Category Archives: tips and tricks


So, what was originally meant to be a weekly tips and tricks feature of my blog has been so much less than that…life just got busy!! Between part-time teaching, a University online course and getting my personal business off the ground it’s been BUSY!! However, tips and tricks are important and I could tell many of you liked these posts, so I want to keep posting them every once in a while.

So, the next feature I want to highlight is the IMPORT PAGE tool. If you’ve never used it before you’re going to LOVE it! This tool allows you to import all the features from any project into a different project. Make sense? Probably not. ūüôā So let me explain with an example.

On Wednesday I created the canvas below as part of a design challenge with Club HM on Facebook…a challenge which I won…yipee and $20 of FREE product for me!! For the challenge I had to create a canvas, but in the end I wanted my creation but couldn’t afford the price of the actual canvas at this moment.

So, what did I do?

insane courage(#2521062)-F

What I did was I used the IMPORT PAGE feature to turn this 16″ x 20″¬†canvas into an 8 1/2″ x 11″ scrapbook page that would fit into an 8×10 picture frame.

Here are the steps I took.

1. I opened a new blank 8 1/2 x 11 scrapbook project in an edit screen.

2. At the bottom of my screen I clicked on the tab MY PROJECTS.


3. At this point I have 3 possible locations to look in: CURRENT PROJECT, UNFINISHED PROJECT & COMPLETED PROJECTS. Since this was a CLUB HM challenge entry it was in my COMPLETED PROJECTS so this is the folder I selected.


4. What opens up next is a list of all the projects you have in that folder (as you can see I have MANY projects – no, I haven’t bought all of them ūüôā ). What I’m looking for is the name of the project I want to import, in this case “INSANE COURAGE”.


5. Once I select the project I want the pages in that project will appear as a list. In this case “INSANE COURAGE”, being a canvas, only has one page – the first page (F). In a storybook you could anywhere from 23-101 pages (including the front and back cover).


6. I now need to select the page that I want to import – in this case the front page (F) – and all the elements on that page will appear to the right of the drop down menu. This is also a great place to locate elements from a previous project that you want to add to a new one as you can simply drag and drop them from this screen onto any project. You can also find out what collection they are in by double clicking on the item which will open up an elarged preview and will give you the option to open up the¬†collection. We don’t need to that for this project as we will be importing all of the items all at once. In the next couple of steps.







7. Next click on IMPORT PAGE.







8. Your screen will go black and the following pop-up screen will appear. Click on  YES IMPORT THIS PAGE. The two important things to note are that this will replace any items you currently have on the page and CANNOT be undone.


9. STUDIO will automatically import all elements from my original project into this new project, but, as you can see they are still in their original size and will need resizing Рthey elements go right off the screen. The size of my scrapbook page is the section that can be seen clearly (the box around the 2). I had to use the zoom in as far as I could in order to get this view. The zoom keys are in the centre at the top of the editing frame right below the HERITAGE MAKERS logo (see second image below).



10. The first step is to SELECT ALL the elements so we can resize everything all at once. To do this go to the EDIT menu at the top left and click on SELECT ALL. The items will appear as above – with a green border around all the objects together.


11. Now we can use the green boxes on the corners of the green frame to resize all the objects. To keep all the proportions the same (and not squish or stretch any elements) hold down the SHIFT key as you drag the boxes diagonally towards the middle.





13. Only one step remains and that is to resize the black background outside of the grey outline so that I can ensure it cover the whole page. This time I only want to resize the background and so I will only click on it and resize it using the corner squares.


AND VOILA!! I’m all done!!insane courage(#2521062)- SCRAP PAGE


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Weeding…my photos!!


Have you been into your Heritage Makers¬†account this week? Have you looked at your MY PHOTOS section? If you have then you’ve probably noticed it looks a bit different. It’s even easier now to keep track of your photos and manage your albums in your account.

I think HM said it best when they posted that. “The new features make it easy to view, organize and share your photos and albums, and stay aware of your storage usage. We encourage you to streamline, simplify and optimize your creative Studio experience by actively managing your photos.”

So, this week I’ve spent some time going through my album and deleting some of my unused photos – photos that I didn’t include in my projects (published or unpublished). It’s so easy to do! Simply choose an album, click on the SHOW USAGE box, and then filter the photo by UNUSED IMAGES. Then just delete the¬†ones you know you don’t want to keep.

Of course there are some unused images that I still might use in future projects so I didn’t want to delete all of them. However I also had a ton of junky photos saved that I knew I’d never use – so those I deleted.

So, join me and tidy up your photos in your account. Add it to your projects for the summer. You won’t regret it!


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Business cards are SO small that it can be difficult to design them knowing exactly how they will turn out in the end. However, Heritage Makers has put out some KEY TIPS to making sure that your business cards turn out JUST RIGHT:

Business Cards–Design Guidelines

Bleed, Safe Area and Crop Marks explained. . .

Safe Area. Imagine an area about 1/8-inch inside the bleed area (for demonstration purposes here, we’ve designated it with dotted lines). Make sure any text or key art elements are within the safe area, otherwise they could get cut off.
Crop Marks/Trim.
This is where we aim to cut your cards.
Bleed Area. We cut the bleed area off your cards to avoid white strips on the edge. Make sure any images or colors fill this area.

TIP #1 Make sure your text and important details are inside the safe area, otherwise they may get cut off.

TIP #2 Make sure your images/colors/background art extends through the FULL bleed. Otherwise, your cards might have ugly white areas.

TIP #3 Sadly, the use of borders can result in lopsided cards, and we wouldn’t want that

‚ÄĒso avoid them where possible.

Just remember these handy tips and you’ll be HAPPY with all the business cards you publish with Heritage Makers.


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Studio Tip and Tricks #3: Aligning

This simple project was easily made using the alignment tools on the LAYOUT menu. It’s a quick and easy way to perfectly centre objects on the page or with each other; to line up objects with each other; to evenly space out objects.

READ ON to find out just how easy it is and how they work.

TAKE THE POLL AT THE END and tell me what you think of this post.

The align and distribute tools are¬†found at the bottom of the LAYOUT TOOLS menu.¬†We will be focusing on the 6 align buttons and the 3 “TO”¬†buttons that you find underneath. We’ll start by describing what each of these 9 buttons does and then go through how I used them to create the project featured above.


STEP ONE: Decide TO what you would like the programs to align the objects you choose.

ALIGN TO GROUP: This will line up all the objects you select to one another.

ALIGN TO FIRST ITEM: This will line up all the objects you select to the position of the very first object you chose.

ALIGN TO PAGE: This will line up all the objects you select in relation to the page as a whole.

STEP TWO: Decide what kind of alignment you would like to happen.

ALIGN LEFT: Will shift objects you select so that the left edges are perfectly lined up.

ALIGN CENTRE VERTICALLY: Will shift objects you select so that they are centered with each other vertically.

ALIGN RIGHT:  Will shift objects you select so that the right edges are perfectly lined up.

ALIGN TOP: Will shift objects you select so that the top edges are perfectly lined up.

ALIGN CENTRE HORIZONTALLY: Will shift objects you select so that they are centered with each other horizontally.

ALIGN BOTTOM: Will shift objects you select so that the bottom edges are perfectly lined up.


STEP ONE: Centering the second background on top of the first.

We’ve placed the main background on our¬†page and we would like the second smaller square perfectly centered on¬†top.

First we select align TO PAGE

Then we select our smaller background and choose ALIGN CENTRE VERTICALLY.

Next we select ALIGN CENTRE HORIZONTALLY. The result is a perfectly centred page

STEP TWO: Creating a perfect grid of smaller squares for the photos and quotes.

I started by positioning one of the squares where I wanted it to be on the larger background using the ruler grid (VIEW – RULER- SHOW RULER). I used the position of this square to help me position the other 3.

I used the ALIGN TO FIRST ITEM to make this happen.

First I aligned the bottom edges of the bottom two squares. KEY ACTION: the key here is to select the object that is in the correct position first, then hold down the shift key and select all other object you want to align to the first one. Here I selected the bottom left square first, then the bottom right one.

Next choose the ALIGN BOTTOM button and the right square is shifted to line up perfectly with the left square along the bottom edge.

Next¬†we will line up the two right squares along their right¬†edges. Again we’ll select the bottom¬†square first and then the top square so that they are being aligned according to the position of the bottom square.

Next choose the ALIGN RIGHT button to shift the top square to the right to perfectly line up with the bottom square.

Now I aligned the two left squares Рagain selecting the bottom square first and then the top one.

Then I chose the align left button which shifted the top square a little to the right so they were perfectly lined up.

Next I am going to align the top two boxes horizontally to each other which means I am going to choose ALIGN TO GROUP.

This time it doesn’t matter which box I select first and they are being aligned to each other

As you can see the program has shifted both boxes so that they are now lined up together around their centre axis. My boxes are now all perfectly lined up in a grid.

I continued to use the alignment tools to centre my photos on the smaller stripped boxes, selecting the stripped backgrounds first and then my photo – ALIGN TO FIRST TIME/ALIGN VERTICAL/ALIGN HORIZONTAL.

I also used the alignment tools to line up my letter for Bob and Dorothy – make sure they were all perfectly aligned along their bottom edges. I places my B and my D where I wanted them first and then selected all my letters, ALIGN TO FIRST ITEM, ALIGN BOTTOM.

I highly recommend just playing around with these tools until they become very familiar to you. Once you get the hang of them they are SUPER handy when creating pages from scratch or when you’ve modified a template and need to realign objects.


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Tips and Tricks #2: Cropping photos

CROPPING –¬† one of the essential skills for any scrapbooker. But, unlike paper scrapbooking where you get ONE try at cropping your photo (once you’ve cut there’s not going back), with digital publishing you can try a million and one different configurations until you find the right one.

So, how do you crop a photo in Heritage Makers STUDIO? There are essentially 2 ways:

A. . CROPPING AN UNLOCKED PHOTO: You know a photo is unlocked when the border around the photo is green when you click on it.

1. Click on the photo and then go to the TOOLS tab on the toolbox menu. 

2. Choose CROP and a blue border will appear on your photo:

3. Drag the blue border lines to wherever you would like to crop your photo. What is inside the blue box is what you will keep. When you’re satisfied choose DONE and see your photo cropped.

4. Need to make a change? Simply use the ADJUST button in the TOOLS menu of the toolbox (only shows up if the photo has already been cropped). To get rid of the crop and go back to the original menu choose REMOVE.

B.CROPPING A LOCKED PHOTO: When a photo is locked you cannot change the overall shape of the photo, but you can zoom in or out, rotate and adjust the how the photo is centered in the frame. You will know the photo is locked when it has a thick red border around the outside like the one below:

1. Select the photo you want to crop and choose the TOOLS menu in the toolbox – same as step 1 above.

2. Choose ADJUST.

3. To zoom in and out use the SCALE slider controls.  To rotate the photo use the ROTATIONS slider controls. For more precise control use the up and down arrows.

4. Click on the photo, hold the mouse down and drag the photo around to change how the photo is centered in its frame.

5. Choose DONE on the TOOLS menu and see your finished crop. If you are not satisfied simply go back into the TOOLS menu and make so more adjustments.


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Weekly Tips and Tricks – Post #1: Copy formatting

Here’s the plan – every week on Sunday I hope to post another tips and/or trick to using Heritage Maker’s STUDIO program. These tips and tricks are key to using the program efficiently and having it do the work for you…reducing the time you spend creating projects.

Today’s Tip: How to copy formatting (colour, rounded corners, sepia/black and white, drop box, border) to multiple elements on a page (or several pages)

1. Select one element on your page and put all the formatting on it that you wish it to have from the toolbox menu:

2. Copy the element – right click and copy;

use the button at the top right hand corner of the editing page;

or use EDIT and COPY.


3. Select all the other elements on the page that you wish to share this same formatting by holding down the SHIFT key while selecting them. This will group the obejcts together and place a border around them all Рgreen (if items are all unlocked) or red (if items are locked).

4. Go to EDIT – PASTE SPECIAL – PASTE FORMAT. This will copy all formatting from the first element onto all other objects you’ve selected.

Stay tuned next week for POST #2 next week.

Happy publishing!!


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Studio Tips and Tricks – Basic 1

Had our first digi-crop last week. What fun it was to learn our way around Studio together and work on our projects together. We focused on some basic Studio skills. Here are a couple of important tips and tricks:



You may notice that when you stretch or shrink a photo, embellishment, background, or other art work that is unlocked, the colour of the border around it might change. These colours are indications of the quality of photo resolution when your project is printed. Here’s what they mean:

green border = all is well. Item will print clearly.

yellow border = careful. You are starting to lose some resolution and it will not be as clear.

orange border = CAUTION! This item will not print clearly and will be somewhat blurry.

red border = WARNING! This item has lost significant resolution and will be significantly blurry.


– To easily replace a photo, background or embellishment when items are locked (thick red border), simply select the item and drag the new one until your cursor is overtop of the box that says “Drag photo here to swap”. (If¬†box doesn’t show up, simply drag and drop while holding down¬†the Ctrl key.)

– To easily replace a photo, background or embellishment when items are unlocked (green border), simply select the item, hold down the Ctrl key¬†and drag the new one until your cursor is overtop of the item being replaced (the “Drag photo here to swap” box might also appear).


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