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Tag Archives | Heidi Swapp

Update | Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Celebrities, Layoffs, Jobs & More

Crime. One of the culprits behind the 2011 payment card data breach at some Michaels Stores pled guilty recently to two charges related to the crime, which involved installing 88 counterfeit PIN pads at 80 Michaels Stores locations in 19 states. As many as 94,000 cards were believed to be compromised in the breach.

According to a press announcement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, Angel Angulo pled guilty in Federal Court in Camden, NJ on June 20th to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and aggravated identity theft. The conspiracy to commit bank fraud charge carries a potential sentence of 30 years in prison (plus a $1 million fine). In addition, the identity theft charge carries a mandatory 2 year sentence, which must be served consecutively to the bank fraud charge sentence. Sentencing in the case is scheduled for September.

Another conspirator in the fraud, Crystal Banuelos, pled guilty in 2015 to similar charges, and is still awaiting sentencing. She also consented in her plea to a forfeiture of $480,300 which is believed by prosecutors to be proceeds of the crime.

Crime II. Ivette Rodriguez, an attendee at Stampfest in Orlando over this past weekend, is being hailed as a hero by exhibitor Marco’s Paper and Crafts after she caught two people attempting to shoplift in their booth. Later in the day, in perhaps proof that the arc of the universe bends towards justice after all, Rodriguez won one of the event’s door prizes – a gift certificate to Marco’s Paper and Crafts.

Celebrities. Does your favorite Etsy seller have a secret – famous – identity? According to several news stories this week, Etsy apparently has some celebrity crafters lurking among its store owners. Singer Adele told a Wembley Stadium crowd recently that she has a secret hobby of making pom poms and selling them on Etsy. Also, Tila Tequila recently opened her own Etsy shop to sell her paintings through. (And of course, it’s not new…but who could forget Snooki’s Etsy shop?)

Celebrities II. Julianne Hough, of Dancing with the Stars fame, had her wedding shower last week for her wedding this Saturday to hockey player Brooks Laich. The event was thrown in Hough’s native Utah by her sister Sharee, who brought in Heidi Swapp to help plan and design the event. Hough’s blog contains an extensive recap of her wedding shower, including details on how Heidi incorporated her Design Boards and Instax products.

Books. Proving that trend is still going strong, designer Erin Bassett has a new book coming out September 5th called [Amazon affiliate link] The Art of Bible Journaling. The book is being published by Get Creative 6, an imprint of Sixth & Spring, which is a division of SoHo Publishing.

Layoffs. Etsy, for the second time this year, has announced that it is laying off staff. This second round of layoffs will include approximately 140 positions (or 15% of its workforce), making a total of 230 (or 22%) of its workforce laid off in 2017 based on end of 2016 employee numbers. The current round of layoffs will primarily be of marketing and product management staff as well as general & administrative positions. Most affected employees will come from the ranks of the company’s Brooklyn headquarters.

Etsy has not fared well with investors since its IPO in April 2015. Debuting at $16/share, the company briefly traded over $30/share before beginning to drop in value. Trading below $7 at one point in early 2016, the stock has been making a volatile climb back up. But as of today, it is still trading at $14.63, well below its IPO value 27 months ago.

Travel. If you are traveling to Creativation in Phoenix in January 2018, and your driver’s license is from Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, or Washington, you will need an alternate form of ID in order to travel home by air (starting on Jan. 22nd, 2018). Starting on that date, state ID from those states will no longer be valid for use for Federal purposes such as entering TSA checkpoints in airports, due to those states’ failure to implement the Federal REAL ID law that was passed on recommendation of the 9/11 Commission. Residents of those states will need to supply alternate ID, such as military ID, a green card/permanent resident card, or a passport, to be able to pass through airport security when traveling. It is recommended that if you need to apply for or renew a passport in the coming months, that you do so early, as the State Department expects a higher than normal level of applications due to REAL ID implementation in 2018.

Fees. Photobucket, in a stealth update to its terms of service, implemented major changes that now limit the ability to link to images hosted on the site from 3rd parties. This ability – which was previously available to all accounts, including free ones – is now limited to the service’s “Plus 500” level of account, which costs $399/year (or $39.99/month).

Linking to graphics hosted on free Photobucket accounts has long been a popular way on the internet of displaying message board images, and of hosting blog graphics to circumvent bandwidth and storage limits on blog hosting accounts. This change by Photobucket has resulted in a millions of images all over the internet now displaying instead as a Photobucket error graphic – being referred to as a ransom graphic by some. In many cases, the refusal of PhotoBucket to serve hosted images that have been linked has totally destroyed the usability of the associated content on blogs and message boards. In the crafts industry, this is especially true of one of the most affected sites – Etsy – where listings without photos are virtually useless.

Changes like this are why I always recommend to bloggers that their graphics be hosted on their own blog host. Linking to graphics on 3rd party sites carries the risk that those links could be cut off at any time. Especially risky is linking to images on accounts controlled by other people, such as design team members, who may choose to delete those accounts or images at any time for any reason.

Events. Ali Edwards has announced a second Story Camp in Eugene, Oregon fot October of this year. Registration opened  on June 27th, but bad news if you are interested in going – all 35 slots are already sold out!

Settlements. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York announced yesterday that it has filed a civil complaint against Hobby Lobby, alleging the company smuggled Iraqi antiquities into the U.S. in 2010. According to the government, Hobby Lobby spent $1.6 million in Dec. 2010 to purchase 5,500 antiquities from a dealer in UAE. The company proceeded with the purchase, allegedly, despite having been warned by a consultant they had retained about several red flags in the transaction that indicated the antiquities may be looted Iraqi objects. The antiquities were then shipped to the U.S. without proper customs paperwork, and labeled as “ceramic tiles” or “clay tiles (sample)” that originated in Turkey. Some of the shipments were seized by U.S. Customs, and further shipments originating in Israel were seized the following year.

cuneiform tablet forfeited by Hobby Lobby

International law enforcement agencies are highly interested in stopping illegal trade in antiquities from Iraq and other locations in the Middle East because selling looted antiquities is widely believed to be one source of funding for the ISIS terrorist network.

In a stipulation of settlement that was filed with the complaint, Hobby Lobby agreed to forfeit thousands of artifacts it had illegally imported, and pay a $3 million fine to settle the case. In addition, the company agreed to implement changes in the way it will acquire future antiquity purchases and to submit quarterly reports to the government of their purchases for the next 18 months to ensure that such transactions are legal. “We should have exercised more oversight and carefully questioned how the acquisitions were handled,” said Hobby Lobby President, Steve Green. “Hobby Lobby has cooperated with the government throughout its investigation, and with the announcement of today’s settlement agreement, is pleased the matter has been resolved.”

Jobs:

 

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2017 Creativation Trends for Scrapbooking

One of the greatest thing about attending a trade show is that seeing so many product introductions all in one place at one time really brings into focus the trends that are taking place in the industry at that moment. Here’s a look at some of the top 2017 Creativation trends for scrapbooking.

[Disclaimer: Some links below are advertiser links or affiliate links that pay this site a commission at no cost to the reader when a purchase is made after a click.]

Puffy Stickers

Perhaps this is part of the growing trend of 1980’s nostalgia, but whatever the reason, puffy stickers were making their presence felt as a trend on the Creativation show floor. American Crafts used this sticker style across several of their brands, including Maggie Holmes, Crate Paper and Pink Paislee. But it was also seen in the Jillibean Soup and Echo Park booths, among others.

Below: Maggie Holmes “Chasing Dreams” Puffy Stickers

Creativation Trends - Maggie Holmes puffy stickers

Stamp Presses

Since the introduction of the MISTI created what is arguably an entirely new tool category for the industry, other companies have rushed to introduce their own versions of a stamp press. We R Memory Keepers released theirs last year, and at Creativation, Hampton Art and Tonic Studio (under its Tim Holtz signature line) added their versions to the mix. This trend is definitely being fed by the increasing interest in stamping in the papercrafts market, especially layered stamping. The growing DIY party market (with the mass production of items like invitations and table decorations) is also a factor in their popularity.

Below: Hampton Art Stamp Perfect stamp press

Creativation Trends -Hampton Art Stamp Perfect 10x10

 

Geo Shapes

These geometric shapes that appear to be faceted or geodesic started appearing a lot in stamps and dies last year, and the trend continued at the Creativation show with products like this die from Spellbinders’ collection by designer Lene Lok. This trend is one of those “universal” style trends that can be adapted for any season or theme, so its life isn’t artificially limited by changing seasons (like the flamingoes below).

Below: Spellbinders Lene Lok collection.

Creativation Trends -Spellbinders Lene Lok

Planner Madness

Trend doesn’t cover the level that planners have reached in the papercrafts industry. They are rapidly reaching full-on market domination, Creativation brought an avalanche of products for planners. Companies that had previously experimented with the market dived head long in and companies that had yet to enter the market dipped their toes in. Ranger, which markets itself mostly as a mixed media company, added a planner to its Dylusions line by Dyan Reavely. The trend’s influence is visible even in lines not being explicitly sold as “planner” products, as “planner friendly” products like small stickers and washi tape are being seen more in papercrafts lines.

Below: Dylusions by Dyan Reavely Creative Dyary.

Creativation Trends -Dylusions planner

Flocks of Flamingoes

We started to see the flamingoes pop up in last summer’s beach and tropical themed lines, but this summer scrapbooking is being invaded by entire flocks of flamingoes. There’s stamps, dies, patterned papers, stickers – almost anything you can imagine has a flamingo on it! Echo Park, Crate Paper, and Spellbinders are just a handful of the industry names that are going to the (pink) birds for 2017.

Below: Lawn Fawn “Baby Flamingo” clear stamps

Creativation Trends -Lawn Fawn Flamingo stamps

Emojis

They’re not just for for internet hipsters anymore – emojis are cool for everyone. And with emojis making their way into the home decor and fashion markets, it was only a matter of time before we started seeing them in the crafts market. They’ve popped up in a few places in the past, but at Creativation they were much more noticeable. DCWV was prominently displaying a set of icons for its new letterboard, and Simple Stories introduced an entire emoji-inspired collection called “Emoji Love”.

Below: Simple Stories “Emoji Love” clear stickers

Creativation Trends -Simple Stories Emoji Love

Americana/Farmhouse

We usually see patriotic lines released late spring for the Memorial Day and July 4th holidays. But this year they reflect a new trend showing itself in home decor and fashion: Americana/Farmhouse. While Americana is red, white and blue like its patriotic themed counterparts, there are some key differences. Patriotic themed design is centered around red and white stripes and white stars on a navy background. But in Americana theme, the designs include those elements along with things like flowers, cows (or buffalos), bandana print, and other so-called “country” graphics.

Below: Pink Paislee “Sweet Freedom”

Creativation Trends -Pink Paislee Sweet Freedom Samples

Everything Old is New Again

Trends in the crafts industry tend to be cyclical, both in the sense of what craft is popular at a given time, and also in style trends. We’re seeing a real avalanche of trends and products this year that harken back to the industry’s early days. Hand lettering, foam stamps, rub-ons, cute animal characters, and the dominance of pens were among just a few of of the things on the Creativation show floor making me wonder if I’d time traveled to the early days of the 21st century again.

Below: Tim Holtz idea-ology Tag Press

Creativation Trends -Tim Holtz tag maker

Foam Stamps

One of the “old is new” products currently growing in market presence are foam stamps. Back in the early days of the scrapbooking boom, foam stamps were one of the commonly available supplies to scrapbookers since the stamps were already on the market for use in painting and home decor. Making Memories in its hey day of being a trendsetter even made some specifically for the scrapbooking market, including popular alphabets. They were loved for their affordability, but fell in popularity when the market began to be infatuated with affordable clear stamps.

With the rise of mixed media and increasing use of paint in papercrafting, foam stamps – designed for use with paints – have been creeping back into the market again. Prima launched some a few years ago. Last year, mixed media artist Julie Fei-Fan Balzer launched a line of foam stamps with Canadian company Art Foamies, and Heidi Swapp launched foam stamps in her line as well. Creativation saw more releases, including from Tim Holtz’s idea-ology line.

Below: Tim Holtz idea-ology Cling Foam Stamps

Creativation Trends -Tim Holtz idea-ology Foam Stamps

Hand Drawn Lettering

Another blast from the past that is rapidly gaining in popularity is the art of hand drawn lettering. This look was so popular in the early days of the industry that its popularity gave us the designer who is one of the biggest names in today’s industry, Becky Higgins. Partially driven today by the popularity of Bible journaling, this resurgent trend is spawning books, pens, stencils and even stamps to fake the look of hand done art.

Below: Tammy Tutterow collection by Spellbinders

Creativation Trends -Spellbinders Tammy Tutterow booth samples

Letter Boards

Retro looks and signage have been very popular lately, so perhaps it was only a matter of time before the letter board came back. These old style boards that could have letters or words anchored in their crevices were popular before that age of computer signage. Now they are back courtesy of craft industry brands like Heidi Swapp and DCWV.

.Below: Heidi Swapp Letterboard

Creativation Trends - Heidi Swapp Letterboard

Butterflies

It’s not uncommon to see a sprinkling of butterflies this time of year, but this year we are seeing hordes of colorful ones. Butterflies are being used in overall designs on patterned paper from One Canoe Two and Maggie Holmes, along with on many embellishments. This versatile trend covers themes from spring to little girl to nature.

Below: One Canoe Two “Hazelwood – Flock” patterned paper.

Creativation Trends - One Canoe Two Hazelwood Butterfly paper

Mixed Media

The past few years have seen the scrapbooking industry dominated by a trend toward “mixed media”. In case there was any question about whether mixed media was still going strong, two of the three new signature lines introduced by American Crafts at Creativation were mixed media lines: Jane Davenport and Vicki Boutin. Other companies such as Prima and Faber-Castell continued to expand their mixed media offerings, proving that they are still all in on this craft concept that combines various areas of the industry.

Below: Jane Davenport collection by American Crafts

Creativation Trends - Jane Davenport collection

Bible Journaling

It’s hard to believe that the launch of Bella Blvd’s “Illustrated Faith” brand with Shanna Noel was barely less than two years ago. Since then, Bible journaling has become a true force in the papercrafting industry, influencing the launch of mixed media products, stencils, stamp lines, and even a trend toward hand drawn lettering.

Below: Faber-Castell Bible Journaling Kit

Creativation Trends - Faber Castell Bible Journaling

What Creativation trends are your favorites? What trends did you see at the show?

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SNAP Conference 2016: My First Blogging Conference

Somehow, with all of the travel that I have done for my work running my websites in the past few years, the one thing that I hadn’t done was attend one of the major national blog conferences. I had attended local events like WordCamp here in Florida, but hadn’t traveled further afield for one.

I finally crossed “attend blog conference” off of my list last week when I attended the 2016 SNAP Conference  for creative bloggers in Salt Lake City. For those unfamiliar with it, SNAP Conference is a three day annual event based in Salt Lake City that serves home, craft, and DIY bloggers. The event provides networking, education, and opportunities to connect with sponsors.

Delta Flight Information

My journey to SNAP started with a 4am drive to Daytona Beach International airport to catch a 6am flight to Atlanta. I love Daytona Beach airport – it’s only a half hour away from my house and easy to use because it is tiny. It’s so tiny, in fact, that when I checked in for my trip to SNAP, the check-in agent handed me my boarding pass and said, “Your flight is at gate 2.” I told him, “You could have just said go to the gate with the plane at it.” He laughed and told me I was right. Once, I arrived a bit too early for my flight and spent quite awhile as the lone passenger in the secure area of the terminal, with only the airport’s police officer and the gift store clerk for company. Continue Reading →

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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.)

Screen-Shot-2015-07-12-at-9.42.47-PM1

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 →

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Project | Travel Album : Wanderlust

[Disclaimer: The Close To My Heart ink pad used on this layout was received as an editorial sample. All other products used on this layout were purchased myself. Some links in this article may contain affiliate links, which help support Scrapbook Update by paying a commission on purchases made from them.]

Now that I am back off the road from all of my traveling, I am back to my travel scrapbooking! I’m still working on getting layouts done from my trip to Frankfurt in 2014. This is the first of two layouts that contain assorted photos from my walking tour of the area around Frankfurt’s historic Römer square.

Wanderlust layout Continue Reading →

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CHA Mega Show 2015 | Nancy’s Picks

The Scrapbook Update Hot Picks bring you the buzz from CHA shows, but sometimes my personal taste varies from what is “hot” or there isn’t room to include all of the things that I think are exciting.

So in honor of Valentine’s Day, let’s do “Nancy’s Picks”, my personal list of what I fell in love with at the CHA Mega Show 2015.

First up is one of my favorite Instagrams from the show! I’ve always loved the concept of Faber-Castell’s Gelatos, but the color palette of brights and primaries left me really cold. Now though, they’ve released a palette of pastel colors for the line that I believe will increase the product lines usability for me (and a lot of other people). Plus it makes for very pretty rainbow pictures!

Gelato Rainbow Continue Reading →

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