Monday, September 26, 2016

AE Digital Projects: Me Story Kit

Next week I'm turning 32. Someone made a comment about how young I am, and I decided that age is kind of relative. To my 10-year-old, I seem super old. :) I know a lot of people say this, but as I started getting into my thirties, I really felt like I was figuring out who I was. I felt comfortable with me.

But sometimes life throws you a curve ball and you get to test your strength and decide if you're still who you thought you were. Most of you know that my parents recently moved in with me. My dad had a major stroke and a week later my mom broke her patella and had to have surgery. They both need some taking care of, so they've moved in with me temporarily.

Needless to say, we've been doing a lot of adjusting and I've been trying to find a new normal and fall into new roles. Like caretaker, chauffeur, nurse, and even daughter. It's kind of weird living with your parents again after 15 years.

So, Ali's "Me" Story Kit was meant to be mine this month. I decided to document both the fact that I'm turning 32 and about how I'm adjusting. Kind of love the way this turned out.

I went outside, took a selfie (for a current photo), and then went to work. I used both the digital and physical Story Kits and added in a little bit of patterned paper from the Maggie Holmes Gather collection.

I super love the way the title block turned out. I used the wooden words from the physical kit mixed with some wooden numbers from Felicity Jane. Love that.

I wanted to use an enlarged photo, so I printed it at 5x7 and cropped + enlarged one of the digital 3x4 cards to make it 5x5. I also used the digital stamps to create a strip of words to add another pop of pink to the bottom of my layout. Little details like that really help pull a project together and I love how easy it is to customize the digital products.

If you've been curious about ways that you can incorporate digital products into your traditional memory keeping, I would highly suggest taking Ali's new class called Hybrid. It comes with a fabulous digital kit and I may or may not be one of the class contributors. ;)

Thanks so much for stopping by! Don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

AE Digital Creative Team: September Projects

Hey there! Today I wanted to share my Ali Edwards projects using the new digital items from her shop. There are some really good releases this month and I still want to make time to use the Hello Friends digital stamps - so good!

My first project uses the Hello Birthday digital stamps. My nephew celebrated his first birthday at our house last month and I wanted to document the way he dug right into his giant cupcake!

I added a phrase directly to my photo, lowering the opacity in Photoshop so it looks kind of chalky.

I also traced one of the "birthday" png file in Silhouette Studio and cut it out of white cardstock on my Cameo. I love the way the words ended up working together to form a title.

I used a bunch of products from past AE Story Kits, especially "First".

That chipboard piece (from Studio Calico) cracks me up and fits perfectly with Wesley's victory pose in that last photo. :)

If you want to see how this layout came together, including the Photoshop + Silhouette Studio process, check out the video below.

I also created a very simple project using the Just Thankful digital stamps. I was really feeling like I needed take a minute to write down some words of gratitude and this is something I would like to continue to create every single month with a current photo of myself.

I started with a baseball card sleeve and cut off one row of pockets. These pockets are sized to hold 2.5x3.5" cards, so I created my own journal cards (using the digital stamps) in Photoshop and sized my photo as well. You can see a little tutorial in the video below.

I simply printed the cards, filled in the information and added some sequins and Gold Stardust confetti to dress it up a bit. I also added a little 1" self-adhesive tab with the month and year. 

I added a speech bubble to the Giving Thanks card that was left over from the last Day in the Life mini kit from Ali.

Again, super simple project, but I think I would love to do this each month. I think it's really important to stop and reflect on the things that are good in my life.

I hope these projects have shown you a few ways that you can use digital products to take a hybrid approach to your next story. Thanks so much for stopping by!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Ready, Sketch, Go! Sample Sketch and Layout + Video

Hey friends! If you've been debating purchasing my newest class, Ready, Sketch, Go! Volume 2 or wondering what it's all about, I have something fun for you today.

Tracie and I decided to do a Sample Sketch and layout so you can get a little taste of the classroom content. I created a brand new sketch especially for you! This is a cross shaped design that I really love.

Here is the layout I created. I used the September 2016 "Felicity" kit from Felicity Jane.

This sketch was actually based on a layout I created for a YouTube series I created to show different ways to use Project Life cards (and other cards created for pocket scrapbooking) on layouts called "Out of the Pocket". You can watch that video here.

In the classroom, Tracie and I have listed Tips + Tricks for each sketch. Here are mine for this one...

  • This sketch is great for using paper scraps or cards created for pocketed scrapbooking.
  • Try cutting a favorite pattern in half to stretch across the layout if the piece you have isn't quite long enough (or if you just want to hoard the pretty paper!)
  • Try this sketch with different photo configurations - I talk about all of these in the process video below, as well.
    • Try swapping out the two 3x4 photos with 3x3 or 4x4 square photos.
    • Try using three photos of the same size. Just adjust your title or embellishments to fit the new spacing.
    • Try using one vertical 4x6 + one horizontal 4x6 photo. This works best if you shift the center column to the left or right of the page 
    • If you have horizontal photos, you can rotate this sketch. Just shift the placement of your title and journaling.

I've linked to all available products below. Hope you've enjoyed this glimpse into Ready, Sketch, Go! and remember that you can still get the class for the introductory rate until September 15, 2016!

Thanks so much for stopping by!


(affiliate links)

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Elle's Studio September Kit Reveal

Hey friends! The Elle's Studio September kit + extras are now live and that means lots of great inspiration over on the blog. If you've seen the sneaks on Instagram, you will know how inspiring this month's products were!

I love all of the cards in the kit this month, but I'm especially loving the die cuts. Always. SO good.

I created two layouts using the kit + extras. The first features one of this month's cut files. I enlarged it, cut it on my Silhouette Cameo, and then used it as a stencil for some colorful misting on my background. I sprinkled some embellishment down the center of the page and matched it to my mist colors. :)

The other layout I created is an 8.5x11 (a size I've been loving lately). I cut the title from a journaling card and layered up a few more cards + die cuts. I added a bit of white paint to the wood veneers for a custom look. Totally copied that idea from my fellow DT member, Nancy Damiano. Love the way it turned out!

You can see close-ups of my layouts over on the blogRemember that the kits are $9.99 today, on launch day, but go up to $11.99 after that and are only available while supplies last!

Elle's Studio is also offering free shipping this monht! USA orders $50+ use coupon SHIPUSA and International orders $75+ use coupon SHIPINT

I have a video below to show you a close up of the kit + extras so be sure to check that out. 

You can head over to Elle's shop to purchase any of these awesome new products. Let me know if you have any questions and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Ready, Sketch, Go! Volume 2 is here!

Today I am very excited to (finally) announce that the second volume of my super popular class with Tracie Claiborne, Ready, Sketch, Go!, is now available! If you follow me on social media, you know that this class has been in the works for quite a while but we had to push back the launch date because my parents both encountered serious health issues at the same time. Which we are still dealing with. Thanks to all those who sent their love and well wishes. It really touched my heart!

Anyway, here's a bit more about the class:

Ready, Sketch, Go! Volume 2 is the second installment of a wildly popular self-paced online class taught by Tracie Claiborne and Jen Schow. (You can check out the first volume here or purchase a bundle here!)
This class is packed with sketches, inspiration, and video instruction. Upon purchasing this class, you will receive immediate access to:
  • A welcome PDF with a link to the classroom
  • 15 lessons complete with 15 sketches and 30 process videos (one from each teacher) + 35 layouts to inspire you
  • A set of 16 exclusive cut files in PNG and SVG versions for use with an electronic die cutting machine
  • a 90 minute audio discussion* (similar to a podcast episode) all about how Jen and Tracie approached each sketch *coming to the classroom Thursday, September 1, 2016!
  • A PDF with full color photos of each sketch and layout + tips and tricks perfect for printing and taking to a crop & room for you to draw your own sketches
  • Access to a private Facebook group where we can discuss ideas, share projects, and ask questions
  • Email access to both instructors
And here is the little promo video for the class...

If you loved the first class, you're going to love the second volume. We are in love with these sketches and can't wait for you to dive in! 

The class is $35, but you can purchase it at a discounted rate of $30 until September 15, 2016. And if you didn't take the first volume, we've bundled them together for a super low price of $50!

Thanks so much for your support. I am consistently amazed by your kindness and generosity! Please let me know if you have any questions!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Elle's Studio August Kit Reveal

Guess what? The Elle's Studio August Kit + Exclusives are now live and that means that the design team gallery is live too, and the design team has some awesome projects to share. 

The August kit is filled with cute cards and awesome sentiments. It also has twice the die cuts, which are my fave part of the kit!

Here are a few layouts I created using this month's kit + exclusives as well as the new Work Hard stamps and journaling tags.

This layout features a few sweet moments between my daughter and nephew and I decided to use the leftover bit from the die cuts that come in the kit (to include more die cuts in the kit, they put them on two sheets and you punch them out) as a stencil. I placed it on my background and spritzed it a few times in different areas of the layout. Love that. I also lined up the Good Times Wood Veneer flags across the top and bottom.

This second layout has to be one of my faves. It's so simple, but I just love the clock stamp from the new Work Hard mini collection so much! I used it to document what my daughter has been doing on these lazy summer days that are soon coming to an end!

You can see close-ups of my layouts over in the Elle's Studio DT Gallery, as well as links to the products I used. Remember that the kits are $9.99 today, on launch day, but go up to $11.99 after that and are only available while supplies last!

I have a video below showing you the kit and exclusives so be sure to check that out. 

You can head over to Elle's shop to purchase any of these awesome new products. Let me know if you have any questions and thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, August 4, 2016

AE Digital Projects: Stuff Story Kit + July Projects

Hey there! I realized that I never shared my July Ali Edwards projects with you, so I'm excited to do so today. I also have a really cool layout using the Stuff Story Kit + a video tutorial.

Each month Ali releases a variety of digital products, usually including digital word art as well as journal cards (the August releases are SO awesome...check them out if you haven't already).


I decided to have a bit of fun with the Adventure Journal Cards and create my own patterned paper to help tell this story about a little Staycation we had this summer. I wanted to include lots of photos, so I used one enlarged photo that really encapsulated the feeling of the day on a traditional 8.5 x 11 layout on the left, and a divided 9x12 pocket page on the right with six additional photos. When I have lots of photos to include, this is the way I like to do it now.

To create my pattern, I simply shrunk down the size of the journal cards and arranged them in a pattern on an 8.5 x 11 canvas in Photoshop. Love the look of it!

My other project using the July digital products is a 12 x 12 layout about one of my favorite places. I used the Travel Messy Circles Filled digital brushes + my Cameo to create this one.

I backed each circle with a subtle patterned paper for little pops of color. How cool is that crane, by the way?!


I love this story kit. I think I say that every month, but seriously, this one is awesome. I subscribe to the physical kit, but get the digital kit as well. This month, I decided to tell the story of seven seemingly random objects in our home and talk about where they came from. Love that the kit prompted me to document something I wouldn't have otherwise.

I took photos of the objects against a white background (I use two pieces of white foam core) and added them to the front of these little tag cards that I print and cut using my Silhouette Cameo.

Each one opens up to tell the story about the object. This was such a fun way to tell this story. I created a video tutorial on how to create the printed tag cards. It also includes a layout share where I talk about the stories behind the stuff.

There's still time to get your hands on the Stuff Story Kit, so be sure to check it out if you are interested. I've said it a million times, but these kits have changed the way I tell my stories in such a good way! I can't recommend them enough.

Thanks for stopping by today!