February 2017 Blog Posts

When I saw the Carpe Diem recipe products, I fell in love!  I'm sure many of you out there are just like me, I have recipes everywhere!  Bookmarks, Pinterest, emails, print outs, etc.  Sometimes I forget to save recipes and have to search again for them.  I'm really excited to get all of our family favorites organized into one book and have fun with it!  

When I started flipping through the Recipe sticker book, and saw these scripted words, I knew I wanted to make some fun, faux, die cut dividers with them.  

I started by placing the stickers on a sheet of cardstock.  I cut the cardstock down to the width of the sticker.  

I fussy cut around the sides and top of the stickers.  I left a few inches of cardstock below the stickers.

I adhered these to cardstock that I cut down for the dividers.  

After I had all my dividers set up, I started adding my favorite recipes.  The Recipe Inserts have exactly what you need to record your recipes.

And the sticker pack has a lot of fun, colorful stickers to brighten up your pages!  

My kids love to help in the kitchen, and I always take pictures of them while they are busy being little chefs, so I thought the Recipe Doc-It Journal would be the perfect place to document this!  

 I love how this recipe planner is coming together! I hope you have just as much fun recording your recipes and time spent in he kitchen as I have! 



Hello everyone! Chantalle with you today to share some pages which both capture lots of action!   I’m absolutely smitten with the new releases - Domestic Bliss and Say Cheese III. They are both so full of fun. Even though we live far away from anything Disney, Say Cheese III was perfect for documenting a wonderful day out!
Kiss the Cook
I just love looking back on old photos. My DD and I were revisiting her kindergarten folder the other day - how adorable does she look in her special chef outfit?! The school had a special cookery programme where they would cook with one of the mums or a teacher. I once had the privilege of creating pizza lollipops with her little friends which was so special! Of course, as soon as I saw these photos I knew they would be a perfect match with Domestic Bliss!
I knew I wanted to use a lot of photos on this layout. Those busy little hands cooked up a storm over the year! I liked the idea of running the photos in two lines with the title in the middle. I worked up a kind of sketch in Silhouette Studio which gave me an idea of not only how big I could print the photos but also how big I could make the title in the centre. I’ve backed the cut area with some lovely yellow ‘Domestic Diva’ and ever-so-pretty floral touches of ‘Work it Girl’. Adding a teensy Chipboard Sticker as the dot in the ‘i’ adds a cute bit of consistency.
Here you can see how I have added a bit of dimension to a die cut shape from the Bits & Pieces pack by mirroring the pink heart shape. The smaller heart-shaped die cut has been raised on foam tape so it lifts the title and also ties in with the height from the oven glove die cut, on the opposite side of the word ‘cook’.
I just LOVE how well this little phrase sticker from the Domestic Bliss 4x6 sticker sheet works with this image! (Does anyone else have that song in their head now?? haha)
There is a lot going on in the embellishment department on this project too! I’ve added some stickers, some Roller Stamping and a few little splatters (batter can escape the bowl, right?) I really also love the new Brad sheets. Incorporating cardstock shapes, phrases and brads in one product, makes for lots of versatility!
Another way to add a bit more info to a page is with a Clear Sticker. I find them useful for adding a little extra chit chat, which doesn’t impact on the rest of the elements as they’re within the shape of the photo, plus they can be a great way of masking areas with less information in a photograph.
Magical Day Out
I remember how amazed I was, to learn of a castle, right here on our doorstep! Who would’ve thought that in the middle of the tropics was a medieval magical land just waiting to be explored! The Sunshine Castle proved to be brilliant day out. We all loved it so much, we would love to visit again.
I had lots of photos that I wanted to include in this page - there was so much to see and do! I’ve framed a few of the highlights using die cuts shapes from the Say Cheese III Bits & Pieces pack.
I’ve paired the large ‘magical’ chipboard sticker with a script font which I have cut using my Silhouette.
The chipboard castle sticker had a little flag on the top, making it iconic. I have snipped that flag off which makes the castle a bit more generic and suits my subject matter perfectly. I love the outlined stars and was excited to see them appear in Say Cheese III. I’ve repeated the shape in the form of Washi Tape, the Roller Stamp, clear stickers and ephemera. Something you will almost always see on one of my pages is a little bit of ‘chit chat’ as I like to call it. Phrase stickers are so handy and add just a little bit of extra personality to my projects.
Beneath this throne, you will find...
...Some more photos and journalling!
A great way to add more memories without overcrowding your design is to hide them. In this case, I have used a punch board to create a mini file folder which opens to reveal our thoughts on our adventurous day out and a few more images.
I’ve used a typewriter to journal onto some coloured vellum, which I have machine stitched inside the folder. Using a word processing programme or a photography app is a great way to squeeze multiple photos inside one shape.
Thanks so much for joining me today, wishing you lots of happy crafting!



Hi friends, it's Layle back with you again with week 2 of our Bible Journaling Sunday Series.  Today guest designer Rachel Lindas shares another layout in her Journaling Bible using our new Faith collection - I think you're going to love it!


Hi from Rachel Lindas.   I am excited to share another page in my journaling Bible with you this week.  If you are new to Bible Journaling, and wondering what I am doing to my Bible, I encourage you to return to my first Simple Stories post here where I describe what Bible Journaling is and what it has meant to me over the past two years as I’m led by God’s nudging. 

Getting started:

1.     I chose Matthew 5:14-16,  “You are the Light of the World…Let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”  In my Bible, these verses spread over two pages, so creativity will spread over the two pages following the verse.   I start by drawing a box around the verses (I like to go around them several times because I prefer a messy imperfect look.  Feel free to simply underline if that’s your preference.)  As I studied the verse I discerned that, although we are called to “shine the Light for Him”, we also need to check our motives, with the Holy Spirit’s, to make sure that the Light we are shining isn’t pointing on us/self, but that we are directing that Light beam towards our Heavenly Father…thus, always “shine the Light toward Him”.  We want the glory to be given to God and resist putting ourselves in the spotlight. 

2.     Sometimes, it comes as I go.  I knew I wanted to use the cute light bulbs and stickers that say, “Let your Light Shine.” However, it was not until I prayed and studied the verse that I realized I wanted to illustrate a beam pointing upwards so I could remember to “direct the beam toward Him and not on myself.”

3.     To create the “light beam” I placed the light bulb next to my verse at the bottom of the page.  Using a straight edge and journaling pen, I created the angles I wanted for the beam.  Next, I used the same Tim Holtz Distress Paints by Ranger that I used on my previous page blog post.  Then, I used the sponge dabber on top of the paint to apply directly on my page.  I suggest using a Bible Mat from Illustrated Faith or a piece of cardstock edge to make sure you don’t get paint outside of the lines you created.  Sometimes the paint can have a bit of an uneven look when you are using the dabbers and for this “light beam” I wanted a smooth look so gently using my aqua brush I  smoothed out the paint to achieve the look I was going for.  Watch this quick time lapse video to see how I did it 


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4.     Since I had my aqua brush out anyway I decided to add my favorite paint splatter to the page.  It’s so simple to achieve this look, however a bit messy.  I love the added touch it gives my pages so I do this a lot.  Get your paintbrush loaded with paint on it and then give it a gentle tap on top of the brush and paint splatters off of it onto your page.  Practice makes perfect.  It is easy, it is fun, and it is an obvious favorite of mine if you ever see my Bible.  Then I used my paintbrush with yellow paint on it and highlighted the verses. 

5.     The Simple Stories Faith line has a lot of small stickers that makes adding words and sayings to your page very easy.  On the page you will notice that I lined the bottom and the top of the next page with stickers. They each say something different but highlight things I want to remember about the verse.  I love outlining the stickers and letters with my black journaling pen so they look like a part of the page and not just stuck on.  It creates depth that I like.  They also have clear stickers that make adding fun arrows to your page easy.  They are very easy to work with since they have a clear base and do not cover up the words. 

6.     Using the Snap Stickers Basic set I finish my design.  The black and white alphas just pop with my yellow background.  Again, I take the time to trace around each letter to make them pop.  With the black letters I use my white uni ball pen and it glides like a charm over the dry yellow paint.  With the white letters I used my black journaling pen to trace around each one.  (But just make sure the paint is dry before you start writing on top of it with any kind of pen…remember, DRY before you write.)

8.     As I finish up a page I like to date stamp it, add a tab to top of the page to remind me of what I learned from that verse, thank God and then add any notes of wisdom and understanding in my own handwriting in the margin to remember what I have learned from studying and praying through the verse. 

Side note: For Bible Journaling I use special Bibles with 2 inch margins on every page and pages that are a bit thicker than your normal Bible.  For this layout I am using the hardcover NLT reflections Bible.  You can find them on Amazon, Christian Book stores, Daysprings, and Barnes and Noble.

FYI:  I have a study Bible that I do not create in. My Journaling Bible is a special place for me to document what I am learning as I study the Word of God. It’s a beautiful thing to have all of your prayers and notes all in one place documenting your faith walk with the Lord.  I truly believe we were all made to create as we are made in the image of the most amazing Creator of all, God. 




Howdy friends!  It's Layle, back again with my monthly Carpe Diem planner blog feature.  This month I challenged myself to do something a little bit out of my comfort zone - use a collection that isn't necessarily in my wheelhouse, so to speak, our new Faith collection.

Ok, time to get personal for a second - I'm not a religous person.  With that said, although I'm not religous, per se, I am a spiritual person.  And that's A-OK, right? Right!  We're all different and that's what makes this world such a great, diverse place.   When Amber, Simple Stories owner & Creative Director, designed the Faith collection, I was torn.  It is absolutely gorgeous; the colors, the florals, the patterns, it all speaks to me.  I knew I would use it, no doubt, I just needed to figure out how to make it work for ME.  

If you're scratching your head right now, wondering where all of this is headed, here's the point.  Have you ever looked at a baby scrapbook collection, found different parts of the collection that you're drawn to, but you steer away from it because you don't have a baby?   That would be my normal response to the Faith collection, in the past I would steer away from it because I would jump to conclusions and assume it wouldn't work for me.  Today I'm going to show you how you can use a collection that you are drawn to, but think may not work for you because of a specific theme.  

Before I jump in, Meka Meeks (one of our creative team members) created a gorgeous Faith themed planner a few weeks ago.  I encourage you to check it out here when you're done to see how she set up her planner;  it's truly inspiring and will give you an idea how to set up a faith based planner for yourself.

Now let's jump in!

The first thing I set out to create with the Faith collection a few weeks ago, before setting up my planner for March, was a Doc It Journal.  Similar in size to a Travelers Notebook, they're great for recording thoughts, notes, lists, bullet journaling - you name it.  

I did a bit of journaling about what I mentioned above - being a spiritual person vs a religous person.  It was fun to put my thoughts about it down on paper, something I've not done before.  As you can see, I used different stickers, washi, and die cuts from the Faith collection for my spread & they totally worked!  In fact, I knew right off the bat that I wanted to add the heart die cut with the Psalm -  even though it's religious in nature, that didn't stop me from using it because the words really spoke to me and emphasized my feelings & the words I was putting down on paper.

(Back to the baby analogy for a second - if you find a piece of scrapbook paper, sticker, die cut, etc that has a cute little bear or lamb or something that might be associated with a baby, don't let that stop you from using it if it speaks to you!)

Next step was to start setting up my planner for March.  Just how I like to change my purse out with a new season, I do the same thing with my planners - anyone else with me?!  For the spring I've transitioned to the new Clover planner - isn't it the prettiest thing you've ever seen?  I just love it and it goes beautifully with the Faith collection.  I added the fun Planner Decal to the front; they're super easy to apply, and a great way to temporarily switch up the look of your planner!  I ended up adding the flower clear stickers to tie the inside theme of my planner in with the outside.

After the cover, I set out to decorate the inside.  This is where the 'thinking out of the box' comes into play.  I knew I didn't want to set up a specific faith theme for the month, so I looked through the collection and found the patterns, icons, etc that were inspiring to me & I'm really happy with the way it turned out!   

I started by decorating the pockets - that's always the first thing I do when setting up a new planner.  I added 3x4 Elements to the pockets, then accessorized with clips from the Faith collection and a few stickers.  A few of the Page Flags from the Posh collection matched really well, so I used 3 of them in the bottom pocket, along with 2 more Faith clips.

I'll let you in on a little secret...  I always have a piece of coordinating paper, stickers, etc tucked in the big pocket to the right of the pockets.  Want to know why?  Not because it's cute (ok, it is though, right?!) and not because it's sticker storage for when I need them on the go.  It's actually to cover up my 'on the go' Washi!

I like to tear off a few strips of coordinating washi and 'store' it there in my planner, that way I have washi with me on the go when I need it!

After decorating the pockets, next step was to customize the dashboard - a really quick & easy way to change the entire look of your planner when you open it.  I've been making dashboards since I started planning a few years ago & I have to say - our new A5 Punch is a game changer, people!


Makes it SO easy to punch those 6 holes!  Up until this point, I've been using another pre-punched page as a template and a single whole punch to punch each hole individually.  The punch does it in one punch.  Sounds basic, but it makes such a difference!  When we designed it, we spent quite a bit of time considering what we wanted in a punch.  The best part about it is the guide along the left edge, so you know exactly where to place your paper each and every time - no guessing or lining up pages or measuring!  Trust me, you're going to want to pick one of these up when we start shipping to retailers in May!

With this release we introduced 6x8 pads & I have to tell you, when it comes to dashboards, the pads are the bomb!  No more measuring and trimming because the 6x8 papers in the pad make the perfect sized dashboards!

As you can tell, I love the florals in the collection, so I continued to carry that theme into my monthly spread.  I started by adding the floral washi to both pages, the handy dandy punch punched through the washi like butter!

Next up - decorating the spread.  I always start out by dating the calendar.  A mix of handwritten numbers paired with numbered stickers is my go to 

From there I pulled out the Sticker Tablet and went to town.  Ok, let's talk stickers for a minute!  The new Sticker Tablets are amazing - the Faith Sticker Tablet has 12 A5 sticker sheets with more than 700 stickers!  Talk about sticker heaven :)  

I had no problem finding PLENTY of stickers & sentiments that fit the look and feel I was going for, without being too religious

We're headed to Planner Con next month; as I was looking at the stickers, it occured to me that the bible looked like a planner!  So I cut off the bottom of the sticker & voila - a planner :)

Here's the 1st week in March.  

Another example about thinking outside of the box and looking at products in a different way is the washi I used on this page.  Although as part of the Faith collection the marks on the washi are intended to be crosses, when you look at it again outside of the theme, they can just be a whimsical + decoration.

Another simple dashboard here - a vertical 4x6 Element, punched with a few stickers added.  The sentiment on the dashboard is something I'll really focus on trying to do this month & will move from week to week in my planner as a reminder.

So there you have it, my planner set up for March.  I hope I've given you some ideas for looking at collections and products differently to see how you might be able to use them in your planning, scrapbooking & crafting projects!

If you're looking for more ideas on decorating your planner, check our our LIVE LOVE PLAN Pinterest board - with more than 600 pins featuring our Carpe Diem planners, you're sure to be inspired!







Hello Friends! Alexandra here with a new double Pocket page documenting our life on WEEK 7.

It's a week full of hearts and pretty flowers since we were celebrating Valentine's day. The Love & Adore collection is absolutely perfect to illustrate any types of love! 

I made a collage of photos taken on Valentine's day and added a sticker directly on it. 

Miss Lily had organized a Secret Valentine which was a lot of fun. We exchanged little gifts we had either made or purchased for no more than ten dollars and in the evening DH and I watched the beautiful movie The Light Between the Oceans. Anybody else out there totally smitten by Michael Fassbender?

Here is another example of stickers added directly onto the photos.

We move from pink to blue with the right page which is essentially about our sunny week-end in Chicago.

I used a small tag that I cut from the 6x6 paper pad

Thank You! Merci!


Hello everyone, welcome back to the blog! It’s Stacy here on the blog today, sharing 2 layouts using the Domestic Bliss collection. I am in love with this new collection, the colours and embellishments really fit my recent photos!

The sweet colours of this collection made me think of my niece, Sophie! She is the first niece in the family, and therefore very much doted by everyone. This photo was taken at the age of 2 months, and I really love how comfortable she looks, sound asleep with 2 guardian angels taking care of her! Therefore, for the first layout, I just had to use a photo of my dear niece.


Such a sleeping beauty isn’t she? I decided to use a dream-catcher as the background, since I often wonder what she is dreaming of when she is sound asleep.


I added some enamel dots of the same collection onto the dream-catcher; they add dimensions to the background! Next, I rummaged through the bits & pieces pack – there were some awesome looking callout signs which suited the story I wanted to tell. The sticker sheet had complementing stickers too which I could not resist!


Some more ephemera selected in conjunction with my story. This pack is really handy in a lot of ways.


The feathers and title were also cut using my silhouette cameo. I love the array of colours on the feathers! This collection has the best colour combination ever! Here I am using the pattern papers Mom Rules & Bless this Mess.

Chipboard embellishments are another of my favourite decorations. They add dimensions and layering to the entire layout. Try layering the chipboards to create different dimensions.


This Home is Filled With Love
This layout uses the same collection, Domestic Bliss. The photo was taken recently during a family gathering, and I knew I wanted to use this photo with this collection. I started planning the page with circles and a home cut file.

The title was inspired by the elements found on the chipboard pack and the combo sticker. While going through the supplies, this title literally jumped on me and I thought it might work well with the house as the background.

I wanted to prevent the layout from looking too squarish, and at the same time flowing with the circular elements which I wanted to add. Therefore, I did some simple running stitches in circular form, highlighting parts of the layout. Here I have added some ephemeras from the Bits & Pieces pack, and I deliberately cut the lower part of the circular element (from one of the pattern paper in the collection) to be used on another part of the layout. There are really no rules about cutting up ephemeras, use it to suit your layout!

On the lower part of the layout, I laid out the embellishments so they look like my living room in order to tell the story. The elements in this collection are perfect! I did some fussy cutting on one of the pattern papers for this couch. There is a part of me that yells “Stitch it!” when I looked at the couch, so I went ahead to do some simple stitches! I love how different it looked before and after the stitching! Stitching does give some added dimensions, and that is why I enjoy doing some stitching on layouts. Just below the couch, I have added the part of the circular element.

Added ephemera to form my living room scene with some potted plants and of course, Winston!

Hope you have enjoyed the walk through today, and thank you for joining me today!






Hello Friends! 
It's Kristine Davidson here with you today and I am so excited to be sharing some new pages with you that were created for the January CHA/Creativation Show! I used the new funny, fabulous & fun collection called - EMOJI LOVE. Oh my goodness, when I first saw the cute emojis on a sheet of paper I was like WHAT?!!! Too much fun. 
I created 2 layouts with this collection and I can't wait to create more fun projects with it... mini album, birthday card you can do so much with this fun collection. 
My first layout is of my niece. She has now reached the title of "teenager" and my photos of her are rare.  I sent her a message saying - hey I got this cool collection I have to play with, can you send me a cool pic?  Well safe to say I didn't get one.  So as an aunt and scrapbooker I searched her Instagram feed until I found a cute pic and then I just added a little fun to it with some filters. Those glasses were perfect for me to play with this Emoji Love Collection.
I first started my page with a black cardstock. I am loving the black lately and this collection has so many great papers that go so well with black. Something different than the usual go to white cardstock. 
I added strips of papers, and I layered some washi tape on top of those papers too!  I had some fun emoji brads that I wanted to add so I placed them on top of the strip of paper that has tons of emojis. 

I layered some chipboard pieces, some journal strips, and instead of adding another photo or journal card I used a journal card. 
I used some stickers, and called this layout OMG Seriously?! Which is something my niece says often when I ask her stupid questions! ;)

How fun right ? Those green glasses? Perfect!


My second layout is a story. This layout was created using tons of great stickers, bits & pieces, enamel dots and more!   I didn't use any photos on this layout - I just wanted to create a little emoji story! 

The Story: 
Guy: Hey Smile!
Girlfriend: Hey Love, Come to a Party with my BFF?
Guy: Yes I would love to party with you. 
Girlfriend:YAY! I'm getting ready doing my nails and getting my dancing shoes! Seriously! 
Guy: OMG, I have my shades and Vans and good to go!
Girlfriend: ROFL 
Guy: Having a snack; fries and pizza. Oops gotta poop! LOL 
Girlfriend: OMG Poop? LOL 
Guy: That Stinks .. WOW 
Girlfriend: LOL Awkward! 
Guy: Kisses! 

That's my story! I had a blast using this collection. I am sure with today's teens you can come up with your own page using some emojis, screen shots of text messages or facebook chats. Have fun with it! Please share your pages on Instagram with #SimpleStories and you can tag me as well #KristineDavidson, I would love to see your EMOJI LOVE pages!


Good morning friends! Brenda Smith here sharing my planner set up and a planner spread using the Emoji Love collection.

I couldn't resist filling my planner pockets with all the cuteness Emoji Love has to offer. I mounted the "Sparkle and Shine" (taken directly from the Emoji Love 6x8 pad onto some white card stock for an easy dashboard. I make sure to keep the 4x6 sticker sheets tucked in my planner because I use them so often. 

To make this memory planner spread, I started by trimming down some patterned papers from the 6x8 pad to fit in the vertical boxes. I also trimmed some of the papers to work kind of like washi to cover the headers. 

I used hole reinforcers and number stickers from the Posh collection. I usually have issue when there's too much dimension on my planner pages so I typically steer clear of chipboard elements. But the Simple Stories chipboard pieces are thin enough to go into your planners without causing too much bulkiness.

I had some fun with fringe scissors at the bottom of the spread. I like how it adds texture and flair without too much extra work. 

I am still loving those calendar stickers from the Posh collection. I love that I can see the month at a glance on each spread if I wish. I love the little starburst embellishments in this collection and I used them all over the spread as my uniting element.

I love that I have such a fun space to document all the funny and smart things my kids say.  Even if they never make it onto a scrapbook page, I'm happy to have these stories told.

Are you following Carpe Diem Planners on Instagram? Be sure to follow for daily inspiration!