Monday, April 29, 2013

Clutter Confessions (& a new way to organize washi tape)

One of the great things about cleaning out your clutter zones is discovering things you didn't remember you had - and finding new uses for them!  As I mentioned last week, I am in full spring cleaning mode and this weekend I finally tackled the two, very scary, storage rooms in our basement.  These are the unfinished rooms in the underground area of the basement.  My crafting areas are in the walkout section.

I have a bad tendency to put things in the storage rooms and forget about them.  When we returned from living overseas for eight years there were a lot of "miscellaneous" boxes that were delivered from our US storage.  After a few quick peeks when we were unpacking, I figured if we hadn't missed whatever was in them for eight years, we probably could get along without those items.  It's embarrassing to admit that there are still a few of these boxes lurking in the dark corners.  I am working my way toward them...

This plastic (faux crystal) cracker tray was one of my "finds" while clearing out one area full of miscellaneous serving pieces.  I am not sure when I got this - it might have been from my husband's grandmother.  I realized that it looked like just the right size and shape to hold some of my rolls of washi tape.

Washi tape is versatile, pretty and inexpensive and it is easy to quickly acquire a large collection.  While is seems like this tape is everywhere now, a few years ago you could only find it from a few online sources or in a specialty shop.  Back in 2010, I found it in Japan Town in San Francisco and wrote about it HERE.

The cracker tray is just the right size for most of my rolls of washi tape.  These are the rolls of the mt tape brand which was developed by the Kamoi Kakoshi company which has been making industrial masking tape from washi paper since 1923.  You can read some interesting history about the company and the development of the decorative tape HERE.   When I checked to see if you could buy this tape on Amazon I found 933 results for mt washi tape.  Many other companies are now offering washi tape - if the rolls are about 2 inches in diameter they will fit perfectly in the cracker tray.

I could fit 13 rolls of tape in the cracker tray (a lucky baker's dozen!).  This leaves a bit of room to make them easier to lift out of the tray.

I like crystal but it isn't the most practical thing for a craftroom.  It is surprising to see how realistic the plastic tray looks.  It adds a bit of elegance to the table!  If you are a washi tape maniac and have hundreds of rolls of tape, you could just set out the ones you are using for your current project in a tray like this. may be wondering where you would find such a tray if you don't happen to have a storage room crammed full of surprises.  You might find this sort of thing in a church rummage sale or a garage sale.  I think they are fairly common serving pieces.  If you really like the way this looks and functions - I found an online source for a cracker tray that appears to be the exact same design.

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Party Plastic Plus has a huge variety of serving items and their products are made in the USA.  You can click HERE to go to the page with this tray.  The price is $1.99 if you order less than 24 (how much washi tape do you have?).  The shipping for just one or two trays might be prohibitive but if you ordered with a friend or two you could reduce the shipping cost per item.  (I have never ordered from this company - I just found it through a search online).  You could also try a local party store or dollar store to see if these trays are available.

While we are on the subject of washi tape here are a couple of resources for you.  One is the fabulous blog post by Melstampz with a roundup of over 100 washi tape related blog posts - lots of reading and ideas.

Monica Bradford's Washi Tape Wahoo! webinar replay is another great source of washi tape information and inspirationYou can find out more about the class and purchase it HERE.

In just a couple of days it will be May.  I am looking forward to the  LOAD 513 (Layout a Day) challenge.  It will be great to get back to making some scrapbook pages.  It will be amazing to have 31 pages done by the end of the month!  The group may be full by now but if you were thinking about joining, you can click HERE to go to the registration page - you may still be able to join the fun.

Do you have any spaces that need de-cluttering?  I highly recommend it as a way to get ready to move forward with new projects.  Once you clear out some of the old and useless (to you) things in your space you will have room for new things to enter your life and inspire you. 

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Friday, April 26, 2013

Mother's Day Specials


I hope you have had a nice week.  For the past couple of days I have been caught up in some projects that needed doing around our house including some pretty vigorous spring cleaning!  We finally have some nice warm weather here and I find that good weather is always inspiring.

Did you have a chance to visit all of the sites participating in the Made for Mom with Love celebration?  The range of ideas and items offered is really remarkable.

I am sharing the file for this special Mother's Day card as my gift to you - see the original post HERE for the download links. 

If you didn't get a chance to see everything yet, here is a list of all the sites that are participating.  (There are 18 in total so you may want to split the list to visit them all over a few days).

Lain at Layout A Day

Debbie at Scrap Me Quick Designs
Monica at Scrap Inspired

Melissa at Digital Scrapbooking HQ

Pam at Keeping Life Creative

Diane at Capadia Designs (you are here!)

Beth at Scrapping Wonders

Kelli at Use it Scrapbooking

Jen at Jen Wright Designs

Suzy at SuzyQ Scraps

Alice at Scrapbook Wonderland

GeeZee at Messtaken Identity 
Cara at  Cara Miller  

Rebecca at Pictures to Scrapbook

Heather at No Excuses Scrapbooking

Dawn at Faithfully Yours

Kristie at Artful Adventures

Vi at Creative Threadz

The freebies and special offers in the Made for Mom with Love celebration are all good until Mother's Day, May 13th.

Mother's Day offers and sales are showing up at many sites and there will be bargains to be found online and in your local shops.  Here are a few that may be of interest...

Midnight Madness at (and new Cuttlebug folders)

image from has promoted a special midnight madness sale which will take place tonight at 10 p.m. and lasting until 2 a.m. (Mountain Time).  I don't know what the offers will be so I'll have to stay up late to check them out! There are a couple of cartridges I would like to have - if the price is right...

image from

There were some lovely new Cuttlebug folders announced yesterday for Hello Thursday - you can see them HERE (click on "New Folders" on the left side of the page). My favorite is this set of four "Contemporary Nature" folders.

50% off Sale at Silhouette Online Store

image from Silhouette Online Store

There is a 50% off sale going on right now in the Silhouette Online store.  This is a great time to stock up on files and if you have a subscription your money will go twice as far as usual.  This sale will last until May 2, 2013 (at 11:59 Pacific Daylight Time).  There are over 35,000 shapes in the store so give yourself plenty of time to browse!

During the sale, there is a free shape every day instead of just one that lasts all week so be sure to check in each day to download the file.  The triangle flags above are today's free shape.

Silhouette America announced that in the Silhouette Online store they are getting close to download number 50 million.  If you happen to be the lucky person who downloads number 50,000,000 you will win $1800 in credit to the Silhouette Online store - now that's a lot of downloads!  Good luck to you - it sure would take a while to spend that much at 99 cents a file...

Clearance Sale on SVGs at Lettering Delights (extended to May 6th)

If you use a cutting machine and software program that accepts SVG format, Lettering Delights is offering some great deals on SVG filesThe sets are in SVG format only and will be leaving the Lettering Delights site.

All of the SVG format products at Lettering Delights are on sale for $1 a set.  This sale has been extended and will now end on May 6th - click HERE to shop the 188 individual sets that are available.

Remember, if you "purchase" the monthly freebie first (click HERE to see this month's freebies) you will received a code for 25% off your next purchase in your confirmation email - making this deal even more tempting.

Keep an eye on your email for more offers - it seems everyone wants to offer a special deal for Moms!

I'll be busy working on my house projects and finishing up a digital project to upload for printing today.  Maybe I can sit outside with my laptop to enjoy this weather while it lasts...  Do you have any special plans for the weekend?  I hope you have a great time, whatever you are doing.

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Made for Mom - with love


Happy Wednesday and welcome to the next stop on the Made for Mom Creativity Celebration.

If you aren't following the hop but just happened along here today, you can go to Lain Ehmann's site HERE to begin the full tour.  If you get lost, you will find the list of participating sites on Lain's site as well.  These special treats, freebies and offers are brought to you by a group of women who met through Lain's classes.  I hope you find lots of inspiration along the way.

You should be arriving here from Pam's site, Keeping Life Creative.  She has an adorable free "feltie" printable and a super discount on these inserts for a recipe binder that would make a great gift!

I have a special card for Mom to share with you today.  Designing for digital diecutting is one of my favorite things to do.  The following photos will take you through the steps for assembling the card.

Here are all of the pieces needed to make this card.  I cut them with my Silhouette Cameo using the Studio software but I am sharing files in various formats.  The letters and hearts are cut into the top layer of the card which makes it much quicker to assemble.

Points are cut from the white mat layer to allow the alligator texture pink shimmer cardstock to show through.

When the flower ring is added the secondary pattern of white scallops is highlighted.

The "Mom" topper is layered with the center circle and raised with foam dots.  Of course, I couldn't leave well enough alone...some bling was needed...

I chose pink pearls instead of the "diamond" gems to carry the shimmery pink theme.

The card base (11 x 5 1/2 inches) and the first dark pink layer (5 3/8 x 5 3/8 inches) are cut with a trimmer.

I chose to put the fold at the top of the card - I often do this for larger special occasion cards.

The shimmery pink cardstock is difficult to write or stamp on so I added an inside mat.

I used this Martha Stewart Punch around the Page set called "French Scroll."  If you can't find this set locally, you can find it on Amazon HERE.  The dimensions needed for the punch around the page to work properly (5 x 5 inches) were a perfect fit for the card.

The leftover hearts from the front medallion make a lovely accent on the inner mat.

You can download the file for this card with the following links.  Please be sure to double check the sizes and turn on the cut lines.  I have listed the sizes for all of the elements above.

Silhouette Studio File
Make the Cut File
SVG File
PDF File

I will be opening my new site which will include a shop with my designs very soon.   You can follow this blog, subscribe for email updates, or like the Capadia Designs Facebook page HERE to be sure to find out when the new website is up and running. 

Thanks for visiting today - your next stop is Beth's site, Scrapping Wonders.  If you take photos with an iPhone you won't want to miss her free class offer!

LOAD513 is just a week away - have you signed up?
The Layout a Day (LOAD) program that Lain Ehmann is offering begins May 1st and includes 31 daily videos, 31 daily prompts, and 31 sample layouts.  There is also an exclusive message board for LOAD members only where you can connect and chat with the several hundred other scrappers who have taken the challenge.  There will be prizes along the way and special recognition for everyone who completes the challenge. I have already signed up and I hope you will join in the fun and games.

Click HERE to go to the information page where you can see a video message from Lain and find out why so many people look forward to this challenge.  Can you imagine getting 31 pages done next month?  Sounds good to me!

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Monday, April 22, 2013

Coming soon...

On Wednesday I will be participating in a special event and I hope you will be able to join in the fun.  A group of creative women have put together some great inspiration for Mother's Day.  Starting early in the morning on April 24th, you'll be able to visit websites and blogs where you'll find freebies, coupons, special offers and lots of creativity to help you prepare for Mother's Day (some gift ideas will be included as well).

There is still time to sign up for LOAD513 - but there aren't many spaces left!  The Layout a Day (LOAD) program that Lain Ehmann is offering begins May 1st and includes 31 daily videos, 31 daily prompts, and 31 sample layouts.  There is also an exclusive message board for LOAD members only where you can connect and chat with the several hundred other scrappers who have taken the challenge.  There will be prizes along the way and special recognition for everyone who completes the challenge. I have already signed up and I hope you will join in the fun and games.

Click HERE to go to the information page where you can see a video message from Lain and find out why so many people look forward to this challenge.  Can you imagine getting 31 pages done next month?  Sounds good to me!

One more thing - don't forget to register for the free scrapinar all about envelope art.

Windy Robinson, Paper Crafts Magazine's Go-To Gal will be the featured guest on April 23rd (that's tomorrow).  Windy will show how to create gorgeous hand-crafted and hand-embellished envelopes and mail art.  The lucky recipients and even the mail carrier will be sure to smile at something this special arriving with the regular delivery.  You can find out all about the scrapinar and sign up HEREBe sure to sign up even if you have a conflict on the date - a replay will be available but only for a limited time and only for those who have registered ahead of time.

Last week was such a difficult week in Boston, the surrounding area and all across the country.  It was very hard to watch the scenes in Watertown - especially since we had been out to dinner the Friday before at a restaurant just a few blocks away.  Watching the events unfold on TV and seeing the police tape blocking off that area made it all seem even more terrifying.  I can't imagine how long it will take the residents to get past the memories of that night and day.  It was such a relief when the arrest was made.  We are so grateful for the service of all of the members of the law enforcement agencies and the citizens who stepped forward to help. 

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Friday, April 19, 2013

The First Few Years - New Cartridge

image from

If you are a Cricut Gypsy owner,you may not have read all the way through my post yesterday describing how to use the Silhouette Studio software for the butterfly birthday card I made.  I want to make sure that you know that you should have a $20 credit in your account at  The credit is supposed to be for digital images and cartridges only but I have read a few reports of people using it for physical products like mats.  You need to use the credit quickly - it expires on May 17, 2013. may be wondering how to spend your credit - I have a suggestion for you.

The First Few Years is a new cartridge that is a bit different from the usual cartridges.  This cartridge takes all of the work out of using a sketch by cutting all of the pieces for 50 different page layouts.

image from

The layouts are appropriate for an album for the early childhood years but you could change out some of the images and titles and use the basic layout for other topics as well.

image from

image from

As you can see from these two screen shots, there are images that are definitely child related as well as a second group of more generic images.

image from

There are also some great photo mats, frames and borders.

image from

The phrases are in various fonts and have a shadow layer.  They are definitely aimed at early years topics.

image from

Here is a look at the layouts you can make.  If you have a pile of early childhood photos and want to spend a weekend getting "caught up" (do we ever really get caught up?!) I think it would be very relaxing to sit and make these pages.

image from

image from

The handbook gives the size you need for each element to make the layout as shown - of course you can change things around if you would like to.  There is also a nice curvy font with welded and shadowed titles of the months of the year and more.

You can get a closer look at the cartridge by clicking HERE to go to the information page for the cartridge on  The digital cartridge is on sale for 20% off ($39.99) so, if you use your $20 credit you can get it for less than half of the regular price - not bad for a brand new cartridge.  You can find the link to the full handbook on that page.

I already spent my $20 credit but I am thinking of getting this cartridge as well with some additional credit I still have sitting in my account...

Do you like the idea of working with a cartridge that has outlined all of the choices you need to make for your page?  Do you like working with sketches?   

I hope you have some great plans for the weekend!

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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Butterfly Card Topper with Silhouette Studio

In order to make the wings of this butterfly "fly" above the card I made a few changes to the original free image in my Silhouette Studio software.

This butterfly image is one of the 50 designs that came with my Silhouette SD.  I checked to see where you could find it in the store and discovered that it is still free as an individual shape.  You can see it in the lower right corner of the screen shot below.

There are hundreds of butterfly designs available in the online store.  You can just search for butterfly and choose one that you like if you'd prefer a different image.  Be sure to choose one with lacy wings and a solid body to make it easier to adapt for a card like the one I made.

You may also be able to find a group of additional free designs in the Silhouette Online Store by searching "original 50" in the search box.  When I tried this last night I found 29 free designs listed. 

Once you have placed the butterfly on the mat you need to remove the center or the body section to create the inset effect on your card front.  Choose the knife tool and cut from the top to the bottom of the wing.

To use this method, be sure that "solid" is selected in the knife panel on the right of the screen.  The steps will be different if you use "outline" and when I get a chance to make a video I will show in more detail how the outline option would work.

After the knife makes the cut you will have two complete wings and a body, as shown on the left side in the screen shot above.  On the right you can see how the knife works if you choose outline - the wing is left with an open side and the body will need some repair.

After you make the two knife cuts the image will look like this.

I selected all three sections and filled them with red so you can see the shapes more clearly in this screen shot.  The butterfly body can now be moved off the mat while you work with the wings.

The wing shape that remains would cut completely from the paper so you need to edit the shape to remove the new straight edge by the body.  (If you choose outline when you cut the wings will have not have the side line but you will have to repair the body). 

To edit the shape, double click on the wing to enter the point editing mode.  Then select the dot at the top of the new side line, right click and choose "break path" - the dot will turn red.

After you have broken the path at the top and bottom the wing will still look the same.  You need to right click and choose "release compound path" to allow the side line to move away from the wing shape.

Once you have edited both sides of the wings and separated the center lines, move them away from the image and delete the lines.

When you chose "release compound path," all of the shapes inside the wings became individual images.  Drag your mouse over all of the shapes to select them all, right click and choose "make compound path" to get them back into a single image.

Click on the scissors icon at the top right of the page (next to the "A") to check the cut lines.  Then you can resize the butterfly to suit your project.

To make the card topper, draw a rectangle 5 inches tall and 3.75 inches wide.  Resize the butterfly to fit nicely in this space - I turned my image 45 degrees to the left.  To make it easier to move the card topper around on the mat select both the rectangle and the butterfly, right click and choose "create compound path."

Once you have finalized your design, you can easily cut six of these toppers from a 12 x 12 sheet of cardstock.

This post is getting long so tomorrow I'll explain how to turn any font into a stencil font that can cut into a topper and retain the centers of the of the letters like "o" and "p."

The body of the butterfly might need a little smoothing through point editing if your knife line was not even.  Then just place it on another area of the mat to cut from contrasting cardstock.

A couple of important notes about Cricut Gypsy linking to the Cricut Craftroom

1.  If you are are a registered Gypsy owner, you should have received an email about this update.  All Gypsy owners were given a $20 credit to spend on digital images only.  Sometimes the emails don't make it so I wanted to make sure you realized you had a little "mad money" to try out the digital selections.  I chose "Life's a Party" as a digital cartridge - it was $19.99 so it was free to me on Tuesday night.  Wednesday a new sale was announced so you can get digital cartridges (the "everyday" category) for 20% off making it only $15.99 this week.  I was a little too quick!

The credit expires on May 17th so don't forget to check and spend it as soon as you can.

2.  I haven't updated my Gypsy and linked it - I am not sure if I will since I rarely use the Craftroom and I don't mind plugging in a cart that is linked to the Gypsy.  I have seen reports that when people complete the linking procedure, the five free cartridges that many customers received in a promotion are no longer linked (Tags, Bags, Boxes and More, Blackletter, Christmas, Indie Art, Printing Press) and the Smiley Card cartridge that was another promotional cart on the Gypsy has also disappeared.  If these are important to you, I'd suggest waiting a little longer until there is a fix for this problem.

My voice isn't back to normal yet - but I do plan to start making videos again.  I hope you could follow this explanation easily - let me know if you have any questions.

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