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Archive | April, 2010

Paperclipping Roundtable #16: Implanted Under Your Skin

Paperclipping Roundtable episode #16 featured Noell, Izzy, Ali Edwards, Cathy Zielske and me talking all about how to use our social media content in our scrapbooking.

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To listen to this week’s episode, you can use the player embedded above [may not be visible to email subscribers], visit the Paperclipping Roundtable web page or to make things easy, you can use this link:

Subscribe for free to Paperclipping Roundtable on iTunes

That link will open in iTunes and take you to the subscribe page, and then you can click on the “subscribe” button.

Subscribing in iTunes is the best way to support Paperclipping Roundtable. Using iTunes is free, and subscribing is free. (If you don’t know how to use iTunes to subscribe, you can watch a video here that shows you how.)

Show Notes:

As Izzy mentioned in the episode, he has created a new “Intro to Video” course for video beginners. If you have an interest in learning some basic video fundamentals, this course will help.

The Paperclipping Roundtable audience can save $17 off the normal price of $50 with coupon code pcvideo, lowering the price to only $33 if you sign up by April 23, 2010!

You can learn more here.

The Panel:

Our Picks:

Here’s an example of a perfect Photopass picture from a Disney photographer that we were glad to have them there for:

I was there, insanely snapping away when Bridget met Santa at the Magic Kingdom in December. But I never managed to get her looking just right. The Disney Photopass photographer did…and now I have the perfect photo for my scrapbook page about her meeting with Santa.

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Ning Ends Free Social Network Offerings

Social network host Ning announced this past week that they will be ending their free level of service and transitioning to paid-only offerings.

Ning is a platform which allows users to create social networks in a way similar to services like Blogger & Typepad host blogs. Up until now, the company has offered a free level of service along with paid upgrades for additional services and service levels. On May 4th, Ning says it will be announcing a new fee structure that will not have a free option. Users of the free service level will be given 10 weeks to transition off of Ning to a different provider or upgrade their service.

The free level of service at Ning has been a popular host for small scrapbook hobby groups to utilize to congregate online. (A search of the term “scrapbook” on Ning yields 114 results, although not all those results are craft-related.) The majority of these groups have fewer than 50 members, and many of them have less than 20 users. Even a small charge will displace many of these boards off of Ning to other services, according to many of their owners.

Shawn Lahr, who owns the Nuts About Sketches board, summed up the situation of many of the free Ning network users:

I’ve had the board I believe 6-7 monhths. [sic] I think it has 30 or 40 members. It’s a board for my sketch site. I can not afford to pay for a message board, so they’ll have to delete it.

Several scrapbook companies also use Ning to host social networks. Among these are Pink Paislee, Unity Stamp Company, Graphic 45, and Reminisce. These companies, however, typically are already paying for some level of premium service from Ning, and so will not be as affected by the new fee structure.

As Pink Paislee’s Rebecca Cross told Scrapbook Update:

We use this community to interact directly with our consumers while providing them with a place to share their Pink Paislee projects and we are convinced this is an integral part of our marketing efforts. We were one of the first manufacturers in this industry to launch this type of community and we will continue to support this portion of our website for our fans.

One complaint of both the free and premium users of Ning has been having their boards overrun by spammers, a concern voiced to Scrapbook Update by Graphic 45′s Candy Rosenberg. The fee structure changes may be the last straw to push those users to go elsewhere.

So where else is there for displaced Ning users to go that offers similar services for free? The following options are among the ones that Scrapbook Update has found being discussed in various places as replacements for Ning’s free service level:

At least one scrapbook group with 1500 members, Jennifer Bliss Community, has already begun the migration to the Spruz platform. [Note that the above are not recommendations of Scrapbook Update but just sharing suggestions made in other resources.]

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Eco Green Crafts Lives Earth Day Everyday (Giveaway)

Today is Earth Day, so everyone is talking and thinking “green”. What can we do to save the planet? But one crafts company lives and works by the principles of Earth Day everyday.

Eco Green Crafts debuted to heavy buzz (heavy enough to be a Scrapbook Update hot pick) at CHA Winter 2010. The company was co-founded by Julia Andrus and Susan Sepaniak. Andrus’s “green” motivation comes from being a survivor of a rare form of cancer, which lead her to believe we need to get rid of the toxins in our environment. As a dedicated crafter, she wanted chemically safe crafting supplies to use. Sepaniak brings to Eco Green a wealth of expertise about craft mediums, having formerly been Director of Product Development at Plaid.

The color palette introduced by Eco Green at CHA Winter 2010 was described to me as based on several influences: 1963 fashion colors, Royal French, Biblioteque, and Country French. Basic metals were also included.

Eco Green’s ink pads are an excellent example of the company’s commitment and attention to detail in their “green” mission. During my visit to their booth, I was told the inks are vegetable-based, the bottom of the case is made of recycled plastic, and that the rounded shape of the pads is designed to be ergonomically correct. Eco Green Crafts offers both dye and pigment ink pads.

The company’s stamps are cling-mounted rubber. Their “green” feature is that since they are unmounted, they save wood. The stamps’ designs are steam punk and vintage styled. Eco Green also offers beads that are made of recycled glass, a very intriguing concept.

In keeping with the natural theme of the company, their color names are almost all drawn from nature: mushroom, sky, butternut, coral, etc.

Noell Hyman of Paperclipping.com (my co-host on Paperclipping Roundtable) taped a really inspiring demonstration in the Eco Green Crafts booth in Anaheim with Julia Andrus:

If you are reading this via an RSS or email subscription and can’t see the video, please click here to view it.

Would you like to craft in an eco-friendly way? You can win some of Eco Green Crafts’ eco-friendly acrylic paints on Scrapbook Update!

We’ve got a selection of their metallics, plus zucchini and mushroom that will go to one lucky reader:

How to Enter:

All you have to do to be one of the lucky winners is leave a comment on this entry before Midnight U.S. eastern time on Monday night, April 26th. (Note: If you are reading this post via an email or RSS subscription, click here and it will take you to the giveaway on the  Scrapbook Update website where you can fill out the comment form at the bottom of the article to enter.) Make sure you include your email address in the line reserved for it on the comment form (for your own protection, don’t put it in the text of the comment, where it will be visible to the public – just in the line labeled “email” in the form where only Scrapbook Update staff can see it). We will need it to notify you if you are a winner. Winners will be drawn by random drawing from all eligible entries. One entry per person.

Good luck everyone! And happy “green” crafting!

Picture Perfect: 129 expert tips for shooting stellar portraits (by Becky Novacek, Elisha Snow, and Kelly Noel)

Campaigners Seeks Cricut Demonstrators

Cricut Lovers – Get Paid for your Passion!

Campaigners/ASM is seeking Crafters to conduct in-store demonstrations on the Cricut Machine at several major retail locations in your area.  This is a part time position which will last 2-3 months and possibly through the end of the year, depending on the schedule.  The position pays $15.00 per hour and weekend availability is a must.  Training will be provided.

The ideal candidate is passionate, self-motivated, committed and driven to succeed. This person should also have strong communication skills with the confidence to develop strong ties with retail staff and trusting relationships with shoppers. They must possess excellent organizational skills and have the ability to complete assigned duties and responsibilities without direct supervision, on a daily basis.

As a Craft/Sales Specialist you will use your Crafting, Sales and Customer Service skills to conduct in-store demonstrations to generate excitement, brand awareness, and drive sales through event execution and promotions.  If you like to interact with people and enjoy crafts, then this opportunity is for you!

Job Duties/Responsibilities:

  • Conduct Product Demonstrations
  • Drive Sales
    • Train Consumers and Store Staff
    • Proactive Relationship Building with Store Staff

Desired Qualifications:

  • Results and action oriented
  • Professional demeanor, friendly, energetic, and customer service oriented
  • Acts as a strategic client advisor to store management to enhance retail relationships
  • Independent, self – motivated, and organized, while remaining flexible and adaptable
  • Creative, fun and enthusiastic.  Passionate.

If interested and would like to hear further details, please send an email with your city and state in the subject line (and photos of some of your craft work, if possible) to recruit@campaigners.com.

Campaigners has positions available in the following locations:

City State Zip City State Zip
Anchorage AK 99515 Durham NC 27713
Anchorage AK 99508 Greenville NC 27858
Dothan AL 36303 Grand Forks ND 58201
North Little Rock AR 72117 West Fargo ND 58078
Visalia CA 93277 Omaha NE 68116
Newington CT 06111 Freehold NJ 07728
Savannah GA 31406 Moorestown NJ 08057
Ankeny IA 50021 Mt Laurel NJ 08054
Davenport IA 52807 Princeton NJ 08540
Marion IA 52302 Las Vegas NV 89128
Sioux City IA 51106 Clifton Park NY 12065
West Des Moines IA 50266 Elmira NY 14903
Twin Falls ID 83301 Oklahoma City OK 73112
Bloomington IL 61701 Keizer OR 97303
Calumet City IL 60409 Ontario OR 97914
Orland Park IL 60462 Fairless Hills PA 19030
Peoria IL 61615 Harrisburg PA 17112
Springfield IL 62704 Philadelphia PA 19114
Goshen IN 46526 York PA 17403
Indianapolis IN 46229 North Charleston SC 29406
Indianapolis IN 46250 Rapid City SD 57703
Mishawaka IN 46545 Sioux Falls SD 57106
Elizabethtown KY 42701 Bee Caves TX 78738
Florence KY 41042 Burleson TX 76028
Lexington KY 40509 Conroe TX 77385
Paducah KY 42001 Denton TX 76205
Bel Air MD 21014 Frisco TX 75034
Ellicott City MD 21043 Garland TX 75040
Frederick MD 21702 Georgetown TX 78628
Glen Burnie MD 21060 Houston TX 77070
Hagerstown MD 21740 Humble TX 77338
Parkville MD 21234 Katy TX 77494
Waldorf MD 20601 Lewisville TX 75067
Battle Creek MI 49014 San Antonio TX 78257
Brighton MI 48116 San Antonio TX 78232
Brighton MI 48116 Windcrest TX 78239
Flint MI 48507
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Paperclipping Roundtable #15: The Mini Book Show

Paperclipping Roundtable episode #15 featured Noell, Ana, Stacy and I talking all about the how, when and why of mini-books!

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

To listen to this week’s episode, you can use the player embedded above [may not be visible to email subscribers], visit the Paperclipping Roundtable web page or to make things easy, you can use this link:

Subscribe for free to Paperclipping Roundtable on iTunes

That link will open in iTunes and take you to the subscribe page, and then you can click on the “subscribe” button.

Subscribing in iTunes is the best way to support Paperclipping Roundtable. Using iTunes is free, and subscribing is free. (If you don’t know how to use iTunes to subscribe, you can watch a video here that shows you how.)

Show Notes:

Promo code for the Big Picture Scrapbooking class, Colorful You: roundtable

The Panel

Product Picks

Here’s the layouts that I referred to in the show when I was talking about the color scheme I picked this week:

This is the digital layout, for an 8×8 photo book about my 2009 trip to CHA Winter (and Disneyland). This is actually just the left page of a two page layout.

Supply List – Page Template: Designer Digitals Create A Book Classic No. 9 by Katie Pertiet; Digital Elements: Amelie Kit by Sara Carling for ScrapArtist.com (no longer available); Fonts: American Typewriter, Apple Chancery.

This second layout is a 12×12 layout for my regular album:

Supply List – Patterned Paper: Autumn Leaves; Rub-on Alphabet: Making Memories (Beach); Cardstock Alphabet: Cloud 9 Designs; Brads: unknown (red), Marcella by Kay (pearl); Flower Die Cuts: Cricut Cartridge Graphically Speaking; Journaling Cards: October Afternoon Cherry Hill.

We also promised on the show to share mini-books that we’ve made. Some of mine I can’t share for privacy reasons, like the one in progress of my son and the digital one I did of my daughter and her classmates in pre-k. But here are a couple that I have done or in progress that I can share.

At CKU in 2005 we started a 6×6 album as one of the projects. When I got home I finished it up with all my pictures from the event. A mini-album was perfect for the series of disconnected snapshots I had from the event.

Probably my favorite mini-book is the one that I did that I entered in the Simple Scrapbooks Coolest Album Contest (in 2004?). Part of the reason that I love it is because it won the contest, but I also love it because it was a special time for our family – the album was of a family reunion of my mother-in-law’s family.

I don’t have the album, just a color copy of the pages in it, because I gifted it to my mother-in-law. But I can share scans of the book that it was in…

The layout at the top of the page, Main Street USA: California Style is also part of a mini-book that I am currently working on from my trip to CHA Winter 2009. It’s the first time I made it over to Disneyland so I figured it warranted special recognition!

The other book I have in progress right now is this one. I’m waiting to find the perfect set of pictures to go with it.

Supply List – Chipboard Album: BoBunny Press (Beach); Patterned Paper: Autumn Leaves, Daisy D’s, My Mind’s Eye; Paint: unknown (acrylics), Tim Holtz Distress Crackle Paint (Picket Fence); Stamp: Stamper’s Anonymous by Tim Holtz French Market; Other: Mudd Puddles Sand Paste (Malibu Beach).

Here’s everyone else’s mini-books:

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Provo Craft Acquired By BAML Capital Partners

Sorenson Capital, which purchased a majority stake in Provo Craft in 2005, has now sold a majority stake in the company to BAML Capital Partners. Sorenson Capital will retain a minority stake in the company, along with Provo Craft management.

BAML Capital Partners is the private equity group of Bank of America, that was created by the Bank of America and Merrill Lynch equity groups. As part of the acquisition, Provo Craft has entered into new credit arrangements that it says will facilitate its continued growth.

BAML Managing Director Brian Gorczynski focused on Provo Craft’s technology products as the real value of the acquisition:

We are excited to acquire this interest in Provo Craft. Jim Thornton and his outstanding management team have a commendable track record of developing successful technology products.

Other contents of the press statement about the acquisition also seemed to stress that the company sees itself as a technology company, focusing on the history of the Cricut line and the debut of the Cricut Cake. The announcement also indicated that Provo Craft “expects to announce additional product innovations later this year.”

Provo Craft had revenues of over $250 million in 2009. According to a 2009 article in Utah Business magazine, the company’s revenue has doubled (and profits gone up 500%) under the tenure of current CEO Jim Thornton. That article also emphasized that the company’s future lies in technology, saying Thornton “visualizes the company becoming a half-billion dollar enterprise within the next five years as it becomes one of the top technology brands.”

Want to stay up-to-date on all the latest scrapbook news?

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