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American Crafts Acquiring Die Cuts With A View Paper Division

American Crafts has announced that it is acquiring the paper division of competitor Die Cuts With A View (aka DCWV), which is well-known to many papercrafters for its paper pads sold under the Stacks brand name.

Provo, Utah-based Die Cuts With A View, which was founded twenty years ago by Nancy Hill, has large amounts of shelf space in national craft chains with their Stacks pads of patterned paper. Some of the pads are specialty paper featuring glitter and other decorative elements.

In addition to the DCWV paper crafts division, American Crafts has also acquired the company’s letter board product line.

In the announcement, American Crafts CEO Wayne Mitchell expressed the company’s excitement to have the Stacks brand under the American Crafts roof. “Over the years, Mike and Nancy Hill have done an outstanding job of building the amazing Stacks® brand,” says Mitchell. “Their products have influenced thousands of crafters’ creativity, and American Crafts is proud to continue their legacy by offering Stacks® and the letterboard to the crafting market.”

Mike Hill, CEO of Die Cuts with a View Acquisition Corp, said in the acquisition announcement that American Crafts will make a good home for building the DCWV brand’s future: “American Crafts is a company that’s well respected in the crafting industry, ” says Hill. “Over the years as the market landscape has changed, many wonderful crafting brands have found a soft landing place there, where they’ve continued and flourished. We expect that tradition will continue with the DCVW brand.”

DCWV Letterboard

DCWV Letterboard

The acquisition of the DCWV letterboard product gives American Crafts two letter board products, since Heidi Swapp launched a similar product at the January 2017 Creativation trade show. The design style of the two products, however, is drastically different. The Heidi Swapp boards, available in 3 sizes, are portrait shaped and all white, with an almost elegant look to their black and gold text elements (some of them in script). The wedding and party market appears to be a prime market for that product. In contrast, the DCWV letterboard has a landscape shape and less formal colors, with design elements (including trendy emojis and other graphic elements) available in a wide variety of colors.

Heidi Swapp Letterboard

Heidi Swapp Letterboard

The DCWV Home and Blue Moon Beads brands were not part of the acquisition by American Crafts. Those segments of Die Cuts With A View Acquisition Corp were purchased by New View, according to the announcement. (I believe this probably refers to New View Gifts, a Pennsylvania based gift and home decor company whose products are available from retailers such as Amazon, Wayfair, and Kohl’s. New View Gifts registered a new presence in Utah the day of the announcement of the DCWV sale.)

American Crafts will continue to produce paper crafts products under the DCWV brand, and many of the brand’s key designers and product developers will be continuing with the brand as it moves forward under American Crafts.

Retailers can begin ordering DCWV paper crafts products from American Crafts immediately, and shipping of DCWV products will begin from American Crafts’ warehouse after a 7-10 day transition.

American Crafts has been over the years acquiring an immense portfolio of recognizable paper crafts brands. They started slowly, with the acquisition of Pebbles in 2009 and then Crate Paper in 2011. Licensing deals were signed with Studio Calico in 2011 and Project Life in 2013. But then in 2013-2014, American Crafts went on what can only be described as a buying spree. Between July 2013 and June 2014, the company acquired Bazzill, We R Memory Keepers, Pink Paislee (& the Heidi Swapp license), and Imaginisce. After the licensing deal with Studio Calico ended in the past two years, it appears American Crafts is looking to expand its portfolio again, first purchasing Core’dinations brand from Darice earlier this year and now adding the DCWV brand.

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Update | Amazon, Prima, Jobs, Events, Trends, & More!

Losses. Condolences to the family and friends of Jeff Murphy, known to many in the industry after his thirteen years in sales at EK Success/Wilton Brands that ended last year. Murphy passed away last week in a hiking accident in Yellowstone National Park.

Openings. Hobby Lobby has set the (tentative) opening date of its new store in the Ozark Crossing strip mall in Harrison, AR for August 7th. The store is expected to hire between 30 and 50 workers.

Costs. Users of Intuit’s Quickbooks Online accounting software service are being notified about upcoming price increases that will go into effect in July for users. The price for the Quickbooks Online Plus level of service will increase from $39.99 to $50 per month. Suggestions for replacements include Sage, Xero, and Less Accounting.

Changes. Amazon has announced to affiliates that it is retiring the aStore tool in its affiliate program due to low usage and poor conversion rates on the tool. Starting on July 14th, new aStores can no longer be built, and on August 11th existing stores will no longer be able to be edited. The feature will be completely retired on October 27th, at which time all aStore links will redirect to the Amazon.com home page.

Ventures. Toronto-based Scraptime host Christine Urias is branching into food art, marketing a line of candy through her new company Sweet Artisan Candies. https://shop.amytangerine.com/subscribe

Designer Laura Bray is preparing to launch a line of stamps in her signature style later this month under the Laura K Bray Designs brand name, available through her website. To get a sneak peek of one of the set, visit her blog.

Events. AFCI President Mark Hill attended the 41st Japan Hobby Show put on by the Japan Hobby Association in April, and shares an interesting look at the event and trends seen at the show on the AFCI blog. Some of the trends seen may be regional while some may be harbingers of things to come in other parts of the world.

Alt Summit has announced their 2018 event dates. The 2018 Alt Summit will take place from February 26th-28th at the Saguaro Hotel in Palm Springs, CA. Registration begins on Wednesday, June 21st

Alt Summit 2018

Trends. Trend Curve is predicting that pink will be a hot trend for the Christmas holidays for 2018-2019. Also, Quilt Market’s e-insider has a look at trends from Spring Quilt Market for quilt fabric, which often shares design and color trends with scrapbook paper and embellishments.

Fun. Maybe it’s because he didn’t get the memo that scrapbookers think cats are trendy and cool…but whatever the reason, Garfield the Cat has been poking fun at scrapbooking.

Teams. Prima Marketing has design team calls open for their Design, Mixed Media & DIY, and My Prima Planner teams through June 30th. For information on how to apply for the teams, visit the Prima blog.

Jobs. The following industry positions are listed as open and taking applications:

Financial:

Sourcing:

Design:

Marketing:

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Design Team Call | Deflecto 6/23

For our readers’ convenience, Scrapbook Update publishes the full text of select design team calls, with the company name and deadline in the header.

To see a page listing all of these published calls, visit the Design Team Calls category of Scrapbook Update.


Deflecto Design Team Call

CALLING ALL CREATIVES: we don’t want to miss meeting you!

Deflecto is looking for rock stars to join our newest design team.

For more than 50 years, Deflecto has been helping people get organized in the office and at home. We’re looking for designers with a focus on *DIY, *Home Décor *Painting *Sewing/crochet/quilting/knitting *Fashion *Jewelry *Polymer Clay *Kids Crafts *Scrapbooking *Card Making *Mixed Media *Wedding Crafts/Events *Recycled crafts.

Deflecto Design Team perks:

• Each month you’ll get a gift box of amazing Deflecto products to use and develop into a project.

• Your creations will have the potential to be a featured project each month on our blog and you will be compensated if selected.

• You will have the ability to participate in Deflecto’s paid endorsement program.

• You may occasionally receive products from our partners.

• You will also receive sneak peeks of new Deflecto products.

Deflecto Design Team expectations:

The Deflecto products must be the primary focus of these projects. We want the benefits and functionality of the product to shine through.

• Post your monthly required designs with the permalink to your personal blog on the Deflecto Facebook group page by the first of each month; no later than the 5th. This is necessary to be eligible for endorsement consideration.

• Link to the Deflecto Blog on your blog/Facebook page and/or website.

• Take crisp, clear photographs of your projects in well-lit areas. Props and backgrounds are encouraged but keep it clean cut so readers aren’t distracted away from the project. If the product is clear or white use a colored background so the edges of the product can be seen.

• Be an ambassador for the Deflecto company and our product brands.

Design Team term is 12 months: September 1, 2017- September 1, 2018

How to apply:

Submit the following information, including links, to (Markhlee@mac.com) for review. Please include “Deflecto Design Team Call-out” in the subject line.

• Send us direct links to three or four of your best projects or you may send a general link to your blog or online gallery.

• We want our team members to take high quality photographs that show a good representation of their work with our products. We will also be reviewing your writing style and how you share information about the products you use. All work submitted must be original and created by you.

Please also include the following information in your e-mail:

• Your full name

• Preferred e-mail address; (please note: this design team call is open to USA only residents at this time)

• Phone number

• Address (where products would be shipped if selected)

• Blog Link

• Links to any additional places we might see your work

• Any other design teams you are currently a member of

• Your preferred crafting style (Are you primarily a card maker? Scrapbooker? Mixed Media Artist? Something else entirely?)

• If you currently teach classes or hold workshops, please provide any relevant information about them

• Short description of why you want to be on the Deflecto Design team

Endorsement program:

• Endorsements will be selected internally by our marketing department. Submissions will be judged based on project theme, creativeness, and quality of photos. If you have any questions please contact Mark Lee.

• We will pay a minimum $25.00 endorsement for projects selected to be featured on our website, blog, tradeshow booth and rep samples. If instructions are requested, an additional $25.00 will be paid. We will also authorize the minimum $25.00 endorsement for projects published via online magazines, books, etc.

• A $25.00 endorsement fee will be paid to designers whose projects are chosen for the monthly Designer Spotlight blog post.

The deadline for submission is June 23rd, 2017.

If chosen, you will be contacted no later than June 30th, 2017, and your 12 month term will commence September 1, 2017. Additionally, we’re always looking for guest designers. Simply note in your e-mail application that you would like to be considered for a guest position if this is your desire. We won’t contact potential guest designers at this time; but instead will keep those applications on file and contact you when a guest position is available.

If you have any questions prior to submitting your application, don’t hesitate to send Mark Lee an e-mail at markhlee@mac.com. We look forward to receiving your application.

Mark Lee (Deflecto Design Team Liaison)

Marilyn Gossett (Deflecto Design Team Coordinator)

In partnership with DreamSolutions Marketing Corp.

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Will I Be Required to Use Cartridges with the Cricut Explore Air 2?

For users of previous generations of Cricut machines (such as the Expression) that are considering making the jump to the newer generation of computer-connected Cricut Explore Air 2 machines, there can be a lot of confusion about whether they still need or can use the library of cartridges they’ve already invested in.

[This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Cricut.]

Hopefully, this FAQ will help clear that up for some people considering making the leap!

If you’ve already using one of the new generation of Cricut machines, skip to the end to see my latest Cricut project!

Cricut Cartridge

Q: Will I be required to use cartridges with the Cricut?

The Cricut Explore Air 2 (and the other machines in the Cricut Explore family) work by connecting to a computer or mobile device that is running the Cricut Design Space software. Content and cutting instructions come to the machine from the computer and Cricut Design Space, instead of from within the machine itself as with previous generations of machines.

Cricut Design Space functions as both the store to purchase content for your machine and the software to design and cut with. Instead of buying cartridges, you can buy individual images or fonts, or purchase a Cricut Access subscription that allows usage of a huge library of Cricut designs.

Q: But can I use my cartridges I already bought with a Cricut Explore Air 2 machine?

This is one of the most common concerns of users of older Cricut machines – such as the Expression – that are thinking of upgrading to one of the Cricut Explore family of machines. Over time, you can build up quite a library of cartridges and don’t want to have to pay for that content again! This is understandable, especially since I’ve met Cricut Expression machine owners who own hundreds of cartridges!

The good news is that you absolutely can use your library of cartridges with your Cricut Explore Air 2 (or other Cricut Explore family machines) by using the slot on the machine to “link” them to Cricut Design Space.

Q: How do I use my cartridges with Cricut Design Space?

To use your cartridges with Cricut Design Space and your Cricut Explore Air 2 machine, there is a simple process to follow to link the cartridge to Cricut Design Space.

To begin, log in to Cricut Design Space, and turn on your Cricut Explore Air 2 machine. Insert a cartridge that you want to link in the slot on your machine.

Cricut Explore Air 2 cartridge linking

Then, from the menu in the upper left of Cricut Design Space, select the “Link Cartridge” option:

Cricut Design Space Link Cartridge menu

Clicking the “Link Cartridges” option will pull up a screen that will walk you through linking your cartridge.

Cricut Design Space Link Cartridges

After you are done following the prompts on the screen, your cartridge will appear as “purchased” in your Cricut Design Space account and you will not be charged for using content from it in your projects. There is even a filter option in the cartridges view section of the image library that will let you view only your “purchased” cartridges! (Fonts from cartridges will appear on your list of fonts.)

Cricut Design Space purchased library

Q: Do I have to put my cartridge in my machine each time I want to use it?

Once you go through the “link cartridge” process with a Cricut cartridge, your ownership of that cartridge is recorded in your Cricut account. You will be able to use the contents of that cartridge directly from your computer anytime you log in to Cricut Design Space, without needing to put the cartridge in your machine. You can put your actual cartridges in a box on a high shelf in a closet, or under a bed, and forget they exist while you create with their contents in Cricut Design Space!

Q: Does linking my cartridge erase it? Can I still use it with other machines?

Linking your cartridge only records certain data about it to your Cricut Design Space account. It absolutely does not erase the cartridge’s contents. You can still continue to use the cartridge with older machines that don’t work with Cricut Design Space, such as the Expression.

Cartridges can only be linked to one Cricut Design Space account, so once a cartridge has been linked it cannot be linked again to another account. Since machines can connect to multiple devices and Cricut Design Space accounts, you do still have plenty of options if you want to use your cartridge on another Cricut Explore Air 2 machine while away from your own machine (such as at a crop). You can either use a mobile device to connect to your friend’s machine while logged into your Cricut Design Space account, or log in to your Cricut Design Space account on whatever device your friend uses with their machine usually.

Q: What if my cartridge was already linked to Cricut Craft Room?

If you have cartridges already linked to a previous Cricut Craft Room account, you need to make sure that you create your new Cricut Design Space account with the same user name and password as your Cricut Craft Room account. If you do this, your cartridges that were linked to Craft Room should show up automatically in your Cricut Design Space account!

Q: Why should I use my cartridges in Cricut Design Space?

Using cartridges in Cricut Design Space is so much easier that using cartridges on machines such as the Expression. Contents can be keyword searched, so there’s no more forgetting what cartridge that perfect image for your project is on (or that you have it altogether). There’s no more hunting on a keypad for multiple pieces of a layered image and trying to get them to cut the right size. Images can be layered, colored, and sized in Cricut Design Space so that you can see exactly what a finished item will look like. Designs can be saved to be cut exactly the same over and over. In short, using cartridge designs digitally via Cricut Design Space provides more design power and more visualization of the finished product. It also provides for more precise cutting, so there’s less wasted paper from cutting mistakes!

I will admit that I rarely used my Cricut machine before getting a Cricut Explore family machine and linking my cartridges to Cricut Design Space. It was just too much hassle to use cartridges, I could never remember what I had, and I found it too difficult to get my cuts sized how I wanted. Plus, I rarely found cartridges that I wanted enough of the images on to invest in them. Now, since linking my small collection of cartridges to Design Space, I use those images quite regularly!

I made this small wall art project using a silhouette from my “A Child’s Year” cartridge, which I believe was the first cartridge that I bought many years ago.

Silhouette Child Frame

Supplies Needed:

Normally you’d see silhouettes like this done in black but that feels a bit harsh to me visually. I chose to do mine in bronze metallic foil for a softer warmer look. In the metallic bronze foil, the silhouette is still very dark but also has a glow to it that exudes the warmth of a little girl.

A design like this relies on each of these elements being very precisely sized to work. Using my cartridge in Cricut Design Space makes this infinitely easier, as I was able to lay these elements all out and size them exactly in relation to each other and the size of the frame before cutting. I’d have never even attempted a design like this on my old Cricut machine.

Cricut Design Space

So, if you haven’t already…I highly recommend that you get those cartridges out of their boxes and into Cricut Design Space! It really does expand the possibilities of what you can do with them!

Will I be required to use cartridges with the Cricut?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

Update | Stampin’ Up, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Jobs & More!

Color. June means a new Stampin’ Up! annual catalog, and with it a new edition of the trend-based “In Colors” that are added each year to the Stampin’ Up color palette for a two year limited edition. Of note this year is that the palette is completely pink and green in shade: Fresh Fig, Berry Burst, Powder Pink, Tranquil Tide, and Lemon Lime Twist.

2017-2019 Stampin Up In Colors

Endings. Craft Ideas magazine is ceasing print after over 40 years in production. The Summer 2017 issue will be the magazine’s final one. Editor Molly Goad told readers in a letter published on the magazine’s blog that the company is looking for strategic partners to continue the magazine, but has no certain relationships at this time. Best wishes for the future to their talented staff . some of whom I’ve previously worked with – from the Scrapbook Update family.

Redesigned. Tonic Studios has issued an update to its customers indicating that it plans to ship a redesigned version of the Tim Holtz stamp platform beginning the week of July 9th.

As we move to catch up with the demand for the product we will be releasing the incoming shipments on a first come first served basis based with our retail partners on when we received the orders. We will be confirming the expected delivery date to each of our retailers within the next 7 days. The first shipments we expect to be dispatched on the week of 09 July with the second delivery to be on the week of 16 July. We are working to improve this wherever possible; however, we want to provide a clear and realistic route to completion. We also want to be realistic that the product will be entering the country during the holiday period which may involve additional small delays. These dates are when we will receive product into our warehouse in California so there may be a few more days to get the product to the partners and then onto the consumers.

Shows. Hotel reservations are open for Creativation 2018, which takes place in Phoenix from January 18th-22nd, and badge registration begins on Tuesday, June 13th.

Crime. According to a report in the Santa Clarita Valley area publication The Signal, the assistant manager of the Hobby Lobby store in Saugus, California has been arrested on child pornography charges. Donald Anthony Little has been charged with two felony counts related to alleged sharing of child pornography images online, and with being in possession of more than 600 child pornography images on his laptop computer. Little is free on bail pending his arraignment on June 22nd.

Neighbors. The White Sands Mall in Alamogordo, New Mexico, is losing its major tenant with the impending closure of the Kmart that has been there since 1976. However, the owner of the property told the Alamogordo Daily News that his company isn’t worried about filling the space, and has over a dozen prospective tenants lined up to tour the space. What’s the draw, in an era of dying malls? The mall will be breaking ground this month on a new Hobby Lobby next to the soon-to-vacant Kmart. “A lot of merchants, it appears, love to be next to Hobby Lobby,” Griffith told the paper.

Earnings. Michaels Companies held its earnings call for the first fiscal quarter of 2017 on Tuesday morning (June 6th) before NASDAQ market open. Net sales were flat for the quarter, with comparable same store sales down 1.2%, due the company said to a decrease in average purchase ticket. Gross profits, though, were up .6%, due to an accounting adjustment from the Lamrite West acquisition and increased margins (from the expansion of the company’s store branded merchandise lines). Michaels held its fiscal year 2017 expectations the same overall at net sales growth of 2.2% to 3.7%, and says that it expects that in the 2nd quarter same store sales will be down .5% to 1.5% (or flat to down 1% on a constant currency basis). The company plans to open four new stores in the quarter, relocate two others, and close four Aaron Brothers stores.

Michaels stock (NASDAQ: MIK) did not react well to the news from the Tuesday earnings call. It had been trending upward on Monday the day before the earnings call, closing up $.28 on the day at $19.83. Opening at $18.91 on Tuesday due to losses in after hours trading, after the morning earnings call the stock dropped hard and closed at $18.16. This was followed by an additional drop to $17.51 by close on Wednesday, a total loss of over 10% in value over Tuesday and Wednesday. Today, the stock started trending back upwards, closing up $.81 at $18.20.

New. American Crafts is launching a new decorative food collection with Sweet Sugarbelle in Michaels Stores. The line will include stamps and cutters and dough die, along with edible coloring book pages and paint palettes, to create decorative cookies.

Peek. If you are fan of artist Katie Pertiet, you might appreciate this profile with a peek into her studio and thoughts on design in a profile done for the blog of art licensing company Wild Apple.

Jobs. The following industry jobs are currently posted as available:

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Cards | Send a Clue to Someone You Adore with Master Detective

Sometimes, a product lands on my desk that just inspires me to create something, even if it doesn’t fit with my current editorial goals or calendar. When I opened the box from Graphic 45 containing their collection “Master Detective”, I immediately latched onto several pieces that I saw and knew they’d make a really cute card that I just had to drop everything and make. Here’s the results!

[Disclaimer: Some links are affiliate links that pay this site a commission when a purchase is made after a click. Some supplies used in this project were supplied to me by Buttons Galore & Graphic 45. My company manages the social media for Buttons Galore but this is not a sponsored post – I just happen to really like the products that my friend May Flaum designs, so I use them a lot!]

Supplies:

The concept that I built this card around is the piece of chipboard that says “Get a Clue” and then a pocket with an insert that says “Clues”. On the pocket, I stamped “i adore you” and “#HasMyHeart” using two different stamp sets, to create a clue to the sentiment I wanted to convey! It’s so hard to find masculine ways to say “I love you” in a card. This is not only somewhat masculine but also has a sense of fun, too!

The pocket was easy to assemble and the card fits snugly so I’m not worried about it falling out. It’s attached to the card with red liner tape, so it will stay secure while it is handled for the card to be pulled in and out.

Another thing I did on this card is one of my favorite design tricks – using strips cut from a paper’s design as design elements. The orange “I’m dying to see you” strip and the strip of faux stamps are cut from a sheet of the decorative paper in the Master Detective collection, turning them into elements something like sticker borders.

The area of buttons at the bottom of the card serves several purposes. It fills some large empty space, and it also adds some curves to soften all of the hard straight lines that are on the card’s design.

Clue Card-1982-4

Graphic 45 “Master Detective” is a really fun quirky collection that is quite versatile. It will work for literary and film buffs, fun cards, themed parties, and with the spooky elements and the color scheme, be a great alternative for Halloween as well. I expect to get a lot of use out of this little collection!

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