You have to listen if you want to write

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My parents are visiting my house right now, so I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to spend several full days with them. It’s been fun to watch them interact with my children, and also nice to have the time to just sit around and chat. The other night I was asking my Mom something about her father and somehow it brought up that she interviewed him (and recorded it on tape) shortly before he died. I commented on how great that was and she said “Yes, but I really did it wrong.” I couldn’t imagine what would be “wrong” about that interview so I asked her. She replied that she spent too much time trying to ask him certain questions. She said “If I could do it over again, I would just push record and let him talk.” I’ve thought about that a lot over the past few days and have come to realize how brilliant that really is. Of course she didn’t do anything “wrong” by conducting a more formal interview with him, but the idea of just listening to someone talk is probably some of the best advice I could ever think of to find meaningful material for journaling. Listening to what people are saying when they are just talking, is a wonderful way to discover who they really are and what is important to them. You can find out things you would never think to ask, and you will gain a great appreciation for their experiences and their personal story.

After thinking about what my Mom said, I decided to try and be more aware of what my parents were just openly sharing with me during this visit. The other night, we were driving to get a hamburger together and my Dad and my son were having a funny conversation. My Dad said something like ‘Don’t play mental checkers with your Grandpa because I’ll win” and we all laughed. Then he also joked about how he might win in real checkers because he learned from his own father who was nearly unbeatable at the game. He told us that it wasn’t until late in his Dad’s life that he could actually win in a game of checkers against my Grandfather. I had no knowledge or memory of my Grandpa playing checkers, and I really didn’t know that my Dad is also good at the game. I only found this tidbit out through listening. I’m sure I would have never thought to ask it as an interview question. I’ve been entertaining the idea in my head for days now – trying to imagine my Dad and his own father playing checkers. I’ve wondered if my son could have beat him (he’s pretty good at the game as well), or who would win in a match between my Dad and my son? A simple overheard conversation led to a lot of reflection AND gave me some great journaling material for this layout:

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It’s All Fun & Games Triple Dip by Jenn Barrette, Julie Billingsley, & Libby Pritchett. Fonts are Fontologie Textura Traced and Calibri.

 

If you are looking for inspiration in the journaling department, remember to put on your listening ears. Just pay attention to the conversations that are naturally happening all around you. I bet you will find something interesting to write (and scrap) about!

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P.S. Corinne was the random winner selected from the comments on yesterday’s post.  She won $10 to the Ette’s store.

P.S.S  Mary(HappyNow) was the random winner selected from those that entered the Reader Challenge, JUST SCRAP!! She won $10 in product from the Ettes as well! 🙂

FAYETTE OF THE “ETTES”: From Tole Painter to Digital Designer

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The Ettes!  You can’t help but fall in love with their designs and with them!  I have really enjoyed getting to know Fayette over the past few months as we have emailed.  She is truly a delight!  Her adorable word art is perfect for any title or sub-title.  I LOVE her cute hand-drawn elements and doodles that fill her collections.  I quickly fell in love with Fayette’s stick figures she included in “Sandbox Summer”  that is included in The Digi Files this month.  Let’s take a closer look:

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Here are some layouts created using Fayette’s contribution:

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Layout by Trina. Supplies: “Sandbox Summer” by Fayette Terlouw of “The Ettes” and included in The Digi Files #30; Template by SAS Designs.
LO2
Layout by Jacki. Supplies: “Sandbox Summer” by Fayette Terlouw of “The Ettes” and included in The Digi Files #30.
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Layout by Heddy. Supplies: “Sandbox Summer” by Fayette Terlouw of “The Ettes” and included in The Digi Files #30; House Blends NSD 2011 (template) by Jenn Lindsey.

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Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Template: K. Winiecki, Photo Mask: Jenn Lindsey, Font: Jenn Pen

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

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I am Fayette Terlouw and designed in the craft/tole painting industry for years under the name of Fayette Skinner. I recently met one of the ladies on my creative team, and she about died of shock when I told her this…she has all of my tole painting books, and didn’t know that I was “that” Fayette 🙂

I live in a little town called Garland in Northern Utah (and when I say little…I mean it. I think we have a population of 2,000 here! I love it!) I have been married to a wonderful Dutch guy named Kees (pronounced “Case”) for 12 years. We have two daughters, one son and six grandkids that we adore! My dad lives with Kees and I – he suffers from Parkinson’s Disease and Macular Degeneration, so I have the opportunity to “give back” to him – a great way to thank him for being a fantastic Dad!

I graduated from Utah State University with a BS in Business Education. After working for several years, and having my second daughter, I decided that I wanted to stay home with my kids. So, I began doing crafts and selling them at boutiques & craft fairs. I soon turned to designing, which opened up a whole new world to me…literally! I’ve had the opportunity to travel around the world and teach scrapbooking and tole painting classes – my favorite trips were to China and Australia!

HOME STORE

MY MEMORIES

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FACEBOOK

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I LOVE digi scrapping – much easier to clean up from! I create all of my own Quick Pages – I love working with my kits before I release them…sometimes it leads to additional elements. It always gives me a good feel for the kit!

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SUPPLIES: Blue Skies Kit.

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I have been a “doodler” all of my life. From volunteering for any art projects in school, to painting the windows in my parents’ home for the holidays…I’ve always dabbled in art. My love of art became less of a hobby and more of a career when I fell in love with tole painting. I began designing and publishing my original tole painting patterns in 1992 through Provo Craft. Even though my first love was painting, my move into the scrapbooking world was a natural one. My publisher invited several designers to produce a line of papers and stickers…that was in 1996. Since then, I’ve been fortunate enough to design more paper scrapping products than I can count! I’ve also designed porcelain and resin figurines, pewter designs, counted cross-stitch patterns, stamps, and clipart cd’s.

I began “moving” into the digi world several years ago (although I really resisted designing on the computer – that didn’t seem like “real art” to me at the time. (Ha! See my “Digital Diva Layout” ) My design partner, Annette Ward, and I decided to take the leap and make digi designing as The “Ettes” our full time pursuit. That was over two years ago and we haven’t looked back (we do still design products for the paper scrapping industry occasionally)! It’s been exciting, and very fulfilling to make a living doing something that I love so much.

Although I rarely design anything with a paint brush in my hand anymore, I still love the entire design process. I love working on the computer with the graphics programs, learning new things, and seeing just what interesting designs I can come up with.

You may wonder why I design under the name “The Ettes”. Well, here’s the story: Several years ago, Annette and I worked with a great sales rep. He grew a bit weary of trying to keep our names straight, so he decided that he would simplify things for everyone and just call us the “Ettes”. You know…AnnETTE and FayETTE…our names both end in “ETTE”. It made sense to us…and well, it stuck. We’ve been designing under our adopted name ever since. We even call our designs “Dig-ETTE-al Kits” Cute, huh?

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I’m inspired by everything…my grandkids, nature, magazines, billboards…sometimes just seeing two or three unusal colors together can inspire me – just anything that triggers that creative side of my brain!

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COMPTUER: I use a Windows PC with 8 gb of ram

PROGRAM: CS4 – Adobe Illustrator & Photoshop. I create all of my hand-drawn elements in Illustrator and LOVE giving them “life” in Photoshop.

CAMERA: Canon Rebel XT…love it!

ANYTHING ELSE: I do a TON of my drawing with my Wacom Intuos 3 Tablet. It was a bit hard to get used to, but now I couldn’t design without it! I also use a scanner – I still love to doodle on paper. So, I scan my doodles and do it digi style! I’m going to tackle extractions one of these days….in my spare time!

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Save, SAVE…..and SAVE OFTEN! I can’t shout this loud enough! Make it a habit. It’s painful when you lose a project because your program crashes or the power goes out. Yes, I have learned the hard way. I only lost things a few dozen times before I finally learned – grin! It’s been ages since I lost anything…it’s finally a habit with me…knock on wood!

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It’s so hard to pick a favorite..it’s usually what I’m working on. But, I do have to say that I’m totally in love with my “Little Moments • Big Memories” designs…I went a bit crazy with those little stick kids, and built an add-on kit of just stick figures!

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Zoo Crew – my customers tend to love my goofy little creatures in this kit 🙂

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Here are some of my favorite products by Fayette:

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

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All Products in The Ettes Shop at Pickleberrypop will be discounted 30% June 6, 2011, so don’t wait!

Go have a look in Fayette’s store! We will randomly select a winner from the comments to win $10.00 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify)!

Inspired by Fayette of the Ettes

The following layouts were created using “Sand Box Summer” (and Sandbox Summer Add On Kit, and Sandbox Summer Word Art) by Fayette and included in The Digi Files during June, 2011:

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Layout by Julie
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Layout by Joanna
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Layout by Joanna
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Layout by Liberty
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Layout by MaryRuth
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Layout by Yvonne
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Layout by Heather
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Layout by Sam
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Layout by Melanie
Layout by Alanna

How To Create a Word Cloud

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A word cloud is grouping of words.  There are many fun a creative used for word clouds (especially in home décor).  We have talked about Wordle on several episodes of the Digi Show.  Katie and I decided awhile back that it would be fun to do a post on Wordle.  As I started researching, I found a couple of other sites that do similar things.

Most of these sites do not export high resolution images.  I found a great work around by using a free plugin called doPDF.  Installing doPDF creates a printer option called doPDF.  When you print, select doPDF as your printer and you will be prompted to find a location to save the file to.  This will save the file you created as a PDF.  When you open the PDF in PSE or PS it will be a high resolution image.  You can also open the PDF in Illustrator and save the file as an SVG file for use with your personal cutter or save it as an ai file to create text paths, etc.

One of the other online apps that I found to create word clouds is ABCya.com (I thought that was a super cute name). It’s geared to kids, is super easy to use, but has less options than other sites.

My favorite of all of the sites is Tagxedo.  This site has almost limitless possibilities for customizing your word cloud!  I created a little video showing you how I created a word cloud and some of the features it has.  I also show how I export to a PDF using doPDF and bring the word cloud into Photoshop to use it on a layout.  Have fun playing!

I Live to Create Memories

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Earlier this week I tweeted that if I didn’t do something creative soon, I might explode. It had been a pretty stressful week and I hadn’t scrapped in a couple of weeks. I love to scrap! Scrapping makes me so happy and it fills my “bucket” when I feel depleted. I saw the signs and I knew I would need to MAKE time to scrap soon. Can you relate?

I live to create memories with my family and being able to relive those memories as I scrap them and each time I look through albums, is so fulfilling! I started this layout by picking one of my photo folders and scrolled through it. I knew I had been dying to scrap with this kit by Sarah Jones that is included in The Digi Files this month, so I started in my summer folders from last year. I found these photos and knew the bright colors would work well with the colors in Sarah’s kit. I felt inspired and knew this was the right direction. I found a template by Nannie’s Designs and started pulling papers and my photos in.

I start by placing my photos first. Then, I start experimenting with the papers. I clip them to different shapes and put them in different places. I keep turning off and on papers until I am happy with the look, this is so much fun to me. Next, I pull in a few elements, but I don’t usually use too many. Last, I apply my drop shadows.

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Now it’s your turn! Come share with us what you scrapped (post a link) by 9pm ET Tuesday, June 7th and one person will be chosen randomly to win $10 in product from a contributor. The only rule is that the layout needs to be scrapped and posted in response to this challenge Smile

Digi is so Funtastic!

 

On Fridays we share with you great fun and wonderful things we have found around digiland. They might be freebies, tutorials, tips, just anything we think you will love hearing about! This is always one of my (Katie’s) favorite posts to do, and many of you have told us that it’s one of your favorite features here at The Daily Digi. So let’s get started!

 

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I’m such a sucker for any digi kit that has a camera/photography theme, so I was thrilled to see this brand new collab from the digichick designers. Love it!

 

Kate Hadfield has some new doodles inspired by her recent charity run. They will be on sale at 20% off Friday-Sunday. How cute is that little ipod playlist doodle?!

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I’m loving this new collection from Flergs and Studio Rosey Posey. It’s ginormous!

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Danielle Thompson (Kitschy Digitals) has a fun new Retro Kids pack in her shop. Danielle rocks the retro!

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Not Too Serious, by Heather T. – a fun, light-hearted kit for all the silly moments (I’ve got plenty of those to scrap about), 20% off @ MScraps till Monday!

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Ju Kneipp has a new collection this week, with special discount. You’ve got to check out the tree in the kit – it’s gorgeous!

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It’s almost time for A5D’s new 555 collab – Here’s a sneak peek at what will be available on June 5th, for only $5 the first five days:

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Lauren Reid has a great deal right now on these 300 days of summer sets!

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I love this beautiful new Beloved kit from Jennifer Labre – it’s 20% off through Sunday.

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Mye de Leon and Mandy King have a fun Some Like It Hotter collab. I love those flip flops! 20% off each pack and 40% off on the bundle

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WM Squared has a great new kit out just in time for Father’s Day and it’s 20% off Friday-Sunday

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Suzy Q Scraps has a cute new Farm Yard Collection

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Scrapping with Liz is offering a great bonus with purchase of Broken Templates

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Yin has generously uploaded free templates for her recent album covers (printed with Shutterfly). Be sure to check out her blog!

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Check out Chelle’s Blog for great tutorials on how to change this Basic Black Alpha to match any kit! Or, how to use the torn paper edges to add dimension to the papers in your digi stash. Plus, every Wednesday, Chelle has a “How To” tutorial about all kinds of great tips to make your scrapping time go farther!

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Jenn Lindsey has a few new $2 template shots in her store. Check them out!

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Create a pebble alpha to match any page with Misty Cato’s Build an Alpha set.

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Cindy Schneider has a fun new card template set. Great idea!

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After looking at all of these great digi designs, I’m in the mood to get digi scrapping! How about you?

P.S. Sue was the random winner chosen from yesterday’s comments, she won $10 in product from Sarah Jones!!  Check your email Sue!

SARAH JONES: I Consider That My Home

DesignersStudioI discovered Sarah a long time ago and instantly fell in love with her bright, bold colors, her fun and funky patterns, and her ALPHAS!! The first kit I purchased of Sarah’s, was “Love Me, Love Me” and I had to have it for all of those reasons (especially that alpha).  I find her designs super inspiring and am usually dying to scrap with them!  Sarah’s contribution to The Digi Files this month is no exception!  Let’s take a closer look at “Freestyle”:

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Here are some layouts created using Sarah Jones’ contribution:

LO1

Layout by SirScrapalot. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Template by Zinnias and Swallowtails; Shadows by One Little Bird; Photo Action by My Four Hens; Font: The Bold and The Beautiful by Heather Hess.
LO2
Layout by Karen. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Template by Emily Merritt; Font: F25 Executive.
LO3
Layout by Lauren. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Stick Arounds (tape) by Lauren Reid; Fauxware (screws) by The Tattered Pear; Doodles (freestyled by me); Font: Courier New.
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Layout by Jacki. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30.

LO5

Layout by Heddy. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; House Blends (template) by Jenn Lindsey.

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

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InTheStudioWith

I’m Sarah Jones, from York, Nebraska. I graduated with a degree in Marketing from the University of Nebraska. I work full-time running a college bookstore. I couldn’t ask for a better job although it seriously cuts into my computer time! I have been married for 8 years to Jereme, who is a teacher and football coach. We have one son, Noah, who is 7. At our house you can always find someone watching, playing or taking about sports. We also have a 3 year old Golden Retriever named Mayzie and a cat named Pickle.

STORE

BLOG

FACEBOOK

NEWSLETTER

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I typically don’t scrap much, except once a year to make a calendar for grandmas and great-grandmas for Christmas. But this year I have been particularly inspired with the kits I have designed and I actually scrapped. This layout uses “Blizzard Conditions”.

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SUPPLIES: Blizzard Conditions.

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I started digi-scrapping in 2004, shortly after Noah was born. I discovered signature-making on a parenting board and someone on the signature board introduced me to digi-scrapping. It gave me something to do when up at all hours of the night with a newborn! I began selling in May of 2005 and the rest is history! Most of my time has been at the DigiChick, and I consider that my “home”!

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I am inspired by colors mostly, as a start. Then I usually try and make a list of what I want in the kit or paper pack. I do love a good checklist (the checking-off part especially!) so this really helps the process along!

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I use a Dell laptop for designing. It has 3gb of ram. I am probably stuck in the dark ages, but I have always used Paint Shop Pro 8 for most of my designing. I am getting to the point where I use Photoshop (CS2) more and more. I also use ArtRage . I am in the process of teaching myself Illustrator. My camera is a Kodak P712. One of these days I need to take the time to learn how to use it for more than just the auto setting. I use the Wacom Graphire tablet from time to time. Whenever I am designing, I am watching a movie or TV show (thanks hulu.com!) on the left side of the screen. Makes for not much room on the other side to have my programs open, but it is one of my “must-haves”!

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I have created actions for quite a few processes that get rather tedious: from making alphas to creating previews. It really helps speed things up which is good because I have such limited time to design!

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My favorite kit is always the most recent one I have done. And this kit for Daily Digi is no exception. I am in love with the colors and patterns. But I think I will always have a soft spot for Woodsie becuase the colors were inspired by a cute little onsie Noah had when he was a baby. I love all the patterns and outdoorsy feel of this kit.

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I would have guessed that my best-selling kit was “Saying I Love You,”  but when I looked, it is actually “Love Me, Love Me.” Must be the bling and pretty colors!

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Here are some of my favorite products by Sarah Jones:

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Here are some more inspirational layouts using Sarah Jones’ products. All of the layouts are linked to the originals with credits.

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Go have a look in Sarah Jones’ store! We will randomly select a winner from the comments to win $10.00 in product from her store! (Comments must be posted before midnight EST to qualify)!

As a special thanks to readers of The Daily Digi, Sarah has provided this coupon for 30% off a purchase of $5 or more. Code: TDD30 expires June 30, 2011.

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Inspired by Sarah Jones

The following layouts were created using “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files during May, 2011:

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Layout by SharonS, additional supplies: Template: Jenn Lindsey, Ribbon: JennCK, Font: CK Elusive

LO1

Layout by SirScrapalot. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Template by Zinnias and Swallowtails; Shadows by One Little Bird; Photo Action by My Four Hens; Font: The Bold and The Beautiful by Heather Hess.
LO2
Layout by Karen. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Template by Emily Merritt; Font: F25 Executive.
LO3
Layout by Lauren. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; Stick Arounds (tape) by Lauren Reid; Fauxware (screws) by The Tattered Pear; Doodles (freestyled by me); Font: Courier New.
LO4
Layout by Jacki. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30.

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Layout by Heddy. Supplies: “Freestyle” by Sarah Jones and included in The Digi Files #30; House Blends (template) by Jenn Lindsey.

Can You Believe, Digi Files #30

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Can you believe today we are launching the 30th issue of The Digi Files today? It was also a year ago this month that we launched our very first Playbook!  It’s exciting to see all of the growth and fun things that have happened around here as we pass these landmarks.

I’m super excited to be welcoming these fabulously talented designers to The Digi Files this month! They have all worked so hard and created some AWESOME designs!  Our team has had so much fun working with them already and I have no doubt you will love them too!  So, a BIG WELCOME to:

Sarah Jones
Fayette of the “Ettes”
Kitty Designs
Baers Garten
Forever Joy
Jady Day Studio
The Digi Chick

Many of our members have already downloaded these products and they didn’t even have to go through the hassle of loading it in a cart and checking out through PayPal! They just logged in and felt the anticipation all of us do as we discover what the next issue of The Digi Files has inside (yes, the team and I feel the same excitement each month).  In just a few days, I will upload some extra goodies I have in the works right now and it will be fun surprises all over again! Don’t forget to mention all of the exclusive kits members of The Digi Game level get every four months their account is active. Soooo much for such an unbelievably low price.

You can cancel at anytime, if you decide it doesn’t work for you.

Katie and I LOVE reading all of the comments on the last day of the month!  So many of you take time to tell us so many nice things and we really appreciate it!  We are all busy and we know you aren’t any less busy, so thanks for taking the time to share!  Here are the random winners from yesterday’s comments:

Theresa
Julie Rae
Melanie
Tamara
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Sarah
Kelly K

Each person won $10 in product from one of the designers that contributed to The Digi Files during May.  Coupons have been emailed so check your email gang!