Tag Archives: silhouette

December Daily 2014 – Traditional Papers, Title Page, and Homemade Foundation Pages

I couldn’t find any foundation pages online this morning that matched my December Daily color scheme so I decided to make my own. I used an awesome stamp from Blinks of Life, an old Ali Edwards Technique Tuesday stamp, and some washi I got on sale after Christmas last year from Crate and Barrel to create my own foundation pages. I love them — I think the circle will be great for writing in the date.

After putting using some stamps, washi, and Becky Higgins graph paper project life cards, I realized that I didn’t want to use blue in this album and removed all the light blue papers I had originally included. I ended up with a very traditional black, white, red, green palette that I really like. A lot of the papers and embellishments are from Pink Paislee’s Merry and Bright Line which I got for 50% off from this awesome seller on ebay.

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This year, I also wanted to incorporate more white space and see through elements. Using my Silhouette and the digital cut files from last year’s Studio Calico kit, I created some diecut transparency embellishments.  DSC02989 DSC02996 DSC02992 DSC02994 DSC03001

I’m planning out the album much earlier this year than last because I’ll need to bring my homemade kit on the road during the holiday season. I feel a lot more confident in doing this album on the road after seeing all the foundation pages come together. I can’t wait for December to arrive!

Some more Hercules Love – Personalized Home Decor

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — I love the Hercules kit from Studio Calico!!! Those gorgeous flowers are in my project life spreads, on a bunch of greeting cards, and after looking through the Studio Calico gallery at Maggie Holme’s awesome layout, on a new framed layout that is part of a larger photo collage in my living room. This kit played a crucial role in convincing me that a well curated scrapbook kit is really worth the money.


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Silhouette Pixscan is Awesome!

I purchased the Pixscan sheet from DesignsbyMiriam. She had a great price, shipping was super cheap, she threw in a free sketch pen, provided tracking information, and was super responsive. Thanks Miriam!

Calibration was easy; however, as a Studio v3 nube, it took me a second to find the calibration test card. To print the calibration sheet, click on “Camera Calibration” and then “Show Calibration Test Card.” Once the dots show up, click print. To finish setup, I took a photo of the test card and then uploaded it by pressing “+.” After thinking for a second, it was ready! For those seeking more directions, I’ve read that the instructions are on page 35 of the Help section in Silhouette Studio. I just followed the helpful directions that the blogger at Paper Pulse Blog posted — below is a screenshot of the menu sidebar so you can see the button that needs to be clicked to show the test card. 

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Diecuts for Stamped Images

For my first test, I used some stamps I would never want to fussy cut. I like white borders around my images and the Pixscan feature worked brilliantly! As others have noted, once you have taken a photo of the image, you can save the cut outline and create diecuts for future stamping. The Pixscan is going to bring new life to my scraps because I can use any sized paper to stamp an image.

Pixscan image


Diecut stamped images


Sketching on Paper Pieces

I was also very excited to try the sketching function on paper scraps and other assorted pieces. I’ve found some really neat fonts recently like La Chatte a Maman and have been looking for ways to incorporate them into my crafting. Recently, I purchased my first set of metal dies for thicker materials like the cotton paper I use for letterpress. I cut out a few too many the other day and have been wondering how I might use them. Using the sketch pen Miriam sent me, I typed out the word “laugh,” resized it for the shape, welded the letters, and then sent it to the Silhouette to sketch. I love how it turned out!

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Sketched piece

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Cutting out Embossed Images

There aren’t a ton of reviews out there yet but a few have mentioned that Silhouette Studio needs a relatively dark line for the Trace function to work effectively. I decided to experiment with an embossed image and to add to the challenge by stamping on top of a lightly patterned paper. I had to play with the trace function for a bit to get a clean cut and then offset it. The outcome though was awesome. My friend and I worked on some Christmas cards earlier this year and it was such a pain to take delicate vellum diecuts, stamp them with Versamark, put on powder, and then heat set each tiny piece. With the Pixscan, I can definitely see embossing first and then cutting the embossed sentiments out en masse.

Pixscan image


Diecut embossed imageIMG_0011

One note – some of you may notice that the offset on the sun was almost perfect, while the camera offset is slightly off. This is the result of user error — when I took the photo, the paper wasn’t pressed down firmly enough and had a few bubbles. I only noticed after I imported the photo into Silhouette Studio and smooshed the paper down before I sent the cut file to my Silhouette without thinking. This error though gives you a sense of how accurately PIxscan captures the position of the image on the scan. 


Silhouette with iPad: Custom Lettering

I’ve been on a lettering kick recently – last month I took a pointed-pen calligraphy class at Meant to Be Calligraphy and I’ve been obsessed with Jenny Doh’s Creative Lettering: Techniques and Tips from Top Artists – but struggled with adding my lettering to my traditional and Project Life layouts. Finding the right ink/paper combinations with my very limited lettering supplies (I seriously have over 100 pens but only a few of them are right for the loopy lettering techniques I’m in love with), is very challenging. The Higgins Eternal black ink we got in class absorbs straight into the Becky Higgings Project Life paper. It looks okay on water color paper but as a newbie to pointed-pen and other technique-centric pens, I’m still getting used to the scratchiness. The Mister Huey’s inks work on the Project Life cards but the pointed pen part leaves weird scratchy marks for this nube….

Complaining aside, I’ve been trying to figure out ways to add personalized/custom lettering to my projects without the hassle of figuring out what ink to match with what medium and the solution seems to be the Silhouette Cameo. For the layout below, I tried some brush script techniques using a tablet, drew the image, saved it as an image file (e.g., jpg), and then cut the file out using water color paper. Voila! No special inks needed!


Then I colored the words using some Faber Castell Gelatos. My favorite part was distressing the outline of the words using the Black Soot distress marker. I originally created a harsh line, but using a water brush, I was able to blend the gelato and distress marker for a unique look. 


For the rest of the page, I used scraps from my Gelato swatches and other projects. I seem to use up a lot of my scraps in the scrapbooking process and generate a lot of scraps working on greeting cards and Project Life. I don’t scrap very much, but I’d be very curious to know if that happens to others.

The most recent Amy Tangerine/Kal Barteski woodblock stampset is perfect for so many layouts that I created a cut file so I could easily create embellishments. I used Delicata Gold ink to stamp it and then distressed the paper using Mowed Lawn and Black Soot distress pens. 

Studio Calico’s Funnel Cake Digital Stamp

Knowing that chances were slim that I’d be able to buy the stamp, I decided to purchase the digital files. We’re tiling our backsplash today so I’ve been super busy all day but when after I bought the file, I just had to see what it looked like. I quickly print-and-cut the image on vellum with my Silhouette. The image is so fun and distinctive. I used regular print settings (printer paper) and set my blade to 4. The image came out perfectly without requiring a double cut. After all these years, the precision of the Cameo cut is still so fun to watch.

I’ll definitely have to try to create projects with individual states – the California example on the product page was very inspiring for me. Since I’m from LA, it’ll be a perfect die cut for all sorts of specialized kits. Even though Studio Calico is restocking, I may not actually need to buy it because the digital stamp seems like it would be much more versatile.
funnel cake on vellum

“With Sympathy” Card Using Distress Markers

The Distress Markers never cease to amaze me. Even when the color swatch is completely uninspiring, the transformation when it’s used with water is incredible. The die cut was made out of watercolor card stock. The white background was embossed using a Lifestyle Crafts embossing folder on Stampin Up white cardstock.

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Stamp-Scan-Cut-Stamp – Digital “Die Cuts” for Stamps

I’ve mentioned a few times that I really don’t like to fussy cut and I thought I’d create a little graphic to show people what I do to create digital die cuts for my stamped images.
Stamp Scan Cut1. Stamp all images on white printer paper using Versamark ink for smooth and crisp lines.

2. Scan image on my flat bed scanner to ensure that all the proportions are right. I don’t have any evidence that using the automatic document feeder warps the image scale but using the flatbed ensures that the proportions and scale are perfect every time.

The file can be saved in any format that your Silhouette software can support. My scanner defaults to .pdf.

3. Import .pdf into Silhouette Studio. Use trace function to create cutlines and offset window to create an offset so that the cut file image is slightly larger than the stamp outline. This helps create a border for your stamps.

4. Voila!

Some may argue that it’s easier to use dies, they’re just not for me. I’ve only purchased a few dies and don’t really like them. It’s a quirk of mine but I really don’t like how my Cuttlebug folders get all cut up and I don’t even want to start figuring out the best way to store die cuts so instead I use my scanner. I keep multiple die cuts on hand for future stamping projects and save my files so I can always easily cut out some more. This technique was awesome when I used last year’s blockbuster Wplus9’s Fresh Cut Florals set.

2014 Project Life – Snippets from Weeks Two and Four

Week Two 

This week was frigidly cold. My dog wouldn’t go out the first few days for his walk. After day three, something changed and now he will play everywhere in the snow for at least 30 minutes. From a project life standpoint, I so enjoyed using the Project Life Coral Edition and seeing how well all my existing supplies and embellishments fit with it. DSC00733 DSC00735


Week Four

Early this month, I had the great fortune of finding four of the Studio Calico stamp sets that I missed out on. I had so much fun using them in my layouts this week.



Stamping, Paper Piecing, and Patience

This summer, I started seeing blog posts using WPlus9’s Fresh Cut Florals set everywhere. All the cards were so lovely and I waited a long time for the set to come back into stock. I stamped all the tiny pieces in black, scanned them in, created cut files and used my Silhouette to make a large amount of die cuts for each stamp. I thought if the pieces just needed to be stamped, I’d be more inclined to use them.

As lovely as projects may be using this layering/paper piecing method, its a lot of work even though I have pre-cut shapes! Note to self – you will only use sets like this twice a year!



Disney Embellishments

I loved using the Simple Stories Disney 6×6 paper pad — it was such a classy interpretation of the traditional Disney colors. I used the pad and some other Disney theme supplies to make some fun Disney themed pages for a gift album. The Silhouette was awesome for creating a custom-sized vellum Mickey Mouse head and the banner letters.