How to make a vellum mat for your digital scrapbook page

Weeks ago, I shared layouts from JB Studio Creative Team using You’re Rad Collection. All the layouts are awesome, but there’s one that got people’s attention on Instagram.

jennifer

How cool is this layout!

I love the photos on this page, but something in special caught my attention. How she added a vellum mat to her background, it makes the layout interesting without looking busy. Her photos are full of colors and details and the artsy paper she used as the background would distract our eyes from them, so the vellum mat was the perfect solution for this awesome digital scrapbook page.

So, today I’m sharing a quick tutorial to show you how to create a vellum effect that can solve some design issues and add a special touch to your layouts.

How to make a vellum mat to your digital scrapbook page

P.S.: This tutorial is made using Photoshop CS3, but I believe the steps are the same for Photoshop Elements (PSE) and other versions of Photoshop.

Step 1 | Open the template or create a new 3600 x 3600 pixel file. I’m using the same template Jen used to make her page. When you’re using a template, remember to duplicate your image. You don’t want to mess up the original file, right?

vellum_01

Step 2 | Choose the patterned paper you want and clip to the proper layers. You will notice the spot for journaling is too hard to read because of the patterned paper. I chose the Hot Cocoa Collection to scrap my new habit of drinking tea.

vellum_02

Step 3 | I prefer to use a solid paper from the kit because it has texture. I resize it to the size I want. Hold the Shift key while resizing to make all sides even. I chose the lighter solid paper from the kit so it the page is coordinated.

If you prefer, you can create the mat using the rectangle tool. It is important to hold the Shift key to make it a square.

vellum_03

Step 4 | If you’re using the template, copy the drop shadow from a paper element to make all shadows look uniform, then paste it to the shape layer. If you’re creating a new layout on your own, add the shadow as you like.

vellum_04

Step 5 | To add the transparent look, change the fill rate until you like the way it looks. As I want to add journaling to my page, I made the fill 80%. If I was not going to add journaling, I would make it lower than 70% to show more of the patterned paper underneath it.

vellum_05

And it’s done. You can use the same technique and create any vellum elements or details to your layout. Have fun!

 

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21 Practical Tips To Have A Joyful And Productive Week

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The last trimester of the year can get a bit overwhelming. We wanna finish things we started, there is the preparation for the holidays, some of us are getting ready for holiday trips. If you’re a bit like me, you’re already thinking about what you wanna do next year. Sometimes, it’s too much and if we don’t give ourselves time to recharge and relax, we may end up getting sick or releasing our stress on people we love.

Having that in mind, I gathered a collection of practical tips to make your weeks less stressful and to help you live more in the present, bringing more purpose and joy to your days. These are things I tried myself, some I still do, some I am in process of creating the habit. I added a brief takeaway of my own experiences, too.

21 Practical Tips To Have A Joyful And Productive Week

1| Wake up early
I’ve been a night owl my whole life. When I started working at home I noticed that when I stayed up late, I wasn’t very productive on the following day so I started waking up early and I was surprised by how much it improved my humor, concentration, and productivity.

2| Start every day with gratitude
A mentor once told me to go outside, look up and thank every new day. This brings a smile to my heart every time I do.

3| Have a 2-minute creative visualization
In addition, he told me to spend a few minutes to imagine my day unfolding, seeing all things I wanna do running smoothly.

4| Make your bed
Seeing the bed made and organized gives me energy and motivation to have things done.

5| Have Tea
There are endless options and they are natural healers. I started drinking lemon balm tea some months ago, it relaxes me when I’m feeling stressed or overwhelmed. I also like to drink it before going to bed.

6| Focus on one thing at a time
Multi-tasking is harmful to our productivity and mental health. Whenever I remember something when I’m working on a task or project, I make note to take action later. Unless it is really urgent and cannot be held for another time, don’t switch tasks.

7| Batch activities
When I’m setting the following week I determine one afternoon to run errands and do everything I need out of the house. I have that feeling of accomplishment when I get home and I see I took care of everything I needed out of the house.

8| Unclutter your work/craft space
I spend less than 5 minutes every day to unclutter and organize before I start working/crafting. I also do a 15-minute unclutter and organization every other week to see if something needs to be donated, thrown away, replaced or bought.

9| Unclutter your inbox
I read important emails every day, they are from customers, store staff, partners or courses I’m taking. (I don’t use emails to contact family). Then I determine one day of the week to read other e-mails that are usually newsletters from bloggers and businesses I follow. I spend from one to three hours depending on what these emails are about, I delete the others. I also unsubscribe from one or two newsletters every week. It seems like my ability to subscribe is much more developed than my ability to unsubscribe because e-mail starts piling up. LOL

10| Draw and/or journal
I give myself time and space to do something I love without second intentions, only for me. It’s usually drawing or journaling because these two things fill my heart with joy.

11| Watch less television
I like to watch movies and series a lot, but when I started doing more of other things I love as drawing, journaling, singing, dancing, reading and crafting I felt happier and more relaxed so I try to find balance when spending time doing things I love.

12 | Challenge your creativity with side projects
I’ve been adding side projects to my life and they bring a lot of happy moments. I work doing something I love, but sometimes having deadlines and expectations adds a bit of pressure to the whole thing. The side projects empower my creativity consequently my work improves.

13 | Do the hardest tasks first
This is more like a note to self. I know I should stop procrastinating those hard tasks, because when they’re done I will feel relieved.

14 | Stop eating at your desk
Another note to self. Sometimes I get so involved in projects I’m doing that I get off for all other things and I know that taking the time to eat is healthier and very important.

15 | Get quality sleep
This is so important. I noticed I wasn’t sleeping enough when  I started tracking my sleeping time with an app. After a few days of tracking I realized I needed to improve my sleeping time. I try to sleep 7 hours every night and I avoid watching, reading or listening things that can get me scared or stressed at night, that makes my sleeping hours more relaxed.

16 | Ask for guidance
When I go to bed I take a glass of water with me, I put it next to a crystal. I close my eyes, give thanks for the awesome day I had and ask for guidance and wisdom to deal with any situations I may face the following day. Then I go to sleep. In the morning, I give thanks for the energized water and drink it. That’s been amazing, I feel energized and I have much more clarity since I started this ritual.

17 | Meditate
This is a habit I’ve been struggling to create, I do it for weeks and then I stop doing it, but I can see the difference when I meditate. I am usually calmer, more motivated and focused.

18 | Listen to mantras and meditation songs
I listen to mantras songs from youtube while I’m working, drawing or crafting. They make me feel more present, happier, calmer and motivated.

19 | Take time off
I didn’t use to give myself time off and it always ended up being harmful for me. I used to get sick or so tired that I needed something between two to three days to recover. Now, I give myself time to just do whatever I feel like doing, I don’t have a specific time for that, some weeks it may be a chunk of time every day, some weeks it’s one full day, it depends on my level of energy, excitement or anxiety. The best is finding what fits your lifestyle and schedule.

20 | Do things that work for you
I usually start something following someone’s path, so I can experiment. After a few tries, I try to follow my intuition and do things that work for me. Trying to follow trends adds pressure and that’s something I do my best to avoid.

21 | Show appreciation
I show my family I love them every day through messages or attitudes. I try to remind myself to do that with my parents, friends and other important people in my life whenever I have the chance.

I hope these gives you the motivation to shake things off and live a week with purpose and joy, that’s the goal, right?

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Creative Team Inspiration: Bedtime Stories Collection

Weekends are great for photographing moments with the family and also scrapping the photos and stories you’ve been wanting to tell. If you find yourself in a creative block or if you want to see how you can use products you bought. Here’s your first stop for some scrapping inspiration.

Today, I’m sharing a collection of layouts made with Bedtime Stories Collection and a few of my thoughts and takeaways on each one. I hope you also get inspired to scrap this weekend.

bts-michelle
Template used from JDoubleU 11 Pack

I love how Michelle added a lot of themed elements in a harmonious way. A good rule for that is resizing them. The lighting and angle of her photos are great. I also like that she used the word art sticker as the title.

bts-tinci

You’re gonna see a lot of sleeping babies and toddlers in this post. That’s why this one by Tinci caught my attention. She scrapped grown ups relaxing. I always love Tinci’s clusters and layers of papers, I also love patterned paper as the backgorund.

bts-heidib
Template used from JDoubleU 11 Pack

Heidi has a new grandson in her family, how cute he is! I like how she focused on his photo, adding only a few elements. I also like that she frames her page with a dark blue paper.

bts-dodie
Template used from JDoubleU 12 Pack

Can’t avoid smiling when I see this page. Love that close-up photo. Love that she created a card using one of the patterned papers and the sleeping bear instead of adding a second photo. The Ombre paper always adds so much interest to the page.

bts-em

Em is very great at scrapping off-themed pages and I love that because it shows me how versatile my products are and that’s something I aim for. As a scrapper, I like to have versatile products that I can use more than once or twice. Back to Em’s page, what can I say… I love to see her family adventures scrapped, I like that she kept her photos as the central point even though there are so many layers of papers, the size of her photos make them pop from the pieces of paper.

bts-alane

Alane surprised me with this beautiful layout because she didn’t use any of the blues from the kit. I would never imagine a page only with the whites and yellows. Her photo is so adorable and the dark background pops from the whites and yellows. Love it!

bts-em2

Em also scrapped a page following the kit theme and what I love the most here is that she added journaling, I love to see family stories being told. I like that she used the books of the kit to show that he was studying, so she kept all the other themed elements out of the page.

bts-theresaTemplate used from JDoubleU 13 Pack

I love this template, it’s one of my faves from the newest in the store. What I like the most here is that she added the cloud patterned paper and it created a fun frame to the page with the flowers on the top. I also like that she added the pompoms and sheep among the flowers, they add so much interest.

bts-kimTemplate used from Incredible Life 8 pack

Kim used a template with lots of paper pieces under the photos, so choosing the lighter papers was perfect to make her photos stand out since they are a bit darker which set the mood for the theme. I know not every scrapper likes pages full of things, but I always get delighted seeing every detail when I see a page like this. Love it!

bts-debbieTemplate used from JDoubleU 14 pack

Debbie’s journaling is so true, “nothing is more precious than a sleeping infant.” This picture is perfect and its neutral colors are a great win, because it will match pretty much any kit you try to use. I love the patterned paper she chose for matting the page, it reminds me of a blanket. Lovely how she added a lot of details, but her photo is the focal point.

bts-sherriTemplate used from JDoubleU 14 pack

I guess every mother feels like this when watching their babies sleep, right? I remember I used to watch my daughter sleep with a feeling of amazement about life until she was 10. LOL I like that the artsy paper she chose for the background matches the colors in her photo. The yellow and dark blue in papers and elements give a great contrast.

All products mentioned in this post are on sale

Bedtime Stories Collection Bundle – find individual packs at the shop.
November Templates Bundle – find individual packs at the shop.
Incredible Life 8 Templates

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If you like this post, help me touch others by pinning the image above and sharing with other creatives that could benefit from it. Thanks so much.
Remember to sign up for my newsletter to get the latest from the blog and shop, exclusive freebies and  special coupons. Subscribe here.

Creative Team Inspiration: Bounty of Blessings Kit

Friday is a good day to get inspired for a future scrapping time, right? Weekends are great for photographing moments with the family and also scrapping the photos and stories you’ve been wanting to tell. If you find yourself in a creative block or if you want to see how you can use products you bought. Here’s your first stop for some Friday inspiration.

Today, I’m sharing a collection of layouts made with Bounty of Blessings Kit and a few of my thoughts and takeaways on each one. I hope you also get inspired to scrap this weekend.

bob_lo-biancka

I like how Biancka leaves plenty of white space in her pages. Placing everything in the edge gives so much interest to the page. A good design rule is not centering your focal point, when you take it anywhere off the center, it becomes much more interesting. This rule also works for photos.

bob_lo-heidis

Heidi caught my attention with this page. Layouts with large photos are always so awesome. I think the small framed photo of the cabin made it even more special because you have two perspectives of the same place. So clever.

bob_lo-heidi

Heidi made the best background choice to go with all the colors of the patterned papers. The patterned papers worked perfectly to make her photo stand out because her photo is very light. Every scrapbooker should know how to balance the light on their photos. We don’t need to be experts on photo treatment, but fixing light/shadows is a great way to make our photos better.

bob_lo-claudia

I’m crazy about cluttered layouts. I know this style doesn’t get much of scrappers’ attention, but I love when there’s so much to see that I could spend an hour looking at every detail. Okay, I know I’m exaggerating here… one hour is too much for a page, but I could spend an entire hour in a gallery for sure. hehe What I think is very cool about Claudia’s layout is that she added 3 clusters of flowers – odd numbers are always more interesting – and they are placed in a triangle shape which is another great design rule.

bob_lo-kristen

It’s a very good start that Kristen’s photos have colors that match the kit, it makes the scrapping much easier. As she chose a dark paper for the background, her choice of flowers and leaves were perfect, because they are not too dark and it creates a good contrast.

bob_lo-em

Em used an ombre paper for her background, you can never go wrong with them, they add an interesting touch to the page. The main colors she chose match some colors in her photo what gives the page a great look. She also created a great balance by adding bits and pieces at the right and the left side of the page.

bob_lo-jerilie

I love Jerilie’s family photos, they’re always dressed in the same colors or shades and that makes the page stand out. I like how she chose the aqua and yellow to go with the photos and added small accents, making the photos her focal point.

Throw Back Thursday Special

Bounty of Blessings is a kit I love and it’s our special feature this week on Throw Back Thursday. Click here to see it and get a huge discount coupon.

Clever collections ideas for your bullet journal

Hey, there!

As you know, I’m experiencing a different kind of planner this year. It’s a mix of planner and journal and it gives me room not only to track my goals and daily tasks, but also to stay focused and motivated because I am always adding affirmations, gratitude notes, focus notes to myself, etc… The best part is the flexibility I have to change things along the way. That is working so well for me.

As a newbie I’m always searching for ideas and inspiration. The first place I visit is instagram under #planwithmechallenge tag, I usually find great stuff and can interact with the other journallers, besides that it can lead me to blogs and websites for more information.

Something I love about bullet journal is the concept of collections. As an addicted to lists, collections really attract me.

What are collections?

They are lists of things that are related by a common theme or purpose. Collections are great for organizing specific lists such as shopping list or reading list, classes, projects…

pin-post-collections
pic by anitacanita via Foter.com CC BY-NC-ND

Here are my favorite collections (so far):

  • Things I wanna do before… ~ This is one that I’m passionate about. Keep a list of things you want to do before a certain age, before the baby arrives, before you get married… and you’re more likely to have a blissful life doing what matters the most to you. Take a look at mymessybujo’s collection of 30 before 30.
  • Books I wanna read ~ I always get book reccomendations from webinars, blogs, events, friends and how can I manage to remember all that? Perfect collection!
  • Dates ideas ~ When I saw this idea over at xicancri I knew I wanted to start my own. Being married for almost 14 years can lead us to a boring routine, finding something interesting to do when we have some time alone will help us have better moments together.
  • Wanderlust ~ Create a list of places you would like to visit. Next time you have some time off or on vacation, use this list to choose where to go and start planning your trip.
  • Monthly Favorites ~ Everyone in the digiscrapbooking community knows Lynnette’s monthly pages of favorites. If you are a scrapper, you can have a collection as notes for your future pages. If you’re not, you may find it very interesting to read your past lists months or years after. What about having faves collections for the whole family?
  • Stories I wanna scrap ~ It’s another one for scrapbookers. I like to keep a list of pages I want to make. Something happens and you want to make sure you add that to your family album, but you can’t make a page at the moment, add to your collection for the next time you’re in your scrapbooking time. It’s a good way to keep a log of unfinished projects, too.

I hope you like the ideas. Do you have any other favorite collection? Share in the comments.


May you experience a lot of happy moments this year.
Hope you have an amazing creative day.
siggie