Saturday, August 25, 2012

“Shore” Enjoyed the Beach! – Gulf Shores, AL 2012

For quite a while, my dad has been renting condos or a beach house in the Gulf Shores/Perdido Key area for the extended family to enjoy.  I love this area…the beach is big and clean, the waves are great, and the rentals are nice.  We are big game players in my family, and I managed to play all my favorites at least once with various family members: Mexican Train Game dominoes, Racko, Skipbo, Wii bowling, Wii Pictionary, Jenga, and Backgammon.  We even did a Murder Mystery game one afternoon.  My big brother and I swam in the ocean every evening when the sun got lower.  I just had to bring my Stampin’ Up! beach towel!  Every year we get some cool logo items we can buy.  I’ve had this towel for at least a couple of years.

There were more than the usual nests of loggerhead turtles this season.  One was bound to hatch the week we were there, and sure enough it did!  The volunteers dig a trench for the turtles to travel to the waves from the beach nest.  It’s a long trek for a little turtle.  There was even a fox on the beach waiting, but he left because we were there lining the trench.  The turtles get confused by the lights on the houses, so the volunteers use red flashlights to lead them to the water.  I was honored when one of the volunteers asked me to take over her flashlight to lead the turtles.  She needed both hands to turn around the confused ones heading back to the nest.  I got to control the flashlight for quite some time and wound up crawling along the path leading what was left of the 118 baby loggerheads to the waves awaiting them.  I saw it through start to finish which was about 90 minutes long.  They journey to feeding grounds with lots of floating seaweed before returning as adults to lay eggs of their own.  Here’s the trench the next morning.

The beach house was big and every bedroom had its own attached bathroom!  The fenced private pool made all the kids happy…but  I prefer the ocean.  Here’s a photo of the house and a photo of me and my daughter on the balcony.   We’ll be back next year according to my dad!  Yay!

Notice the “Stampin’ Up!” logo on my sleeve…I wasn’t even trying to get that in the photo…happy co-inky-dink!

Friday, August 24, 2012

August Stamp Night Projects – Double Embossing, Gingerbread Man, & Brayered Landscapes Technique

Vacation was a blast.  I’ll post a couple of beach pictures soon.  Here are the projects I did for August Stamp Nights.

Here’s the first project.  This is double embossed using the isolated embossing technique.  Emboss background first, and then emboss the Designer Frames rectangle frame using one plate on top, fully closed platform, shim(s), and cardboard cutout of frame to isolate just that portion!   {TIP:  Try different thicknesses of shims and cardboard pieces until you match up the right pressure to avoid de-bossing your embossed background.  I save the cardboard backings that come with the dies to use as shims later.}

I also try to walk it through with my fingers on top of the little frame to keep the top plate from see-sawing while going through.

The second project is based on a card I saw on our shared demonstrator site.  I changed the background and inverted the Perfect Polka Dots folder to make it look like a graham cracker.  {TIP:  With this larger ribbon wrapped around, you’ll want to use more aggressive tape to be sure your background cardstock stays stuck down.  The thicker ribbon puts more pressure on the cardstock and will lift up your mat if not secured well.}

The third project is a 6x6 Halloween themed scrapbook page with a card option for my non-scrapbookers.  The Howlstooth & Scaringbone designer series paper is from the Holiday Catalog.  The stamp set is Toxic Treats.  I demonstrated brayering landscapes for the cemetery.  {TIP:  When brayering, ink the brayer in the middle of the ink pad, start rolling before you get to your paper, and lift up at the end of the stroke.  Use light colors first and wash your roller if moving to a vastly different color to avoid messing up your inks.}

Here’s the photo of the monthly page for our Stamp Night Technique Journal, Brayered Landscapes.  I used Cajun Craze, Rich Razzleberry, Pumpkin Pie, and Always Artichoke.  {TIP:  For brayered mountains, use ripped scrap moved around for different peaks at each distance.  Do foreground mountains first at full strength color then don’t re-ink for lighter and lighter mountains farther away.}

I really like how my sample came out that I demonstrated in the Tuesday Stamp Night…wish it was on cardstock instead of a post it note!

Getting ready for my 2nd Christmas/Holiday Card Stamp-a-Stack this Sunday!  Woo Hoo!  I’ll have all my holiday cards done in no time.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Join my SCRAPBOOK CLUB {Barbara’s Crop Circle} - Complete 20 Pages in 4 Months! 

Need some help with your Scrapbooking?  Want to catch up on some pages? Want to try it but don't know where to start?  Why not join Barbara’s Crop Circle!

This is a 4 month Club.  You can join for a fixed $25 per month or minimum order of $30 per month!  I will be designing all of the pages.  Each month you will get two double page spreads and a single page…that’s 5 pages a month or 20 pages in 4 months!!!  Let me know ahead of time if you are a 12x12 or an 8x8 scrapbooker.

Barbara’s Crop Circle will meet on the following 3rd Thursdays at 7PM:

SEP 20th

OCT 18th

NOV 15th

DEC 20th

Crop price $25 per session or minimum order of $30.

Please RSVP to reserve your spot in the club by September 1st so I can order the supplies!!
NOTE:  ALL titles on pages will be flexible.

Long-distance?  No problem.  Contact me to calculate postage to have a kit shipped to your location!

Happy Scrappin’

Monday, August 6, 2012

My Digital Studio – MDS2 is Here and 31% off 31 MDS Products & Printing!

For the 31 days of August, Stampin’ Up! is giving 31% off 31 My Digital Studio items (30 downloads plus 1 content disc) plus, printing is 31% off too (except bulk).  Read more about MDS2, the on sale items, and downloading the free 30 day trial software on my Promotions link and Shop Now link to the right.

If you have the software, now’s a good time to upgrade to MDS2.  The upgrade is downloadable and just $19.95 for 75 new features and improvements.  You’ll want to use the newest version for all your gift projects this season.
Also, I’m having a free MDS2 class at my house on Sunday, September 23rd at 2pm.  Bring your laptop loaded with the free trial version or if you already have MDS, download the upgrade from my website and come learn what’s new.
Here’s the list of the 65 new features available now:
  1. LAYERS PALETTE: Quickly manipulate and edit project layers
  2. EDIT OBJECTS OFF-CANVAS: Rotate, resize, and manipulate items that extend beyond the 
  3. UNLOCK INDIVIDUAL OBJECTS: Right-click object to unlock
  4. CUSTOMIZABLE COLOR PALETTE: Organize colors swatches to create a customized Color 
  5. WATERMARK OPTION: Change the color to white and opacity to 10% with just one click
  6. SUGGESTED COLOR COMBOS: See expertly coordinated color combo ideas in the Color 
  7. DESIGN IN SPREADS: Design on two pages, side-by-side
  8. FULL WRAP COVER: Design photobook front/back covers and spine at the same time
  9. CUSTOM CANVAS SIZE: Create a project in any size up to 24" x 24"
  10. CROP STAMPS: Show off part of the stamp image and hide the rest
  11. CROP EMBELLISHMENTS: Show off part of the embellishment and hide the rest
  12. BRUSH TOOL: Create freehand art with different brush sizes and shapes—perfect for line art
  13. LINE TOOL: Insert and manipulate lines with curves and custom paths
  14. ERASER TOOL: Easily erase freehand brushes
  15. VECTOR STAMP BRUSH IMAGES: Resize vector stamp while keeping its image crisp
  16. GLOBAL SEARCH: Simultaneously search for all content types
  17. FILL PUNCH WITH PHOTO: Easily add a photo to any punch shape
  18. FILL PUNCH WITH CARD STOCK: Add card stock (and textured card stock) to punches
  19. CUSTOM GROUPS: Save custom created groups to import on other projects
  20. ENHANCED PAGE LAYER EDITING: Resize Designer Series Paper on the canvas and 
maintain pattern
  21. SMART OBJECT ALIGNMENT: Align objects with mat consideration
  22. CHANGE PUNCH SHAPE: Change punch to another punch shape and maintain filled pattern
  23. EDIT OBJECT SHORTCUT KEY: Edit objects with a shortcut: CMD/CTRL+
  24. ROUND PAPER CORNERS: Round any corner of Designer Series Paper and card stock
  25. ROUND PHOTO CORNERS: Round any corner of a photo
  26. PHOTO FILL GROUPED BOXES: Group photo boxes and fill with one photo
  27. INTUITIVE iPHOTO INTEGRATION: Access and use photos on a Mac more easily
  28. PROJECT SIZE CONVERSION: Easily change any project to a different size
  29. RECOLOR EMBELLISHMENTS: Monochromatically change the color of an embellishment
  30. RECOLOR DESIGNER SERIES PAPER: Monochromatically change the color of layered 
Designer Series Paper
  31. MIRROR/FLIP GROUPS: Reverse and flip a set of grouped objects
  32. MIRROR DESIGNER SERIES PAPER: Mirror and flip backgrounds and layered Designer 
Series Paper
  33. DIGITAL STITCHING: Add stitched line—choose from several stitching styles
  34. SUPPLY LIST: View a list of items used on a page
  35. SMART GUIDES: Drag guides from the ruler to your project for perfect alignment
  36. EXPORT TO PDF: Save your project as a PDF file
  37. EXPORT TO PNG: Save your project as a PNG file
  38. EXPORT TO SVG: Save your project as an SVG file for use with an e-cutter
  39. TEXT IN COLUMNS: Type text in columns
  40. TEXT TRACKING: Increase/decrease the horizontal space between letters
  41. TEXT SHAPES: Add text to any punch shape
  42. TEXT ON A PATH: Add text to any line style to create your own curvy verses
  43. MIRROR TEXT: Choose a mirror text option for use on iron-on transfers

  44. OPEN FONT TEXT: Enjoy open type font capabilities

  45. TEXT JUSTIFICATION: Justify text left, center, right AND top, middle, bottom
  46. FONT SEARCH: Find a font by typing the first few letters
  47. CHANGE TEXT CASE: Quickly change text to upper or lower-case

  48. CHANGE ALL TEXT IN PROJECT: Apply font settings to all text in a project

  49. DESIGNER TEMPLATE SELECTION: Browse all designer templates in one location
  50. ENHANCED PROFESSIONAL PRINT: Choose and preview all print options within the software

  51. 51. ENHANCED SAVE PHOTO LAYOUT: See mats, shadows, and punches in saved photo layouts
  52. BACKGROUND PHOTO: Quickly add a photo as a background

  53. ADD MULTIPLE ITEMS: Simultaneously add multiple elements from the Design Center

  54. CALENDAR EFFECTS: Apply settings to all Design Center calendars in a project

  55. CHANGE LAYER OF SELECTED OBJECTS: Move multiple selected objects forward and backward without grouping

  56. RECOLOR PHOTO: Monochromatically change the color of a photo

  57. STAMP IMAGE COLORING: Add more than one color to a single stamp image

  58. EXPORT PROCESS: See all export options on one screen for a simplified experience

  59. ENHANCED PHOTO DRAG & DROP: Drag and drop a photo onto a photo box in any layer
  60. BATCH PHOTO EFFECTS: Apply photo effects on selected pages

  61. DELETE PROJECT PREVIEW: Show project preview before you hit delete

  62. USER INTERFACE UPDATE: Enjoy a sleek new look and feel–easy on the eyes

  63. DEFAULT BLEED AREA: Use bleed area defaults that are specific to project type

  64. ZOOM TOOL SHORTCUTS: Get to the zoom tool with a shortcut

  65. SPLATTER TOOL: Add splatters of color in different sizes
Coming Soon: When these 10 additional free features are good to go, Stampin’ Up! will let you know on so you can update your software (Help>Check for Updates).
  1. INTUITIVE PRINT FROM HOME: Print from home more easily
  2. QUICK PRINT TEMPLATES: Print from home "quick print" templates
  3. CROP PUNCHES: Show off part of the punch and hide the rest
  4. CROP ON EXPORT: Save a cropped portion of a project
  5. POP-UP INSTRUCTIONS: Get pop-up instructions for specialized templates
  6. PAPER RIP OPTION: Create torn edges with Designer Series Paper and card stock
  7. ENHANCED THUMBNAILS: Enjoy improved thumbnail images in the Resource Palette 
  8. PHOTO ROTATION: Rotate your photos within the “Crop Photo” tool
  9. ARTWORK ORGANIZATION: Customize artwork organization in the Design Center
  10. IMPORT FROM OTHER PROJECT: Toggle between projects to import elements onto current 
Wow!  Long list but so cool…I’m downloading my upgrade this week to start playing with it so I’m ready to show everyone in my class at the end of September.