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Tag Archives | Spellbinders

Spellbinders Lawsuit Against QuicKutz Dismissed

Spellbinders’ lawsuit against QuicKutz for patent infringement has been thrown out of court by the judge in the case after a nearly three year court fight.

The company filed suit against QuicKutz in Dec. 2009 for alleged infringement on a patent it had been granted (referred to in court filings as the “634 patent”) by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for creating dies with an aperture. QuicKutz responded to the suit with multiple defenses, including by challenging with the PTO the validity of the patent that the suit was based on.

In July 2010, QuicKutz sold all of its assets to an investment group that formed a new company called Lifestyle Crafts around the company’s product lines. The original QuicKutz, renamed legally as QK2015 because the QuicKutz trademark had been sold to Lifestyle Crafts but referred to as QuicKutz in court filings, continued to exist as an entity to fight the lawsuit against it. Spellbinders also filed suit in January 2012 against the new Lifestyle Crafts entity alleging infringement of the 634 patent by that company as well.

The case began to turn against Spellbinders in late 2010 when the grounds the 634 patent were originally granted on were rejected by the PTO upon completion of the ex-parte re-examination of the patent that had been requested by the QuicKutz. This effectively invalidated the patent, and launched a lengthy round of appeals and counter-arguments to the PTO by Spellbinders and QuicKutz over the validity of the grounds for the patent that lasted until yesterday.  Continue Reading →

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Trends | Return of the Hexagons

Long ago at a CHA far, far away…

Okay, so maybe it wasn’t that long ago or even quite that far away, but there was no denying that at CHA Winter 2012, the hexagons were back! I’m not quite ready to call this trend a staple yet – it’ll take at least one more show to tell – but scrapbooking manufacturers of all styles have certainly embraced this shape and put their own spin on it. If you want to see examples from last summer’s show be sure to check out my Trend Watch article on Hexagons, Honeycombs, and Lattices from last October, but right now I want to take a look at some photos from the CHA Winter 2012 show floor and look at just what this trend had to offer this time around.

I have to admit that the Jenni Bowlin booth was one of the last places I would have expected to see hexagons at CHA Winter 2012, but she totally surprised me by putting her own signature (and lovely!) vintage spin on the shape. The hexagon paper (from the Magpie collection) and Quilted Stickers shown below are perfect examples of how a company can be trendy and still stay true to their roots.

Continue Reading →

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The CHA Winter 2012 Sneak Peeks Page Is Heating Up!

Have you checked out the Scrapbook Update CHA Winter 2012 Sneak Peeks page lately? The Scrapbook Update staff has been hard at work scouring the internet to bring you the latest in new product releases and sneak peeks during this busy season, and I’ve been busily entering them into a single table to make it easy for our readers to stay updated on the latest and greatest from all your favorite manufacturers. The page just passed 100 links in the table and is growing quickly!!

If you’re not familiar with the Sneak Peeks page, you can find it here, and we’ve worked hard to make it as easy as possible for you to find the information you need quickly. Want to see what’s been posted since your last visit? Click on the “Updated” column header to sort peeks by the date they were entered. Want to see the new releases from your favorite manufacturer? Just sort by “Company.” And if you’re headed to the CHA show in Anaheim (in less than two weeks!), we also have a “Booth” column to help you plan your trip.

Be sure to visit the page often as updates are made several times per day. Believe it or not, all the current updates were made during the calmer part of release season. This week and next are going to be hopping as we start to see more input from manufacturers that have been keeping things under wraps. American Crafts (including Crate Paper and Studio Calico), Bella Blvd., and Basic Grey are just a few of the companies that are keeping their new releases quiet until the show date is a little closer.

If you haven’t visited the Sneak Peeks page lately (or at all), here’s a look at some of the new releases you’re missing out on: Continue Reading →

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Letterpress | Spellbinders Grand Impressabilities

While you’ve all been patiently waiting for the final installment of my series on home letterpress systems, I’ve been rather impatiently waiting for today’s featured product to become available! I had Spellbinders’ new Grand Impressabilities impression plates in my hands almost as soon as they were available from the manufacturer, and I immediately set to work with the same inks and watercolor paper that I’ve used for the other articles in this series to see exactly what these tools could do.

Spellbinders’ Grand Impressabilities plates are larger versions of the existing Impressabilities line. Each Grand Impressabilities plate measures 8″ x 11″, meaning that crafters can emboss and letterpress on nearly a full 8.5″ x 11″ sheet of paper!

Unlike other tools that have been reviewed so far (such as Papertrey Ink’s Impression Plates) that have letterpress as an unadvertised “hidden talent” that sometimes carries some quirks, Grand Impressabilities were designed from the beginning with letterpress in mind – it’s even advertised right on the product packaging! Continue Reading →

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CHA Summer 2011| Spellbinders and Donna Salazar

The crew of Scrapbook Update had a fabulous fabulously busy day at CHA Summer 2011! The day started off with a pre-show press event with Spellbinders where I got up close and personal with their new Edgeabilities dies.

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The Edgeabilities debut includes six sets (MSRP is $19.99 per set) of three dies each, and the 8″ dies can be combined to create more than 70 different edging options.

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Here the staff at Spellbinders demonstrates the dies in their Grand Caliber machine which sports an 8″ track that is able to accommodate the full width of the die.

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Spellbinders is releasing a host of other new products at the show, including Grand Template box dies (yes, they really cut boxes!) and the 8″ x 11″ Grand Impressabilities- larger versions of their Impressabilities embossing template line.

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Spellbinders also showed how their dies could be used to cut sugar sheets to create edible decorations for cakes, cookies, and other confections – putting them in competition with Cricut’s Cake machine.

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After the demo I was able to get a personal demonstration from a Spellbinders staffer of how their Impressabilities can be used for creating letterpress. (Note: look for more on letterpress from Scrapbook Update in the coming weeks and months as we prepare to dive into this hot topic!)

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The Spellbinders booth was filled with gorgeous sample work, such as this layout featuring a stunning set of rosettes.

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Can you believe that those rosettes were made using this edge die?

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This lovely shaped card was made from a Grand Nestability cut that was folded in half.

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Donna Salazar has several new designs debuting in this collection, as well, and there were tons of samples of her work sprinkled throughout the booth.

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Luckily I was able to catch up with the lovely Donna, and she was kind enough to take me on a tour of her new products.

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Several of the girls in the Spellbinders booth were sporting hair accessories cut with the new Grand Peony Creations (unfortunately I didn’t get a photo of one of them).

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Donna’s new butterfly collection now comes with solid and detailed dies for a great layered look.

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Her alphabet die set coordinates perfectly with her chipboard alphabet from GCD Studios, giving crafters the ability to easily cut patterned paper to cover their plain letters. It also works well with Donna’s cardboard (produced by Zutter) to make her signature cardboard alphabets.

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These detailed Shadow Flowers dies are so versatile and could be used in so many ways on scrapbook pages, cards, or any type of paper craft.

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Perhaps the most exciting of the new releases is the addition to Donna’s original Creative Book Pages set – Creative Book Pages Two. This set can be used to create more varied and detailed pages and also includes a border die, book template die, and foldover tab tie.

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I also got a peek at Donna’s new Mixed Media Ink from Clearsnap.

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These pigment inks feature very rich colors and the long working times associated with this type of ink – perfect for mixed media and blending!

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And that was just the start of Scrapbook Update’s second day at CHA!! We’ve just barely scratched the surface of our coverage for both days, so stay tuned in the coming days/weeks for more reporting from the show floor and on the hot trends we spotted while we were out and about!

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

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Stay Issued in Spellbinders-QuicKutz Lawsuit

The judge assigned to the lawsuit that Spellbinders has filed against the entity that used to be QuicKutz has issued a stay in the case, pending the outcome of the ‘634 patent reexam that is currently underway at the U.S PTO. Since the ‘634 patent is the patent that Spellbinders is suing Quickutz for allegedly violating, invalidating the patent in the reexam would remove the grounds for the lawsuit.

The stay ceases activity in the case until the patent reexam is completed. The attorneys for the two sides had been engaged in the pre-trial discovery process, which was scheduled to last into summer 2011.

On October 22nd, the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office ruled in a non-final reexam against Spellbinders‘ basis for holding the patent on all 47 of the company’s original claims. The company has two months from the date of that ruling to file a response to the arguments against their 47 claims, or presenting new claims supporting the patent.

The judge’s stated basis for issuing the stay was, in part, that he presumes (based on the total rejection of the claims supporting the patent’s granting in the non-final ruling) that at least some of the claims supporting the ownership of the patent will be rejected, which he says will simplify the case.

The QuicKutz trademark is now owned by Lifestyle Crafts, who is not party to the suit filed by Spellbinders. The entity that is the target of the lawsuit is now called QK 2015, since the QuicKutz trademark was sold to Lifestyle Crafts.

QK 2015 president Eric Ruff issued this statement to Scrapbook Update about this latest ruling in the case:

I’m pleased with the judge’s decision to stay this litigation.  This helps stop the needless bleeding and harm that this lawsuit caused QuicKutz.  And I’m glad that, in rejecting all the Spellbinders claims, the Patent Office has validated our position.  I only wish we could have reached this point a long time ago.

A representative for Spellbinders told Scrapbook Update that the company has no comment on the latest development in the case.

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