Sweet Shoppe Designs

Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous’ Category

Organizing Photos and Albums

Today we are going to talk about another aspect of organization—organizing your photos!! I have never been good with keeping things organized. I do it for a little bit, and then I get lazy. I notice that when I let my photo organization get away from me, my scrapping suffers. If I can’t easily find a photo to scrap, then I get stuck in the rut of using the same pictures over and over because they are what I can find!! Today we’re going to look at a few ways to organize your photos so you’re never left wondering where those awesome photos are hiding!!

Here is the breakdown of how I organize my photos: I have a master folder for each year. Inside the yearly folder, I have a folder for each month. This is such a simple way to organize. If I have a pretty good idea of the kind of photo I’m looking for, then I just go to that particular folder and search for that photo. The only thing that I find lacking in this particular method is that if there are months that you take lots of photos, finding that one perfect photo can definitely be a challenge, Especially if you’re like me and don’t weed out the duds (photo is out of focus, someone is blinking, etc)!! Sugarbabe Rebecca also organizes by Year > Month > Date, and then she adds key words of the pictures in that folder.

SugarBabe Lydia is one of my organizing gurus!! She also organizes photos by date but tags her photos with keywords. She even uses tags like “silly,” “fun,” or “siblings.” When she is looking for photos to use with specific kits, she can just search for that tag and she has a great array of photos to choose from!!  She also tags her photos with “2012 to Scrap” and “2013 to Scrap.” She has smart folders that pull in photos with those tags. After she scraps the photo, she can remove the tag and the photo is automatically removed from the folder!!

SugarBabe Kim does most of her photo organizing in AcDSee. Here is her folder structure. To Scrap > 2012 > 0325 party grandma. When she clicks her folders, she can see all of the photos she has tagged for that category. From there she is easily able to search for a template or kit to go with her photos.

For those of us with YEARS of photos to scrap, designer Julie has a WONDERFUL idea!! When you are overwhelmed with which photos you want to scrap because there are just so many to choose from, create a folder and put a maximum of 10 unscrapped photos for each year in the folder. That’s not to say that your other photos aren’t as important, but if you could choose just 10 memories for a specific year, you wouldn’t have to be so overwhelmed with getting every memory scrapped. When you have just 10 photos in that folder, you can be on the lookout for specific kits to go with your chosen photos. I am in love with this idea!! There are so many times I want to catch up on certain years, but I don’t because I’m never sure which photos to scrap! Sadly, I end up not scrapping any from those years because it can be so overwhelming!!

Do you print your photos? Before I started digital scrapbooking, I spent SO much money on printing photos. I only print the photos that I frame around the house. While considering Project 365, I found a website that has a really awesome idea. With Shuttercal, you can upload your daily photos and journaling. At the end of the month, they print and ship your photos to you and at the end of the year you have a cute little box full of photos. If you don’t do Project 365, you can still implement that sort of idea. Buy some cute storage containers and print your very favorite photos!!

Really, there is no right or wrong way to organize photos. Everyone has their personal preferences. Hopefully, you were able to pick up a few tips and tricks to implement into your photo organization.

Are You Ready for Some Spring Cleaning . . . and a Bonus Challenge?

Lydia introduces our April Blog Theme . . . and a bonus challenge

It’s finally spring here in my part of the world. We are enjoying the sunshine, warmer weather, and afternoons at the park. Ahhh . . . I love it!

This time of year always makes me want to do some deep cleaning and get my house in order. I think I’m pretty normal in that regard. There’s just something about spring that makes you want to freshen up all areas of your life. I even got a good start on my spring cleaning by clearing out my closet last weekend. It felt so good to get rid of some old things that I don’t need anymore. And, every time I’ve walked into my neat, clean closet this week . . . well, it just feels good. :)

We’d love it if everyone in our wonderful community could have that same good feeling . . . free of clutter and feeling organized. So, this month on the Sweet Shoppe blog, our focus is going to be on organization and spring cleaning. You’ll find posts about organizing your scrap supplies and fonts, organizing your time, recycling and repurposing, and so much more, including plenty of layout and product inspiration. Be sure to take an occasional break from your own organization and cleaning projects this month to see what the Sweet Shoppe staff has in store for you here on the blog.

To kick things off, take a look at our image board below and then read on to learn how you can earn a bonus point for your April Challenge Portfolio.

Blog Bonus Challenge: Earn 1 bonus point for your April Portfolio by using the image above as inspiration for a layout of your own. You can use anything from the image . . . the grid design, the colors, or something about one of the individual images . . . as your inspiration. Then, upload your layout to the Pinterest Portfolio Challenge Gallery and list it as a Blog Bonus Challenge in your tracker post.

Thanks for stopping by, and have a fantastic day!

Tutorial Roundup: March 2013

Nikki highlights all the amazing tutorials that have been added to the site this month

Once again this month the Tutorial Team has been hard at work adding some fabulous tutorials to the blog. Check them out!

Creating a Template for those Mini Albums!

Do you love mini albums? If so, Rebecca has an awesome step by step tutorial on how to use your photo editing software to get your albums completed.

How to Partially Color a B&W Photo

Kim has an easy tutorial up on how to do selective coloring on black and white photos.

Noted-Make Your Own Notepads

Do you obsessively hoard notepads the way I do? Did you know there’s a cute and easy way to make your own? Keely has an awesome tutorial showing you just how to do that very thing!

Scrap Like A Sugarbabe: Tronesia Derrico

Tronesia is one of my very favorite scrappers! I love her style! Check out her Scrap Like a Sugarbabe post and find out how she goes about creating her amazing pages!

Playing with Text in an Art Journal Layout

Art Journaling is very popular right now and Lex has a fun tutorial on how she likes to play with fonts and text on her pages.

These new tutorials are just the newest added to our amazing Tutorial Blog so if you haven’t checked it out before be sure to!

Get Connected: Follow the SSD Designers!

Rebecca provides us with a handy reference for keeping up-to-date with all the Sweet Shoppe designers

Don’t miss another new release, freebie, or sale from your favorite Sweet Shoppe Designers . . . get connected! :) To ensure you are following everyone, this post is a handy reference of all the different ways to connect with the Sweet Shoppe designers . . . Facebook, Twitter, newsletters, etc! Also, did you know that our very own Darcy Baldwin put together a Facebook List of the Sweet Shoppe Designers? Love that girl! And, if you would like to follow the Sweet Shoppe SugarBabes, check out the Sweet Shoppe Staff page!

Designs by Cindy Schneider

Darcy Baldwin {Fontography}
Erica Zane
Heather Roselli Designs
Jady Day Studio
Janet Philips
Jennifer Barrette Designs
Juliana Kneipp Designs
Julie Billingsley Designs
Kristin Cronin-Barrow Designs
Scrap Happiness Inside by Krystal Hartley
Libby Pritchett Designs

Lliella Designs

My Digital Art Studio (Mari Koegelenberg)

Wild Dandelion Designs by Meghan Mullens

Melissa Bennett Designs

Misty Cato Designs
Nettio Designs


The Journey: Where Are You Going?

Nikki offers a few suggestions for moving forward in your Scrapbooking Journey this year.

When I first began Digital Scrapbooking way back in it’s early days circa late 2004, my goals were simple. Create a scrapbook to document my son’s first year. As my love for digi grew, my goals changed. It was slowly becoming my favorite hobby, my creative outlet, and a way to connect online to other people who shared my feelings and interests.

It took me a few years to nail down my own personal style. I experimented and followed the trends, and like most of you, I look back at my early pages and can’t imagine what I was thinking. But those pages are part of my journey, and they brought me finally to where I am now. I’m comfortable with my style. I’m a traditionalist, and although I love to get grungy and artsy sometimes, mostly I love to mimic paper pages as closely as I can. The best compliment I can get is when someone can’t tell if my layouts are digital or paper.

So as 2013 begins, I find myself setting different types of goals for my personal scrapbooking, and I think no matter where you are on your own journey–whether you’re just starting out or have been scrapping for years–you can benefit from a few of these ideas.


By this I don’t mean to simplify your layouts. If you love layering and clustering, then keep piling it on. What I mean by simplify is to think of all the projects and ideas you’ve seen or thought “I need to do that” and determine which are the MOST important to you. For example, I would love to do Project Life, but the past few months my scrapping time has had a huge dent placed in it and I don’t have nearly the time to commit to a big project like that as I used to. So I decided to continue with p365 the way I’ve always done it, and I’m happy with that. The point is to get the memories saved.

Work on a Technique

Shadows need some work? Photos looking blah and need some tweaking? Choose one thing you really want to improve with your scrapping and work on it. (Our Tutorial Blog could be a great place to start!)


I always feel like the photos make the page. Now I’m all about scrapping ALL those photos, and lately I scrap photos I take with my phone as much as I do my 7D. But no matter what camera you’re using, you can always improve, right? Work on it. Figure out what works best with your camera and practice until your photos are just popping off the page.


I know sometimes there just isn’t much to say on a particular layout, but try challenging yourself this year to journal more on your pages. I myself used to be much better at this than I am now, and I’m definitely going to try and get back to that this year.

Sometimes we all get caught up in the current trends and the enormous amount of amazing products out there that we get away from the real reason we all love Scrapbooking.

This layout was one I did many years ago. Obviously the shadows are not so great, the photo is slightly overexposed and kind of blah, and the design really needs some work.

And here is a recent one from me. Over the years I’ve worked really hard on my shadows and especially my photographs. They still aren’t perfect, but they’re much improved from when I started out.

Sometimes we all get caught up in the current trends and the enormous amount of amazing products out there that we get away from the real reason we all love Scrapbooking. Maybe this day is a good day to step back and reassess what you’re doing and where you want to go with it.

Where Are You In Your Scrapbooking Journey?

Laura reminds us to take a step back and evaluate where we are in your scrapbooking journey and how we got here.

As much as I hate to conform to any sort of trend or fad, we are all influenced by these trends somehow. This year, in July, marks my 8th year of digital scrapbooking. In those eight years so much has changed with my scrapbooking, but aside from a few minor changes, I think I’ve finally settled into a groove that makes all of my pages uniform in some way.

Whether you have just begun scrapbooking or you are well into that journey, there is always something to learn and definitely many things to step back and reflect on.  

One thing that has remained as I look back on my pages is that the focus is on the journaling. It could be a lot or it could be a little, but the emphasis of the page is definitely in the journaling.

For example, one of the very early layouts I did told a story to my daughter:

Flash forward six years to a page I just posted in the gallery this weekend:

The style of my page has most definitely changed (and thank goodness so have the shadows and element placement). But, even though I’ve added just a small snippet of journaling, that is definitely what I want my daughter to get out of the page.

There are many, many options available to digital scrapbookers nowadays. If you’re looking for a long term project to unify your layouts, that is definitely available. Some of these options are:

  • Project Life
  • Project 52
  • Project Love Me
  • By The Numbers Album
  • Alphabet Album

The possibilities are endless. But, if you are looking for something to unify your pages, these are always great options.

If you’re more into scrapping with current trends, some options that seem to be popping up now are:

  • Art Journaling
  • Shape Use (i.e., hexagons)
  • Washi Tape
  • Banners
  • Hybrid Projects

Where are you in your scrapbooking journey? Is that portrayed in your layouts? Is it where you thought you would be at this stage in the game?

I believe Ernest Hemmingway said it best, “It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”

While you may not feel that your early pages are “works of art,” in the end, no one else is going to feel that way. So I ask you, what is your one cohesive element that has stayed with you? Are you a big event scrapper or an everyday scrapper? Is this where you thought your scrapbooking journey would take you?


Scrapping Your Journey

Darla shares some of her favorite products for scrapping your goals 

Before the new year started, I was already thinking of what my goal would be for 2013 – what would I do to change the way I lived my life now and start a new journey? While I was at a party with friends, I sat and watched everyone having so much fun and I thought to myself how much I was enjoying myself. It was then that I realized how hard I push myself to be a perfectionist and how often this way of life did not leave me much time to relax. I realized then that I wanted to enjoy life more, and the only way I could do this would be to relax a little more and not let the stress that life can throw at me run my journey in life. Excited to create a layout to inspire me daily, I turned to our wonderful store looking for products that would be perfect to scrap my goals for 2013. And, here is what I found that I wanted to share with you:

1. In With The New kit by Traci Reed and Gina Miller – This is a wonderful kit filled with warm beautiful colors to help you scrap your goals for the year! The kit includes elements that help you scrap your “one little word” or encouragement to start your year’s journey. As a bonus for all you Project Life scrappers, there are journal cards included that you could use for all the PL pages you create in 2013.

2. Resolutions: LOVE by Jenn Barrette – This is another kit that beautifully helps you create pages about your new year’s resolutions or goals. What I love about this kit in particular is the encouraging word strips to remind you to cherish yourself as you scrap your goals!

3. I Can. by Shawna Clingerman – How can you go wrong with a kit that motivates you to keep your goals for 2013? The colors are so fun and bright in this kit, which help lend to that positive motivation to scrap your new goals.

4. New Year: New Me by Jenn Barrette – This is a fun and whimsical kit from Jenn Barrette that you can also use to scrap your goals. My favorite parts of this kit are the cute little alphas and encouraging word elements to help you scrap your pages about the New You for 2013!

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”

Sometimes you need a little help to get started on creating that page about your new goals, and here are a few that I found in our shop:

5. FAVE-O-RITES Vol 1 by Nettio Designs -Lynnette has a whole series of templates that encourage you to scrap your favorites, and this particular template set allows the flexibility to create a list of your goals quickly!

6. Cindy’s Layered Templates – Listmakers 1 by Cindy Schneider – Cindy has these perfect templates that let you create a list of all your goals or resolutions for the new year.

7. The Best Of The Year by Studio Basic – While this particular template set is centered around highlighting your past year, I loved the possibilities and flexibility of this set to help you create quirky and fun pages about your goals for the new year.

8. Celebrate LIFE by Janet Phillips – This is a really fun set of templates by Janet Phillips that helps you not only scrap pages about your initial goals but allows you to use them to create monthly pages to show how your journey is going throughout the year!

9. 10,080 Minutes Frame Stamps by Traci Reed – These stamp frames are a fun way to quickly add a bit of flair to your photos about your journey throughout the year!

10. It’s Goal-tastic by Nettio Designs – Well how can you not love these templates from Lynnette that help you create a page about that one word that will motivate you on your journey? I loved them so much that I created my own page with the templates highlighting the word that I hope will help me find much joy and love in 2013!

There are still many more products in our store that would help you create your goal pages, but these were my favorites that I hope you can find inspiring enough to create your own journey page or pages! Happy Scrapping!

Finding Focus On Your Scrapbooking Journey

Lynnette reminds us to evaluate WHY we scrapbook and where we want our scrapbooking journey to take us.

The start of the new year is always an exciting time as scrapbooker. A fresh year of memories lie ahead waiting to be captured. New projects like Project Life or photo-a-day and yearly layout goals are ready to be started.

But with all the excitement of new year goal-setting and projects, it’s easy to get caught up in the goals and numbers and lose sight of why you are on this scrapbooking journey in the first place. Which is why I like to start off every year with a bit of a scrapbooking “why” audit.

Rather than focus on what specific projects I want to tackle this year, I like to take a moment, look over the past year and remember why I scrapbook. What is it about this hobby that I love and where do I want my scrapbooking journey to go from here?

My Scrapbooking Journey

This January marks seven years since I first discovered digital scrapbooking. In some ways it feels like a lifetime ago and yet, at the same time, it feels like only yesterday when I happened upon that special digital issue of Simple Scrapbooks magazine in 2006.

Looking back through my albums, I can safely say that my style for both design and storytelling has evolved a lot in that time. And yet, when I stop to think about it, my reasons for why I capture my story in the first place have largely remained the same.

My reasons for scrapbooking have been on my mind a lot since my grandmother passed away over the summer. My grandma was a scrapbooker in the truest sense of the word. Her albums are full of photos, handwritten notes, and bits & pieces of her life spanning almost 70 years. Looking through them is like having her there sitting with you. You can hear her voice, her occasionally self-deprecating humor, and the love she had for her family. They are truly a little piece of her left behind for future generations.

That’s what I want with my own albums.

Being a digital scrapbooker, my process for scrapbooking is obviously a bit different than hers. But at the heart, our reasons for storytelling are not that far apart.

I scrapbook because I’m passionate about capturing my life adventures in a creative way. When someone pages through my albums, I want them to feel like there’s a little piece of me in those albums. And if I’m lucky enough one day to be a 94 year-old grandma with grandkids asking what I was like in my 20s or 30s, I think it’ll be pretty cool to have all these stories captured.

Find Your Scrapbooking Why

With the start of the new year, before you let yourself get caught up in new projects & goal setting, take a minute asking yourself WHY you scrapbook. Why are you on this scrapbooking journey? And, where do you want this scrapbooking journey to take you this next year?

Then use your reasons for why as a filter for determining how you spend your scrapbooking time and what goals and projects you want to tackle in 2013.

If you’re unsure of where to start when determining your why for scrapbooking, here are a few questions you can ask yourself:

Know Your Audience: Who is your audience? Who are you scrapbooking for? Is it for yourself, your family, future generations, or a combination of them all? When you know who you’re scrapbooking for, it becomes easier to know what types of stories and moments to capture.

Look Back: Look back through your completed layouts and projects. What stories do you love the most? What layouts do you love? Are there any stories you wish you’d told differently?

Look Ahead: Imagine your albums in two, five, or 10 years – what stories do you want to have captured? When you think of your parents or grandparents, what stories do you wish you knew about them?

Focus on the now: What stories are most important in your life right now? What stories are you most excited to tell right now?

Why are you on this scrapbooking journey? And, where do you want this scrapbooking journey to take you?

Remember there are no right or wrong answers to these questions, so be honest with yourself about what’s truly most important to you. Your reasons for scrapbooking are yours and yours alone and the more clear you can be the easier it becomes to know you’re spending your limited time in the right place.

Aristotle said it best when he said, “The whole is greater than the sum of it’s parts.” The individual pages and stories you capture today are just a small blip in your larger scrapbooking journey. Your style and storytelling methods will evolve, but the WHY behind your storytelling will always be the constant that holds everything together. Start the new year off focused on WHY you scrapbook and you’re sure to be on the right path all year long.

Get ready for Sweet Shoppe 2013!

Hey hey Sweeties!

Just a quick note today to let you know that we’re taking a little break from the daily blog posts in December.  We’ve got some exciting stuff in the works for 2013 including an all-new blog format which you won’t want to miss.  We’ll still be posting our Featured Designers and Saturday Newsletters this month, so we won’t totally be going away.  We’re just taking the month of December to plan and prepare so that we can give you the very best in 2013.

Wishing all of you the merriest of holiday seasons this year!

Christmas Wishlists

It’s that time of year again! Letters to Santa are going out all over the world from very excited boys and girls and it is no less the case at our house this year. My son Avery is now at an age where he takes this very seriously and has written and edited his letter to Santa about 15 times. I finally got him to finalize it and so he knows now there will be no more additions. Ella, my (almost) 4 year old, hasn’t totally figured it out yet but she does have a good idea of what she hopes is under the tree Christmas Morning.

Here are a few things my kiddos are asking for this year:

The toy both of my kids have requested the most are these little critters. Apparently they were popular back in the 90′s? They look a lot like Gremlins to this 80′s kid. At any rate the commercial on repeat a zillion times over the past few months has convinced my boy and girl that they HAVE to have them.

Avery is hoping for Legos of course and he also wants the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Action Figures. Who knew these would be such a hot toy this year because I almost never found them. I can remember TMNT being really popular when I was in high school and my baby brother loved them. It’s cool to see them coming back again.

And Ella has asked for 2 things specifically. A dollhouse and “dat baby doll dat walks”. So this will be waiting for her under the tree Christmas morning:

I also like to scrap the kids wish lists every year and this year Cindy has a fabulous template in the store that is perfect!

Christmas Single 1 by Cindy Schneider

And here’s how I used it to scrap Avery’s Wish List also using A Merry December by Jady Day Studio and Meghan Mullens and Dear Mr. Claus Font by Darcy Baldwin


Merry Christmas Everyone!