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October 2014 Member of the Month – Kathy E. (KatieGrace)

CONGRATULATIONS! to our November 2014 Member of the Month Kathy E. (KatieGrace)!
We’re sending a big Scrap Girls Congratulations to Kathy! The Team has chosen Kathy as the Member of the Month for November! Kathy will receive a $10 gift certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique and has the honor of wearing the Member of the Month blinkie!
We thought it would be fun to get to know Kathy a bit better by asking her a few questions – thanks Kathy!

What program do you use to digital scrapbook?

I use Photoshop CC.

Are you a Mac or a PC, laptop or desktop?

I use a desktop PC.

Do you use a mouse, tablet or something else to scrap with?

I use a mouse most of the time but a tablet is indispensable for detail work.

Tell us the make and model of digital camera that you use and your favorite subject to photograph.

My camera is a Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX9V. I’ve had it for several years and it’s starting to show its age, but I’m familiar with it and it still works for me. My grandchildren are my favorite subjects.

What new photography or scrapping skill have you recently mastered or would like to master?

Well, I wouldn’t say I mastered it but I have learned to make custom shadows and that has been a lot of fun.

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A long time ago when I was a kid, girls usually felt they could be a nurse, teacher, or mom. If you were really confident and attractive you could be a stewardess. Out of that group I chose nurse. I never became one which is probably good since I used to faint at the sight of blood. My interest really was with all things artistic. I’m so glad my granddaughters know they can be anything they want to be.

What color shoes are you wearing?

No shoes, if I’m home I’m always barefoot in the summer and wearing socks in the winter.

What is your favorite season and why?

Autumn without question. First of all here in Wisconsin it is so beautiful when the leaves change color. Secondly, until 10 years ago most of the homes I lived in were not air conditioned and fall was crisp and cool and a relief from the heat of summer.

Were you named after anyone?

Yes and no. My mom named me Katherine Louise because she like the way it sounded. She didn’t know her favorite aunt, Louise, always thought I was named after her since her name was Louise Katherine. My mom didn’t know that her middle name was Katherine. She couldn’t have picked a sweeter lady to name me after though. Two of my granddaughters are named after me and it’s quite an honor.

What is your favorite part about being a Scrap Girl?

I couldn’t narrow it down to just one thing. The products are wonderful, the customer service is amazing, and the community is friendly and supportive.

Kathy’s favorite layout: The Search for the Perfect Pumkin
Supplies:
Madison County Collection Biggie
Madison County Paper Biggie 2

Behind the Scenes: Brandy Murry’s November Club!

Each month we get a glimpse behind the scenes of our Scrap Girls Club designers, and this month’s designer is Brandy Murry!

Click here to check out Brandy’s Club at a great price!

When you started working on your club, what was the first thing you did?
I always do the papers first as they become the bases for many of the other things.

What inspired the colors in your club?

Well the original colors for this collection were different in the beginning. When I showed my ideas to Angie, she told me that Jacqui’s October Club right before mine (Nip & Tuck) had the same colors, so I had to change mine up a little.

Where did you find the inspiration for this club?
I gather things that inspire me throughout the year and drop them in a folder. When I need ideas, I go back to that folder to see what jumps out at me. I thought this would be great for the autumn.

Image Credits: Botanicals-Public Domain, Black & White Save the Date: Chelsea Dyer, Alphabet: Letterology.com, Fern Purple Print: Bacon Birbon Babes/ Tumblr Journal: Kortney Collection
The club includes several products. Did you start and complete each one before moving on to the next?
Not exactly, it goes through several rounds of editing, all the way down to the layouts. If it doesn’t work with the layouts, it get replaced to redone until it fits. Sometimes the most cool looking papers get replaced because they take over photos. I always want your photos to be the focus.
What was your favorite thing to design?
I really had fun designing the Flowers & Nature paper that was inspired by a Save the Date Graphic by Chelsey Dyer. I just switched it up to go with a different concept. I added a little bit if my own touch to this by adding my niece as the name of the illustator. She’s a fantastic little artist and so amazing at 14 yrs old, I can’t wait to see what she does in a few years. Plus.. I made her a doctor…LOL. It’s really tiny so you might not notice it, but I know it’s there and it’s my little nod to how proud of her I am.

If you could pick only one word to describe your club, what would that word be?

Natural.

About how long did it take you to design this club?

I had to go back to my files to check the date of the original designs and compare it to the final marketing images. Looks like the first design was done on July 21st and the process ended on September 17th. So about 2 months.

How did you come up with the name of your club?

I wanted to make it simple so everyone would understand what it was from the name, so Botanical it become.

Layout by Brandy Murry

5 Tips for Making Layout Templates Your Own

Audience: Beginners
Category: Templates
Operating System: Windows 7
Software: Adobe Photoshop Elements 9

I have a confession: I am a rather haphazard scrapbooker. I never start with a plan beyond a few photos I know I want to use and a feeling I want to create. I generally just start sticking things on a page and moving them around until I’m happy. Layout templates (where the layout comes to you with predetermined placement of photo boxes, journaling, titles, and background) used to feel too constricting for my creative process. But recently, I find myself falling in love with them. The more I use them, the more I love them!

If you’ve ever struggled with using layout templates, I’ve got five tips to show you how to make them your own. Rather than being “predetermined” and “constricting,” Scrap Girls’ ScrapSimple Layout Templates actually have flexibility and unlimited personalization potential built right into them. Let me show you how to make it happen!

1.  Rotate the template.

Don’t just look at a template the way it shows up in the thumbnail view in your files. Look at it from all four sides. If the template has a large vertical photo mask and you have a large horizontal photo, try flipping the template on its side.

Rotating a whole template in Photoshop Elements is quick and easy. Go to Image > Rotate. This will open up a window with lots of rotating options. Remember – the top section will affect all of the layers in your layout, while the section below will only affect the layer that is currently active (highlighted) in your Layers palette.

2. Replace photo blocks with embellishments or journaling. 

Just because the template layer is named “Photo” doesn’t mean you have to have a photo there. Mix it up with a journaling tag or an embellishment. Or clip a patterned paper to one of the photo layers (instead of a photo) to add a pop of color and interest. Move elements around, resize them, or just do whatever works best for your purposes.

3. Dress up the template! 

Just because the designer didn’t include a lot of paper layering behind the photos or a layer labeled “Embellishment Cluster” doesn’t mean you can’t include one – or two – or more! Add photo frames or strokes to make the photos stand out. Be true to your style.

4. Delete layers you don’t need.

Maybe the template you chose has layers with stitching outlining the photos, but that look just doesn’t go with the mood you’re trying to create. Delete the stitching! Or maybe you want a title where there is a photo mask. Delete it!

I promise – you won’t hurt the designer’s feelings by mixing things up. Our Scrap Girls Product Designers love seeing how creative you can get with their products.

5. Don’t forget the details. 

Drop shadows and other styles can completely transform the feeling of a layout, so don’t skip them! If you use clipping masks to combine your photos with photo masks, add drop shadows to the photo mask layer, not the photo layer.

Go ahead – embrace ScrapSimple Templates! As I have discovered, they give you a creative jumpstart, and they help you get the layout moving quicker than if you start from scratch! As always, I would love to see your layouts in the Scrap Girls Gallery, so be sure to upload them!

Article written by Anna Mansfield

Alpha Inspirations

As with all of Brandy Murry’s kits, the November 2014 Scrap Girls Club, Botanical, has given us a rich variety of papers and elements with which to create our digital scrapbooking pages. I found inspiration everywhere! Here, however, are some ideas for using one part of the Botanical kit – the alphas.

Alpha 1 has an elegant look that I love. They can easily stand alone and would make wonderful monograms for notecards. Here are a couple of examples that I think would work beautifully for any occasion.

Helpful hint: Gridlines are useful in helping you to center an initial on the card. Go to Edit > Preferences > Guides and Gridlines. Choose inches (or cm) as your unit.

I like two subdivisions, especially when working on a small project such as a notecard. As you work on the card, be sure to go to View and click on both Rulers and Grid so that they will be visible.

Alpha 2 has a round shape. They look great spelling out words, but I also like using them as buttons. How about using one of them in place of a knot in the center of a bow? Or you could put an initial in the center of a flower, as I did in my sample layout.

Helpful hints: To make them look more realistic, be sure to resize them to fit the flower center or to cover the knot on the bow. When you add your drop shadows, make them a little smaller and darker than the ones you are using for the bow or flower. That will help give the impression that the button is “pressing into” the center of each.

I hope you’ll give some of these ideas a try! Show us how you use this delightful Scrap Girls Club by uploading your finished layouts to the Scrap Girls Gallery so we can admire your work!

Products Used:
Botanical Scraps Embellishment Mini
JIF Plus: Botanical
Article written by Diane Lardieri

November 16th Weekly Layout Winner & Forum Schedule

Weekly Layout Contest Winner

I Love to Sing by KayMitch

Digital scrapbooking products used:

JIF 6: Lemon Drop Drizzle

Unforgettable Collection Mini

ScrapSimple Paper Templates: Crumpled

Super 7 Spread by Laura Louie
ScrapSimple Tools – Styles: Glow Stick 10801

Congratulations Kay! You may retrieve your gift certificate by emailing prizes@scrapgirls.com.

Want a chance to win Scrap Girls’ Weekly Layout Contest?

Simply post your digital or paper layouts that use Scrap Girls products in our online Gallery; if we choose yours, you’ll win a prize! To be considered, don’t forget to list the Scrap Girls products that you used in your layout.

Want to see past winners of the Weekly Layout Contest? Visit the Weekly Layout Winners Gallery on our Forum!

NEWSLETTER CHALLENGE

11-18-14_Forum

What’s fall look like out your window? This challenge is a great opportunity to get some fall photos scrapped and also push yourself to come up with an out-of-the-box idea for fall leaves.  Share it with us in our Scrap Girls Newsletter Challenge Gallery  to be entered into our weekly prize drawing!

 Newsletter Challenge Winner:  

Hope by Victoria Lamar (VictoriaLamar1)

Congratulations Victoria! You may retrieve your gift certificate by emailing prizes@scrapgirls.com.

Upcoming Chats & Challenges

  • Monday, November 17th: Random Challenge by Theresa (tiza126)
  • Tuesday, November 18th: Newsletter Challenge hosted by Monica (Nica)
  • Wednesday, November 19th:High Noon Crop and Challenge

Join April (April Showers) in the chat room at 12:00 p.m. (ET) for the High Noon Crop. This week we’ll a Brush Challenge! Try to use at least two brushes in your layout. New to using brushes? We will have some fun ideas and tips in the chat. Upload your completed page to the special High Noon Crop & Challenge Gallery. We hope to see you in the chat room!

  • Thursday, November 20th: Blog Inspired Challenge by Andrea (alsoarty)
  • Thursday, November 20th: Heritage Crop and Challenge

Join April (April Showers) at 8 PM ET for the Heritage Crop and Chat. We’ll help you get motivated to scrap those heritage photos and record your family stories for future generations to enjoy. Join us in the chat room for tips, ideas and a special challenge.

  • Friday, November 21st: : Freebie Challenge by Shannon (tinkerbell11)
  • Saturday November 22nd: Color Challenge by Conda (SodScrap)

November Monthly Layout Contest: Home Sweet Home

As the holidays approach, thoughts of family and home come to mind.  For the November Layout Contest, we’d love to see your layouts about your Home Sweet Home!  Maybe you have a hometown you love or a childhood home you miss.  Is there a special room or place in your house you enjoy and feel especially comfortable in?  Where do you feel most at “home”?   We’d love it if you could share a layout with us!

Please post your completed layouts in the November Contest Gallery before midnight ET on November 30th to be eligible for a $10 gift certificate to the Scrap Girls Boutique!   Be sure to add your product credits to the description area or in the EXIF properties to be considered for the prize.   Good Luck!

November Forum Game: Styles and Techniques

Join us on the forum during November where we will be challenging you to create layouts using different styles and techniques.

Each week, Monday to Thursday, members of The Welcoming Committee will be posting mini challenges based around our favorite layout styles and techniques.  We will even have some surprise guest hosts.  You then create a layout using one or more of that week’s mini challenges.

For every mini challenge you include in your layout you will gain one point, include all four and you will gain a bonus point.  Each point is worth one entry in the prize draw.  At the end of the month, we will do a random draw, and you could win one of five $5 Gift Certificates to use in the Scrap Girls Boutique.

For full details, including the new point system, see the November Game Threads on the forum.

 

 

 

Flip-Pal Mobile Scanner – So Easy to Use & Fall FREEBIE!

Have you wanted to preserve your stories, photos, old letters, cards, and other memorabilia but have a hard time getting started? The Flip-Pal Mobile Scanner can help you! You can scan just about anything with the Flip-Pal and turn those scans into custom backgrounds and embellishments to personalize your layouts.

Every time I show my friends how the Flip-Pal Mobile scanner works, they want to borrow it! Here are the tips I give when I loan out my scanner:

  • Read the User Guide located on the SD card.
  • Use the Toolbox software to Browse Scans, Stitch Scans, and Restore Color. The software is also on the SD card.
  • Use the USB adapter that comes with the scanner to read the SD card.
  • Don’t worry about draining the battery if you forget to turn off the scanner because the power saver feature shuts off the scanner in one minute.
  • Snap off the lid, flip the scanner over, and use the alignment guides when scanning large items. Overlap the scans by at least one inch so the stitching software can do its job.
  • Limit the number of images that you want to stitch together to 16 in order to maintain the resolution.

I love loaning my scanner to friends so they can turn their memorabilia into digital images. I don’t worry about wearing out the scanner because it has a minimum lifespan of 10,000 scans!

My latest project with the scanner was to create a 2015 calendar poster. This summer I purchased 12 beautifully embroidered Danish calendar month quilt blocks. Each quilt block was wrapped around a square piece of cardboard that was padded with batting so they didn’t lay flat.

I took four scans of each block and used the stitching software to create a JPG image of each block. To make the quilt blocks look like they are sewn together, I created a pattern using the fabric background of one of the quilt blocks and then filled in the calendar background layer with the pattern.

You can find the Flip-Pal mobile scanner under Cool Stuff in the Scrap Girls Boutique. With Christmas coming, it might just need to find its way into someone’s stocking!

Products Used:
Article written by Pam Zeman
Grab this special Fall Blog Freebie before it’s too late!
You can find the download links in the What’s New?  section of our Boutique.

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