The goal for this month’s SCAL Club get-together is to learn more about using fonts to create cut embellishments using Sure Cuts A Lot. SCAL works with any True Type Font (TTF) and there are tens of thousands of free font downloads on the internet. With so many fonts to choose from, it’s hard to find all the gems and keep them in mind. So, for this month’s club get-together, our goal is to provide each club participant with a “swatch book” of fun fonts.
In a nutshell, each participant will be assigned a letter. Each participant must find a free font that starts with that letter and then create a swatch using that font. Each person will create enough swatches to trade with everyone involved, so, by the end of the day, we’ll all have a pile of fun font swatches. I’m providing each participant with a chipboard swatch book so you can build a nice “catalog” of swatches.The book measures about 3″ x 8″ (including the tabs) and has three tabbed pages. This month we’ll focus on fonts that cut well. In future months, we can consider doing dingbats (fonts that represent images rather than letters), small embellishments or even fonts that draw well with markers! The possibilities are endless!
If you can’t attend in person, you can still participate!! You’ll just have to send me your swatches in postal mail so they arrive at my door before 4/28/10. I’ll take them with me that evening, do all the trading for you, and send you back all the other swatches via postal mail! You’ll also get the other materials I distribute during the Club, including a list of my favorite font websites and fonts, and fonts that match Cricut cartridges. If you are near Columbus, Ohio, I encourage you to participate in person. We’ll be meeting at 7PM on Wednesday, April 24 at MoJo Scrapbooks in Westerville. You must call MoJo to reserve your place.
To participate remote, just order the SCAL Club Fonts item from my online store. The fee for this month’s club get-together is $20 for in-person participants and $24.95 for remote folks—that covers my time to coordinate everyone’s participation, the font resources I distribute, the swatch books, etc. Here are the details so you can see exactly how this will work.
|1. Once you register for the Club, you’ll be assigned a letter. I’m participating too, so I gave myself the letter “P.”|
|2. Now the fun part! Go to web and search for free true type fonts that begin with the letter the letter you were assigned. There’s a list of some of my favorite font websites on the right of this page. I ended up using www.dafont.com, clicked on the letter P, scrolled through all the fonts, and selected “Pad Thai.” Make a note of the name of the font and site where you got it. You’ll need that to complete your swatch.|
|3. Download the font and install it on your PC. For example, if you are using a Windows computer, download the font to a folder or your desktop. It will most likely be a “zip” file. Double click on the zip file and “extract” the contents into a folder or on your desktop. You’ll probably end up with a readme file (something that ends in .txt and usually explains the copyright information about the font) and the actual font file (which will end in .ttf). Under your Start menu, select Control Panel and then Fonts and you’ll get a window that shows all the fonts loaded on your computer. Just drag the ttf file you just extracted into that window and it will install the font. Once installed, you can use it with Sure Cuts a Lot.|
|4. Design a swatch that measures 2.5″ tall and 8″ wide using the font. Start by thinking of a word or phrase that gives you the “feeling” of the font. In my case, I liked the name of the font, “Pad Thai.” I thought about using “Thailand” or “The Far East,” but since we love Thai food, I figured I would just use “Pad Thai.” From there, design your swatch. Be sure to include the name of the font and the source website in your creation. In my case, I made a very small tag using a punch and put the name of the font and the website on the tag. You could write the name/website on your creation or put it on a tag or hide it in a pocket – any method is OK. You can embellish your creation as much or as little as you like. Shadow it. Add a die cut. Stamp on it. Add glitter. Emboss it. Bling it up with rhinestones. The focus is the font, so make the word/phrase fairly large. The only limit is your creativity and time.I used heavy patterned cardstock as the base of my swatch. I plan on adhering the swatches I get when I trade back-to-back (so each one is double-sided), punching three holes in each one, and putting them under the first tab of my swatch book. Of course, I’ll need to decorate the cover of the swatch book, too, at some point.I choose colors that remind me of Thailand – orange, green and brown. I also know many orchids come from Thailand, so I included an orchid I cut (with SCAL!) as an embellishment. I used a glitter pen and pastel chalks to add dimension to the orchid. I sprayed the flower with glimmer mist to add some “shiny spots” and I added bling (gold foil paper along the bottom and a rhinestone to dot the “i”).If you can try to avoid putting too much of your design along the bottom or top 1/4″, that would be great. That way people who punch holes in the swatches to use them in the swatch book won’t be punching out|
critical parts of your design. Here’s my finished swatch.
|5. Make 20 copies of your swatch. That way, you’ll keep one for yourself and trade one with the other 15 people participating in the club.|
I had a blast putting together my swatch. I found about 15 great fonts that start with the letter “P.” And making 20 copies of the swatch sounds bad, but it was a breeze!! I used a paper trimmer to cut my 2.5″ x 8″ strips (and you can get five strips from each sheet of 12×12 paper!). I used a small scrap to cut out my orchid flowers and Christmas wrapping paper for my gold strip!
Here are the letter assignments:
|C||Beth R.||P||Joe R.|
|D||Aline D.||Q||Carole L.|
|F||Nicole S.||S||Mary C. K.|
|J||Joe R.||W||Eunice R.|
|L||Marilyn K.||Y||Joe R.|
|M||Amy D., Beverly M.||Z||Therese C.|