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August 2013

We have so many talented layout artists here at theStudio.  Have you looked through our Gallery lately?  I like a lot of different layout styles, but I am particularly fond of clustered frames.

In working with clusters, sometimes we need to adjust the size of our elements to create the look that we want.  Here is a gorgeous cluster that Kabra, a member of my Creative Team, created using Scenic Route.


I totally love this cluster as it is, but what if I wanted to make it just a little smaller so I could include another photo, some journaling, or .. .just something else on my page? I wouldn’t want  to resize each element individually, and here is where linking layers comes in handy.

When layers are linked together, they stay together / work together until you unlink them.  That means you can resize, move, rotate or manipulate linked layers; and they will maintain their relationship with each other, spatially and proportionately, until they are unlinked.

To link layers, select the layers (in the Layers panel) that you want linked together, then click on the little chain icon at the bottom of the Layers panel.


You will see a chain icon on each layer that is linked together.


With the elements in this cluster linked, I can easily resize it to suit my needs. Because I linked the layers before resizing, each element resized in proportion to the other elements within the cluster. (I chose not to resize the frame or the yellow ribbon under the frame.)


To unlink layers, just select the layer(s) that you do not want linked together and again click on the chain icon.  You may unlink just one layer (if you selected one that you did not mean to link, for example) or you may unlink all of the layers at once.

Quick Tip:  To temporarily disable a linked layer, Shift + Click the link icon on that layer.  A red “X” will appear on that layer’s chain icon.  When you want to relink that layer, Shift + Click on the chain icon again to enable the link.

Adobe Photoshop Elements also has Linking capabilities, although they are accessed differently. PSE users, you will need to select all layers you want linked, right click, and choose the “Link Layers” option in the Drop-Down Box.  To unlink, select the layers you want to unlink, right click, and choose “Unlink Layers.”  (Tested in PSE11)

And that’s how easy it is to keep your clustered elements proportionate when you want to size them all at once!

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The talented Darlene from Studio4 Designworks has created this amazing new kit for you called Painted Brush. This kit will surely bring out your inner creativity, since it is filled with the most beautiful and warm colors from beige to shades of pink and blue. There are over 50 beautiful elements to help you to create your pages. The papers will give you a perfect background to create on. Painted Brush is absolutely perfect for all kind of photo’s. Photo’s from your kids, relatives or from yourself. Painted Brush gives you the opportunity to cluster, to add multiple photo’s, but it also gives you the chance to create a journal or art journal page. Painted Brush by Studio4 Designworks simply is a fantastic kit to scrap with!!

De getalenteerde Darlene van Studio4 Designworks heeft een geweldige nieuwe kit voor jullie gemaakt: Painted Brush. Deze kit brengt je innerlijke creativiteit naar buiten, aangezien het gevuld is met hele mooie en warme kleuren van beige to tinten roze en blauw. Er zijn meer dan 50 elementen die je helpen je pagina te creëren. De papers zorgen voor een perfecte achtergrond. Painted Brush is echt helemaal geschikt voor allerlei foto’s. Foto’s van je kinderen, familie of van jezelf. Painted Brush geeft je de kans om prachtige clusters te maken, om meerdere foto’s te gebruiken, maar is ook zeer geschikt om een journal of art journal pagina mee te creëren. Painted Brush van Studio4 Designworks is domweg een fantasische kit om mee te scrappen!


I’ve made a quickpage for you with this amazing kit, just to show you what you can do with it, but of course there are many more ways to use this kit. Please enjoy!

Ik heb een quickpage voor jullie gemaakt met deze prachtige kit, om te laten zien wat je er allemaal mee kan. Natuurlijk heef deze kit nog veel meer mogelijkheden! Veel plezier ermee!

***Download No Longer Available***


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Before I start babbling about how fantastic my vacation was, and it was so, so fantastic, I’m putting in one little disclaimer: it was a roadtrip with kids. It was not perfect. However, from now on, it will sound perfect and be perfect in my memory.

For the first time we went on vacation. A whole, week-long, proper vacation. Not 2-3-4 days. A week. Including two weekends. This is what I needed. I needed time with Dave. I needed time with the kids. I needed time to breath. And to be able to do it in Europe, to drive to Italy, through France, Switzerland, brush past Monaco & Austria, well there aren’t words enough to describe how incredibly blessed I feel. Just the drive. The beauty, the history, the culture is an amazing experience. I’d say my eyes are “all looked out” but they’re not. I could do this again tomorrow.

Roadtrips in Europe are expensive. I’m quadruple-y grateful for Veronica, not only is she beautiful, blue & big but she is diesel. We drove through Switzerland, through Italy, all the way to the South of France (Cannes) before filling up again! With controlled, highway speeds she can go 1,200 kilometers. I’d also searched diligently for reasonable hotels, hostels, gîtes (more on this Saturday) and home-away-from-homes. A must for the budget-minded traveler. None of my finds are the Ritz-Carlton, or even a Motel Six alongside the highway. They are, however, part of the experience of traveling Europe.

Our first day we had a reservation in Genova (Genoa, Italy) 600+ km away. We weren’t in a rush, and stopped to enjoy the Rheinfalls in Switzerland. Not as big as Niagara, but still the biggest plain falls in Europe, powerful, stunning and it was a perfect sunny day. My only regret is that we didn’t do the Schloss Laufen (castle walk) to see the falls from all the different viewpoints, but with wriggle-worm Dane in tow I was too nervous. I also greatly regret stopping to eat in Switzerland. I’d promised the kids McDonalds on the way down to Italy, and we found a McDonalds in Switzerland. Switzerland is not part of the EU. It is not part of the Euro. They have their own money, Swiss Francs, CHF, or as we call them “chufs”.

One McDonalds double cheeseburger was CHF 3.90 or $4.25. As a family of five, including one teenage boy, we do not eat only one McDonalds double cheeseburger. As beautiful as Switzerland is, from now on it will be day trips with a packed picnic! I can’t imagine the cost of sitting down for a cheese fondue (on my bucket list) with the perfect glass of wine.

Switzerland, and Germany, are both beautifully maintained. The roads are near-perfect. The grass alongside mowed, garbage almost non-existent. The multiple tunnels in Switzerland are well lit, well ventilated, clean, wide, seemingly brand new with emergency exits every 300 meters. Then we got to Italy. The excitement in our car overflowed. Tess almost bounced out of her seat, she is part Italian you know, from Dave’s grandfather, Sicilian by birth. Immediately it looked Italian (I’d been once before: Naples & Pompei I). It felt Italian. And the tunnels screamed Italian. They were darker, not as well-lit, not as clean, smaller with less exits. The difference in tunnels, only miles apart, clearly illustrates the difference in economics between Switzerland & Italy.

When we got to Genova, it was chaos. Italians are not as orderly, are not as sign-crazy, as the Germans. Also, Genova is a maze of teeny, tiny alleys. Many of them one-way. Our GPS was not hip to the Genova way of roadage. Finding our hostel/hotel, after four separate attempts, was a testament to Dave’s land navigation skills. On a street with towering buildings, there was one door tucked in amongst many, and that was our hotel. Inside the lobby was cool, dark, old. The actual check-in desk up stairs of worn marble curved in. The young man checking us in spoke wonderful English, though, at first, he answered my broken Italian in Dutch. It turns out I speak all languages with a strong Dutch accent, despite having left Holland at 12.

After check-in, and exploring our rooms (yes rooms, but with ceilings so low I felt like a giant! And I’m 5’2″), we walked down to the port, a mere two blocks away. The sun was setting beautiful on the water, ships and yachts(!). Behind us the city glowed with warm yellows and oranges. While the kids jumped on a trampoline by the waterfront, the wonderful operator cheering them on & helping Dane get higher, I took my camera and took pictures. I could’ve stayed in Genova for years. Just to take pictures.


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No need for Craft Scissors – Scalloped Notecard with the Cameo

by Min 27 August 2013
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Do you love pinking shears? I do…. but somehow I almost never manage to have a “straight cut” card after trying to give it a decorative border… sometimes it looks more like one of our guinea pigs nibbled at the card, lol. Fortunately the Cameo is coming to my rescue with that! If you own […]

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LOTW August 18 – 24 And the winner is ….

by renee 25 August 2013
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Miss Pepper with her fabulous page Berry Picking. I love the feel of this page, the beautiful and happy colors and theme. The wordart is awesome, but most of all I love how Miss Pepper blended in the photo of that lovely young girl! In my opinion this really is an outstanding page, so congrats […]

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Using the Patch Tool in Photoshop

by SnickerdoodleDesigns 23 August 2013
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The Patch Tool in Photoshop ranks high on my list of all-time-favorite Photoshop tools.  For a long time I didn’t even know it was there, hiding so quietly in the Toolbox. The photo below is of my mother-in-law, Fran, and my grandson, Tyler. Although the background could certainly have been chosen better, I love this […]

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Back to School by Valentina’s Creations and a free quickpage for you!

by renee 23 August 2013

It’s that time again that after a long Summer break kids are going back to school. My kids already started a week ago, but other kids me be starting next week or the week after. I always find it special and exiting when the kids start school again, going to a new class, maybe a […]

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This or That by Nibbles Skribbles

by tammy 22 August 2013

Whether you’re scrapping a decision, a shopping trip or just your everyday life, This or That by Nibbles Skribbles has a little of this and that and everything in-between to allow you to create the perfect layout!  It’s just packed full of great colors and elements, so much fun to scrap with!!! And if that’s […]

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LOTW August 11 – 17 And the winner is ….

by renee 18 August 2013
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Pepette with her fabulous page Back to the Childhood. I love the composition and clustering here, and the amazing colors of photo and kit go together just great. The photo is absolutely beautiful too! So congrats Pepette on winning this week’s LOTW! This wonderful page was created with the beautiful Back to the Childhood ~ […]

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Back-2-School Fun & Sales!

by Toiny Westberry 17 August 2013

  Every year we have a Back-2-School sale in both our Personal Use & Commercial Use stores; and some extra forum challenges especially designed to get you ready for the new school year! Please join us for the Then & Now Challenge; Template Exchange; School Questionnaire; Lunch Box Notes Challenge and the Favorite Teacher! There’s also […]

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