DIY: Address Envelopes with the Silhouette Cameo

Not a calligrapher? Neither am I, so when I discovered Sketch Pens for use with the Silhouette Cameo I got very excited! You can use basically any font to create beautiful envelopes. They come in a variety of colors, I used bronze on my Christmas cards but gold is used in this example. I can’t wait to try these metallics out on some dark envelopes!

DIY: Addressing Envelopes with the Silhouette Cameo | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

To start, make an artboard in Silhouette Studio that’s the size of your envelope. My envelope was 5.25″ by 7.25″. Then, go ahead and style the address how you’d like. You can use whatever fonts you’ve downloaded to your computer. (If you’re doing this and making money off of it, make sure your fonts are free for commercial use.) You can also add graphic elements like flowers, vines or swirls. I chose to keep my envelope pretty simple this time around.

DIY: Addressing Envelopes with the Silhouette Cameo | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

Now it’s time to get your Silhouette set up. Remove the black blade from the holder and replace with a sketch pen. Make sure you tighten the gripper and you’re good to go! Add the envelope to your mat with the side you want drawn on face up. Then simply select the sketch pen option instead of a blade and send to Silhouette!

DIY: Addressing Envelopes with the Silhouette Cameo | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

DIY: Addressing Envelopes with the Silhouette Cameo | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

Ta-dah! You have a very professional envelope with great style! The sketch pens come in a wide variety of colors and finishes including metallic and glitter. I can’t wait to play around with these some more! 

Giving this one a try? Be sure to show me your envelopes! Tag me @emilylaynedesigns!

My Christmas Cards | 2015

Can you believe Christmas is almost here? I know I say this every year, but this year has really flown by. It seems like the older I get, the faster time goes. A lot has happened this past year, including a new city, new job and new apartment. I knew I wanted to celebrate the journey DJ and I have gone through and design our own holiday card.

My Christmas Cards | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs |

A great friend took our photo in a local park and I edited it to make it look warm and cozy! This is probably one of my favorite photos of DJ and I! I had one printed as well and put it in our bedroom.

Christmas Cards 2015 | Emily Layne Designs | Blog
Christmas Cards | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

I really love that we decided to venture away from a standard rectangular card and did an antique die-cut! It really made a huge difference in the card!

I had our return address printed on the flap of the envelope in matching colors but I used my Silhouette Cameo to address the envelope. There will be a blog post up soon explaining exactly how I did it!

Christmas Cards 2015 | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

 

Do you send out Christmas cards? What’s your favorite holiday memory?

When do I mail out my wedding invitations?

When do I mail my wedding invitations? | Emily Layne Designs | Blog

So much time and energy is spent into making your wedding invitation suite is perfect. It needs to reflect who you are as a couple, the feel of the ceremony, and not break the bank. There’s so much time going into planning the actual look of the invitations, some people don’t get the answer to the question, “When do I mail out my invitations?”. 

Usually your invitation suite should go out 6-8 weeks before the wedding. This gives your friends and family plenty of notice. If you’re having a destination wedding, 10 weeks is the magic number. Going along with the destination scenario, a save the date is a good idea so guests can arrange travel plans. If you’re having your ceremony near your home, but are expecting folks from out town, you may also want to send save the dates.

Going along with save the dates, general rule of thumb is 6-8 months before the wedding. If you’re having your wedding during a busy time of the year like over the 4th of July holiday, Christmas time, or Memorial Day weekend, you may want to send them out earlier so, 9 or 10 months.

Another timing issue to consider is what your return date should be on the RSVPs. This date should be 2 to 3 weeks before the wedding. If you know you’ll need a head count sooner for catering or a seating chart, go ahead and make it 3 weeks out. A fair warning, people forget to RSVP. If you don’t hear back one week out from the big day, give them a call.

Lastly, remember it does take time to plan, design, and print your dream suite. Always meet with your designer sooner rather than later. Choosing your invitation package early will save you time, money and serious headache!

What other questions do you have about invitations suites? I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions! Leave me a comment down below!

 

September Favorites | 2015

September was a great month! I moved into a new apartment, started a new job and turned 23! Even though September was great, I’m definitely ready for October! With October comes fall festivals, boots, hot chocolate and most importantly, Halloween! Here’s some of my favorite things from this past month:

1. How to Get Away with Murder

I began watching this show on a whim when it popped up on my Netflix feed. I decided to watch the first episode and four episodes later, I was hooked. I just finished the first season and have started on the second! The second season just premiered last week so now’s a perfect time catch up! The whole plot is full of twists and turns and fits perfectly with this spooky and creepy time of year!

2. My new haircut

I’ve been wanting to cut my hair for probably over a year but just never got around to it. I’ve had my hair long for pretty much my entire life and even though my hair’s not “short” now, it’s definitely shorter than I’ve ever had it before! I love it though! It’s still long enough to throw up in a little ponytail, it looks great straight or with loose curls. I’m so glad I decided to bite the bullet and cut it off!

September Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog
September Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

3. Apple and Fruit Dip

I recently saw on Pinterest a super simple “recipe” for fruit dip. I don’t even really call it a recipe because it’s only two ingredients. Take one whole container of Cool Whip (I use fat free) and 1 cup or 8 ounces of you favorite flavor of yogurt. I just use good ol’ strawberry. Mix it up and you’re done! I’ve been packing this in my lunch for work and eating it as a sweet treat in the evening. Super easy, inexpensive and delicious!

4. Ross

With my new job came some new clothes. I bought a few dresses recently and they’re great! If you’re looking for a new dress, look no further than Ross. Their prices are awesome and they even carry some really expensive brands like Calvin Klein. I bought two shift dresses for only $26.00!

September Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

September Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

I can’t wait to see what October brings; I have a feeling it’s going to be a really great month! What have you been enjoying in September?

What’s “bleed”?

What's Bleed? | Emily Layne Designs Blog

I run into this problem a lot. If you’re not in the printing world, you probably don’t know what bleed is.  I didn’t know what it was until I went to college and started my printing classes. I do think it’s important to explain though, especially if you’re creating your own artwork for invitations, greeting cards, flyers, or really any printed material. Even if you’re just shopping around and ordering printed products, it’s important to know some basic terminology.

Bleed is the outside area of the page where the artwork goes over the edge of the paper. So, why is this needed? Say you’re creating an invitation that has a red background on the entire sheet. Because the color goes all the way to the edge of the paper, you’ll need anywhere between 0.25″ and 0.125″ bleed on all four sides. The diagram below shows a 1/8″ bleed using the red line around the document.

What's bleed? | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Now, the next concept usually doesn’t register with people initially purely because we’re so used to pressing print on our home computer and spitting out a document or picture. Professional printing is much, much different. Let’s use our full bleed, red background invitation example. When a piece of paper goes through a printer or a printing press, the machine has to grip on to the paper to apply the ink. Because of this, ink cannot be placed in that area. So, to get a sheet of paper to have full color, you have to print on a larger sheet and trim it down.

So, if we have a 5″ x 7″ invitation with a full bleed red background, we’re probably going to print it on a 8.5″ x 11″ sheet with 2 invitations per sheet. (Laying out files on a larger sheet is called imposition and we’ll cover that topic another day!) Now you can print your invitations with 0.125″ bleed, trim it down and have a full color card!

Having bleed run off the sheet helps when trimming so you don’t have any white edges. Even though commercial cutting equipment can be very exact, it’s not perfect and having tiny white edges around your artwork is not pretty!

Keep this concept in mind when ordering any products you have to print yourself. Make sure your graphic designer ALWAYS sends you files with bleed if the artwork goes all the way to the edge of the paper! This will save you a ton of time and headache!

Are you interested in more graphic design concepts? Let me know in the comments below!

 

August Favorites | 2015

1. Prison Break

I used to watch this show when I was in middle school when it first premiered. I started during season 3 and then never finished the series so my boyfriend and I decided to watch from the beginning. We’re now in the middle of season 2 and we’re hooked. Even though some of the scenarios don’t make sense, it’s a very suspenseful show full of drama! I’m also very excited that they’re bringing it back!

2. Halloween Washi Tape

I found some super cute halloween washi tape at Michael’s and Walmart and I CANNOT wait to use it in my October spreads in my new planner (once it arrives of course!).

August Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog
August Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

3. Kaitlin Mekel

I found Katilin’s channel on YouTube and I’m IN LOVE with her videos. She has great beauty tutorials and I loved watching her dorm tour. She also has a thick southern accent like me! Definitely go check her out!

4. Red Bowl Asian Bistro

Right down the road from our old apartment was Red Bowl Asian Bristo. They make a fabulous, gluten free, chicken fried rice. It’s so delicious. I really hope there’s a Red Bowl near our new apartment in Charlotte!

5. Halloween Paper Straws

I found the cutest halloween paper straws at Dollar Tree of all places! I bought 3 different patterns but they have a lot more! I think they look really cute on the bar cart and on my kitchen island. They’re a very inexpensive way to add some festiveness and color!

August Favorites | 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

 

What were you loving in August? Are you excited for Halloween? Let me know in the comments below!

Life Update | September 2015

Life Update | September 2015 | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Hey y’all! I know, long time no blog post. I’m actually here to explain where I’ve been the last few weeks!

Recently I just found out that I got a new job in Charlotte so I’m in the midst of moving from Burlington to the Queen cit I can’t wait to start a new journey with a new job, new apartment and new city!

With that being said, my blog posts have quite frankly, disappeared. This will all change once I move and get settled in. I’m so excited to bring some new DIY and decor posts related to my apartment! I’ve also got some great educational graphic design posts lined up too! 

Hang in there with me and be sure to check back in for new content soon!

Bathroom Storage & Hacks

Bathroom Storage & Hacks | Emily Layne Designs Blog

 

I’ve had a small bathroom basically my entire life. My bathroom growing up at home was tiny, especially when sharing it with my sister. Then there were dorm and apartment bathrooms, only one of those I actually had all to myself. The rest of the time I’ve been sharing them with either a roommate or my boyfriend. My bathroom currently really lacks in the storage department. I’ve always had a vanity cabinet, never one with drawers like this one. I honestly don’t like it at all. With a cabinet, you can get stacking bins and baskets and increase your storage. With a drawer, you’re stuck. But, I make it work by using simple organizers from the Dollar Tree. The very top drawer keeps things that we use on a daily basis like toothpaste, q-tips, floos, hair ties, tweezers, etc.

Bathroom Storage & Hacks | Emily Layne Designs Blog

The next problem I had was where to keep our towels. I’m a little bit of a diva so I use two towels when getting out of the shower and then my boyfriend has one for himself. The apartment came with a towel bar but I really like keeping decorative towels out, plus, the towel bar won’t hold three towels. I went on the hunt for some kind of storage option where we could hang our towels to dry. I found these amazing hooks in the closet section at Lowes for only $2 a piece! They fit perfectly on the shower rod and I think it looks pretty to have out white towels hanging in front of the shower curtain. Another tip if you’re running low on space is to use Command strips. I put one on the back of the door for DJ’s robe.

Bathroom Storage & Hacks | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Bathroom Storage & Hacks | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Another necessity I have in our bathroom is our toilet paper holder. This little gadget hangs right on the side of the toilet so it doesn’t take up floor space or get in the way. Even though it’s only my boyfriend and I using this bathroom, I feel that our stuff could easily take over the bathroom! With these simple little gadgets we keep our bathroom neat and clutter free!

What gizmos and gadgets do you use to keep your bathroom organized?

Erica | Senior Portraits

Over the weekend I had the pleasure of photographing my sister for her senior portraits. First of all, can I just say, HOW IS SHE ALREADY A SENIOR?!? Basically, I’m getting old. Even though I can’t believe she’ll be graduating high school next year, I can’t wait for her to start this new chapter in her life.

Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog
Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog
 

She’s already starting applying for college and I can’t wait to see which school she chooses! I also can’t wait for her to meet her future roommate and the most fun part, decorating her dorm room! I know there will be several shopping trips next summer!

We had a beautiful shoot at Elon University, where I went to graduate school. I knew the location would be perfect! There’s beautiful landscaping and lots of masonry work. I love how the pictures turned out and am so excited to later take her pictures in her cap and gown and make her announcements…I know the year will fly by!

Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog
Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog
Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog
Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Erica, I wish you all the best this year. Have lots of fun, learn lots, and cherish the memories. You’re going to go and do great things with your life and I can’t wait to see what’s in store for you! I love you sis!

Erica | Senior Portraits | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Back to College: “School Supplies”

Back to College: School Supplies | Emily Layne Designs Blog

Can you believe the summer is winding down? With that, students are going back to school. If you’re going off to college this year, here’s a list of some school supplies you’ll need for your first semester! These I consider as most important! Let’s start the list, shall we?

1. Laptop

This computer will become YOUR LIFE at college, trust me! You’ll type papers, watch lectures, watch Netflix, Skype with friends back home, shop and so much more on this device. That being said, it’s important to maybe splurge a little and make sure you get a great computer. Personally, I got a Macbook Pro when I started college. It was expensive but it still works and I still put it to good use 5 years later. It’s a bit slow but is still in great condition! No matter what computer you get, I highly recommend that you get more RAM. This will increase the speed of your computer especially when you’re running several applications at one time. I recently purchased an iMac with 32GB and it’s lightening fast. If you do ONE THING, go for the RAM.

2. Backpack

Next on the list as another essential is a backpack. I know a lot of people might use a tote bag but I really think a backpack is the way to go. Get one with a laptop sleeve, plenty of padding, some smaller pockets for extra pencils and you’re good to go! I also highly recommend getting a rain cover also. Even if your backpack is “water-resistant” it’s probably not “waterproof” and there’s nothing worse than getting to class and all your books are soaking wet. Another thing, throw a good umbrella in your backpack too!

3. Planner

You guys know I had to include a planner in this list! There are so many great planner options out there, find one that suits your needs and showcases your style! I really enjoyed the Plum Paper Student Planner while in graduate school but if I could do it all over I would get the Family Planner version. It still splits up the days into a grid but doesn’t have the huge class subject boxes that take up so much room! 

4. Post Its

In college, I used post its everywhere: in my planner, in my textbooks, around the dorm leaving little notes for my roommate, literally everywhere. Make sure you have plenty of fun colors!

5. Highlighters

Another college staple, you will use so many highlighters when studying, reviewing papers and marking things in your planner. Again, have lots of fun colors!

6. Headphones

I cannot express how important a good pair of headphones are while in college. You’ll use them when your roommate is loud, you’re in the library and need music, walking to class and so much more. Go ahead and invest in a nice pair and take care of them. If you do, they’ll probably last you all four years. I highly recommend the Razer Kraken headphones. Yes, I know they’re technically gaming headphones they have a lot of different colors, they’re comfortable and they sound awesome! Plus they’re not crazy expensive!

7. Flash Drive

Four words: BACK UP YOUR FILES! Whether you back your files up on an external hard drive/flash drive or virtually through Dropbox or Google Drive, make sure you do so! It’s not fun pulling an all nighter rewriting a paper because it got deleted and it’s due the next day. Not fun at all.

8. Lap Desk

There will be so many times you’ll want to do homework in bed and not at your desk. Also, your laptop will tend to get hot on your lap so buying a lap desk is a good idea. Not only will you use this item for homework, you can eat on it too! Just consider it an extra little table in your dorm!

9. Printer

A lot of schools offer printing on campus for a small fee or even free but let’s be honest, it’s a hassle to travel all the way to the library, swipe your student card, then the printer doesn’t work or only prints half…you get the idea. It’s very convenient to have a printer right in your room. It doesn’t have to be fancy a small black-ink printer will do nicely!

10. Stamps

A small little thing that people often forget. Sure the post office on campus sales them but how many times do you have cash on you? Just pick up a book and keep them with your important documents in your room. They’ll come in handy!