Tag Archives | Becky Higgins

Update | Pantone, Etsy, Pinterest, Jobs, Calls & More!

The summer shows are over, and it’s hard to believe it but the industry is already ramping up for Christmas and winter shows. Where did 2016 go?

Consolidating. Canvas Corp has announced that the 7 Gypsies and Tattered Angels brands have been consolidated under the single company of Canvas Corp. The three brands were previously separate companies. All of the brands will continue to be marketed, but can now be ordered together from one company.

HOME by Becky Higgins logo

Expanding. Project Life founder Becky Higgins has announced the launch of a new brand called “HOME by Becky Higgins“. The lifestyle brand is launching with an initial product offering of four designs of all-occasion premium wrapping paper. Although she’s known professionally for her work in the scrapbooking industry, Becky’s popular blog often features her home and her style is frequently the subject of admiring comments and questions from readers. Higgins’ move is not unprecedented – it takes place against a backdrop of a changing scrapbook market in recent years that has sent many of the major scrapbook segment companies (such as My Minds Eye, Teresa Collins, Heidi Swapp, and American Crafts) looking for new markets in markets like stationery, party goods, and lifestyle products.

Launching. Ali Edwards will be launching pre-orders for 2016 December Daily kits on September 1st. The designer reveal will begin next Monday, on August 22nd. (Hmm, maybe I should finally finish that 2013 album….)

Mobilizing. Pantone has launched a new iOS app called PANTONE Studio. The app takes mobile the ability to build and share color palettes using Pantone color tools, and apply colors to various designs and surfaces as a visualization tool. Users can also access Pantone trend information. A free limited version of the app is available, or the full version can be purchased for $7.99/month or $59.99 for an entire year.

Linking. Etsy is partnering with Intuit to offer a special Etsy version of Quickbooks Self-employed. Etsy storeowners will be able to download their Etsy sales, as well as transactions from other providers such as Square and Paypal, directly into the accounting software. The software will be available the first year for $5/month, or for $12/month with a TurboTax bundle.

Curating. Pinterest announced some feature changes to its site design today, including a new preferences setting that will allow users to stop the presence of “Picked for You” pins in their feeds. Pinterest, in their announcement, said this feature was added at the request of users. Personally I find the “Picked for You” pins to be a great way to find interesting content, but it seems that a vocal segment of Pinterest users disagree. If a large portion of Pinterest users take advantage of this new feature, it could impact site traffic and account growth for users whose pins are favored by the Picked for You engine.

Changing. Instagram’s new Stories feature has a lot of users wondering what to make of it. Abby Glassenberg of While She Naps has an interesting perspective on exactly how disruptive Stories is to the direction of Instagram.

Sharing. I’m pleased to announce that I will be serving another term on the design team at the Layout-A-Week blog run by Jennifer Priest. My first layout of the new term is a summer garden layout featuring Simple Stories and Quick Quotes products.

in the garden layout preview

Events, part 1. Registration is open for the Designer Day portion of Bella Blvd’s event in Milwaukee on October 20th. Workshops may be purchased ala carte from a schedule that includes Shanna Noel, Jill from Jillibean Soup, and Julie Johnson.

Events, part 2. Prima is launching a planner line, and they are having an event in Temecula, California to celebrate. Tickets are $120 per person for the October 15th event, and include a goodie bag with a planner, a workshop, lunch, demos, and more.

Events, part 3. Altitude Summit, the popular social media and blogger conference for creatives, has a call for speakers out for its 2017 event. The conference will take place in Palm Springs, California from January 31st to February 3rd, 2017, a week after Creativation (and overlapping with Creativeworld).

Returning. The Craft & Hobby Association is advertising a list of previous exhibitors that will be returning to the winter show (now named Creativation) after a break that includes Darice, Walnut Hollow, Coats and Clark, Springs Creative, TrimCraft, Modern Store Fixtures, Prym Consumer USA, and Crescent Cardboard.

Jobs. The following craft industry positions are currently advertised as available:

Calls. The following calls for designers are currently open:

Moving. My company Nally Studios has moved business locations and has a new address. Please contact me by email at if you need our updated address information.


Update | Photo Play Paper, Work, Webster’s Pages, and more!

It’s November and that means turkey, right? Actually for most in the industry, it means that Christmas and the winter trade shows are in full swing!

Sharing. For generous crafters looking to hand make cards and share them with others, deadlines are already approaching!

The American Red Cross’s Holiday Mail for Heroes program provides bundles of blank cards to ill and injured veterans at Fort Belvoir and Walter Reed. Deadline for providing card bundles is November 20th. See the Red Cross website for details on how to participate.

The Caring Hearts Card Drive that collects cards to deliver to nursing homes is also ongoing. The deadline for providing cards to the drive is November 27th. Visit Jennifer McGuire’s blog for information on providing cards for the project.

Work. Digital store Snap,Click,Supply is looking for product designers to sell in their marketplace. To apply, visit the website to fill out an application.

If messy mixed media is more your style, you might be interested in the 2016 Artist Gang call from Donna Downey Studios. Entries are due on December 7th, and the new team will be announced on Dec. 14th. Continue Reading →


Update | ICE Resin, Tammy Tutterow, SPC, more

Another wave of news has hit, and that means it is time for another Update column!

By now, most everyone in the industry has heard the sad news of the tragic death of Heidi Swapp’s 16 year old son Cory on July 10th. My family joins the entire scrapbook industry in sending its love and support to the Swapp family at this difficult time.

If you’d like to share your message of support with the Swapp family, two different options are available. Becky Higgins is coordinating a collection of 4×4 cards to be placed into albums for the family, and Persnickety Prints is accepting mail at their address for the Swapps as well. (The address is in the graphic below.)


New Products. While Heidi is taking some time off to deal with the loss of her son, the Heidi Swapp media team has taken over running the social media promotion for Heidi’s recently announced big product launch at Target. The DIY Marquee line is debuting in Target stores. The products appear similar to the Marquee letters previously released under Heidi’s brand, but are made of plastic instead of paper. Continue Reading →


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 →


Breaking: American Crafts Acquires We R Memory Keepers

American Crafts announced today that it has acquired We R Memory Keepers.

Family-owned We R Memory Keepers is based in Salt Lake City, Utah and is known in the industry for its albums, tools and Albums Made Easy pocket scrapbooking collections – all of which make it an attractive acquisition target for American Crafts. It has also been getting attention for products in the home decor and organization markets at recent shows. The company has a licensing deal with designer Teresa Collins to design Albums Made Easy products.

We R Memory Keepers AlbumsWe R Memory Keepers has been having huge success with their “punch board” tools that create everything from flowers to envelopes, but they are also known for the Crop-A-Dile tools and the Sew Easy system. In September 2013, We R acquired Lifestyle Crafts, adding the QuicKutz and L Letterpress lines of tools to their line up at a time when letterpress is growing in popularity. Continue Reading →


Update | 6.12.2014 – Google+, Megan Hoeppner, Webster’s Pages, more

Is the end near for Google+? Murmurs are getting louder in the tech community that Google+’s days are numbered after several ominous developments in the past few months.

First, in April, Google executive Vic Gundotra, the executive in charge of Google+, suddenly left the company citing family reasons. At the same time, it became apparent that many of the engineers responsible for building Google+ were being reassigned to other areas of the company. Then in late May, at a code conference in California, Google co-founder Sergey Brin told the audience that “It was probably a mistake for me to be working on anything tangentially related to social to begin with.”

Google+ has never reached the popularity of Facebook and Twitter, achieving only a fraction of the active users in a month of their two major competitors, although it has found niche popularity in certain communities (like the photography community). Google has a history of killing products with avid user bases that it doesn’t consider profitable or a success – most recently and notably Google Reader. It also has a history of letting products die a slow death by not developing or maintaining them – most notably at the moment Feedburner, which is also on a deathwatch in the community of online publishers that rely on it. Continue Reading →