Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Today is the Day for Studio J

I have been talking about it for months, it has been advertised in our idea book since the fall, and I have played with it, creating 10 layouts of my own!  It is finally here for YOU!  You can begin creating today (http://mrowley.myctmh.com/).  Don't worry, it costs you nothing to begin your layouts.  Be sure to create an account and your layouts will be saved for 90 days.  When you decide your layout is the way you like it, you can purchase it.  Need more information?  Read the information below (summarized by the wonderful Karen P.), just go to the site and play or contact me

Don't forget to leave a comment on my blog, sign up as a follower or sign up for email updates (email me to let me know) and you will be put in a drawing for a free 12x12 Linen Album.  Perfect for your Studio J and classic layouts.  (Drawing May 1st.)

Questions and Answers:

What is Studio J™ Design Software?

Studio J™ is free online scrapbooking design software brought to you by Close To My Heart. Studio J helps you easily create custom-printed two-page layouts using our foundational scrapbook patterns, exclusive color palette, and themed designs all delivered in 12" × 12" custom prints ready for your albums. It’s a snap!

Is Studio J easy to use?

Studio J software is extremely intuitive and easy to use. The program walks you through five steps that include:

uploading your photos;

choosing your desired themed kit;

selecting an exclusive layout pattern;

adding photos, embellishments, titles, and journaling;

and purchasing custom-printed layouts ready for a cherished album.

I love Close To My Heart products. Will Studio J use the same great papers, patterns, colors, and embellishments?

Of course! If you love Close To My Heart’s scrapbooking philosophy, then you will love Studio J.

Do I need to download any software to my computer to use Studio J?

Not at all! You only need an Internet connection, and then you simply log in to your Consultant’s MyCTMH website to get started. Feel free to design to your heart’s content—you are not required to buy anything or provide any personal information to get started!

Can I save what I am working on and come back to it later?

You bet! You can create a customer profile that allows you to save and return to a project in progress at a later time. Your active projects will be saved for up to 90 days, giving you plenty of time to work on them. You extend that timeline for your active projects by 90 days each time you make a purchase, and your purchased projects will remain archived for one full year after purchase.

Do I need a printer that can print 12" × 12" pages to use Studio J?

No. Your Studio J layouts are not available for you to print from a home computer. In fact, we take care of the printing for you. When you purchase your designed layouts, we print and ship them quickly and directly to you using only top quality printing technology and archival-quality papers.

What is the price?

You are not charged a thing until you order your custom prints. The price per printed two-page layout is $12.95. We also offer some fantastic rewards for larger orders. You can receive FREE Memory Protectors® to protect your layouts in your albums, and FREE shipping/handling based on the number of layout prints you purchase in a single order as follows:

For 5–9 layout purchases: You’ll receive a pack of 5 Memory Protectors FREE!

For 10–20 layout purchases: You’ll receive FREE shipping/handling PLUS a FREE pack of 5 Memory Protectors for every 5 layouts in your single order.
When can I begin creating with Studio J?


Have fun!

Monday, April 26, 2010

My School Days

When I look back, I have found that I have been a scrapbooker for much of my life. The summer after my freshman year in college, I went home to work and in my spare time, I put together a scrapbook of my childhood/teen "formal" photos with rubber cement. My mom had painted (she was an amazing artist) a scrapbook cover for this "album" but this project never got put together. So, I pulled out the pages and using the versatility of the Miracle kit redid these photos.

As I scrapbooked these photos again, I found myself appreciating some different thoughts and memories about my childhood. In my elementary school photos, with the exception of two of the outfits, my mom sewed all of those clothes I was wearing. The other two were hand - me - downs. In my junior high and high school photos, I had sewn the outfits I was wearing.

My parents said that I could get my ears pierced when I was 10. I noticed my pierced ears in my 5th grade photo. I made the same age requirement for my girls and they both now have their ears pierced, a rite of passage maybe.

Scrapbooking in retrospect has given me a fresh perspective on my life, the gifts, the growth, and who I have become. I look forward to re-scrapping some other photos in the future!

Friday, April 23, 2010

New Art & Soul Episode

Live your Dreams is the title of the latest ART & SOUL episode you can view on my website.  The technique featured is "puddle pads" using reinkers.  This technique is a great way to add color to your creative projects, faster, simpler, and easier.  Also featured, "You Rock" paper packet, glitter rub ons and, Jeanette shares a piece of artwork she created for the wall of her studio.  The inspiration has me thinking about a wall hanging I can create for my newly painted living room.  Enjoy this episode.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

So Much Exciting News!

It is finally here!  News from our corporate office "We are excited to announce the official customer launch of Studio J™ on Tuesday, April 27 at 8:00 am (MDT)."  That means, beginning next week, you can play with the newest and greatest Close to My Heart Product!  No purchase is necessary to try it out the easy step by step process of creating beautiful layout.

Step 1:  Upload your photos anytime during the design process

Step 2:  Choose the kit that coordinates with your photos and theme

Step 3:  Choose a pattern from a seledtion of patterns in our Cherish and Imagine books. 

Step 4:  Personalize this layout by adding titles, journaling, embellishments, paper and distressing. 

Step 5:  When you are completely satisfied with the layout you have created, purchase the layout to add it to your 12 x 12 album.

Here is a layout I have added to my scrapbooks from Studio J.

The paper pack is Jingle from the Fall/Winter 2009 Idea Book.  I will be scrapbooking another set of holiday photos with the same paper, using classic scrapbooking.  I look forward to seeing them side by side!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Miracle Has Arrived

Join the National Scrapbooking Month celebration in May with this special Miracle kit offer. It's a beautiful spring-themed scrapbooking kit that includes new, coordinating B&T Duos® die-cut papers, B&T Duos, Irresistibles™ chipboard die-cuts, My Stickease® adhesive images, Flip Flaps™, plus more favorite accessories and papers. Included is an instruction brochure for easily creating two beautiful two-page layouts—with no stamping required! You can get a Miracle scrapbooking kit FREE or at a discount during the campaign. Here are the details:

From April 15  –May 31 or while supplies last:
Purchase the kit outright for $19.95/$23.50 (CC1009).

Place a minimum order of $40 (excluding Studio J™ orders) and purchase the kit for only $10 (CC1009A).

Place a minimum order of $60 (excluding Studio J orders) and purchase the kit for only $5 (CC1009B).

Host a Home Gathering with minimum sales of $300 and receive a kit FREE! (CC1009C)

From May 1–31, sign up as a new Consultant between and receive a kit FREE

For more details about the kit contents, follow this link.  Watch for my artwork and ideas using this kit in upcoming posts. 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Fell off the Blog Log

My intent was to up my blogging this month and share loads of artwork with you.  Well, intentions were good but I have fallen off and am just getting back to it.  So, with nothing more to say, here's some new art and items I have been playing with. 

April Stamp of the Month Flower Pot set.  I used Bella paper packet and Helen Onulak's technique she shared for coloring the shutters and window box.  I used a blending pen and marker for coloring the flowers.  The background was random stamped with the smallest flower bunch to add more interest to this paper.  I am looking forward to sharing these techniques when we make this card in Sultan at the Senior Center today. 

Just a reminder, you can get this stamp of the month until April 30th and with a minimum purchase, you can earn it at a discount or even for FREE.  Visit my website to shop or contact me for more information. 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Senior Executive Manager! Toot Toot!

Yes, that is me tooting my own horn.  Just as I was headed out the door this morning, I got a call from the CTMH corporate office congratulating me on my promotion to the next level!  Yippee!  And, I admit, I was a little surprised!  I have been working toward becoming a Director, but there is a step in between where I was, Executive Manager and where I am working to be.  I had completely forgotten about that step. 

The lesson here for me was, don't forget the baby steps.  Sometimes I get discouraged because I can't "work my business" like I would like to or because when I do, I don't see immediate results.  Baby steps my friends, baby steps.  (Really, I am talking to myself here!) 

So what is a Senior Executive Manager? 

It means that I have a wonderful group of customers and friends who have supported me for 8 years as I have grown in this business. I am so grateful to each and everyone of you who have shared in this business by purchasing and using CTMH products, by sitting around the crop table with me each month and sharing your stories, and by being a friend. You are all awesome! Thanks so much for everything!

It means that I have at least 13 wonderful, active consultants who work with me to share this great company, their products and inspiration.  (I don't know exact numbers at the moment because the monthly reports are posteded on the 15th.)  I have others that a junior consultants who do the same but at a different monetary level!  I love them all!

It means that I get a pay raise!

It means that I get a promotion certificate, my name published in the Ribbon, a phone call from the corporate office, a CTMH apron with my name on it, and free registration for leadership day at our annual convention!  Have I mentioned that I love this company? 

I will post a photo of me and my new apron after I get it. 

And now off to celebrate!

Friday, April 9, 2010

More altering for dimensional elements

I just love our My Creation Memory Keepers.  I have lost count of how many boxes I have decorated and given as gifts.  They are so much fun to make!  I made this one for my expected niece, scheduled (can you schedule a birth?) to arrive in late May!  I learned something new!  Using the CTMH Bonding Memories Glue is the easiest and best way to adhere the paper to the box.  It worked like a charm. 

I also used a combination of paper packets, Topstitch and Magic Moments, to create the color scheme to match the nursery.  The letters that spell her name were created with dimensional elements, heat embossing and sponging to get the polka dot affect.  See below for the step by step process. 

First, the supplies you need include:  dimensional elements of your choice.  I love the CTMH product because they are white!  An easy base to start with.  Add Spot on Backgrounds stamp set, Versamark ink, White or Clear embossing powder, Craft Heater, Craft tray (shown in blue in following photo), colored ink of choice, sponge. 

First, use your versamark ink to stamp the desired "texture" onto the letter.  It is ok to stamp on a couple of letters because the ink will stay moist to accept the embossing powder. 

Set the letter in the craft tray, sprinkle liberally with white embossing powder, and tap off the extra.  The craft tray makes it easier to return the excess powder back into the container for future use!  It has a small "funnel" mouth at one end for easy pouring. 

Using the craft heater and a small pointed tool like the paper piecer or embossing tool to hold the letter in place, begin heating the letter until you see the embossing powder change from a dull to a shiny look.  Make sure to move the heater all over the letter to emboss all of the "texture" image. 

This is what the letter looks like after the heating.  You can even stop here for a fun texture for your letters.

To add color contrast, sponge the ink over the letter and continue until you get the color coverage you like.  You can then wipe the letter with a tissue and the embossed "texture" will come cleans and show the contrast of the background. 

This is what your final product looks like.  Now get out your dimensional elements and give it a try!  I would love to hear your ideas and thoughts about how this worked for you!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Snow Play from 2008-09 Winter

Although we didn't get much snow this winter, I enjoyed reliving the plethora of snow we had last year!  And without the tricky driving!  These pages are scrapbooked using the "Stardust" paper packet and Outdoor Mini Medley.  I love how it turned out, the contrast of the blues in the paper and white of the snow! 

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Color Challenge

There is a new blog in the world...probably one of thousands that are started each day.  It is called Heart 2 Heart Challenges and it is a Close to My Heart Consultant design team.  So, I thought I would give it a try.  Haven't done to many challenges in my creative time.  Sometimes it is a challenge to find time to create but with CTMH products and some inspiration from these wonderfully creative ladies, I think I will try to stretch myself a bit.

The first challenge was a color challenge. 

My first thought was to use the August Stamp of the Month for 2010!  Yes, we just received our new idea books for the summer months (coming to you in May) and the set of stamps.  So, here it my card. 

The pattern was inspired by our how to book Wishes, "Up in the Corner".  I used Twitterpated Paper Packet x 7118b, Sweet Leaf Ribbon Rounds z1125, Basic Buttons z1206, and in addition to the ink colors in the challenge, I added Goldrush for the two step stamping of the flower.  The stamp set, which will be available August 1st - 31st, Something Splendid D1424.  You can get it for a great discount and even for Free! 

To see other results from this challenge, visit the blog here, and then click on the individual names of those who have participated.  Enjoy the inspiration and maybe even give it a try!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Miracle of Spring

Spring is here and National Scrapbooking Month is beginning to show its buds!  Beginning April 15th, CTMH will have a special paper kit available to celebrate this event.  MIRACLE is a spring inspired, easy to assemble scrapbooking kit featuring crystal blue, sweet leaf and bamboo colors with floral and butterfly images.  No stamping is required but the kit contains embelishments, chipboard and an easy to follow cutting guide to make two 2 page layouts.  Here's a sneak peek!

How do you get your paper crafting fingers on one of these kits, you ask?  Well, there are several ways, of course.  Beginning April 15-May 31, while supplies last:

First, you can buy it for $19.95. 
Second, you can buy it for $10 with any $40 purchase
Third, you can buy it for $5 with any $60 purchase
Fourth, you can get it for free when you host a gathering that totals $300
Fifth, sign up to be a consultant in May 2010 and it will be included in your kit for free!

How will you get one?  Contact me today to get yours!

Miracle Kit Contents

5 – Colonial White Cardstock

1 – Bamboo Cardstock

1 – Floral B&T Duos® Paper

1 – Stripe B&T Duos® Paper

1 – Crystal Blue Circle B&T Duos® Die-Cut

1 – Sweet Leaf Bracket B&T Duos® Die-Cut

1 – 6" × 12" My Stickease® Assortment

1 – 6" × 9" Irresistibles™ Chipboard Die-Cuts

1 – Mini-Medley Accents Colonial White Collection

12" Colonial White Waxy Flax

3 – 4" × 6" Memory Protectors® Flip Flaps™

2 – Sponges

1 –Brochure

Friday, April 2, 2010

Eighth Anniversary Gift: Linen

You gotta love the internet.  A little research shows that the anniversary gift for the eighth year is linen!  That is so awesome!  So I am giving away a 12 x 12 linen album of your color choice for free!  How can you enter to win? 

Current color options include black, cranberry, dark cocoa, garden green, hollyhock, and outdoor denim. 

Well, my goal is to increase my blog followers and readership!  I want to share my thoughts, ideas and artwork with you so hopefully you can learn more ways to use the products from CTMH.  You know, the ones you bought and now aren't quite sure how to use it or can't remember what I showed at the workshop? 

So, read my blog and leave a comment, sign up to be a follower or, sign up to receive email notices.  (If you sign up for the email updates, email me with your name as I have no way to monitor this.)  I will compile the names of people who have participated and draw a name at random on May 1st to see if YOU are the recipient of a new 12 x 12 linen album.