Archive of ‘scrapbook shopping’ category

New: “Junebug” by Basic Grey @ Memory Works

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I just posted all the new BG ‘Lemonade’ stuff that’s now being carried by Memory Works HERE. Now, I want to show you ‘Junebug’ by Basic Grey, which we also just got in stock. {To place an order, please click on the bold product name}.

June Bug THEME SET {Price: $7.75}

June Bug CARD KIT {Price: $15.00}

June Bug ALPHA STICKERS {Price: $3.00}

June Bug BUTTONS {Price: $5.00}

June Bug CHIP STICKER SHAPES {Price: $7.00}

June Bug FLOWER DOILIES {Price: $3.00}

June Bug NAVY DOILIES {Price: $3.00}

June Bug GLAZED BRADS {Price: $4.00}

June Bug POPS {Price: $4.00}

June Bug RUB ON BOOK {Price: $7.00}

June Bug TAKE NOTE {Price: $5.00}

June Bug WOOLIES {Price: $5.00}

HERE is some inspiration from the Basic Grey website.

My favorite things in this line are the Woolies and the Alpha Stickers. Oh, and that Navy Doilie is sooooo pretty! Did you see the dogs in the Chip Sticker Shapes? The pink poodle is especially cute.

Any thoughts on June Bug?

New: “Lemonade” by Basic Grey @ Memory Works

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Here is another new line we have in stock; it’s called “Lemonade” by Basic Grey.

LEMONADE – THEME SET {Price: $7.00}

LEMONADE – GREETING CARD KIT {Price: $15.00}

LEMONADE – ALPHA STICKERS {Price: $3.00}

LEMONADE – BUTTONS {Price: $5.00}

LEMONADE – CHIP STICKER SHEET {Price: $7.00}

LEMONADE – FLOWER DOILIES {Price: $3.00}

LEMONADE – GREEN DOILIES {Price: $3.00}

LEMONADE – GLAZED BRADS {Price: $4.00}

12 large and 12 small glazed brads • Coordinating colors and designs

LEMONADE – POPS {Price: $4.00}

LEMONADE – RUB ON BOOK{Price: $7.00}

LEMONADE – TAKE NOTE {Price: $5.00}

Pack includes 4 printed, die-cut transparencies with matching die-cut cardstock journaling blocks

LEMONADE – WOOLIES {Price: $5.00}

HERE is some inspiration from the Basic Grey gallery…this being my favorite…

LAYOUT by KELLY GOREE

I think my favorite products are the “doilies” papers; love the intricate cut outs. Also, the Take Note die cut transparencies with the backing. Such a unique product…don’t think I’ve seen anything like that before.

What are your thoughts on this new line from BG – like or no like?

Going to a Crop

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Well, my bags are packed and I’m going to a small crop with friends today. There are 6 or 7 of us who try and meet up every few months, which I love, because I never seem to crop at home anymore. The only time I get anything done is at crops. Anyhoo, since I’m starting up doing MEMORY WORKS again, I asked the hostess if she wanted to turn the crop today into and MW “party” so she could have the hostess credits. I was happy she said yes. So what happens is I take new catalogs and some products with me today and sell/take orders. Everything that’s ordered will be shipped together to the hostess and she distributes it to everyone. Which is easy, since we all live near each other and see each other often. The cool thing is you “share the shipping” that way instead of each customer paying it themselves. And the best part is the hostess, if we reach $150 in orders, gets a hostess credit. It’s a win-win. Actually, I’m a bit concerned with so few of us that we won’t meet the $150 minimum. It’s such a tough economy and I know everyone can’t afford to scrapbook spend the way they used to. If we get close to $150, I may add my own items to the order, so that my hostess can earn her rewards. But I just spent the last of my birthday money on THIS, so I don’t have a ton to spend right now either. Well, I’m just hoping it works out.

The main thing is this….I GET TO SCRAPBOOK TODAY!!!!! Even if the MW order thing doesn’t work out, I’m one massively happy camper. I was up late packing for the crop last night and am fairly disorganized. I’m here at the computer this morning printing photos (and order forms). So we’ll see how it goes. Hopefully, I packed enough of the right things to make some kickin’ layouts, LOL!

Hope you’re having a fabulous weekend. Do you have any plans for creative time?

New: “Traveler” by Little Yellow Bicycle @ Memory Works!

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Everybody say, “Hey-aaaayyy!” Got some new shizzle in the hizzy! Yes, the goodies have landed at Memory Works. We now carry the following items:

“TRAVELER” by Little Yellow Bicycle {Just click on the BOLD title of each item to place an order}

THEME SET {Price: $6.75}

CLEAR CUT SHAPES {Price: $5.00}

RUB-ONS {Price: $3.50}

STICKERS {Price: $4.00}

CARDSTOCK STICKERS {Price: $3.50}

JOURNALING TABLET {Price: $4.00}

CHIPBOARD ALBUM {Price: $10.00}

5.75×11.75 Chipboard Album with Acrylic Cover

PAPER TABLET {Price: $9.00}

11.75×5.75 paper tablet designed to work with the chipboard album.

I have to admit, I’m kind of a collector of travel-themed papers. I’ve scrapped some long trips (12 days in Europe, 8 days in northwest US, etc.), and have a few more on the Scrap To Do list. I’m always on the lookout for cool travel papers and I really like this line. The colors are bright but distressed (did that even make sense?), and the color combo will go with just about any travel photos. No, I promise I won’t dress my family in navy polos and orange jackets on our next trip! Really, I won’t (wink). Nah, this line will match the photos on it’s own.

I think my favorite item is the Journaling Tablet. Yeah, you know me, a sucker for journaling spots…. And I love the paper shaped like a highway sign, with the journaling lines.

HERE is a link to their website gallery with some great inspiration ~ projects using the LYB Traveler line…

What do you think of this new line, “Traveler” by Little Yellow Bicycle?

Warehouse Sale @ Pink Paislee!

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Something told me I’d better not hmm and haw on this this one or I’d miss out. I went ahead and ordered a box. I’ve never taken advantage of one of these warehouse sale or grab box kind of things, and I always regret it when I hear what cool stuff everyone else got. So I just went for it this time. I had some birthday money waiting for something special and then Pink Paislee presented a deal I couldn’t resist.

Oh, what’s that you say? You would like to know what I’m talking about??? Oh, yeah, HERE is the link! Happy shoppin’…Let me know if you ordered and we can be giddy together!

ETA 6-23-09: These boxes “begin shipping on 6/29, first come first served,” so I expect mine in early July. I will DEFINITELY show you pics of what I get! I’m so excited…eeeeee!

New Line @ Michaels: Vintage Findings by Making Memories

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I first heard talk of this line in THIS post at 2peas. So, I popped over HERE to check it out. I was quite confused because so much of it looks to me EXACTLY like something JENNI BOWLIN already has or something she would design. I assumed Jenni partnered with MAKING MEMORIES to design this line, but I searched around their website and blog and could find no mention of such. So, yeah, kinda’ weird to me that MM would be allowed to make a line that looks SO similar to another designer/company but that’s just me, I guess. No one else on the thread commented on it being a concern to them (but one Pea told me that Jenni does not work for MM, which I knew).

Anyhoo, the rumor is {this has not been confirmed, as far as I know} that MICHAELS has an exclusive deal with MM to sell Vintage Findings now (June 2009), then the line will be released to the LSSs in the fall. Which, if I were an LSS, would tick me off and make me not order it because by the time the LSSs receive it, it will be “old news” to scrapbook shoppers. That’s probably all by design and I know companies like Making Memories are doing whatever they can to survive in this economy but it still makes you feel kinda’ icky, doesn’t it?

This issue came up before when BASIC GREY did exclusives with Michaels and the paper stacks for lines like Urban Prairie (one of my favorite BG lines evah!). You can read about it HERE. I know that many LSS owners, and LSS supporters like myself, were pretty upset by the BG development because “How dare they dis the LSS like that ?!?!?” I guess I finally came to peace with it for these reasons: 1. Those of us without LSS’s anymore can still easily buy it, and 2. If it comes down to it, I believe in whatever measures it takes to keep the SB companies in business. But I know it ain’t pretty, folks. One positive I can point out is that, to my knowledge, this kind of thing doesn’t happen all that often. I can only think of these 2 instances in the past year or so. Someone please correct me if I’m wrong.

Anyway, here are a couple quick photos of the items they had at my Mike’s. They were taken with a stealth iPhone, so as usual, please forgive the quality. At least at you get the idea, right?

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See those little crystal-topped stick pins in the top photo ?? {HERE’s a link….stupid MM website won’t let me copy the photo}. Those reminded me of an online AMR friend, so I bought them and she’ll be receiving them in the mail soon. I love scrap friends!

Okay, all that said and please don’t shoot! But I’m not a fan of this line. Some of the papers are cute ~ I like the map ones ~ but I guess I’m not a true vintage girl because I can’t see myself using these things on my pages to a large enough degree that I’d buy a whole pack of the findings. A few of them were cute – the labels and stick pins come to mind – but overall, my review is … Eh. I thought things like tickets and simple labels were overpriced (you could make them or buy them on Etsy or at an office supply store for a lot less). But I know there are a lot of you true Vintage Girls out there who will really like it. There were many on that 2peas thread who were totally in love and buying it up like crazy. That’s the beauty part…to each their own in scrapbooking. There’s something for everyone.

What do you think of the Vintage Findings line by Making Memories? And what do you make of the Michaels exclusive on it?

Thickers and Martha Stewart Wedding at Big Lots

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Finally! Some THICKERS showed up at my Big Lots. Not that I was stalking it….because I wasn’t….I mean, not that you can prove….

Here are the ones I bought. I wasn’t thrilled with the selection, especially compared to what I’ve seen others post from their BL. But, hey, 2 bucks for something that normally goes for $4-5? I’ll take it, mama!

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Did you know that Big Lots also has a bunch of MARTHA STEWART wedding stuff right now? There are packages of tiny bling and pearls, cake topper frames, garlands, etc. As one would imagine, Martha’s items are very tasteful and of good quality. I was tempted by some MS 12×12 postbound albums that were marketed as a Wedding Guest Book. I don’t need one of those, but I figured for 2 bucks a piece, I could pull out the guest book pages and insert a bunch of page protectors. Alas, I decided against buying any. Here is what I DID get. These MS heart tins I got the last time I was there. Only $2 for 24 pretty little tins. I’m going to put candies in them and give them away at my crop in July.

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The daisy coasters are stinkin’ adorable. Think I will keep a couple for me, then give the rest out at the crop, too. Don’t you think they make a great embellishment for a Spring layout? The scalloped ones are so much cuter (and less orange) in real life. I flipped one over so you can see that you could just use the white side for a journaling box. In really faint print, it has a tiny logo in the middle but you can easily write over it.

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I’ve been having a really rough week so that was a nice little surprise. I got a screamin’ deal on my favorite shampoo at Big Lots, too. Me likey that store….

Are You Disloyal to the LSS If You Shop Big Box or Discount?

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There is an older post on my blog where I told you about some cool items that were new to Michaels. Here is a comment I recently received on that entry:

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A few posts ago you lamented the possible closing of your LSS. Yet it’s posts like this — and all your “look at the mass deals at big box stores and HSN” and “buy from me @ Scrapworks so I can break even” posts — that are helping put the independent LSSs out of business.

I’m not saying that nobody’s entitled to a bargain. But you can’t have it both ways.
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When she said, “A few posts ago you lamented the possible closing of your LSS,” she was referring to THIS post. Her reference to HSN is HERE (well, one of my many, LOL) and “. . . buy from me @ Scrapworks so I can break even,” is referring to, I guess, THIS post about my affiliation with MEMORY WORKS, because I don’t recall ever asking you to buy from me so I can break even (?).

Anyway, I was not surprised or insulted by her comment, as its one that I expected to hear, I guess. But, as I e-mailed to the poster of the comment, I think it brings up a very interesting point. I mean, the state of this industry – the scrapbooking industry – does cause quite a dilemma for those of us who would like to support it and keep it alive. For real. How do we reconcile the endless message board posts and blog entries about the great deals to be found at big box stores, et al? How do we explain our online orders to “peachy cheap” sites and the like? How do we defend our copious use of 40% and 50% off coupons at stores like Michaels, Hobby Lobby, and the like? (The commenter didn’t even call me out on that one….but my conscience forced me to confess it, yeah).

Well, here is my story, and I’m stickin’ to it….

{I’m going to repeat things I’ve said again and again on this blog, so you lovely Regular Readers, please forgive me the repetition. But here goes…}

I live in a rural area. A few years ago, there were 7…count ‘em, SEVEN…local scrapbook stores within one hour of me. There were 2 LSSs in the town next to me (15 minutes away), 3 stores that were 30 minutes away, and 2 more that were a good one-hour drive. To many, you wouldn’t even call 5 of those stores an “LSS”…how “local” is it, if you have to drive for 30 minutes to one hour to get there? But I considered them my local stores. I choose to live in the boondocks, so I understand shopping here is not at a premium and though someone in LA might have crazy access to the stores of their choice, I don’t. Just the way it is.

But here’s the point: When there were 7 LSSs within driving distance of me, I shopped ‘em, baby! That was back when I worked my high-powered job and made excellent money. Scrapbooking was new to me and I had some serious product collection to do, ya know what I mean? I didn’t limit my spending to LSS’s either….I shopped at Scrapbook Expo twice a year (which is made up of manufacturers, and of scrapbook stores from far and wide). I shopped at CKU. When I traveled for business, I found LSSs in the towns I went to and I shopped them Bad Boys, too. Looking back, it was an unhealthy obsession but my point….my point again was? Oh, that’s right! That no one has been a better Supporter of the LSS than me! Seriously.

To go back even further, I discovered scrapbooking in 2001 by attending a CREATIVE MEMORIES party (yeah, fess up, so did you!). I took one trip to MICHAELS way back then, didn’t really care for what I saw, and stayed away for years. I mean, I might go for the basics like adhesive and such but, for the most part, the LSS owned my heart. They had the helpful people, the latest products that I saw in CREATING KEEPSAKES magazine, and I didn’t know from a discount…I happily paid full retail price. Well, until I filled up my “frequent flyer” card at the LSS and got some free product. Shizzle, I was so happy each time, you wooda’ thought I won the freakin’ lottery!

Fast forward to 2007 and…welcome to my world…my income has shrunk considerably and 6 of the 7 LSSs in my area have closed. Now, to digress for a minute…sure the economy played a part in these store closures, and that is reflected in the mass amount of LSS closures nationwide. But to be fair, I would blame at least 5 of the 7 LSS closures on things OTHER THAN the failing economy/industry. MY dream was to open an LSS so, believe you me, I was paying close attention, I was running the numbers, and I was privy to “insider information” on several of these stores. The last thing I wanted was for these stores to fail. It truly. broke. my heart. I WANTED them to succeed. I rah rah’d them every chance I got. I took out of town visitors there. I had them sponsor my crops. I was a hugely loyal customer. I did not criticize them to anyone (in my out loud voice). I just shopped and supported and cropped. So you can imagine my sadness when, one by one, these local scrapbook stores closed their doors.

Okay, so after the closure of 6 of “my” 7 stores, where did that leave me to shop? You guessed it…Walmart. Target. Michaels. Eventually, Tuesday Morning opened 30 minutes from me where, quite by accident while looking for pillowcases one day, I discovered they carried scrapbooking supplies. And, lucky them, they are close to Costco where I shop once a month. Walmart has the basics. I have probably spent $20 on scrapbook supplies there in the past year. Target has slowly rotating stock, discounted prices that have slowly morphed thisclose to retail prices, and the occasional clearance endcap worth shopping. That leaves Michaels and Tuesday Morning, where I do utilize my coupons (for the few items they’re still allowed on, LOL) and I take advantage of the occasional good deal. My point is that (and there IS a point here, somewhere, I swear!), for those of us in less populated areas with no LSS within 30 minutes, do we have much of a choice? Am I not to shop at all, except for the few times per year I can justify driving 45 minutes to a town I have no other business in? My answer, the one I’m completely comfortable with, would be no.

I’m sure there will be those who disagree, and that’s groovy. What is America if not a place where we can agree to disagree, right? But I think I’m doing more of a service toward keeping the scrapbooking industry alive – even if I can’t personally support LSSs the way that I used to – by shopping at the likes of Michaels and Tuesday Morning, than if I did not shop for scrapbooking supplies at all. Let’s face it…in this horrible economy, scrapbook spending of any kind is a luxury. If I can, in my small bloggy way, entice people to spend ANY money on ANY scrapbooking materials, well then, I call myself a winner, damn it! I blog about items and deals at Michaels because that is my mainline to supplies (yeah, that drug reference was intentional). If I had LSSs to publicize, I would. Damn straight. Before the blog redesign (and you loyal readers will vouch for this), I had about a bazillion links to ALL MOMENTS REMEMBERED, my favorite online store, all over my blog. I linked to STACEY and her store every chance I got. Well, now even the AMR online store has fallen victim to these times and, although Stacey still sells supplies online through her ETSY store, there is no longer an AMR online store to link to. {Happy side note: Stacey opened a brick-and-mortar AMR in her town in Oregon and, at last report, it was doing great!}

Bottom line, what I’m trying to say in my as always verbose way is this: I’m doing the best I can. I shop my 45-minutes-away-LSS as often as I can. I shop at Michaels to the point where they yell “Norm!” when I walk in the door. If I see something I like at Tuesday Morning or Costco, I shop and I share. I sell Memory Works so I can make a little mo’ money to…guess what?…spend on scrapbook supplies. I don’t mind if people question my motives or my method, because I know I’m just doing my thang.

And I know that I do it out of the love I have for this craft and my true, heartfelt desire to play a part in keeping it on life support through these crushing times. I hope in my own small way, I inspire and support you in doing the same. Of course, support your LSS! But don’t feel badly if you show your financial support in other ways, too.

Shop on, Sistas!

PS: I would dearly love to hear your thoughts on this issue, but please, keep it nice. No harshing on the nice lady who left the comment that generated this post, or I will edit/delete posts as necessary. If you would like to harsh on me, that’s fine….

Thuh Blog: New Look and Linkees

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I wanted to write about some changes I’ve been making to my blog and kind of ‘splain myself.

The Theme – I was rockin’ that WordPress “Albeo” theme for quite a while and I was really bored with it. I look at the darn thing every day and it just got old, ya know? It’s hard to find a format what will work with my content, mainly the larger photos I like to post…the better to see those scrapbook products with, my dear. I road tested a few new formats and have settled on this one.

The Header – This is my first theme with a customizable header and I finally figured out how to make one, LOL! The photo I have up there now is one I took of the Colosseum when I visited Rome in October 2006. I hope to occasionally change up the header photo.

The Memory Works Stuff – This is the main change I wanted to talk about. I’ve been a Memory Works consultant since February 2007 and I’ve had this blog since January 2007. So for the last 2+ years, I’ve kind of made it a point not to mix the two. My blog is about my scrapbook obsession, period. In almost 470 posts, I haven’t really talked about Memory Works or the products I sell. I’ve mentioned that I host crops, my “customers,” etc. but I think I’ve been pretty good about keeping this an obsessed scrapbooker’s blog vs. a Memory Works blog.

In all honesty, part of the reason I did it at the beginning was that they would’ve kicked me off of CKMB (Creating Keepsakes Message Board) if this was an MW blog. Their rule was that if you linked to your blog in your siggie, the blog’s primary purpose could not be to promote your biz. One time I had a close call when the CK tech people sent me a warning that I would be banned if I didn’t get rid of my blog link in my siggie. I politely explained that, while I was a consultant, the blog was a personal blog not a Memory Works blog. Then my people called their people and – badda bing – we came to an understanding. Nah, but that little episode did make me ultra paranoid about keeping it un-MW because I didn’t want to be sent packing from CKMB.

Well, since then, I’ve chosen to go packing on my own so CKMB has not been the issue for some time. I guess I just always felt weird about self-promoting, or coming off as a salesperson instead of as your scrapbooking friend who just wants to talk about the cute new stuff, ya know? But I guess the time has finally come where I can reconcile it all. This is my damn blog and if I want to talk about Memory Works and share a link or publicize my products, I’m going to! For shizzle. I figure after all the free publicity I’ve given, what, hundreds (?) of other companies over the years, it’s my turn. When I share products with you, I always make a point to provide a link where you can see more (even though some of them make it difficult or impossible to do so, something I just don’t get). My policy was to, if possible, link to the product manufacturer or however I could get you closest to the source of something. For instance, when I wrote about the Share and Tell system, I linked directly to the Pebbles Inc. website, not to an online store who sells it, or to another blogger that wrote about it. I mean, I might do all those other links in addition to, but I have always tried to drive traffic to the manufacturer.

But from now on, you will see me linking to product listings on my Memory Works site. I truly hope that doesn’t offend anyone. Why? Because I love you! I don’t want to ever become a ‘shove it down your throat’ salesperson. Heck, I can’t stand people like that (an example…a school mom I know wears her Pampered Chef polo to every. single. school event. I mean, seriously??). But I figure if I’m taking the time, love, and devotion to write up a product I love, and MW happens to carry said product, I’m going to link to my own site. Maybe you will never, ever, in a million years place an order with me and that is totally fine. But a girl can try, can’t she? {As it happens, the link to my Memory Works site is currently the “top click” on my blog and yet only one online friend has placed an order with me so far.}

This is kind of a side note but one thing that amazes me is that for all the free product endorsements I’ve provided for two years, with linkees to the manufacturer, I can probably count on one hand the number of times they have thanked me for the link. Either they are ungrateful, or they don’t know how to check their stats or run a Google check, which are basics I’d think scrapbook companies would possess. Anyway, I just don’t want you to think that all those manufacturers will be sorry to see my links go, LOL. They never even noticed them in the first place.

And just for the record, I have never received any sort of compensation for writing this dang blog. It has all been on my own time, for no financial gain. The few times I’ve received a free demo product in the mail, I’ve disclosed that in the review (the only ones coming to mind are the Ribbon Ring and the Angel Baby scrapbooking kit). I could have chosen to make some money off my blog with ads or some such, but I never did do that. I hope this MW thang is a happy medium that doesn’t bug you too much.

I guess that’s it. If I get out of hand with the Memory Works stuff, to the point where it’s so overdone that you run from the room screaming…tell me. A good smack upside the head usually works. Then in your best New York accent, say, “Snap out of it!” just like Cher said to Nicolas Cage in Moonstruck. I mean it.

If you have any thoughts on the whole matter, please share. Even if you hate everything I just said. Seriously.

Walmart, Michaels, the LSS…Oh My!

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I had the opportunity to do some shopping in The Big City, as I had a fun Girls Weekend at the beach and, what do you know, I had to drive through civilization to get there. Here’s my shopping report:

On Clearance at Mike’s: Prima flower milk jars($6.99 down to $2.99), and Making Memories 8×8 paper pad, Travel. See those cream colored flowers in the bottom left of the photo? I had those in my hand. They went on a quite a walk around the store with me. I had layout ideas in my head on which I would use them.

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But I put them back on the shelf when I found this. Ah, paper punches on Clearance! Wow, that worked out nicely….with the photos stacked on top of each other, I almost matched them up, didn’t I? These were on an end cap, where our Mike’s now has a lot of scrap clearance these days.

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Here is the punch I bought: Regularly $14.99, marked down to $7.99, and with my 40% coupon, it cost me just over $5. Did I get a great deal or what? Sounds like 66% off to me! Isn’t it cute, how it does the zigzag edge, which reminds me of Bazzill’s specialty cardstock…now I can make it myself. This punch not only punches the zigzag shape, it also embosses a dotted line, adding the perfect detail. I’m so happy I got it!

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My other purchase from Michaels, a bling title that says “Beach.” This is perfect for the title of my Girls Weekend layout. I’m going to title it “Beach Girls”.

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Remember, I told you HERE that my last LSS (still, it’s 45 minutes away) sent out an e-mail that they need help through the summer and, hopefully, they would not have to close in the fall. So I paid a little visit, didn’t I?

ETA: Chris commented about Sass Lass and MME being at Michaels so I’m going to clarify here….everything below here was from my LSS, except the clipboards which are from Wallie World ~ I wrote this post at 1am so I wasn’t very clear :)

Here is a predone layout I bought. Number one, I love it…the Love title, the white puff paint dots around the scallops, and the Basic Grey line that was used, which I happen to have plenty of, I’m going to make a companion page to go with this. From the 50% off table, so I paid about $3 for it.

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Here are some bee-you-tiful papers I got from My Minds Eye. Love, love, LOVE scalloped edges.

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Here is a sheet of Flair Designs paper. I like how you can cut it apart for use on your pages.

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Here’s some more goodies. The back of one of the MME (My Mind’s Eye) sheets, Basic Grey “Offbeat” chipboard stickers, some journal and title spots from MME, and a great deal on a ribbon pack (50% off).

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Finally, may I share a whole lotta’ Sass Lass love? Yep, these were also on the clearance table, and only cost me $2.49…wait, no! Half off of $2.49 would be about $1.25 each, or $5 for all four.

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Oh, not “finally!” I forgot to show you the clipboards I got from Walmart. I’m going to alter them, and use them in my home office. They cost under $1 each…

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“Thank you for watching. This has been Scrapbook Obsession reporting from inside Scrapbook World.”

Cosmo Cricket “Early Bird”

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Yippie kie YAY! Memory Works now has the new COSMO CRICKET!! I love the color way, the cherries, just the general happy-ness of it.

Here’s what you get with our exclusive THEME SET: Six 12×12 sheets of double-sided patterned cardstock paper and one 12×12 sheet of coordinating cardstock strips. ($6.50)

Here’s the ELEMENTS sheet: One 12×12 sheet of double-sided cardstock cut-apart journaling cards and elements ($1.00).

and here are the STICKERS: One 5 3/4 x 13 sheet of weather-worn cardstock stickers ($2.00)

You know, that’s not bad. You could have all three pieces (well, 9 pieces technically) for under $10. Cosmo has kept their prices really reasonable.

HERE is a Cosmo Cricket blog post from April 2009 showing the “sneak peek” of this line, but it has great, large photos of all the pieces. You’ll notice that the Papers and Elements I show above are actually double-sided…more than meets the eye…I like that!

Here is a layout from the CC blog, by Julie Comstock (HERE’s her Twitter!):

Also from their blog, a recipe box by LISA FALDUTO

…and Early Bird cards by MAREN BENEDICT, from the CC Design Team:

Here is a fun purse covered in an Early Bird pattern…alas, it’s not real, but a mere digital creation…still super cute!

There are more Cosmo Cricket “Early Bird” layouts and projects on their blog HERE, HERE, and HERE. I just love their BLOG….pure and total eye candy, plus those people are wicked funny.

Oh, MEMORY WORKS also has the Cosmo Cricket SPINNER CARD, which I guess has been on backorder (must be popular). 5″ square chipboard card. Bottle spins freely in the card ($1.50).

So if I have you jones-in’ for some CC “Early Bird,” go get some at your LSS or click on ‘I’m a MW Consultant‘ (top left) and we’ll order you some…

CK Getting Thinner and a Possible LSS Closure…{Sigh}

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I got the new issue of CREATING KEEPSAKES at Target last Friday. I’ve flipped through it and like it a lot. It is pretty thin and I’m getting so worried that even CK will go the way of the dodo bird….extinct. All of these magazines shutting down is just depressing me to no end (read my past posts about HERE, HERE, and HERE).

Speaking of shutting down, I got this sad e-mail from the only LSS left in my area (I will quote part of it directly from their newsletter):

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As many of you know, (store name) has been severely impacted by the poor economy in the past year. We have always relied heavily on the year round tourism … and with the high gas prices beginning late last spring followed by the economic crash in the fall we haven’t had that support for over a year now. While we have strived not only to keep our doors open, but have continued to bring in new product during this difficult time, sales continue to drop. Things have gone from bad to worse.

We have always been hopeful that we could survive this tough economic time, but we realize that we cannot keep going at the current pace. If sales do not pick up over the summer, we will be forced to close our doors in the fall. We promised our customers we would not just close our doors quietly so we feel we must be honest with you about our situation.
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I feel so sorry, well, for myself of course, but mostly for these 2 sweet ladies who’ve done nothing but run a wonderful store for several years, only to have their dream possibly crushed by this awful economy. They did include a coupon for $5 off any $25 purchase that you can print and use as many times as you like (one per visit) between now and the end of August. I hope that will motivate shoppers to come to their rescue, although I know scrapbooking typically slows down in the summer as we all get busy with outdoor activities and kids being out of school. I will pray (and shop) and hope they can pull it out. This is our last “local” store…we used to have 7 within an hour of me. If this store closes, my closest store will be about 2 hours away. I wish I had millions of dollars and could help these stores stay afloat until better times.

I know many of you have lost most or all of your LSSs in recent times and it’s crushing, isn’t it?

Memory Works: Website, Catalogs, and Selling Goals

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Well, I took the plunge. I just signed up for my own website with Memory Works again! Whoo hoo, feels good! What didn’t feel good was the $25 set-up fee but, oh well, it’s the price of doing business, right? Then it will cost me $10.95/month to keep it. That is for the “Basic” option, which has all the features I really need. There is also a “Premium” option for $18.95/month (plus the $25 set-up fee, of course). So let’s do the math, shall we? I make 20% profit on everything I sell through Memory Works. So just to break even and pay for my website, I have to sell at least $55 retail of MW goodies each month.

Then, let’s average out my catalog cost: They cost me $3 per catalog, plus shipping costs from MW to me, and me to the customer…we’re talking about $5 cost to me per catalog I give out to customers (that would be an average just for estimating sake…sometimes I hand them right to the customer with zero shipping cost, other times it costs me $4-5 to ship a catalog). Say I give out 5 catalogs per month, that’s about $25 per month in catalog costs. To make that money back, I will need to sell $125 in product to cover my catalog costs.

So, my selling goal will be $55 plus $125 = $180 per month, and that’s just to break even. I like to have goals. Then I know what I’m striving for. Now, to put some other things in motion to make that happen. It’s exciting! I know it will be super tough in this economy, so wish me luck….

Oh! I almost forgot to tell you my website, should you be interested (LOL). It’s http://erika.memory-works.com. Check it out and let me know if you have any questions.

Organization of Card Making Supplies

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In THIS post, I showed you the new Cropper Hopper storage I got. I decided to use the binder storage to get my cardmaking supplies in one place and out of the Iris drawers I had them in. The problem with the drawers was mainly that the blank envelopes and cards would get jammed when I opened and closed the drawers. Also, nothing stacked in there very nicely and it shifted around, not staying very organized. So here is a photo of what I started with – 2 Iris drawers of cards, envelopes, rub-on books, stamped images, etc.

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Actually, I realized when I was all done (or thought I was!), that there was another Iris drawer so it's not pictured here but the finished product has THREE drawers worth of stuff, yay!

Here is how one side ended up, with most of the blank cards and envelopes in the 4 pockets. I like how they have closing tabs so they don't get all yucky or dusty.

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Here is how the entire opened binder looked when I was done.

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Here is just the right side, with larger cards/envelopes, card sentiment stickers, etc. To make it work for my stuff, I had to cut out some of the dividers. The top section started out with 12 small sections and I cut out 6 of them to create a space large enough for my items. In the bottom section, I cut out the 2 vertical dividers (it originally had 3 sections) to accommodate my larger cards and envies. I just snipped them out with scissors right along the crease, careful to not make holes.

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Here's the trash pile when I was done, from taking everything out of it's cellophane packages, ribbon off spools, etc. To me, that is room SAVED, baby!

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I hope you enjoyed my card making stash makeover. Have you done something similar?

And stayed tuned...tomorrow will be my Mike's stamps storage revamp!

New at Michaels

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Part 2 of my Big City Shopping day, and now we proceed to Michaels. It must’ve been ANNA GRIFFIN day, because just like TUESDAY MORNING, Mike’s had some new Anna stuff. The line is called “Darcey” and the colors are bright and look better in person than they do in my blurry iPhone photo.

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I love this scalloped acrylic album! It has 5 pages and 2 binder rings. I didn’t get one because, as you can see from the signage in the first photo, all the “Designer Corner” stuff was on sale for 25% off. I’ll wait for a 50% coupon and get this album for 10 buckeroonies.

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These chipboard letters are cute, too. I use a lot of bright colors AND black, so these may be a future purchase (with coupon, of course…).

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This is a new line by PRIMA. It’s a departure from their usual pretty-pretty stuff. The skulls and guitars – I don’t know if you can tell from the photo – are made from tiny bling. Very cute! I think this line is very cool but I don’t have anything I would use it on.

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Here is the Making Memories “Black Tie” line that I talked about HERE.

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And this was my favorite of the new stuff: The “Vacation” line by Me and My Big Ideas (aka MAMBI). I’m a sucker for bright, tropical colors for all those upcoming summer layouts. We have a swimming pool so I end up doing lots of layouts with turquoise being the main color. This line will be a perfect fit.

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This was interesting…a new line by K&Co…darnit, I can’t remember the name of the designer, maybe someone can help me out or I’ll try to find it online. Anyway, the focus seems to be “green” with those tote bags and recycled packaging, similar to the K&CO/Amy Butler “Lotus” line they recently carried. Not my style, but cute.

ETA 5/21/09: Thanks to a comment left by ALESK…..it’s Carolyn Gavin. Thank you! Love my girls who comment! *U Rawk*

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Closer look at MAMBI travel and summer stuff…

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Cute new EK SUCCESS punches! Flowers and fruit…so summery.

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Here are some photos from after I got home. On top are the MAMBI journal spots and “Vacation” title I got…yum! (Both for 25% off). The Making Memories “Well Worn Tags” were sold as a pack at Tuesday Morning. Normally, they would’ve cost about $12 ($4 each), but I got all three for $4. That’s, like, 66% off, am I right? What a steal…

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This is the coupon (20% off entire purchase from 9 to 1 on Memorial Day), and June coupon book they put in my bag at checkout. Kewl.

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Just an example – the discounts from the first page. Good stuff, yeah?

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My favorite purchase of the day, a scallop square Giga Punch. I used my 50% off coupon and got it for around $9. Schwing!

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So that’s the haps at Michaels these days, and my fun purchases. At Mike’s, what have you gotten lately or what are you planning to buy?

Cropper Hopper Organization at Tuesday Morning

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Made my monthly trip to The Big City and here is what I found at Tuesday Morning…

There were a lot of ANNA GRIFFIN packs – huge ones with 12×12 paper and tons of embellies to mini album kits.

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Here were some fun EK SUCCESS punches that were very tempting (but I resisted…can you?). These ones are a pacifier, arrow, and speech bubble. There were a few other shapes, too.

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For me, this is where I hit the motherlode….CROPPER HOPPER STORAGE !!! I had always wanting these when they first came out because I love vertical bookshelf storage for my scrappy stuff. I own stock in CH VERTICAL PAPER HOLDERS, ya know. But these items were out of my budget (because I am super cheap, yeah).

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But I picked up the 2-drawer/4-pocket binder ($8.99) which I plan to use to organize my card-making supplies. I don’t have a ton but right now they’re in some Iris drawers and not very well organized. The 3×3 embellishment drawer ($2.99) will be the perfect way to organize my Mike’s stamps finally! I’m really excited about that one. They’ve also been stacked in an Iris drawer…til now, LOL!

Here you can see the retail prices, and what a great deal Tuesday Morning has on them…

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Here is what the inside of the pocket binder looks like.

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When I get some schtuff inside my new storage, I’ll post pics and see what you think. Have you found any good deals at TM lately?

PS: Stay tuned for the next episode of Shopaholic Obsession….er, I mean….Scrapbook Obsession….when I’ll show you what’s new at Mike’s and what I picked up there….

Making Memories “Black Tie” at Michaels

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Thank you to BENITA, such a sweet Pea, who posted the above photo on THIS thread. She pointed out that the black and white flowers are Primas, not Making Memories; however, they were a perfect match so there ya’ go!

On the thread, it was discussed that this looks like the Making Memories line called “Wedding” (which is sold at 2PEAS ONLINE STORE, and HERE is a look at it on the Making Memories site), but it IS a different line, perhaps a Michaels exclusive? HERE is a link to Michaels.com with some Black Tie items, so methinks that’s what is going on in the hizzy.

I love black and white scrapbook lines. They are not only for weddings, anniversaries, proms, etc. but so versatile to use on on other types of layouts. I like to do heritage layouts in these colors. I didn’t really care for Mike’s last black and white line called “Sabrina”.


LAYOUT BY CHRISTY HARRIS TAKEN FROM THE MAKING MEMORIES BLOG

The pink is what threw me off. I mean, it was cute and all, I just couldn’t use it really (no offense meant to Christy’s adorable layout; I love it!). If you like Sabrina, it’s on Michael’s clearance rack now, btw. Peace out.

Scrapbooking on “The Locator”

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If you’ve read my blog for a bit, you know that ~ being “somewhat” Scrapbook Obsessed ~ I’m always seeking out things in the media or pop culture where scrapbooking is mentioned. For instance, HERE, HERE, and HERE. But this time, scrapbooking being part of a popular television show found me. Oh, do TELL!

Well, one of my favorite shows that I tape and watch constantly is “THE LOCATOR” on WeTV. If you haven’t seen it, there’s this hottie named Troy Dunn who does his P.I. shizzle and reunites people with their long lost friend or family member. There is one rule for watching The Locator: You. Will. Cry. Okay, there is just NO way you are going to watch this show and not cry, so don’t even bother trying, sister. Have some kleenex, a sleeve, an understanding dog…somewhere to wipe your snot because, like Oprah says, you will be a-booin and a-hooin, making that ugly cry face before the show is over.

Okay, so I noticed my trusty DVR had taped a one-hour episode (they are usually 30-minutes long) and I was stoked to watch it. It was Episode 1 of Season 2 so it was special. The first part, where a lady wants to be reunited with her mom, ended badly. Mom wrote daughter a letter…telling her all the reasons she could NOT meet with her. That was the first case I’ve watched where Troy couldn’t bring the people together. It was super sad.

Then started the second part, where 4 sisters are trying to find their 5th sister; they were all from the same mom but 5 different dads and were separated out into foster care and adoption. Here is what the website says about it:

A Daughter’s Dream / The Last Sister
Episode Summary: In 1985, Wendy and Christopher Radcliff’s mother, Jennifer, left them to be raised by their paternal grandparents when they were just 9 and 10 years old. The brother and sister have called on Troy to locate Jennifer, who originally escaped from an abusive relationship with their father. In the next story, you’ll hear about five sisters separated since childhood. Through many years of hard work and research, the second oldest sister, Nycole, 26, made it possible for four of them to be together again, but they are all still searching for their baby sister Sarah.

Searchers: Wendy Radcliff – Wendy and her brother have not seen or heard from their mother, Jennifer, since she made the decision to leave her children in the care of their grandparents. Nycole Kiefer – When Nycole was only eight years old she and her four sisters were put into child protective services. Nycole has spent 10 years searching for her family.

The Searchees: Jennifer – It’s been 20 years since Wendy’s mother left, and she hopes she will be at a point in her life where she is ready to be reunited with her firstborn children. Sarah Martin – It will be the first time Sarah, 23, sees her mom, and the first time her mom sees all of her grown-up daughters together.

Okay, so the scrapbooky part comes in at the end when all 5 of them are getting together for the first time. The four sisters meet up at….a scrapbook store! It’s EVER AFTER in the San Diego area of Cali. They are sitting around the crop table in the back, looking through scrapbooks. Troy shows up (unbeknownst to the sisters, he has their 5th sister waiting outside) and asks if they have any photos of the sister they are looking for, Sarah. They show him one infant photo of her and tell him that’s the only photo they have. Then he whips out 3 or 4 present-day shots of Sarah and says, “Have you seen this one? Or this one?” and their jaws drop, they cry, they see that she has a son…”We have a nephew!” Then Troy says, “Or how about this one?” and turns around showing them Sarah herself is standing behind him. They have their reunion in the scrapbook store. Apparently, two of the sisters scrapbook. When Troy says, “So you guys are scrapbookers?” one sister says something like, “I am. And Nycole is. Actually, Nycole was first and she got me into it. She was the instigator!” Which was so funny because don’t YOU blame the person who got you started scrapbooking? Like, you got all addicted and stuff so fast and needed more like it was scrap-crack and you’re all obsessed and jonesing and you don’t want to take personal responsibility for it, so you grab the person who got you started and you’re, like, “But it’s HER fault that I’m frickin’ addicted!” Am I right? You know I’m right.

Anyway, HERE is a link to the episode description and some video extras that were NOT part of the televised show.

THIS is the link to “Learn more about the searchees,” a 1.5 minute video which shows footage from the show and gives a synopsis of the case.

HERE is “Learn more about the searchers,” a 2-minute video where the 4 sisters mention how their case worker made them Life Books, so they had photos of one another. What an awesome case worker….

THIS is one last video (1+ minute long) called “Learn more about the reunion” where they talk to all the sisters, and there are shots of them being in the scrapbook store.

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