Wednesday, November 28, 2012

December Daily Cover and American Crafts Christmas Cards

I had some cards on the American Blog up last Thursday using the Kringle and Co collection.  This collection is so full of patterns and embellishments...the only problem is picking which to use.

So I picked an embellishment for each card, then focused on color combinations, dimension, and texture.  

This card did not start out this way...that entire bottom of the clustered embossed tree and embellishments was removed from a failed card.  Really didn't think it had any hope, then I had a lightbulb moment...I love the end result of a pocket for the tag...LOVE the reindeer.
I will be having a video up on the Carta Bella blog on Dec. 20th showing how I made these elongated hexagons.  I used them here on the hexagon shaped card that I also designed in Silhouette Studio...masked and misted with the negative sheet first, then layered the gave the background a little more texture.  For the card base, I just opened two hexagon shapes in Silhouette Studio, overlapped them a little, and welded them to make the card shape.
Lots of layering on this one...the design of the die cut was the start of the rest of the layering.
A much more simple design, but I love it...he looks more like a deer, not sure...but I just love the look of him and the knitted look of the tree and the snowflakes.  And notice the background paper...I used every bit of that it.
I started on my December Daily for this year.  Decided to go with a Studio Calico Handbook with the chevron pattern.  I painted one layer of gesso, then a layer of Martha Stewart's Pearl acrylic paint (my favorite, it is shimmery, but you can't tell from the photos).
I was planning on leaving the cover for last because the covers are usually the hardest for me to do.  But when I pulled out some of the die cuts from American Crafts Kringle and Co, they were perfect...
I had the cut bow from the Silhouette leftover from another glad I didn't throw it away.
I loved the simplicity of the front with just the added sparkle from the ribbon, the color from the twine, all from Kringle and Co, but wanted a little more used My Mind's Eye washi tape from the Ruby collection for the spine, then used an October Afternoon label as the "rug" under the sticker die cut tree from Kringle and Co.  Those Thickers are also Kringle and Co.
So very simple on the outside...on the inside, I'll be using the different pocket page protectors similar to Project Life and will use a mix of Kringle and Co from American Crafts, Make it Merry from October Afternoon, and Christmas Cheer from Lily Bee.
I've been cutting lots and lots on the Silhouette just to have some designs on hand.  Looking forward to my second December Daily...this is what I've learned from doing my first one:
  • For me having the supplies and some cuts from Silhouette ready works.  Preparing pages ahead of time doesn't come easy for me.  I have to have the photos to start.  It's like doing a Project Life spread without the photos, can't do it.
  • The format of a divided protector is less intimidating then a full scrapbook page.
  • Last year I did the December Daily literally day by day, took a picture everyday, that went into DD for that day.  That...was the stressful part.  I'm going to take pictures just like last year, but not worry about them going exactly on that day.
  • Remember to just take pictures, with your mobile phone or your camera.  Be mindful of what is around you (my number one reason why I love Project Life and December Daily).  Think about what you want to remember in the details.
    • Look for details: (I will credit Ali Edwards for some great ideas, and then I just ran with them and made them my own)
      • decorations in the city/town you live in
      • your decorations both inside and outside
      • with our little, girl, I also take pictures of her decorations
      • your childs' crafts projects (include them in your DD if you can, or take a picture and then print have it printed off to the size you need)
      • your pets by the decorations
      • the radio station that plays Christmas music all season long, take a picture of your car radio with the station displayed or take a picture of a favorite Christmas CD cover
      • the traffic, oh yes, take a picture of the long lines at the mall or post office
      • my favorite from last year was taking my big camera to the mall and taking pictures of displays, Santa, and the decorations...and...the shopping experience
      • baking/cooking - and/or including special recipes
      • wrapping
      • shopping online - take a screen shot or use your mobile phone
      • wish lists
      • Letters to Santa
      • YOU - last year I took a picture of my sparkly if you need to lose weight like myself, take pictures of the parts of you that you do like ;)
      • the family picture(s) for the holidays
      • your Christmas card
      • opening presents before and on Christmas (we like to open little gifts leading up to Christmas like hot chocolate, PJs, Christmas related items)
      • at your work.  I know I would have tons of crazy pictures from my office.  Take the little details like the decorations and if you have office parties
      • meeting friends and/or family and exchanging presents
      • reading Christmas stories or having Bible readings with the family
      • church activities (remember it doesn't have to be people, it can be the little details of the flier for the program, the decorations, the doors to the church, etc.)
      • community events - we have a couple of parks here that will have special lights and entertainment during the season
      • Starbucks - need I say more...the red cup include it, or ask for a small mini one to include, the snack bag, take a picture of that yummy peppermint brownie cake pop...before you eat it or it would be cute with a bite taken out of it ;)
      • If you have a DSLR and a nice lens, do this technique  I will have to have a separate post explaining how I got it to work 
      • TV Christmas specials...take a mobile phone picture of the screen...get up close to take it and take a few to pick the best one
      • Order online?  Take pictures of the packages coming in
Hopefully this gets you thinking and then you can run with these ideas and start taking lost of photos this season.  One last thing...about the ordinary days with nothing Christmas related, include those as well.  I am doing Project Life, so I will not have those as much in my December Daily as I did last year.  You will love looking back on your DD.

One last tip...we all do it...don't compare your DD to others.  Just like scrapbooking, DD is personal and meant for you and your family...make it and do it like YOU like it.

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