Tutorial Tuesday (Photoshop Elements)

First Past the Post(mark)

I unpacked the January Challenge Reward collab Snail Mail earlier today and was thrilled to see some postmarks included in the elements. They’re from this month’s featured designer, Neverland Scraps. A few years ago I made my own postmark that had my hometown and birth date on it for a layout I was doing. Postmarks can be nice additions to a variety of different layouts, but what if the ones in this kit don’t exactly work for you? Let me show you how to make your own.

I started by choosing a dark gray colour to work with. The ink used for postmarks in the old days when letters were hand-canceled (I worked for the post office back then) was more of a blue-black than a true black, and it often looked more gray than anything else, as the ink pad aged.

I opened a 12×12 canvas on my workspace so I could have lots of room to manoeuver. Then I pulled out a large circle using the Elliptical Marquee tool with the Tool Option on Fixed Ratio 1:1.

Then I applied a 20 pixel stroke to the inside of my circle.


So here’s where I confess that I changed my technique part way through the screenshots. When getting ready to put your text onto your postmark, choose Text on Selection, the one with the marching ants around the T, and as you can see, I used Orator Std Medium for my sans-serif text. For a refresher on text manipulation see Playing with Text.

The key here is to make sure you get the little tilde shape with your I-beam text cursor ~ when you click on your selected path. To create text that curves up, the cursor line should be mostly on the outside of your circle. Then type out the name of the city/town/village you want your postmark to come from. Don’t worry about where it’s placed on your circle because you’re going to move it and manipulate it anyway,

To move it into place and to make it fit into the circle, you’ll need to resize and rotate. I used the grid to help me position it in the right spot and line it up right.

To get the province/state/country curving downward along the bottom of your postmark, click your tilde/I-beam so that the cursor shows longer on the inside of the circle. Then type out your text.

Then resize, rotate and position it so it’s following the curve at the bottom of the circle.

Here’s a closer look at the grid so you can see how the tops, bottoms or sides of the first and last letters line up.

Then it’s simple to put the date in the centre, just using the regular text tool.

I used the Move Tool Options to align the date both top-to-bottom and side-to-side.

Let’s play with the postmark a bit more. I added a stroke to the circle layer because it looks a little flimsy. I chose another 20 pixel stroke, but I put it Outside.

There, it has a lot more presence! It’s on the same layer as the text in my example.

If I turn the circle layer off, now the postmark has a double outline!

As I mentioned above, I worked for Canada Post for a number of years before I went into nursing. The ink we used to hand-cancel letters and parcels often left a bit of a raised edge, so I’m going to show you how to add a Bevel Style to your postmark to add to the realism.

My example uses a Simple Inner bevel. The image below is before it’s applied.

And after… It looks slightly embossed and gently curved. Now you can shrink your postmark down to something approaching a real one and all that detail will be intact.

To save your postmark to use on your layouts, select Save As (CTRL/CMD>Shift>S), give it a name you’ll remember, then save it as a .png file to preserve the transparency of the background.

But wait!! Let’s say you wanted to have your postmark represent a historic date, like maybe July 4, 1776… then you’d want to use a more vintage font, such as Veteran Typewriter Regular. If you haven’t simplified your text layers, you can easily change your font by selecting the Type tool, double-clicking on the text on your postmark and selecting the new font. Remember, in version 15, you can let the software find the font you want by clicking on the selection bar then typing in a few letters from the font’s name, as I show below.

After I changed all three text layers, I have a nice vintage postmark too!

Now to build me a layout using Snail Mail!

Let’s Celebrate! | Valentine’s Day


It is that time of the year. You know what this blog post is going to be all about, don’t you? 🙂 February brings Valentine’s Day for us in the states. All things love, hearts, pink and red. So with that in mind, we are going to take the hard part of your digital scrapbooking shopping and bring you a ton of Valentine’s Day stuff all in one post. All images are linked to the store. Don’t forget, there is a section just for Valentine’s Day in the store. You can these items and more there.

Cannot mention Valentine’s Day digital scrapbooking supplies without mentioning this month’s Monthly Mix! This might be one of my most favorite Monthly Mixes to date; and I generally don’t lean towards all things lovely dovey when it comes to my digital scrapbooking supplies. I just love this one though!

GingerBread Ladies Monthly Mix: Date Night : A collaboration from our GingerScraps designers.

Date Night: This purple and pink filled kit will be perfect for any date night or special romantic occasion. It is full to the brim with hearts, champagne glasses, flowers and much much more. You’ll, no doubt, have an amazing time using this lovely kit to remember your romantic adventures for years to come.

This collab includes:

  • 1 Full Alpha
  • 44 Papers
  • 93 Elements

Here are some more great supplies from our GingerScraps’ designs to get your lovey dovey Valentine’s Day scrap on!

This wonderful Alphabet was made as part of my To Have & To Hold Collection. This collection is perfect for all your formal celebrations, like engagements, weddings and wedding anniversaries and much more!


Remember that fluttery feeling in your stomach when you had a CRUSH on that special person? This “Crush On You” Collection is perfect for scrapping those LOVE-ly memories!
This is the MAIN KIT. It contains 20 Papers and 58 Elements.


Beyond by Craft-tastrophic
Includes 12 textured papers and 40 elements
Personal use Only

[Read more…]

Fresh Baked: February 02, 2018

Monday is World Nutella Day. You know what? Monday, we need to all just hang out in front of our computers and tablets, working on some digiscrap layouts, eating Nutella straight from the jar! Who’s with me? I think the designers might! They have some wonderful new stuff coming out this week, and it’s all perfect for any memory you need to preserve!

Remember when you spend $10 in the store, you get a great new collab! It’s time to get out and do some winter sports!


[Read more…]

Sneak Peeks February 1st 2018

Happy Thursday! This week’s new releases are a bonus to the awesome Buffet collections that debuted today. Remember the Buffet products are 50% off until the 5th! Several designers have goodies releasing tomorrow as well! Let’s take a look!

From Craft-tastrophic

From Aimee Harrison

From Heartstrings Scrap Art

Have an awesome weekend!

Feel the Love at Gingerscraps!

Love! It’s all about love! Love of friends. Love of family. Love of digi-scrap! That’s what February is about! Time to spread the love and share in the memories!

It is the First of the month, and that means the revel of our new Buffet!!

Don’t forget to check out the Buffet Bundles, one easy click to add bundles of Buffet goodies to your cart, and an amazing value too!

[Read more…]

DD: Feb 01

The month of love is here and it’s shining brightly with this month’s daily download. I can’t wait to see layouts created with it.

Before I show it off, though, I have to share January’s Daily Download! It was all about facing the year without fear and making it your year!


NOTE: So glad you enjoyed the January kit! 
Also thank you for pointing out that the item mmd_fy_smudge1.png needed some improvement. 
Misty (MissMis Designs) got that item fixed and here is a link. 

And here’s the love-filled download for February!


Remember, the download is kept up for 5 days, and then it is taken down. If you miss pieces, the kit will be available for purchase on the first day of the following month.

Tutorial Tuesday (Photoshop Elements 15)

Fun with FONTS & FOTOS 

I don’t know about where YOU are, but where I am, winter is in full fury. We got nearly a foot of snow in the last few days, most of it falling at the same time I was on a 52-passenger bus on my way home from a meeting 200 miles from home. So I’ve been living vicariously through my daughter, who just returned from a week in Hawaii. She took some amazing photos!

Let’s play with another Guided Edit, from the Fun Edits tab. This one is called Photo Text.

The interface for this edit is quite simple and easy to follow. Click on the Text Tool button and choose a font. Pick something with some presence – a chunky one that will let all the awesomeness of your photo shine. I started with Konga Pro Regular. Don’t worry about the font colour, it’s not going to matter. You can play with the size to maximize the area of the photo your text covers.

And you can use more than one font, as the software shows in the sample on the menu screen. Don’t click to accept the changes until you’ve got all of your text done though. Move your cursor to where you want the new font to take over, use the font selection menu to choose the new one and type out your text. And don’t worry if your text doesn’t fit onto your photo perfectly either, because you can resize it later. The second font I chose for this example is called LD Zoot Suit, from Lettering Delights.

If your text lines overlap, once you’ve got the words you want, you can double-click on the text and adjust the leading – the gap between the lines – so that they’re just touching. Or, because it’s YOUR project, they don’t have to touch… it’s all up to you!

Once you’ve committed your text, the software automatically clips your photo to it. You can move the text around and resize it to reveal the areas of your photo that you want visible.

The image above has the “Fit” option selected, since it’s the default. Depending on your font and the width of the words you used, you might find the “Fill” option works well for you. I didn’t like it, so I undid it.

Then there’s the Background Color option. You can choose Black…


or Clear (transparent). Which one works will depend on what you plan to do with your text later.

I shifted my text around to show more of the sand and the sea, less of the sky. The clouds on the horizon weren’t defined enough for my taste.

Now for the fun part! There are some more options that change the appearance of your text in some very interesting ways. With one click you can add both a stroke and a bevel! There are three preset adjustments; this one is the Small version.

And the Medium. Looks a little like a marshmallow.

Large is even more puffy and defined. While I was playing around with this technique it occurred to me that this would be a way to make a super-simple alpha set to match a favourite kit, simply by typing out the alphabet to fill up a paper from that kit, then fiddling with the adjustments.

But wait!! There’s more tweaking we can do! By clicking on that Advanced button at the bottom of the interface, this menu opens up. Each aspect can be adjusted to suit the look you’re going for. You can change the angle of the light source, make the Bevel higher or flatter (and sharper), you can adjust the Drop Shadow, the width of the Stroke and even add an Inner or Outer Glow. It’s so much fun to experiment!

I decided a white Stroke would look better. Right?!

All that’s left is to decide what to do with your finished text. You can save it, share it or move it to the Expert editor to drop onto your layout. The power is in your hands!

With this Guided Edit you can do as much or as little as you like with your text. Of course, you COULD do it all the old-fashioned, multi-step way, but why?

Creative Style | Pocket Scrapbooking

Here we are already. The last week in January. Didn’t it just turn 2018? Before we know it we will be looking at the end of this year! It flies by faster and faster with each passing year. That being said, I am not here to complain about time flying. 🙂 I am here to talk about scrapbooking styles. You know: fantasy, pocket, traditional, and everything in between. Some people scrap only one style. Some people (like myself) will scrap one style one day and another a next. I like to mix things up.

One thing I’ve really not scrapped is those great pocket pages. I love to cluster a bit too much. Those pages are lovely though! So neat, clean, and brought together. The perfect touch of elements and patterned paper. So what is “pocket scrapbooking” actually?

When scrapping with paper, pocket scrapbooking usually used page protectors that can be divided into smaller pockets. These pockets are arraigned in many different ways on the page. In each pocket usually the things that are included are photos, cards, and journaling. Of course it isn’t limited to that either. Ticket stubs, hospital bracelets, receipts, and so are are great additions to the pockets. In digital scrapbooking we take basically the same approach. Some of the digital scrapbooking versions of pocket scrapbook layouts have photos and such tucked in actual (digital) pockets. Those are my favorite. Others are just wonderfully blocked layouts. Some with stitches around the blocks, and of course some without. Usually there is more focus on the memories, photos, and papers than lots of elements filling the pages.

These layouts jump out of the galleries! So, that is what I did. I stalked the gallery and am here to show of some of those great pocket scrapbook pages that are filling the GingerScraps gallery. We will round up today’s Creative Style post with some great items from GingerScrap’s store to create your own pocket layouts.

Here are those layouts I mentioned. All are linked to their counterparts in the gallery. If you are so inclined, run over there and give these guys some gallery love!

New Years 2018 by


Week 3 2018 by Firstoscartgrouch


New Wine Glasses by msbrad


Magic_March_2011 by ScrappyPenguin


Accident by gnana96


by minicooper452


PS_-_GS_1_18_Mix by jang


Punktering by hannaahl

Pocket scrapbooking is one of the most popular styles of scrapping digital out there! GingerScraps has an entire section dedicated just to all supplies for your digital pocket scrapbooking. I took a look-see at that section. Nearly 70 pages of goodies!! I picked out a few of my favorite to showcase here. Of course, this is just a small sample of what is in the store. If you already have these, or are looking for something else, make sure to check out that section!

My Scary Friends Doodle Stripes contains unique images to turn your projects even more wonderful.
Hand-drawn and colored at the highest quality by Paty Greif Design Studio. The files have a resolution of 300dpi for an optimum printing quality.

[Read more…]

January’s Designer Spotlight: Miss Mis Designs!

Whew… where did January go?? Between me being crazy busy and some gremlin activity with my laptop, Misty almost didn’t get her moment in the Spotlight, but there’s still a tiny bit of month left so let’s sit down with her and get to know her a little better.

J: How long have you been designing?

M: Ten years this month! [Congratulations!!]

J: What’s your design process?

M: I’m a full-time student, mom and manager, so my design process lately is sit down and make a day of it. Plan papers, elements and knock it out.

J: What do you use to create your designs?

M: I use PSCC some, but my  favorite is PSE 7. SEVEN, lol!

J: Describe your design workspace.

M: Right now my mom is living with us and taking my office space, so I’m currently at a small desk in the middle of the dining room. At least I have snacks when I design!

J: What motivates and inspires you as a designer?

M: It’s my creative outlet. I have a very mundane real life job; this allows me to be artsy and creative.

J: What kit currently available in your GingerScraps store is your favourite? Why?

M: My favorite is “My Tribe”. I feel like most people can relate to having that ‘tribe’ of people that help them in everyday life. Kids, work, LIFE!

[psst…. it’s on SALE!!]

J: Do you craft outside the digital world?

M: I crochet blankets. I can crochet and relax in front of the tv for maybe ten minutes a day. Everyone gets baby blankets for their new littles.

J: What is the last book you read?

M: I am currently reading Present Over Perfect. It’s sooo insightful.

J: Tea or coffee?

M: Coffee through the day but a hot cup of tea before bed. 

J: Do you have a guilty pleasure?

M: I like a good casino. Eek. I do like to go and splurge $40 or so and sometimes even win!

J: If time travel were possible, where would you go and why?

M: I would have to go to the future. I’m not much of a history person. There isn’t a specific time that intrigues me.

J:  What’s your favourite thing about GingerScraps?

M: The team and the community! There isn’t ever any bickering, or drama. We truly do have a fantastic group of people. 

J:  If you could have any super power, what would it be?

M: I would love to be able to be in more than one place at a time. Multiplicity. I am a mom, a full time Sales Manager, and full time student. I need more of me to get it all done. I’d have one more that is just sleeping all the time. 

Thanks for chatting with me, Misty!


Fresh Baked: January 26, 2018

Last newsletter for January. How is it already almost February? The designers have designed some gorgeous kits and templates! There’s a little something for everyone!

Remember when you spend $10 in the store, you get a great new collab!















Collection: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Collection-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Kit: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Page-Kit-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Alphas: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Alpha-Sets-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Borders: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Borders-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Templates: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Templates-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Date Tabs: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Date-Tabs-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Titles: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Word-Art-Titles-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Quotes: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Quotes-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Messy Edges: http://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Messy-Edges-by-Aimee-Harrison.html
Glitters: https://store.gingerscraps.net/360-Life-All-About-February-Glitters-by-Aimee-Harrison.html



Bundle: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Bundle-Collection-by-Connie-Prince.html
Kit: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Kit-by-Connie-Prince.html
Mixed Media: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Mixed-Media-by-Connie-Prince.html
Snippets: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Snippets-by-Connie-Prince.html
Messy Papers: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Messy-Papers-by-Connie-Prince.html
Border Clusters: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Border-Clusters-by-Connie-Prince.html
Templates: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-12×12-Template-Pack-CU-Ok-by-Connie-Prince.html
Extra Papers: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Extra-Papers-by-Connie-Prince.html
Alpha Add-On: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Alpha-Pack-AddOn-by-Connie-Prince.html
Word Art: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Word-Art-Pack-by-Connie-Prince.html
Quick Pages: https://store.gingerscraps.net/-2018-February-Quick-Pages-by-Connie-Prince.html





Collection: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Day-Collection-HSA.html
Page Kit: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Day-Page-Kit-HSA.html
Solids & Extra Papers: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Day-Solids-HSA.html
Templates: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Templates-HSA.html
Clusters & Masks: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-day-Clusters-Masks.html
Arty Edges: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Day-Arty-Edges.html
Word Art: https://store.gingerscraps.net/A-New-Day-Word-Art-HSA.html




Remember, if you complete 10 challenges, just ten, you get a free kit as well!!

Get ready to get yourself a pen pal for this kit!