Friday, January 26, 2018

Family Photo Snow Globe Christmas Card + Free Cricut Design Space File

I have been wondering when I should share my Christmas card this from this year (or I guess it was technically last year). I didn't want to share it prior to Christmas because I didn't want to spoil the surprise for those who received it. And sharing it after Christmas didn't seem as inspiring.

Seeing as this month's Blog Hops With Heart theme is Paper Pizazz, I jumped at the chance since I used a lot of specialty paper, which certainly added PIZAZZ! The hop starts with Amie, but it is a circle so you can follow along to see the fabulous projects that our team created. (And might I add, we have some very talented designers!) 

Like most people nowadays, I like to include a family photo on my Christmas card. But being a cardmaker, I just couldn't order them online...I had to create my own design. We hadn't sent a Christmas card in 3 years, so I wanted to come out of the holiday card black hole with a bang! I am not sure where the snow globe idea came from, but I was adamant that I would design the card around our family photo looking through a snow globe. I decided to adhere the photo to the inside of the card so that those who wanted to remove the photo could do so.

After much trial and error and Cricut-engineering, here is the final result:

This was probably the most complicated Cricut project I've put together. My dad is an engineer and I notice every now and then that I do have an engineering gene! I cut the 10x7 base (folded to 5x7) and all the layers with the Cricut, so I had to make sure the snow globe circle lined up on all of them.

I also wanted to make sure I maximized every inch of the paper I used, because I used some fancy paper that is not cheap! I used glitter cardstock, foiled patterned cardstock, and the red is also a fun foil-finish cardstock. (Check out the DS file below to see how I maximized the red - I thought it was pretty clever, if I do say so myself !) 😊

To hide the edges of all the layers and define the globe, I added a thin border around the circle with glitter paper. The layers of the front of the card in order from bottom to top are: Card base, red frame, clear acetate square, foiled patterned paper, glitter paper border, snowglobe base, and "Blessed" sentiment. (Which, by the way, is 2 fonts that I combined together then welded, because I didn't like the look of any 1 font for this sentiment. Yeah, I am a perfectionist which sometimes makes things more complicated.) 😏🤣

This is what you see when you open the card. I also covered the inside of the window with glitter paper. I added a stamped sentiment from Close to my Heart using Espresso ink and some paper strips to coordinate with the outside of the card.

I used CTMH cardstock for the base because it's nice and heavy paper. I used a retired color but it's close to the current Almond or Toffee. You could also use white if you prefer, but I find it more difficult to use white when cutting with the Cricut - it doesn't have the dye coating and when you peel it from the mat (especially if it's a newer mat), the cardstock tears more easily. If you really want to use white, use a Cricut mat that has been around the block a time or two and also make sure you remove the paper ASAP once the cut is finished!

I want to note that when I mailed these, especially since I added a bulky wood veneer snowflake, I put a thin layer of foam (similar to the foam that comes with CTMH's stamp sets) over the front, then inserted into a sturdy A7 envelope. You could also use a bubble envelope, but this worked well from the feedback I received, and only cost 2 stamps for postage. I also included a family update letter that I cut to 5x7 and added to the envelope behind the card (so as not to interfere with the see-thru design of the card!).

I hope you enjoyed! I'm happy to share my Design Space file so that you don't need to put in all the work I did! The file is set up for mass production to maximize the use of a 12x12 sheet of paper for each shape. You can find it here:

Snow Globe Christmas Card
Design Space File

Thanks for stopping by! Let me know if you have any questions.

P.S. Be sure to join my new Playing With Paper VIP Group - I transferred my Fan Page to a Group because Facebook's algorithms were preventing what I share from actually reaching the people who care! 😭

Monday, January 15, 2018

Easy Watercolor Background Card With Heat Embossing: Video Tutorial

I love when I am so inspired by a card or other piece of art, that I HAVE to create my own version right away! That's what happened with this card. I was really inspired by this one by Penny Ward. Hers was an ombre blue watercolor background and was a Christmas card, and mine is obviously a thank you card with purples. Here's a look at the full card, and below it I have a video tutorial to share my process with you, along with some close-up photos.

You can view the video below or on YouTube.

I was in a purple mood, so I used a few shades of purple to create my watercolor background, which came together very easily. I love the gold and black splatters, too.

You'll see in my process video that the gold embossed sentiment took a few tried to get just right. The first couple just didn't stand out enough, but I wanted to show you that you can almost always fix something you don't like. It's part of the creative process!

The Heart Border die set is a triple whammy. They come as 2 border dies but you not only get 2 borders out of them, but all the tiny hearts that you pop out of the heart outline border, which I used as embellishments scattered on the card. I adhered all of the die cuts with a glue pen.

Thanks for watching! I'd love to hear what you think...leave me a comment!  

If you enjoy this video, please SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube channel!

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If you are interested in any of the supplies I used, I have linked them below. Let me know if you have any questions.


*Close to my Heart*
Thanks Stamp (the one I used is retired, but it can be replaced with a myriad of different sentiment stamps!)
Hearts Border Die Set
Gold Glitter Gems
Black Glitter Paper
Black Cardstock (nice and heavy)
Gold Shimmer Trim (CTMH's is 1/4" - the 1/2" trim I used is from American Crafts, which I bought at Impress Stamps in Seattle. I found it on Amazon HERE but it's overpriced.)


Saturday, January 13, 2018

Kids Scrapbook Walkthrough: My 4-Year-Old Daughter's 6x6 Scrapbook Album

My daughter loves to scrapbook and has her own 6x6 album. Since I posted her scrapbook process video last week, I thought it would be fun to share her album of completed pages today. You can view it below or on YouTube.

She has her own stash of 6x6 and 12x12 paper and a ton of stickers and embellishments that I've bought for her, were given to her, or I've passed on to her. It's nice to know that I can destash right to her craft organizers! :)

She currently has a 6"x6" album because this size page was easiest for her when she first started. But I'm considering switching to a 6"x8" album for a few reasons.

  1. 6x8 albums are more popular and easier to find right now.
  2. They are available as 3-ring binders so it's easier to get the pages in and out.
  3. Gives a little more room for more photos or embellishments but is not overwhelming.
    • This could backfire a little, as you can see she LOVES to embellish - the bigger size paper could mean going through lots more embellishments! LOL!

I'm sure I'll be sharing multiple parts of this album soon - she loves scrapbooking! I love watching her excitement and creativity. And in years and decades from now, she's going to LOVE looking back at her scrapbooks (and so will I!).

If you enjoyed this, please SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube channel :)

Thanks for visiting!
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Here is a list of supplies I use for stamping with my 4-year-old daughter. Let me know if you'd like help choosing supplies for your child.


Flash sales is still going on today until 3:00pm Mountain Time!
Shop Close to my Heart Products >

You can now view the NEW Seasonal Expressions 2 Idea Book! Check it out >

Friday, January 12, 2018

FLASH SALE! 24 Hour Only!

I'm so excited, CTMH just announced a 24-hour Flash Sales on my Close to my Heart website! The last time they did a flash sale wasn't that long ago, but it went so well that they're doing it again. I hope they keep this up! Shop now >

These aren't retired products that are leftover and they're trying to clear out inventory...this is CURRENT products at a DISCOUNT! 

But they are only allocating a certain amount of these products to the sale, so if you see something you want you better grab it while it's available. See what's on sale >

Sale purchases count toward the Stamp of the Month deal! Get the January stamp of the month, Bloom & Grow, for only $5 with a $50 purchase on my website. Once you have $50 in your cart the stamp of the month will pop up to ADD for only $5! You'll also score a copy of the new Seasonal Expressions 2 Idea Book with your order (if you haven't already gotten one).

Sale starts NOW and ends at 3:00pm MT tomorrow (Saturday 1/13). Happy shopping! 

Let me know if you have any questions.

You can now view the NEW Seasonal Expressions 2 Idea Book! Check it out >

Monday, January 8, 2018

Stamping With Kids: My 4-Year-Old's Scrapbooking Process Video


I have an exciting announcement to make, and then have a fun video to share with you of my daughter using two stamp sets to make a 6"x6" scrapbook page.

My exciting news is that I have decided to come "out of hibernation" with my Close to my Heart business. For the last several years I have focused on having/raising my babies and although I have remained a CTMH Consultant thanks to the amazing customers and business I had built before having kids, I have decided that since my kids are not "babies" anymore, I am going to devote more time to my business now. I have missed it! I especially love the new seasonal catalog that just came out. You can check it out here >

Ok, now for this fun video. You are going to crack up! My daughter, Kailyn (age 4) loves crafting with me (I am so proud!) and over the weekend I decided to record her stamping and creative "process" for her scrapbook page. (I shortened it A LOT so as not to bore you, but kept all the good parts!) (View on YouTube or below.)

She has her own 6"x6" scrapbook album and has been into scrapbooking for the past 6 months or so. I taught her how to stamp a few months ago and it took her a little while to get the hang of it. She's a perfectionist (not unlike me!) and would get frustrated if the image didn't stamp "perfectly." We hadn't practiced in a while but last night she had it DOWN! I'm so proud! It's been fun to watch her skills and creativity grow.

Isn't it amazing to watch kids' creative/thought processes? They often come up with stuff that we adults wouldn't even imagine. Like foxes, robots, space ships, and superman for a photo of her in an Elsa princess dress at the park. LOL! Gosh I love this kid! :) :)

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If you have a budding artist in your life, I'd love to help you pick out a few products to help them flourish! Here is what we used. Feel free to contact me for my recommendations for you!


Shop Close to my Heart Products >

You can now view the NEW Seasonal Expressions 2 Idea Book! Check it out >