Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Technology Tuesday!, New Feature, & Sale Reminder!

I’ve had quite a few people email and ask what programs I use to create my products so I thought I would share today!  And it just happens to be Tuesday—I’m always game for some fun alliteration. Smile
To create my documents I use Microsoft Publisher.  I know a lot of people use Microsoft Powerpoint to create theirs.  They work pretty similarly but Publisher uses pages instead of slides.  There may be a few other differences too, but I love working with Publisher! I create and then save as a PDF and voila! {Okay it’s a little more complicated than that, but you get my drift.}
After I finish a product I then move to  creating the thumbnail images.  I usually allow Teachers Pay Teachers to find the thumbnails in my PDF and choose a few for the product listing.  But for my blog I like to have a collage of the items included.  I’m a girl who doesn’t like to buy something if I don’t know what I’m paying for so I like to provide some insight into what is actually IN the product.  For this, I have been using a program called Paint.NET {You can download it for free here.}.  About a week ago, I got Photoshop Elements so I’ve been playing with that and I love it!  Paint.NET gets the job done though..and nothing is better than FREE!  It’s basically a middle of the road graphics program—better than regular Microsoft Paint but not quite the quality of Photoshop, etc.  Here’s a little step-by-step of how I use Paint.NET to create my collage images:
1. Open the PDF and zoom out until you see one full page.
2. Open Paint.NET and open TWO new image screens.
3. “Print screen” the page of the PDF you want to include.  On my keyboard I have to click the “fn” key on the bottom left and hit the “insert [prt sc]” button on the top right at the same time.
4. Paste into one of your Paint.NET windows.  It will ask if you want to expand the image…say yes.
5. Select only the page you want to include in your product thumbnail and then copy.
6. Switch to the other open image screen in Paint.NET {the one that is still blank}.  Paste your copied page into that.
7. Repeat until you have the pages you want on your collage.
**A few tips to consider:
-If you want to layer things on top of one another, there are two different ways to do it. 
(1) Think about what you want on the bottom and start with that.  Then just layer on top of those…with your cover/title page being last {on top}.  
(2) Use the layers feature on Paint.NET.  At the top of the screen there is a “Layers” dropdown menu…you can add new layers from there.  I suggest opening the “Layers” window if you use this option.  Simply go to the “Windows” dropdown at the top and choose Layers. Then you can see all the different layers you add to your image and easily maneuver them. Also if you use the layers option, before saving you need to “Flatten” your image so that it saves correctly.  Simply go to the “Image” dropdown at the top and select “Flatten".

I’ve considered putting together a little how-to.  Would anyone be interested?
Hope this helps you!  If you have questions feel free to email!

Special thanks to Jessica at A Turn to Learn for The Lovely Blog Award!  I’ll be back with my nominations later!
Happy Spring! Don’t forget the sale ends at midnight!
Spring into Savings


  1. I love that you are now doing the Technology Tuesday!! For people like me that are a bit tech-challenged, it will come in handy!!

  2. Thanks for the tips!! How do you add tabs to the top of your blog? Thanks!!

    Miss J

    Smiles, Crayons, and Endless Stories

    1. If you go to blogger dashboard and go to "Pages" on the left hand side. Each of my tabs is listed on my dashboard as a "page" in this. You can create new pages and then you have the dropdown option of showing them at the top or on the side. If you have more questions feel free to email me at laceykyates@gmail.com!
      Hope that helps!

    2. Thanks so much!! I figured it out!!

  3. It's good to know that I'm not the only one who isn't using powerpoint!

    Another thing you could do to take the screen shots is to open your snipping tool! If you have Vista or 7, you can type "Snipping Tool" into the search bar on the start menu and find it (or its stored in Programs>Accessories>Snipping Tool). It lets you select the area you want to take a screen shot of without having to print the whole screen. I know how time consuming it can be to get previews ready for TPT, and the snipping tool might help take out a bit of that time (maybe a whopping 30 seconds, whoo! haha!).

    Also for those of you who have a Mac, you can Do Command+Shift+3 to take a screenshot of the entire screen, or Command+Shift+4 to bring up a cursor that will let you take a screenshot of an area of the screen (and save on your desktop).

    Sorry for going off on a tangent in my comment, but I hope it helps save you a bit of time!

    1. Ahhhhh I forgot about that! Thanks for the reminder...I'll share on my post later tonight! Also didn't know that about Macs because I don't have one!

    2. :) No problem! Thank you for the shout out in your new post!



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