This blog is dedicated to stamping, tips, musings, and whatever I want to post. I want my cards to make you smile. You may copy, post, pin, anything you want. To me this is a sharing hobby.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

My Annual Product/Vendor Review

So, due to being half retired, with half income, I have reduced my shopping to half. This is a good thing as I am now even more picky about what I buy and expect excellent product at good prices. I use coupon codes, wait for sales, or buy on FB or eBay as much as possible.

My favorite tool still has to be the MISTI. It changed the way I stamp. I have 2 of them because I got one of the defective ones when they first came out and was sent a second. The defective one still stamps well and it really comes in handy with multi-step stamping to have 2 set up.

I have switched over to Altenew inks. They are a bit pricey and they are lacking in the oranges and greens in my opinion, but they are a very good dye ink that dries fast and color stays true.

I am still using A Muse and Fresh Ink from Impress for my chalk and blending inks and still happy with those.

My paper choices have not changed. I used Walmart Georgia Pacific for card backs much of the time. I use Papertrey for heavier cards and for embossing folders. Gina K Pure Luxury is my go to for Copics and sometimes for stamping. It can bleed a little more so very defined stamps do better on the Papertrey.

Lawn Fawn--I almost always buy these on Amazon. I love their stamps but their dies are getting more and more expensive, causing me to buy only the sets that I really, really want.

Avery Elle-I find a set now and then, but not as much as before. Again, I usually buy these on Amazon.

Papertrey-no customer service issues at all this year. Products are hit and miss. I often love Betsy's limited Make it Market Kits and usually buy one or 2 per year. This year I bought Don't Forget to Write and Garden Gate. Last year I got the Tinsel and Tags and still love it. I see it is now going for around $600  on eBay. I don't plan to sell mine at all at this point. Some releases there is absolutely nothing. They raised their free shipping point to $80 and it often takes me 6-9 months to have enough basics to get a set. I did get the Thermos and the Mouse sets for Christmas, as well as the Christmas Cookie set that I just love.

Ellen Hutson-Still remains the best customer service ever. Fastest shipping anywhere, great sales, and great regular coupon codes. Huge selection of brands.

Unity-Mostly not my style, but when I do order I have found that the shipping is painfully slow. I placed an order 13 days ago and still do not have a shipping notice.  I mostly prefer clear stamps now so that is another issue.

Simon Says-Kind of high prices, but often they  have free shipping. Shipping is usually at least a week if not 2-3 so I never use them unless I am willing to wait.

Hallmark Scrapbooking-good prices and moderate shipping speed. Good selection, but it seems they are always out of stock on something.

Frantic Stamper--fast shipping, good service, limited selection.

Elizabeth Craft-good sales, limited product, but some unique things. Shipping is sometimes slow.

1-2-3 Stitch- Fast shipping, good selection, and my go-to place for dies a lot of the time.

Poppystamps/Memory Box-good service, fast shipping, I mainly only buy dies.

All of these are pretty much second to Amazon because if the price is low and because I  have Prime, it is often my first choice. I always check eBay too and have gotten some great deals this year.

All that being said, I have probably purchased 20-30% on FB craft sites when I don't care if the product is used.

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