Monday, November 5, 2012

Twice the Gifts In Half the Time!

Do you love to share your photos with family at the holidays?  Do you struggle with the amount of time it takes to make gifts with those photos?  If so, then Studio J could be the answer! 

For my day-to-day scrapbooking, I am a hands-on kind of girl; digital is not really my thing.  However, after trying out the new Express Collections, I know that these are perfect for holiday gifts!  Need duplicate albums for grandparents, siblings, etc.?  Do the work just once and have multiple prints made!  And the Express Collections make it faster than ever before (which was a big hurdle to digital for me).  Choose the entire Collection of 11 2-page layouts (including intro and end pages) for a theme album, or choose just the layouts you want.  There's even a great "Year in Review" collection, which I think would be great for grandparent gifts!

Oh, and did I mention that the software is completely free? You have to create an account before you start, but there is no obligation - you don't pay for anything unless you decide to purchase your project.  Let me show you the 5 layouts I recently completed. (I think it took me about 3.5 hours for all 5; not bad for my first time!)

This layout is direct from the School Days collection.  I just dropped in my photos, addte "first day of" to the title, and added my journaling details.  It was super fast, and it was easy to crop my pictures in place.

This layout is from the Year in Review collection.  I dropped in my photos, changed the duplicates to black & white, added my journaling details, and changed the "this year in" to "first day of" in the title.  I love that even though I had fewer pictures than the layout called for, it's easy to use it anyway.  The filmstrip-style row of pictures gave me the idea to duplicate a single picture on each side and only leave the one on the end in color.  The software makes it easy to switch to black & white by just clicking a box.

This one started with a Custom Layout.  That means that I first chose the paper pack I wanted to use, then found the layout pattern.  This is the Avonlea paper pack and the Backstage pattern.  This particular layout was for a class for the CTMH Regional Celebration that I attended, so they had specific directions for us to follow for many of the steps.   You can change the color and/or intensity of any paper in the layout, add embellishments, change colors of things like fonts and buttons, and more.  Feel free to play around and change anything and everything. You can always undo anything you don't like.

This layout began with the True Friend paper pack and the Honeycomb pattern.  What do I love?  This is one of many paper pack available only on Studio J, including many of those paper packs that used to be available in "real" paper that have been discontinued.  I also love the trendy hexagon shapes on this pattern - lots of fun, and you pick the exact paper patterns you want to use!

Finally, this layout uses the Class Act paper pack and the Glimpses pattern.  I based my colors and patterns on my daughter's clothes (and her favorite color).  So I used the Kit Mix 3 and change the multicolor numbers paper to Twilight and the white background to Twilight.  I added heavy black distressing to define the edges and add interest.  I also changed colors on the embellishments.

I love how fast these all were to make - I really think it would have taken me a lot less time except that I just couldn't resist playing around with everything to see what the different changes would do!

I invite you to go create an account and try out Studio J - I think you'll be hooked too!

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