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[personal profile] janewilliams20
My starter kit for my life as a Stampin' Up demonstrator has arrived. Time then, not to play with new toys and go SQUEEE!, but to test out the tools of my trade and do a fair, objective and coherent review.

I have punches, two sorts of stamps ("clear-mount" and "photo-polymer"), an envelope punch board, a silicone craft sheet (intended to be glue-resistant), a snowflake die that makes swivel cards, papers, ink pads, and pens. Those last three are all in the five new colours for this year.

First impressions of all of this are that my fellow demos are right in saying that Stampin' Up products are a cut above the norm.
The punches aren't just the normal "insert paper and press", they have locks that hold them closed when not in use.
The ink pads don't just have lids that you pull off (and that fall off), they have a sort of slide and seal mechanism. No clear lid to let you see what's inside, but a nice label on the top, in the ink colour, giving the name. What's more, if you want to store them on edge and see the names from the side, there's a peel-off label supplied that you can apply whereever you like - it'll fit on either of the ends.
The stamps, both sorts, come in a DVD-sized case, with labels giving the name, and pictures of what's in the set.

So far I've played with the envelope punch board. It has a chart (in inches and cm) listing the card sizes you might want to make an envelope for, and the size of paper each will require. Looking this up for the 6x6 card I had in mind, I realised why their "envelope paper" is 12x12 - 9.5x9.5 is a lot bigger than A4. The instructions are nice and simple, everything works easily, and you end up with a nice envelope with all corners rounded, and overlap for gluing that's just the right size for a tape dispenser.

While producing that bit of 9.5x9.5, I realised why my fellow demos had recommended the Stampin' Up Trimmer, rather than my fairly standard guillotine.  See that extending ruler? That's what I needed. Next order, I'll be getting one of them.



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