Mini Fall Canvas

Fall officially begins next week and I can’t wait! There are so many thing I love about the fall–pumpkin patches, corn mazes, cool weather, fall leaves, hot cocoa, and of course fall crafting! Since fall is so wonderful I thought it would be fun to spend this week sharing some fall project ideas. I’ll start things off with a bitty piece of fall decor perfect for your mantle or other decorative shelf in your home.

Mini Fall Canvas by Aly Dosdall

I grabbed a 4×4 inch canvas and mini wooden easel from my local craft store and spray painted the easel chocolate brown. Then I grabbed a scrap of burlap, a wooden button, some We R embellishments, and some of my favorite papers from the Indian Summer collection (which is perfect for fall projects by the way).

Mini Fall Canvas by Aly Dosdall_close 1

First off I wrapped a strip of Hazelnut Washi Tape around the bottom of the canvas. Then I glued a small piece of burlap along the left side. I love the texture and dimension that the burlap adds to fall projects. Then I die cut some fall leaves from my Indian Summer 6×6 Paper Pad using the Maple Leaves Nesting Dies, and layered them with some additional papers and die cut stickers. I added some Baker’s Twine, a button, and some Indian Summer Chipboard Alpha Stickers. I love the texture of the faux leather alphas!

Mini Fall Canvas by Aly Dosdall_close 2

With the small canvas all the layers and textures create a nice and cozy fall feel! Be sure to check back tomorrow for another fall project.



Indian Summer 6×6 Paper Pad
Indian Summer Chipboard Alphabet Stickers
Baker’s Twine–Brown
Enamel Shapes–Neutral
Maple Leaves Nesting Dies
Ticket Punch Dies

Storing School Art Projects

If you’d like to store some of your child’s school artwork in a scrapbook, consider using photo sleeves as a quick and easy solution. We R offers so many different sizes and configurations of photo sleeves your sure to find something that works for you.

storing school art projects by aly dosdall 1

After my daughter and I selected a few of her favorite art projects I mounted them on some fun patterned paper from the It Factor collection, cut them apart to fit into my photo sleeves, and then inserted the segments into the sleeves.

storing school art projects by aly dosdall 2

I chose to use two photo sleeves with 6″x12″ sections to hold the larger pieces. Even though part of the artwork is divided, the eye still views it as a whole piece. Plus I think it adds some additional visual interest with divided sections.

storing school art projects by aly dosdall 3

I finished off the layout by adding a die cut title and a strip of washi tape. You could create a traditional 12″x12″ page with photos of additional artwork and place that next to this two page layout in your album.

storing school art projects by aly dosdall 4

For additional ideas for storing your child’s school work in your scrapbook albums, check out THIS POST about our Keepsake Pockets.

How do you store and organize your child’s school papers and projects? Be sure to share your tips in the comment section below!



Photo Sleeves
It Factor 12×12 Paper Pad
It Factor 6×6 Paper Pad
Washi Tape–Sea Foam

DIY Pocketed Organizer

This week I’ve shared ideas for displaying and documenting your child’s school papers and artwork. Today I’d like to share an idea for storing and organizing those papers. You can create this DIY Pocketed Organizer with some basic office supplies and your favorite We R papers, embellishments and tools.

Pocket School Organizer by Aly Dosdall

First I gathered some basic supplies to create the organizer–9″x12″ document envelopes, 12″x12″ chipboard, and It Factor patterned papers. Then I trimmed the chipboard down to 9 1/2″ x 12″ and covered it with patterned paper.

photo 3

Next I trimmed off the tops of the envelopes, and then cut an 8″ semi-circle out of the front of each one. To do this, I inserted my cutting mat inside the envelope, and then used my Magnetic Circle Cutter to cut a half-circle. This allows me to see the work and makes it easier to access if I want to remove it from the envelope.

photo 2

Then I cut some 9″x12″ pieces of It Factor patterned paper, placed some adhesive on the back, and inserted them into the pockets to provide more stability and a pop of color.

photo 4

I embellished my organizer with Washi Tape, It Factor Journaling Cards, It Factor Wood Stickers, and It Factor Alpha Block Stickers. Finally, I added some tabs to each pocket using the File Tab Punch and Tab Stickers.

Pocket School Organizer by Aly Dosdall 2

Each pocket is decorated with a similar design and similar products. That makes it quick and easy to assemble the notebook. I bound my Pocket School Organizer with my Cinch tool and Spiral Binding. Here are the inside pockets. I divided them according to the work that my daughter brings home from preschool (painting, worksheets, writing, art projects, and doodles).

Pocket School Organizer by Aly Dosdall 3

Pocket School Organizer by Aly Dosdall_collage

You could create a pocketed organizer like this one for any papers you’d like to keep organized–bills, mail, documents, etc. You could make a smaller one for receipts or coupons as well.



It Factor Paper Pad
It Factor Alpha Block Stickers
It Factor Wood Stickers
It Factor Journaling Cards
Washi Tape–Onyx, Butter, Sea Foam
The Cinch
12″x12″ Chipboard
Spiral Binding–1″ Clover
File Tab Punch
Tab Stickers
Magnetic Circle Cutter and Mat

Scrapbooking School Papers

As I mentioned yesterday in my post about our school work display wall, after leaving the kids’ school papers and artwork on display for a time we swap them out for new ones and then I photograph the old ones before tossing them. I always keep a sample of my kids’ work from each school year that I store and organize separately, but most of them end up preserved in a photo on a scrapbook page that I make for each child each school year.

preschool projects by aly dosdall

I printed the photos of my daughter’s school papers about 2″ x 2″ so that I could fit several on a page. Then I cut out the centers of some polaroid frames from the Notable patterned paper and backed the frames with photos of my daughter’s school papers.

preschool projects by aly dosdall_close 2

Grid-style designs are perfect for groups of similar photos like school papers, so I created a grid design in the upper 2/3 of my page and then added patterned paper borders on the top and bottom to anchor the page.

preschool projects by aly dosdall_close 1

I added a title cluster and embellished some of the photo frames with patterned paper, washi tape, die cuts, and enamel shapes.

This is a great solution for all of the papers that my kids bring home. We still have them preserved on a scrapbook page, but as small photos instead of large bulky school papers.


Notable Paper Pack
Washi Tape–Butter
Albums Made Easy Dies–Arrows, Icons
Pocket Scrap Dies–Life
Enamel Shapes–Neutral, Cool, Warm

School Work Display Wall

Heading back to school can be such an exciting and fun time with shopping for supplies and new clothes, and meeting new friends and teachers. But it also can be a time for refocusing on organization with all the school papers and art work that come home. This simple display wall is a perfect way to keep all those papers organized that also allows your child/grandchild to feel the pride of displaying their work.

School Work Display Wall by Aly Dosdall

First I selected a long wall in our basement in the family room where the kids hang out often (not many windows down there, thus the funky lighting in the photos). Then I picked up a 1″ x 4″ wood beam from my local hardware store that fit the length of the wall where I wanted to install it. I gathered some wooden clothes pins and glued them to the beam with carpenter’s glue about 18″ apart. Then my dear hubby painted the whole thing using the same paint we used for our trim. Once the whole thing dried, he screwed the beam into the wall and then spackled and painted over the flathead screws.

School Work Display Wall by Aly Dosdall 2

Now it was my turn to take a crack at it and get creative! I covered the clothespins with some of my favorite Washi Tape colors–the smaller rolls fit perfectly over them. I also added some coordinating Enamel Shapes at the top for a little more visual interest.

School Work Display Wall by Aly Dosdall_close

Our kids love to come home and hang up their favorite school assignments and artwork, and we all love to see them on display! Once they’ve been hanging up for a while and the kids are ready to replace them, I take a photo of them and then we say goodbye and toss them in the trash. Of course, each school year I keep three or four samples of their work in an accordion file folder so they’ll have something to look back on from their school years. 

How do you like to organize school papers and artwork?



Washi Tape–Coral, Sea Foam, Butter
Enamel Shapes–Warm, Cool



50th Birthday Card

Yesterday I introduced you to It Factor, our latest paper release. I shared a layout about my daughters and used some of the more youthful patterns and images in the collection. Today I’m sharing a more mature project–a 50th birthday card made with some of the more traditional patterns and colors in the collection.

50th Birthday Card by Aly Dosdall

For this card I used the It Factor 6×6 Paper Pad and some of the Journaling Cards–one die cut card, and one title card. I also die cut a small banner to add to the celebratory feel of the card using one of the Pennants Shape Dies. The It Factor Wood Stickers add some dimension and complete the card sentiment. 

50th Birthday Card by Aly Dosdall_close

I created the jumbo postage stamp border along the edge of the yellow paper by punching semi-circles with my Thumb Notch Punch at regular intervals. I used the edge of the punch as my guide to keep the spacing between the semi-circles even.

thumb notch punch border

So, what do you think of the new It Factor Collection? What type of projects would you use it for?



It Factor 6×6 Paper Pad
It Factor AME Journaling Cards
It Factor Wood Stickers
Enamel Shapes–Neutral
Pennants Shape Dies
Thumb Notch Punch


It Factor Layout

I’m so excited to introduce you to our new collection, It Factor. This collection is chalk full of fun icons, colors, textures and new embellishments. It’s a great collection for girls, celebrations, and teens, though many of the papers are versatile enough for just about any layout. I used it to create a page about my oldest daughters getting new glasses for the school year.

New Specs by Aly Dosdall

Some of the papers have darling icons that are easy to cut out for instant custom embellishments. My design was somewhat inspired by the “B” side of the Teal Trunk paper with it’s patterned circles. So, I used my Circle Cutter to cut out different size circles to include on my page.

it factor_cut paper

I love the new embellishments for this collection! The clear acrylic stickers are fabulous and I definitely wanted to include them on my page, but I wanted them to stand out a bit more so I colored them with a coloring tool and permanent ink.

it factor_altered acrylic 1

I also used some of the new wood stickers. I love how well they mix with the other textures and patterns in the collection. I included some Enamel Shapes in my embellishment clusters as well.

it factor_altered acrylic close

Finally, how fun are the new plastic Alpha Block Stickers? You can use the negative or the positive shapes, or combine them like I did for my page title.

it factor_plastic alphas

I love the new It Factor collection! Mixing acrylic, wood, plastic, and enamel on this page makes for a pretty cool look I think. Be sure to come back tomorrow to see another It Factor project.



It Factor 12×12 Paper Pad
It Factor Alpha Block Stickers
It Factor Acrylic Shapes
It Factor Wood Stickers
Enamel Shapes–Neutral
Metallic Washi Tape–Silver
Magnetic Circle Cutter
2 Edge Punch–Loop

Hexagon Wall Art

I love the look of handmade quilts, but I don’t have the time or the skills to make them.  My paper craft hobby takes up most of my free time these days! So, I decided to use my paper craft skills and tools to create the same look in a home decor piece. Take a look at my paper quilted hexagon wall art.

Hexagon Wall Art by Aly Dosdall

To get a quilted look I used the 2″ hexagon die from the Hexagon Nesting Dies set and cut several hexagons from various Indian Summer patterned papers. I selected a couple of multi-color papers, and then some semi-solid papers to balance them. After placing some of the hexagons I decided to use a lighter brown than my original choice–that seemed to fit better with the look I was going for. I adhered all of the die cut hexagons to a piece of poster board that I cut to fit inside my frame.

place hexagons

To keep the design engaging I avoided a repeated pattern and placed the colors so that there is a good sense of balance in the project. Since my frame is a light color, I placed mostly colored papers along the edges of the piece for good contrast.

Hexagon Wall Art by Aly Dosdall_close

This project was fairly quick and easy, but I love the results! You could create a similar project with any size or color frame, and with other shapes such as squares or rectangles. Handmade quilts are great inspiration for design ideas. Give “paper quilting” a try on your next home decor project.



Indian Summer Paper Pack
Hexagon Nesting Dies

One Sketch, Two Ways

I love sketches! They’re so helpful when creating a project. They save time and effort by removing the guess work from the design process. Plus it’s always fun to see how many different interpretations come from the same sketch. So I decided to design a sketch and then create two projects from it, and share a few tips for altering sketches to fit your needs.

Indian Summer Card and Tag by Aly Dosdall

Here’s the sketch I created. It’s for a vertically oriented project (ie a card or tag) and contains some fun layering. I left some things open for interpretation since I prefer my sketches to allow for creative freedom and not be restricting in any way.

aly dosdall sketch

First I created a gift tag based on the sketch using the Indian Summer Paper Pack. The die cut AME 3×4 banner card at the top of the tag takes the place of the die cut heart overlay in the sketch. The sentiment on my tag is split by the border and a few enamel dots. The remainder of the tag basically follows the sketch. The tag dimensions are 3×6 inches.

Indian Summer Tag by Aly Dosdall

Next I created a birthday card based on the sketch using the Indian Summer Paper Pack again, but this time I focused on some different colors and papers in the collection. I also rotated the sketch 180 degrees, so the die cut overlay is in the bottom section of the card instead of the top (I cut out some of the arrows and triangles from the patterned paper with my craft knife to get a die cut look). The sentiment and banner flags are in the top left section of the card instead of the bottom right like the sketch shows. This card is 4×6 inches.

Indian Summer Cared by Aly Dosdall

Here are a few tips for using sketches:

  • Rotate the sketch on its side either way or completely upside-down
  • Flip the sketch horizontally or vertically
  • Swap out paper/embellishments for photos or visa versa
  • Swap around the placement of basic elements like photos, journaling, and the page title
  • If you need more photos than the sketch shows, divide a larger one into smaller ones
  • If you need less photos than the sketch shows, combine smaller ones into one larger one
  • Replace a single photo with a photo collage
  • To make a two page layout from a single page sketch, duplicate the original and then rotate or flip it to create the second page
  • To create a single page from a double page sketch, choose one of the two pages that best meets your needs and save the other for another project
  • To alter the size of your sketch (ie an 8 1/2×11 from a 12×12, or an 8×8 from a 12×12) reduce the size of the photos by 1 to 1 1/2 inches in height and width, and remove any elements that make the page feel crowded–less is more with smaller sizes

I hope these sketch tips are helpful for you and save you some time when creating projects. How about you–do you like to use sketches when creating projects? If you create a project using the sketch above, but sure to post a link in the comments section below.



Indian Summer Paper Pack
Indian Summer Chipboard Alphas
Indian Summer Journaling Cards
Enamel Shapes–Cool
Sew Easy Baker’s Twine–Aqua
Corner Chomper–1/8″ & 3/8″
Art Knife

Hello Banner

Do you ever just feel like making something fun to dress up a room even though there’s nothing in particular to celebrate? Well, I did. And here’s what I made–an all-occasion “Hello” banner!

Hello Banner by Aly Dosdall

Since this piece of home decor isn’t tied to a holiday or party of any kind, I picked one of my favorite generic collections–Farmers Market–and focused on the cheery primary colors. I started by cutting out some large pennants using the Pennant Nesting Dies. The die creates two slits for threading twine through to hang the pennants, but I wanted to fold the pennants in half to make them more sturdy. So I folded my 6″x12″ pieces of patterned paper in half, and then placed them on the die so that the fold was just below the top of the pennant die. That way when I die cut them the fold remained intact. 

Hello Banner_cut pennants

To cover the slits I added two strips of Washi Tape at the top of the pennants. I added some chipboard alphas to spell “Hello”, and then I embellished the pennants using some flowers that I made with my Flower Punch Board, some die cut frames, and Enamel Dots. To keep my flowers flat so I could easily add them to this project I didn’t cut off the last petal before assembling them.

Hello Banner by Aly Dosdall 2

It was easy to hang my banner by placing some adhesive in the folds of the pennants and then adding a length of baker’s twine in the crease of the pennants.

Hello Banner by Aly Dosdall 3

Then I hung my garland in my family room for us all to enjoy! It’s pretty details like this that make me smile when I walk into a room. What home decor projects have you created recently?



Farmers Market Paper Pack
Pennant Nesting Dies
Nesting Frames Dies
Flower Punch Board
Enamel Dots
Sew Easy Baker’s Twine
Washi Tape–Multi Color Pack