8 photo Sketch for Scrapbook Sketch Saturday

Creatively Carol SketchesIt is Labor Day weekend, and if you are like me, you chose to stay close to home and not mess with the holiday traffic!  Here is a sketch for 8 photos, great for those summer family get-togethers with lots of people layouts.

In this layout I have labeled two photo sizes to give you an idea of dimension. Your photo requirements may be different. You will notice on the right side overlap the 4 x 4 square and the 2 x 3 photo to its diagonal.

Spiral clips and brads complete the layout.  I would love to see your take on this layout.

Remember, if you send me your scrapbook page based on this sketch you are entered into my monthly drawing for a free stamp set.  Just e-mail to sketches@CreativelyCarol.com or text to 801-597-4896.

Hope you are having a fun and safe holiday.

Creatively,  Carol

The Three Pictures You MUST Take Before The End Of Summer!

Traditionally Labor Day weekend signify the end of summer. When I was a kid school always started on the Tuesday after Labor Day, no though it can start virtually anytime yet my grandkids are all back in school already.  Labor Day weekend is your last real opportunity for family three-day weekends until Thanksgiving so you want to make the most of it.

Some random picture ideaenjoy the beachs would be of the packed car before you depart on your adventure. I think there are  Three pictures you MUST take before the summer are over, if you haven’t already this summer are your family’s favorite outdoor summer activity,  your child with the growth chart or growth chartruler, and what you or your kids liked best about summer vacation. If these three pictures are taken every year, (and labeled) you will have a record of how you or your family members have grown over the years.

Best Family Activities

There are lots of things to remember about summer, just make sure you don’t regrets about the pictures you didn’t take. Digital photography in this day and age means there is no excuse not to take the picture.

Leave a comment below and tell me what you think are the most important pictures to take before summer is gone for another year.

Enjoy a safe and happy Labor Day!

Creatively, Carol

How to Use Mosaic Tiles

Mosaic tilHow to use the mosaic tile techniquees are a great way to use our scraps on cards, scrapbook layouts and various crafting projects. It may look tricky at first, but really it is just a matter of spacing.  The recipe card divider on the left is a 6″ x 6″ base so you need to decide how much space you want between your tiles. The intent here was to have 1/2″ space between each column, and 1/4″ on the edges.  When you subtract the blue space from the total of 6″ x 6″ you get 1½” so you divide 4½  by 3 and get squares that are  1½ inch square.   It sounds complicated, but after you have done cut your squares, you just position them all equally spaced and adhere to the page.

Doing cards with mosaic tiles can be a bit trickier unless you figure the top layer width, and simply bring the design as far as you would like.

Watch next week for a video on creating mosaic tiles on my You Tube channel.

Have a creative day!


Do you Handmake Christmas?

I know, it is not even the beginning of September and I mentioned the “C” word!  Now I am not going to give you a countdown just Christmas Ideas for Craftersyet, that would just be cruel, but I do want to tell you about an exclusive benefit to being on my mailing list. This exclusive benefit is called the 12 weeks of Christmas.  Starting in October,  I send all of my mailing list subscriber a Christmas Project. The first 4 weeks is devoted to cards, the 2nd 4 weeks is gifts, and the last 4 weeks is bags, tags and wraps!  You will receive a picture and FULL INSTRUCTIONS for every project delivered to your inbox so when you are ready to tackle a project, you will have everything ready to go.

If you look to the right, you will see a mailing list sign up box, or you can just click here.

Now besides this great benefit you will receive free scrapbook and card tutorials designed by Close to my Heart Founder Jeanette Lynton, exclusive discounts, specials and great information every month!   So what are you waiting for?  Click this link and sign up today!

So back to my original question… Do you Hand make Christmas (or Hanukkah)?

Leave me a message below and tell me what you make at Christmas time.



Carol Gomes

Are you a Sucker for Award Shows?

Tonight are the Emmy Awards. An Emmy Award, or simply Emmy, recognizes excellence in the television industry, andThe Emmy Awards corresponds to the Academy Award (for film), the Tony Award (for theatre), and the Grammy Award (for music).

Emmy Awards are given in various sectors of the American television industry, they are presented in different annual ceremonies held throughout the year. Tonight is the Prime Time Emmy Awards. It seems fitting that they come just before all the new shows come out to compete for permanent time slots.

While I love the awards for prime time, I really like the “Red Carpet” hype. I love to see the fashions the ladies wear. After all, we have seen some very “odd” things made into dresses!  I understanWhat NOT to weard that these dressed influence what women will wear for the next several years… I sure hope that is not the case considering these strange dresses.   Crafting goes through its own “new idea” phase as well. Often it starts to show up just after CHA ( Craft & Hobby Association) Convention.

Here are some “Emmy” suggestions for you next layouts:

     1.    Combine several elements – at first glance they may not look as if they can be used together, but if you keep the colors of the elements close in color, they will surprise you and perhaps take you out of your box a bit.

     2. Use a Square Punch to punch out the focal points of photos that didn’t work on their own. You can line up several of the squares for an overview of your activity.

    3.  Enlarge Strong Photos to make a statement as well as draw your eye to the main subject of your page.

    4.  Mount photos on chipboard for a sturdier look as well as a place for hidden journaling.

5.   Use diagonal lines in the background to guide your viewer’s eyes to the photographs.

I will post some other ideas on Facebook today.

Have a creative day,


Where Does Your Inspiration Come From?

When confronted with a pile of paper, many experienced scrapbookers know exactly what Cherish Scrapbooking How to Book by Close to my Heartthey want to do. Snip, trim, tear, accessorize – there are lots of techniques for cutting, shaping and embellishing, and they have tried them all! But other scrapbookers both those new to the craft and those looking for inspiration, might have a hard time knowing exactly where to start.

Did you know that all of the layouts in the Annual Expressions as well as all the past Idea Books come from one of the Close to my Heart How to Books?  This will give you even more ideas to use in your scrapbooks.

There are now

I am sure these books will jump-start your ideas for that pile of papers sitting infront of you.  What do you do now for inspiration? leave a comment below and let me know!

Have a Creative Day,




First Day of School Photos

For a loGood way to label first day of school picturest of the country school starts this week, for a lot more it is next week, but whenever your kiddos go, it is the perfect time for a scrapbook page picture documenting the occasion. I love the picture my daughter-in-law, Annalisa Thaler took of my three grandkids in Utah. Not only do you see what they chose for the first day of school to wear, you see the anticipation in their faces and as you can see, a simple sign as to the grade they are heading off to join. The only thing I would have added was the date and year, but that is only because I am getting older and would have to do the math to figure this out in a couple years! How do you label the pictures you take for the first day of school? Share a picture with us or leave a comment below.

Creatively, Carol

What a Hoot!!

Of course I am talking about August 2014 Stamp of the Month. You may look at this as a Close to my Heart August 2014 Stamp of the MonthHalloween stamp, but it is that and so much more!  Let’s take a closer look.

  • Owls are very popular right now, and this owl is no exception. you can use as is or you can take the eyes and cut them out of the mask stamp, you can take the stamp under the owl and “pop” the eye section out to give the card more dimension.
  • The striped hat can be used on any party card including a birthday card.
  • You can certainly use the flower and leaves stamp on anything all year
  • Same thing with the crown on top of another stamp on a birthday or celebration card.
  • The wing with the squigglies can be a leaf and the circles at the bottom left, flowers.
  • Even the title “What a Hoot” can be used over any funny picture

When you get your stamp sets, take a good look at them and see how else they can be used. You will expand your value in each set you purchase.

If you watch my Creatively Carol  Facebook page today you will see 4 different cards taking this stamp set all through the year.

Have a creative day!


Top 10 Card Sayings I Found Today

Top 10 Card Sayings I found today! Retro Kitchen

Don’t you just love this retro kitchen!  Do you remember your parents or grandparents having appliances like this?  The kitchen reminds me of my grandmother baking, so I thought it was perfect to go with the card sayings I found today.  I didn’t write these, but when I saw them, I couldn’t resist sharing them. Some I have heard before, and some are new to me, and hopefully new to you.

These are all “Food and Kitchen” themes

  1. In a Jam?                                                  I’m here for you!

  2. Lovin’ from the Oven                              You Bake me Happy!

  3. You’re Eggs-traordinary!

  4. Lettuce wish you a  …                                Happy Birthday!

  5. You Spice Up my Life

  6. I miss You…                                              Hope we can Ketchup soon!

  7. You always Pop-Up when I need you

  8. Feeling Crumby?                                     Grin and Bake it!

  9. Olive You

And my personal favorite… You had me at “JELL-O”

Just imagine these sayings as you make your card with a cute kitchen theme.

My challenge for you this week is to create a card using one of these sayings and take a picture and send it to me!  Text to 801-597-4896 or send to Carol@CreativelyCarol.com

Seems like Forever … but the Fair is Over

Good Morning,

It seems like forever since I have been here!  I have thought of you often, but as the Vendor Coordinator for the Utah County Fair, Fairs in Spanish Fork Utahthe last week has been hectic and having a booth at the fair on top of trying to keep 75 vendors happy was sometimes a challenge but I loved it! I love being in contact with people so I know what they are looking for, what they are interested in.

I would really like to know what you are interested in these days. Are you scrapbooking? Making Cards? Maybe you are already thinking about Christmas; whatever it is, I want to know and I want to help.

In about 6 weeks, I will start the 12 weeks of Christmas… kind of a scary thought huh!  Back to the point. Christmas will be here before you know it. The 12 weeks of Christmas is 12 weeks of Christmas projects that will make your Christmas planning easier and much more fun.  These are exclusive e-mails that ONLY GO TO MY MAILING LIST with complete projects, instructions and all.  So if you are not on my mailing list, make sure to fill out the box to the right and jump on board!

School starts here in Utah tomorrow, are you ready?  I am off to find you a great project for that first day of school picture. I have no children at home anymore (the youngest is 28) but 9 of my 10 grandchildren are in 1st grade or above so I look forward to seeing those pictures soon!

Have a fun and creative day,





Homemade Oreo Cookies and Recipe Card

I loHandmade Recipe Cardsve the idea of this recipe card, making the recipe area look like the cream of the Oreo, but I don’t think it was done in a very good way.  I think if you were to put this recipe in your handmade cookbook here are the steps I would follow.

Type the recipe , centering the recipe in the center and print on a test paper.  Trim your black Oreo pieces so they too are rounded and attach around words.

When you know they are in the correct place, then print the recipe on white cardstock and attach the black cookie pieces.

Type the title of the recipe as shown here with white pigment ink for great contrast.

There really isn’t much embellishing you could do on the card set up this way.  If you were to type the recipe on it’s own, then make cookies to embellish the page with, that might provide a better card as well.

Enjoy your Sunday, and the cookies!





First Day of School Scrapbook Page

Scrapbook Sketch IdeasWith school starting soon, I wanted to give you a sketch that you can use for the beginning of school for every year.  On the left you can put a 5″ x 7″ picture of your child, and on the journaling tags you can list what your child liked best about that day.  If your chid is old enough to write, have them write the journaling prompts themselves.  The right side can be used for the getting ready stages of the first day, perhaps a lunch box or backpack. Is there something you had to help with?  hair etc, have someone take a picture of your helping them fix their hair or your doing it for them.

You can add more pictures on the right if using just 3 4″ x 4″ pictures on the page.  Look for more back to school page helpers this week too!

Leave a comment below and tell me if you scrapbook the first day of school and the grade of your children.



Throwback Thursday – Metal Backgrounds

Oakland Raiders 2002When I created this page back in 2003 , there wasn’t much in the way of metallic paper, or the illusion of metalic paper. Today there is Close to my Heart’s Glitter Paper in a variety of colors including black, grey, and silver. The Oakland Raiders’ colors, in case you are not a football fan and have been living in a cave for the last 50 years are Silver and Black. I wanted to show those colors in my scrapbook page so I took aluminum foil and covered a piece of white cardstock.  The photograph were backed with black cardstock to keep them from being damaged by the aluminum.  I didn’t know if it would, but wanted to be cautious.

I used the program cover as my title, and the tickets as embellishments. I have to resist the urge to re-do the scrapbook page over again using the glitter paperGlitter Paper for Scrapbooking and Cards.

Another way to bring the silver, or any metalic look is to use a thin metal background and emboss before adhering it to your base paper. Pick up a  roll of craft sheet metal for this I would use 36-gauge soft aluminum, and cut a 12″ x 12″ piece.  Next take a foam-cutting mat like Close to my Heart’s Versamat which has a cutting surface on one side and foam on the opposite side for use under your stamped images. The foam is used for   added “give,” flipped the metal sheet over, and used a dry-embossing stylus to make different-sized circles or whatever shape you want  in random places on the back side of the metal. You can use household items like a
CD, a small cup, a small box,  you get the idea. To keep the focus on the photos, you can place a sheet of plain vellum over the metal. This will soften the look but lets the embossed metal designs show through.

Working with shiny papers are easier than ever. Close to my Heart puts out glitter paper in blues, pinks, greens, teal, purples and browns besides the silver and black shown above.

Click here to see all the colors and get yours today!

Creatively, Carol

Is there an Invisible Adhesive?

Invisible adhesive for Vellum Do you use vellum in your scrapbook pages?  Here is a question from one of my readers on the subject of adhesive:

      “I like using vellum for the sentiments inside my cards, is there any way to make it stick without having the adhesive showing?   –  Danielle

Hi Danielle, I still use vellum at times too, and I know how frustrating it is to have the adhesive show through. It does diminish the wow factor in your cards and scrapbook pages.  Here are a couple of ideas that may help:
  • Put adhesive on the base of your layout, not your vellum – depending on your adhesive, this will help. there is a product called Vellum Tape, and most of the time it works ok. 
  • You can also put our Bonding Memories Glue  on the base and let the blue disappear, making it repositionable. Then attach your vellum and the adhesive will be very faint.
  • Try going without adhesive, punch two holes in the card base and vellum together and tie with ribbon, or attach with brads.

I hope these suggestions will help with your adhesive issue.

Creatively, Carol

**If you would like your scrapbooking, cardmaking and papercrafting question answered here, please send them to Carol@CreativelyCarol.com



Quick and Easy Pizza Pie

Handmade CookbooksHere is a recipe to be a sure hit with the kids. Mom’s will love it too because it is quick and easy!

This recipe card looks like a pizza with an olive on the bottom right, but the triangle circle was to show how to turn the points in the recipe.  It doesn’t really work for me, but is an idea on how to embellish the page.

Have a great Sunday, I hope you get a chance to be creative~

Creatively,  Carol

Sketches that Inspire your Scrapbook Pages and Cards

Are you ready for a new sketch? Remember, if you do the sketch, and send me a picture, I will enter you into the contest for a free Scrapbook Sketch Inspirationstamp set!   Here is your Scrapbook sketch inspiration for today. This sketch uses three 4″ x 6″ photographs with title and two journaling spots. The paper came from the LollyDoodle Kit.  If you missed getting this kit, let me know and I will see if I can find you one.

Chevrons are a big for the past year, though they aren’t a big draw for me, this paper is done entirely of them.


Rows of Flowers Mojo MondayYour card challenge this week can be done either as a 4′ x 4″ square or round.  Make sure if you are making this custom size,  you make the envelope large enough to accommodate it.  The round card has a scalloped edge, so figure that into the size.

Don’t forget to send me a copy of your work – No one won the stamp set last month so we have two winners this month… one for cards, and one for Scrapbook pages.

You can also send me a text to 801-597-4896

Have a safe weekend.

Creatively, Carol



Annual Inspirations – New Close to my Heart Idea Book Goes Live!

I have waited patiently for this day to tell you about the awesome new idea book that has debuted today. Close to my Heart Catalog

The new Annual Inspirations Idea Book is our new catalog format.  As the title says, this is an Annual catalog. We will have two extra mini-catalogs a year, one in the winter, and one in the spring. It is because of this new format that all the My Reflections Paper Packs from the previous catalog has been retired. We have 9 new My Reflections Paper Packs, beautiful new colors and great new stamp sets.  Some stamp sets have returned from the previous book so you are not completely out of luck.

Each month I will feature a different paper pack to showcase, as well as the new stamp sets.  Now you can see all the Stamp of the Month’s so you can plan your purchases to get the stamp set you want at the $5 price. On Tuesdays, I will post a project using the current Stamp of the Month.

On my facebook page, I will be featuring pictures of the new products, so if you are not subscribed to my page, do it now, before you forget.

I hope you will enjoy this new format as much as I do.  Click this link to check out the new Annual Inspirations now.  If you want to download your own copy, please click here.


Creatively, Carol

Shutterfly Going Away?

Is Shutterfly closing?Shutterfly closing

I read an interesting article this morning about companies that will not be around in 2015. There are so many acquisitions in business these days that the article didn’t surprise me too much.  I wanted to share one of the items on the list however,

What is Shutterfly?

Shutterfly is a Web 1.0 business in a social media world. While it continues to dominate the online photo printing industry, the emergence of free sharing and online storage sites such as Instagram, Facebook and Dropbox has compromised the company’s future ability to attract customers. Many of these services are optimized or native to mobile, where Shutterfly falls short.

Shutterfly had a modest 2.55 million customers in the first quarter of 2014, compared to 2.25 million the same quarter last year. Even though revenue rose 22% year over year to more than $783 million, it remains a small business. While Facebook does not generate revenue directly from this service, its users uploaded 350 million photos a day last year.

Who Uses Shutterfly?

Shutterfly shares fell 18% over the past 12 months, against an almost 20% gain in the S&P 500. But with shares down it has become an attractive acquisition target in the online sharing or storage business with limited exposure to paying customers for printed photos, cards or calendars. The deal frenzy in the tech space has public companies such as Amazon and Apple, which have huge cash hordes, looking for new complementary businesses. The company has retained an investment bank to look for a buyer.

So my question to you is: Do you use Shutterfly?  Where do you print your pictures? Do you even print pictures anymore?

Please leave me a comment below and let us know. In the meantime, I will do some research what options are still left and report back in the next week or two.

Creatively, Carol

You can read this article in it’s entirety here :  http://bit.ly/1nvVK7D

A Card for your Back to School Teacher Gifts

Making Handmade CardsIn my part of the country, I have learned that giving the teacher a small gift is often done. Here is a card to show how much you are looking forward to your child having that teacher.

This card is made with May’s Stamp of the Month “You’ve Got a Friend” and uses a Outdoor Denim base with a left sided fold.  Using a nice bold color when stamping the image on a piece of patterned paper gives this great look. Notice the little pen accents around the white portion of the card, very easy to do.

To create the techniques featured in this artwork, follow the helpful hints outlined below. Then use the pattern found on page 109 (Wishes: Noteworthy™) of our Wishes Card Confidence Program how-to publication for inspiration.

  • Dry emboss chevron pattern using the Chevron Embossing Folder on Crystal Blue cardstock strip.
  • Stamp ribbon sentiment in black ink on cardstock and patterned paper; trim.
  • Attach center from cardstock on Ariana Coral Dots B&T paper base image using 3-D foam tape if desired.

I hope you found these instructions helpful. If you have any questions, please leave your questions below so I can get you an answer.

If you are reading this post after May 2014 and would like this stamp set, please e-mail me and I will try to locate one for you.