Take Ten…Again!

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A while ago, I posted about my love/hate relationship with Take Ten Kits. Since that post things have changed. Purchase of the kit club is no longer a subscription but a “first come first serve” basis. From what I have read, there were a lot of mixed reactions with many “subscribers” concerned they would be left in the dark and miss getting a kit. Since I’m no longer a subscriber, I don’t know if there were any problems with the change and I have not seen any posts stating there were. Another change I noticed is the cost of international shipping. It has increased from $7 to $8 a month. So a $10 kit now costs Canadian “subscribers” $18 not including the exchange rate. So disappointing!! 🙁

Always one to look for a deal, a couple of months ago I was able to take advantage of a sale at Take Ten Kits. I bought the November 2014 kit and the Plan Today stamp set for $10. 🙂 The $7 shipping was still too high for my liking but hey…I basically got a stamp set for free!! I’ll be keeping my eye out for more deals and hopefully be able to get all the kits…fingers crossed! 🙂

November 2014 Kit & Plan Today Stamp Take Ten Kits/Studio 29 Designs

November 2014 Kit & Plan Today Stamp Take Ten Kits/Studio 29 Designs

Until next time…

Drug Store Prints…Yay or Nay?!

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I’ve been seeing lots of conversation on Facebook about the quality of “drug store” photo prints vs professional prints. From what I’m reading, most of the complaints are about certain companies. So, it made me wonder…where are the best places to get awesome photos without breaking the bank? Are there any tricks and tips professional photographers use? Hmmmm…

I should first say that I believe results are based on location and on user experience. My full time job is with a large Canadian retailer and at my store location I work in the photo department…so I have a little experience. I am by no means a professional…this post is based on my opinion and experiences, nothing more! 🙂

Since I’ve admitted I’m not an expert, if you came here hoping to see what a real, live professional photographer has to say about the subject check out this post. It’s really well written and gives a ton of insight into some things I would never know…or even think to look for!

Ok! So…here goes! There are a few things I see happen on a regular basis in the photo department at my day job. As a customer, please understand that when you get photos printed at a “drug store” you will more-than-likely not end up with professional quality prints. Customers must also understand that employees are not miracle workers. We can not make that guy in the background disappear or turn your 60 year old 4×6 black and white photo into a color 11×17 without loosing the details. As well, the employee and the photo equipment are not able to read minds. Just because you THINK you would like a 2×2 print, if the smallest photo the equipment can produce is 4×6 and you choose 4×6…you will get a 4×6. This is not the employees fault and does not mean the equipment is “crap”. ALWAYS remember, photo employees are people too! Ok…rant over!! 🙂

There are a couple of tips I’d like to mention. First…depending on the settings of your camera, photos may look great on the computer but they, in fact, may not be true 4×6, 5×7, etc. Always check to be sure photos are not being cropped at the photo kiosk. The process is different for each type of kiosk however, always click on the “edit” button. It’s here that you can see any cropping that may occur. Second…NEVER choose “color correct”. This will ensure your photos stay as close to the original as possible. Third…talk to your “drug store” photo employee about what you may need or expect. Depending on the system, employees are able to make some changes to photos. Other changes MUST be made directly at the kiosk. Don’t be afraid to ask questions…they are there to help!

Until next time…happy printing!! 🙂

Handwritten Calendar Months

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It seems like forever since I’ve had a day to do nothing but catch up on my ever growing “to do” list! Well, ladies and gentlemen, it appears today was finally the day to do just that and it worked out fabulously! No emergencies to tend to, no pile of dishes screaming my name, no laundry staring at me from across the room…actually there is but my darling fiance has promised to take care of it this weekend. 🙂

Last week I posted my free blank monthly calendar printable. You can see that post here. This week I’ve designed some handwritten calendar months. I printed them on heavy 110lb white card stock and cut them using my Silhouette. Having them on white will allow me to try different techniques and decorate or embellish depending on my mood and co-ordinate with the calendar I want to use for that month. Yay!!

Months - handwritten and cut out.

Months – handwritten and cut out.

So, for those of you who love these handwritten months as much as I do, the digital files are available for purchase in my store for only 99¢. And if you don’t have a cutting machine? I haven’t forgotten you! You can also purchase the cutouts printed on that heavy 100lb white card stock for $1.99.

Handwritten months

Handwritten months

Buy the digital file here
Buy the physical product here

I can’t wait to get my creative juices flowing with these! Hope you enjoy them and, as always, please leave a comment with a link showing how you’ve used them. I’d love to see your work!!

Until next time…

Here’s to the New Year!!

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Happy New Year!! I know, I know…I’m almost a week late but hey, better late then never right?!

I mentioned in a previous post that I had decided to give Project Life a try. So…I gathered some supplies at the beginning of 2014. Album? Check. Page protectors? Check. Core kit? Check. Number of pages done? None. Yup…none! Last year was the worst for me and while I have 90% of my photos printed and in a neat little pile, I just couldn’t find the time/inspiration to put it all together. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it! 🙂

For 2015, I decided on a different approach…more of a journal/about me album. My life is pretty boring, to be honest, so I also scaled down my album to a 6 x 8. The big plan is to do a monthly layout with a calendar highlighting the important events in my life.

With a plan in place, I went on the hunt for a blank monthly calendar that I could decorate and had spaces big enough to write in. Free is always good but I have no problem paying for things I absolutely love. I found an amazing free blank calendar on the Heidi Swapp site but there was a problem. (Isn’t there always a problem when you really want something?!) The problem…I found lots of links to the download but the download itself was nowhere to be found. Since I couldn’t find anything that met my criteria and caught my eye, what is a girl to do? Design my own, of course! So…here it is! Free for personal use! Yay!! Just click on the image to download. Easy peasy!! 🙂

Free Blank Monthly Calendar - Personal Use Only

Free Blank Monthly Calendar – Personal Use Only

I hope you enjoy! Please leave a comment with a link if you use any of these calendars. I’d love to see your work!

Until next time…