Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Chrismas Is Coming!

Christmas is definitely on it's way and we wanted to share some of our favorite new products for the holiday season! Worried about shipping...don't be; we can have your order filled and shipped before you can decide which project you'll begin first!

Although there's not much of a chance for flurries here in Arizona, I plan to create my own little blizzard with some of our Snowflake products. We have new borders in both sparkling glittered white cardstock and chipboard, as well as a new Snowflake Corner design - so let it snow let it snow let it snow!

Although there's only that slim chance you'll see flurries in much of Arizona, it's pretty much a guarantee that you'll see these uniquely Arizona decorations as you take a drive down neighborhoods in the southwest...Saguaro cactus covered in Christmas lights! We couldn't resist creating one that you can add to everything from Christmas cards and letters to your holiday scrapbooks. Choose from either our multi-colored light design (#263) or our white lights design (#280) for your project - I'm hoping Santa tucks a few of each in my stocking!
Since Santa isn't the only one with a mile long gift list how about creating a whole collection of unique ornaments to give as gifts?
We've created a wonderful line of Chipboard Ornaments that are not only beautiful but so easy to finish! Make these little guys really special by adding some special of my favorite ways to embellish these is by spraying with Glimmer Mist and then highlighting special features with a touch of can complete dozens of these in an hour! You can even get the kids involved - let them decorate some of our Large Photo Ornaments for family and friends and then tuck a picture in for a one of a kind gift perfect for teachers and grandparents!
So grab yourself a hot cup of cocoa and settle down in front of your computer and check out all the new goodies we've added to the website...don't forget to peek in both the Christmas section (under Holidays) as well as our Winter section (found in Seasons) and get ready to 'have yourself a merry little Christmas".

Thursday, November 12, 2009

More for Fall

With Thanksgiving a week away, there's still plenty of time to get those creative juices running. Let these great Fall products inspire you to create projects for everything from the changing of the leaves, Thanksgiving, and don't forget Football and tailgating!Nothing beats dressing up a project with a quick border! Try adding one of these Leaf Borders (Product # 521, 522, 523) to a quick mini-album or card, or try what I did by making a quick Name Card for your Thanksgiving table! A simple pocket design with a slide out tag will allow each of your guests to write down what they are thankful for this year and will allow you to preserve those memories easier than ever!

One of my favorite new designs has to be this elegant Autumn Leaf Round Border, it's simple yet stylish design couldn't be easier to use. To embellish this one, try using an ink pad in natural colors to add a rustic feel. Feeling extra creative...venture into new territory and liberally spray with one of the new spray inks for an immediate transformation (we've tried Glimmer Mist, Walnut Inks, and Maya Road-all with EXCELLENT results!); embellish with glitter, bling, or try adding a little "Smooch" (a pearlized accent ink) to bring out the leaf details!

For all you crafters looking for a little flair, try adding our new Modern Leaves Chipboard design, it's perfectly sized for just about any project and couldn't be more versatile! Use it as a border, an embellishment or even as an oversized photo corner for that big family post-turkey portrait (don't you LOVE that idea)!

We're also very excited to introduce you to our newest chipboard alphabet design! Our new Script Alphabet measures just about 2.5" tall and 1.5" wide (depending on the letter) and so far is an all capitals alphabet. I love this design particularly for something special, like holiday celebrations or weddings; I can't help but think it's perfect for monogram designs and titles for a special layout!

Okay folks...are you ready for some FOOTBALL?! Where I come from Fall means Football; and Football means Friday nights at the High School game, tailgate parties, time with friends, and maybe a quick pick up game with the kids! So grab your favorite team sweatshirt, put your game face on and celebrate your love of the game with a quick mini album embellished with a few of our Mini Footballs. Aren't they wait, football can't be cute...aren't they're AWESOME (insert manly grunt here)! Cheer your favorite high school team on to victory with our Megaphone Mini Album combined with your school's monogram for a truly unique project!

Now how is that for some school spirit...each of our Chipboard School Titles are designed to work perfectly with the Megaphone Album as well as the 2" tall die cut varsity letters too! Somebody blow the whistle and let's play some football!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Thanksgiving Bracket Album

I tend to forget to take pictures on Thanksgiving. There, I admitted it...all that time preparing a beautiful table and a (hopefully) delicious meal is exhausting and in the midst of all the cooking, cleaning, and company, I tend to let myself get just a bit in over my head and manage to forget to capture a few pictures. Nothing inspires me more than when I have something cute in mind to put my photos in so this year I decided that planning ahead was the way to go!
I started by using one of our wonderful bracket albums (Bracket Album #3028)to create a fun Thanksgiving album. I plunged into my scraps, including cute stickers from Debbie Mumm and 7 Gypsies, my favorite papers from Scenic Route and some Bazzil Cardstock along with a handful of flowers and brads and I was on my way.
The first pages start showing my use of repetition in this little album. Both pages incorporate a striped paper, orange cardstock, a touch of brown and just a small accent or 2 (which happen to draw upon the triangle rule to add interest). The flower accent is cut from one of the patterned papers and then I added a fun brad to add a little "pop".

I love how the next 2 pages look complex but are really so simple: one paper for each background, and one photo mat. The page on the left has a strip of the patterned paper from the right and then they each get a single sticker and then the leaves and a few little flowers.

I'm sure by now you're starting to see a "simplicity" theme here! Each page again has a single background paper, with large photo mats. The mat on the right goes completely across the page, I added just a small strip of orange to the top and bottom to help make my sticker border stand out. Other than that each page was given some brown ink and a few stickers. (Why can't they all be this simple...wait...they CAN!!)

We're more than half done now...these pages use the flowered paper that I cut my flower accents from. Using a little white on the left hand page made all the difference letting these darker fall colors feel much lighter and then of course connected it visually with the opposite page.

I decided to utilize a couple of the quote stickers on the last pages. One of my favorite things to do with a square or rectangle sticker is to add a thin mat around it's edge in a contrasting color, then mat that with a color that compliments the page. Here both quotes are matted in a white (one cardstock and one the striped paper) before adding an orange mat, and then the quote on the right is added to one of the brown cardstock squares for a triple mat effect. Again, everything is touched with a bit of brown ink (one of my favorite things).
The back cover couldn't be easier, just a big sticker double matted and accented on the corners with a touch of whatever I had left on the table when I was finished!
With the mini album finished, now I'll feel like I can't possibly skip taking pictures this Thanksgiving...if you think the project is cute now, just imagine it filled with the faces of your friends and family!
Can't squeeze out a couple hours to complete this project, there's always our cute Turkey Album Kit #3028T that you can add your photos to quicker than you can say gobble gobble gobble!

Halloween Layouts

As I recover from the late night and the sugar coma that always seems to accompany October 31st, I have to admit that if I don't get my Halloween pictures scrapped right away...well let's face it, they'll have to wait until next year! I made a couple quick and easy layouts that I thought you might find helpful in getting those Halloween pictures off your memory card and into your albums!

The first one is great to show off your kid's costumes, or just to showcase some of the Trick-or-Treat fun you have on Halloween night! Here's a list of the things you'll need to recreate this layout:
2 12 x 12 sheets black cardstock (or one full sheet and one scrap 5" x 10")
1 12 x 12 sheet in each: orange, and purple cardstock
2 Corner Spider Webs in Black #782
1 Trick or Treat Border in Black #730

Starting with the black cardstock as my background, I trimmed the orange cardstock down to 11 3/4" x 11 3/4" so when layered we get a nice sense of dimension. At the base of the layout, add the Trick or Treat border centered on the page. Now we'll need the purple cardstock cut into 3 pieces each measuring 3" x 4 3/4", these will be our photo mats. To back the purple, we'll need a piece of black cardstock cut 5" x 10". Adhere the 3 purple pieces to the black mat background. When you add your photos, you have a number of possibilities; try a single "panoramic" style measuring 9 1/4" x 4 1/2", 2 photos each measuring 4 1/2" x 4 1/2", or 3 photos measuring 2 3/4" x 4 1/2". Lastly add the spider webs into each corner, about 1/4" inside the edge of the orange cardstock. There you have it, the first one's done!

Okay, for the second layout, I decided to add a little sparkle to my page using glittered accents and just a touch of "bling"! To complete this layout you'll need the following:
1 12 x 12 sheet purple cardstock (or a scrap 12" x 1 1/2")
1 12 x 12 sheet light green cardstock
4 glittered pumpkins of your choice ( I used # 606GGL, 606FGL, 606EGL, and 606CGL)
1 Ivy Border in Black #418
1 Ivy Border in Black #418-12
1 Chipboard Border #6119
24 flat backed rhinestones (12 orange, 6 purple and 6 green)
Black acrylic paint
1 Inch foam brush

Begin by painting the Chipboard Border black using a little acrylic paint and your foam brush. We always recommend that you purchase a good quality acrylic paint such as Americana or Delta, these have a lower water content and will not buckle your chipboard like some of the more inexpensive paints tend too. Remember to get a good coating on the top and to get the sides as well. If you'd rather skip the paint, you can always use a good black ink pad to transform your chipboard border, just press the border directly onto the ink pad! Set the border aside to dry.
Time add the purple border to the top and bottom of the green. Cut 2 strips of purple to measure 12" x 3/4" each, glue these to the bottom of the page. When the chipboard border is completely dry, glue it to the top of the purple cardstock strip overlapping by about 1/4". The Ivy border is next, the smaller one belongs in the upper left hand corner, just below the chipboard border and just inside the edge of the page. Add the larger Ivy Border by starting in the lower right corner, again just above the chipboard border. The longer border will reach nearly from edge to edge. Now it's time to assemble and add those glittering pumpkins (check out our last blog post for helpful instructions). 2 will be placed in the upper right hand corner adn 2 in the lower left hand corner. Lastly using a good craft glue or glue dots, add the rhinestones to really add some sparkle. Now just grab a few of your favorite Halloween or Pumpkin Patch photos and you're all set!
I don't know about you, but just getting these 2 layouts completed and into my albums makes me feel pretty darn good! Now we can start to tackle our Thanksgiving and Christmas are you ready?!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

It's the Great Pumpkin!

Nothing says Halloween to me like a lovingly carved Jack-O-Lantern! I fell completely in love with these new Pumpkin Faces the minute I saw them! Not only are there 10 fun designs to choose from, but they feature a wonderful combination of vibrant glittering orange paper, chipboard, and black cardstock! The best part is the new glitter paper, not only is the color beautiful with flawless coverage but the glitter actually stays on the paper! Whoo hoo! No more grocery shopping with glitter on my face! Okay, I'll admit that's happened more than once...and honestly it will probably happen again. Not only are they so cute you'll want a whole pumpkin patch full of these guys, you can put them together quicker than you can say "trick or treat"!One tip we found useful was to begin with the bottom cardstock layer, then put your dry adhesive (like a tape runner) on the back of the chipboard layer.
This will let you make sure you won't have adhesive showing through the openings. Lastly add the glittering layer in the same manner.
If you do happen to end up with sticky stuff showing through; I like to use a toothpick to clean out those tough to reach spots!
It should be pretty obvious that we've caught what I like to call the "Bling Bug"...add a little sparkle to something and watch it POP! Along with our glittering Pumpkin Faces we've also created a fan favorite for Halloween, the Black Cat, in glittering black paper as well as updating our Witch's Hat to include just a touch of purple sparkle.
Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

It's Finally Fall!

Even here in Arizona the signs of Fall's arrival are unmistakeable! Throughout the valley school is in full swing, fall sports are starting up and of course apples and pumpkins are showing up on every corner! From here it feels like a non-stop rush to the end of the year; with Back to School, Fall Festivals, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and of course Christmas right around the corner. Don't fear crafters...stick with us and we'll help you create projects and pages that will not only keep you ahead of schedule but even feeling like there's still time to enjoy it all! To start things off let's think about Back to School; each year our kids head to the classroom to meet new teachers, see old friends, share stories of "What I Did On My Summer Vacation", not to mention the shopping for new supplies and the ever important selection of the "First Day Outfit"! We hope you'll take a minute to check out all our latest School Products, everything from Elementary School basics to products to declare your School Pride or even to prepare you for Graduation. Remember what your teachers taught you and don't wait until the last minute to cram it all into your scrapbooks!

It's HALLOWEEN!! Anyone who knows me is well aware of my love for this fun and spooky seasonal celebration! So when new products are designed with Halloween in mind I can hardly wait to share them with you...the hardest part is deciding which ones to tell you about first! You see it all depends on what you love about Halloween the most; is it Pumpkins, Skeletons, Spooky Houses, Black Cats and Flying Bats, or how about Trick or Treating until the sugar coma sets in?! It actually doesn't matter because WE HAVE IT ALL!! So heed my warning my pretties, it's best to just start at the beginning and work your way through all the Halloween Products, I'd hate to have to drop a house on your sister but I would!

Stick with me guys, I know it's long but we're getting there!
Fall's arrival also reminds us that Summer is definitely over, but we've come up with a new album design to help you remember all the wonderful details of that summer road trip! You have got to check out the new Licence Plate Albums...SO CUTE!! So far we are offering them for Arizona, California, Nevada and New Mexico. As if they weren't cute enough we've added chipboard "Frame Names" to let you personalize your album with some of the most popular destinations in each state! Combine them with some of our Scenic Die cuts for a truly stunning display!

Think Pink!

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness's time to THINK PINK ladies! It's a great time to remember the importance of your health. Each year lives are saved through awareness, early diagnosis and through improved treatment techniques. Throughout the world people unite in the fight against Breast Cancer and we'd like to salute each and every one of you who has been touched by Breast Cancer in one way or another and for all who hope for a cure! We've created a special Survivor Ribbon Card, as well as a Chipboard Survivor Ribbon, and a Pink Die Cut Ribbon to commemorate Breast Cancer Awareness month, take care of yourselves know we love ya!

Okay, I hear you out there saying "Sarah...what about Christmas?" Well, here's the deal, we are going to knock your socks off, but I'm only going to give you a taste and then you'll just have to come back and see me me it's worth waiting for!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Patriotic Border

I love the new collection of Chipboard borders and knew instantly that I wanted to try a patriotic project with the Star Border #6107. It was so simple and turned out so cute that I just had to share it with you guys.
Chipboard Border #6107 (Star)
Fireworks 1 #358
Delta Acrylic Paint "Fire Red"
Small paintbrush
Blue Cardstock
Star Punch
6 small flat backed crystals

Begin by painting your border with "Fire Red". Painting directly onto the natural chipboard will give a darker, more rustic appearance. If you prefer a brighter red, first paint the chipboard with a solid coat of white. To achieve an even appearance try painting 2 light coats instead of one heavy coat and be careful with those brushstrokes, we don't want them to show. Acrylic paint dries quickly so take a moment to clean out your brush with some warm soapy water and pat dry.Next step is to prepare your small stars. Using your star punch and the blue cardstock punch out 6 stars for the border.
Attach the blue stars to the border using a small amount of adhesive. The border has a total of 13 chipboard stars, starting with the first apply a blue star on every other one except the center, where we'll place the fireworks.
Once the stars are attached, use a tiny amount of adhesive to attach the crystals to the center of the blue stars. Allow a minute or two to dry. Finally assemble the fireworks and attach to the center star of the border and (drum roll please) you're done!

New Products for July!

Summer is a wonderful time to slow down and enjoy all the special activities we enjoy this time of year. From back yard barbeques and swimming lessons, summer sports, family vacations, and of course every kids highlight, the 4th of July!
Our focus with the new products for July was to make your scrapbook projects even more memorable by adding a few special touches without adding too much work! We have an entire line of new Chipboard borders that are so charming and easy to embellish you won't know which one you want to try first! For those of us who really like to keep things simple, the new collection of borders are designed to pair perfectly with the Bazzill line of "Just the Edge" cardstocks...nothing could be easier!
Before moving to Arizona, my family lived in a small town in Wyoming and nothing in that area was more exciting than the summer rodeo, drawing people from all over the country to see the Best of the West! We've added even more to our Western Collection this month including this Bull Rider, a Barbed Wire Chipboard Border, wonderful Cowboy Boots and of course no Western project would be complete without a few Horseshoes!
Sunshine isn't the only thing summer brings, there's always a wedding or family gathering planned and we've created some new wonderful die cuts to help you commemorate these unforgettable days! New heart and flower die cuts in a beautiful silver satin paper will make the perfect addition to any wedding project and I just love the new "Time for Memories" die cut and can't wait to add it to my family reunion page!
You'll have to check out our growing collection of Scenic Titles to see how many of our destinations you've seen in your summer travels, how about Paris, New York, or the Grand Canyon! Of course as much as I'd like to say I'm all caught up with my scrapbook pages, I am still working on past projects. One example, Easter...luckily this month brought a fantastic collection of new Easter products that will make my work so much easier (and much more fun)! By adding a little paint and paper glaze this chipboard word looks good enough to eat!
I hope you love our new products as much as I do, check back to see some of the fun projects designed to make the most of these new goodies and I can't wait to share my new way of embellishing the chipboard...just when I thought nothing could be easier...surprise, something is!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Last Year's Teacher Gifts

Having a great selection of wonderful chipboard embellishments at my fingertips is probably the greatest "perk" to working for Unique Pages. Last year when the end of the year came around and I wanted to make a little something for my teachers I was able to throw these projects together in an evening. I'm still working on finishing this years projects but thought you might enjoy these! For my son's kindergarten teacher we went with some of her favorite colors as inspiration.
I'm certainly not the first to create one of these altered lunchboxes, but I was so happy with how the entire project came together (thanks to my buddy Tina for working with me on this one)!
Combining pink cardstock, chipboard letters, felt flowers, ribbon and cute paper we were able to create a great little "thank you" for our kids' kindergarten teacher. A lot of times I see the paper decoupaged onto the tin, in an effort to keep things a little cleaner, we skipped the decoupage and simply used tape runner adhesive to attach everything. I still pop in to see Ms. Evans now and again and she keeps this on her desk far everything has stayed attached!
We began with the inner lid, covering it in paper, then attaching a layered cardstock piece vertically with "Thank" printed on it embellished with little pink prima flowers and added our Fancy Lower Case 'YOU" covered in patterned paper. Then we filled it with supplies that any teacher could use and made sure they were decorated to match the tin.

Here's a list of what was inside:
Elmer's Glue "You're the Glue that holds our class together"
White Chalk "Chalk one up to an awesome teacher"
Cute Post-it Notes "Thanks for such a noteworthy year"
Ever sharp Pencils "You sharpened my mind"
Stapler and Staples "Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic, Thanks for teaching me the staples"
Scissors "You're a cut above the rest"
Thumbtacks "Thanks to you I'm sharp as a tack"
Highlighters "You're the highlight of my year"
Yummy French Mints from Cerrettas Chocolates "You're worth a mint to me!"

On to my daughter's teacher, whose last name is Hopson and she happens to LOVE frogs...which was perfect inspiration for her gift.
I used a different shaped tin for this one, and couldn't be happier with the way it turned out (although I admit I could be happier with the way the picture turned out but...oh well).

Going with the frogs as our theme, I covered the outside in Bazzill bling cardstock. The front has a layered tag that reads "Mrs. Hopson Your class is TOADALLY awesome". I used a bit of ribbon at the bottom combined with a chipboard flower. All I did to finish the flower was to rub it with brown ink...THATS IT and it was perfect!
On the back I added more of the ribbon and a huge green flower. The center of the flower is a chipboard circle, finished with ink like the flower on the front. Only this time I also added a layer of Diamond Glaze to add a glassy shine. I ended up gluing this down, but in hindsight wish I'd have made it a magnet of the best things about these lunch tins for teachers is they make wonderful magnetic boards for desk notes!
The inside is filled with almost the same things as the first tin...a few difference but each teacher definitely had some of those fantastic French Mints...what more could a girl want?!

Before we were an exclusive chipboard and laser cut company, we were a small scrapbook store in Peoria, AZ. Over the last few years many local stores were forced to close their doors, I'd like to encourage everyone out there to remember how important your purchases are to the small business owner. I'd also like to say thanks to the girls at Scrapbooks to Remember for the darling frog paper and bazzill bling cardstock, it was too perfect!