<< The little yellow dress that started it all!
Hi there! Welcome to my world!
I've been "PaperSouls" since 1996 (AOL days! <3). I've had the domain since the early 2000's (I originally owned it in the late 90's, but wound up letting it go for a few years... thank goodness I was able to get it again!). I didn't do much with it until around 2009 (other than fan sites), as I didn't start creating cards until around 2008. I find it funny how fitting the name really became, after all those years!
Over the years I've managed to obtain "PaperSouls" on most social media platforms (like Facebook and Twitter) but if you can't find me, chances are I'm "PapersPlace" (Etsy, Instagram, etc.). I'm not saying I was the creative one who first came up with the name, lol, but I never had a problem obtaining it until the past few years! I'm very glad I decided to hold on to my domain as the name has become very special to me.
I purchased my first die cutting machine, a Silhouette SD, in 2008 and my first project was a mother's day card - and here we are 15 yrs later! The little yellow dress is what started it all. I've learned a lot, and everyday I'm learning something new. Occasionally, my daughter helps with the graphics. She is an amazing young artist and I hope to use her art in future products.
What makes me different? I ask myself this question every day. I don't know the answer to that, but, know what I like to do? I like when I get an idea, or someone gives me an idea, and I'm able to bring it to life. I like the challenge of that. I only wish I had more hands!
I do have a process! I create everything on my computer first (using Silhouette Studio), then when I think everything is good to go, I take it to my workstation and the fun begins. If you send me an idea, it might take a few days for me to bring your vision to paper. The digital creation part of it all is the most time consuming. Yes, I use a die cutting machine (mainly the Silhouette Cameo 3 and the Silhouette Curio), a printer for any images/clip art and sentiments, and I have even used an AI generator. I love using watercolor clipart. My favorite techniques are: the distressed/vintage look using distress inks, stamping, embossing, layering, alcohol markers and lots more to give my products life! I love Tim Holtz products. I always welcome a sense of humor, clean or dirty. I've been putting my family into my creations for years, and trust me, it's pretty funny! Lots of my products have stories or subliminal messaging in them. And function! I really like when they are interactive (flip effect, pop up, shapes, etc.).
All of my projects are handmade. What does handmade mean? It means I'm not a machine, every product will be unique in it's own way, and created hands on by me. I'm not perfect. I try, but it's not as easy as you'd think lol. I use glue, tape, cardstock, vellum, acrylic, inks, powders, glitters, plastics, and all that fun crafty stuff. - In other words, I will be touching every bit of what you see, and using LOTS of different mediums.
So far, I've gotten really awesome feedback from all the friends and family that I've created something for. And I want to thank you all so, so much. You all know who you are and I love you all. <3
I love hearing about all the reactions, and it makes me think I'm doing something right here. Knowing that my creations have brightened someone's day is by far the best compliment I could ever receive. Personalized projects make me look at what I do in a completely different way now. I'm not trying to make throw away cards that you can find at the dollar store, or are mass produced all over. Will I have simpler/generic ones? Of course! But the ones where I incorporate your personal story, those are my favorites. Even if in a simple way. It will always amaze me how a "simple" card can have such an affect on someone.
-- A special shoutout to a young fellow from the Michael Ball Facebook fan group. Your reactions to the cards (not gifts!) that others have sent you, have inspired me so, so much! I don't know who you are, but thank you for giving me hope that there is still a little place in this crazy world for what I love to do. Even though you weren't reacting to one of MY cards, the joy you expressed for those cards you did receive was beyond beautiful, and I will never forget it. <3
I must have remade this site at least 20 times by now, and changed this section at least 50 times. The portfolio will get regular updates, and eventually my Etsy shop will be my main focus (as well as updates on social media - which I will hopefully directly link here too). I have had my share of websites over the years and, honestly, I'd rather spend the time creating new things, than making a pretty site. As long as I can keep the photos updated, this is perfect.
Check back soon. <3