How to Make a Template your Own

I hope you are enjoying so far all the magic of goodness that is happening at Scrapaneers this month. So many great kits to work with. But I have to confess that cluster-heavy templates scare me a.lot.



When I saw this template my first reaction was not to  use it. While it is a gorgeous design, I was scared because I felt my style was so different. But, giving it a second thought, I realized that would go against something I believe about digital scrapping and the reason why I love it: we can change things and make them our own to conquer our design fears. So challenge accepted!



I’m a very artsy scrapbooker, I don’t do a lot of clustering, I let the blend and paints and overlays do the work. When I start a template like this, I first think about things I will definitely not be using.




As you can see I removed some elements to clean up the center of the layout and some paper stacks. I don’t do a lot of pattern paper stacks so I mainly wanted them as the base which the template has already 3 main papers.


I cleaned up and instead used a watercolor mask to post my main big picture with a color burn blend mode.




At this point I took a overall look and the dots that could be elements still bothered me I know I liked the position of the flower clusters but I don’t use flowers decided to  exchange them for something else.




I also used one of the journal cards and select the text and dragged to the layout and used a blend mode color burn to blend that with the white background paper as you can see in the right upper corner.





Next I started to substitute what was the flowers clusters before to stars which I think it goes well with a boy layout, stars are very meaningful to me in my scrapbook I use them a lot in my son’s layouts as a hidden message for him: that he is a superstar despite his disability.




I decided instead of my own journaling to use journaling strips which is a kind of embellishment that I use a lot in my layouts instead of 3D elements.




And this was my final layout




I put the strips more towards the bottom so I could place the title close to his face. I used a acrylic style from NBK Design.


I believe  that the main idea of the template still there but with less clusters. I was very happy that I could give my own twist. The thing about templates is that I can now try to come up with many different ways to use the same template, it really helps to give a  creative jump start.


Speaking of inspiration, Cheryl (Fiddle-Dee-Dee Designs) was kind enough to provide the layout that inspired her template:


Cheryl's Inspiration LO


And if you want to see her put this page together from scratch, you can watch her process in this video:



I hope you have fun using the template and The Magic of Beginnings Collection!


The Magic of Beginnings Giveaway


On to the next installment of the Scrapaneers December Giveaway – The Magic of Beginnings.


A big THANK YOU to all the amazing designers who contributed to this Mega Collection. The Magic of Beginnings is perfect for your holiday and December sequential projects, but it is about so much more than that. Think about plans and goals for the new year, starting a new stage of life, new relationships or simply the start of exciting new adventures. This collection is so big we could not fit it all into one preview, so here is glimpse at the collection in two parts (we couldn’t fit everything in the preview so know there’s MORE!):


Magic of Beginnings Collection


Magic of Beginnings Collection



Magic of Beginnings download links are no longer available.


Don’t forget to check back on Friday, December 9 for the next set of downloads, and a fun technique tutorial from Lisa.





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  • Lynn Goshert December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Thanks so much for today’s kit & template!

  • flowersgal December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Love today’s tutorial on making a template your own. I do this all the time, most often simplifying and removing lots of the clusters of elements and rarely using the flowers which seem so prevalent in templates.

    Thanks also for the kit and template. It will be fun making this one my own.

  • time2smile December 7, 2016   Reply →

    This is certainly a fun journey through the month! Thank you for all the time and effort you all have put into this. Every new post is a treat and the collection is inspiring!

  • Pam K December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you to Miki and Cheryl for their lovely contributions to this awesome mega! Happy Holidays!

  • Yobeth Puckett December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Great tutorial, Jana! I know this will be helpful to so many that struggle with how to make a template their own. You really nailed it.

  • Rae December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you! I enjoyed your tutorial!

  • Sandra December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Thanks so very much! These are wonderful and I am loving the tutorials!

  • sherry pennington December 7, 2016   Reply →

    You ladies all ROCK !!!!! Thank you so much for all the beautiful goodies 🙂

  • missbecki December 7, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you so much, and Merry Christmas! 🙂

  • Squirrely December 8, 2016   Reply →

    This template is AMAZING, love the kit too so much. TYTYTY all. 🙂

  • Katie December 8, 2016   Reply →

    Fantastic kit, thanks for your generosity !

  • Mary Merrifield December 8, 2016   Reply →

    The kit and template are wonderful gifts. I do love the tutorials. Thank you.

  • Mary December 9, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you so much for sharing your talent.

  • Blackthorne December 9, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you so much _ Both the kit and template are amazing !

  • MARTHA ALVAREZ December 9, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you very much and have a Merry Chrismas!

  • Jennifer Moore December 9, 2016   Reply →

    What a wonderful way to switch up the template. I like to make templates my own too. Thank you!

  • R December 10, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you 🙂

  • Marie H. December 10, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you so much for the kit and the template and the tutorial. The tutorial on adapting a template was extremely interesting to me. I have been collecting digital material for about three years and actually have had Photoshop Elements 8 and My Digital Studio by Stampin’ Up during that time frame. I just upgraded to Elements 15, but I have never made the first page. But that is going to change because I am determined to learn how to do digital scrapbooking for myself. Thank you again for all three gifts. Marie H.

  • willimena December 10, 2016   Reply →

    Thankyou for the great template and kit. This is a great tutorial – I love templates but always remove so many elements – it’s good to see someone else’s take on it. Thanks!

  • N. Lambert December 16, 2016   Reply →

    Super tutorial and amazing temp and kit! Thank you so much!

  • KimR. December 18, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you very much!

  • Lis December 27, 2016   Reply →

    Thank you so much for the great template and kit!

  • Shirley Kimbrough January 8, 2017   Reply →

    My thanks for the awesome tutorials and beginnings kit. Happy New Year. Hugs, 🙂

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