Archives for November 2014

Cyber Monday Madness with 20% off all CTMH Cricut Collections!!

For the first time ever, Close To My Heart is offering a Cyber Monday Sale on Monday, December 1, 2014. There has never been a better time to buy Close To My Heart’s exclusive Cricut® Collections for 20% off the retail price. Whether you love scrapbooking, cardmaking, or creating 3-D projects, our four exclusive Cricut® collections make the perfect addition to any craft room! Sale starts at midnight (MST) on December 1 and ends at 11:59 pm Monday night. 
cricut-artbooking-collection 14-ai-cricut-artfully-sentcricut-artiste-collection
GUESS WHAT ELSE?  Cyber Monday falls on December 1, 2014 which is the start of the December Special – “Deal of the Decade”, that will let you  purchase C size (value $13.95) and D- size (value $17.95) stamp sets for only $10 with a qualifying purchase of $50. This is our way of celebrating the ten-year anniversary of our My Acrylix® clear polymer stamps, which have truly been industry-changing! Purchasing a discounted Cricut Cartridge makes you eligible for purchasing as many ‘C’ and ‘D’ sized stamp sets as you’d like for only $10 each! How fun is that??!!
CaptureDo you have loved ones who’d enjoy a Cricut Cartridge under the Christmas Tree? When you Order (2) Discounted Cartridges you will also qualify for $25 in Free Product! (must email me first) so I can enter it in as show!  Going to by 2? Get a special from me for FREE SHIPPING.  =)  Do not place this order through the website – call or email me.  This is good only for tomorrow, Cyber Monday, and until 7:00pm EST.
In addition to “Deal of the Decade” with C and D stamps for $10, our Seasonal Expressions goes live.  There is so much awesomeness in this!  2 new papers packs, new stamps, and new embellishments. Be watching for new cards, layouts, and more to be posted on this.  None of the stamps in the Seasonal Expressions are included in the Deal of the Decade as they are new.  =)
Hugs and Happy Cutting with your new Cricut Cartridges!! Blog: Shop:
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Last few days of Lucky 5

The end of November is almost here and with it, the last few days of Lucky 5!!  November marks the five-year anniversary of Studio J®, and that means it’s your lucky month, with five amazing ways to win through Studio J and Close To My Heart social media!  You only have a few more days to take advantage of this great special!!

First, throughout the month of November, all layouts purchased in Studio J are $5! That is a savings of over 25% off of retail! Your second chance to win big must come by sheer luck: every fifth order placed in Studio J during November receives a FREE surprise Close To My Heart accessory in its shipping box! The accessory has a retail value of $5 or more.  I’m sharing some of the samples I’ve done this month:

jun14_sg___-_1 If luck doesn’t smile on you in that way, you might stumble upon it by finding a little extra something in your Studio J box. Five “golden tickets” will be sent out during the month of November with randomly selected Studio J print orders! This “golden ticket” is redeemable for one of Close To My Heart’s new D-ring albums* loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors™.

jun14_sg___-_6For a fourth way to win, simply create new, gorgeous layouts in Studio J, select your favorites, and then post pictures of them on Close To My Heart’s Facebook page using the hashtag #ctmhlucky5. After November 30, five lucky winners will be selected from the entries based on their artistry and creativity and each of these winners will receive their own D-ring album loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors!

And there is one last way to win: take your new Studio J artwork and post a picture of it on Instagram using the hashtag #ctmhlucky5. Just as it is with Facebook, after November 30, five lucky winners will be selected from the entries to receive their own D-ring album loaded with 10 Top Load Memory Protectors!   Here’s another use for Studio J outside the box.  We needed to create a Science Fair board for SG’s science project.  I used Studio J to create what we needed for the board.  SG was able to catch on to the click, drop, and drag concept, as well as creating the wells for photos and text.  I am always amazed at how easily it is for little ones to learn new computer programs.

sg_science_fair_-_3sg_science_fair_-_4And to make things even more exciting, starting November 1, five brand new kits from the Annual Inspirations idea book will be made available in Studio J, so you can create new artwork using the latest papers and embellishments from Close To My Heart. With so many ways to win, five may be your new lucky number! Log in to Studio J and start creating today.   Here’s another idea – I used Microsoft Publisher to create these calendars and saved as jpgs so I could load them easily into Studio J.   I created 4″x6″ journal spaces putting “paper” into the background, then putting additional photo wells for the calendar and pictures to create these calendars for gifts!  calendar1_-_1*Offer valid November 1–30, 2014. Pattern and color of new D-ring album to be given to winners will be at Close To My Heart’s discretion based upon availability. New kits available in Studio J® on November 1 include Confetti Wishes, Snowhaven, Seaside, Pathfinding, and Scaredy Cat. No tax or shipping will be charged on the free item(s). Studio J layouts ship in a protected box that can hold 4 to 50 two-page layouts. For additional information about shipping/handling, please visit > Products and Pricing >shipping.

Have fun playing and creating! Blog: Shop:

While Supplies last!

The “while supplies last” section of my shopping site has been updated with some great products.  Take a look and don’t miss the sale!

While SuppliesThis is just a peek.  There are stickers, a punch, embellishments, and several My Creation options.

Hugs and Happy Creating!

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New Albums!

So excited to share with you that we have some new albums up on the website to purchase!  There is a new post-bound (black) and 2 new D-Ring albums.  Yeah!  It’s been loooong awaited.  Here are some pictures.  I just love the lagoon album!!

Black D ring lagoon albuWe all need great albums to put our layouts in and I’m so glad we have them.  You will love the new and improved quality of these albums from the moment you get your hands on one. The posts in our post-bound offerings have been made easier to use, which will increase the convenience of your memory-keeping. On our D-ring albums, we have strengthened the rings to keep your memories secure for a long time. The covers are built using a sturdy rigid material, and the exteriors are covered with coated canvas. Because canvas is a natural fiber, you may occasionally get an album with small flecks of color in the design. Such flecks are not a defect, but just part of working with natural fibers.

Hugs and Happy Creating!

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It’s the little things

It’s really the little things in life which touch your life the most.  Your child’s smile, the special look between you and your spouse, the variety of colors in the trees, the smell of baking cookies, the hug from a friend who knows what you are going through, and the extra step an employee, coworker, or boss did to help you out.  There are many more things you have to be grateful for when you stop and think about the little things.  The November Stamp of the Month (SOM) is called “It’s The Little Things” (S1411).  I have so many “little things” that I’m thankful for.  This stamp set helps me let those folks who took a moment of their time to touch my life, how special they are!  I love that you can purchase this set for $17.95 (before s/h/t) or for $5.00 with an order of $50.00!!  Here are the images:


Nov SOM imagesHere are some samples from this set!  Love the sayings and the font on the sayings!!!

1411-sotm-popper 1411-sotm

Here’s a card I made:


S1411 ITLT Nov SOM Card2 wm

Hugs and have a creatively blessed day!








Lucky 5 “You’ve Taken the Photos. Now Keep the Memories.”™”

There are 5 Lucky ways to win with Close to My Heart and Studio J in November.  I, for one, have a zillion digital photos so there is no way I’m going to get them all classically scrapped (paper).  I know I have plenty of company out there.  There are some memories I want to get recorded while the experience is fresh in my mind.  Sometimes, I want to make copies of layouts I’ve done and send them to friends or relatives to savor the memories made together or for presents. For certain events, I’m opting to use Studio J.  It just makes my life simpler.

1411-cc-lucky5The first lucky way to win is the Studio J pricing for November. I’m super excited over $5.00/layout (two 12×12 pages).  You can use Studio J in so many ways, there is no reason to not take advantage of this great deal!!

Second, very fifth print order in Studio J will include one FREE accessory retailing $5 or more. But that’s not all! Third, five lucky winners will receive a “golden ticket” redeemable for a brand new D-ring album* loaded with 10 Memory Protectors™ hidden in their Studio J print orders! If luck is not your lot, then you can earn your prize through raw talent. Fourth, those who post photos or JPEGs of their newly printed layouts on Facebook or Instagram, marked with the hashtag #ctmhlucky5, will enter the contest for layouts featuring the best artistry and creativity. Five winners will be chosen from each site, notified after November 30, and will then receive their own D-ring album with 10 Memory Protectors. The luck is abounding—come and get your fill!


1) You can create digital layouts in many ways in Studio J.  Studio J is free to create in until you order.

boot_camp_jonah_-_1 wm2) It’s extremely flexible and user friendly.  Key points for creating:

  • There are 130 different kits to use.  There will be 5 more kits added on November 3, 2014 for a total of 135 kits.  Each kit has it’s own embellishments, font, stickers/images which match.
  • There are 79 different patterns.  The cool thing about our patterns is you can take one pattern and change it all around by swapping which page is first and changing the direction on each of the page – there are over 35 different ways to change up the patterns/pattern.   This is over 2765 different combos!
  • You can change where the pictures/text boxes are to create more combinations. You can put text boxes over photos to make it look like the photos have the texts on them when they are processed.
  • Fonts are interchangeable, making journaling quick, easy, and fun.
  • Embellishments include ribbon, metals, stitching, and more.
  • Colors in the layouts are changeable.
  • Photo Editing within the program.
  • Sizing/Cropping can be done either in the Photo Editing or in the photo “wells”.
  • Express Kits, which are pre-designed for you so all you have to do is add pictures and do the journaling.  There are ones for vacations, a year reviews, babies/kids, sports, and schools.  There are two for photo development (more on this later).

How does it work:
a. Upload photos.
b. Choose between our professionally-designed Express Collections or the Custom creation path.
c. Select your collection and layout, or else a kit & pattern combination.
d. Personalize your layout.
e. Purchase custom-printed layouts ready for a cherished album.  This purchase includes the 2-12×12 prints (a layout) and the jpegs for the layout – 3 of them for reprinting purposes.

boot_camp_beautiful_you_-_2 wm - Copy

3) You can create your own layouts in other programs, save them as jpgs, and upload them into the “No Limits” pattern to print through Studio J.

boot_camp_full_of_personality_-_1 wm

4) You can print your pictures through Studio J.  You have a few options for doing this.  You can use the two Express collections for this or you can use the “No Limits” pattern to create your own photo well, sized the way you want.  You are not limited to 4×6, 5×7, 8×10, or 12×12.  You can create a photo well that is 5×5 or 6×5.  You can take the Studio J layout jpg that you get when you order and use it to make smaller albums!  Take the “No Limits” layout and make your photo wells – 6×6, 8×8, 9×9 – whatever you want!  You can go as small as a 1×1.  3×4 and 2×3 are popular.  Think of the number of wallet prints you can get out of one 12×12 page (18)!  For $5.00!  Plan for school pictures – buy the digital image and print those wallets pictures for all the friends and family!

How does the pricing compare to the local places to print or your home computer?

First thing to consider is Studio J layouts are processed, not printed, using a silver-halide process considered the highest standard in the photo developing industry. Unlike printed papers or images you might print from a home photo printer, the silver-halide process yields “100-year+ quality” that has long been tested and used by the top photo labs in the world. We use the same papers and equipment used by leading labs to produce long-lasting photo prints, so you know your layout will be reproduced with high fidelity and will last throughout the years.  The quality of processing will exceed what you can do at home or through your local stores.

Why is this important?  Consider the point of scrapbooking. We do it to record the stories around the photos.  Most of the people I know do incredible work in their layouts.  The most important part of the layout is the pictures, thus having top quality pictures is important.  This picture shows you some simple ways to get different sized pictures:

sj photo lo 2 wmWhile you may not come out ahead of the game for printing 4×6 photos through Studio J for cost when you use a local store, you will for the quality.  To print a 4×6 image through a professional lab, they run around $4.00/image.  I realize you can get your 4×6 photos printed at Costco, Target, or Walgreens for about $0.20/image.  I ask you to consider the differences between a professional labs and stores.  Just for some quick references, I did a price comparison on a professional lab, Costco, and Walgreens vs Studio J

Professional Lab (one professional photographers use)

  • wallets (2×3) – 4 of them for $6.00
  • 4×6 – $4.00 ea
  • 5×7 – $8.00 ea
  • 8×10 – $12.00 ea
  • 11×14 – $20.00


  • wallets – $0.39 ea
  • 4×6 – $0.13 ea
  • 5×7 – $0.39 ea
  • 8×10 – $1.49
  • 11×14 – $2.99


  • wallets (4) – $1.00
  • 4×6 – $0.20 ea
  • 5×7 – $2.49 ea
  • 8×10 – $4.00
  • 12×18 – $12.99

Studio J:

  • wallets (48) – $7.00/$0.15 ea –  ($5.00 in Nov)
  • 4×6 (12) – $7.00/$0.58 ea ($5.00 in Nov)
  • 5×7 (6) – $7.00/$1.16 ea ($5.00 in Nov)*
  • 8×8; 8×10; 10×12; 12×12  (2) – $7.00/$3.50 ea ($5.00 in Nov)*
  • * with the odd sized photos, you can put in other sizes around them and still pay the same price.  For example, on the 5×7 – you can fit 3 on each 12×12 page plus have another 5×5 photo; On an 8×10, you have one side where there is 4″ lefts – you can put 4 – 3×4 photos along the top and on the 2″ side, you can put 2- 3×2 photos and one 2×2 photo for the same price ($7.00)

Looks something like this when you are doing different sizes:


sj photo lo 3In summary, for some of the photo sizes, you come out ahead both on cost and quality; On some, you come out ahead on the quality only.  However, with the ability to manipulate the photo areas and how they are printed, you are able to fit other sizes in on those 12×12 sheets, a definite bonus for you.

5) I do FREE classes!  I can do them individually or in groups.  I have several classes from the basics to more advanced techniques!!

Try it out and find out why I’m so excited for November!  Studio J just makes life simpler, faster, and easier.  Here are the true five reason to use Studio J:

  1. Real Life +
  2. Real Photos +
  3. Real Memories +
  4. Real Time + Studio J =
  5. Real Scrapbooksboot_camp_mr_and_mrs_-_1 wmUsing Studio J in November just adds a lot more fun and possible winnings!!

Have a creatively blessed day!

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