BIG iNSD Funtastic Friday

Katie has her live chat at Big Picture this weekend, I believe it starts at 8pm PST.  You have to register to attend, but it’s free.

Wow!  It’s (inter)National Scrapbooking Day tomorrow and a big day for scrapbookers everywhere!  We are joining in on the fun by sharing some of the awesome finds to be had in digiland!  Pull up a comfy chair and grab a drink, you will be here for a while! 😉

miss kim has a great deal going right now:

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Krisi has a super saving deal for those that love templates (especially hybrid and card templates):

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Karen Lewis has a Grab Bag May 5th – May 31st.  NSD Sale 30% off May 5th – May 8th @ The Digichick (it was about a year ago this time that I discovered Karen’s designs for the first time):

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Jenn CK has a great storewide sale going on right now:

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Janet has some new templates coming (and on sale) Saturday (and I think that baby album set would be great for non-baby pages too):

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The Daily Digi readers can get an extra 5% off by entering WZ_TDDMay05 in the shopping cart before checkout. (Not valid with any other offer, or on collabs, designer services or custom products.)
Expires 05-07-11

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Scrapping with Liz will be having a free template challenge, with a chance to win $25 to my store along with a $1 sale on 30 items:

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Listgirl Designs is having a 50% off sale her entire store at Mscraps for iNSD weekend (I’m loving her new kits Smile ):

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Peppermint Creative has a fun “Make Your Own Sale” going on:

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Allison Pennington has been super busy getting ready for this weekend:

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Be sure to check out the good deals Sabrina has going on:

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I literally gasped when I saw the preview for this kit (gasped in a good way…I’m in love! and it has a coordinating Grab Bag for only $ 3.99) :

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Some really great deals can be found in Jennifer’s store too:

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NSD fun & savings! 20 digital scrapbook products — including NEW mini kits & digital stamps — only $1 each. May 5-9. Plus a freebie every day on Suzy’s blog.

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If you have an athlete in your life, you will want to grab this collection that will be on sale 20% off all weekend and TDD readers can get an extra 10% off TDDiNSDparty (valid through May 8th):

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Tracie Stroud will have this brand new kit and 20 other items in the Farmer’s Market for only $1:

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There are lots and lots of good deals to be had at 9th and Bloom:

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Jenn Lindsey has lots of deals and freebies to be found as well:

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Look at all of the things Mscraps has going on!  Have you ever wanted to be on their team?  Have you been eyeing stuff in their store?  Don’t miss out!

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mle Card has these three cute, NEW products in the Farmers Market for only $1:

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You can find some great deals, sales, and freebies on Connie’s blog:

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Ju has some really great things going on, be sure to stop by her Facebook page to learn more so you don’t miss out:

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There are so many things I like about this kit, isn’t it CUTE!?:

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Baersgarten will have a closeout sale going on and everything else in her store will be 30% off through Sunday:

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A5D has a BIG sale going on and a Free With Purchase too:

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The very sweet Yin has a new freebie on her blog, be sure to check out her store too:

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Amanda Heimann has a HUGE grab bag and a sale going on:

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Danielle Young’s store at Oscraps is 30% off all weekend ~ including this bold, new collab with Brine Design!

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Wow!  Something Blue has some really great deals!:

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Check out all the HOT! new products Chelle has this iNSD weekend! One south of the border grab bag and TWO Commercial Use grab bags! You don’t want to miss out! Check the blog for the dino hunt game too!

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The Digichick is having a store wide 30% off sale, along with grab bags and special $1, $2 and $3 goodies all over the store! We are also having a “Night Owl Pajama Party” all day Saturday and Sunday with chats, challenges and lots of laughs!

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Captivated Visions has ALL of these goodies for only $1!  Wow!  Great deals!

The more you buy, the more you will save with Weeds and Wildflowers:

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Wowzers!  Misty is having a storewide sale on Saturday and Sunday:

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Kristin CB has a storewide sale going on Saturday and Sunday (even her new scoops will be on sale):

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Don’t miss Peppermint’s sale (her newest kit is included):

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Sooo much going on at The Lily Pad!  Lots of good deals and events:

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Kitschy Digitals is having a storewide sale of 25% off including these beautiful flowers:

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Wow! I know my PayPal account will be smokin’ this weekend, how about yours!?  Be sure to save some time for SCRAPPING too! 🙂

P.S. Julia Spencer was the random winner chosen from Gina Miller’s post yesterday!  Congratulations Julia!  You won $10 in product from Gina!

Gina Miller: I Swear I Didn’t Sleep That Night

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If you’ve been a digi scrapbooker for very long, you know that the design industry can be a fast changing industry. Gina Miller is one of those designers that is a “rock” in our community. She has been an active member of our community as long as I can remember and consistently puts out beautiful, playful, bright, high quality products. It is an honor to have Gina back with us again in The Digi Files this month! Let’s take a closer look at “Celebrate” that is included in The Digi Files this month:

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Here are some layouts created using Gina Miller’s contribution:

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Layout by Heddy.

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Layout by Jenn, Additional Supplies: Mask by Jenn Lindsey, Font: Typewriter Scribbled.

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Layout by Jacki, Additional Supplies: Font: Smarty Pants by Darcy Baldwin.

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Layout by Karen, Scraplift of Gina’s Andrew 6; Additional Supplies: Staple by Lauren Reid.

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Layout by Trina, Additional Supplies: Sassy Starters Vol. 16 by Nanie’s Designs (included in The Digi Files #29).

You can see more layouts created with this kit on our “Team Inspiration” page.

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InTheStudioWithMM

I’m Gina, married to a firefighter,Vin, and mommy to three little peanuts: Emily (7), Andrew (6) & Gracie (2). We live in New York. I have been a graphic designer since 2005 and own my own photography business, Gina Rae Miller Photography. I love sleeping in, coffee drinks, sweatpants, skinny jeans, cute shoes, shopping, collecting photography props (my laundry room AKA prop room is like an explosion), capturing a memory on film, playing with my kids, watching 80s’ movies with them, going out to dinner, Nikons and crocheting… amongst other things. 🙂

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designerscanvas3 Funny, I haven’t scrapped in ages it feels like yet I have an un-posted layout sitting jeer, waiting to be shared! LOMM

SUPPLIES: Houndstooth Rainbow papers by Gina Miller.

howitallstarted3 I started scrapping when my son was about 4 months old (and my oldest daughter was 17 months). I had gotten my first dSLR and was a lurker on the 2Peas boards, long before they even had their own digital board. After turning my nose up at the digital stuff I was seeing online (it looked so cold and sterile to me), I dove right in. I swear I did not sleep that first night. I was HOOKED! My early pages were awful – but I thought they were amazing. 🙂 My scrap time has waxed and waned over the years as time permits but I still have a fiery passion for it deep inside! I was a scrapper for about 6 months before I was invited to start selling my designs at The Digi Chick. inspirestocreate3 A GREAT photo or maybe even finding a GREAT kit that I know I have pictures for. toolbox3 A mishmash of everything! Tons of fonts… lots of assorted papers (but I am very picky with my papers. I don’t like anything too distressed or too textured)… stamped alphas are also a must for me! I have a 24″ iMAC running Adobe Photoshop CS4 and Lightroom 2. Both are in need of an upgrade. 🙂 My camera is a Nikon d300s, with a 50mm 1.4 lens attached 95% of the time! tipstricks SAVE! Always save your work, every 20 minutes or so. There’s nothing worse than opening the text tool to finish that last blurb of journaling and having your program crash on you. I know you’re nodding along right now. How many times has this exact thing happened to you too?! favoriteproduct3 My favorite product changes weekly. =P Seriously, I am terrible at choosing. Since I assume that’s not going to cut it here, I’ll say my Sewing Table Stitches. I love a good, useful element set. Papers are great but I tend to fall in love with every new color scheme I come across and thus, unintentionally tire of the old. ColorCode popularproduct3 My layered sketch templates have always done really well. Most recently, my Mini Builder collab with Jacque Larsen has been a hit too! RJPP clip_image001_thumb1512 Here are some of my favorite products by Gina Miller: image image image image image image image

clip_image001_thumb1112 Here’s some more inspirational layouts using Gina Miller’s products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

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clip_image001_thumb712 Go have a look in Gina Miller’s store! We will randomly select a winner from the comments to win $10 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify)!

Inspired by Gina Miller and Celebrate

The following layouts were created using “Celebrate” by Gina Miller and included in The Digi Files during May, 2011:

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Layout by Sharon

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Layout by Tamara

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Layout by Heddy

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Layout by Jenn, Additional Supplies: Mask by Jenn Lindsey, Font: Typewriter Scribbled

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Layout by Jacki, Additional Supplies: Font: Smarty Pants by Darcy Baldwin.

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Layout by Karen, Scraplift of Gina’s Andrew 6; Additional Supplies: Staple by Lauren Reid.
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Layout by Jammie (a reader).

Stretching Solids for Digi Scrapping

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Fontologie Textura Traced font. Papers by Katie the Scrapbook Lady

 

If you’ve looked through my layouts, you will notice that I (Katie) love using solid papers! While it may be the patterned papers that tempt me to buy digi kits, I won’t ever give in if there are not at least a few good solids included. I just have to have them! Solid papers go with any theme, are easy to journal on, and can also be recolored to suit any photo. They also make great partners for patterned papers, so they help me utilize the other pieces of a digital scrapbook kit. Solids are the foundation pieces for almost every layout I create. There’s only one drawback… they can be a little too plain sometimes. I’ve found several ways to stretch the way I use solids for scrapping though, and I’ve been having a great time reusing digi papers I thought had hit the retired list in my collection!

 

GET EDGY

Janet’s most used scrapping trick of using some sort of edge or border treatment on a layout, is especially important with a solid background paper. The eye needs a frame to give the page definition and boundaries. You can use all types of borders and creative ways to edge a layout and we have loads of examples to inspire you in this Living on the Edge post. Here are some other examples of how to add some interest to the edge of solid papers:

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Distressed Edge Overlay by Anna Aspnes

 

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Paper Reveal Overlays by Katie Pertiet

 

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Sparkle Me Happy by the Shabby Princess

 

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Square Border Frames by Jenna Desai

 

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Text on a Path by Sahlin Studio. Also refer to this tutorial by Steph.

 

MAKE IT PATTERNED

You can easily turn solids into patterns with several tricks and products!

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Pattern Overlays by Loreta Labarca.

Fill with solid papers to create a new patterned paper.

 

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Play around in your program to use different effects. I used Color Fade – Vertical (in Photoshop Elements) to get this look.

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Play around with program filters to add texture and design to solid papers. I used the patchwork filter under the filter effects menu in Photoshop Elements to create this look.

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My solid paper blended with a paper from Hello Spring by Cinzia Loosemore

I layered my solid paper on top of Cinzia’s patterned paper and used the hue blending mode in Photoshop Elements.

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Add the paper on top of a photo and lower the opacity of the paper until the photo shows through.

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Of course, I must refer you to the master of blending – Jenn Lindsey if you want to learn more blending tricks. Check out Jenn’s self-paced class at Big Picture Classes for more details!

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Finally, when you layer 2 solids together, they form a pattern of colors that adds interest to the backdrop of your layout. This is one of my favorite tricks!

As you can see, there are MANY ways to stretch solid papers to get more use out of them. Next time you open up a digi kit, take a minute to explore the ways you can have fun with the solids!

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Designing Your Memories -Texture

Do you have a desire to create a better designed scrapbook page?  The Daily Digi is a great resource to help you achieve your goal.  Many design principles & elements have already been explained including:

Balance

Repetition

White Space

Type

Color

Emphasis

Contrast

Alignment

Flow

Today I would like to add to this awesome arsenal of info by talking about texture, a design element.

All surfaces have texture – from the smoothest mirror to the roughest rock.  “Texture is defined as the surface characteristics of a material that can be experienced through the sense of touch or the illusion of touch.” – Visual Literacy.   As digi scrappers, we work with visual texture, or the illusion of a surface’s texture.  Our work can’t be physically felt, but we can give the impression of texture.  Using a variety of textures on our digital layouts, such as rough cardboard, smooth buttons, or fabric flowers, will enhance our digi layouts by bringing a tactile element to our pages.  Here are a few examples (all layout are linked):

This beautiful layout by amandaresende has a variety of textures that add interest to her layout.  She repeats the lavender color by using yarn, a flower, and a dragonfly sticker – all of which have different textures:

tettletop20 did a great job adding a texture to her layout.  The bumpy background paper coupled with the gingham ribbon and smooth buttons make this layout interesting and fun to look at:

Not only do I love the color choices jendavey picked for this layout, I also love the variety of textures she put on her layout.  The rusted metal key, the flowers with a variety of textures, and the rhinestone jewel all support the design of this layout without stealing the show:

Even clean designs with few elements, like this one by timounette, can be full of texture.  Timounette’s  stitching, glitter, and ribbon are not only great repetitions of the color red, they are also differing textures that nicely contrast the smooth background paper.

Here is another clean layout that still has a variety of texture.  This adorable layout by clarabear was creatively assembled using lightly textured paper, crinkled tape, a smooth floral sticker, and bumpy stitching.

There are a few points to remember when adding texture to a layout:

1. Make sure the texture supports the message of the layout.  If your layout is about an elegant wedding moment, crinkled masking tape is probably not the way to go!

2. Use contrasting textures to make things pop.  A smooth epoxy element coupled with a fuzzy felt item will add interest and dimension to your layout.

3.  When using print over an uneven surface, taking the time to make the font follow the background texture will add to the feel of your layout.  HERE is a tutorial by Suzy that can help you achieve this realistic look.

4.  There is no denying that the layout examples in this blog post are full of fabulous drop shadows.  I realize that the subject of drop shadowing is a controversial one in the digi world, but I believe that adding a realistic drop shadow to an element adds to the layout’s texture.  Go HERE if you would like to learn more about drop shadows.

5.  Texture is meant to be a supporting role, not the star of the show.

When creating your next digital layout, why not consider adding a variety of textures to your masterpiece?

Please stop by MY BLOG today for a free fully-loaded template (template/quickpage combo) that is bursting with fabulous textures!

Using Photo Prompts to Improve Your Photography

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I (Katie) am always looking for ways to improve my photography skills, so I love taking online classes and reading posts about photography. I also realize that the only way to actually become a better photographer is to keep on taking pictures! Yep, it’s one of those things that you have to practice at. Of course, I can always pick up the camera and take a photo of my kids, my dog, or my house, but I also long for inspiration to help me branch out and try new things. I crave photo prompts, and I love that you can find so many great ones (for free) right on the internet. I thought it would be fun to share some of my favorite resources for photography idea lists with all of you.

 

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Capture Your 365 – Katrina Kennedy’s site (yes, the same Katrina that writes about photography right here at The Daily Digi!) Katrina offers a free printable pdf document each month with a photo prompt for every day. I’ve been collecting these as long as she has been offering them. I have them stored in my Google Docs account so I can access them from any mobile device or computer. You could also print them all out to keep in your camera bag. One of these days I will actually complete an entire month of prompts! You can find the pdf for May right here and access past lists right here. This month, Katrina is hosting an extra May Merriment challenge of exploring themes throughout the month of May. You can read more about it in this post.

 

iheartfaces is a fun site that hosts a weekly photography challenge. Of course, the focus is on the faces at this site, so keep that in mind as you look at their photo prompts. You can find out what’s on the agenda for the next few weeks by visiting this page. The challenge for this week is “Soft and Sweet” – fun!

 

Rebecca Cooper (who is a very talented paper scrapper) is offering a free Spring photo pdf checklist on her blog. I’m not sure if this is something she is planning to continue, but she does have some beautiful photography on her blog! I really like her “Simple Things” series.

 

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Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman) issues “Photography Assignments” on her photography blog. She picks a theme and people from all over the world submit their photos to her photography assignments Flickr group. She highlights several of her favorites and picks a winner. I always feel so inspired by these posts! You can find all of the past photography assignments right here.

 

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The Digital Photography School site always has a lot of photography inspiration to keep me motivated. I also like the weekly photography assignments issued in their forum. Great ideas!

 

Is anyone surprised that I would list flickr here? I LOVE flickr! There are many groups on flickr that will help you with photo prompts and inspiration. It’s a BIG community and chances are, you’ll be able to find at least a few photography challenges to be inspired by. Groups are the way to go on flickr, you can join them and play along, or just use the ideas as prompts. Some of my favorite groups are:

 

I know that many digital scrapbook forums also offer photography idea lists and prompts. Do you have any favorite resources to share? I’d love to hear about them!

 

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Look What’s In Store This Month

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It’s the first day of May and for many of our members it’s just like Christmas! Today is the day that new downloads are added to their accounts, for those that have been subscribed since October, they will get a double dose as their next exclusive kit was add to their accounts as well (more on that later).  Let me introduce you to this month’s contributors:

Gina Miller
Studio Vivarant
Nanie’s Designs (templates)
Pixel Gypsy
Heather (Hess) Joyce (fonts)
Lyndsay Riches
Mye De Leon

These designers’ contributions are truly amazing and our team has already had so much fun creating with them!  I can’t wait to start revealing the contents this week!

Each designer has contributed a more than FULL collection and you will be getting a bargain, especially when you sign up to become a member.  As a member, you never have to worry about missing an issue of The Digi Files again, you get them automatically each month!  Plus, when you sign up for the Digi Game level of membership, you get our interactive ebook called, the “Playbook”.  It has lots of tips, techniques, tutorials, and a video this month as well.  It also includes a couple of free gifts to help you practice what you learn.  Also, as a member you get access to exclusive kits every 4 months you are subscribed (and they are HUGE).  All of this for only $7.50/month OR get one month free by signing up for the annual membership.  At the end of this month, all of these designers’ goodies will return to their stores for full retail value (at least $7.50 for each kit and $5.00 for the templates and fonts).  It’s a great way for you to try some new-to-you designers at very low risk!  Try their designs, try their styles, you just might find a new favorite!

The random winners from yesterday’s comments are:
RKSP
Tamara
Julia Spencer
Sarah
Diane
Mary (Happy Now)
Lori P

Welcome to May!