Great Finds Friday: CHA Summer 2013 Hot List Part II

Create-n-Connect, the summer trade show sponsored by the Craft and Hobby Association, tantalized crafters with a tempting array of nifty new artsy toys and inspiration.

Here’s the second installment in our two-part, exhaustive look at what’s new, hot, and enticing, from trends and tools to inks, stamps, and more. Grab a pen and paper because you’ll want to start your holiday wish list now!

At Ranger, Tim Holtz introduced 24 Distress Glitters, which sparkle like mica; 12 new Distress Markers; and Distress Watercolor Cardstock made specifically to handle wet inking techniques. Create your own rainbow stamping pad with spray mists using Dyan Reaveley’s Ink Spray Pad, an oversized, blank foam pad. Ranger’s latest inklings are Wendy Vecchi’s waterproof Archival Inks in vintage colors that coordinate with Distress Inks. Ranger describes the palette of colors as “inspired by a vintage country garden.” The inks are permanent, so you can stamp with them, and then use water-based inks (such as Distress) right over the designs.

Clearsnap brought SurfaceZ, a fast-drying, multi-surface, permanent ink; new ColorBox Archival dye colors; a cleaning pad; Spritzers quick-drying dye spray; Art Screens stencils; blending tools; Smooch foam Accent Tips for precision coloring; and more.

Faber-Castell’s Gelatos Kit is a great introduction to these creamy, blendable, water-soluble color sticks. The kit comes with 10 Gelatos, mister, instruction book, sample of surfaces, and more. Mixed-media journal cards have a watercolor texture and are sturdy enough to withstand wet mediums without warping.

Tombow’s new Fun Doodling Kit is a great gift for a budding artist, while the Blending Kit comes with blender, palette, spray mister, and guide showing how to get the most from Dual Brush Pens. Also, soft-lead, wax-based Irojiten Colored Pencils now come in sepia tones.

We are beguiled by Milk Paint lead-free powder by Imaginisce. Just add water and mix. Mix only what you need, or store leftover liquid for about a week in the ‘fridge.

DecoArt has chalkboard paint for porous and non-porous surfaces, plus new Clear Chalkboard Paint that turns any acrylic-painted surface into a chalkboard.

Want the chalkboard look without the paint? We saw lots of stickers, tags, and papers, including Authentique’s Irresistible papers and Prima’s La Tiza Chalkboard Paper Flowers (shown here, great with colored pencil, inks, metallic pastes, etc.).

Rustic and vintage paper and embellishments are abundant, including: Bo Bunny’s kraft bags, paper rolls, pleated burlap, etc.; Hemptique’s Bamboo baker’s twine (shown here), May Arts’ well-stocked ribbons (including new elastic ribbon); Maya Road’s colored burlap and fabric tape; new products from Canvas Corp, etc. Or go bright with Tulip One-Step Spray Dye Kit (spray bottles are pre-packaged with powder that you dissolve in water, shown here).

We’re intrigued by Bazzill Basics Paper Tarnished Tissue. It’s lightweight but strong enough to take inks, sprays, chalks, and even dry embossing and punching. We also love the company’s Pleated Papers and Antique Paper Tape.

We wouldn’t forget stamps. Tim Holtz has more holiday images in his popular blueprint series, and his new line of old-school apothecary designs are so very Tim. (Do check out his blog to see all the vintage goodness, including his fabulous show booth.)

Sweet and sassy more your thing? Find both at Art Impressions (chubby babies to sassy old ladies and gents, as well as scene-stealing trios that make delightful tri-fold cards), Some Odd Girl (cute to quirky with some nice teen/tween images), Something Tattered (romantic, French-inspired clear stamps destined for weddings and elegant stationery, shown here), and Whimsy Stamps (demure to risqué), to name just a few.

Impression Obsession added 300 images to its already extensive line, including beautifully detailed Gary Robertson scenes (shown here), lovely cowboy silhouettes and phrases, Cover-a-Card backgrounds, and some nice teen-centric silhouettes. House-Mouse Designs stamps are new at Stampendous! Art Impressions and Hero Arts have stamps that help support Operation Write Home, a non-profit that sends handcrafted cards so military personnel overseas can write home; a new Art Impressions set is shown here.

Paper, paper, paper! So good, so plentiful! Anna Griffin’s holiday line runs from retro ’40s colors to the elegant silver and gold Winter Wonderland Collection. Authentique has cute puzzle pieces in the holiday Joyous Collection. BoBunny’s Zip a Dee Doodle Collection, shown here, features hand-drawn designs. Carta Bella’s cowboy/cowgirl themes, from Echo Park Paper Co., will make you say giddy-up.

Kaisercraft’s Basecoat papers look like wood, brick, linen, etc. WorldWin can’t be beat for variety, from textures and shimmers to Cut Mates (specially designed for crisp die cutting) and Tube (slightly coated to handle inks, mists, etc., with no soak-through).

As for embellishments, mustaches, cameras, and chevrons are still popular design motifs. Doodlebug Designs Pixies, shown here, are colorful picks for cards, pages, cupcakes, etc., while Sprinkles are bright, round, glossy stickers. Piddix photo images are sized just right for bezels and already coated so you don’t have to worry about bleeding, while Bazzill Basics Paper alterable metal tags are great for jewelry.

Did you miss part I of this CHA Recap? Check out the August 16th Great Finds Friday blog post. Visit the companies mentioned in the Resources list for more information about new products.


American Crafts

Anna Griffin

Art Gone Wild

Art Impressions


Bazzill Basics Paper


Bottle Cutting Inc.

Canvas Corp.




Doodlebug Design


Echo Park/Carta Bella

Ecstasy Crafts

Elizabeth Craft Designs



Hot Off The Press


Impression Obsession


Lifestyle Crafts

Little B

May Arts

Maya Road

My Mind’s Eye

Penny Black



Queen & Co.




Some Odd Girl

Something Tattered



Stamper’s Anonymous

Taylored Expressions

The Crafter’s Workshop

Tim Holtz



We R Memory Keepers

Whimsy Stamps

World Win Papers


by Roberta Wax (

Another Look at Kit Clubs

Hello Crafts ‘n things friends! It’s Jill Cornell with you today, and I am continuing my blog series where I interview two kit club owners. It’s a great way to learn more about these scrapbooking and paper crafting clubs, plus you have the opportunity to win that month’s kit!

First, let’s meet Kimber McGray, who coordinates The Card Kitchen, to find out more about her fabulous card kit.

1) When did you start your kit club? And what made you decide to go into business?

September 2011. The kit club is owned by the owner of Jillibean Soup, Jill Yegerlehner. We saw a large need for a card kit club. With so many scrapbook kit clubs, we felt that it would be great to have another type of kit offering.

2) Do you offer subscriptions? What does a subscription entail?

Yes, we offer subscriptions for $22.99+$5.25 for priority shipping. The customer receives a kit mailed to their home. We have a 6-month commitment from the customer for the subscriber rate.

3) Do you offer a one-time purchase option?

Yes, we offer a one-time purchase option for $24.00+ $5.25 for priority shipping. The customer that wants to purchase a one-time kit can only purchase after all subscriptions have been accounted for. You have the chance of missing out on a kit if it sells out via subscriptions.

4) Do you ship internationally?

Yes, we do ship internationally at the current rate for shipping. No additional fees.

5) Do you offer add-ons?

Yes, we offer add-ons. A customer can order anything from the Jillibean Soup retail store and have it shipped with their kit for no additional shipping fee.

6) What does a typical kit look like (i.e. how many sheets of cardstock? patterned paper? alphabets? embellishments)? Describe it for us.

We do not include cardstock. We include 8 card bases and 8 envelopes, usually 8 sheets of 12″x12″ pattern paper. Many different stickers, die-cuts, buttons, ribbons, tags, embellishments to coordinate with the kit.

7) What sets you apart from the competition? Do you offer exclusives?

We do not usually do exclusives, but we have done a few exclusive die-cut items in past kits. We offer color photos plus instructions on how to create 8 cards with the kit and only the kit. We make sure that we don’t add items to our final projects so the customer can see what they can really make with the kit.

8) Do you appeal to a wide range of papercrafters? Who is your audience? (Scrapbookers, project lifers, card makers, altered and mixed media artists?)

We mainly appeal to card makers, but a scrapbooker or project lifer could easily use this kit for their projects.

9) Do you have a design team? How can subscribers and others find inspiration with your kit?

We have myself (Kimber McGray) and Amy Sheffer work with the kit each month plus one guest designer. We have a website and blog that we post to daily for inspiration. Here are a couple examples using the August kit from Amy Sheffer.

10) Link us up with your website, blog, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, etc.

Link to blog:


And now the giveaway! Leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win August’s The Card Kitchen Kit!

Finally, let’s meet Lori Gentile, owner of Gossamer Blue, and get to know more about her monthly scrapbooking and Life Pages kits. 

1) When did you start your kit club? And what made you decide to go into business?

I started Gossamer Blue in August 2012. It’s something I had wanted to do for many years. I love this industry and it has been a dream of mine to work for myself doing what I love most.

2) Do you offer subscriptions? What does a subscription entail?

We have two subscriptions. One is a scrapbooking kit subscription complete with 12″x12″ papers and embellishments and the other is a Life Pages kit subscription complete with 3″x4″ and 4″x6″ journaling cards and embellishments perfect for creating with divided page protectors. Each subscription includes exclusive Gossamer Blue products, including papers, journaling cards, and stamps, which I’m very excited about. The graphic designers are amazing and they really help make the kits special each month.

3) Do you offer a one-time purchase option?

I do offer a one-time purchase. This is dependent on if kits are left over for the month.

4) Do you ship internationally?

I do. I ship all over and it is very exciting to read international blogs and see Gossamer Blue kits in use in other countries.

5) Do you offer add-ons?

There are three core add-ons each month; a main kit add-on, an add-on #2, and a Bits & Pieces add-on. The first two are additional traditional scrapbooking supplies and include exclusive papers and products. The Bits & Pieces add-on always includes a 6″x6″ paper pad and a stamp set and is geared toward card makers and divided page protector scrapbookers. Starting in October, there will be add-ons for the Life Pages kit, as well.

6) What does a typical kit look like (i.e. how many sheets of cardstock? patterned paper? alphabets? embellishments)? Describe it for us.

The Main kit has 10 sheets of patterned paper, including 3 exclusive papers, 4 sheets of cardstock, an exclusive stamp set manufactured by Elle’s Studio, alphabets and full packs of embellishments. The Life Pages kit includes 24 exclusive 3″x4″ cards, 6 exclusive 4″x6″ cards, an exclusive stamp set manufactured by Elle’s Studio, embellishments and alphabets.

7) What sets you apart from the competition? Do you offer exclusives?

We have exclusive patterned papers, stamps and journaling cards. Both subscriptions include a set of cut files and a printable, both designed to coordinate perfectly.

8) Do you appeal to a wide range of papercrafters? Who is your audience? (Scrapbookers, project lifers, card makers, altered and mixed media artists?)

Yes. I believe the kits appeal to a broad range. There scrapbookers, project lifers, card makers, and art journalers as members.

9) Do you have a design team? How can subscribers and others find inspiration with your kit?

The design team is amazing! There are two teams; one for the Main kit and one for the Life Pages kit. There is a full gallery each month and each team member creates a blog post using the kits. We have challenges each month and even have a special album challenge for members where they can earn a free album! That’s a great incentive to use up kits!

Here is a project from design team member Jill Cornell using this month’s kit:

And here is one from design team member Emily Spahn:

10) Link us up with your website, blog, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, etc.

And now the giveaway! Leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win August’s Gossamer Blue kit!

Remember, leave a comment by Monday, September 2nd, at midnight to be entered for a chance to win either of these two beautiful kits! Winners will be announced on the blog on Tuesday, September 3rd.

Good Luck and Happy Crafting!

Jill Cornell from Blessed Scrapper (

Meet the Mice Stamp Winners!

It’s time to announce the winners of the House-Mouse Designs® Stamp Giveaway featured in the August 2nd Great Finds Friday post. If you missed the exciting news about House-Mouse Designs® and Stampendous!®, read more here. These new images, available in wood-mount and Cling Rubber™ stamps, are the newest licensed designs available from Stampendous!®.

House-Mouse Designs® is the creation of Vermont-based artist Ellen Jareckie. Her characters — Amanda, Monica, Mudpie, Maxwell, and Muzzy, along with their friends — all have distinct personalities and each of them will delight the recipients of your holiday and everyday greetings.

Here’s the stamp that Stampendous!® is giving away to two lucky blog readers, plus a cute holiday card created by Crafts ‘n things blog team member, and Stampendous! design team member, Suzanne Czosek. The stamp is called “Trick or Cheese” and features Mudpie.

The winners, as chosen by, are Karen and Joe. We asked readers to leave a comment telling us their favorite mouse. Karen is a Mudpie fan; Joe picked wee Monica.

Congratulations winners! I will contact you via email with more information about claiming your prizes.

Be sure to read the next Great Finds Friday post today for a recap of trends and cool products discovered by Crafts ‘n things Contributing Writer Roberta Wax at this summer’s CHA Create-n-Connect event held in Las Vegas. Part II of the recap will be featured in the Aug. 30th Great Finds Friday post.

Happy Crafting!

Dawn Gehring, Crafts ‘n things Editorial Staff