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CHA PaperArts | Spellbinders Celebra’tions

Spellbinders unveiled a new collection at the CHA PaperArts show last week that wasn’t just new designs but a whole new direction for the company. The collection, Celebra’tions by Richard Garay, is a break from Spellbinders’ typical style in more ways than one.

Garay’s previous position was at Stampin’ Up!, and influences from that type of style and sales are definitely visible in the Celebra’tions line. Spellbinders’ usual style is very vintage and intricate. By comparison, the Celebra’tions line is simple, cute and fun – a look that could attract a whole new segment of customers to the company.

IMG_4459The line seems especially tailored for card makers, with die and stamp sets, embossing folders, and even its own color palette of ink pads and cardstock. It is, essentially, an entire self-contained program – similar to something that you would see in direct sales, and an easy foundation for teaching classes and helping launch beginners. Continue Reading →

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New Product: Heidi Swapp Project Life Kits!

Heidi Swapp and Becky Higgins have announced that they are working together to produce a line of exclusive Heidi Swapp signature Project Life kits for Michaels Stores.

Heidi-Swapp-Project-LifeThe partnership between Becky and Heidi is not exactly unexpected. The pair have known each other a very long time, and Heidi has been part of the American Crafts family, which Project Life has been drawing on to create signature kits, for some time now. In addition, Heidi has a long history of creating custom exclusive lines for Michaels, so it makes sense that they would be interested in an exclusive Project Life product line with her name on it. Continue Reading →

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Studio Calico Acquires Big Picture Classes

Studio Calico announced this morning that they have acquired online education platform Big Picture Classes.

Big Picture Studio Calico

l-r: Greg Foster & April Foster of Studio Calico, Stacy Julian, Kayce Rehn, Mark Seastrand.

Washington-based Big Picture Classes was founded in 2005 by Stacy Julian & Kayce Rehn, and quickly became known for offering online classes from the biggest names in the industry like Ali Edwards, Heidi Swapp, and Becky Higgins. (The company was originally called Big Picture Scrapbooking, but changed its name in 2010 to Big Picture Classes as part of a broadening of its mission to include a wider range of classes.) Until 2008, Julian also served as founding editor of Simple Scrapbooks magazine until stepping down from that role to focus on Big Picture. In 2012, Big Picture acquired ebook publisher Ella Publishing, which had been owned by Wendy Smedley and Angie Lucas, and also brought in former Creating Keepsakes publisher Mark Seastrand as CEO. Continue Reading →

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Ahni & Zoe, Creative Memories Closing Down

Ahni & Zoe by Creative Memories CEO Chris Veit informed the company’s consultants today that the company will be winding down operations in the next month.

AhniandZoelogoAfter filing bankruptcy in April 2013 for the 2nd time in less than five years, Creative Memories discontinued its traditional product line of bookcloth albums, tools, and white pages. The company was re-launched last fall under a new brand name – Ahni & Zoe – with a re-imagined and extremely limited product line that focused on the Fast2Fab album concept of using albums with pre-printed pages to achieve fast results. Continue Reading →

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CHA PaperArts Show: An Overview

With the demise of the long-running CHA Summer show in Chicago (which was transplanted to Las Vegas last year for its last iteration), the CHA PaperArts section needed a new show to promote and sell its critical third and fourth quarter holiday releases. Thus, the CHA PaperArts show was born!

The Venue

The new show was a completely re-imagined experience from the former summer show. The CHA PaperArts show was designed as a hotel-based show, with all events taking place under the roof of the Hilton Atlanta. The high-rise hotel sits in the heart of downtown Atlanta, in the neighborhood surrounding Olympic Park. From my room on the 13th floor, the view spread expansively across I-75, which was only a block away, to the Emory University building and other downtown highrises.

Atlanta skyline

Continue Reading →

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