Monday, November 30, 2009

It's a secret ...

If you are in my family, please move on to something else and don't read this blog post. Unless you want Christmas ruined.

Okay, I've been working on a Christmas present for some of my family members, and hadn't wanted to post in case someone I'm related to decided to read my blog on a whim. (Not that I think any of them actually read it regularly, lol). Now that I have warned them off, the rest of you can see what I've been up to.

Still digital. Yes.

I decided to make calendars for my parents, in-laws, and other various closely related types. I thought, hey, it's homemade, always a plus (well, for most of us), it shouldn't be terribly expensive, and it'll be FUN!!

Scratch that "won't be terribly expensive" thing. I thought, hey, I make "calendar topper pages" and find a place that will put them on a calendar and print them out, no worries. Um, yeah. Except that the FIRST one I did was all in 12x12, and for the life of me I can't find anyone who does 12x12 calendars. So I will have to tack on a 6-inch calendar at the bottom of each page and have someplace like Office Max print them out and bind the whole thing. Probably expensive. So that's my mom and dad's gift.

Getting smart after making theirs 12x12, I made my in-laws' 11x8-1/2. I should say, I'm MAKING my in-laws' ... it's still a work in progress.

Here is a page from the in-laws' calendar:

Almost everything is by Jean Daugherty (of both Heritage Scrap and Digizines Studios), and most from her "Revolutionary War" kit. The red background paper is by Atomic Cupcake.

In this case, there were no family birthdays during this month, so I resized some papers and ephemera from the Rev War kit and put in the place where the photos would normally go. Oh, I suppose I didn't explain that I used a page template (same as a scrapbook sketch only better) for the layout design. This particular one is a freebie by SimplyScraps Designs, from the GottaPixel November blog train. In digi, you can place your photo, paper, element, whatever over the corresponding space in the template, "clip" it to the template piece (i.e., a photo piece or a ribbon piece) and it will conform to the size and shape of that piece. You don't HAVE to use every piece on a template, or even keep everything in the same place. It just makes it a lot easier when you're in a hurry and don't want to have to plan everything out. (On this one, since I needed an 11x8-1/2 size, I resized the template to fit, then moved the entire photo cluster bit off to the side so George Washington would show.) It's NOT the same as a QuickPage, which is basically a layout that's all prepared and all you do is add photos. That is TOTAL cheating in my book!

I don't like the way the "July" tag ended up looking on the page, so I may change it.

Here's a sample from my parents' calendar, with birthday people included:

Again, almost everything here is from Jean Daugherty, in this case from her "Seaside" kit. There are some paper strips and ribbons behind the photos that are from other people, but I hope they -- and you -- will forgive me if I don't remember off the top of my head who they were and I really, really don't feel up to hunting them down on PSE's organizer. (I'm sick again.) Also again, I used a template. The designer's initials are EAM, and it was a freebie -- that's all I know.

My dad and my son both have August birthdays, so they're featured on the calendar top. Don't you love Jean's papers? That whole beach scene behind the photos and elements is a background paper! Gorgeous.

Since my parents are Christians, I decided to use Bible verses for each month; for my in-laws I'm just using various quotes.

Aside from the printing costs, these are still NOT cheap calendars. So often I have in my head exactly what I want for a page, and if I don't already have that exact thing, I have to go hunting for it. Sometimes I score Freebies, but often I'll end up having to buy a kit, or a style or action (ways of manipulating photos or elements without having to know how to make it work myself!). Yeah, so lots of money invested in these things.

Well, that's it for now. I'll try to post a few more later on. I want to get these finished so I can get back to heritage scrapping!

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving (those of you from the States).

BTW, I'm no longer taking the Medicine From Hell, so at least I'm not severely depressed anymore. Just sick. :(

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