scrapbook shopping

Heidi Swapp Tote-Ally Cool Tote at Tuesday Morning

I got this a couple weeks ago but wasn’t able to load the photos to my computer until now. I heard these are still at some TUESDAY MORNING stores so I thought I’d show you what a great deal they are.

Here’s what the tote looks like. I chose this blue pattern but there were others, too.

IMG_1089

A close up of the price tag, so you can see what a mega deal this is….and a list of what’s in it (hope it’s readable, though blurry…sorry).

IMG_1090

IMG_1091

And here are all the contents…

IMG_1093

IMG_1094

Honestly, I bought this for the bag more than anything. I’ve been looking for a large and cute tote to carry all my MEMORY WORKS stuff in, including catalogs and products. This will be perfect because it zips closed so my things won’t get damaged or dusty; it holds the heaviness of the catalogs because it’s sturdy; and it even has lots of cool pockets inside and out to hold my calculator, pens, scissors, blank price tags, etc. The tote alone would sell for about $30.

And I love HEIDI SWAPP embellies, so that’s just icing on the cake.

Fancy Pants “Happy Holidays Mega Collection”

Oh, Memory Works, WHY must you tempt me so?? I opened up my MW website today to see if the MME MEGA KITS and MME BOHEMIA CHIPBOARD KITS were still in stock {they’re not; they were very popular as predicted … and gonzo}. But there is this next “mega” deal…. {The colors look quite nice with my blog header, don’t they?}

———-
Fancy Pants: Happy Holidays Mega Collection
Come celebrate Christmas in July with the Fancy Pants Happy Holidays Collection.
RETAIL VALUE OF $80.00 which we are selling at only $34.99

This collection includes:

1 – 8X8 Happy Holidays Paper Pad (32 Sheets) $9.00 Retail

1 – Happy Holidays Embellishment Kit (Epoxy Brads, Label Holders, Binder Clips and File Folders) $15.00 Retail

1 – Happy Holidays Printed Chipboard Shapes $13.00 Retail

1 – Happy Holidays Printed Chipboard Alphabet $13.00 Retail

2 – 3X3 Christmas Stamps $4.00 Retail Each

1 – 8X8 Happy Holidays Binder Album (includes 10 8X8 page protectors) $22.00 Retail

(Retail) Price: $80.00
ON SALE Price: $34.99 (Save 57%)
————

Looks like such a cool way to scrap one entire holiday season, or else maybe a “layout a year” type Christmas album. My normal scrap size is 12×12, but this 8×8 would be fun to keep out on the coffee table each Christmas season to share with guests. And the kids would love it, too, I’m sure.

Alas, I cannot afford this sweet deal at this particular juncture. Just blew the rest of my birthday dough on the MY MINDS EYE KIT {which has arrived in my hot little hands, btw!!!!}. But click up top on the “I’m a MW consultant” (or here’s a direct LINKEE) if you’re interested in it… Then I can live through you vicariously :)

Making Memories: The Slice … Now in Pink

Read all about it HERE.

Here is where they are talking about it on 2PEAS and AMR

I notice that is says, “Exclusively at your local independent store.” I guess that means they won’t carry it @ Michaels, like they do the green one? I don’t know. Either way, I won’t be buying one but I thought you PINK LUVAHS would want to know, LOL! I finally came to peace with the fact that the Baby Bug (Cricut) is enough and I should be grateful I have it :)

Will you be shopping for a pretty pink Slice?

PS: It’s prolly too late now since this is tomorrow (!), but I just remembered this from my Michaels e-mail…

FREE Making Memories®
SliceTM Machine Demo
Saturday, July 18, 1pm–3pm

Watch the SliceTM die cutting machine in action. This cordless, portable cutter creates hundreds of shapes with Making Memories® exclusive design cards.

Bohemia Embossed Chipboard by My Minds Eye

Sorry for another Memory Works “advertising” post so soon, but I just saw that they had this other new item and it would go so well with the MME 29th Street Market MEGA PACK.

MY MINDS EYE – BOHEMIA EMBOSSED CHIPBOARD

Distress it, paint it, ink it, sand it, show it off. Unique mulit-dimension Bohemia Chipboard. Includes 52 shapes and pieces. An $8 retail value for only $3.

Here are some sample layouts from the MY MINDS EYE GALLERY, showing this cool product being used:

ALL THREE LAYOUTS BY “KRISTEN”

Wish I would’ve seen this stuff before I placed my order yesterday. Just the package itself didn’t catch my eye, but seeing it in use makes me want some….want some BAD. If you’d like to order some ~ maybe throw it in with that MME mega kit ~ click on “I’m a Memory Works Consultant” at the top of this page.

If you’re not a shopper, I hope you enjoyed the layouts anyway. Aren’t they gorgeous? Kristen is such a great photographer and I love the way she used all of the MME products, not just the chipboard. I like going straight to the manufacturer’s galleries when I have a certain product I’m itching to use. They give such wonderful ideas.

Pink Paislee Warehouse Sale: Here’s What’s in the Box

Well, this is probably anticlimactic, since you’ve already seen The Box contents HERE. But I took photos of what I got and will post them anyway, along with the retail price of each item so you can get an idea of HOW worth it this purchase is. {I have rounded the prices up by 1 cent for ease of use, and did not show prices on my favorites at the bottom if they were already included in a prior photo}.

(7) sets of cardstock letter stickers {retail $2 each}

IMG_0963

(7) sets of rub-ons in black and silver {retail $4 each}
(1) spiral sticker book, 191 pieces {retail $4.50}

IMG_0964

(1) set of rub-ons {retail $4}
(2) sets of acrylic stamps {retail $14 each}

IMG_0965

(2) sets of chipboard shapes {retail $5.50 each}
(2) ribbon assortments {retail $5 each}
(2) brad assortments {retail $4 each}

IMG_0966

(1) set of Topsiders, chipboard shapes with matching die cuts {retail $7.50}

IMG_0967

(7) shaped papers {retail $1 each}

IMG_0969

(4) papers from “Sweet Cakes” {retail $.70 each}

IMG_0973

(6) papers from “Tinsel Town” {retail $.70 each}
(1) “Paislee Postcards” {retail $.70}

IMG_0974

(3) papers from “Spring Fling” {retail $.70 each}

IMG_0975

(6) papers from “Office Lingo” {retail $.70 each}

IMG_0976

(6) papers from “Pop Fashion” {retail $.70 each}

IMG_0977

(5) papers from “Vintage Moon” {retail $.70 each}

IMG_0979

(4) transparencies/clear overlays (!) {retail $3 each}

IMG_0971

(1) die cut sheet {retail $2}
(1) “Paislee Postcard” {retail $.70}

IMG_0972

(1) sheet of paper {retail $.70}
This is my favorite sheet of regular paper. My kids have been eating orange cream popsicles this summer, so this paper was just made for me.

IMG_0980

(1) sheet of shaped paper {retail $1}
This is my favorite shaped paper. Love the scallops and the lines for journaling…

IMG_0982

My favorite acrylic stamps. These make me very happy :)

IMG_0984

My favorite set of letter stickers. I love the bright color and this is one of my favorite letter sticker fonts ever. I just wish it included punctuation (brackets, asterisks, etc.) like some of their other lines do.

IMG_0985

My favorite set of rub-ons…so classy looking.

IMG_0986

(1) sheet of paper {retail $.70}
This is the only thing in the entire box that I don’t care for. Just not my style although the colors are great.

IMG_0981

This is the sneak peek of one of their new lines for CHA, “Twilight.”
IMG_0968

This was the only double-sided sheet of the bunch. It has a distressed black polka-dot on the back. I wonder if all their new lines will be double-sided? Not that there’s any doubt which side of THIS paper I’ll be using. Isn’t it cool?

If you’re now a Pink Paislee convert like I am, or have always loved them, HERE is a link to sneak peeks for the CHA-Summer releases later this month. I have to say, this kit totally converted me. Prior to this, all I had of PP was about 3 sheets of paper and some transparencies that I got in a monthly Memory Works kit. My LSS or any store around me has never sold PP, so I had NO idea how rockin’ it was! But seeing how cute it all is and what great quality, they are now in my top 5 favorite scrapbooking companies.

If you’re on the fence about this warehouse sale, I would definitely recommend buying it. I haven’t done the math but there is CLEARLY a huge value here. Just the 2 sets of acrylic stamps alone account for 1/2 the price of the entire box including shipping {$28 of $55}. They shipped very quickly and it was packed very well, nothing damaged. But you’d better hurry….SALE ENDS THIS FRIDAY, JULY 9!!

Pink Paislee, Shoppin’, and Croppin’

I got the box! I got the box! Pink Paislee box that is. By the time I got home yesterday with it, it was too dark to take photos. So, I just took pictures this morning and now I have to work all day. I will edit the photos and get everything posted tonight, so check back tomorrow.

I also hit Tuesday Morning and Michaels while in “the big city” yesterday. Look for posts about those stores later this week.

Otherwise, I’m preparing for my crop this Friday/Saturday. It’s the first one I’ve done since my “hiatus” from Memory Works from September 2008 til March 2009. I only have a few people signed up each day but enough to juuuuust break even on the room rental. If I don’t get any more attendees, I’ll lose money on the food/drinks and prizes. I don’t anticipate there being very many MW orders placed either. Have I said this economy sucks? Cuz it does. When a scrapper can’t even afford to go to a crop and buy a few goodies for her stash, something is DEFINITELY wrong. And, yeah, that’s what I’m hearing from my friends….they can’t even afford the crop fee right now much less doing any shopping. At least my mama will be cropping along side me both days, and I’ll get to see a few friends I haven’t talked to in a while, so it’ll be a fun weekend either way :)

See ya, homies!

Pink Paislee, Oh How You Torture Me…

I AM IN A SPECIAL KIND OF HELL.

No, I did not get my Pink Paislee box today. Because I went to the post office to pick it up….and they were closed. Due to the 4th of July holiday.

I’m in the kind of hell they send you to when you order THIS box of goodies from PINK PAISLEE, one of your favorite scrapbooking companies ever, and then hold the box that should rightfully be yours like some kind of scrappy hostage behind the locked doors and silver fold-down screen of a federal building.

But I’m not bitter.

Okay, to cheer myself up {or torture myself, depending on how you want to look at it…}, I’ve found OTHER ladies who have received THEIR Pink Paislee box and will share them now. As I sit here without my box. But that’s okay, ladies, you go ahead and enjoy your boxes. Really. I don’t mind. At. All.

Okay, here we go….

Gorgina from JUST TOO RANDOM blog posted hers HERE… she posted 4 pix over there.

Rebecca at PETEY’S PAGES blog posted her loot HERE…and here are her pix….

Rebecca also posted a list of all the things she got in her Pink Paislee box, and shows the new CHA sneak peak paper…go see on her blog.

HERE is where my AMR friend Julie posted about her box. She has lots of photos and even separated the goodies by line. Great post…go check it, home slice.

Okay. I can’t decide if that made me feel better or worse. But I did it for you ‘cuz you said you wanted to see pictures. I would do anything for you, really I would. You are my sistas from anotha’ motha’.

Hey, if YOU ordered a Pink Paislee warehouse sale box, let us know if you’ve received it or not. If ya did, leave a linkee to your blog so we can come drool…

Go to YouTube and Search “Scrapbook Haul”

You will find videos like THIS, THIS, and THIS. I love it. This is a girl totally after my own heart, LOL! There are other videos on scrapper’s “hauls,” too. After you search “scrapbook haul” and get your list of results, then use the drop down menu in the top middle to Sort by Newest. Just so you get the more recent ones….don’t want to get all excited about rushing down to Tuesday Morning for a great deal you saw….only to find out it was posted in August 2007, LOL.

Happy watching! And thanks ABBY for the first two linkees…you know me too well :)

And I shall leave you with a LAUGH….

Memory Works Order is in Da’ House!!

Yippy skip! My latest MEMORY WORKS order arrived last weekend. They always send things in these 13×13 boxes with lots of padding so nothing gets crushed or bent. That’s one thing I really like. This is a mix of items for myself, and things I’m going to sell.

IMG_0911

Here’s a bunch of Cosmo Cricket cardstock stickers, rub-ons, and the free Cosmo Cricket tie I got from Memory Works as a promotional item.

IMG_0912

Finally! I got some BO BUNNY “ABBY ROAD.” Ever since I saw THIS layout by Chrispea, I’ve been wanting some. I’m totally going to scraplift that.

IMG_0914

—–

IMG_0925

And then there’s BO BUNNY “CALYPSO” for all those fun summer layouts. We have a pool, we go to the lake and the ocean all summer, and we barbeque a lot. This looks like the perfect line for me, don’t you think?

IMG_0915

This is the back side and closer look at two of the papers. These especially rock, in my opinion.

IMG_0916

This is the cover sheet thingee from the CRATE PAPER “BLUE HILL” theme set {oops, no linkee, it’s already sold out! you gotta’ move quick around here, LOL}. I just luuuurve this color combination. Have you ever seen Crate Paper in person? It is THE best quality patterned paper. It’s cardstock thick and has a slight texture to it. It feels so luxurious…ROWR…

IMG_0917

You get two of each paper and I alternated both sides so you can see them both. For instance, from the left, there are two sheets of that paper with the teal/peach pattern on one side and the solid teal on the other.

IMG_0918

Here is the rest of the stuff I got in this special “retreat” pack, i.e. leftover class kits or things sold at the Memory Works retreat in June 2009. This was a great deal…all this Crate Paper stuff in one pack for $17.50.

IMG_0919

This was also a special from the MW retreat…a birthday card set from the BASIC GREY “CUPCAKE” line. I’m going to offer them as make-n-takes at my crop. {No linkee here either, already sold out. Sheesh, glad I ordered when I did!}

IMG_0920

And now my whining about not having any COSMO CRICKET “EARLY BIRD” will cease because it now holds it’s rightful place in my stash. Sweeeeeet!

This the front side of the papers in the theme set….

IMG_0921

…and this is the back side of those same papers.

IMG_0923

This is the Early Bird ELEMENTS and STICKERS. I got 2 of everything ~ 1 for me, 1 to sell. Again, loving the color combo, and those cherries are so stinkin’ cute. I’ve seen lotsa inspiration on various blogs for how to use this line and I can’t wait to get started.

IMG_0924

It’s like Christmas in July, I tell ya’. What’s funny is I get the same amount of joy from receiving the items I’m going to keep and those I’m going to sell to customers. I don’t mind selling products that I have in stock and may really love … but I get to touch them first ;-)

Pink Paislee is on it’s way to me…

Remember the Pink Paislee goodie box I talked about HERE? Well, I just got a shipping receipt and it’s on it’s way here! It left Kansas City, MO today. Whoo hoo! Come to mama! It should be here in the next couple days. Don’t you want to know what’s in it??? Don’t worry, I’ll show you, I promise.

ETA 7/1/09: Kristen at the EVERYDAY CREATIVENESS blog ordered the Pink Paislee box and received hers. Here is what she got:

Kristin lives in Switzerland. Erika lives in California. What is wrong with this picture? Hee hee, just giving her a hard time ‘cuz I’m jealous. Thanks for taking a pic, Kristen, so we could see what’s in the box!

Cropping, Journaling, Inking and Decisions…

I went to a crop Saturday, the one I talked about HERE. Only 4 of us ended up being able to go. I talked more than I cropped, and we stopped to eat twice (lunch/dinner) so I didn’t get much done. I completed 5 pages and started a 6th, and I was there from about 11:30 to 9. One thing I did different this time is that I promised myself I would get the journaling done AT the crop. I can’t tell you how many unfinished layouts are sitting on my desk from past crops, that were done, they “just need the journaling.” Ya’ got any of those on your desk? I mean, they’re, like, 30 minutes of effort away from being in a scrapbook for everyone to enjoy and yet…they’re on my desk. Why is journaling something I put off? I really do like to write, it’s not that. It’s like I lose my mojo to work on that layout once I leave the crop. But anyhow, that’s why I forced myself to journal these layouts and I’m glad I did. They are going straight into the album, baby!

Another new thing I tried was a technique that’s been around awhile but I’m always late to the party. I had a white Bazzill background, and I laid out the title of my layout with letter stickers (a block style of cardstock sticker alpha by American Crafts; $1 from Big Lots, LOL!). Then I went over the title in a circular motion with deep turquoise chalk ink by Martha Stewart (it’s just like the kind by COLORBOX). Then I removed the stickers and, voila! The white Bazzill showed through the turquoise ink and it looks rad. The only problem was some bleeding around about three of the letters, but it’s not that noticeable. At least, that’s what my sweet crop friends told me, LOL! I learned my lesson, though…make sure those suckers are stuck down pretty well before you rub the ink on. I like this technique so much, I used it again when I started that 6th layout. I used a different kind cardstock alpha sticker, made sure the letters were stuck down really good, and it came out great.

The Memory Works “party” part of it didn’t work out because, like me, everyone is broke, LOL! The hostess ordered some things and I’m going to split shipping with her and throw in something with her order. I can’t decide….the new Basic Grey ‘Junebug’ or ‘Lemonade’ (see them HERE and HERE), or Little Yellow Bicycle ‘Traveler’ (which I shared HERE). Tough decision. If you could get something from these lines, what would you get?

I’ve also been eyeing this for a while…THE COTTAGE Theme Set by Scrap Within Reach, which is a company that’s new to me and I have nothing of theirs yet. I’m curious what the quality is like/what it’s like in person. I love the colors and it seems a very versatile set to work with. And the price is good ~ you get six 12×12 sheets of double-sided patterned cardstock paper for $5.75, so less than a dollar a sheet for double-sided cardstock PP…not bad.

Yeah, decisions, decisions…

New: “Junebug” by Basic Grey @ Memory Works

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

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

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!

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!

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

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?

IMG_0894

IMG_0893

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

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!

IMG_0878

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.

IMG_0880

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.

IMG_0881

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?

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:

—————–
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.
——————

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….