Tag Archives | Graphic 45

National Scrapbook Day Giveaway – Win Graphic 45 Little Women!

[Disclosure: Some links below are links to Nally Studios advertisers or are affiliate links that pay a commission at no cost to the reader when a purchase is made after a click.]

Welcome to National Scrapbook Day on Craft Critique! I’ve got a great giveaway to celebrate with thanks to Graphic 45 – and a simple layout that I hope will get you inspired to scrapbook today!

Graphic 45 Little Women large

This new Graphic 45 collection celebrates the classic book “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott. Every young girl who reads the story sees herself in one of the four sisters whose lives share the book’s pages. (Of course, I’m a Jo!) This gorgeous celebration of reading and storytelling is perfect for scrapbooking any number of childhood moments.

I chose a photo of my daughter reading with her daddy to share with this collection. This is an old photo, over ten years old, part of a stash of forgotten enlargements I recently rediscovered while cleaning my mess, I mean studio.

Graphic 45 Little Women layout

Supplies Needed:

The diagonal color blocking is a dramatic look. But it worked great – the photo of my daughter stood out brilliantly against the blue background and then the darker side of the photo stands out on the yellow print. The yellow paper balances the yellow on the layout by sitting opposite the yellow on my daughter’s pajamas.

I did the same color balancing with the pink & green, pairing the two pink elements on opposing sides of the diagonal divide and giving them green accents. The flower die is a Graphic 45 Staple and the layers work together beautifully! I used three graduated shades of cardstock (lighter on the bottom) to create the flower and give the illusion of shading.

The quote card was the perfect choice because it included the word “storybook) and it pulled the blue background print over to the other side of the diagonal.

So, are you ready for the giveaway? One lucky reader is going to win a Graphic 45 Little Women collection pack!

How To Enter: All you have to do to have a chance to be the lucky winner is leave a comment on this entry before 11:59PM US eastern time on Wednesday night, May 9th, 2018. Make sure you include your email address in the line reserved for it on the comment form (for your own protection, don’t put it in the text of the comment, where it will be visible to the public – just in the line labeled “email” in the form where only Craft Critique staff can see it). We will need it to notify you if you are a winner. Winners will be drawn by random drawing from all eligible entries. One entry per person. Sorry, US delivery addresses only.

But that’s not all! We’re giving away a different Graphic 45 collection on each of our Nally Studios websites today to celebrate National Scrapbook Day! Don’t miss your chance to win them all! Visit the links below to enter the giveaways on our other websites!

Thanks for sharing your National Scrapbook Day with Craft Critique and Nally Studios!

Make A Travel Shadow Box with Graphic 45 Artisan Style!

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I’ve been doing a lot of travel this year for work that has taken me to new places. The result has been (virtual) stacks of photos that I really want to do something with to remember all of the exciting places that I have been. Albums are great, but sometimes it is nice to have the memories out where you can enjoy them everyday. I decided to make a home for some of my favorite San Francisco memories in a Graphic 45 shadow box!

Shadow Box Graphic 45 Artisan Style

As soon as I saw the recent Graphic 45 Artisan Style collection, I just knew it was perfect for my San Francisco photos. I had taken some Instagram photos I was especially proud of on the trip. The vintage filters and warm colors in the photos matched beautifully with the Artisan Style collection! 

Graphic 45 Artisan Style

The Graphic 45 Ivory Shadow Box is 10″ by 10″ in size, so the 12″ paper pad collection is plenty of paper for covering it.

I had my Instagrams printed at Persnickety Prints as press prints that came with white borders.

I wanted to build the shadow box around the photos, so I decided to start at the back (the photos’ background) and work out making my paper selections. I narrowed it down to two options for the background behind the photos: orange and cream.

The cream color definitely was tasteful and allowed the photos to dominate.

Shadowbox cream background

Ultimately, though, I settled on this orange text print paper. The warmth of it (versus the cool cream colored option) really played to the warm tones in the photos.

Shadowbox orange background

To keep it from getting too dark inside, I used the cream print for the side walls of the windows. The front is a brilliant floral that provides a touch of green that will coordinate with the pale green walls of my studio where it will be displayed. The fronts of the shelves were done in a black & white print. The smaller print worked better in that area than the large floral. The sides (on the outside) were done in a black text print.

Travel Shadow Box
Travel Shadow Box


Starting at the bottom left, let’s take a closer look at each window.

This window was designed to showcase the die cast cable car that I bought in a shop on the San Francisco waterfront after we had ridden the cable car. In fact, that die cast cable car was the entire inspiration for this shadow box. As soon as I saw it on the shelf, I knew that I had to buy so I could build a shadow box around it! The only other thing in this niche is the Instagram press print that I left the white border on.

Model Cable Car

In the upper left, I crammed two prints into the niche by layering them. Using the Graphic 45 metal clothespin to hold the small print separates it from the bottom print visually, and also gives the niche some dimension. I rubbed some FolkArt Acrylic paint in Vintage White into the word “timeless” on the clothespin to make it pop.

Metal Clothespin

The upper right niche contains the only “snapshot” that I included in the box. It’s important for a couple of reasons. It shows the Golden Gate Bridge in the background (this is the closest that we got), and it also records my travel partner Anna Rose. We were in the San Francisco area together to work at a Scrapbook Expo for Cricut – she’s one of Cricut’s fabulous in-house designers. Check out the library of “Make It Now” projects in Cricut Design Space to find her work!

Speaking of Cricut…I made the label for this niche on my Cricut Explore! It’s a label cut file with the “San Francisco” text added on top with a Cricut font in black pen. It was so quick and easy, and the perfect way to label the box’s location!

Cricut label

The final niche, on the lower right, contains my favorite picture that I took of a cable car. Because the photo took up so much of the area and I didn’t want to block it, the only embellishment is the small chipboard piece from the Graphic 45 Artisan Style collection. Because of the shape and position, it almost looks like a decorative thumbtack holding the photo in place.

Cable Car Photo

One of the reasons that this is my favorite photos is that there is an advertisement for the Ghirardelli’s factory on the side – but if you look real closely at the window above the ad, the iconic sign that is on the top of the factory building is reflected in the window! I wish I could claim that I did this on purpose, but it was a happy accident.

Photo Window Reflection

Looking closely at the bottom of the shadow box, some of the paint techniques I used are visible. All of the edges were dry brushed with the FolkArt Vintage White color to give them a distressed look (and hide the paper seams a bit). Less obvious is the paint work on the wooden feet. They were first painted with a black high gloss acrylic by Martha Stewart Crafts, and then (after it was dry) the FolkArt Vintage White was wiped on top of it with baby wipes to knock it back a bit so it wasn’t so glaring next to the black paper. A little of the Vintage White got stuck in the crevices of the wood, which worked nicely with the black and cream paper print.

The feet are wood pieces by Plaid, attached with a hot glue gun.

Shadowbox Feet

A few things aren’t obvious on first glance when examining the shadow box, but do affect the final look:

  • To avoid having white “raw” edges, I used a black ink pad to ink the edges of the photos to give them a drop shadow effect.
  • I cut the paper pieces as close as possible to measurement, and then used my Tim Holtz sanding block to trim them flush to the edges.
  • It was hard to get the feet precisely level applying them with hot glue. I used a skim coat of Ranger Glossy Accents on the bottom of one of them to level it when it ended up a hair shorter than the others because it was attached with less glue.
Travel Shadow Box

Would you like to get your vacation memories out where you can see them? A shadow box may be the answer!

[Some products used in this project were supplied to Nally Studios by Graphic 45 as editorial samples. This author has a professional affiliation with Cricut, however that relationship’s obligations do not include writing blog posts or posting projects. Some links in this post are affiliate links that support this website through commissions on purchases.]