Saturday, March 1, 2008

Nothing beats the smell of a new Craft Store!

Happy Saturday...as usual, where does the day go? I was just not in a super motivated mood, although I should be with all that I need (and want) to play with amongst my stamps and other inky accoutrement at home. I was curious to find out if the new Michaels near my house (within 2 miles, mind you) was open. Alas, it was.

Anymore, when I go to these stores, it's not as much as a shopper but as one that is "in" the industry. I look with such a different eye. How are our products displayed? Does it make any sense? What stamps do they have? What new stuff do they have? What other companies' stuff do they have? What are shoppers looking at? Does the staff have a clue, or more importantly, are they TRYING to get a clue (I'll take anyone that is trying over someone that doesn't give a rat's you know what).

My overall impression was that I was pleased with the display of our products and was thrilled to see they had Tim's Distressables 2 Book there and even more psyched to see the "Ink Essentials" book, right in front of the stamp pad aisle! Regarding stamps, I still think they need to update what they've got, but I totally understand the immense undertaking of trying to bring in a "basic" offering of stamps. Lots of alphabets, though, which is always good for the cross-over with scrapbooking.

I was pleased that a sales associate did come up to me and asked me if I needed any assistance. My brain couldn't help but think to itself "I could probably help you more than you can help me." In the jewelry aisle I did actually help a young male associate try to understand from a customer where the earring back thingies were...he was so happy when I was able to help point out what they were (I had just scanned that portion of the bead aisle!).

My most favorite part of the trip was walking down the widest aisle in the store (this used to be a Rag Shop, and it's a long space rather than wide, so it's different than from what you see at other stores; There in the "main" bead aisle were Margot Potter's, a.k.a. Miss Impatient Beader & Blogger's 3 BOOKS! All them, sticking out on a display thing from the pegboard, 1, 2, 3. I had to call Miss Beady on the stop and let her know... she was so excited! How cool is that?

All in all, I really think that if a "new" crafter has a good experience in a "big box" store, that will send them to search out the independents. I really believe that's another reason why I'm so vigilant about education. The more information out there, the more any level of crafter can learn and (hopefully) will want to learn more. So, I may just volunteer to do a few demos at what I can term as "my" (geographically speaking") Michaels store. I also met the manager of the papercraft area of the store; of course her first question was, "Have you met Tim Holtz?" When I said that we worked together, she almost plotzed...always fun!

My other adventure of the day was getting a new phone. Today in NJ it is now a primary offense to talk on the phone with the phone...you must be hands-free. I, of course, am a bad girl on that front, and my phone is over 2 years old and beat to sh*$. So, off to the AT&T store and I ended up with a Blackberry Pearl. I have to say that the sales associate was super. She gave me the straight scoop on what there is to offer and I came in on a good day, as I got their Bluetooth Bundle with all the other stuff so that I won't get stopped...now I just have to figure this new monstrosity out!

Please also check out the wonderful BeadBlogger Links of the week!

About.com Jewelry Making Tammy has news about a unique jewelry design contest going on at a relatively new site for designers of all types.

Art Bead Scene A Fit to Print Review that Sparkles!

Jewelry & Beading Cyndi takes a little trip into macrame land in an attempt to find something new to do with a V pendant!

Katie's Beading Blog The Triple Take projects for April are online for free download now! Read Katie's post for previews and links. And, don't forget to scroll back and visit this week's Ornament Thursday post.

Naughty Secretary Club Shame on Jen for spreading Cyber Gossip!

PearlEsq. Robin shares a fun technique with Ranger's new Adirondack Pigment Pens and Maya Road's new Sheer Sheets-it's sheerly colorific.

Snap out of it Jean! There's beading to be done! Aardvark art glass repost: with my hand-made sterling 3 in 3 necklace, I teamed up with Cathy Lybarger, an amazing glass artist, as she experimented with painting on the insides of her hot glass beads, using enamel! This is now in my Links chain maille gallery on my site!

The Impatient Blogger The Crafty Chica and The Impatient Beader share their craftastrophies in a no holds barred conversation. Yes, even the pros make crap sometimes. Leave your own True Craft Confessions in the comments!

Well, off now to do some more fun inky stuff! Enjoy the day, everyone!



Teresa said...

Oy vey, I just remembered about that cell phone/driving thingie. Thanks for reminding me!

Jen Crossley said...

sounds like an interesting trip to Michaels !!

Margot Potter said...

I'm pleased as pudding! How fun! I spend a fair amount of money at Michael's...even though I can buy things wholesale, there are a lot of last minute craft needs in my world.

Good for you on the cell phone Miss Beam...and please tell me that you don't text and drive. Should that even need a law? I mean...it seems so obvious!


ginny said...

Robin, you've been tagged...again.

Michelle McGee said...

Inkssentials is the best book out there for new stampers. I love using it in classes.