Monday, April 27, 2015

Fancy That Layout from Donna

Hi Donna Coughlin here for Inspiration Station in Stafford, Ct and I would love to share this layout I did using MME new line called "Fancy That". The colors in this line are beautiful and delicate and not only can be used for a wedding, but for a baby or a girlish layout. But what is really super about this line are the embellishments and accessories which are amazing! They have everything possible to match the paper. This is also great for project life albums because of all the embellishments you have to choose from.

The picture is of my granddaughter Sadie, who was born last year. The black journaling card was perfect to add the journaling with a white pen from Marvy. and the title came from the assorted die cuts/ephemera which blended in perfectly with the paper.  The transparency frame with the gold frame and banner going across was a great way to dress up the picture. 

I LOVE to dress up embellishments and make clusters out of them. Here I took from the MME Fancy That line I started with the lace doily from the Die cut pack and took the heart and sweet from the chipboard pack, and added a brad. Under the doily I used a tag I cut from QuicKutz Pocket Scrap and  Dies - Love and used the rub-on's from MME and the little white sticker with the gold heart I was in the sticker pack. I also used Hero arts Pearls and Gems.  

 These cute little chipboard buttons were dressed up with a small piece of twine and I added a brad.
This beautiful corner was also in the  QuicKutz Pocket Scrap Dies. After I cut it I realized I needed to darken it a little, so spritzing it with some Tim Holtz Distress Spray - Tattered Rose gave me the correct color I wanted. Simply by added a brad dressed it as well. Also the back side of this sheet of paper was embossed and if you look closely you can see the leaves coming through the pink side of this paper.

 Added some more of the Hero Arts Pearls and Gems to some of the flower centers on the chipboard as well as on the patterned paper, just a little touch here there goes a long way!

Products Used:
MME paper, chipboard, brads, assorted die cuts/ephemera, rub-on's, foiled journal cards, transparency, and 6 sheet sticker pack.
Hero Arts Pearls & Gems
Tim Holtz Distress Spray - Tattered Rose
QuicKutz Pocket Scrap Dies - Love
Marvy Reminisce White Pen
Bo Bunny Shadow Dot (gray)
white cardstock
Thanks for stopping by and be sure to stop in at Inspiration Station and check out all the latest and greatest scrapbook supplies!

Friday, April 24, 2015

A busy week ahead

I'm going to need to eat my wheaties to get through this next week; There's a lot going on.  I hope you will be able to join us for some or all of the events!

Tomorrow (April 25) is our Pocket Page Meet up.  If you are interested in Project Life or any of the many spin offs of the concept - this is a time for you to come in and meet like minded people and work on your projects.  The group has evolved over the past year and a half or so, so there are different people each month.  Some people actually work on getting their memories into the pages but often times it a time to sort photos and products, share ideas, play with new techniques and of course - SHOP!  The meet up is free but due to space limitations we do ask that you pre-register.

On Sunday (April 26) we are having our first ever Rent a Space Craft Tag Sale.  It has been a number of years since we offered a tag sale event, frankly because it was just so much work.  But this time we are doing things differently.  Each participant will handle their own table, merchandise and sales.  This shifts the work load off of us so we can be more available to help shoppers and answer questions.  We have over 15 tables of goodies to be sold off at bargain prices - and that's just the vendors!  We will also have tables in the classroom for our own merchandise that we have marked down to move out.  Because this is a different set up than in the past there are some things we need you to keep in mind:

  • Only Vendors will be allowed to enter before 11am.  No exceptions.
  • Vendors must arrive by 10 am to unload and set up.  Terry will direct you to enter the driveway, unload at the back corner, and then exit by way of the post office driveway to go park your car up the road.  You will need to move your vehicle quickly so we can move the cars through without delay.  If you have said you will bring your own table, please arrive by 9:30.
  • Each table/vendor is a separate "shop".  Important - you must pay for your purchases (CASH  only) at each separate table before moving to the next one.  You can not gather items together and carry them around.  Please bring small bills and change and be patient as each vendor tallies your purchases.
  • Any purchases made inside the store, regular and sale merchandise must be paid for at the register (we can do a single transaction for everything).
  • All sales are final on sale merchandise.
  • Vendors:  You will be outside the entire time - Please dress appropriately - Mother Nature has been known to be very fickle.  You may need a hat and sunscreen or you may need a parka and gloves.  It's anyone's guess!  Please make sure your merchandise is securely packaged.  Paper or other lightweight items may blow around if the wind picks up - Boxes & bins can be your friend. Bring some bottled water or snacks.  You will be working hard!
  • Everyone - Bring more small bills and change than you think you will need!  It is a Sunday and we don't have a way to get you change. (Store purchases may be made with checks/credit cards as well).
  • EVERYONE - PLEASE - Be Kind, Be Patient and Be Courteous.  We are all crafter's looking for deals and trying to have fun. 


Later this week - On Tuesday we have the Masculine Card class from 10am-noon.  One of the biggest requests we get is for ideas for the men/boys in our lives.  This is a perfect class for that.  Please bring your class kit: Scissors, adhesive (tape runner, glue dots, glue stick, foam dots), Colored pencils or markers, and a Brown ink pad and applicator.  

You MUST call to sign up by Sunday so I can make up the kits - we only have 2 spots left!

(Please note the photo says 6-8pm as well but there are no sign ups for that time slot so we will not be holding it).

On Friday, May 1 we are having our Trade Show After Party!

Join us from 5:30 - 8pm and see all of the fabulous samples we made in classes and workshop when we attended a trade show a few weeks ago.  There will be demonstrations, prizes and refreshments.  We will have sign up sheets for future classes and we will take pre-orders for upcoming products.  The event is FREE but we do ask you to call or message us and RSVP so we can plan the food and prizes.  Call the store at (860) 684-2641

All that is just one week?  Aye, I am going to need a vacation!  I really hope you will make the time to come and visit us.  It has been a long, cold , lonely winter and we really have missed seeing you all.  

I hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Design Team Layout

Check out a great layout by Sarah of our Design Team.  She is using the Simple Stories Enchanted Line.
Love you to the moon.

The collection is currently out-of-stock but we do have it on order and we can take orders for it so we can get it to you as soon as it comes back in.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Spring Trade Show and Education Event - Recap part two

If you are just joining me you can read part one HERE

So are you ready to hear about he second day?

Remember, due to lack of planning I had to drive up in the morning; but since it was a Saturday traffic was light and I arrived in time for my first class at 8:30am.

My first class was with Maya Road.  It was a very cute shadow box with lots of fun embellishments.  They have an adorable set of glitter in glass vials that I wanted to buy just for the bottles.  If you are interested in doing this as a class let me know and I will order the kits.  The nice thing is it comes with a full set of chipboard so you could do a different word, like "Hope" if you want.

Next up was a mixed media class sponsored by The Crafter's Workshop and taught by Cheryl Bogioli who is scheduled to be at The Inspiration Station on May 12.  We used a canvas album cover and stenciled on it with embossing paste, sprays and paint.  It was a fun but very messy class. just the beginning of the abuse my hands would suffer this weekend.

Lunch was again underwhelming.  A pizza buffet of bland frozen pizza. Dessert was something resembling chocolate cool whip topped with a slice of strawberry.  I was thankful I had a yogurt in the cooler of my car.

The afternoon started with a class at 12:30.  Jenn Shurkus taught the class for Lawn Fawn and we made a bunch of really cute cards.  I really love Lawn Fawn products, they are so cute and easy to color. We did some with Copics and some with Distress ink as a  watercolor. Here are 3 of the 5 cards we made in class (I didn't have time to finish the other two).

At 2:15 it was into a class with Fancy Pants.  The owners were very sweet and we did a cute Instagram album/brag book. I have not carried much of their line in the past but I am looking into their summer release because it is very cute.

The next class was Graphic 45.  They have such beautiful papers and they always have unique was of using them. They used their baby line, and took out the most beautiful florals and created this window pane shadow box. Isn't it gorgeous?

So after 4 very intense classes in one day you would think we would get a little time to recover, right?  Oh NO!  Saturday night is the legendary"Sample Making Frenzy".  

Imagine being given 3 hrs to go into a room with 40 or so vendors and trying to do make and take projects at each one...  It is impossible to do!  But - we try!  The rep group who sponsors the show does their best to keep our energy up by running a dessert buffet down the center of the room. Still, there is no way we can get to everyone so I start by scouting the room and looking for the tables who have products we carry so I can bring back ideas.  Next I look for the vendors who I WANT to bring in, to get a chance to play with the products before deciding; because remember, we still haven't gotten to the trade show portion of the weekend yet!

So I stopped by and saw my friend, Ken Oliver, and his Color Burst paints (very cool!) We also talked about having him return to the store to teach a class or two and are looking toward the summer (June or July).

Visited with Elizabeth Craft Designs and fell in love with Karen Burniston's new barn yard collection.

By the way - I spoke with Karen Burniston and we have tentatively scheduled to have her come here and teach the weekend of June 13-14.  I do not have a set day or time yet, but I will let you know as soon as I do.  We are looking at a class and hopefully also a demo if time allows.

Other tables I stopped at and made samples included: Sizzix, Impression Obsession, Ranger (Wendy Vecchi has new Archival inks and powders), BoBunny, Little B, and Stampendous who has the cutest pop up Kitten and Puppy stamps & dies along with new House Mouse for summer.

After the frenzy, I headed back to my room with the intention of checking my email and preparing orders for the show, but it didn't happen.  As soon as I climbed into the bed I crashed, right there under the pile of catalogs!

Sunday was the trade show during the day, I spent some time talking to several vendors and placing orders. I loved the graduation products from Impression Obsession. 

 I thanked many would had been very generous with products in their classes and got a little silly (ok. maybe very silly ) with the guys in Ken Oliver's booth.

So at the end of the show I was pretty wiped out.  I skipped dinner to spend time chatting with Kim, the owner of Kept Creations in Mass.  Then it was on to another workshop - Yes! Sunday night from 6:30-9pm I had a workshop with Sizzix.  Again, they were generous with the goody bag and we each got a precision cutting plate and a die brush tool.  I was also lucky enough to win an extended magnetic base plate as a door prize.

By the time I was done I was exhausted, but the fact that I skipped dinner was catching up with me so I made a quick run to McD before bed and picked up an extra yogurt parfait to put in the ice bucket because, well, breakfast at the hotel left a lot to be desired and my class with Dyan Reaveley started at 8am!

We had a chance to play with her new paints and stencils and get very messy.  The paints are very fast drying so they are perfect for art journals.  That is one reason I don't like to art journal - I am too impatient to dry between steps and with her paints and her application technique that is really not an issue.

After another awful lunch service, we moved into another room for our afternoon workshop with Tim Holtz.

Tim is always a great teacher and gives wonderful tips for using products.  Did you know you can use his Tiny Attacher stapler anywhere on a page?  Come to the After-Party on May 1st and I'll show you how!  Mario was there, of course, and I have to say he is one of the sweetest men in the industry.  He is the force behind all of the prep work that goes into Tim's classes and makes them run so smoothly.  This is the project we made in class.
That was it.  I was beat. I didn't hang around since I needed to head back on the Mass Pike during rush hour traffic. I have to say it was a wonderful weekend.  The promoters did an excellent job.  The vendors were wonderful and all of the classes I took were worthwhile.  I also appreciated the chance to network with other store owners and share ideas.

So that is my recap.  I really hope you will come and join us at our Trade Show After Party on Friday, May 1 from 5:30 - 8pm.  You will see everything is person, including the stuff I didn't show here.  Don't forget, Kim also came up and took several classes so those projects will be at the store then too.

As always, your comments are appreciated so I know that people actually read my long-winded essay!
See you soon.

Friday, April 17, 2015

This week's Design Team projects

I wanted to put links to all of this weeks project in one place, since I know many of you do not see our updates on Facebook.  If you would like updates more often please go there and "like" our page and then check the box to "get notifications".  Facebook has changed a lot of things and they no longer show things in your news feed unless you occasionally interact with our post (like, comment and share). So PLEASE  - like, comment & share!

Donna's mini travel book can be found HERE

Sarah's layout for the week is HERE.

And Patty's ATC project can be found  HERE

Also - Be on the lookout for our newsletter - It will give you information about our upcoming Craft Tag Sale and classes.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spring Trade Show and Education Event - Recap part one

One of my favorite things about being a papercraft store owner is having the chance to take classes from industry professionals. We have a rep group that puts on a trade show and education event in the spring and fall and I think is is better than going to the CHA shows.  It is much smaller and it is devoted to companies that sell products for papercrafters as opposed to other crafts like fabrics, jewelry, etc.

Because it is smaller and more focused, we have a chance to really speak to the vendors and learn about their products rather than getting a 60 second canned script in a booth as we fly by.  Many of the vendors teach classes and workshops and often times provide us with samples to take back to out stores to show our customers.

This past weekend was the spring show and I had a packed schedule of classes and workshops; and although it was a lot of fun, it was also exhausting so it has taken me a few days to catch up.  I think I can now share some of what I did with all of you and see what you think of the products and projects.  Please leave a comment below to let me know what you like.

Friday was my first full day of classes. We started at 8:00am with an overview of some of the vendors and load our goody bags with fun samples of product to try. It's a great way to test out new adhesives, look at the quality of the products we may not already carry, and get a peek at some new lines that are going to be released.

At 9:00, my first class started with Tombow.  Marie Browning, CZT, who has written several books geared toward Zentangle, was the instructor of a class called Pencil Potential.  She is a great teacher and I really enjoyed the class and learned a few new techniques that I plan to re-teach.

At 10:45, I was in my next class with Little B.  If you don't know who Little B is, you will.  They produce punches, dies, 3-d embellishments and washi tape.  In fact, if you have bought any washi tape from us in the past 6 months - it was probably from Little B!  Their products are great and affordable. They were very generous in class and let us each take home FIVE of their punches!

They gave us a short break for lunch - we won't talk about the food other than to say it was hotel food. We were not impressed.

At 1:00pm I went into a Copic class taught by Marianne Walker.  It was called Coloring Line Drawings and it was really amazing.  We started with a photo that had been converted into a line drawing on the computer to somewhat resemble a coloring book image and then she taught us to match the colors in the photo and color it to get a finished work of art.  I was very skeptical when she gave us a photo of a black & white dog (Rupert) and told us that would be our project... Black & White are two of the hardest colors to render in marker!  But when all was said and done; I was slightly impressed with myself.

Moving on the the next class - I was already feeling like it was 7:00 at night - at 2:45 I had a class from Imagine Crafts (Tsukenieko). It was an art journaling class that was very chaotic.  They provided a bunch of products I had not worked with before like the Stazon Glaze and Creative Medium and Pico Embellisher but because of the limited time and variety of mediums we really didn't finish anything. I will need to go back and play with the products on my own and see how I really like them.  Kim took a similar class with them to make Mixed Media cards and she really enjoyed it, so I am leaving the messy stuff to her.

At 4:30 (yes, it's only 4:30 and I am already dragging), I was able to take a class with Heidi Swapp.  In all these years I have never met her before and she really is a very nice person.  We were given a bunch of her Memorydex products to work with and she had everyone in the room crying when she told a story about why she felt memory keeping was so important.  Not kidding - there wasn't a dry eye in the room.  

The concept of the Memorydex is not new - we did altered Rolodex files years ago - but her take on it was really great.  By using her "dex" cards or re-purposed Project Life cards, she adds one memory to a card each night.  It can be a quote, a quick note about what happened that day or something she is thankful for.  It then goes in the Memorydex behind the monthly divider and once a week she adds small photos if she took any to the mix as well. So similar to Project Life but on a smaller scale and more about the journaling.  

Is this day ever going to end?  No.  It's just time for a break for dinner.  We couldn't handle another round of hotel food so I tagged along with several other store owners, including Tracie from Papercraft Clubhouse, to a quick dinner at Panera Bread.  Then it was back to work.

My evening workshop was with Impression Obsession.  The owner, Mitra, is an absolute doll.  I met her years ago and have taken classes from her at every show.  She even came to teach at The Inspiration Station a few years ago.  The project was a great Summer Beach Box Card and thankfully she pre-cut all of the tiny die pieces for us so all we had to do was stamp, color and glue.  Which was hard enough after such a long day!  Not only did she do all of that work she was also incredibly generous and gave us EVERY die and stamp used in the project so we could go home and re-teach it! I have added it to the calendar for June (it will take me that long to die cut all the pieces for you!).

Class ended at 10pm and you would think my day was over - but no.  Because I was late calling to book the hotel, it was sold out so I had to drive home... then be back in the morning for my next class.

To be Continued...

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Crazy Weekend and I am falling behind!

Hi Everybody-
If you have been following me on Facebook you know that I was at a Trade Show & Education Event for 5 days up in the Boston area.
I have been completely overwhelmed with classes and projects, oh and that horrible thing known as Income Tax season...  So I am totally behind on posting.

My plan for today was to write up a blog post detailing the weekend events, but then I came into work and it went out the window!

I also never got around to posting Donna's Project for the week; which is awesome by the way!  So here's the link to that and hopefully the trade show post will get done tonight (or tomorrow).

Hello World Travel Album

Monday, April 06, 2015

Donna's Layout using Kaisercraft Off the Wall

Good morning!

Today I get to share another design team project from Donna. She made a great layout using Kaisercraft's Off the Wall line.  I love this line because it is so hard to find a line that works well for boys of ALL ages - especially teens and young adults.

Donna did a terrific job layering paper and stamps and I love the paint splatters and rings added to give extra texture.

Visit her blog HERE and see all the details close up!

Friday, April 03, 2015

All I can say is WOW! Patty knocked it out of the park with her firsts Design Team project! I gave her the Graphic 45 Time to Celebrate collection because I knew it would be a good fit for her. I was right! (I love saying that smile emoticon ) Check out her video here:

Patty's You Tube

Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Sweet little Dream

Today is Sarah's first project for our Design Team.
I love what she's done with the products I sent her.  She has done a video on You Tube and that is posted on her blog as well.

Store Calendar

Class sample slideshow