in the designer’s studio with QUEEN OF QUIRK

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I am very excited to finally welcome Queen of Quirk, Jan with us in THE DIGI FILES this month!!  I have long admired Jan’s work as a designer and as a philanthropist (she is co-founder of Songbird Avenue, the only official digital scrapbooking charitable organization). The Queen of Quirk line is a very clean and crisp line of products with a bit of an artists twist to them and very unique.  Here is a closer look at her contributions to THE DIGI FILES this month:

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Here’s some inspiration created with Cirqu du Ciel by Jan:

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Layout by Karen, additional supplies: Queen of Quirk Scrap Canvas: Off Kilter template
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Layout by Amy Wolff
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Layout by Melissa L, additional supplies: Kristen Rice stitching; font is 1942 Report
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Layout by Katie, additional supplies: Template by Sine. Traveling Typewriter font.
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Layout by Heather (Queen of Quirk CT)

You can find several more layouts created by the Queen of Quirk CT, TDD readers, and our CT in the Team Inspiration category!

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Hello there. My name is Jan and I live in Germany with my hubby and 3 daughters, Lara, Mia and Norah. We always joke that we should have had 2 more kids, Oprah and Paul, so we could just yell “LMNOP!!!” whenever we wanted all of them. 😉 We’ve lived in Germany and England since 2003 and it’s very much starting to feel like home over here. We get to travel all over (when volcanoes aren’t acting up, of course) and experience new cultures and new people. It’s very exciting and lends itself to widely varied inspiration that creeps into every aspect of our lives. When I’m not buried in Photoshop, designing digi goodies, I am either baking, sewing, gardening, painting or finding that millionth other hobby I haven’t tried yet that I just can’t wait to sink my teeth into. It’s not hard to do with 3 little girlies in the house. They’re always up for anything crafty. The next projects on my to-do list? Vintage pillow case skirts and a pirate birthday cake for my oldest daughter.

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Many times when I feel stumped creatively, I go on a little scavenger hunt through my scrap stash. I find 6 random things that I love and I make them work for whatever project I have at hand. Because I only buy what I really love, most of the papers and embellishments I own are right up my alley and coordinate anyway. I always love challenging myself to see if I can make something work. And unexpected pattern and color combinations are always to stumble upon.

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…. Like a lot of other designers and scrappers “back in the day” I fell in love with digital the minute I saw Shabby Princess’ designs. With 2 sticky-fingered princesses of my own running around, my paper scrapping days were a bit hectic and disheveled. I started using digital more and more and by the time our 3rd princess arrived I’d started selling my own designs. I actually stopped selling for a while and was a freebie designer for over a year before I was inspired to start Songbird Avenue, a charity site, with my good friend Meredith Fenwick. It’s a job I love and am very proud of. I now sell my designs at JessicaSprague.com and couldn’t be happier. It is a fabulous site, full of friendly faces and inspiration.

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Everything around me, especially our travels. We’re lucky enough to have been all over Europe and I am inspired heavily by the places I’ve been to and the places I dream of. I love color and eccentricity. I find that the more something seems askew, the more I am drawn to it. I love a bit of wonkiness and so when I design anything I try to bring that quality to the table. I love a “collected” look and I try to achieve that each time I sit down to create.

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Although I love using my tablet and Illustrator, I haven’t forgotten about my 2 first loves: my Sharpie and my scanner. I’m also seriously addicted to sketching in my notebook. I’m pretty old fashioned when it comes to execution. As much as I love technology, it’s also nice to just head downtown and pull out my notebook and sketch in a café. It’s very “no-fuss”, which I crave.

Currently I am working on our 4 year old laptop while our “BIG DADDY” computer is being repaired. My husband built it but we’re having issues with the graphics cards. When it’s up and running again, I’ll be coasting along quite nicely with 4 gigs of RAM. Can’t wait.

I just upgraded to CS4 last year so I’m sticking with it for a little while longer. I find there are new things to learn every day and I’m not in any hurry to have the latest and greatest. I’ll probably upgrade again sometime around CS7 or so. 😉

We purchased a Canon a couple of years ago. We love our 40D. The lens is bigger than my head and I’m just in awe of the photos we get out of it.

I have a Wacom Intuos 3 tablet that I love. My kids love it, too. They think it’s magic, of course.

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Here are some of my favorite products

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Here’s some inspirational layouts using Queen’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

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Layout by Dunia, supplies: You Are Here Collab by Queen of Quirk and Paislee Press

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

As a thank you to our readers, Queen of Quirk has created this coupon to share with all of us!

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