Category: Craftwell

#CreativeGoodness with Humor and Fun Projects That Start At The Bottom

quack me ups by quiltshopgalCreativity does have a humorous side.  This video, by Whats Up Moms, quacked me up and I wanted to share it with you today:


If you are using a MAC or have problems viewing this embedded video, here is a link where you can watch it directly in Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPG0Ob4dO8E&feature=youtu.be

Whats Up Mom also has an inspirational video tutorial to decorate our shoes that I wanted to share:

Here is a link to view this video directly in Youtube, should you have problems viewing the embedded version in my post:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ma3Lx_z7ro

Decorating your shoes is always fun.  It can be a great #kidfriendly project, fun project for family craft night, and a fun an creative project anytime.  It is also a great DIY way to recycle old shoes, or turn bland and inexpensive shoes into a beautiful piece of art.

While the possibilities for shoe art are endless, I wanted to share with you some project ideas that use some #ModernCreativeTools:

The Craftwell eBosser makes it fun to use ink filled pens to airbrush your shoes, as well as other projects.

The Craftwell eBrush is an amazing #ModernCreativeTool, which enables endless creative possibilities.  One fun idea was created by Debi Tullier who also shares inspirational projects and tips on her eBrush Facebook group.  She is amazingly creative. P1120877 masked

Thermoweb has just introduced a line of products, at the recent #CHAShow.  And they work well to decorate shoes (and other items too).  A few products, in the “Deco Foil” line are beginning to appear in craft stores and Amazon.com, but hopefully the entire line will soon be available this Spring.

10868128_10152577418303144_3806648058591169014_n

Sand & Sisel has an inspirational tutorial to doodle (or Zentangle) your style on your shoes.

Doodle-Your-Style1 (1)

 

 

Annemart Berendse has also written a book “Decorate Your Shoes: Create One-of-a-Kind Footwear“, which is packed with tips, tutorials and inspiration for decorating your shoes, as well as designs that are perfect for quilter and more!

If you have created any shoe art, I certainly hope you’ll share it in one of my weekly #CreativeGoodness Linky Parties.  But, to clarify, any form of creativity is always welcome for sharing in these parties.  I just have creativity with shoes on my mind. Like putting your best foot forward, to be ready to welcome in Spring.

Wearing shoes that you’ve decorated may be viewed as as a project that “starts at the bottom”, but what a great place to start.  Certainly is an excellent way for #CreativeGoodness and fun.

Don’t forget this is National Craft Month, which I like to think of as International Craft month. And, of course, I hope you’ll share your creativity in my weekly #CreativeGoodness Linky parties that I host every Friday.  I’d love to see any shoes you’ve decorated, or any form of creativity you’ve made and wish to share.

Have fun.  Shake it Off.

 

~Create ~ Inspire ~ Share ~ #CreativeGoodness

#CHAShow 2015 – Highlights Part 1

CHAlogoQuiltShopGal was able to attend the CHA Mega Show in Anaheim, CA, January 10-14th.   This amazing event was packed with professional seminars,an exceptional trade show with over 400 vendors, inspirational make-n-takes, demonstrations,  and buyers and attendees from all over the world.  It was  packed with #CreativeGoodness and wonderful new products, which I want to share insights with you.  And I also picked up some SWAG that I’ll be giving away.  But I can’t do it all in one post, so I’m releasing a series of articles and giveaways all about the #CHAShow!

ABOUT CHA

The Craft & Hobby Association (CHA) is a not-for-profit organization consisting of thousands of member companies engaged in the manufacture, distribution and retail sales of products in the nearly $30 billion U.S. craft and hobby industry. The Association offers a broad range of member services, including market research, education, as well as operates award-winning trade show events, the CHA Winter and CHA Summer Shows that attract industry professionals from all over the world. See www.craftsupershow.com for more information.

 

If you are on a MAC or having problems watching this embedded video, here is the link where you can watch it directly via YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqLqPAiFff4

Many Vendors release new products at this show, as well as share inspirational projects and ways to use their products.  AccuCut, Adorn It, ArtBin, Artistic, Brother/Scan N Cut,  Clover Needlecraft, Craftwell, Dritz/Prym, F&W Media, Fairfield, Fiskars, Grace Company/True Cut, Jack Dempsey Needle Art ,Leisure Arts, RIT,  Silhouette, Simplicity Creative Group, Sizzix, Thermoweb, and Tombow  are just some of the Vendors that had amazing products and inspirational projects that caught my attention.

My goal for attending this event, was to learn about new products that enable #CreativeGoodness.  I also wanted to look for #KidFriendly products, gain more in-depth understanding on electronic cutters, as well as look for inspirational project ideas!  While at the show I noticed a few trends in creativity:  Zentangle is skyrocketing, electronic die cutting has gone mainstream, metallic foils are definitely going to be the rage, and chalkboard products have an expanded versatility of applications from cards, organization, home decoration, as well as gifts.

While I wish I could share insights on every booth that caught my eye, today I need to focus on the highlights.  For some of these businesses, I will later be sharing more insights on specific products and even host a few SWAG giveaways.

MY FAVORITE BOOTH DISPLAY:

 Spinrite comprises well known brands Patons, Bernat, Caron, and Lily Sugar N Cream. Spinrite researches, develops, manufactures and markets a variety of consumer craft yarns, online patterns and pattern books.  They also created this amazing display called “Yarnia”.

spinrite

CRAFTWELL:

The eBrush and the Cut ‘N Boss are versatile tools that enable fun and creativity.  They also released a new eBrush Siphon Adaptor Kit at the show, which  allows you to add liquid paints for a variety of projects.  You can also now use food coloring to easily decorate cakes!  For those that work with fabrics, don’t overlook the power of embellishing fabrics, quilts, clothing, accessories and more to create a unique look.  Can’t find the perfect color for a button ?  No worries, when you have an eBrush as you can easily paint one for the perfect color.  Also introduced were new embossing folders perfect for those that enjoy embossing paper, metals and more with the Cut ‘N Boss (or original eBosser).

 

craftwell copy

FAIRFIELD:

Introduced  two new products:

Oly Fun, a water resistant, indoor/outdoor, no hemming needed, does not frey available in 18 fun colors that are solid-colors throughout with no front or back. There is no grain, and in turn, no selvedge edge to manage. It does not fray, so it makes for incredibly easy sewing with no hemming required. It can be die-cut, and because it doesn’t fray, has a clean and crisp look that stays that way over time. It can be folded, cut, glued scored, colored on, painted and so much more

Foamology – Just Peel, Stick, and Wrap.  A line of bio-based foams that can be used for cushioning or wall art and home decor.  One product, in this line, is Design Foam tiles and panels with stickybase adhesive on one sidewhich enables th maker to create decorative fabric or paper covered canvases with hardly any tools.  You wrap it like a present.

fairfield

ELECTRONIC DIE CUTTERS VS ELECTRONIC CUTTERS:

While there were five brands of electronic cutters (ecutters) at the show, Cricut, nor the new AccuQuilt GO! Big.      Both the Craftwell Cut ‘n boss and the GO! Big are electronic “die” cutting machines where you need to purchase dies that can cut ~8-10 layers of fabric.  The cut ‘n boss also allows use of various brands of embossing folders, perfect for paper or metal embossing.

The Brother Scan N Cut, Silhouette Portrait and Cameo, Sizzix Eclipse 2, Artistic and Cricuit Explore are all electronic cutters that can allow you to cut an endless number designs, one layer at a time (e.g. paper, plastic, fabric, etc.). Each also have some form of proprietary software that will allow you to combine, create your own unique designs and more.   While I do not have hands on expertise with each of these machines, I have been researching e:cutters for a long time.  Each of these machines offer #CreativeGoodness, but depending on your objectives and computer skills, you can match the best one to your individual needs. In the future, I’ll share more insights, but today I simply want to share some highlights of what I saw at CHA:



 

 

BROTHER SCAN N CUT

An e:cutter with a built-in 300 dpi scanner that can cut fabric, papers, cardstock, craft metals, rhinestone sheets, vinyl, etc. This was the only scanner that accepted my challenge, at the #CHAShow to cut a heart out of blended wool felt, and it did an excellent job cutting it in one pass!  Felt is a difficult item for e:cutters, which with patience and the right stabilizer most of these machines can cut, but may not provide as clean a cut as what the Scan N Cut did on “unstabilized” felt!

The Brother booth was also packed with inspirational project examples, using a variety of materials for broad scope of Crafters. And they also showed how the cut fabric shapes can be beautifully embroidered, as demonstrated on their embroidery machines.  They also had a demo of their Heat Press Machines, which I must confess I was drooling over.

Brother also has Cloud based software for creating your own designs on the Scan-N-Cut. List price $499

brother

SIZZIX ECLIPSE 2

An e:cutter that can cut fabric, papers, cardstock, craft metals, rhinestone sheets, vinyl, etc. There booth was absolutely packed with #CreativeGoodness and so many inspirational project examples, it made it a challenge to leave their booth vs stay and playing.  List Price on the Eclipse 2 is $299.

sizzix

 

SILHOUETTE

An e:cutter than can cut fabric, papers, cardstock, craft metals, rhinestone sheets, vinyl, etc.  At the #CHAShow, Silhouette had a fun make-n-take where you could write out your name, take a picture of it, and use the Silhouette Cameo to cut it out on vinyl to make an iron-on tote with your name on it.  Needless to say, that make-n-take was very popular at the show.  And, I know of two quilt shops that were inspired to now carry the Silhouette Cameo for sale in their shop.  One, will even be giving a demonstration, using this same make-n-take, at the upcoming Road to California Conference and Quilt Show this month in Anaheim, CA..  List Price on the Cameo is $299 and the Portrait is $199.

In addition to the make-n-take, Silhouette showcased their new accessory to help with cutting rolls of vinyl. appropriate called a “roll feeder” which will retail for ~$40.

silhouette

ARTISTIC (Janome)

An e:cutter, The Edge, by Artistic is a versatile electronic die cutting tool. It comes with software that allows you to create your own designs that can be shared (or sold) in SVG file format, as well as other formats. The software will also allow you to easily digitize your designs for machine embroidery applique. Also, you can create print-n-cuts, cut templates for crystal applications, emboss craft metals. and much more. While I do not have hands on experience with the software or machine, it feels like a great product with a good value

There are two models of The Edge, a 12″ version with a MSRP of $799 (typical retail is $399) and a 15″ version with a MSRP of $899 (typical retail is $499).

Artistic

 

I’ll be sharing more insights on the #CHAShow, and many new products introduced at this show, as well as hosting some giveaways for fun SWAG, very soon.

You can find CHA at:

http://craftandhobby.org
http://craftandhobby.wordpress.com/
https://www.facebook.com/CraftandHobby?v=wall&ref=ts
https://twitter.com/CraftandHobby

Mark your calendars:  Jan 2016 is the 75th Anniversary of CHA!

 

 

#CHAShow 2015

Here is a list of previous posts about the annual #CHAShows:

 

QuiltShopGal is interested in knowing if you have an electronic cutter, what brand you may have.  And, if you don’t if you are considering getting one (or not).  e:Cutters are growing in popularity and I’ve certainly found they enable #CreativeGoodness for a large variety of creativity.FairFa

#CHAShow – CHA Mega Show 2014

CHAlogo
SewCalGal was able to attend the CHA Mega Show in Anaheim, CA, January 10-14th.   This amazing event was packed with professional seminars,an exceptional trade show with over 400 vendors, inspirational make-n-takes, demonstrations,  and buyers and attendees from all over the world.  And, I’m delighted to be able to share insights with you about this show today.
 
First, for those of you not familiar with CHA it is an association of Craft and Hobby Professionals from around the world.  It is an International non-profit organization with members involved in the design, manufacturing, distribution and retail sells of products in the nearly $30 billion U.S. craft and hobby industry.  And while they host many professional events throughout the year, the annual CHA Mega Show in Southern California is one of the largest and most opportunistic for “those in the business” to participate in.  To clarify, CHA is a great organization and SewCalGal highly encourages those in the business to become members, if you are not one already.  
 
Before I share insights on the Mega Show, I want to share that this is such a large show it is impossible to see everything in a day. Plus, there are multiple days of workshops and professional presentations.  And I’m only going to share glimpses of new products that caught my attention at the Trade Show.  While I attended this event to search for new products, I was also highly interested in learning more about ecutters.  In this post I’ll share some insight, but I’ll be writing a separate article about ecutters in the very near future.  
 
Here are highlights of what caught my attention at this show:
june tailor hexie
June Tailor has new tool for cutting Hexies: “You Hexie Thing – Hexie Ruler”  can easily cut perfect hexagons in nine sizes; 1-1/2″, 2″, 2-1/2″, 3″, 3-1/2″, 4″, 4-1/2″, 5″ and 6″.  And, like their  Shape Cut Ruler, which cuts perfect strips of fabric in various sizes, you can cut multiple layers of fabric using your rotary cutter.
 
There are also free quilt project instructions you can download for this ruler: The Hexie Thing Strip Quilt, The Oh So Hexie Quilt, and other Hexie projects too
 
And June Tailor has a new Diamond Ruler that will also easily cut diamonds in 1″ to 6″ diamonds in 1/4″ increments without measuring.
 
 

CRAFTWELL

ebrush

The new eBrush, by Craftwell, was introduced at CHA and was also honored as one of CHA’s top 20 products at the show, with a 2nd place award.  It is an airbrush compressor that turns markers, by various manufacturers, into spray art. The eBrush will be available in early April for retail purchases.  

While this product is clearly going to be popular with crafters, SewCalGal also anticipates it to quickly become popular with fibre artists and quilters alike.  Think of the fun and creativity this new tool will unleash to allow quilters to use stencils to paint on fabric, to free-form embellish fabrics, or to complete paint your own fabric and create your own unique piece of art!  

I also thoroughly enjoyed the ebrush demonstration by very talented Debi Tullier and artist “Slive”.   And, I thought you might also enjoy this youtube video by Noel Hyman.

This product will be on HSN for $150 late spring, making it a reasonably priced air brush tool that you can use to paint on fabric, paper wood, food or more.

LION BRAND YARN

lion brand exhibit at CHA

Lion Brand Yarn had a spectacular booth that was decorated with the “Seven Wonders of the Yarn World”, all made with beautiful irons.  I hope this exhibit travels to other shows, as it was super cute!

BROTHER SCAN N CUT
brother scan n cut

Brother has recently introduced a new ecutter, called the Scan-N-Cut.  It is the first ecutter that includes a built in 300 dpi scanner.

Like other ecutters, this product is marketed for scrapbooking and other crafts, but unlike other ecutters this product has done the best job SewCalGal has seen to-date to build in functionality that makes this product perfect for quilting, sewing and embroidery enthusiasts.   There are many options for how you may want to use this product to create.  

For example you may want to doodle on paper, scan it and cut out part of that design.  You may want to scan and cut a shape on fabric for applique.  You can even cut out quilt block pieces, where you set the size that you want your block to be, and stitch out your blocks.  

There are over 600 built-in Designs, including 100 quilt patterns, plus 5 fonts.  And don’t forget you can scan designs and cut, as well as use various software packages to create designs that you can create SVG files to cut using this device. 

 Like other ecutters it can accomodate 12″x12″ and 12″x24″ cutting mats, as well as rolls of vinyl.  Retail is $499.

 
 
 

SewCalGal also wants to point out that this amazing 3D swirly snowflake creation is designed by the very talented Jeanie Sumrall-Ajero (Kaleidoscope Collections).  Jeanie has been using the Scan-N-Cut to create a variety of designs and sharing insights on her blog, which you may want to follow to also see what she creates with this ecutter, as well as see how she uses it combined with her super fun and creative Kaleidoscope Collections software.

ECLIPS2 BY SIZZIX
Sizzix introduced eclips2, their 2nd and more powerful electronic cutting system.  Their first ecutter was actually introduced 5 years ago!  This version has an enhanced motor, industrial strength gears, reduced noise and other improvements to help get more precise cuts.  It is also accompanied with free eCAL lite software to allow you to create your own designs, plus cut, score, draw and edit unique shapes for unique projects.
sizzix eclips2
SewCalGal liked the preview feature that allows you to place cuts on materials that may have been previously cut, to allow you to place your new cut to be efficient and optimize use of your materials.  There are also two new models of the ECLIPS2, one of which, will incorporate bluetooth technology to allow users to use the ipads or tablets to work with the eclips2. To clarify, both models can be connected to a computer via a USB cable, but the bluetooth model will allow you to easily bypass the USB cable when used with your tablet.   Retail of the basic eclips2, which will introduce this Spring, is $299 and the model that is bluetooth compatible will be introduced at a slightly higher price (~$50-$60 more), early summer.

These ecutters are definitely marketed towards crafters, with less emphasis on quilters.  But they will cut fabric even though they do not come with a blade for cutting fabric (you simply adjust your settings to cut and need to make sure your fabric is starched well and/or stabilized with a good adhesive stabilizer).   They also come with a basic version of the software and the Designer software version can be purchased for a $25-$50 upgrade price (final price has not yet been determined).

The cutting size for both these new models is 12″x12″, 12″x24″, or a roll of vinyl.
 
Also, Sizzix will be releasing a new ESHAPE store this Spring which will offer pre-designed ecut files that can be purchased and downloaded for use on your eclips cutters.
SILHOUETTE

New accessories for the Silhouette ecutters were introduced:  a stencil material,  12″x24″vellum sheets and new adhesive mats that have less tack that make it easier when cutting vellum.

SIMPLICITY EZ QUILTING
There were many wonderful products in the Simplicity booth. SewCalGal was particularly drawn to the SewEZ Jelly Roll ruler, the Joseph’s Coat acrylic templates, and the Inkadinkado products.  The Inkadinkado products just seemed to be fun to be able to stamp and create your own fabrics and I think they would look wonderful with beautiful free-motion quilting.  SewCalGal definitely wants to spend more time playing with these products.
Simplicity EZI Quilting

TOMBOW
tombow at CHA 2014
Tombow had an inspirational booth filled with beautiful art made with their creative markers and other craft products.   

CHAMELON
cameleon pens

Cameleon introduced some very new marking pens that are alcohol based markers that are refillable and the pen nibs allow excellent control for marking, and amazing color range.  These markers and their gorgeous colors look like they’d be great with artists, crafters and mixed media artists. 

While SewCalGal was told, during a demonstration, that these markers are permanent on most materials, SewCalGal has not yet had a chance to test them on fabrics. But I want to heighten awareness of these new pens, as I think they are going to be very popular.  

CHAMELEON SKINZ 

cameleon fabrics

Cameleon Skinz introduced inspirational fabrics and tapes that change color based on temperature.  You can use your hands, ice, etc.to doodle on these materials.  

Fabrics by Cameleon Skinz have been popular for use in children’s hospitals, as they certainly are more inviting for children and they are easy to clean.  But, SewCalGal thinks there are endless possibilities for these products.

Custom fabric orders can be made for different temperature sensitivity, as well as colors.  You can even embed secret messages as well as specifications can be set to allow an initial writer to write a secret message that someone else can then reveal it!  

SewCalGal can certainly think of many projects that would be fun to create with these temperature sensitive materials.  But more awareness needs to be made to help this material cross into the quilting, sewing and even embroidery world.    

 

I hope you enjoyed hearing my insights on the CHA show. With over 400 vendors, it was quite a challenge as to which products I could share insights with you today. 

 

The NBC Today Show also attended the CHA Mega Show.

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

SewCalGal also hopes to share more insights on many of these products in the near future and maybe a few sponsored giveaways too!  But, at a minimum I hope you’ll keep you eye out for these products as they appear in your local sewing and craft shops, or favorite online shops.  And, if you don’t see them do let store owners or managers know that you are interested in having them carry these products in their store.  After all, exceptional retail stores do appreciate hearing from customers as to what you’d like to have them offer for sale in their stores.

For more information on CHA:

https://www.craftandhobby.org
https://www.facebook.com/CraftandHobby
https://www.youtube.com/user/CraftandHobby
https://twitter.com/craftandhobby
http://craftandhobby.wordpress.com/

Here is a list of previous posts about the annual #CHAShows:

An eBosser Blog Hop: Fun, Inspiration, Giveaway and More!

SewCalGal has had fun creating with the eBosser by Craftwell an electronic die cutting tool.  Unlike other die cutting systems, this product comes with all the platforms that you need to use dies from a variety of manufacturers (e.g. AccuCut dies, AccuQuilt, Sizzix, Fiskars, Cuttlebug, QuickKutz, Spellbinders, and more.)  And, it not only cuts all sorts of fabric and media but it also embosses.  You can find more info on previous reviews and insights that I’ve shared with you about this product, but today I want to share insights with you on how I used the eBosser to “super quickly” cut oodles of beautiful Hoffman batiks to create a scrappy table topper.

The ebosser is so easy to use to cut fabric (and other media) using AccuQuilt GO!, Sizzix and many other brands of dies.  I’ve certainly enjoyed using it for embossing paper and metal and I’m planning a project that will incorporate embossed leather!  But, it is truly so much easier to use to cut fabric than other manual die cutting machines (and it is wider than other electronic die cutting machines, allowing you to use a broader selection of dies).
ebosser


I’m fond of hand sewing Hexies.  They are easy to make and do can be done in a variety of methods, but I’m doing the English Paper Piecing (EPP) technique using paper pieces from PaperPieces.com.  The eBosser worked well with my AccuQuilt hexie die, but Sizzix also has many hexie dies in a variety of sizes at a reasonable price.  


I pre-cut strips ~ 1/4″ larger than the shape I was cutting on my die and layered 8 pieces of fabric on my die, covering the shape.
P1010369 masked
Layered 8 layers of fabric on top of my die, which was sandwiched between the A & D plates for the eBosser before I fed them into the machine for cutting.
P1010154 cropped
I quickly had a good four yards + of hexies cut in various colors. Shown below are just a few of the pieces I cut. I ended up with three large ziplocks full of hexies!
P1010411 masked
I place a paper piece in the center of the hexie, on the wrong side of the fabric, leaving about 1/4″ extra fabric around he paper.  I finger press a fold and baste through the paper.  You can also baste by not going thru the paper, but as I throw my EPP blocks and hexies into ziploc bags to take with me on trips, I like to baste thru the paper. And, I find I can re-use the paper many times even when I’ve punched needle holes through them.

P1010503 masked
There are a variety of hexie designs you can create (e.g. flowers, diamonds, circles, shading, etc).  The project I’m working on now I’m using a four hexie patch shape for the core block.  And then I’ll play with color arrangement to make various table toppers that I will use as gifts.P1010550 masked
While I only have a few four patch blocks completed, you can get a feeling of how quickly this project comes together. And, how fun it can be to arrange the blocks to create the color affect you like in a table topper.
P1010549 masked
Once the pieces are arranged in a pleasing color scheme you can hand stitch the four patch blocks together.  I will most likely applique this top to a border, before I sandwich it and quilt it.  But, I’ve also used a rotary cutter to square it up and add a border, as well as not add a border.  Seems no matter how you mix the patches, border or not, projects made with hexies always look great.  And, truth be told, I’ve never been able to make them faster and easier than when I’ve used the eBosser!


For a limited time (this weekend only), eBosser has a special where you can get three (3) embossing folders vs one, found in the typical eBosser package.  And you get a rubber mat and shim.  The retail value of $264, the savings of this special is about $65 (The bundle price this weekend is only $199). If embossing interests you, you may want to check out this special with eBosser.

30040_benefits_300x250
Did I mention a Blog Hop?


eBosser is hosting a blog hop this weekend where you can visit the participating blogs and find oodles of tips and inspiration for using an eBosser.   Here is the line up (everyone posts today).

SewCalGal {where you are now}
Mountainside Bride
Purple Paper Paradise
Llama Tales
Jazmin RoseLawn Fawn 
The Official Craftwell Blog


You can also find eBosser info at:
http://www.craftwellusa.com/products/ebosser
http://blog.craftwellusa.com/
https://www.facebook.com/ecraftbycraftwell
http://pinterest.com/teamcraftwell/
http://www.youtube.com/ecraftbycraftwell

Did I mention a Giveaway?

SewCalGal will giveaway to one lucky follower a kit that includes pre-cut hexies, cut with the eBosser and the AccuQuilt hexie die, using Hoffman Batiks and precut papers from PaperPieces.com.  The kit will be sufficient to make a hexie table topper, which will contain the same number of pieces for the table runner I’m making now.  If you are interested in winning this kit, simply be a follower and leave a comment on this post letting me know you want to win and make a hexie table topper.

The winner will be announced the end of September.  And I’ll update this post to announce the lucky winner, and hopefully show you my finished hexie table toppers too!

UPDATE:  Time to announce the winner of this giveaway.  The winner will receive pre-cut Hoffman Batiks for all the hexies, as well as the background/border fabric to make a table topper. BTW, Photos for these completed table toppers and pattern will be shared soon.  

Using the Random Number Generator, lucky number is #9 

Who said..


Congratulations to Bea.  I’ll send you an email, but ultimately I need your snail mail address to mail you this kit.

Mixed Media Playtime – Embossing With Metals Using the eBosser

Many quilters that enjoy mixed-media Art Quilts have  incorporated metal embossing in their projects to create spectacular results.  There are a number of products from copper foils, metal sheets, wire cloth, metal screens, etc. and you can texturize, stain and paint.  Recently, I’ve been exploring using Craftwell’s eBosser with various embossing templates from eBosser, Sizzix and others.  The eBosser easily embosses lightweight metals and the possibilities of what you can create are endless.

ebosser

It is quite easy to place metals, cardstock, papers, etc inside of embossing folders.  And, then you simply stack them in the ebosser layers and feed them into the electronic eBosser.

P1010150

I decided to play with some inexpensive foil that can be easily found at Home Depot, Lowes, or other hardware stores.  Pipe Wrap Insulation tape, or other metal plumbing tapes, can work well for embossing projects.

P1010159 sewcalgal embossing with craftwell

Such metal embossing can easily be added to greeting cards.

P1010162 embossing with craftwell

And you can add them to fabric to create that extra sparkle.  Here I added some embossed metal to a simple luggage tag.

P1010163 sewcalgal embosser craftwell
I’m far from being an expert on embossing metals, but certainly having fun.  If you have experience working with metals in mixed media, embossing metals, etc. I’d love to hear your recommendations.  And, I promise to share more as I have more time to play with metals and the eBosser.

For more info on the eBosser
Benefits of an eBosser
Value of an eBosser

http://www.craftwellusa.com/products/ebosser
http://blog.craftwellusa.com/
https://www.facebook.com/ecraftbycraftwell
http://pinterest.com/teamcraftwell/
http://www.youtube.com/ecraftbycraftwell

 

New Kid On The Cutting Block – eBosser Product Review

There are a variety of die cutting devices on the market, but I’m happy to be able to share insights with you on a new electronic die cutting device that is compatible with using dies from a number of manufacturers, as well as embossing templates.  And, it is available at a reasonable price.  But, first, I want to clarify that I’m sharing my own opinions in this review and I do not receive any payment.  I simply received a “loaner” product for evaluation purposes.

Craftwell released the eBosser, an Electronic Embosser and Die Cutter in 2012.  The target audience of this product has been scrapbookers and crafters.   SewCalGal views this product will become very popular among quilting, sewing and embroidery enthusiasts. As such, I’m excited to be able to share insights with you  about the eBosser today.

ebosser

I want to clarify, that I contacted Craftwell to help me research and share insights on this new product. Thanks to the Craftwell Team, I obtained a “loaner” unit for evaluation purposes. I’ve put this unit thru the paces, trying to push it hard cutting a number of layers of fabric, dies from a variety of manufacturers, and a variety of medias cut.   Overall, I’m so delighted with the functionality, quality, and value of this product,.  My conclusion is that this product offers great value to anyone interested in cutting fabric and/or other medias with any brand(s) of dies.  It will open up greater versatility than using a fabric die cutting machine designed to work on one brand of dies, and of the die cutters that will support cutting of two or more brands of dies, the eBosser is still the most versatile that I’ve seen, with a few exceptions.

The eBosser was designed to accept dies that do not exceed 8 1/2″ in width by 12″ in length, but at the CHA Winter Show SewCalGal saw that the Craftwell team has created adapters that will allow longer dies to be used in the eBosser.  As SewCalGal learns more, I will gladly share (e.g. price point for longer adapters/mats, how to order, etc.).  But for now, I can confidently say that the eBosser can handle dies up to the 8 1/2″ x 12″ size.

Unlike other die cutting systems, this product comes with all the platforms that you need to use dies from a variety of manufacturers (e.g. AccuCut dies, AccuQuilt, Sizzix, Fiskars, Cuttlebug, QuickKutz, Spellbinders, and more.)  The User Manual does provide easy to follow visual instructions for how to build a sandwich with platforms appropriate for each of these manufacturers.  And, it is designed to reject a sandwich that wasn’t stacked properly, but still, SewCalGal strongly encourages users to closely follow the instructions in the User Manual for stacking platforms (aka building sandwiches) before feeding into your ebosser.

While the user manual includes a platform chart, here is a link to a platform chart that will give you an idea of what the eBosser does to stack sandwiches to handle a variety of dies:
 http://www.craftwellusa.com/sites/default/files/images/uploads/PlatformCombination.pdf

The eBosser can cut paper, vinyl, card stock, fabric, plastic, thin wood, metal, leather, foam, chipboard,  and much more. Any material up to 3mm in thickness!  For cutting fabric, it can cut up to 8 layers of fabric at a time.  And, a cut typically takes ~18 seconds for the die to go completely thru the eBosser!

HPIM6850 HPIM6857 candy tree

{above} I used the eBosser and an AccuQuilt die to cut wax paper in the shape of Christmas trees, which were stitched around the edge and filled with candy.

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{above} It was certainly fun and fast creating applique’ shapes using the eBosser and the AccuQuilt die to cut 8 layers of scrap fabric to create an applique’ quilt.

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{above} And, it was fun using a Sizzix die to cut scraps to applique’ for a quilt for a young girl..

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{above} The eBosser quickly cut ducks, with an AccuQuilt die, for a  baby quilt for an upcoming Operation Homefront’s Baby Showers.

Embossing was a big plus with the eBosser offering up so many more crafting opportunities. It also comes with one Embossing folder and is compatible with using embossing templates from most manufacturers too!

P1000642
{above} It was very easy and fast to make a greeting card with an embossed owl using a Sizzix die and the embossing template that came with the eBosser. I love the embossed texture. Now, I’m wanting to use the eBosser embossing on leather for a variety of projects. Think of purses with embossed leather, or how an embossed leather luggage tag would make a nice gift!.

SewCalGal used the eBosser to make snowflake for the Sandy Hook School’s PTA request.  The eBosser made it very easy to cut and emboss snowflakes.  And a package was shipped to Sandy Hook on behalf of Janet McElroy (Jan’s Musings Again) as well as another package from SewCalGal.  The eBosser made it so easy and fast to make the paper and mixed media snowflakes. {just wish I could find photos from my original batch}.

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{above} check out the detail in these two snowflakes to see the difference that the embossing makes.  Wish my camera could do a better job, but I think you’ll see the beautiful texture the embossing template created.

There are a variety of videos on the eBosser, including many made by Craftwell, but I found this video to be one that does the best job (that I could find) for sharing insights on the eBosser.

A fewspecs on the eBosser that I think you might be interested in:

  • 15 lbs (approx)
  • 6.9H x 12.4W x 8.9D
  • 100 – 240 v
  • Multiple Platforms included: 1 – Embossing/Cutting Platform, 3 – Base platforms, and 1 – shim

Here is a quick comparison of the eBosser to other comparable die cutting systems:

eBosser AccuQuilt GO! Baby Sizzix Big Shot 
~15 lbs
w motor
15.82 lbs
no motor
tbd
cuts up to 8 layers of fabric cuts up to 6 layers of fabric cuts up to 8 layers of fabric
cuts and embosses cuts (no embossing) cuts and embosses
$229 MRSP retail $139 retail $99
ALL GO! Baby dies, all AccuQuilt AND Sizzix dies < 8 1/2″ width, and many more dies and embossing templates from other Manufacturers. compatible with 43 dies All Sizzix dies < 6″ and most dies <6″ from other manufacturers
mats, platforms, one embossing folder come with the unit mats are extra (not shipped in the box) mats and platform come with unit
1 year limited warranty 1 year limited warranty 3 year limited warranty

SewCalGal hopes if you are looking for a die cutting machine you’ll check out the new eBosser.  Great product at a great price.  While it may appear more expensive, don’t forget you get a motor, platforms, mats and the ability to cut more dies than a GO! Baby or Sizzix Big Shot can.  You can also find the eBosser at their online store Amazon, Jo-Ann’s and a variety of crafting stores.

For a limited time, eBosser has a special where you can get two embossing mats vs one, found in the typical eBosser package.  That is a $34 value, so if embossing interests you, you may want to check out this special with eBosser.

And, don’t forget to check back soon, to see what I create with all the cuts I’ve made with the eBosser!  I have some fun projects and tutorials planned for the new eBosser and hope to share with you soon!

For more info on the eBosser

Benefits of an eBosser
Value of an eBosser

http://www.craftwellusa.com/products/ebosser
http://blog.craftwellusa.com/
https://www.facebook.com/ecraftbycraftwell
http://pinterest.com/teamcraftwell/
http://www.youtube.com/ecraftbycraftwell

SewCalGal also plans on sharing more insights on the eBosser in the near future, with more examples on how this product can help quilting, sewing and embroidery enthusiasts create.

What do you like about the new eBosser?

 

CHA Winter Trade Show 2011

This weekend I had the opportunity to attend the CHA Winter Conference & Trade Show 2011 in Los Angeles, Ca..  This show is packed with excellent conferences appropriate for anyone in the craft & hobby business, including quilting, sewing and embroidery businesses.  The Trade Show that is held along with the conference is also a fantastic trade show, with vendors and attendees coming from around the world, representing a large variety of craft & hobby businesses (e.g. quilting, sewing, embroidery,fibre-artists,  jewelry, scrapbooking, etc.).  It is fun to see so many talented people and amazing businesses come together under one roof and share their insights to inspire creativity and business health.

I’m excited to have an opportunity to share with you some of the items that new products at this show, which I think will make a difference in our world of quilting, sewing and embroidery, as well as related items that you may be interested in for yourself, or for gifts.

Many of these items I hope to be able to research and share more insights with you in the future, but for now I wanted to provide you a summary of what I found at the CHA Winter Trade Show:

Cutting Tools:

Making Memories’ new Slice Fabrique is a lightweight cordless cutting tool that can really make it easy to create quilts with applique designs and fonts.  While the Slice Elite is designed to cut paper and capable of cutting fabric, the new Slice Fabrique also cuts both, but has some features that make this new product better for those that will primarily be using it for cutting fabric.  There are many new dies memory cards designed specifically for quilters that compliment the Fabrique model, but are also compatible with the Slice. While typical Slice memory cuts max out at a 4″ cut, these new designs enable an applique design using multiple pieces that can result in a large than 4″ applique design.  Each design can also be created with a shadow feature, as well as mirroring image.  The new Fabrique also has a special holder that essentially weights down the cutting device to make it a hands free device, unlike the earlier Slice.  And, the new Fabrique can also cut items popularly cut by the Slice (e.g. paper).  I’m excited about the new memory cards, with designs by popular designers, that will soon be on the market.  And, I hope to be sharing more insights on these new products with you very soon.

Creatopia by Xyron is a new cutting system that will cut fabric, but is primarily a paper cutting & embossing tool.  It can use any AccuQuilt GO! die that works with the GO! Baby (e.g. up to 6 1/2″ wide)  and what I found really cool is that it uses 3 normal rotary blades that you can align to cut fabric strips of any width!  This is a big plus for those that primarily want to cut strips and don’t want to buy or store a die for each size of strip that they want to cut, up to any strip combination of 12″ wide.

eCraft by craftwell has several electronic cutting systems to cut & emboss paper, and cut fabric without the use of a mat.  The rep giving the demo did not appear to be that familiar with how quilters use cutters, as many answers to my questions did not make sense.  Still, this looks like a cutter that is worthy of consideration for those looking for an electronic cutting system. It can also cut adhesive vinyl.  And it comes with software that allows you to create your own designs. I’m definitely wanting to investigate this tool further and plan to share insights with you.

silhouette is a versatile product that comes bundled with software where you can create your own designs to cut designs on paper, vinyl, and fabric.  They have recently introduced a printable heat transfer product that comes in two forms:  Clean cut and sewable.  This is a fun and versatile cutting product that is great for home decorations, scrapbooking and I believe will become very popular with sewing, quilting and embroidery enthusiasts in the near future.

AccuCut was at the show, promoting their cutting system to cut paper.  The AccuQuilt side of their business, focused on cutters for fabric, sadly, was not represented at this show.

SizzIx
It was fun to see Tim Holtz demonstrate his new Vagabond cutter, which is an electronic cutter primarily targeted at scrapbookers.  There seems to be some potential for cutting fabric, but the demonstrations and informations that I’ve obtained to-date from Tim and/or Sizzix have not been able to answer all my questions, thus I’m holding off on forming an opinion on this product at this time.  While I have previously seen demonstrations of the Sizzix Big Shot and Big Shot Pro, I liked to see more emphasis by Sizzix on what these products can also do for quilters.  While I’ve not been able to use one, the versatility of these products to use a variety of manufacturer’s dies is a big plus.    Still, I’m holding off to forming an official opinion until I have more hands on time with this Big Shot Pro as I’ve heard a variety of opinions from fellow quilters and Sizzix appears to have their focus on scrapbookers vs quilters.  But, like some of the other cutters, both of the Big Shots are able to use dies from other manufacturers (e.g. AccuQuilt GO! and Studio dies).

Simplicity has a fun booth packed with their products.  While their Rotary Cutting Machine has been on the market for awhile, I wanted to include it in this group.  I was able to see it demonstrated cutting fabric strips from 3/8″ to 2 3/4″, of any length.  I also saw a demonstration of using craft blades to cut and/or mark metal tape for use in fibre-arts and liked this application very much.  The price for this product is very reasonable, making this a good product for someone primarily interested in cutting strips.

Fiskars introduced many new products, including some very cool new Titanium Comfort Loop Rotary Cutters (45mm and 60mm) with a new updated handle to reduce hand fatigue.  And the blade has new titanium coating for improved durability and lasting sharpness.

Publishers:
CT Publishing had a nice collection of the STASH books.  I also caught a demo of their new TAP media which I found to be an exciting way to transfer images to ATCs, t-shirts and other medias.  I’m definitely looking forward to trying out this media and will certainly share more insights when I do.

Random House was introducing many new books at this show.  “Modern Log Cabin Quilt“, by Susan Beal will be on sale in March, along with other new books that I’m not able to share insights with you at this time.  And do be sure to check out “Dare to be Square Quilting” by Boo Davis.  I had a chance to check out this book at this show, and it really has some fun designs and excellent tips.

Leisure Arts
There were some wonderful new books introduced at this show.  So new, in fact, I can’t share much info with you at this time.  But keep an eye out for a new release from Leisure Arts called “3 Times a Charm”.  And I hope to share more  insights on this new book, as well as others, as soon as they are officially release.

Storage & Organization:
ArtBin is celebrating their 35th Anniversary this year with some wonderful new product introductions.  New color collection solutions boxes can are available in purple, rasberry and teal, along with a translucent clear.  They also have a cute new Magnetic Slime line case that is perfect for those that like to keep needles, scissors, bobbins and/or pins in a small case.  Their Tote Express originally targeted for scrapbookers, now has a version to carry small sewing machines.  I am a big fan of ArtBin Super Satchel Series,  and was drooling over their Super Satchel Cubes to help organize your sewing room.  They also have a new Super Satchel Thread box and an option to help store 20mm, 32mm and 45mm spools in a large Satchel.

DBest Products has a  Smart Cart that is lightweight, yet durable,  cart that collapses to take up minimal storage space.  While originally designed to help scrapbookers, I think this cart will also be of interest to many quilting, sewing and embroidery enthusiasts.  It comes in black, blue or navy and holds 12″x12″ paper (or small sewing machines and other sewing items that do not exceed this width.  The wholesale price is $12.50, with a retail at $25.  I also understand they have a wider version, but it was not exhibited at this show. This is certainly a cart that has caught my attention. When I can get some hands on time with these carts, I’ll certainly share more insights.  I the meantime, I hope you’ll get to check out DBest Products’ Smart Cart.  And, I also think this could be a great product for quilting & sewing stores to consider as a product for their customers. After all, we all like great storage that also helps us take our projects and tools to classes and retreats.

Fabric Manufacturers/Designers
Adornit is a new manufacturer of beautiful 100% cotton fabrics and pattern books.  With their business background firmly established in the world of scrapbooking, they’ve used their creative talents to expand out into the world of quilting.  They launched fabric line at Spring Quilt Market 2010 and they continue to expand their product offering.  This is definitely a brand name that will soon be familiar with every quilter.  Beautiful fabrics, lovely pattern books (aka quilt books and more).  I look forward to sharing more insights with  you on Adornit in the near future.

Eco-Fi, a product of Foss Manufacturing Company, LLC, produces engineered, non-woven fabrics and specialty synthetic fibers.  These fibres are all high-quality polyester fiber made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastic bottles, completely made in the US.   An ecotote fabric that also looked excellent to machine embroider on or embellish to make beautiful totes and an ecofleece fabric that looked wonderful to make stuffed toys, pillows and other fun sewn items from.  I definitely am planning on doing more research on their products as I’d like to find more ways to go green, in the future, with my love of sewing.

Oil Cloth By The Yard  is the largest oil cloth company in the country.  They offer beautiful oil cloth by the yard, as well in a number of kits (to make lunch bags, pennants, tote bags, market bags, pouches and more) Freckled Sage is the side of their business with pre-made products (e.g. totes, aprons, placemats, bibs, tablecloths, etc.).  They also take custom orders.  The oil cloth was of excellent quality with a large range of spectacular designs.

Notions & Accessories
Prym Consumer USA (Dritz Sewling Notions) introduced many new products.  Their new OmniAngle 6″x14″ Wedge Ruler (RA624) allows you to create fans, circles, wedges and spirals making it a handy to make table runners, wall hangings and tree skirts.

DMC introduced several new products: ready-to-stitch plushed stuff animals (Monkey, Duck & Pig),10 new beautiful Color Infusions Memory threads which looked like they’d be fun to use in a variety of fibre-arts and 3D quilts.  They also had fun kits to learn to crossstitch in half the time. I also liked their project books for tweens to help them learn the art of sewing.

The Knit Kit is a handy new accessory that is a great product for knitters on the go, of all levels.  In a cute little case it includes a stitch counter, measuring tape, thread cutter, scissors, darning needle and more.   They also have a new Quilt Kit for quilters that includes a seam ripper, measuring tape, pins, sewing needles, bobbin, thimble and scissors.  Great price @ $22-25, making these also good gift ideas.   Both portable kits are  also TSA approved and are reasonably priced.

Offray
Offray always has beautiful ribbons and had many new ones introduced at the show.  Of course, I really enjoyed seeing Cat In The Hat  showing off his favorite ribbons.

Embroidery Items
Quick Stitch Products, from Neil Enterprises, Inc. has a beautiful collection of embroidery papers and gifty blanks that any machine embroidery person could have fun making beautiful items for their home and gifts with.  All reasonably priced.  I also think their papers and blanks would be wonderful products for any store that has machine embroidery customers, but anyone can also order directly from their online store too.  I am certainly looking forward to doing some ME products with their products and blanks.

Knitting items
The Art of Knitting had a variety of kits and videos to help teach people to knit. I was very impressed with their collection for kids, including their dvd “The Art of Knitting for kids” that helps teach kids ages 5+ how to knit.  All reasonably priced and would also make great gifts for those looking for a crafty gift idea for kids.

Other Items
Frank A. Edmunds Co. had beautiful quilting frames and hoops that looked to be high quality and reasonably priced.  I liked their full size quilt frame fashioned after frames from the past.  Perfect for the single quilter or a group.  These frames can easily adjust from a baby quilt up to a full size or King quilt.  They also offer a large selection of round, oval and half boarder hoops.  These would be excellent hoops for any hand quilter.

Michaela Laurie (I Love Paper Quilting), from Australia, was vending her line of “Made by You” which are beautiful quilts made from paper.  This talented designer has created an interesting style of quilt art that I hope you will take time to view more on her site, and consider making on your own.  She also teaches and is willing to travel to teach or give presentations.  I anticipate seeing her work at Quilt Shows and in Quilt Museums in the very near future.  Absolutely beautiful!

Halcraft USA had several booths, some filled with beautiful glass beads perfect for jewelry and fibre artists.  I was drawn to their booth that was full of quilts, fibre-arts, and other sewn items.  While there I was able to learn of some new stablizers that have been manufactured by Halcraft and will hopefully be picked up soon by a large retailer (e.g. JoAnns, Hancocks, etc.  I really liked what I saw and plan to follow this product and hope to share more insights as it is introduced in the retail market.  Definitely a product that is going to be popular with applique quilters, machine embroiders, fibre-artists and more.

As I have enjoyed creating fabric thru the use of sewing fibers and using stablizers, I was very excited to see the new products by Halcroft also included stablizers to support such projects.  And it was fun to see that they also utilized AccuCut products to cut such sewn fabrics for applique’.  Again, I look forward to sharing more insights with you on their products, as I research more.

I hope you are able to check out these new products in your local sewing & quilting stores soon.  And if you don’t find them, let the respective owner (or buyer) know that you are interested.

You may also want to attend the CHA Craft Super Show, as I think you’ll have a lot of fun checking out new products and participating in a variety of make-n-takes too.  It will be held July 21-24, 2011 in
Rosemont (Chicago), Il

http://www.jfashow.com/
http://www.craftsupershow.com/

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