SALE-A-BRATION PRODUCT OF THE WEEK: BOTANICALS FOR YOU STAMP SET AND BOTANICAL GARDENS DESIGNER VELLUM STACK

During Stampin’ Up!’s annual Sale-A-Bration event, you earn FREE Sale-A-Bration rewards for every $50 US/$60 CA you spend on Stampin’ Up! products, including the very diverse Botanicals for You Stamp Set and Botanical Gardens Designer Vellum Stack—two of our favorite Sale-A-Bration products!

One of the things that makes these products so cool is that they coordinate perfectly with the Botanical Gardens Suite from the 2016 occasions catalog. Throw all of these products together in a semi-organized way and come out with a set of four fantastic cards, as well as a nifty card holder. Life is good during Sale-A-Bration! Contact me today to learn how you can get your hands on these tropically-themed products.blogheader_justforyou_sabpow_012616

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Sale A Bration 2016

It’s my favorite time of year for Stampin’ Up!….Sale A Bration time! I regret that I am delayed in getting this information out to you, as right after the new year began I was faced with unexpected emergency surgery (I am now less on gall bladder) and some unfortunate post-surgical complications and infections which wiped me out for a few weeks. However, God is good and I’m getting back on my feet and I’m ready to jump back in to my favorite thing, paper crafting! And Sale A Bration is the PERFECT time to do that!

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Click here to see the 2016 Sale A Bration Catalog!

What could be better than FREE product?  I’ll be sharing specific product ideas using the sale items, old favorites, as well as items from the NEW Occasions Catalog for 2016

Sale on Paper Pumpkin PLUS a free gift- yes, really!

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A discounted 3-month Paper Pumpkin subscription + a FREE #SaleABration item? Sign us up! No, seriously—where do we sign up? (Psst! Start with the link below.)
Get a 3-month Paper Pumpkin subscription for just $55 US/$69 CAN and instantly qualify for a FREE Sale-A-Bration item? Yes, please! Now is the best time to skip to the fun with us! We’ve discounted the 3-month subscription to make it supereasy (one word) for you to qualify for Sale-A-Bration, the hottest Stampin’ Up! promotion of the year!
Take it to the next level and surprise yourself every month for a year! With a 12-month prepaid subscription at the everyday awesome price, you’ll save even more!
Save $24/year (it’s like getting a free month)

Stampin’ Rewards (if you host a party or place your own online order)

4 FREE Sale-A-Bration items 

And just like that, you hit the Sale-A-Bration jackpot! Talk to your demonstrator (that would be me, Laura) to place your order, or visit the online store (US/CA). You can call or email me with your order, or chose Laura Dehnert from Lake Mills, WI under the demonstrator directory more info here.

Here’s the deal in black and white:

3-Month Prepaid Subscription (137859) $59.85 $55
Save on a 3-month prepaid subscription and instantly qualify for a FREE Sale-A-Bration item!

12-Month Prepaid Subscription (137861) $215.40
Take it to the next level with a 12-month prepaid subscription. Save $24 a year with the everyday awesome price, earn Stampin’ Rewards, and instantly qualify for FREE Sale-A-Bration items! 

Offer ends at 11:50 PM (MT) and that’s pretty much all the fine print we have for you this time because this deal is just that awesome!

Sale-A-Bration Product Ideas

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I can’t stop talking about Sale-A-Bration, but it’s such a good deal I can’t keep it to myself! Are you wondering which of the products you should choose with your order (one product for every $50 spent pre-tax & shipping)? Do you already have some of the products and are looking for ways to use them? You’re in luck, because Stampin’ Up! has created a Pinterest board just for the 2015 Sale-A-Bration products! You can find that board by clicking here.

While you’re on Pinterest, you can check out ALL the awesome boards Stampin’ Up! has here, and if you’re interested, you can check out my Pinterest boards, many of which are paper crafting focused, by clicking here.

Looking for more ideas? Stampin’ Up! also has a YouTube channel, and some of the recent videos feature Sale-A-Bration products! I’m also posting ideas and more links on my Blackbird Scraps Facebook Page for the rest of the Sale-A-Bration season, which continues through March 31, 2015.

Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or if I can help you with your paper crafting! Happy stampin’ and scrappin’!

Featured Sale-A-Bration Product: “Irresistibly Yours” Specialty Designer Series Paper

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This post is featuring the “Irresistibly Yours” specialty designer series paper. Available only through the Sale-A-Bration brochure, this special 12×12 paper is acid & lignin free for safe memory keeping.  It has a unique white paper with different glossy white patterns, designed to allow you to color the paper using a variety of different techniques.  As you add color, the pattern will become more and more revealed.

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Here is the different designs you’ll receive, 2 of each for 12 sheets total, 12×12 size.  The brown shade shown here is to show the different patterns clearly.  Now here are three different examples of using this paper, and you’ll notice how very different from each other they are, just by using different colors and coloring techniques.

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I’d be happy to teach you the different techniques used here, and recommend the best inks, markers, and tools to achieve the effect you’re looking for.  You can earn this paper set for FREE between now and March 31st when you purchase $50 or more (pre-tax & shipping).  If this isn’t your cup of tea, I’m sure there’s something that will catch your eye in the Sale-A-Bration brochure. Contact me with any questions or to place an order, I’d love to help!

Sneak Peek at the Newest Project Life by Stampin’ Up! Collection (and more new Holiday projects)!

One of my favorite things about being a Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator is the privilege of being able to pre-order new products.  Yup…Demonstrators are usually given the opportunity to purchase new products before they are available for sale to customers.  The 2014 Holiday catalog is full of amazing new products for Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year’s.  One of my favorite products in the catalog is (of course) the newest Project Life by Stampin’ Up! card & accessory pack called “Seasonal Snapshot”.

I’ve been meaning to start my 2013 Project Life family album, so I pulled out our un-scrapped Christmas photos from last year and started playing.  I’m thrilled with this layout.

Project Life Christmas layout using the Seasonal Snapshot collection

Project Life Christmas layout using the Seasonal Snapshot collection

As usual with Project Life, this layout came together quite quickly.  I find that Continue reading

Resizing photos for Project Life

Create perfectly sized photos for your Project Life pocket pages!

Create perfectly sized photos for your Project Life pocket pages!

I’ve had several people ask me how I create the smaller sized photos I often use on my Project Life pages. I decided to try to write this tutorial to explain my process so I could just direct people to one post.
Let me start by saying this is not my original idea. I saw other Project Lifers on Pinterest, Facebook, etc. using apps to edit their photos in a very similar way as I’m about to describe. I don’t remember exactly who I saw it from first so I unfortunately can’t give credit. Thankfully most people in the scrapbooking community are all about freely sharing ideas & inspiration, so I hope this post can help someone who hasn’t seen this information yet.

I’m a diehard Apple girl, so I will be referring to apps and directions based on using an iPhone. I do hope that Android users will be able to modify the information and use it too.

I use the PicFrame app primarily. I see it is .99 cents now, but I think I downloaded it for free during a promotion. But in my opinion it is WELL worth the dollar!  There are tons of different apps out there that do the same or similar things, so I encourage you to use the app you like best. These basic directions will hopefully get you started and will translate at least somewhat to other apps. Let’s get started!

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So first, open your PicFrame app. The most important step is to change your ratio to 3:2. This is the same as 6×4. If you are working with the 3:2 ratio, your finished photo collage will print well as a 4×6 print. There are photo labs that print the square 4×4 “Instagram” sized photos, but since 4×6 is the most common, that’s what I like to work with the most.

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Two 4×3 photos on one 4×6 is probably what I use the most, because of the 4×3 and 3×4 pockets of Project Life pages. After you change your ratio, click on the 2nd frame on the top row. It will be square on the front page, but when you click it after you’ve changed your ratio, you’ll see it will open up into a rectangle, which is what we want for 4×6 pictures.


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Tap a grey rectangle

Click "camera roll" to select your photos

Click “camera roll” to select your photos

Click “camera roll” to select your pictures. You can chose both photos at once (it will say 1 of  2, then 2 of 2) but if your photos are in different albums you can select just one photo, then click the other grey square, and repeat the process and go into a different photo album. I sometimes use other photo editing apps to add filters, text, or designs to my pictures, and those often get stored in albums by app.

Two 4x3 images on one 4x6 print

Two 4×3 images on one 4×6 print

 

PicFrame by default will put this white border around your photos. If you like it, keep it. If you don’t, click on “style”. If you slide the width button all the way to the left, it will remove the border completely. Or, you could make the border wider by sliding to the right, and you can also change the color if you wish. The “options” button in the top right also lets you round the corners of your borders if you wish. Sometimes I do leave a white border on my pictures, it can really make them pop on your layouts. You can always crop them off later, but you’ll lose that perfect 3×4 sizing.

You can adjust the width & color of your border (or remove it all together)

You can adjust the width & color of your border (or remove it all together)

 

When you are done with the border style, go to adjust. On this “adjust” screen, pinch and stretch with your fingers to zoom in and out of your photo. This way you are kinda “pre-cropping” your photos, and when you print them they will be ready to just cut in half and be ready to go as 3×4’s.  See how I zoomed in compared to the image above?  On the right side, Daddy’s legs are no longer a distraction in the photo, and we get a nicer close up of the baby. On the left, I managed to get rid of most of Sissy’s blue pants, and zooming in showcases the happy looks on baby & Daddy’s faces.

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When you are happy with your picture, click on “share” and then “save”

Don't forget to save!

Don’t forget to save!

 

The finished product, ready to cut in half and slide into page protectors.

The finished product, ready to cut in half and slide into page protectors.

The photo will be saved to your camera roll, and  you’re ready to go! You could also decide to share it on social media, using the other buttons. The photos I used above are both vertical. You can create horizontal photos as well.

You can rotate your photos as well.

You can rotate your photos as well.

See the picture on the left of Baby & Grampa?  They are looking out a window at a skyline and I took the photo horizontally. When I selected the photo from my camera roll, the app by default put it in vertically. If you want to change it, tap the photo with your finger, then select “rotate/mirror”. The rotate arrows shown in the picture above will then appear. Rotate your photo as desired, then use your fingers to pinch and pull again to crop it how you want.

working with horizontal photos

working with horizontal photos

You’ll see that the left photo is now horizontal and you can see more of the view, which I want in my printed photo. I’m going to flip the other photo now too:

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There, now Baby Brother is in the photo too. You’ll quickly get the hang of the buttons in the app, have fun playing with positioning and cropping to create the photo you like best.

Remember that first screen of the app, with all the different layouts? You can use those to make other sized photos as well!

one 4x4 and two 2x2's

one 4×4 and two 2×2’s

I also love the look of square photos. Project Life also has several page protector designs with 4×4 and 2×2 square pockets, so it’s nice to have photos that fit perfectly in the pockets. I like to make a collage with one 4×4 and two 2×2’s (I print most of my Instagram photos this way) or six 2×2’s on one 4×6. Remember to keep your 3:2 ratio. The frame highlighted in blue above will create one 4×4 and two 2×2 pictures on one 4×6 print if you keep the 3:2 ratio, like this:

Instagram photo on left, two 2x2's on the right

Instagram photo on left, two 2×2’s on the right

 

I tend to take a TON of pictures with my DSLR and my iPhone, so using 2×2 photos allows me to fit many more photos on a layout than I would have been able to printing each photo at 4×6 individually. It’s also a big money saver, getting anywhere from 2 to 6 photos on a single print! I initially through 2×2 would be too small, but if you zoom & crop correctly, I think this size actually showcases your photos quite nicely.

six 2x2 photos

six 2×2 photos

Again, keep the 3:2 ratio, chose the frame highlighted in blue above, and you can create a six picture collage. I often cut these up into the individual 2x’s and they are really fun to work with.

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Remember to “save” after each collage is created. I tend to create several different collages at once, and then print them.

Now that your pictures are created and saved, you can print your 4×6 with whichever developer you choose, or on your home photo printer. I like both Walgreens and Shutterfly. (A tip for Walgreens users…go through ebates.com and get cash back on your prints, even when you chose in-store pickup. The rate is currently 4%. I have received over $100 from ebates for just clicking through their site when I shop online instead of going directly to the store’s website) Then it’s time for the best part…Project Life!

several sizes of photos on one Project Life page

several sizes of photos on one Project Life page

 

a 2x2 photo attached with washi tape

a 2×2 photo attached with washi tape

 

two 2x2 photos on one 3x4 card

two 2×2 photos on one 3×4 card

I really hope this helps you, and have fun creating! Don’t forget to check out Stampin’ Up!’s exclusive line of Project Life products.  I am head over heels for the new Love Story card collection and accessory pack.

Don’t forget that you can subscribe to Paper Pumpkin for 50% off your first two months through September 10th. The September kit is adorable little burlap Halloween bags & tags. Click here for more information.

I am not affiliated with PicFrame and receive no compensation from them. I only share products and offers with my readers that I trust, use, and love myself!

Using Project Life cards at a Special Event

My youngest son recently turned one year old.  We had a fun party for him…well, I guess you could say party for us. The first birthday party for us was more a great opportunity to gather family and friends to socialize, and of course to celebrate our little guy.

Since he won’t remember the party, I wanted him to have something tangible to commemorate it. I made up a quick sign with instructions in My Digital Studio, put it in a picture frame, and set it out on a table next to blank Project Life cards and some journaling pens.

Created with My Digital Studio

Created with My Digital Studio

 

1st Birthday Party, Stampin' Up! style 1)Project Life sign-in cards 2)Celebrate banner customized with zoo babies to fit theme 3)high chair banner made with MDS

1st Birthday Party, Stampin’ Up! style 1)Project Life sign-in cards 2)Celebrate banner customized with zoo babies to fit theme 3)high chair banner made with MDS

Here’s how it looked set up at the party! 1) is the sign I made with MDS shown in detail above, in a blue frame (fun fact…the two blue frames shown in the picture here were originally used to hold table numbers at our wedding. I get sentimental pretty often). And as a side note I wanted to also show you the Celebrate banner (red arrow 2) that I jazzed up to match his zoo babies party theme by adding a sweet giraffe and elephants as accents. There are several blank frames in the kit to allow you to change up this banner and use it over and over for many different occasions. And the third green arrow is pointing to a little banner on Jackson’s high chair that I made with My Digital Studio in about 5 minutes, printed it, cut it out and glued ribbon on. Personalized, professional looking little addition that really added something. But back to the Project Life cards…..

When the party was over, I had a priceless collection of cards to put into his Project Life album. I of course love the things that his family and friends wrote, but I also love that the cards are each written in those special people’s handwriting. Now in one single album, my son will have greetings from his parents, siblings, grandparents, great-grandfathers, aunts, cousins, etc. I hope he will treasure this when he is older, and this is an easy way to collect memories from other people’s perspective. With three of my grandparents no longer with us, I treasure the handwriting and messages of family still with us.

 

Birthday wishes written by big sisters, ages 11 & 12. What a keepsake this will be!

Birthday wishes written by big sisters, ages 11 & 12. What a keepsake this will be!

 

Notes from Great-Grandpa & Grandma, in their handwriting.

Notes from Great-Grandpa & Grandma, in their handwriting.

 

These are going into Jackson’s 1st Birthday Album-I’m using the 6×8 Espresso album and it’s the perfect size to hold lots of photos, memories and memorabilia about this very special occasion. I also will put a couple pages about his birthday part at the end of his baby book, and a smaller insert page into the Family 2014 Project Life album that I have set up on a weekly system.

What I hope you take away from this is how versatile and useful the Project Life journaling cards can be! Imagine a set up similar to mine at a bridal shower or baby shower. Have guests write messages or advice to the bride-to-be, mom-to-be, or baby. Take a photo of each guest with the bride or mom to be, and put those photos in a small album along with the cards. That would be an amazing gift!

This idea would work great as a wedding guest book idea too. The new Love Story cards are very romantic and sophisticated yet neutral enough to match any wedding style.

I plan on doing this again next June when my oldest graduates High School! How fun will it be to send her off to college with a book of photos of her and her friends and family, along with personalized messages to her?

I’d love to hear of other “out of the box” kinds of ways you use your Project Life journaling cards. Any tips to share?

Thanks for reading, and happy scrapin’!

 

Products used:

Paper Pumpkin-A unique monthly papercraft kit subscription service

Today I want to share with you a little about a unique service that Stampin’ Up! offers. It’s called Paper Pumpkin and it is a monthly subscription service that delivers everything you need to create a paper crafting project (except tape and adhesive). All the pieces are pre-cut, measured and ready to go with instructions included. Each kit takes approximately 30 minutes to create from start to finish. These kits are great for both experienced and new crafters. Projects include things like journals, cards, decor and holiday gifts.

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You will receive 1-2 “stamp spot” ink pads in each kit, and colors will NOT be repeated in a calendar year. What a great way to build your collection of ink colors! And since everything you need for the project is in the box, once you are done with the project you don’t have to worry about storage issues. The stamps that come in the kits are exclusive to Paper Pumpkin and can’t be purchased anywhere else. You will receive a clear block for your stamps when you begin your subscription.

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sample of a previous kit

sample of a previous kit

 

Paper Pumpkin is flexible.Want to give it a try? Just purchase a 1 month pre-paid subscription. Want to take a month off? Just sign in to your account and put your subscription on hold.  Sure this is something you want to do? Purchase a 6 or 12 month prepaid subscription and save money! Paper Pumpkin also makes a fantastic gift. Purchase a 1,3,6, or 12 month prepaid subscription and you’ll receive a code to redeem on the Paper Pumpkin website. Just give this code to the lucky person you are purchasing the gift for, and they can redeem it and have control over their membership should they ever want to put it on hold, change their address, etc. And of course you can simply sign up for a regular subscription, which assures that you’ll receive each kit month after month (but knowing you can place a hold on or cancel your subscription at any time with no penalties).

Examples of various Paper Pumpkin kits. I love the variation and unique feel of each of them.

Examples of various Paper Pumpkin kits. I love the variation and unique feel of each of them.

There’s another bonus just for Paper Pumpkin subscribers- the ability to purchase past full kits as well as refill  kits. A limited selection of past kits are available. Did you get a kit you especially loved and want to make more? Then you can purchase the refill kit and receive all the consumable product – the paper, embellishments, etc but not the stamps or ink (since you already have them!) at a reduced cost.

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(Photos are of previous Paper Pumpkin projects..and most kits, like card kits, include enough materials to make multiple cards)

Part of the fun is wondering…what will this month’s kit be? The kits are all new and improved with larger instruction guides with step by step photographs. Subscribe with a friend and get together monthly when your kits arrive and have a fun evening putting them together. I know a mother/daughter pair who does this via Skype since they live in different states-how fun!

Stampin’ Up! has recently announced an amazing sale for those interested in starting a subscription. How does 50% off your first kit sound? Pretty great! How does 50% off your first TWO kits sound? Well, I hope it sounds exciting because that’s exactly the offer for now through September 10, 2014.

Enter code "HALFOFF2" in the promo code box and choose Laura Dehnert, WI, as your demonstrator. Offer expires 9/10/14.

Enter code “HALFOFF2” in the promo code box and choose Laura Dehnert, WI, as your demonstrator. Offer expires 9/10/14.

Click here to visit my Paper Pumpkin website to sign up for your subscription. Use promo code “HALFOFF2” when checking out.

sneak peek of September Paper Pumpkin kit...check out the blackbird stamp...squeee!

sneak peek of September Paper Pumpkin kit…check out the blackbird stamp…squeee!

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sneak peek of part of the September Paper Pumpkin kit, how stinkin’ cute is this!?

I want to reward my customers who subscribe to Paper Pumpkin, so I’d like to share a few offers I have for you:

1) Purchase a 3 month pre-paid subscription, and receive a free Stampin’ Up! wood mount sized stamp case with a Paper Pumpkin label printed & inserted for you. This nifty little clear case is  perfect for storing your stamps and ink spots that you receive each month, and is just the size of a 2 disc DVD case so you’ll find it easy to store!

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2) Purchase a 6 month pre-paid subscription and receive the case described above AND a free Snail adhesive! (A $6.95 value). Most kits will require you to use some adhesive, and I’d love to set you up with some top quality Stampin’ Up! adhesive, as a thank you gift from me when you commit to a 6 month subscription. Remember, you can put your kits on hold at any time, if for some reason you’d like to spread out those six months you may do so.

3) Purchase a 12 month prepaid subscription and receive both gifts mentioned above, plus a $30 credit to spend on any current Stampin’ Up! product of your choice! This truly is a great deal…by purchasing all 12 months at once, you will save $24 vs. if you do the one month at a time subscription, plus the gifts mentioned above, plus the $30 credit! That’s a $278.09 value for $215.40…saving you $62.69! Not to mention all the amazing projects you will complete over the 12 months, plus a nice collection of stamps and ink spots that you will have collected along the way.

If you choose to subscribe monthly (this is the option I use, so I’m sure to never miss a kit), I will also give you the gifts mentioned above when you reach 3, 6, and 12 months of kits received.

And don’t forget that all of my customers have access to my Paper Pumpkin Pinterest board, where I create and gather inspiring ideas on using your kits and collect them all in one spot for easy reference. The kits are wonderful as is, but with a little creativity and sometimes a few extra supplies,  you’ll be amazed at what you can create.

Ready to start? Email me at blackbirdscraps@gmail.com and tell me if you’d like a 1, 3, 6, or 12 month pre-paid subscription. Or, you can visit the Paper Pumpkin website if you’re ready to start a regular monthly subscription. Make sure to choose me, Laura Dehnert, as your demonstrator to take advantage of the offers mentioned above.

If you have any questions check out the FAQ or contact me and I’d be happy to help you.

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(Bonus items are offered by Laura Dehnert, Independent Stampin’ Up! Demonstrator and are not sponsored by Stampin’ Up! Offers good only for customers in the United States. Images copyright Stampin’ Up!)

If you don’t think this offer is something you’d be interested in, but you know of a friend who would, please share this with them! Thank you!

Endless Birthday Wishes

Hooray! The adorable photopolymer stamp set “Endless Birthday Wishes” is back in stock after being sold out for some time. Grab yours before it’s gone again! It is $13.95 and I can see myself using it on birthday cards of course, but also Project Life pages (lots of non-birthday specific words and sentiments).

Endless Birthday Wishes (image copyright Stampin' Up! 2014)

Endless Birthday Wishes (image copyright Stampin’ Up! 2014)

 

 

It also comes in digital! Check out this first birthday poster I made for my son using My Digital Studio and the Endless Birthday Wishes digital stamps (as well as some other sets).

8x10 poster to display at birthday party, made with My Digital Studio

8×10 poster to display at birthday party, made with My Digital Studio

 

If you’d like to save on shipping I can add this to the order I’ll be placing on July 19th. Of course the digital version is available for immediate download ($9.95) and you can use it with My Digital Studio software FREE for 30 days. Intimidated by digital scrapbooking? I do one-on-one or group classes to teach you some amazing things you can create with My Digital Studio, from scrapbook pages, to cards, invitations, home decor and so much more.