Happy Digital Scrapbook Day!

dsd2014_650Happy Digital Scrapbook Day! Okay, okay, I know it’s not *officially* DSD until Saturday, but at P&Co, we’ve kicked things off early. We’ve got a sitewide sale (save as much as 50% off your order!), plus lots of fun contests, challenges, and games going all weekend long. Hopefully you’ve made your way here by following along on the blog hop, because you definitely want some of this:

pco_northofordinary_previewBut, before I send you on your way with the final letter to your code, I’ve got a couple of things to share with you!

First up, I have a little tip for you: Invest in Mtn Dew, because seriously… I’m singlehandedly keeping the company in business right now. (In other words, I’m sorry I don’t have a tutorial for you today, but instead, I’d like to link you to this easy recoloring tutorial – with an accompanying freebie – that I did a few months ago.)

Secondly, I have a couple of brand-new collabs in the shop, and I’d love to have you check them out! First up is Handmade, with the über-talented Jen Allyson, featuring lots of unique papers, doodles, and elements for a totally handcrafted feel:gbja_handmade_previewAmanda Yi Designs and I also put together a fun one called Now Trending, full of bright colors and trendy motifs: aydgb_nowtrending_previewI also have two great build-your-own Grab Bags for you, in both Boystache (medium) and Manstache (large) sizes. Just list the kits you want (from my store) in the “customer notes” section when placing your order, and I’ll send you a coupon code to download them within 48 hours!

Alright, that brings us to the end of our regularly-scheduled program. Here’s my portion of North of Ordinary:Gen600And, here’s a little tidbit of trivia for you: Two years ago, almost to the day, I was in the process of planning a store. The very first step – before you start planning a website, or designing a logo – is to come up with a name, and it’s also one of the most difficult. I had quite a few of my fabulous friends and colleagues helping brainstorm, and we came up with (what we thought was) the perfect name for the new store. Unfortunately, when I went to buy the domain, North of Ordinary was already taken. We went back to the drawing board, and ended up with the Pixels and Company that you are familiar with today, but the name (and concept) of North of Ordinary has stuck with us, and is what inspired this P&Co collab. True Story.

Once again, here’s the list of participants:

Scooty’s Designs
Amanda Yi Designs
Mari Koegelenberg
Dawn by Design
Digital Scrapbook Ingredients
Sabrina’s Creations
Scotty Girl Design
KimB’s Designs
Celeste Knight
Jen Allyson
Sugarplum Paperie
Kelleigh Ratzlaff Designs
Robyn Meierotto
Wishing Well Creations by Laura Passage
Anita Designs
Deena Rutter
Karla Dudley
Gennifer Bursett <– You are HERE!

And with my letter (below), you should have a grand total of 20 characters. You’ll want to add North of Ordinary to your cart, and then enter the code – all uppercase, with no spaces – in the “coupon code” redemption field, and then check out as normal. Have fun!


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Adjust the color of your picture

Hello! Helene aka buzinettescrap is here to talk about my favourite technique that I used on nearly all my layout. This is how I adjust the color of my picture to the color of a kit.

I don’t know you but me, when I see a page with a photo whose colors harmonize perfectly with the kit used, I am still in awe.
Sometimes it’s simple because it looks like the kit is made for your photo (but you need to admit that it happens rarely anyway ;)) but more often, it still lacks a little brightness or colors of the image are almost … but not quite the same …. it happens to me all the time (after all, I’m not a professional photographer ….)

Then to adjuct the color it and bring my pictures to the colors of the kit that I use, I have my little secret (very simple and really takes very little time when we usually use … yes, I promise!).

Before to start the explaination, I want to apologize because I use GIMP software and not photoshop to scrap and my software is in French (after all, I‘m French lol). But I know that you can find the same options on photoshop and I translated the important terms for you 😉

So, for this tutorial, I begin with this layout and this picture …

layout begin

Yes, the light on my layout is really bad and not adapted to the color of the kit.

But I really love this one and want to use this cute picture of my daughter.

To adjust the color of them to the color of the kit, i start by using the option curve of my software (you can find them under the menu color)


On the window that open, you can lighter or darker the picture by moved the line like this



Sometimes, I add a new layer above the picture layer. I select the pixels of the picture and fill the layer above with a light color from the kit


I finally change the layer mode to overlay and reduce a little the opacity of this layer. I obtain this result for my layout


Really simple but this make really the difference on my layout, isn’t it?

Now you know one of my secret to adjust the color of my picture? And you, do you have some secrets to transform your picture to match the color of a kit? I’d loved to know them and see your layout with color adjustment!

Have a nice day




How I Survived My First Half Year Of Pocket Scrapbooking

Hey, it’s Alina aka alinalove writing and bringing you my experiences of my first half year of digital pocket scrapbooking. This is actually not my first year. I tried it last year and failed miserably at following through. Week 13 in 2013 was my last one and looking back, it was no miracle I couldn’t finish the year up. I will come back to that later. What you will know after reading this article is what my stumbling blocks and stepping stones were to my half year success. And you will know that I’m not made for long time projects. So just be sure that even when you are awfully behind, have close to no photos or journaling of the yet unscrapped weeks, you can still catch up and follow through if you want to. If I can do it, you can do it, too. Let me inspire you to find a new start!

My front cover for the book

My front cover for the book.

Starting a New Year Beginning something is always easy for me. I suppose you can relate. Everything is fresh and exciting. I have lots and lots of ideas in my mind how, when and why I want to do it. I knew right away that I wanted to keep most of my rules open. When I am thinking of a long term project, I want to look forward to trying new kits, new colors, cute embellishments. If I make my rules too narrow, I will get bored easily. So I chose to have only two rules: 2 pages per week and using the same kind of templates through the whole year. I had some other rules on a mental note but I couldn’t keep up with them. E.g. initially I wanted to set a color scheme or at least one color per month. This wasn’t working for me, as I’m always convinced I need THIS SPECIAL KIT for the coming week and the colors aren’t as important anymore. I also wanted to use more of the theme specific stamps and wordarts. This just wasn’t happening because it took too long for me to decide which items I would be using on this particular spread. There are too many choices, too many cute kits. Did you set up some rules for your new year regarding your pocket scrapbooking? Did you stick to all your rules?

Last week of being caught up.

Last week of being caught up.

Falling Behind In February it happened. I just stopped making my spreads. I had other projects beginning at that time just like last year and it sucked up all my additional energy for my creative outlet. And later, even if I had the time, I had no spark to continue. In May I realized, that if I want to finish my year, I have to get up and do something.

First week of catching up. Also becoming more minimalist. Not too many photos.

First week of catching up. Also becoming more minimalist. Not too many photos.

Catching Up I’m not a big planner or organizer anymore. I had been and all the planning and organizing took a whole lot of time and energy but I was never following through with my intentions. On one hand this is great, because I just “do” things instead of wondering for a long time how I would do it. On the other hand my projects might get a bit messy at times. And that is what happened here. I had some photos for most of my weeks. For one week or two weeks, there weren’t many of them. Additionally I had close to no journaling taken through the weeks that I fell behind. So what could I do? I used what I had. I took my photos, asked my husband to provide his and sometimes used pictures from the internet if it was fitting. To get an idea what was happening through the weeks, I consulted my calendar and emails and also asked my husband what happened in his week. I started from my first week that was undone and slowly crawled my way up to week 26. It took me about two months to catch up with 16 weeks. The closer I got to the current week, the easier it got because I had more info in my head and in the later weeks I got more aware of taking photos for my project. I also noticed that the more I proceeded, the more minimalist my spreads got. Speaking of consistency. Well, no, not me. I had two weeks that were dominated by an exhausting event. My dog was sick. I took mostly photos of him and us waiting for him to be treated in the vet clinic. While these were important weeks for me with lots of insight, I still didn’t want to “spam” four pages with the same content. I decided to break my rule of two pages per week and made two pages for two weeks. How do you catch up on your project? Do you have any tips and tricks for me?

One of the weeks when I had very little photos and not much journaling at hand. Still love that week scrapped.

One of the weeks when I had very little photos and not much journaling at hand. Still love that week scrapped.

Motivation There are two ways for me of looking at motivation here. One is the general motivation, why I do my weekly spreads and the other is the not too literal kick in the butt why I continued in May. I know that many of you doing pocket scrapbooking have your kids in mind. You want them to know in years ahead what their childhood looked like, what you did together, how much you love(d) them. This is a perfect motivator to keep on scrapping. Since we have no kids, this can’t be my reason. I don’t want to bother you that much with all my reasons why and only mention two here. It’s just that everytime I look back at an event I can’t remember when it was. That’s pretty much it! I seem to have a partial dementia when it comes to past things. I don’t remember that much. Life seems to have passed by and I wasn’t in it. I remember my first attempt at pocket scrapbooking last year, when I suddenly remembered everything that happened during the first weeks. That was so relieving and making me happy. Pocket scrapbooking is my diary. Beside that I just love scrapbooking and working with pretty things. These are my biggest general motivators. I had several motivators to get me up from my slump. First I knew that I would be writing this article. How should I do that without having made my spreads? I also knew that I wanted to print a halfyear book. I love to have my year in two books because it makes me look back at the first six month and reconsider what I want for the rest of the year. It’s like a new year in June. Looking forward to having my book printed (for real!) made me go even faster. What could your kick-butt motivator be to make you continue with your project?

MInimalist me taking over again. Starting with more pictures for the spread.

MInimalist me taking over again. Starting with more pictures for the spread.

Outlook for the next 6 months What do I want to keep on my journey to the full year and what will I discard? I do go along with my project a little randomly. I like it that way, it’s just how I am. I do embellish a lot, I do process all of my photos for a consistent look in a week. And yes, all of that takes a lot of time. I know it would be easier if I took one look and replicated it through the whole year. Sounds boring to me though. I might let go of the large scale embellishing. I have to have something 3d on my pages to make me happy, maybe it doesn’t have to be that much to still make me smile. I will keep on with the two pages per week and the same templates. I will rethink that for next year. I really want to be up to date with my weeks but I know this won’t always be the case, so I just don’t promise myself or I will be dissappointed. I have to keep it open as much as I can to be able to finish this time.

Last page for the half year book. It was so relieving to have the 6 months closed.

Last page for the half year book. It was so relieving to have the 6 months closed.

Just Do It! My approach to this kind of project might differ to many others, because it’s very open, unorganized and random. I made the project my own and do it although I’m not perfect at taking notes and photos. There are lots of styles out there and looking through them I like all of them because I can see the person behind the project peeking through. I hope I could inspire you to get your project on your desktop again or sparked a new motivation to get going with more fun! Don’t believe that your spreads have to be perfect in any way. Just let them represent your life!

My first half year in printed form :-)

My first half year in printed form 🙂

If you want to browse through my weekly gallery, here is the link to my pinterest board. You will also find descriptions to most of the stash I used. Thank you so much for reading and stay tuned for more tutorials and inspiration on Gen’s blog!

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Capturing the Essense of Summer!

Hello! Lori posting today from Gen’s Creative Team. It is summer time for those of us in the northern hemisphere, and for many that means lazy, hazy days. Those lazy, hazy days can be the perfect opportunity to create wonderful memories and document a life well lived! Capturing your life in photos lets you preserve all of the special little details that we love to remember when time has moved on.

Here is a list of some of the great traditions of summer that you will want to photograph before the season is over (you can click on the image to make it larger).


To photograph these memories, here are some of my favorite tips:

  • Get low – kneel, lie on your stomach, squat down to take a photo. Get eye level with your subject. Don’t worry about getting dirty or looking funny – you will love that you adjusted your perspective later when you look at your photos!
  • Take photos of the details – get up close and personal with subject: the flowers, the food, the labels on the products. Macro shots and cropping in on the details allows you to highlight special aspects of your summer life in a fresh, new way.
  • Take photos earlier in the day or later in the afternoon to avoid harsh shadows on the face. This gives you more pleasing photos and then you can put the camera down and enjoy the life you are living. 🙂
  • If you are going take photos in the middle of a bright, sunny day, move your subject into the shade so that you can avoid those harsh shadows.
  • Be sure to go wide – take photos of the entire scene as well as the little details. One great way to do this is to zoom with your feet! You can move back and forward as you like to change your perspective. Don’t limit yourself to the range of the lens on your camera.
  • Remember to take photos as life is happening. While photos of your friends and family smiling at the camera are wonderful, it is just as lovely to have photos of people living life and unaware of the camera. You will capture many sweet moments following this tip.
  • Be sure to hand off the camera to someone so that you can be in some of the shots! You want to make sure you are documented as well. Even if you don’t like having your photo taken, your family will love it (and years from now you will likely love it as well!).

Most importantly, enjoy the process and have fun – your photos will reflect that!

Once you have your summer memories captured, you can then document those days with the great products from Gen’s shop at Pixels & Company! I will share a few of my favorite summer photos and how I scrapped them in an upcoming post so be sure to check back. In the meantime, go out and snap some great summer details! Happy Summer!

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Blending Black and White Photos

Hi! Carolyn Amson here to show you one of my current favourite techniques. That is how to blend black and white photos into white paper so they appear to be imprinted on the paper with the paper texture showing through. Here is a layout that I created today, where I used the technique on the background photo with the tree.


Here is a closeup of the tree. There is no extraction, just simple blending that takes minutes.


1. Firstly select your photo and place it on your favourite white textured background. (I used one by Karla Dudley from her Dad’s Day Paper Pack).  Photos with one colour backgrounds work best as you only need to get rid of one colour. I selected this photo of my daughter with our dog at the beach. You can see the sky is a brilliant blue.


2. The first step is to increase the contrast of the photo. I usually do this by selecting Image/Adjustments/Brightness Contrast. I then usually duplicate the photo and hide the bottom layer. (This is only done in case I ever want to start back at the original photo. I also always link duplicates so that I can use other techniques on another layer.) Next go to Image/Adjustments/Black and White. This is the fun part!

This following screen shows the default settings.


3. Now we get to play with coloured filters to make the background turn white. The sky here was blue so I pushed the cyan setting to the right which turned the sky white. I did not use blue as this also turned the water in the distance white. I then pulled the yellow back a little so as not to lose texture on my daughter and dog.

This may sound complicated but is easy. You just play with the settings until you get a black and white photo that looks OK.

Here are my final settings:


The paper line is still visible. Don’t worry. We now use blending.

4. The next step is to blend the black and white photo into the background. I usually blend linear burn at 90-100% but in this case it worked better with Darker Colour at 100%. Just experiment to see what works best for your photo.  The paper line should now disappear or nearly does. If you can still see part of the line, then I just use a watercolour brush to erase the edges as you can see in the following image.


5. The last thing I usually need to do is increase the brightness of the image as it often darkens when using the colour filters to turn the photo into black/white. So here it is, a coloured image printed as black/white onto white textured paper.


Now you just need to add elements for a striking page.

And yes, I do use this technique all the time 🙂

Here are some of my pages:















This is such an easy technique! Please link me up to any pages you create.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend. And to my friends in the States. Happy 4th July!