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

Reasons I Love You Bag

Giving a handmade gift really makes someone feel special.  But when you add the personal touch of journaling, that handmade gift feels even more special. I used some Captured Journaling Cards to write down reasons why I love my sweetheart and placed them in this decorative bag I made with the Gift Bag Punch Board.

We R_reasons bag full_aly dosdall

First I punched and scored an 8×12″ piece of kraft cardstock according to the directions on the Gift Bag Punch Board for making a large bag.

We R_reasons bag 1

Then I cut off 1 1/2″ from the top of the bag, leaving the back of the bag at full height. I used the scoring tool and a guideline on the punch board to score the back of the bag to create a flap closure. Then I punched the corners of the flap with the Scallop/Cloud Corner Chomper, glued the bag together, and added a strip of sticky-back velcro to hold the flapped closed.

We R_reasons bag 2

After journaling on my cards, I embellished the front of the bag with Washi Tape, Baker’s Twine, and a Crazy For You Embossed Sticker and Mini Badge.

We R_reasons bag close_aly dosdall

I love that this gift not only represents the time and effort I spent to make it, but it also includes my heartfelt handwritten thoughts, feelings, and expressions of love. Another fun idea is to write acts of service or kindness you will do for your recipient that they can pull out of the bag and ask for anytime–kind of like service coupons.



Gift Bag Punch Board
Corner Chomper–Scallop/Cloud
Captured Journaling Cards
Washi Tape–Onyx, Plum, Sea Foam
Baker’s Twine–Purple
Crazy For You–embossed stickers and mini badge

Calendar Cinch Books

There are so many fun projects you can create with The Cinch binding tool.  One of my favorite projects to make with it is a calendar.  They make great gifts, and are super handy to keep around for yourself as well.  Here’s a fun DIY birthday calendar project with a video tutorial below.

WRMK_birthday calendar1_aly dosdall

I trimmed a piece of 8×8 chipboard in half to create the covers, and I printed the inside pages using the free printable calendar pages you can download HERE.

WRMK_birthday calendar2_aly dosdall

To learn how to make this calendar using a few of our awesome tools, watch the video below:

Here’s another great Cinch calendar idea: at the CHA trade show in Anaheim this month we released some new Cinch Kits, one of which is a 12×12 Calendar Kit. This kit includes bare chipboard covers, blank calendar pages, binding wire, and fun stickers to help you fill in your calendar pages.

Calendar Kit

Use your creativity and your favorite We R paper collections to alter this calendar.  It makes a great gift!

cinch calendar

Watch for the Cinch Kits to start shipping in April.



The Cinch
8×8 Chipboard
Gold Binding Wire–.75″
Wire Clipper
Corner Chomper–1/8″ & 3/8″
Pennants Shape Dies
Notable Paper Pack
Washi Tape

Kids Craft: Hot Cocoa in a Bag

Combat the cabin fever at your house this winter with a fun and tasty hot cocoa kids craft.  My kids love to enjoy a warm cup of cocoa when they get home from school on cold winter days, so my daughter and I prepared some ready-to-go kits for them to add to a cup of warm milk or water.

WRMK_hot cocoa kids craft1_aly

We filled each clear treat bag with a packet of hot cocoa, and a handful of chocolate chips and mini marshmallows.  Then we stapled the bag shut and added a simple topper labeling the contents.

WRMK_hot cocoa kids craft2_aly

To create the toppers we punched the corners of 4×6 Memo Cardstock Cards with the Scallop/Cloud Corner Chomper, folded the cards in half, and stapled them to the treat bags.  We then cut out some printed labels from the Cardstock Cards with the label die from the Drink Sleeve Template Die set and adhered them to the toppers.

WRMK_hot cocoa kids craft3_aly

Next we cut out some snowflakes from the Cardstock Cards with the Snowflake Punches Die and added them as well. We finished off the toppers with Washi Tape, Baker’s Twine, and some bling. This craft is perfect for kids–my daughter and I had a blast making these.  You could also use these for playdates, winter class parties, or kids’ nights.



Snowflake Punches Die
Drink Sleeve Template Die
Corner Chomper–Scallop/Cloud
Memo Cardstock Cards
Washi Tape–Aqua
Baker’s Twine–Aqua

Albums Made Easy Cards

Need an idea for how to use your leftover journaling cards when your Albums Made Easy scrapbook is finished? Or maybe you’d just like some tips for quick and easy card-making? Then check out the cards I made below using some Chalkboard Albums Made Easy Journaling and Die Cut Cards. These cards took me minutes to create, and I used up some scraps and leftover journaling cards in the process.

To create these I cut two 4.25 x 5.5 inch cards that open on the right. I covered the fronts with some chalkboard paper. Then I trimmed a 2 x 5.5 inch strip of patterned paper for each card, and layered a journaling card and die cut card on top. I love the extra visual interest that the die cut cards add!  I finished off the cards with some washi tape, baker’s twine, and brads for accents.

I really like the softness that rounded corners add, so I punched the corners on the cards and patterned paper strips using the 3/8 & 1/8 inch Corner Chomper to match my journaling and die cut cards. Designer tip: if you’re looking to match the rounded corners on your AME cards, the 3/8 ” side of this Corner Chomper is what you need.



Chalkboard Albums Made Easy Journaling Cards

Chalkboard Paper Pack

1/8 & 3/8 inch Corner Chomper

Washi Tape–Coral

Baker’s Twine–Aqua

Brads–Yellow, Aqua

Gift Ideas: Holiday Tag Set

Handmade holiday tags make great gifts because not only are they creative and fun, but they’re super useful as well.  I created the tag set below using the Lifestyle Crafts Letterpress tool, and I love the professional quality of the beautiful letterpress images.

To save time I used Mini Flat White paper–the perfect size for tags.  After running the paper through the letterpress twice–once for each color–with the Wintertide Printing Plates, I combined a few of my favorite We R Memory Keepers tools with the letterpress tool to add some details.

I used the Scallop/Cloud Corner Chomper to create decorative corners, the Raindrop 2 Edge Punch to add a border along the bottom, and the Crop-A-Dile to add Eyelets and Baker’s Twine for tying.

These tags are easy to mass produce making the perfect gift for your crafty friends, or anyone else on your gift list this holiday season.


Supplies used:

L Letterpress

Wintertide Printing Plates

Mini Flat White Paper

Corner Chomper-Scallop/Cloud

2 Edge Punch-Raindrop


Green Eyelets

Green Baker’s Twine

Aly Dosdall

Halloween Pocket Invitation

If you’re planning a spooky get-together this time of year and need an idea for a fun invitation, consider including an interactive element.  As fun as it is to receive an invite to a party, it’s even more fun when it requires a little interaction on your part, don’t you think?

I created this interactive pocket invitation for my daughter’s Halloween party using the Lifestyle Crafts Mini Pocket Template Die.

To create your own pocket invitation, cut a 4×6 inch background from textured cardstock and round the corners with the 1/2 inch Corner Chomper.

Trim a 3 5/8 x 5 5/8 inch piece of Bewitched patterned paper, round the corners, and layer it on top of the cardstock background.

Add some vertical and horizontal banners and strips of patterned paper, then cut a pocket using the Mini Pocket Die and Evolution.  Fold and glue the tabs to the back of the pocket, and add it to the card. Designer tip: adhering the pocket with foam squares adds nice dimension to the card and makes the interactive pocket stand out.

Trim a journaling card to fit the pocket, print or hand write your party details on the journaling card and add it to the pocket.

Finish off the card by embellishing it with some baker’s twine and embossed stickers.

Other ideas for using the Mini Pocket die are hidden journaling on a scrapbook page, storage for memorabilia on a scrapbook page, and a gift card holder–the die is the perfect size for a gift card!


Supplies used:

Mini Pocket Template Die

Evolution and Genius Platform

Bewitched Paper Pack and Journaling Cards

Corner Chomper (1/4 and 1/2 inch)

Baker’s Twine

Aly Dosdall


Easy Halloween Tags

I love combining my favorite tools in creative ways to come up with unique and fun designs.  And I love tools that make my crafting go more quickly so I can make the most of my limited crafting time.  Watch the video below to see how I combined the 3×4 Card Punch with various Corner Chomper tools to make these quick and easy Halloween tags.


We R Supplies used:

3×4 Card Punch

Corner Chomper Tools

Bewitched Paper Pack

Baker’s Twine

Shimmer Eyelets–Wide

Washi Tape

Aly Dosdall