #christmasvillage

The winter village on the cover of our Holiday Expressions idea book has been getting a lot of attention, SO we are breaking it down on the blog today for you to make one of your very own!

First things first—to replicate our little paper houses exactly, you will need 3 kraft tapered tote boxes, two 6″ and one 8″ like these:

When we assembled our village, these were readily available at one of our local craft stores, but we’ve found some similar options available online that you can use to get the same look (see the recipes’ below for the links).

Now, let’s take a look at how we transformed these boxes into festive holiday decorations!

 

9″ Sparkle House

Materials Needed:
X7225 Beary Christmas Paper Packet
X7226B Silver & Gold Paper Packet
1385 White Daisy Cardstock
X7226C Silver & Gold Complements
X7224C Cats & Bats Complements
Z3371 Gold Pearls
Z3348 Thin Cuts—Scallop Border
Z4037 Thin Cuts—Tree Line Border
Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape
Z341 Glue Dots® Mini Dots
Z3372 Adhesive Runner
8″ Kraft Tapered Tote Box
Cotton Ball

Tips:

  1. Use Beary Christmas pocket scrapbooking cards for roof
  2. Trim holly from Beary Christmas zip strip to attach to front windows
  3. Front door is a sticker from Cats & Bats Complements
  4. Use a gold pearl as doorknob
  5. Dovetail “SPARKLE” sticker from Silver & Gold Complements and attach above door
  6. Fold chimney, cut to fit on rooftop, and attach with thin 3-D foam tape
  7. Attach cotton ball to roof inside chimney and pull up to create “smoke”

 

7″ Shine House

Materials Needed:
X7226B Silver & Gold Paper Packet
1385 White Daisy Cardstock
X7225C Beary Christmas Complements
X7226C Silver & Gold Complements
Z3371 Gold Pearls
Z3312 Gold Shimmer Trim
Z1799 Silver Shimmer Trim
Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker
Z3348 Thin Cuts—Scallop Border
Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape
Z341 Glue Dots® Mini Dots
Z3372 Adhesive Runner
6″ Kraft Tapered Tote Box
Cotton Ball

Tips:

  1. Use scallop border Thin Cuts to create the shingled-roof look
  2. Green tree on front is one of the white trees from the Beary Christmas Complements colored with marker
  3. Front door is a trimmed sticker from Silver & Gold Complements
  4. Attach black tree with thin 3-D foam tape
  5. Side shutters are a trimmed sticker from Silver & Gold Complements

 

7″ Bright House

Materials Needed:
X7226B Silver & Gold Paper Packet
1385 White Daisy Cardstock
X5954 Pewter Cardstock
X7225C Beary Christmas Complements
X7226C Silver & Gold Complements
Z3371 Gold Pearls
Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker
Z1979 Marvy® Uchida® LePen Journaling Pen
Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape
Z341 Glue Dots® Mini Dots
Z3372 Adhesive Runner
6″ Kraft Tapered Tote Box
Cotton Ball

Tips:

  1. Front door is a trimmed sticker from Silver & Gold Complements
  2. Draw a line with journaling pen to create double doors
  3. Green tree on front is one of the white trees from Beary Christmas Complements colored with marker
  4. Embellish green tree with red glitter stars from Beary Christmas Complements
  5. Attach black tree with thin 3-D foam tape

 

4½” Village Lamp Post

Materials Needed:
Z3366 Silver Foil Paper
1386 Black Cardstock
X7226C Silver & Gold Complements
Z1809 Black Shimmer Trim
Z2060 Thin 3-D Foam Tape
1772 Glue Dots® Ultra-Thin Dots
Z3167 Cricut® Artistry Collection
4″ Black Dowel
Glue Gun

Cricut® Shapes:
Artistry
½” Shape <Hlloween> (cut 4, p. 43)
1″ Shape <Hlloween> (cut 2, p. 43)

Tips:

  1. Attach two 1″ silver foil paper circles to dowel by wrapping dowel with thin 3-D foam tape
  2. Attach silver foil circles to each other at top with glue dots
  3. Wrap black shimmer trim to one end of dowel
  4. Glue together four ½” black cardstock circles to form base
  5. Attach dowel to base with glue gun

 

Trees

holiday paper village #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhouse #papervillage #wintervillage #papertree #paperlamp #christmasvillage

Materials Needed:
X7223B Falling for You Paper Packet
X7225D Beary Christmas Paper Packet
Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker
Z3167 Cricut® Artistry Collection

Cricut® Shapes:
Artistry
2¾”, 3½”, and 4″ Icon-2 <Christms> (cut 2, p. 48)

Tips:

  1. Trim stars and tree trunks off the Cricut® shapes
  2. Cut slit up the middle of tree shapes and slide them together to stand
  3. Color edges with marker

 

There you have it—our secrets to creating a paper winter wonderland! Please ask questions or share any tips of your own in the comments below!

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Large-scale Inspiration in Small Spaces

One of the perks of having Convention in Salt Lake City this year was the tour of our home office. Those who got to visit our place kept telling us how inspiring it must be to work in such a gorgeous and innovative environment. Well folks, the truth is, it is! If you tuned in to our Facebook Live yesterday, you got an up-close look at the space where Close To My Heart artists create all of the memory keeping and papercrafting artwork you love. It’s a craft room dream come true. We want to show you how to take some of the ideas we used to create this atmosphere back to your own crafting nook so you, too, can be inspired!

The first step in this process is to find what actually inspires you. Look for something great that someone else has made and make it your own. Once you’ve chosen something you like, take a moment to really consider it. What is it at its core? As you think about it, is there anything that clues you into how it was made?

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativityTake a peak into the Close To My Heart foyer. One of the first things visitors see when they walk into our building is this impressive mobile. Created from hundreds of paper hearts in various sizes and shades of pink, this is a breathtaking paper creation.

hearts-317

Because most of us don’t have fifty-foot ceilings to fit such a large décor piece, use this mobile as a starting point. Simplify the project. You can make a small version of this mobile or a banner of hearts that fits any space, including above a desk. The idea is the same—create a decorative piece with different shades of paper hearts, but with smaller and fewer pieces.

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativity #wallpaperhearts #walldecoration #wallhanging

Let’s take a look inside our art studio.

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativity #create

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativity #cricut #flower #banner

These two images show a small sampling of the papercrafting pieces and inspirational quotes our artists have designed to foster an atmosphere of creativity.

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativity #quote #createthethingsyouwishexisted #create

Here is that same quote found on the wall of our art studio. With a small frame and a handful of small paper flowers, you can showcase something that makes you feel creative while using little space.

You might not have a large space for working on your favorite projects, but you can use what’s around you to beautify your creative space in small ways. Large-scale sayings, banners, and other papercrating décor can be simplified to fit anywhere. You can see how all the parts and pieces came together to fill this desk space with elements of the papercrafting you saw in a much larger scale at the home office.

Large Scale Inspiration #ctmh #closetomyheart #papercrafting #paperhearts #hearts #mobile #inspiration #inspiringcreativity #creativity #craftingspace #flowers #cricut

Have you used large-scale inspiration to put together a crafting space that stimulates your creativity? Tell us about it in the comments below.

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4 Ways to Color Your Create Kindness Cards

One great thing about our Create Kindness cards is how easy it is to add your personal touch to them before giving them to others in a personal way. Today we want to inspire you with even more ways to color these cards that you may not have thought about before.

4 ways to color in stamps! #ctmh #closetomyheart #stamping #coloring #ctmhcreatekindness #createkindness1. Watercolor Pencils

You can use our watercolor pencils wet or dry to color in these cards. If you use them dry, they work like colored pencils. If you want to use them wet, you can do it two ways: Either get the tips of the pencils wet or use a waterbrush to blend the colors afterward.

4 ways to color in stamps! #ctmh #closetomyheart #stamping #coloring #ctmhcreatekindness #createkindness2. Watercolor Paints

Watercolor paints are another great way to color these stamps. The circles that come in the kit are regular cardstock, not watercolor paper, so just make sure you use more paint than water if you choose this route. Our waterbrushes make this easier. You also might find that you’ll need a bit more adhesive to attach the circles this way.

4 ways to color in stamps! #ctmh #closetomyheart #stamping #coloring #ctmhcreatekindness #createkindness3. Monochromatic

Here we used our ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ alcohol markers to color in the cards so they match the card bases. Going monochromatic gives the cards a unique look!

4 ways to color in stamps! #ctmh #closetomyheart #stamping #coloring #ctmhcreatekindness #createkindness

4. Sparkles & Shimmer

Jazz up your cards with our bitty sparkles and shimmer brush. Bitty sparkles are just the thing to up the drama on these bitty cards! And if you’ve never used the shimmer brush before, it’s a lot of fun! Follow these steps to get started:

  • Remove the neon clip, twist the lid on, and squeeze the pen while brushing onto a scrap piece of paper.
  • Once you get the amount of shimmer on your brush that you like, start brushing over your flowers!
  • Since the shimmer brush tends to smear watercolor pencils or paints, be sure to color your stamped images using markers.

4 ways to color in stamps! #ctmh #closetomyheart #stamping #coloring #ctmhcreatekindness #createkindness

There’s only one week left to purchase the Create Kindness card kit (or more card bases if you already have the stamps), so hurry and get yours today! We know you’ll love finding new ways to personalize these cards and to leave them for others to brighten their day.

Happy coloring!

Recipes

3″ x 3″ Watercolor Pencils Cards
CC1145 Create Kindness Card Kit, 3505 Watercolor PencilsZ3224 Waterbrush—Small Round

3″ x 3″ Watercolor Paint Cards
CC1145 Create Kindness Card Kit, Z3132 Watercolor Paints, Z3226 Waterbrush—Medium Flat, Z3224 Waterbrush—Small Round

3″ x 3″ Monochromatic Cards
CC1145 Create Kindness Card Kit, Z2450 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Cherry Pink Marker, Z2464 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Tender Pink Marker, Z2462 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peony Purple Marker, Z2459 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Pastel Green Marker, Z2454 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Leaf Green Marker, Z2466 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Vivid Green Marker, Z2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green Marker, Z2453 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Lavender Marker, Z2458 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Marine Blue Marker, Z2449 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Cerulean Blue Light Marker, Z2465 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Turquoise Blue Marker, Z2461 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peacock Green Marker

3″ x 3″ Sparkles & Shimmer Cards
CC1145 Create Kindness Card Kit, Z2457 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Marigold Marker, Z2452 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Golden Yellow MarkerZ2466 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Vivid Green MarkerZ2453 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Lavender MarkerZ2465 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Turquoise Blue MarkerZ2461 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peacock Green MarkerZ2450 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Cherry Pink Marker, Z2456 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Mahogany MarkerZ2463 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Sap Green MarkerZ2464 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Tender Pink MarkerZ2455 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Light Orange MarkerZ2462 ShinHan™ Touch Twin™ Peony Purple Marker, Z3293 Shimmer Brush—Clear, Z1263 Bitty Sparkles
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31 People Who Could Use a Few Kind Words Today

31 people who could use a few kind words today #closetomyheart #ctmh #createkindness #actsofkindness #cardmaking

Cards are about so much more than words inside pretty paper. They are a way to brighten someone’s day, to show you appreciate the way in which someone has touched your life, to acknowledge what someone does to make the world a better place. That’s what our Create Kindness card kit is all about—using cards to spread kindness, especially to those who may not expect it!

Here are some people that you may not normally think to give a card to but who would certainly appreciate some words of encouragement or an unexpected “thank you”:

  • Mailman
  • Barista
  • Babysitter
  • Housecleaner
  • Principal
  • Child’s school teacher
  • Your old school teacher
  • Church leader
  • Janitor
  • Police Officer
  • Fireman
  • Carpool driver
  • Crossing guard
  • Bus driver
  • Cab driver
  • Pilot
  • Hotel housekeeper
  • Nursing home patient
  • Restaurant server
  • Old high school friend
  • Nurse
  • Hair stylist
  • New mother
  • Soldier
  • Veteran
  • Cashier
  • Widow or widower
  • Former roommate
  • Gym instructor
  • Childhood friend
  • Coach

Take a moment TODAY and leave a card for someone on this list. Who knows, you could be exactly what they need to get through a rough day.

31 people who could use a few kind words today #closetomyheart #ctmh #createkindness #actsofkindness #cardmaking

Who else would you add to this list? Tell us in the comments below!

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