We are continuing our National Stamping Month celebrations today by using our innovative, animated stamp sets in scrapbook layouts!
Before we show you those, we hope some of you joined us over the weekend when we went live on our Facebook page in celebration of National Stamping Day! We had a great time spending the day crafting together, making animated cards specially designed for the free event, as well as sharing stamping techniques from our very own stamping experts!
Each of the techniques in the charts below were demonstrated on camera using the exclusive National Stamping Day stamp set, You Brighten My Day, for you to follow along and add them to your personal stamping arsenal!
If you missed the live party, you are in luck! Watch the free replay by clicking on the link, here. Learn more about Close To My Heart, spend some time crafting with us, and pick up a few techniques along the way—all at your own speed!
Now, how about those scrapbook layouts we promised?!
Similarly, in this second 6″ x 6″ layout, we paired the Bright Stack papers with the Animated Butterfly Kisses stamp set. We created a sense of cohesiveness throughout the layout by making our animated window a square to match the square photos on the opposite page, used the same patterned paper for the borders along the window and the photos, and printed the photos in black and white to match the black and white animation.
You’ll notice that both of these layouts were photographed outside of their Memory Protectors™. If you want to access the animation, or other interactive elements, of the pages without pulling them out of their protectors every time, you will need to have a plan before you assemble them.
One approach for access to the interactive parts is to attach these pieces to the outside of the Memory Protectors™. It’s fairly simple. If you’d prefer to keep everything tucked inside the protectors, however, there are a couple of other options.
Another way for access to the moving parts of an animated page, is the use of a craft knife. With your page in the protector, figure out where you would need to pull the tab from. Make two small marks on the protector where the top and the bottom of the slit will be, and remove your page. Then, put a few pieces of scratch cardstock under where these two marks will connect. Using a ruler, connect the marks with the craft knife to cut the slit. Remove the scratch cardstock and put your page back inside the protector, now with a slit. Pull the tab through the slit and have it rest on the outside of the protector, with the rest of the interactive element still inside. When you’re ready to animate the window or pull a journaling tab, then pull the tab through the slit.
This last idea comes from one of our viewers of our National Stamping Day! She used our Flip Flaps™ Memory Protectors™ and combined both of our ideas. She attached the interactive elements to the outside of the page while keeping them safely tucked inside a small attachable pocket-size protector!
We are purposefully showing you these stamp sets used in 6″ x 6″ layouts, not because you can’t create something amazing and fun in a larger format, but because we have some new 6″ x 6″ album options that we didn’t get to mention in our last post, A Look Inside the New Annual Core Catalog!
New to the Everyday Life™ line is this gorgeous Scarlet 6″ x 6″ album, featuring an o-ring closure and a soft, faux-leather cover. Also new this year, available for the first time as individual items, are the bright and beautiful Story by Stacy™ 6″ x 6″ albums!
We hope you are enjoying your September and really taking advantage of all the craftiness we have to offer now and through the end of the month! We’d love to hear what you’re up to in your craft rooms, so please leave us a message below!
As we continue to celebrate National Scrapbooking month with beautiful creations using our featured Blue Skies collection, we thought it would simply make sense to also give you a free scrapbooking pattern to go with it!
Making its original debut in the Magic Moments workshop guide years ago, we paired this timeless 12″ x 12″ pattern with our beautiful Blue Skies papers, stamp sets, and Thin Cuts dies that are available now and through the end of May.
The instructions available as a free download below have been slightly revamped so they can be used for any occasion with the right combination of papers, accents, and a little creativity!
As usual, we encourage you to make this, and any, pattern your own by being flexible with its parts. Take a close look at our completed layout for some examples.
Both our journaling and title on the left page are in the general area of where they aught to be, based off of the pattern. However, we allowed ourselves some creative flexibility by not making these exact rectangles and added some details to really make them stand out.
We stamped our title using the Beautiful Day stamp set paired with our rock & roll stamping technique. To achieve this colorful effect, you have to slightly overlap and blend one ink color, or color hue, with another. First, ink your stamp in a base color. In order to add another color to the outer edges, you gently roll your already inked stamp in the second color. Only make contact with the stamp pad on the edges where you want to add the color. You have to rock and roll your block to achieve this look. (In our case, we rolled the top and bottom of our stamp in two different colors for an even more vibrant look.)
In our example layout, you can also see that we added several bright accents throughout, using the Thin Cuts from the Blue Skies collection, livening up the artwork even further.
Another way you can make these patterns uniquely yours is by creating your own patterned paper. The pattern you see above, and that we used on both sides of our layout, we created by repeatedly stamping the border from the Blue Skies stamp set onto cardstock. It really can be that simple!
At Close To My Heart, we take pride in providing the most comprehensive patterns for scrapbook layouts. When you download this pattern, you will notice that it also comes with cutting diagrams to make it that much easier to create these pages!
Download this free scrapbooking pattern below and have a wonderful National Scrapbooking Month full of Blue Skies and memories worth preserving!
For even more scrapbook patterns, check out our Make It from Your Heart™pattern book series. If you love the free patterns on the blog, you’re sure to be blown away by all the patterns offered in our beautiful how-to books!
As part of our National Stamping Month celebration, we have two exclusive stamp sets that are only available through the end of the month, the My Acrylix® A Dash of Joy and My Acrylix® Giving Thanks. Both have over 30 individual stamps each. They are super cute, on trend, and just right for the upcoming fall and Christmas seasons. You may have noticed that most of the individual stamps within each set are also really small.
To get us all thinking outside of a one-inch square that most of these loveable little icons and sentiments were designed to fit into, we have a few simple ideas that showcase just how versatile a small stamp can be by also effectively being used in much bigger spaces.
First, let’s talk about backgrounds. This one seems to be a pretty common idea that we tend to easily forget. Take a look at how we used our small stamps to create the following three pieces of artwork:
On this So Thankful page we wanted to create a partial background. You can do this with sentiments, like we did here, or with clusters of small icons down the center, off-center, down one side of the page, or even just in a corner.
This card is an example of how to use small sentiments to create a full background. Turn the sentiment at an angle and stamp it over and over again until your background is completely covered. The trick is to start by stamping partially off your base to achieve the cutoff look.
Another way to use small icons in large spaces is in borders.
Combining three of the leaf stamps from the Giving Thanks set with two green stamp pads we were able to create this beautiful fall scene for the memories on this page.
This last idea, one of our favorites that really gets you thinking outside the norm, is to create your own shapes out of smaller ones.
The gorgeous wreath on this page was created using several of the small stamps from the A Dash of Joy set and nothing else.
We kept it simple by making a circle to illustrate the idea, but the truth is you can create many other shapes and designs using small stamps—a tree, a snowman, a pumpkin, a star, a house—whatever you dare try.
With the right combination of stamps and inks, the possibilities are endless.
We really do love these little sentiments and icons and want everyone to have a chance to create with them, too. In the next 24 hours, we will be giving away 5 Share the Seasons Stamp Set Bundles, which include one My Acrylix® A Dash of Joy stamp set and one My Acrylix® Giving Thanks stamp set. If you want to be entered in the drawing, make sure you are subscribed to this blog and leave us a comment below sharing with us how you use small stamps in big ways. Winners will be chosen by 1 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 18, MST) and will be notified via email, so keep your eyes on your inboxes friends!
Can’t wait to hear from you!
***THIS DRAWING IS NOW CLOSED. THANK YOU TO ALL WHO PARTICIPATED! <3 ***
It is officially National Stamping Month! Is anyone else as pumped about this time of year as we are? A little bit of history, for our friends who haven’t been with us for very long, Close To My Heart was originally called D.O.T.S. (Dozens of Terrific Stamps). Our first love was, and continues to be, stamps! We’ve come a long way since 1984 and wood mounted rubber stamp sets, and yet there are still some things that will never change.
Today we are going back to the basics of stamping, showing a few different ways we can use stamps in our projects. If you are new to stamping, this is a great place to start and learn just how versatile these creative tools can be. If you are a “pro,” then follow along anyway and remind yourself why you, too, love stamping and the versatility behind each design.
First, let’s talk about stamping on photos.
This is such an easy way to create personalized cards or add some additional touches to your scrapbook pages.
Stamping directly on a photo might seem a little scary at first, but we promise, it will be okay! For this project, we used the Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ stamp pad to stamp our sentiment. We opted for this ink choice because we used a matte photo. If you’re stamping on a glossy photo, consider using Black StazOn™ ink. StazOn™ ink is specifically formulated for use on non-porous surfaces, allowing you to confidently stamp on any photo.
Next, let’s revisit an oldie, but a goodie, technique—generational stamping. Generational stamping is a fairly simple stamping technique. Think of it as the “double-dip” action (or in this case, the “triple-dip”) of the stamping world. With generational stamping, you don’t re-ink your stamp before stamping the image or sentiment again. This leaves you with a slightly faded image that is otherwise identical to the first one.
For this example, we used the Candy Apple Exclusive Inks™ stamp pad to create a fun generational stamping effect. First, you thoroughly saturate your stamp with ink, and then press down firmly to transfer the image onto your paper. Then, without re-inking the stamp, press it to the paper again to create a second-generation stamped image or, like in this case, sentiment. In this example, we went a step farther and created a third-generation sentiment, which was accomplished the same way.
You can clearly see the second and third generational stamps. This effect, combined with the fun patterns in the Every Little Thing paper packet, makes for a beautiful card with a unique flair.
Another fun way to use your stamps is to fussy cut! Fussy cutting simply means that you cut out your stamped image by hand rather than using a metal die or a paper cutting machine. This lets you cut right down to the edges of the image for a crisp, clean cut. When you don’t have just the right sticker or are looking for a quick way to add dimension, fussy cut your stamped image or sentiment and attach it with some foam tape!
In our next example, we’ve got several different ideas that neatly come together in one beautiful 6″ x 8″ layout.
First, take a close look at the peach portion of the layout, in the lower right-hand corner of the left page. That’s not pattern paper—the pattern you see is achieved by continuous, random stamping. Stamps give you the ability to create your own unique patterns, adding a personal element to all of your projects.
Next, let’s talk about how to stamp white on black. For this, we’ll be breaking out our heat tool and embossing powder!
As you can see, this particular element has a dimensional appearance. Well, that’s thanks to the use of embossing powder!
The images in this example are stamped with VersaMark™ ink and heat embossed with white embossing powder. Stamp with VersaMark™ ink, add embossing powder, melt and seal together with a heat tool.
Did you know that you can also heat emboss with our pigment inks of our exclusive colors? All you need is the pigment ink in the color of your choice and clear embossing powder. Heat and seal like you would with the VersaMark™ ink, and that’s it!
If you want to heat emboss on vellum, there are a few small tricks to consider.
For this technique, allow your heat tool to heat up before you use it. Once it’s hot, blow on the ink intermittently from behind the paper (which means you would need to do this step before attaching a piece like this to your project). If you blow directly onto the ink and vellum without pulling the heater away, the ink will move and the paper will warp. Another approach, if from behind is too difficult, is to move the heat tool in slow circles over the stamped area.
The last three examples of artwork we have showcase how to add color to your stamped images.
In a recent blog post, we discussed different types of black ink and which ones work best with certain types of projects. For this card, we used the Intense Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad to stamp the pumpkins so that we could add color with our new TriBlend™ markers.
Once you’ve got your image stamped, take your TriBlend™ Marker and color around the outer edges of the stamped image using one of the darker shades. Then, color in the center with one of the lighter shades.
Using TriBlend™ Markers to color in your stamped images allows you to color with confidence, since the shades are already matched for you, and as you can see, they deliver beautiful results!
For this card, you’ll want to grab your watercolor pencils. To avoid getting harsh lines in your project, move your pencil in gentle, circular strokes, or use a lighter hand as you color; think of it as light shading as opposed to coloring in your stamp.
Once you’ve got your stamped image colored in, you can leave it as is for a slightly more rustic, rough feel, like in our example, or blend with a waterbrush.
Our last example is a bit deceptive, and it looks a bit more complicated than it actually is.
To create the beautiful, multicolored effect happening in the leaves of this page, we used a technique is called rock & roll.
First, you thoroughly ink your stamp in the base color of your choice. Then, gently rock and roll the edges of your stamp in your secondary color. It’s that easy. Your stamp is ready to leave a gorgeous impression!
No matter how you use them, you can’t go wrong with great stamps! Happy stamping!
We pride ourselves on our “Let Me Show You How” philosophy. That is one of the reasons we love providing free, downloadable patterns, whether that is right here, on this blog, or on Closetomyheart.com.
Whenever we offer a workshop kit for sale, the instructions are available as a free downloadable PDF file right on our website. These instructions come fully equipped with additional materials needed lists, cutting guides, featured techniques, step-by-step assembly instructions, project photos, tips, AND patterns. Without any obligations or commitments, you can visit our site, find these workshops, download the files, and use the patterns in them at your discretion.
Even though these timeless patterns are designed with specific products in mind, we stand behind their versatility and encourage you to use them time and time again. With different papers, embellishments, and subjects matters, the finished results will always be unique.
THE WORLD IS YOURS:(You can download the instructions and patterns for these layouts here, or on our website here.)
In each of our seasonal catalogs, you will find one scrapbooking and one cardmaking workshop for every paper collection offered. The scrapbooking workshops walk you through creating three coordinating 2-page layouts while the cardmaking workshops come with several card designs and patterns to make anywhere between 12 and 16 cards. Outside the catalogs, we also have regular monthly specials. Often, these promotions will include a workshop—this is where you will find instructions and patterns for other things as well, like mini albums and the occasional papercrafting project.
If you’re ever looking for a pattern, revisit some of your old workshops or come and visit us here or on our website. Remember, the patterns on our site are only available while the workshop kits they are featured in are, so make sure to grab them while you can!
We are loving National Scrapbooking Month so far, and we hope you are, too! To continue the celebration, we’re going to really shake things up today and show you how to make a shaker window the size of a scrapbook page!
STEP 1. The very first thing you’re going to do is determine the size of window you’d like on your project. For it to fit a traditional 12″ x 12″ scrapbook page, you’ll need to keep your window no bigger than 11½” x 11½”. Next, decide if you’d like the base of the window (the paper that shows through under the sequins) to be the same as your base page or if you’d rather have a different pattern or color show through. If you’re keeping it the same as the base page, skip the rest of this step and move on to number 2. If you’d like the base to be something different, cut a circle* from the patterned paper or cardstock you’d prefer instead. The size and shape you cut here will determine the size and shape of your window. The window on our page is a 10″ circle, so our base is also 10″
*One of the great things about this big window idea is that you’re not limited to a circle shape. Make a square, a rectangle, a heart, a star—your window can be any shape you can cut out from a 12″ x 12″ Memory Protector™. (See step 2.)
STEP 2. Carefully trim the edges from a 12″ x 12″ Memory Protector™; this should leave you with two clear plastic sheets. Take one of these pieces and cut another circle (or the shape you chose for your window) from it. Make sure this second shape is the same size as your base piece, if you have one.
STEP 3. The last thing you will need to cut to create your large window is an overlay. When you cut your overlay, make sure that it is the same size as your other two pieces so they will all match up later when you stack them to assemble your window. On our page, we created an overlay that frames our shape and also has a world map in the center (making our complete project look like a globe). Your overlay doesn’t have to be this complicated. Decide how much of the inside window you really need or want to see. Also take into consideration where you will be putting other elements of your scrapbook page, like photos and journaling.
STEP 4. When you’ve got all your pieces cut, gently rub the base and the clear plastic window in circular motions with an anti-static pouch. This will help reduce static cling and allow the sequins move freely when you shake or turn the completed page.
STEP 5. Carefully place small pieces of 3-D foam tape around the perimeter of your base piece. Keeping your base flat, add a handful of loose sequins inside the frame you just created.
STEP 6. Lay the clear plastic shape on top of the 3-D foam tape and press firmly around the edges.
If you don’t have a separate base piece and are using your base page as the back of your window, add the 3-D foam tape to the perimeter of the plastic shape instead. Then, fill the center of your framed plastic shape with sequins and lay the base page on top of it to attach. Flip the page over to see your window.
STEP 7. The last step in assembling this large window is to hide the foam frame by layering the overlay on top of it. (An adhesive runner should do the trick!)
Now that your window is complete, all that is left to do is to attach it to your project along with all of those extra elements that make a scrapbook page truly yours.
Happy May everyone, and happy National Scrapbooking Month!! We just love, love, love, this time of year where we get to join with the rest of the crafting community to celebrate the meaningful art of scrapbooking—and in true Close To My Heart fashion, we are celebrating all month long with beautiful new products created just for the occasion! If you didn’t get a chance to see some of our dearest friends talk about the exclusive The World Is Yours collection on National Scrapbooking Day this last Saturday, revisit the video HERE.
One of our favorite products from The World Is Yours collection is the Cut Above® layout kit. A primary excuse people give for not scrapbooking is that they just don’t have the time to do it. Cut Above® layout kits are our answer to that genuine concern without jeopardizing artwork quality. Each one of our Cut Above® layout kits come with pre-printed base pages, pre-cut paper pieces and die-cuts, as well as stickers to quickly and easily assemble two 12″ x 12″ scrapbook layouts. We basically take all of the cutting out of the scrapbooking equation, allowing you to jump right into enjoying the artistic and creative side of memory keeping.
The World Is Yours Cut Above® layout kit is additionally unique because it is one of the only Cut Above® layout kits that can be purchase out right outside of our Craft with Heart™ subscription program. Craft with Heart™ offers Cut Above® layout kits at monthly, 4-month, and 12-month intervals. Once subscribed, you receive exclusive kits delivered straight to your doorstep. If you are not yet a subscriber, The World Is Yours kit is a great place to try one of these kits out without any further obligations.
We truly love our Cut Above® layout kits so much and are confident that you will, too, which is why we are giving away five of these kits to five lucky readers! We keep it simple. For a chance to win, all you have to do is make sure you are subscribed to this blog and then leave us a comment below, letting us know your thoughts on the Cut Above® program. You have until 11 a.m. on Thursday, May 9 (MDT), to enter. All winners will be notified by e-mail.
For a closer look at all of our other beautiful products and projects offered through The World Is Yours special, visit our website, HERE. Remember, this collection is only available during May, while supplies last, so get yours today and make the world yours!
And so National Scrapbooking Month continues! We’re back again with another celebratory project made with the Taste of Summer paper packet and stamp set: a refreshing Taste of Summer mini album.
Mini albums are great for compiling your memories from specific events or time periods in a beautiful standalone book, which friends and family can then look through as it sits on your coffee table to get a taste of what you experienced.
Because you control the page count and the binding, you have the flexibility to add as many pages as you wish. You decide how much time you put into a single page; you can highly embellish, or, if you prefer, keep the additions to a minimum. Every page ends up unique, and each retains a piece of the memory that you want to portray.
Use the Taste of Summer papers and stamps to create one of your own to capture your day on the lake, your trip to the mountains, or your picnic at the park.
If you’re feeling a little dry on ideas, let us splash a few your way:
• Using the Cricut® Artbooking cartridge, cut pages of all sizes and with varied borders. Mini albums are one of the projects this cartridge was specifically designed to cut, so you’re sure to find everything you need.
• Get spunky with your binding. We chose Thistle extra thick twine to bring out the pretty purples in our papers.
• Arrange blocks of papers, photos, and stamps in symmetrical patterns to harness the power of excellent design.
• Write short and sweet captions for your photos, but leave room for longer journaling entries as well.
• Create embellishments with the already adorable paper. Here we’ve dovetailed strips of paper and layered them to make a juicy cluster.
• Layer images from the stamp set using 3-D foam tape.
• Give your handwritten memories the limelight! Layer blocks of paper and cardstock and fill them up with journaling.
• Use mini staples for your mini album—it’s like they were made for each other!
• Get creative with your inking. The strawberries on this page were stamped in several colors to achieve a look that’s almost good enough to eat.
• Stamp directly onto your photos to capitalize on space—and give them fun captions!
• Use journaling strips to allow the gorgeous Taste of Summer papers to peek through.
• Layer stamped sentiments on top of stamped images in complementary colors.
• Add embellishments for dimensional pops of color. Here we’ve used purple glitter gems to coordinate with the colors of the papers.
• Stamp images to create designs on solid-color cardstock. In this case, the stamped vines are more of an attraction than the paper!
• Place journaling strips vertically for a new look.
Your mini Taste of Summer project is sure to have a big impact. Remember to grab your paper packet and stamp set before the month’s end!
5 ½” Sweet Summer Mini Album
E1028 My Acrylix® Hopscotch Alphabet, CC1039 My Acrylix® Taste of Summer, CC1038 Taste of Summer Paper Packet, 1385 White Daisy Cardstock, X5769 Thistle Cardstock, X5772 Canary Cardstock, Z2105 Black Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2155 Topiary Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2190 Gypsy Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2640 Thistle Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z3040 Thistle Extra Thick Twine, Z1936 Purple Glitter Gems, Z1906 Cricut® Artbooking Collection, Hole Punch
Cricut® Shapes: Artbooking
5 ½” Photo Mat 1 (p. 40)
5 ½” Shift+Photo Mat 1 (p. 40)
5 ½” Photo Mat 2 (p. 40)
5 ½” Photo Mat 1 (cut 2, p. 41)
5 ½” Photo Mat 2 (cut several, p. 41)
5 ½” Shift+Photo Mat 1 (cut two, p. 51)
4 ¼” Shift+Photo Mat 1 (p. 53)
5 ½” Shift+Photo Mat 1 (p. 56)
There’s something delicious in the air, making its way toward your tantalized taste buds. What’s the dish? Your very own Taste of Summer specialty, in celebration of National Scrapbooking Month!
The Taste of Summer paper packet and stamp set are here to help you celebrate the greatest season on earth. It will be available only during May, but we guarantee you’ll be using it all summer long because it’s downright delicious.
We’ll be sharing artwork made with these lip-smacking products all month long through our social media sites, so make sure to check out our Facebook page and Instagram account every day during May. Of course, we’ll also be featuring some of our favorite pieces here on the blog—starting now!
Check out this succulent page made with the Taste of Summer papers and stamps:
It’s time to pull out your summertime photos! The juicy fruits of these papers go together like berries and cream with your summer-themed snapshots.
Add the stamp set to the paper and photos, and you won’t be able to rein in your crafting fingers! With a change of ink color, you can create a lemon, lime, or an orange, and all from the same stamp. Or split a sentiment and you’ve got dozens of possibilities for titles and photo captions.
Most delicious of all, these stamp images can look as mouthwatering as real fruit when you get creative with your inking. We stamped some very convincing strawberries by using the rock ‘n’ roll technique. First we stamped the entire base in Cotton Candy ink, then we rolled just a portion of the stamp in Cranberry and layered it on top. On the far right edge, we finished the look with a roll in Ruby.
The “JAM” title is also a mix of inks that combine to make a very berry look: Ruby and Cotton Candy.
The “yummy” sentiment we made by stamping the entire base first in Cotton Candy ink, then working our way left. We overlapped half the sentiment with Cranberry ink and added a layer of Ruby to the left end. Mmmm.
For an added touch of homegrown, we’ve woven some stitching into the page. Use your stitch guide to create the same look you see here. Don’t forget to leave room for journaling, too, because you’re going to want to document the greatest summer memories you’ve ever had.