Digital Scrapbooking Challenges


One of the best ways to find ideas and motivation for scrapbooking is to use challenges for inspiration. Challenges come in many different forms, but they all serve as a starting point to get your creativity rolling. I (Katie) rarely scrap anymore without some sort of challenge in mind. I’m excited to share some great sources with you. I know you will find hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of ideas that will make you want to get scrapping!


Right now I find myself very inspired by the challenges here at The Daily Digi. Each month we put together a “From the Files” challenge to use certain papers & embellishments to create a scrapbook. This is one of my favorite features here (and also the most difficult one for me to complete). I’m always amazed at how this exercise stretches my digital scrapbooking skills!

As a team member here at The Daily Digi, I do regularly scrap with contributions to the Digi Files. I’m not required to create a layout for each designer spotlight, but I have challenged myself to do so. I love to try and create something meaningful with each and every designer contribution to the files every month. As a result, I have completed close to 60 pages over the last few months using supplies from The Digi Files! I have dedicated an entire set to these on my flickr account if you want to take a look.

I hope to encourage you to follow along with us each month here at The Daily Digi and use the team’s layouts as inspiration to show you new ways to work with the amazing kits included in each month’s digi files. If you are looking for ideas for past month’s files, browse through our archives here and review the designer spotlight entries relating to the kit you want to use. You will find that almost all of our entries here can serve as some sort of challenge to improve your digital scrapbooking. Challenge yourself to learn clustering techniques, to tune up your titles, to work with templates, or increase your knowledge of design principles. We provide a lot of great tutorials and learning links, but if you take the time to DO the things in the posts, you will learn so much more! That is the number one reason I participate in challenges – to learn new things and improve my skills!

We also love to link you up to some of the best challenges found in digiland like we did with this post on photography challenges, so I asked our team members to share some of their favorite resources for challenges around the web. Most major digital scrapbooking sites host some sort of challenges in their forums or on their blogs, so if you have a favorite stop that isn’t listed here, be sure to check out what they have to offer. Many bloggers also offer occasional challenges so keep your eyes on your favorite blogs as well.


There are a lot of challenges out there! There is no way you will be able to participate in all of them, so just pick one or two to start with. Or consider bookmarking this list and trying a new challenge link each week (or month) to get a feel for which ones you enjoy the most.

Not only will you get great ideas for scrapbooking by following these challenges, many times you can also win gift cards and/or participation points that reduce the cost of digital goodies. Sometimes there are even freebies given to those who play along. What a bonus!


P.S. Kellie was the random winner chosen from the comments in the CheekyMonkey post from yesterday! Congratulations! You have won $10 worth of products of your choice from her store! Check your inbox!

In The Designer’s Studio With Cheeky Monkey

DesignersStudio copy

I am so excited to welcome CheekyMonkey as a contributor to THE DIGI FILES this month! I instantly fell in love her unique style and the quality of her embellishments (some really fun and unique ones I might add). Here is a closer look at her contribution to the files this month:


Can you believe that you will get this kit by CheekyMonkey PLUS 6 other collections valued at over $5 each for a total of $5…that’s it! What a great way to test drive a new-to-you designers products or challenge yourself with a new style! Also, there will be 7 customers randomly chosen from those that purchase THE DIGI FILES this month that will win TWO $10 gift certificates each to contributor’s stores!! Wow! What a great deal!! You can see everything that has been revealed so far this month on our awesome designers page.

Here are the fun layouts our team created using CheekyMonkey’s contribution:


Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Janet Phillips Collection 35 template (altered) and Round the Corner template; Mushy Imagination alpha brushes


Layout by Rachael

katieletters.jpg picture by scrapbooklady_bucket

Layout by Katie additional supplies: Audrey Neal template Font is CK good day


Layout by Melissa, additional supplies: DJB Renee Script font, Amy Martin template


Layout by Katie, additional supplies: template by Sine, journaling font is traveling typewriter


Hybrid project by Leigh, supplies: Gable Box template by Kelleigh Ratzlaff, A Happy Heart by Cheeky Monkey in TDF12, Distressing Ink by Tim Holtz, brown ribbon from my stash from Michael’s, font is LD Honey Dukes.



Hi, I’m Christine, but online I usually go by CheekyMonkey. I reside in the suburbs of Chicago, IL with my husband, Mike, two year old daughter, Alex, and a baby boy due at the end of this month. We also have a golden retriever named Merlin, who makes his way into many of the family photos and scrapbook pages.







Keep a journal or small daily notebook to write down ideas for scrapbook pages, or record that funny thing your toddler/teenager just said to you. Even if you aren’t a big journaling person (and we all know if we are or aren’t “journalers”), it makes going back to create a layout so much easier when you can remember dates and small details you might otherwise have forgotten.


Even though I’m a pretty creative person, glue and scissors are not my friends, and I am OK with that. I tried out paper scrapbooking a couple of times in high school and beyond, but never really got into it. A few years ago I discovered digi, but it was the amazing communities at a handful of sites that had me instantly hooked. As a new mom, I really enjoyed connecting with other moms in the forums and learning as much as I could through tutorials and posting questions. I began dabbling in design about a year ago, because I was curious what it would be like to make my own papers and elements. Again, I was instantly hooked!


My daughter, and her adorable and ever-changing wardrobe! Also, I am a magazine and catalog addict, and find much of my inspiration there.


Computer: iMac w/2GB RAM

What program/s are you using? PSCS4, Shoebox (for organization), Lightroom 2

What kind of camera? Nikon D90 w/50mm 1.4 lens, kit lenses, and a speed-light that was a Christmas gift and I still need to take out of the box.

Anything else: I could not design a single item or page without my Wacom Intous tablet –I don’t even use a mouse to surf the web!


It’s usually the last thing I’ve created, but lately I find myself using my Lightly Krafted and Lightly Textured Paper Packs over and over again.



Sweet Baby Boy kit:



Here are some of my favorite products by CheekyMonkey:







Here’s some GREAT layouts created using CheekyMonkey products (layouts without credits are linked to originals):


Layout by Katie, Cheeky Monkey Always: font is Calibri, template by Janet Phillips (modified)







I would like to say a big THANK YOU to Christine for being with us here at THE DAILY DIGI this month and sharing her talents and designs with us!

Go have a look in the CheekyMonkey store and come back and tell her what you like, we will randomly select a winner from those comments to win a $10 GC to her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST and must include a product name to qualify)!

CheekyMonkey has a GREAT sale going on right now, that you won’t want to miss!!


Some of My Favorite Pages

I (Janet) have mentioned a number of times that I don’t scrap in order. I can definitely see some benefits of doing it that way, but it is just a process that will never work for me. Comments like, “I finished scrapping 2008” leave me with all sorts of mixed feelings of guilt and sadness. Guilt that I will probably never be done scrapping 2008 and sadness because if I ever did finish scrapping 2008 (or any other year), I wouldn’t get to relive those memories in my creative process. The other problem, for me, is that scrapping in order and considering a certain month or year “done” is that it would keep me from some of my very favorite pages.

I love…no, LOVE LOVE LOVE pages that aren’t necessarily in the “here and now.” I just adore layouts where photos and memories of different times and/or different people and places are brought together to create an entirely different kind of story. I love looking at a page and instantly multiple memories flood together and I am left with a new impression of the photos in front of me. Often it is a case of photos being able to speak the words we cannot.

In the layout above, I collected a photo of my son for every month of his first year of life. I could have just put a 12 month photo on the page and just written about the way he had grown, the way he was generic cialis online a happy and chubby baby, the way he adored his big sister, the way he played with water any chance he got. Yes, I could have written those things. Instead, though, I took the time to gather photos from various times and now I am able to literally see him growing up from a tiny seven pound newborn to a chubby, messy-faced birthday boy. I look at this group of pictures and my heart melts.

Here are some other recent examples where I have used this oh-so-favorite scrapping style:

I love showing this layout to people because I always make them guess which child this is before they read the journaling. People are always surprised when they learn that the four photos are all of different kids. I have one photo for each of my children on the day that they first went swimming. I love that in one page I was able to bring in four separate days that happened over a span of five years, and tell one complete story.


This layout tool me a long time but it was totally worth it as I put together 21 photos of my daughter from over the last seven years. I can look at this layout and see my beautiful girl grow up before my eyes!


I did the same thing in this layout, except on a smaller scale. Here I took 25 photos of my youngest from 2009 and pulled them together in one cohesive page. The result? Seeing how much my girl changed in just one year!

And finally, here is a layout that you have seen before but that emphasizes the same technique. This page covers three and a half years of my life as I have had the amazing opportunity to meet some of my digi friends in real life. I have scrapped very few of these photos on their own, but together they tell a BIG part of my story and my love of all things (and people) scrappy!

So how about you? What pages do you have where you bridged a gap in time or place and told a whole new story? I would love to see them!

From the Files Challenge

Here are the supplies for this months “From The Files”,we chose one item from each designer’s contributions. The rules are the same; use each of these products at least once and nothing else (except fonts). We will randomly draw a winner from the layouts linked up in the comments (post on your blog or in a gallery) before midnight EST, Saturday February 20th. The winner will receive a $10 GC from one of our sponsors and will be announced on Sunday morning (February 21st).

File names:
Sir Scrapalot – SSA_YMCOT_eyeletframe
Suzy Q Scraps – sqs_sunshine_paper_blue
Mari Koegelenberg – mkc-iluvu-solid001
Janet Phillips – jphil_sensationalsingle1
Cheeky Monkey – CheekyMonkey_AHappyHeart_pp014
C.D. Muckosky – CD_LuvNotes_Love
CatScrap – fruitloopsally_ahth-collab_stitches (shadowed or unshadowed version)

Here’s what I did with this challenge:

Layout by Katie. font is CK footnote.

I turned off the layer of journaling strips on the template. I duplicated the lace border and made an inner frame out of the pieces. I also used the stitching on the frame. And I used pink on a page with my son on it – I don’t do that very often, but I thought it worked just fine with the theme here. Smiley

Here is what our team did with this challenge:

Layout by Jacki. Fonts are Giggles by Fontologie and Rub This.

“I moved items around on the template a bit. I’m not very good at using journal strips b/c I tend to be so wordy in my journaling – eep! But I love lots of photos so I used all those. I changed the hue and saturation on the blue paper a bit to match the tone of my DD’s t-shirt. Used the burn tool on the edge of paper to give it more dimension. Also used the heart cutting tool on CD’s wordart to give me some extra hearts to plop here and there.”

Layout by Karen.

“I blended papers from Mari and Suzy Q for the background. I cut up the stitches and the scallop frame and moved quite a bit around on the template for what I wanted to do.”

Layout by Steph font is JPHand

“I recolored the pink paper to a red and the blue to a darker shade of blue, but still coordinating with the LOVE doodle. I wanted the papers these colors so they would compliment my photos better. I recolored by going to image>adjustments>hue/saturation and playing with the saturation and light/darkness until I got what I was looking for. I added the scallop border to the bottom of the papers because a little scallop never hurt anybody 😉 (including boys).”

And here’s a fun hybrid project:

Project by Sunghee.

“I used Mari’s CD Sleeve Card from the DigiChick.”

Isn’t it fun to see how many different ways a few digital supplies can be used? We’d love to see what you can do with this challenge! Be sure to leave a link to your layout or project to be eligible for the gift card drawing.


P.S. The random winner from yesterday’s comments on Janet’s feature was Mary, who said:

“I’ve been a BIG fan of Janet’s templates, since back when I first discovered her at SBG. I continued to purchase her templates while she was at TDD and, have continued to do so at Sweet Shoppe Designs. There are several of Janet’s NEW templates on my wish list but the one I’m wanting most would be: The Birthday Book Album Set. Good Luck to everyone!”

Congratulations Mary! You won a $10 GC to Janet’s store! Check your email! 🙂

In The Designer’s Studio With Janet Phillips


I am so happy to welcome my sweet friend and template designer, Janet Phillips this month as a contributor to THE DIGI FILES 12!! Janet is the reason THE DAILY DIGI began over a year ago and I thought it would be awesome to have her join us in THE DIGI FILES as she returns to template designing! Her “perfectly imperfect” design style is easily recognized by most digital scrappers and her templates are such a great starting point for layouts! Here is a closer look at Janet’s contributions found inside TDF12:




Can you believe that you get all of these, plus everything seen on this month’s AWESOME CONTRIBUTORS page AND THREE more kits that we haven’t revealed yet for ONLY $5 in TDF12!?!? It seems too good to be real, but it’s NOT at THE DAILY DIGI!!!

Here is what our team created with Janet’s templates:


Layout by Ana, supplies: Template Sensational Single 1, Janet Phillips (TDF 12); Papers Flourish, Kristin Cronin-Barrow; Flowers Summer Sorbet, Zoe Pearn; Ribbon and hearts I Loved Her First, Traci Reed; Alpha Live your life, Traci Reed; Bad Sewing Machine 17, Traci Reed; Font DJB It’s Meeegan, Darcy Baldwin.


Layout by Karen, supplies: 2Many Photos 11 template (left side only), Fee Jardine Crazy 4 U kit, Font is Lilly


Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Amy Wolff Quiet Morning papers; Gina Miller Snowdrops elements; Dani Mogstad graph alpha; Fonts are Fontologie Giggles and CK Ali’s Writing


Layout by Katie, additional supplies: Easily Amused by Traci Reed. Alpha by Lisa Whitney. Font is CK journaling.


Layout by Jacki, supplies: Sensational Single #2 by Janet Phillips (TDF12); Kicks by Libby Weifenbach (SSD)


Card by Steph, supplies: 2 Many Photos 11 (left side only, rotated counter-clockwise 90 degrees). Digital kits by Melissa Bennett. Paper scrapbooking supplies: brads by Basic Grey and black ink.



My name is Janet Phillips but I hear “mom” a zillion times a day more than I hear “Janet”. My husband Jason and I have been married for ten years and have lived in Asia for seven of those years. We are currently in Indonesia. We have four beautiful blond headed kids. I homeschool by day, scrap by night, and do most everything while drinking coffee.






Janet posts most of her layouts here and here’s one she chose to share today:

Snow Princess


My number one tip for scrappers is to remember who you are scrapping for. The comments you get on a layout, the supplies you use, the “in style” techniques don’t matter. What matters is that you stay true to why you scrap — which for most people, is for their family and for preserving memories. That means your pages don’t have to be perfect, you can re-use a kit, and your journaling should be real.


I saw my first scrapbooks when I was in high school. I was in awe of them and I longed to be a part of it. For the next few years I collected supplies, took tons of photos, and averaged about two pages a year. I loved the idea of scrapbooking but the thought of getting out all the stuff overwhelmed me. In 2005 a friend of mine gave me a stack of scrapbooking magazines and I read an article about digital scrapbooking. I bought Photoshop Elements 3, Photoshop Elements 3 for Dummies, and then I got started. Five years and over 1000 pages later, I still love it as much as I did at the beginning.

In August of 2006 a designer sent me a free template to use. I did half a layout and then thought, “Hey! I can do this!” I have been creating templates ever since…at The Digi Shoppe, then to Scrapbook Graphics, then here at THE DAILY DIGI, and now at Sweet Shoppe Designs.


I need to create. Each day I need to do something creative. It meets a deep need in my soul and some days I feel like I can’t accomplish anything until I do something creative. Digital scrapbooking is the easiest way to meet the need and it makes the least amount of mess!
I also love stories…love learning about myself and others. I wish I knew more about my own childhood. I feel inspired to preserve the story of my children’s lives while they are still too young to do it themselves.


I have a 20 inch iMac with 2 gigs of ram. I bought a Mac two years ago and spent about two months in total buyers remorse. I hated it. Then I bought, “Switching to Mac for Dummies” and learned a few key things and now I would never, ever, ever go back to a PC. I love my mac!


Although I have Photoshop CS3 and use it on occasion for designing, I scrap 100% of the time in Photoshop Elements. I LOVE it and am happy to share with people about how powerful of a program it is.


I shoot with a Canon 20D and almost never take off my Tamron 28-75 2.8 lens. My camera is dying, though, and I will most likely upgrade to a 50D (though I am drooling over the 7D but I do NOT need that much camera!)




My all-time best selling product is my first template single called RING RING. I created it about a month after I started designing! After a long time in the vault, I have re-released it with the original and a new and improved version!



Here are some of my favorite goodies found in Janet’s store:






Here’s some inspiration for you using Janet’s awesome templates(layouts without credits are linked to originals):


Layout by Jacki, supplies: Template 2 Many Photos #2 by Janet Phillips; Doodles from Sandy Toes, Sunny Santa by Kate Hadfield; Alpha from Backyard Bliss by Kate Hadfield; Paper from Sandy Toes by Gina Miller


Layout by Karen, supplies: Janet Phillips Collection 8 template; Songbird Ave. Port Au Prince kit; Fonts are Hatcheck and Pea Bandit


Layout by Katie, supplies: Janet Phillips template Collection 1. Technophile by Traci Reed and Lliella Designs. Font is Arial.



Go have a look in Janet’s Store and come back and tell her what you like, we will randomly select a winner from those comments to win a $10 GC to Janet’s store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST and must include a product name to qualify)!

As a THANK YOU to THE DAILY DIGI readers, Janet has this coupon:



A Very Different Un-Digi Happy Valentine’s Day

We have had fun the past couple of weeks preparing for Valentine’s Day with you, linking to digital scrapbooking supplies and freebies from around digiland! Since today is Valentine’s Day, we want to be sure and wish all of our readers, customers, and designers a very HAPPY VALENTINES DAY and say THANKS for ‘sharing the love’ for digital scrapbooking with us each day!!!

But, as I thought about what I wanted to post on an Un-Digi Valentine’s Day, I couldn’t help but think of those that are mourning the loss of a Valentine for one reason or another. Whether that Valentine is a parent, a child, a spouse, or a friend, I can’t imagine that this holiday is easy. Maybe you know someone who is grieving a loss right now and that brings the question, “What can you do to help those that grieve a significant loss?” I found a GREAT resource for this information last year and I wanted to share!

TEAR SOUP is a great story that helps those and the people around them that are trying to heal. There are also some great tips for those that have a friend that is making tear soup (a.k.a. grieving) or if a child is the one making tear soup.

Tear Soup is not just for people that are grieving the loss of a loved one, but people that might be grieving anything (a job loss, a loss of health, to name a couple). I love that one of the things they focus on when making tear soup is the MEMORIES…because THAT is why we do what we do…..the memories!!!

Make it a memorable day!!

How To Guide For Clustering Elements

NeeNee is a guest member of our team here at THE DAILY DIGI. You have probably noticed her mad clustering skills in her layouts that have been featured here. She just opened Studio NeeNee at Scrapbookgraphics last week, where she sells templates similar to her scrapping style! I asked her to share some tips with all of us on creating great clusters and she was sweet enough to agree!


Clustering is often considered a four letter word to many digital scrapbook artists. Although the cluster style is coveted by many in the community, it is understandable that there is a bit of apprehension to try it or even know where to begin. After all, finding just the right quantity, size and color of elements to fit in a small space and yet, make sure it does not appear as a jumbled mess can be overwhelming.
It is interesting to look back over my year and a half of digital scrapping and see how this clustering style I now have has evolved. In hopes that I can help you build some confidence to tackle the clustering style, I have set up a basic tutorial which will guide you through the process I use to create my layouts.
Before we begin, I want to share with you a short list of elements that I love to use in order to create those perfect clusters.
1. Ribbon – I love swirly ones that are at least half of the page or more in length.
2. String – again, give me some swirl and length. You can always erase the end to make it shorter.
3. Bows – any size will do. They are fun to place so they peek out from behind elements or go right on top of a cluster.
4. Scatter – I can not get enough of these. If a kit has it, you bet I am going to use it. It seems to add that perfect finish to my cluster.
5. Variety in the elements (size, color, texture, shape) – buttons, flair, flowers, stars, leaves, swirls, word art strips, date tags and stitching, just to name a few.

For my layout, I am using “You’re My Cup of Tea” kit by Sir Scrapalot Designs which is part of The Digi Files #12 this month. As soon as I looked at the kit preview I knew it had many great elements to make one awesome clustered layout!

When I begin a layout, I open up the lightest colored, un-patterned paper found in the kit (you can change this later but I like to focus more on the elements at this point rather than the paper), followed by every element. I then drag each element onto my paper so that each element is a layer in this file. As you can see, it looks like quite a jumbled mess right now.


I like to add shadows to my elements before I begin positioning any of them. This is a visual preference for me to allow me to see depth in my layers and gives more of a realistic look at what my finished product will be. For my initial shadowing, I like to use K Studio’s Shadows Perfected,which are available in a CU and PU version.
As I add a shadow to each element layer, I turn off the visibility of the layer. You do this by clicking the “eye” to the left of the layer image preview.


This is when I would bring my photo(s) into a layer(s) on my layout. Even though I do not begin using my photos until after I have a few basic elements in place, I like to bring them in at this point so I am visually thinking about them and what frame(s) I may want to use with them, if any. For this layout, I chose photos of my daughter and I.

Now I am ready to start on the composition of my layout. I begin by finding the element that is going to set the length of my layout’s focus or the stage for it. Remember how I told you that I love to have lengthy ribbons? This is where that type of element would come into play. So, what if you don’t have a ribbon? Most times, this is where I would use ric rac or even a skinny paper crop.

With my foundation in place, I then set my photo(s).


I like to begin the cluster by adding a few larger “key” elements at varied points on my foundation area. By adding in a fun, swirly string and 2 flowers at opposing ends of my largest picture, you can see how the layout is already starting to evolve.


When clustering, the most important things are making sure that you use a variety of sizes and shapes when selecting elements as well as their position in the layer of the cluster. You want to place elements so that they are behind or “peeking” out from behind other elements and not always just adding them to the top.

With that in mind, now I will go in and add a few more elements to start making some cluster areas out of the base points.

Notice in this screen shot below, that I added the small yellow button on the left which is slightly behind the flower. Over on the right, I added a heart behind the blue flower and even a yellow flower which is peeking from behind the heart. Then there is the little bow tied button on top of the heart, almost like it is holding it to the string. At this point I also decided to put the string behind my smaller photo, as it just was not visually appealing to me anymore being in front. I also felt that little photo needed something to hold it in place, which is why I added the covered button or flair piece.


Now, I want to go in and add just a few more elements to this foundation. This cluster is really starting to come together but, it is not yet complete. When I am creating a layout, I do a lot of moving around and usually find the position of my elements by trial and error. I move an element to a spot and do not like it so, I try it in another spot. Do not be afraid to resize it and make it smaller, flip it horizontally or vertically or even duplicate elements that you love. This is why we love digital scrapping, because there are no mistakes! If you do not like something, you try something different. Nothing has to be permanent.

On the next shot, you can see I added several more things. This kit happened to have a date tag already attached to a ribbon, which I added to the right of my main picture, underneath all the other cluster elements. I liked the look of this addition as it was but, had I not liked the ribbon, I could have just erased it and used just the tag or vise versa. I also added a pink flower peeking out from behind the blue flower as I visually just felt it was lacking in that space. Over on the left cluster, I felt that I needed to bring in some blue to help balance the color, so I duplicated the large blue flower and resized it smaller and tucked it behind the pink flower. I also added a ribbon with the word “love” spelled in bead letters as a layer behind both flowers. The last change I made was to add the pink puffed heart as a layer on top of all of the elements.


At this point, I am feeling as though my layout is reaching completion. Therefore, I do a quick scan through of the “invisible” elements that are left in my layers palette to see if there are any I feel should be added to my creation.
I made quite a few changes her to finalize my clustering. There were some adorable little tea cups that I felt just HAD to be added in and those were placed on the left cluster just under the blue flower and on the right side of the layout just under the heart covered button. This kit also had some fabulous word art as well as a scalloped border that were perfect additions. I added both of these to the layout at the back of the foundation right next to the background paper. Lastly, I changed my frame color on the large photo as I just felt there was too much pink and my daughter is not so girly.


Now for some finishing touches. I need to try out some other background options so that I can find the best back drop for my clustered masterpiece.

You will notice that I decided to break up the background using the scallop as a separation point and used 2 contrasting papers. This almost splits my cluster in half. I added my title, the date and moved the entire cluster area closer to the bottom of the page. The only thing I will add now is a bit of journaling and my clustered layout, will be complete!


Now you should have some basic information that will help you create a nice element cluster. You can always start small and work your way into some more advanced elaborate clusters. Just remember, Variety in shape, size and position of the layer are the key to creating a great clustered layout.

Now, get scrappin’!

Fun and Free Finds for Valentine’s Day

We love to share great digi shopping finds with you here at The Daily Digi, but today we are going to link you up to tons of FREE finds in digi land! Can you believe that all of these beautiful products from top notch designers are FREE gifts for you?!

We know you will have fun filling up your hard drive with these sweet little goodies! All images are linked:












Yin template 179 and 180






Happy Downloading!


P.S. The random winner from Sir Scrapalot’s post yesterday was Christelle, who said: “I love the life: recorded by you frames! I also really like Arithmetic of Love!” She won a $10 GC to his store! CONGRATULATIONS!

P.S.S. Remember, there will be SEVEN people that will each win TWO $10 gift certificates from TWO different contributors to TDF12, just for purchasing TDF12. You will be automatically entered when you purchase TDF12!! 🙂

In The Designer’s Studio with Sir Scrapalot Designs


I am very excited to have Aaron of Sir Scrapalot Designs with us this month! Aaron is our first GUY contributor to THE DIGI FILES, (there are a few of them out there I hear) which shows just how much digital scrapbooking is growing and catching on! I love Aaron’s unique combinations of patterns, textures, and shapes to create truly unique embellishments!

Here’s a closer look at Sir Scrapalot’s contribution to TDF12:


You get this kit and SIX other digital scrapbooking collections for only $5!! You can see what has been revealed so far by clicking on our awesome designers page at the top of the site. Here’s what our team created with this fun kit:

Layout by Steph, additional supplies: Printing Primer font and Elise font (title)
Layout by Jacki
Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Janet Phillips template (modified) Collection 31
Layout by Katie, additional supplies: template by Kellie Mize, CK journaling font
Layout by Ana, additional supplies: Template Collection 19, Janet Phillips; Bitty Stitchies, Lauren Reid; Font, Rough Typewriter.


Card by Leigh, supplies: Font is LD Cute Curls, Cardstock from Papertrey Ink, Ribbon from my stash (probably from Michael’s).



Hi! I’m Aaron Morris, otherwise known as Sir Scrapalot. I am 31 year old who spends his days teaching middle school math, and his nights in the soft glow of a computer screen. I have been married to my lovely DW for almost 8 years, and we have two DD who are 3 and 5. We live in Massachusetts.








When I know I won’t have a lot of time to scrap, I use Katie’s Power Scrapping Method…with a little touch of my own. With ACDSee Photo Manager 2009clip_image001[5], I can tag items with multiple tags. So what I could do is create a tag for each layout, and then tag the photos, the template, and the kit that I want to use. When it comes time to work on the layout, I hit the tag in ACDSee and everything would pop back up. This saves me the time of copying the files to another folder, and saves me EHD space as well! When the layout is done, I delete the tag, and all is well again!


I started paper scrapping in the summer of 2008, in an effort to find a hobby that would keep me occupied and from surfing the internet mindlessly every night. Within a week’s time, I had discovered digi scrapping, and was hooked. I started designing soon after, at the urging of some of my digi friends. I opened up shop in early December of 2008.


Often, I am inspired by catalogs, print ads, bedding, and home décor. I also like to draw inspiration from wedding Inspiration Boards. When I am in need of some serious inspiration, I often take a trip to Target. I always find inspiration there, in a variety of mediums. I can often be found taking a quick picture with my Blackberry to save at home in my inspiration file.


I work on a Dell Inspirion 1521 Laptop, running Vista. I have 2GB of RAM, but keep all of my digi stuff on a 500GB EHD. I also do daily backups to Mozy. I use PSCS3, Illustrator, and ACDSee as the main components of my design work. I also use a Wacom Bamboo Tablet. My camera is a Canon Power Shot SX100 IS.


Sweet Sugar Love:



Sweater Weather:



Here are some of my favorite products by Sir Scrapalot Designs:






Here are some inspiration layouts using Sir Scrapalot products (layouts without credits are linked to originals):


Layout by Katie, additional supplies: Sweet Sugar Love by Sir Scrapalot; template by Kaye Winiecki template pack 07 (altered), font is journal away by Fontologie


Layout by Steph, supplies: Boy Oh Boy by Sir Scrapalot Designs





Thanks, Aaron for being part of THE DIGI FILES this month and sharing your work with us, we appreciate it!!

Go have a look in Sir Scrapalot’s store and come back and tell him what you like, we will randomly select a winner from those comments to win a $10 GC to Sir Scrapalot’s store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST tonight and must include a product name to qualify)!

As a THANK YOU to our readers, Aaron has this coupon for us to do a little shopping too:


Terrific Titles for Scrapbook Pages


Many of our readers have asked for help with page titles so I (Katie) am excited to share some of my favorite ideas with you today. I actually enjoy thinking up titles for my layouts and it usually isn’t too difficult for me to do so. For those of you who fear this task, I want to assure you that it will get easier with a few simple tricks and a little practice.

I have to admit that I haven’t always included a title on every page, but in looking back through my own gallery I have come to realize that it does put an important finishing touch on a layout. Ideally, the job of the title is to draw the viewer in to make them want to learn more about what you are showing them.


Van photos from istockphoto High Fidelity kit by Cori Gammon,
Title-ography Graphic Titles by Shawna Clingerman,

I love big bold titles as an attention getter. Don’t you want to know why these vans are “rockin”? The title is a good introduction to the story told through photographs and journaling. You can read my full journaling here if you are interested.

The title doesn’t have to be a huge focal point of the page. Sometimes, it is more like a finishing touch.


Shabby Princess Giggle Box, Bree Clarkson template, LD elementary font

The title is what pulls this layout together. The embellishment buttons describe fun and silliness. The picture is a goofy one, and the journaling is about my silly daughter. The title helps the viewer center in on the theme of the page. The page would look unfinished without it.

The real challenge for many scrappers is coming up with a title, especially for event pages like birthdays or vacations. It is easy to just slap the word “birthday” on a page and call it done. With a little extra thought, you can make the page more interesting. Instead of going for the obvious title, use a little creativity to catch the viewer’s attention.


Darcy Baldwin Template, Anne DeJong Ribbon, Papers by Katie the Scrapbook Lady, fonts are Textura Traced by Fontologie and Century Gothic

I could have easily titled this layout “Jazz Game”, but I tried to convey the excitement of a really unusual Jazz game experience. We actually got to meet coaches and players and had our pictures taken with them. It was a once in a lifetime experience! (You can read my journaling here if you are interested. I brainstormed about the uses of the word “Jazz” and once I thought of being “jazzed”, it all just clicked!


Ali Edwards layered template,”Treemendous” from After Five Designs. Fonts are Hootie and CK Good Day.

This photo just makes me giggle, and I love the memory behind it. We were doing some Christmas shopping at IKEA and we arrived before the store was officially open so we had to wait for them to drop the rope. My husband had the idea to pose as if waiting for the start of a race and our kids were completely willing to play along! Instead of counting down to a race with “Ready, Set, Go!” I used the title “Ready, Set, Shop!” to introduce the scene.

There are times when your title can and should be straightforward. I personally like to title at least the introductory layout of a vacation (if there are more pages than a 2 page spread) with the name of the location visited. After all, that is the subject of the layout!


Template by Janet Phillips, Papery flowers by Anne DeJong, Papers by Katie the Scrapbook Lady,Animal Kingdom graphic from internet.

There really is no reason to title this layout about our trip to the Animal Kingdom with any other witty phrase. The page is simply about the Animal Kingdom park and that is enough to engage the audience.

School pages are another topic where titles can be fairly basic. If you are doing a layout about your son’s 1st grade school experience, it’s perfectly ok to title it “First Grade”.

katie first

Back 2 School by Mari Koegelenberg and Melissa Wilson. Template by Ali Edwards. Font is CK journaling.

If you are doing several pages about 1st grade though, you will want to get a little more creative. Think about what the individual page (or 2 page spread) is about and use that as inspiration for your title.

katie bus

Back 2 School by Mari Koegelenberg and Melissa Wilson. Template by Janet Phillips. Fonts are Fontologie Printing Primer and CK journaling.

When you are scrapping multiple layouts for one event or topic, it’s helpful to think of your beginning page title as the title of a book, and the subsequent pages as chapter titles within that book.

There are many ways to add titles to a scrapbook page to make it more meaningful and interesting. I have developed a few tips and tricks that help me when I need to

Katie’s list of Ten Terrific Title Tips:

  1. Start simple. If your page is about an event, a vacation, or a special occasion, consider using the built in title that is already inherent in the page. Tell the “where” or the “what” of the layout.
  2. Write your journaling first, or at least think about what you plan to say. Often the title comes to me after I write down the thoughts I want to share. Sometimes you can simply repeat one of the sentences of your journaling or take a few key words from what you have written to use as a page title.
  3. Explain the page as if you weren’t going to give any other explanation. Even if you weren’t going to add any other journaling, would it be clear what your page is about? Can you add a title that would make the subject obvious?
  4. Imagine your page hanging in an art gallery. What would it be titled? Would it make sense to the viewer?
  5. Imagine your page as a book, or a chapter in a book. What would the title be? Would you want to read more based on that title?
  6. Hand the page to someone else. Give your layout to a spouse, a child, or a friend and ask them for title ideas. You might be surprised at what they come up with!
  7. Give it some time. Sometimes, I just have to put the page away for awhile if I’m stumped for ideas. When I come back to it with a fresh start, I often think of something I missed before.
  8. Borrow an idea. Look through online galleries. Browse title ideas at sites like or two peas.
  9. Use catch-phrases, song titles, or quotes to inspire a title. Be careful to explain the meaning through your journaling though, as future generations might not catch the reference to a song popular in our time.
  10. Have fun! It’s a scrapbook page, so don’t make yourself miserable trying to come up with the world’s most amazing title. Just be yourself and say what you would tell a friend who was looking at the page with you.


P.S. THANKS to Amy for taking time to comment in Janet’s post yesterday! She just won a $10 GC to Janet’s store at SSD! 🙂