Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Christmas All Year Long: Part 1

Did you start a Document Your December (December Daily) or holiday album back in December? Did you finish it yet? Personally, I am the Queen of Good Intentions. I get excited about projects. I get excited about the IDEA of projects. I might even start projects. But I have trouble finishing projects. This is why my One Little Word for 2013 is, in fact, FINISH. In the spirit of trying to finish more projects this year, I am starting a recurring series on the blog called “Christmas All Year Long”. Every couple of months, I will blog my progress on my December holiday album using digital, hybrid, and some paper supplies. 

Some time back in December, I had gathered all my supplies, both digital and traditional, with the intention of starting and making my album. It never happened. December is one of the busiest months at my job as a budget analyst. I just could not fit it in. But the gathering of supplies was not in vain. I finally started my album this past Sunday and was able to make quick progress because all my December album supplies were contained in three containers. (The digital supplies are in a folder on my hard drive.)

I have a bin for stamps that I want to use.

I have a clear IRIS container for all the papers and embellishments.

And I have a divided box for other tools and supplies such as paints, mist sprays, pens, twine, inks, and tapes.


I purchased a Simple Stories 6x8 album in red binding through a special at The Lilypad back in the October/November time frame. The album is a kraft chipboard binder, with colored fabric binding. I wanted to create a whitish background for my cover, so I took out the gesso that I had purchased about a year ago and never used because I was scared of it. Turns out that gesso is not that scary. I just went for it and painted a thin layer onto the cover of my album with a foam brush.

Next came the paint. Paint was also something I was scared of. I think the fact that I’m doing this album starting in March actually freed me from the anxiety of messing up. I mean, I didn’t start the album in December. So if I mess up now, it’s still better than the album sitting there unused! So I put a Studio Calico hexagon plastic mask down and started painting in the hexagons with different Martha Stewart craft paint colors. It didn’t have to be perfect, I just did the best I could.


I love how the pearl and metallic paints have a shiny sheen to them.

After I was done, I took the template off and I was left with some colorful hexagons.

Next, I picked some digital supplies from The Lilypad and dragged them onto a 8.5x11 canvas in Photoshop so I could print them out.  Once I had them lined up on the canvas, I printed it out using matte photo paper.

Digital supplies:

December Stories by Designs by Lili
Perty Polaroids by Allison Pennington
Christmas Journal Cards by Sabrina Dupre Designs
Christmas Journal Cards by Sahlin Studio
Kitschy Christmas Journaling by Sahlin Studio
Modern Merry Flags by Amy Jaz Designs

I cut my sheet of printed digital supplies out and arranged them on my album cover, along with some twine, washi tapes, glitter tape, and glitter lace tape.

My cover was finished!  Yay!



Next, I wanted to get all my December photos that I want to use into the same place.  I created a tag in Adobe Lightroom called “December_Album”.  Then as I went through my photos in the month of December, I tagged the ones I want to use.  Once the photos were tagged, I can just click on my “December_Album” tag on the right and see all the photos I want to include in my December album!


I am pretty much doing my album chronologically, but not documenting every single day in December.  So I decided to make a page about our third annual Elf Party because the party was on December 1st.  I measured the full-size page protector in my album and it would fit a 8.25x6.25 page, so I opened up Photoshop and created a new blank canvas that exact size.  I wanted to use one of the png word art files from Story Starters: Holiday Stories by CD Muckosky as the basis for my page.  I dragged the png file onto my canvas and did a gradient overlay on it with red and green colors.  I also used a Studio Calico digital brush for the hanging star on top.

Then I printed it out on 8.5x11 white Bazzill cardstock.

After trimming it to the 8.25x6.25 size, I made my layout using the digital elements that I had printed out, plus some paper supplies.

I love how the printed word art totally goes with my page and looks like doodling.

Here’s my finished page about the Elf Party.

And here it is inside the page protector in my album.

I’ll be making more progress on my album and continuing this blog series.  So, until next time…




  1. nice job. I love your cover page colors and clusters.

  2. I did get my 2012 December Daily finished... now it's time to put the finishing touches on the 2011 265 book, and get the 2010 December Daily book finished!! Hope I can even remember what the pictures from Dec 2010 were about :)

  3. Love the hexagons...such a cool cover page.

  4. I SO need to do this! I have all the supplies, journaling, and photos together for BOTH my 2011 AND 2012 Christmas albums and just haven't taken the time to put them together. I'll be playing along with you this year to finish both of those up!

  5. i'm going to go on this journey with you. i've got all my supplies together and have printed a few pictures, but the kids got sick... no more excuses. :) thanks for the inspiration.

  6. I'm going to use you to inspire me to GET ON WITH IT ALREADY!


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