Today we will take the imprint of a stamp that has many parts or lines to it, like a map 😉, and create a final image by piecing together a variety of papers, kind of like a mosaic. This technique is fittingly known as paper piecing. The technique is much harder to describe than it is to do, so let us show you and see for yourselves!
The first thing you’ll want to do is figure out what colors or patterns you want incorporated into your final design. In our case, with the map, we thought it would be best, because of all the details that we are not cutting out, to use four solid cardstock colors.
This next step is also easy, but maybe a bit more time consuming, depending on the image you are working with. Cut out all the shapes from each of your papers, except one. The one you do not cut into pieces will act as your base later, when you put it all back together.
When you are cutting your shapes, make sure to cut them out exactly the same between papers. For example, our cutout of California should be the same shape and size in each of our cardstock colors. Essentially, we are creating a puzzle and its puzzle pieces. The pieces need to fit together for this technique to work.
The final step is to put those puzzling skills to use and assemble the paper pieced image on your base.
As a tip, we suggest playing around with the placement of your paper pieces, first, before attaching them.
And there you have it! Another stamping technique to add to your repertoire!
How are you spending your National Stamping Month? Let us know in the comments below, and, as always, happy stamping! ❤️
National Stamping Month is here! Celebrate with us in a Slimline Celebration! With so many great deals on slimline stamps and Thin Cuts metal dies, it’s bound to be one of the biggest bashes of the year!
The Slimline Celebration special includes three exclusive stamp and Thin Cuts sets, one stamp set of just sentiments, and two exclusive Thin Cuts dies, all of which have been designed specifically for slimline cards! Let’s take a closer look at all the amazing stamps and Thin Cuts available through this Slimline Celebration!
One of the stand-out stamp and Thin Cuts sets in the Slimline Celebration is the Mini Garden Gnomes set! Some of our most popular stamp sets over the past year have been from our gnome collection, and this miniature gnome set is sure to be a fast favorite.
The last stamp set included in the Slimline Celebration special is the My Acrylix® Slimline Sentiments stamp set. This set includes twice as many stamps as a normal set would have and is comprised entirely of sentiments tailored specifically for slimline cards!
These sentiment stamps include options for both vertical and horizontal cards, and look incredible no matter where they’re placed! These stamps are perfect for card fronts and interiors, alike, making them a quick, easy, and versatile option as you create your own slimline cards!
As a special treat, we’re giving away five Slimline Celebration Cardmaking Workshop Kits to five lucky readers! All you have to do to qualify for this giveaway is make sure that you’re subscribed to this blog and leave a comment below telling us about your favorite part of the Slimline Celebration special, or who you’d love to give a slimline card to! You have until noon on Friday, September 3 (MST), to subscribe and leave a comment. All winners will be notified via email (the one you are subscribed with!).
If you’re looking for a quick, easy, and beautiful way to scrapbook your photos, then we’ve got just the thing to make that happen!
A little while back, we shared a speedy scrapbooking technique that we called the 3-2-1 Formula to make 10 6″ x 8″ two-page layouts. Since it’s national scrapbooking month, we decided to pair this speedy scrapbooking method with the exclusive You Are Enough collection and share with you our gorgeous results!
(Click on the individual images to enlarge.)
Now, let’s revisit the steps to making this album! As the name implies, this is a formulaic project. That means that you will follow a simple formula to cut all of your patterned paper and then assemble your layouts. As you will see, you will continue to have a lot of creative freedom to add your own flair to each of your pages. No two albums will look the same, unless you make them that way intentionally.
*If you are not familiar with Close To My Heart products, all of our cardstock and patterned papers come in a 12″ x 12″ format, and that is what we will be using to make this project.
Step 1: Creating Base Pages. The very first thing we cut are base pages, from the White Daisy cardstock. From 10 sheets, you should be able to get 20 6″ x 8″ pieces.
Step 2: Cutting Patterned Paper. Before measuring and cutting anything, trim all the zip strips from each of the patterned paper sheets. The zip strip is the extra ½” accent paper along the top of each Close To My Heart patterned paper sheet. Cut each of these in half and set them aside. Next, cut the remaining 12″ x 12″ paper in half, to 6″ x 12″. Here’s where the 3-2-1 comes into play. Cut these two half sheets of patterned paper into strips of 3″ x 6″, 2″ x 6″, and 1″ x 6″.
(Half of this example is showing what the pattern is on the back side of this sheet. Each one of our patterned papers has a double-sided coordinating design, for additional creative flexibility.)
Step 3: Creating Photo Mats from Cardstock. For a more polished look, we like to add photo mats behind most, if not all, of our photos. That is what we make with the four sheets of coordinating cardstock.
Cut each cardstock sheet into six 6″ x 4″ rectangles. You should have a total of 24 when you are done. If you’d like to have a few 3″ x 4″ mats, simply cut these in half. Please note that the photos you will be mounting on these mats will have to be trimmed down a ¼” in both height and width to fit.
Step 4: Putting It All Together. You’re going to need a bit of space for this part, so make sure to clear your table or a place on your living room rug or somewhere else you can keep your project safe. Lay out all 20 White Daisy cardstock base pages. Next, distribute the strips of patterned paper and cardstock mats. Each page should get one 4″ x 6″ photo mat, or two 3″ x 4″ mats, and one strip of each size, 3″, 2″, and 1″. If you’d like for the pages that will be facing each other in your album to match, keep that in mind as you distribute your papers. Lastly, decide how you want to attach these pieces to your pages and get to it! Move the components around until you are happy with your pages. Experiment with different arrangements and consider whether you want 3″ x 4″ or 4″ x 6″ photo mats on your layouts, or a combination of both.
Step 5: Embellish! Using coordinating embellishments, add your finishing touches!
If you like our finished album and would like to recreate it using our same papers and embellishments, make sure to get your You Are Enough papers, cardstock, and butterfly sequins while you still can! This collection is only available while supplies last and it has been flying off our shelves, fast! If you want to make an album like this using other papers and embellishments, that’s completely okay, too! The beauty of the 3-2-1 technique is that it can be used with any coordinating papers and embellishments you like.
As we begin to wrap up another National Scrapbooking month, we hope you enjoy creating scrapbook pages that you love and that best suit your photos and memories!
Our National Scrapbooking Month celebrations are in full swing around these parts, and what better way to get everyone to join in the festivities than with a free downloadable scrapbook pattern, complete with cutting diagrams and all!
Making its original debut with the Daydream Workshops On the Go®, we paired this timeless 12″ x 12″ pattern with our gorgeous You Are Enough collection!
The You Are Enough collection is a celebration of life and all of its perfect imperfections. “You are enough” does not mean that you are or have to be everything. You don’t have to be perfect, just be who you were designed and made to be. Our You Are Enough collection features beautiful stone designs with stunning rose gold accents and a gorgeous sticker sheet full of positive affirmations, enabling incredible artwork that celebrates everything that life has to offer!
Along with providing products that you will consume and not just collect, we also pride ourselves in being the “let me show you how®” memory-keeping company, and in providing the most comprehensive scrapbooking and cardmaking patterns. When you download the Daydream scrapbooking pattern, you will find that it also comes with cutting diagrams, making it even easier to create these pages from any of your favorite papers and embellishments, not just what we are showing you here. All of our patterns lend themselves to any memories that are special enough to preserve.
Download this free scrapbook pattern below and let us show you just how easy scrapbooking can be!
For even more timeless scrapbook patterns, check out our Make It from Your Heart™ pattern books! If you love the free scrapbook patterns we share on the blog, you’re sure to be blown away by the patterns and inspirational artwork in all of our how-to books.
It’s time to party, because National Scrapbooking Month is officially here! We started things off with a bang last weekend, with a two-day National Scrapbooking Day Celebration virtual event, where everyone was welcomed to follow along and create beautiful scrapbook pages, cards, and even a mini album with us! If you missed out on any of these projects and would still like to participate, the instructional segments are available under the past Events tab on the Close To My Heart (Official) Facebook page. (For example artwork photos and information about the product bundles to make these projects, visit our website, here.)
We’re thrilled to continue our National Scrapbooking Month celebrations with a new and exclusive patterned paper collection and suite of coordinating products, only available for the month of May and while supplies last. The gorgeous You Are Enough collection is built on a foundation of affirmation, encouragement, and celebration of all the beautiful qualities we admire in our loved ones and ourselves! It was inspired and designed around a gemstone concept, making it a perfect complement to treasured memories.
Start with the incredible You Are Enough paper packet, which features 12 double-sided paper sheets, two each of six double-sided designs—that’s double the number of designs and sheets than in our other paper collections!
The beautiful coordinating stickers and cardstock feature stunning rose gold foil accents and designs. (Click on the thumbnail images for a closer look!)
Increase your crafting potential with a coordinating stamp set, pocket cards, and sequins!
Use the materials in this kit to create 24 standard size cards, 2 each of 10 designs and 4 unique designs.
If you’re not quite sure where to begin, let us help you out! We are giving away FIVE You Are Enough Paper Bundles, right here, right now! That five sets of the You Are Enough Paper Packet + Sticker Sheet and the You Are Enough Coordinating cardstock! For a chance to win, you must be subscribed to this blog AND leave us a comment below letting us know what you like most about this amazing You Are Enough collection! All entries must be submitted by 4 p.m. tomorrow, May 6 (MDT). The five lucky winners will be notified via e-mail (we use the mail address you are subscribed with, so make sure it is up to date to not miss out!). (In order to subscribe, simply click here.)
We have so many exciting things lined up for this year’s National Scrapbooking Month! Keep up with all of our festivities by continuing to follow us here, as well as on Facebook and Instagram (@cmthofficial).
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!