Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Such a great card

Available for this month only, we have coordinating Thin Cuts for our Punny Pals stamp set! Remember, for every Punny Pals stamp set purchased Close To My Heart will donate $7 of the proceeds to Operation Smile™, a non-profit organization that provides safe surgeries to repair cleft lips and palates for people around the world. We took it upon ourselves to come up with a fun way to use this stamp set and its coordinating Thin Cuts to create something guaranteed to make someone smile! Below are step-by-step instructions to show you how to recreate this multi-layer card yourself using partially cut die cuts. Let’s dive right in, shall we?
Prepare and cut.
To replicate our card exactly, you will need the following pieces:
  • 1 standard card base
  • 3¾” x 5″ White Daisy cardstock
  • 4″ x 5¼” Pewter cardstock
  • 3¾” x 5″ New England Ivy “Sprig” paper from Beary Christmas paper packet
  • 4″ x 5 ¼ ” Pebble striped paper from Beary Christmas paper packet
  • 3¾” x 1″ ombre New England Ivy paper from Beary Christmas Picture My Life™ Cards
Thin Cuts Technique #ctmh #closetomyheart #thincuts #dies #diecuts #cardmaking #diy #wildaboutyou #animals #zooanimals #lion #monkey #tiger
Step 1. Planning the partial cut.
Using washi tape, temporarily attach the 2½” circle die onto the White Daisy cardstock piece approximately ¾” from the top. Place the Tiger die on the adhered circle die, slightly left of center, and mark (with a pencil) where the two dies intersect.
Remove the tiger die but keep the circle in place. With a ruler and pencil, draw a light line through both of the dots, running off both sides of the cardstock.
Step 2. Partially cutting the circle.
We use a Cuttlebug™ as our preferred die-cutting machine. Layer a platform and a C-size plate and align the edges. Place the White Daisy cardstock on top of this combination so that the line you have drawn is about 1/8″ below the bottom of the plate. This will put the top half of the cardstock on the plate and leave the lower half of the cardstock hanging off the plate. Adhere the card piece in place with washi tape so it will not move. Anything below the plate will not cut through.
Layer a B-size plate on top and run the paper through your die-cutting machine. You should end up with a partially cut circle, still attached on the bottom left.

Step 3. Partially cutting the tiger.
Thin Cuts Technique #ctmh #closetomyheart #thincuts #dies #diecuts #cardmaking #diy #wildaboutyou #animals #zooanimals #lion #monkey #tiger
While keeping the cardstock attached to the plate, remove the circle die. Add the tiger die where your circle is still intact, allowing a portion of the head and tail into the inside of the circle, and secure it to the cardstock with some washi tape.
Replace the B-size plate, make sure the platform and plates are aligned, and run it through the die-cutting machine.
Remove the tiger die. You will now have a portion of the tiger cut out of the inside circle. (The remainder of the inner circle may be discarded.) If there is a small area of the inner circle that has not cut through just snip carefully with scissors.
Step 4. Get Stamping!
Stamp the tiger image in place and color it with watercolor pencils.
Thin Cuts Technique #ctmh #closetomyheart #thincuts #dies #diecuts #cardmaking #diy #wildaboutyou #animals #zooanimals #lion #monkey #tiger
Step 5. Assemble the rest of the card.
Create the inner circle of the card front by cutting the layers with the 2″ circle die.
Thin Cuts Technique #ctmh #closetomyheart #thincuts #dies #diecuts #cardmaking #diy #wildaboutyou #animals #zooanimals #lion #monkey #tiger
Tip: To put the monkey in place, make two cuts of the monkey outline. When layering the shapes together, attach the front shape so that it overlaps the front of your circle window, and attach the back shape overlapping the back of the circle. This will hold the monkey securely in place.
Tip: For added dimension on your animal, make a second animal shape and, after stamping, trim out the face. Color this new layer and attach with thin 3-D foam tape.
 This Thin Cuts technique is all about versatility and dimension! Please share with us any comments or questions through the link below!
Share a Smile and happy trimming!

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Share a smile


Team Up with The Punny Pals Stamp Set to Make a Difference

From the Heart!
With the purchase of every Punny Pals stamp set, Close To My Heart donates $7 USD of the proceeds to Operation Smile™, an organisation that provides surgeries to repair cleft lips and palates for children around the world. To bring these stamp images to life, we’ve made a coordinating set of Thin Cuts dies and an exclusive card kit! The card kit includes the dies, card bases, envelopes, paper, and step-by-step instructions for creating 32 cards, and it is available at a discounted price! Create these delightful cards and use them to share smiles all around!
The Share a Smile card kit can be yours for FREE when you become a Consultant in October or when you host a qualifying party.
My Acrylix® Operation Smile™: Punny Pals stamp set
My Acrylix® Operation Smile™: Punny Pals Stamp Set
Add to Cart
Share a Smile card kit
Share a Smile Card Kit
Includes Thin Cuts — Punny Pals, Share a Smile Card Bases & Envelopes, and 10 paper sheets; stamp set sold separately
Add to Cart
Thin Cuts — Punny Pals
Thin Cuts — Punny Pals
Add to Cart
Share a Smile card bases & envelopes
Share a Smile Card Bases & Envelopes

Sunday, 24 September 2017

September Stamp of the month

September Stamp of the Month and Falling For You Packet Artwork

September Stamp of the Month artwork
12″ × 12″ Together
 My Acrylix® Feel So Blessed
 Falling for You Paper Packet
 Charcoal Cardstock
 White Daisy Cardstock
 Saffron Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Charcoal Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Falling for You Complements
 Gold Pearls
 Marvy® Uchida® LePen™ Journaling Pen

3-D Gratitude Journal
 White Daisy Cardstock
 Charcoal Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Toffee Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Saffron Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Block Alphabet — Thin Cuts
 Gold Pearls
 Cricut® Artbooking Collection

Cricut® Shapes
5″ Shift+PhotoMat2 <!> (p. 38)
1¼″ Shift+Border (p. 83)

5½″ × 4¼″ Thankful for Everything
 My Acrylix® Feel So Blessed
 Falling for You Paper Packet
 White Daisy Cardstock
 Archival Black Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Pewter Exclusive Inks™ Stamp Pad
 Gold Pearls

Thursday, 31 August 2017

National Stamping Month

Create Heartfelt Interactive Cards with This Exclusive Kit

From the Heart!
The exclusive From the Heart card kit gives you all the materials you need for creating 12 interactive cards, including an E-size stamp set with heartfelt sentiments and stamps you can layer together for exquisitely artistic cards. Available only during September, this card kit is a must have that will help you create elevated artwork from the heart.
The From the Heart card kit can be yours for FREE when you become a Consultant in September or when you host a qualifying party.

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Back to school

Free Back-to-School Scrapbook Pattern!

Free scrapbook pattern and instructions from Close To My Heart! #ctmh #closetomyheart #free #scrapbook #pattern #scrapbooking
Back-to-school season is in full swing, and we’ve got a free scrapbook pattern to help you celebrate!
Free scrapbook pattern and instructions from Close To My Heart! #ctmh #closetomyheart #free #scrapbook #pattern #scrapbooking
This pattern originally debuted with our Tinkerin’ paper collection, but we’ve revamped the instructions so they can be used with any papers for any occasion. We chose to use this pattern to document some back-to-school memories using our Enchantment Fundamental paper packet and some matching cardstock.
We also incorporated our August Stamp of the Month set, My Acrylix® School Year. This stamp set is designed to help you document both the first and last day of school. Be sure to order the stamp set now because it’s gone at the end of the month—you won’t want to be tardy on this one! And the great news is that you can get the Stamp of the Month for a super great price with a qualifying purchase. However you do the math, more crafting supplies for less money is the always the correct answer! 😉
Download the pattern below, and enjoy a little scrappin’ time!

Download Pattern

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

10 Tips to take better photos

Today’s post is an extra special treat! We’ve asked the talented Chari Pack, founder & CEO of Persnickety Prints, to share with you some tips for taking better photos on your phone. Whether you’re promoting your Close To My Heart business, taking photos for your scrapbooking, or just posting to social media, these tips are sure to take your phone photography to the next level!
10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tips
The way you present yourself, your artwork, and the products you offer has a huge impact on your business. Online sales will increase with improved product images.
Here’s how to get the best shot every time…

1. Natural Light (no flash)

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsWhen shooting with flash, the subject can be blown out and shadows disappear. With product shots, a soft shadow adds depth. Keep your flash off and set products under a window using natural light.

2. Focus (tap screen)

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsOn iPhones (and some Androids), tap the screen to focus on the subject. With the new iPhone 7S, use the portrait mode to blur out the background. With a short focal length, you’ll get that fancy dSLR camera result without the fancy camera.

3. Hold Steady & Level

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tips“Camera shake” can cause your photo to be blurry. Use steady hands or prop up your phone and use the self-timer for best results.

4. Staging (simple & clean)

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsInvest in a white poster board—it’s the perfect solution for a DIY backdrop! Wrapping paper or other fun colors can be added for dimension. Be sure your CTMH projects, cards, and layouts stand out. “Busy” photos tend to get lost in the crowd.

5. Get up close and personal!

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsDon’t be afraid to get up close to show details of the project. Shoot from different angles to focus on specific elements.

6. Pay attention to shadows

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsBe sure the shadow of your hand or camera is not in the frame. When shooting scrapbooking layouts, take the pages or photos out of the Memory Protectors™ and set the pages or photos on top. Your reader won’t notice they’re not inside, but they’ll notice the plastic glare when they are.

7. Use negative space to add text

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tipsUse the rule of thirds and push the subject to one side, leaving empty space to add a text overlay. We love using Rhonna Designs (iPhone and Android) and Adobe Post (iPhone and Desktop) to add text or a message to your photos.

8. Scale size with objects or pretty hands

10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tips
Use objects to show the actual size of your product so the viewer isn’t misled. Well manicured hands holding a product works, too!

9. Keep your phone/camera level

When shooting from above your product, be sure your camera is flat and level. Use the Snapseed App (free on iTunes and Android)  to adjust horizons if needed.

10. Take 1 minute to Edit & Enhance before sharing

Even a quick click of the enhance button in your native camera will give your photo just enough pop! We love Snapseed (free on iTunes and Android) for enhancements.
The Rhonna Designs App is not only great for text overlays: We also use it to journal and design prints for our scrapbooks!
10 Tips for Taking Better Photos on Your Phone #ctmh #closetomyheart #persnicketyprints #scrapbooking #memorykeeping #photography #tips
We can’t wait to see you put these tools into action! Additional photo tips and tricks can be found on the Persnickety Prints blog.