A Book to Personalize

There are five different styles of My Crush Books available from Close to My Heart. The idea is to personalize them, and make them your own. If you want to take a look at the different designs available, you can find them here, on my CTMH site. 

 I made a video walk through of three different My Crush Books. Two of them belong to my mother, and one to my 20 something daughter. They both have very different styles, and chose to use their books for different purposes. 

Below the video are links to the different books available, and some of the supplies used, so that you can start decorating one of your own.

 The supplies you use are only limited by your imagination.

Supplies Used

Bluebird My Crush Book
In The Pink My Crush Book 
Chantilly Picture my Life Cards 
Base and Bling Journey Style Sheet 
Pixie Extra Thick Twine 
Cricut Artbooking Cartridge 
Cricut Art Philosophy Cartridge 
Confetti WishesYuletide CarolSnow Haven, and Brushed
paper collections.
Scraps of older paper collections and retired stamps were used also. 
Pink, Blue, and Silver shimmer trim
Stamp Sets
Rainy Day 

 Fast and Furious

 Wildwood My Crush Book
 Chalk it Up Workshop on the Go
Seaside Workshop on the Go 
Reel Life Stamp Set 
All the Details Stamp Set 

I hope you enjoy the video, and it gives you some ideas for your own Crush Book. Let me know in the comments below if you use a Crush, Smash, or similar book to document your life.



Scrapping My Favorite Subjects

Sometimes scrapping falls by the wayside and my pictures start to pile up. I'm sure you can all relate. My family takes a lot of pictures, and I really have the best of intentions.

I decided to start where I am, and try to stay current. As time allows I will go back and scrap older pictures. I hope, as all scrapbookers do, that someday my family will be happy that I took the time to document the memories.

After the video, I have links to some of the products I used to create the layouts. In case you are wondering, yes, I am wearing a nightgown with coffee cups all over it. Usually I just show my hands, so it never matters what I'm wearing. I guess I got so carried away with the glare, and camera position, I forgot about my pajamas. 

Links to Supplies Used
I hope you enjoyed the flip through. Let me know in the comments below which type of scrapbooking you prefer. I like them all.



The Basics for Beginners

I did not follow the advice I'm about to give you. I still struggle not to over buy when all the new paper collections come out, there is a sale, a new tool looks too cool to pass up, or a new Close to My Heart catalog becomes available. 

You can really get started scrapbooking, card making, etc. with very few supplies. Some tools don't have to be top of the line, but other items you really should splurge on to get the best results possible. I hope my list will help you make some informed decisions, so that you don't waste money, or time.

There is nothing worse than working hard on a handmade card, and having the layers fall apart because your adhesive didn't stick. Also, cheap paper will let you down. I have some scrapbook layouts that I have to re-do because of cheap paper, and ineffective adhesive.

  • A liquid adhesive with a great hold will allow you a little time to adjust the placement of your pictures, etc. My preferences are Tombow (available at craft stores), and Close to My Heart's  Liquid Glass.
  •  You will want double-sided tape, or a tape gun. I use the Teresa Collins Xyron tape runner because I find it easy to load the refills, it gets the job done, it fits my hand, and it's pink. 
  • Mini glue dots will help you adhere very small items without making a mess. I use Micro Glue Dots.

  •  CTMH paper packs are great because they have  double-sided prints, and solid colored cardstock, that coordinates.
  • CTMH Workshops on the Go are the same coordinating paper packs, along with a stamp set, an embelishment, and instruction booklet.
  • Graphic 45 comes out with paper packs with a lovely vintage feel. The big box craft stores don't carry a lot of Graphic 45. Amazon has the best price I have found.
  • Bo Bunny is another paper manufacturer that has great quality, and interesting themes. Again, try Amazon for the best price.
  • I do not often buy pads of paper. This is because I usually only like about half the papers in the pack. I'm then stuck with papers I don't want to use. I learned this the hard way, of course.

Seaside Workshop on the Go

Scissors and Trimmers
  • My all time favorite scissors are the Tim Holtz Ionic scissors. They are sharp, have a nice point, are comfortable to use, and the blades stay clean. They would be perfect if they came in pink.
  • The slicer that I have, finally, settled on is the Sure Cut Deluxe Paper Trimmer. I tried lots of trimmers, but this one has a nice wide base, and the replacement blades are inexpensive. 

  • You can purchase scrapbooks inexpensively at any craft store, but I would not recommend buying them. I have a few that are not in very good shape now.
  • I now use Close to My Heart Scrapbooks. They come in D-Ring, and post bound.  
  • I have seen some nicer scrapbooks, in the section of the craft stores near the Project Life supplies. I can not endorse them, as I have not tried them.
  •  Remember, you will work hard to put together layouts to preserve your memories. You want them to be protected.
  • A bone folder is a nice item to have. You can see an example of one here. They help you make a nice crease on your cards.
  •  I love my scoring boards. If you are a card maker, I think they are a must have. I have two, because one is for big projects, and one is more portable for travel. The large one I use is the Martha Stewart score board. The travel size I use is the Close to My Heart score board.
  • Having a nice mat to put down on your table is a good idea. The Versamat is a nice choice. This will help protect your table. One side is cushioned for stamping, and the other is self-healing for cutting. The grids also come in handy when lining up projects.
These are just the basics. As you continue crafting, I'm sure you will want to add stamps, inks, ribbon, twine, buttons, markers, and all sorts of embelishments. The trick is to buy what you need for each project, and not just everything that is "too cute to pass up." 
I will continue this series with more items that you will want to explore as you become more crafty.
You also might want to stay tuned as I work on getting my craft room, and office space, in order. It is something I struggle with, besides wanting to buy all of the "too cute to pass up" items.
Let me know if you agree with my beginners list. 


Organizing my Crafty Business Space

The Desk

I knew that if I didn't start my organization with the desk area, I would regret it later. I thought about all I need to do at my desk, and how to organize everything in a small space. 

  • Planning
  • Filing
  • Document Printing
  • Computer work
  •  Photo Printing
  • General Paperwork and Bill Paying for CTMH 
  • General Paperwork and Bill Paying For Home
My desk is small, as is the location of my desk. Besides being functional in a small space, I need it to be fun and pretty, or I will not want to work.

  As you can see, everything is pretty in pink, and lime green. It really is my happy work space. The chair is padded and grey to match my walls. It, along with the picture throw, was a gift from a dear friend. 

There is room for my laptop, printer, and Selphy printer. I added the bulletin board, and white metal organizer, to get some things off of my desk space. This desk only has one drawer, and two small shelves. I really had to purge, and only keep necessary items in my desk space. I also have a filing cabinet that is close by, but that will be a post all its own.

 One of the few things that sits on my desk is this little organizer from Michaels. These go on sale quite often, and come in lots of different patterns.

 I love these little pink buckets which were a gift from another friend. The little basket holds my Fuji Instimax, and a canvas given to me by one of my daughters. 

I think I purchased this metal organizer at Marshall's. It carries supplies that I really need to have on hand. By getting it up off my desk I am able to fit my label maker, pencil sharpener, and business cards on my desk.

 Yes, I try to keep all of my office supplies in coordinating colors. Doesn't everyone? The desk houses label maker refills, extra tape, staples, paper clips, binder clips, push pins, and zip drives. All of these are things I need to have close by.

 My desk is a great place to spread out my planner, as I look forward to the next week/month. I love to add stickers, different colors, and quotes to my planner. Sometimes I can get lost in planning for hours.

I have come up with a schedule that works for me, unless I have something unavoidable crop up, or a doctor's appointment. Here is how my schedule looks right now:

Monday - create/ social media connections
Tuesday - post to blog and/or Youtube
Wednesday - create/ social media connections
Thursday - post to blog and/or Youtube
Friday - desk day/customer connections/bi-weekly newsletter
Saturday - create/social media connections
Sunday - review/evaluate/plan

If I don't create projects on a regular basis I have nothing to blog, or make a video, about. I'm trying a new schedule next week to see if it will help me get more done. The first week of every month I will post about specials. The second week I will try to create based on holidays, and the Close to My Heart stamp of the month. The third week it is what ever strikes my fancy. The fourth week is series, such as this one on getting organized. 

How do you organize your desk area? Any tips or tricks? I would love to hear them.



Free Totes in March

March is the month to become a Close to My Heart consultant! During the month of March, new Consultants who enroll will receive a FREE shoulder tote (a retail value of over $26) with their New Consultant Kit. Our New Consultant Kit is just $99 USD and includes triple the retail value in products and supplies. Including your FREE shoulder tote, that is a savings of over $290 USD/$320 CAD! Additionally, new Consultants who remit $300 (USD & CAD) worth of commissionable sales in their first 40 days, after their New Consultant Kit ships, will receive the rolling tote (a retail value of $149.95 USD/$164.95 CAD) as a FREE bonus (not including shipping/handling)! These organization pieces are designed to help you get your business rolling, but they are only available while supplies last, so hurry on over and join March 1st!

You can go to my CLOSE TO MY HEART WEBSITE to check out all of the great products, and perks, you get as a Close to My Heart consultant. I would love to have you on Team Crafts for a Cure, and you can contact me at dedraclutz@hotmail.com with any questions. 

To see the totes in action watch this great video. As you can see they are well worth the retail price, but why not get yours for free?

When I joined CTMH last year it was because they were offering an item free with the consultant kit that was too good to pass up. I thought I would get the great kit, and possibly a discount on my own purchases. Once I received the products I was hooked, and began actually selling to others. 

Whether you want free products, a discount on future purchases, a way to make some extra money, or a career, March is a great time to join the fun!



A Happy Hello

I love this stamp set! It is my favorite Stamp of the Month so far. I'm sure it is going to show up on scrapbook layouts, birthday cards, and in my planner(s). 

I could have played with it all day, but I had both grandchildren over, and they were a little too helpful. My craft room is very popular with both of them. I'm really amazed I was able to film a video.

These are just a few of the mini cards I made today. I hope they will inspire you to play around with this fun stamp set. 

 I made a video to show you the entire stamp set, and how many shapes there are to play with. This stamp set is only available until February 28th. It is $17.95 or just $5 with a $50 purchase. You can see this stamp set HERE on my website.

 Don't forget that your purchases enter you in the Crafts for a Cure Club. Click on the tab at the top of the page for more information on how you can earn free products.

Let me know if you have any questions. If you have already purchased this stamp set, what have you done with it? 



Join a Fun Team Now

Now is a great time to start your own Close to My Heart Business. There is a lot of support available, whether you want to earn a little extra money, get a discount on great products, or make this your career. 

There is always room on the Crafts for a Cure Team for one and all. I would love to show you how to set up a blog, Facebook business page, etc to help grow your business. 

There are currently two great kits to choose from, and both are worth over $360. You simply go to the become a consultant section of my website, and get started.

Besides having access to support from me, there are lots of training videos, audio files, and emails you will have access to from Close to My Heart. 

If you are ready to make money sharing your love of crafting, I'm ready to help you. Contact me with any questions by emailing me at dedraclutz@hotmail.com, or leaving a comment below.


Valentines Treat Bags

Countdown Gifts for My Grandchildren

As soon as my grandchildren started opening their Christmas advent presents they began asking about Valentines and Easter countdown gifts

I really should have seen it coming. There is no way I can repeat the elaborate Christmas advent for each holiday, so I made little gift bags. The same concept, just a smaller scale so that I can actually follow through. 

Fortunately, I had already purchased adorable Valentines Treat Bags from the Close to My Heart Seasonal Expressions catalog, along with a cute stamp set. 

The treat bags are now safely on top of their 'fridge (where all parents put items they don't want gotten into, right?), waiting for tomorrow morning. We took them out to dinner so that they wouldn't drive their parents crazy until bedtime. 

Of course I made a video showing how the little treat bags came together. If you need any of these items for yourself, I have direct  links to all of the them on my CTMH website, listed below the video.

Supply List
Valentines Treat Bags 
Love Ya Silly Stamp Set 
EZ Dots Adhesive Runner 
Barn Red Exclusive Ink Pad 
Hollyhock Exclusive Ink Pad 
Outdoor Denim Exclusive Ink Pad 
Thistle Exclusive Ink Pad 

Are you doing any special crafts for Valentines Day? Let me know in the comments below.



Close to My Heart Albums!

Have you been using cheap photo albums that now look dirty, and old, with page protectors that are splitting? After you have gone to all of the work to make beautiful layouts,  preserving all of your memories, don't you want to protect them for years to come? Not only do CTMH albums hold up really well, the covers are easily wiped clean.

Close to My Heart has some of the best quality albums you will find, and come in both post-bound and D-ring styles. The D-ring is my favorite for ease of use, and is also a better choice for pocket scrapbooking, such as Picture my Life, and Project Life. The reason I recommend the D-ring for pocket scrapbooking is the pages are able to lie flat better than in a post-bound. However, the post-bound can be expanded.

The best part of Close to My Heart albums? They are on sale for the entire month of February! This month only you can buy one album at regular price, and receive a second album for half price. That is a savings of over $17!

Take a look at the albums, and how you can purchase a few for yourself on my Close to My Heart website.

Watch this CTMH video to see the albums in action. If you still have questions, or comments, please leave them in the comments section. I always love to hear from you all.


Blog design by Rainy Day