Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Monday, October 29, 2012

Some New Freebies + Purging Tips

Hi, Nesters!  It's Dawn here, with a quick post for this last Monday in October.  I've got a couple freebies to share with you today, and I'm going to share some tips for purging your stash (I've been in the midst of a huge purge lately!).

First, the folks at My Memories have some new freebies for me to share with you.  These three kits are up for another week, and then they'll be swapped out for some new free downloads.  A little birdie told me that we'll be hosting a giveaway for a copy of the My Memories Suite Digital Software soon too, so be on the lookout if you've wanted to give digital or hybrid scrapbooking a try!

The three kits available for download right now include papers, page elements, and even templates to make coordinating party hats!  

The first kit is called "Chocolate Kisses" and can be downloaded by clicking here.  I like the color scheme of this kit - plus, you can never go wrong with chocolate!  :)



Here's a picture of the hats after they're cut out and assembled:




The second kit is called "Outer Space" and I think it would be perfect for a child's birthday.






You can download the "Outer Space" kit by clicking here.

Finally, there is the "Teen Dreams" kit, available by clicking here.  I especially love the blue damask pattern and that ornate black frame in this set.



Here are the hats assembled:



Remember, there is no obligation to purchase anything else if you download one (or more!) of these kits.  

Before I share some purging tips, I want to share a link to one more free download!  Echo Park has their Christmas Idea Book available now (just click here).  I love their step-by-step projects, and the cover project is amazing! 



Now, on to the tips!  But first, a little background...for the past couple weeks, my children and I have been fighting the yuck that seems to be going around.  We had to cut a mini-vacation short I got so sick (my husband knew it was bad when I was willing to forego a trip to IKEA to come home!).  No sooner did I get better than my boys came down with it, so we've been sniffling and sneezing all over the house!  Once I got better, I went into super-cleaning mode, and my craft room seems to have taken the brunt of my "tidying".

I have a ridiculous amount of scrapbook product, and it was at the point where I was forgetting what I had.  As soon as I started to clean, it seemed like I couldn't stop!  

I'm almost embarrassed to admit this, but I've currently got three 18-gallon storage tubs filled with purged product, and I'm working on a fourth.  Eek.  And I've still got most of my Expedit, all my alpha stickers, and three Cropper Hoppers of paper to go through.  Double eek!  (Remember, I did say it was a ridiculous amount of product.)

Here's a list of a few things I have learned as I've been cleaning out my space:

  1. If I haven't used that "must-have" product in the 5 years since I purchased it, the odds are against me using it in the future.
  2. Buying in bulk is over-rated; I will never use the 50-pack of sheer journaling spots I bought in 2008.  Note to self: in the future, share the large packs with friends.
  3. It is ok to break up kits!  I used to belong to several different kit clubs, and had dozens of kits still in their jumbo-sized ziplock bags.  I went through all the kits and pulled out what I knew I'd use and put the rest in my purge bin.
  4. I don't need 3 or 4 (or more!) sheets of the same paper.  No matter how pretty that paper may be.  Really.  For me, there is one exception to this rule: Scenic Route.  Darn it, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't put any Scenic Route in the purge pile.  Don't judge me.  ;)
  5. Keep what you like.  What you REALLY like.  If you're feeling so-so about paper or ribbon or stickers or rub-ons (don't even get me started about the rub-ons!), get rid of it.  Don't keep product that you don't like.  Of course, the bigger question here may be why said product was purchased in the first place, but I digress...
  6. It's really fun to re-discover "lost gems".  I found paper from 5 years ago that I love (and totally forgot I had!).  Not to mention the kits and wood items that were sitting collecting dust - but are now on my to-do list for Christmas!
  7. I can pretty much guarantee that after going through your stash you'll be much more careful what you purchase in the future.  (Even when it's a great deal.)

And now, I need to head back in to my craft room for more cleaning.  :)

Have a great week Nesters!



As a disclaimer: Craft Your Nest is an affiliate with My Memories, and does receive a portion of software sales only.  The freebies are shared by My Memories with their affiliates as a way to introduce people to the site; neither My Memories nor Craft Your Nest receive any financial gain by sharing the freebies - they truly are a free gift.  :)


Friday, October 26, 2012

Halloween Goodies

Hello and happy Friday.  Cheryl here to share some Halloween ideas with you.  Are you a fan of Martha Stewart?  Did you know you can get a "Craft of The Day" right in your inbox?  (If you'll click on the link I just put in, you can sign up to receive these.)  The "Craft of The Day" for October 25th is a photo booth, but if you'll look directly below that picture, you'll see lots of other Halloween ideas.  It's pretty sweet!

What I love  is that Martha includes templates and freebies that you just have to print out and cut out!  Here are two examples of adorable Halloween invitations that are all ready for you to just print and cut out.  The first invitation are these cute owls.


Aren't these the cutest???  If you click on "make the invitation"  ~ the directions and the link to the template will appear.

Here's what the next screen looks like:


Click on "Get the owl template" and you'll get this file that you can print out:


This isn't full size ~ you'll have to go the the owl invitation link to get the proper size.


Here's another adorable invitation using a skeleton:


How totally adorable are these???

Follow the same procedure that you followed for the owl invitations.




Here's what your template will look like:


Again, this isn't full sized.

Last but not least, you need to check out Martha's Pinterest Halloween board!!  I hope I've given you some good ideas or at least a good resource for making some Halloween goodies!!

Thanks for stopping by and be sure to leave me a comment here or in our Craft Your Nest FB Group if you checked these Halloween goodies out!!  I'd love to hear from you.

~ Cheryl ~



Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Musical Inspiration

I am such a music junkie!
I don't know what I would do without my ipod for exercise or cleaning the house.
And in many ways, music has been inspirational to me over the years.
I have used a lot of lyrics from songs as titles, quotes, or for journaling on my scrapbook pages over the years.
Here are a few examples.
This is from several years ago back in 2006! I had a few photos of a neighbor's daughter that I babysat from the time she was 14 months until she was three. Evan has literally grown up with her because they have known each other since they were babies. At the time of this layout, I loved, loved KT Tunstall's song Suddenly I See. And a part of the lyrics became the title for this layout :)
Here's a layout that was one of those pages that didn't turn out the way I had hoped. You know, one of those layouts that you can picture in your head, but cannot get it to come out that way on a page :)
Anyway, I used some lyrics from a song called Giving Up the Gun by Vampire Weekend as the title. Every time I heard those lyrics, I thought of Erin!
This one of course uses lyrics from a favorite song and band of mine, U2. Evan has a playlist on his ipod of quiet U2 music he put together and listens to at bedtime. "One" is the first song on that list and I hear it every night as we talk about his day a little bit before bed. Those lyrics are stuck in my head forever. So much truth to them!
A more recent layout that I may have shared here before has a title inspired by lyrics from a song called Houdini by Foster the People. My layout has nothing to do with the song, but every time I heard those lyrics I thought about how sometimes I wished I could get away when life got crazy. It's funny how just one simple line can take on a whole new meaning then what was originally intended.
:)
I know you have seen this one before in my one word titles post. But it has some of my favorite U2 lyrics ever in it. And although I didn't originally choose my title because it is a U2 song, it hit me afterwards that "Stay" is such a great song by them. So fitting for this page.
My most recent layout uses lyrics from a song by Jason Mraz called "If It Kills Me". You can see a portion of the lyrics, the ones that inspired this layout, to the right of the photo. And then at the bottom of my journaling is a secondary title that twists the words around a bit to fit my story.

So there are many ways you can be inspired by and use song lyrics on your scrapbook pages.
Have you done any pages with song lyrics you would like to share?
Or if you are inspired to create a page using song lyrics, we would love to see it! Cards work, too :)
Either link up here, or you can post on our Facebook page group (link up at the top right).

*And Rosey was my winner last week for the alphabet set, but I haven't heard from you yet ;)
Don't forget to email me at mmrhoda@sbcglobal.net by next Wednesday so I can get your prize out to you.




Monday, October 22, 2012

Paper Pumpkins

With Halloween fast approaching, we've been seeing pumpkins everywhere!  Today, I'm going to share a tutorial for some easy paper pumpkins that my boys and I made together.  


Aren't they cute?  They're super quick too, and very kid-friendly!

What you'll need:

  • patterned paper (we used 6x6 paper)
  • cardstock for the stem and leaves
  • brads (to hold the paper strips together)
  • strong adhesive
  • a paper trimmer
  • a pencil to wrap the cardstock around to make the stem
  • small punch or paper piercer
  • a leaf punch (optional)
  • ink for the stem/leaves (optional)

First, cut the paper into 1" strips.  We used two 6x6 sheets of paper for each pumpkin, which resulted in 12 strips.


With a small punch (we used the 1/8" setting on my crop-a-dile) or a paper piercer, make holes on each end of the strips for the brads.


Stack the strips and secure a brad through one of the holes.


Fan out your strips.


One at a time, curve the strips onto a second brad (the pointed end will be up).  And please excuse my fingernail that desperately needs to be repainted.  ;)


When you're done, the bottom of your pumpkin will look like this:


Cut a small strip of cardstock for the stem (mine were roughly 3.5" by 3/4").  Ink the edges if you wish.  To make the stem, wrap the strip around a pencil and glue the end down to keep the curved shape.


At this point, you could also cut leaves.  We had an abundance of leaves once my boys were done with the punch.  Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures....just picture my living room with little green paper leaves all over the floor.  :)

To finish your pumpkin, simply glue the stem and leaves (if you made them) onto the pumpkin with a strong adhesive.  I used Diamond Glaze, but I think E-6000 would work even better (I didn't want to risk the fumes on my boys though).  A glue gun would also be a good choice.


Super quick and easy!  Since there are five of us in our family, we made a family of five pumpkins.  :)


I hope you enjoyed this little tutorial!  Are you crafting anything for Halloween at your nest?

Friday, October 19, 2012

More Digital Sites & A Winner

I thought I'd let you in on a few of my favorite digital sites on the internet.  If you read my posts very often, you'll know that one of my go-to sites for vintage images is Free Vintage Images.  You can sign up for email updates too, which is nice.  Whatever you're looking for, just type it in the search bar (on the site) and you'll probably find it.  I've been using these images for a long long time.  I LOVE using the images from Free Vintage Images because they're copyright free and there are NO restrictions on them!!  I LOVE that.

A site that I was just introduced to is called Free Pretty Things.  They also have free vintage clipart, as well as DIY projects and challenges. You'll need to check out their policies, because I'm new to that site.  Remember that when you download any digital images, free or otherwise, there are usually "strings" attached and you need to understand what those are.  A lot of sites call it the "Angel Policy" and it will be posted someplace on the site.  Just be sure to read it.

I also recently signed up for updates from Pugsley Pixel.  There's a lot of Photoshop information on there and lots of blog design tips.  I haven't had a whole lot of time to explore, but I think it's going to be a great informational resource site.

Somebody left me a comment the other day and said they didn't know Echo Park was selling digital scrapbooking kits now.  I use Echo Park digitals all the time and quite often Jessica Sprague has them for $1.00!!!  That's right ~ $1.00!!  I ALWAYS snap them up!  When Jessica has One Buck Wednesday, she always has some great bargains on other digital collections, too!!  Just because they're SO awesome, I've got to show you the three Echo Park digital kits that I just bought.




How cool are these???  If you'll notice, these all say "hybrids" on them.  They're definitely digital scrapbooking kits, but I also love to convert the png files to jpgs, print them on cardstock and cut them out and use on them on paper projects.  They're really versatile like that.  The kits that contain tags, titles and larger elements are especially conducive to hybrid projects.  One of the new digital kits I just bought had a whole folder of card elements ~ wow!)

Here's one more digital site that has a free daily download.  They send you one element each day from a specific kit.  You can also buy some awesome digital kits from them at very reasonable prices.  It's called Digital Scrapbooking Experts (DSE) for short.  They also have great digital tutorials.  I get a freebie from DSE every day in my inbox.

These are just a few of the sites that offer free digital supplies ~ there are lots of them out there ~ you just have to start looking.  I actually started "collecting" and saving free digi elements long before I started to scrapbook digitally.  Here's a hint ~ you have find a "system" that best works for you.  You have to be able to "find" all of the digital files that you save.  The number one issue I've heard from beginning digital scrapbookers is that they have trouble "finding" the files they keep.  It's kind of frustrating if you don't have a "system".

And now, for the winner from my post next week.  Here are the two things that I'm giving to one of our followers who left me a comment last week:


K & Company's Life Journey Chipboard Letters and:


A sheet of Webster's Pages Mini Messages.


I numbered your comments in the order in which they were posted.

  1. Rosey
 2. Sarah
 3. Maria
 4. Stacy
5. Pam
      6. Michelle

And the winner is.....................................# 5 ~ Pam!!!


Congratulations, Pam!  Please email me at cherylndesigns@gmail.com and give me your mailing information.

Thanks to ALL of you for leaving such nice comments and joining The Nest!!  If you've already entered the world of digital scrapbooking, or if you're just starting to get interested, I'd love to hear about it.  If you have any comments or questions or suggestions for future posts, or possible challenges, I'd love to hear about those, too.

Thanks for stopping by today and sharing your time with us.  We'd love for you to become a follower if you aren't already.  We have a growing Craft Your Nest Group on Facebook that we'd love to have you join too.  
















Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Alphabet Tip and a Winner!

I have been using these Thickers alphabet stickers by American Crafts a lot in recent layouts.
I have two sets of them. One I had purchased and the most recent came in my October kit by Scrapbooking From the Inside Out.
I created these layouts this past summer...
and then a few more for Scrapbooking From the Inside Out projects...
But for the next two layouts, I decided to change them up just a little bit :)
We received a bottle of Tattered Angels glimmer glaze in our kit this month, and I wanted to see how it worked on the foam letters.
And I was able to make the word Ireland stand out in my title just a bit more. The glaze worked wonderfully on the foam Thickers.
Then for my next layout, I just pulled out one of my Color Box cat's eye Fluid Chalk Inkpad's in Yellow Cadmium...
and was able to stamp the numbers perfectly! The yellow blended more with my papers and helped the title pop better than just the plain white color.

So my tip to you, is don't be afraid to play with your foam letters a little bit and change them up if you need another color. They make the "mistable" Thickers now, but they are pretty expensive compared to the plain foam letters. So I think I am going to give my mists and paints a try the next time I need some added color :)

And now for a winner! Thanks to all of our new followers and Facebook group members for joining in here at Craft Your Nest. We are happy to see all of the new faces :)
I cut up the entries for blog followers and then added an extra entry for each person who joined the group as well.

Then Erin reached into the envelope of names for me...
and pulled out this one!

love and follow this blog thanks for sharing the freebies
i love free99


So Rosey, if you could email me at mmrhoda@sbcglobal.net with your address, I will send out your prize :)

Thanks again!






Sunday, October 14, 2012

Oh, the memories!

I've gone digital!  For today, at least.  :)

Last week, I posted about Craft Your Nest's newest affiliate, My Memories.  This week, I've been playing around with their My Memories Suite digital software, and I'd like to share a couple of my creations with you.

I've been creating with the Coast to Coast kit - it is adorable!  Here is a layout I created of my youngest son:



I'm a newbie at these digital pages, so I'm definitely learning as I go.  I did figure out how to add the star from a Persnickety kit onto the page, and I was pretty proud of myself for that one.  :)

I'm also working on an "abc" book of our family.  Here's a page of my middle guy:


The "abc" book will be a 5x7 mini-album when all is said and done.  The plan is to keep things simple, so all the pages will follow this basic layout.  I'll post when I'm all done (though it may not be finished 'til 2013!).

I've been enjoying playing around with the software.  So far, I haven't felt the need to throw anything at the computer in frustration.  ;)  I'm learning as I create, and I don't have tons of experience, but I'll definitely share what I've learned if anyone is interested.  Please comment and let me know if you'd like some tutorials.  

Also, if you're interested in trying the software for yourself, My Memories offers a free trial.  They're also offering $10 off for Craft Your Nest readers with the coupon code STMMMS12633.  As an added incentive, from now until Christmas, My Memories will be holding a random drawing for a FREE photobook from those who purchased the software each week!  

And speaking of FREE, My Memories has some Halloween freebies to share with you!  The designers have created some coffin boxes that you can use as decoration, or to store Halloween candy.  There are three designs to choose from, and you can download one, two, or all three!

The first kit has a scaredy cat design:


The second kit has a skull and spiders design:


And the third kit has a text design (this one's my favorite):


Note: you do not need the My Memories software to download and print these designs.  They are completely free and there is no obligation to buy the software if you download the images.

I hope you enjoy these freebies!  I'll be back later this week with a tutorial on creating the boxes!
 
Images by Freepik