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Old 01-30-2016, 08:28 PM   #1
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Default The "Less is More" Experiment - Epic Fail

I've been percolating an idea for quite some time now and decided to make an "official" experiment for myself. The plan: go through my extensive stash of everything and pull together a "travel kit" of stamps and papers and tools (embossing folders and dies, etc.) My guillotine paper cutter, ATG and markers are allowed, as are the colored pencils. I'm going to see how long it takes me to miss any of the other things to see how much I really need - or want! I keep thinking that I was more creative and productive when I had less, so I'm going to test that theory. Further bulletins as events warrant...

Edited to add: Yeah, I know - ONE WHOLE DAY and I'm conceding defeat! I was trying to go through stamps to whittle down the choices and here's what I discovered: I can narrow down sentiments quite easily - three or four fabulous "thank you"s, ditto on the "for you", etc.

Images? I've discovered that the reason I have SO MANY is because there is such a HUGE variety of reasons that I may need them! Do I make "get well" or cowboy cards on any kind of a regular basis? No, no I don't, but when the need is there, so is the appropriate stamp!

I will continue to purge stamps as they fall out of favor, but bringing it down to a "mobile" few is just not gonna happen... UNCLE!
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Old 01-30-2016, 08:30 PM   #2
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Great idea. Seems like the more you have to choose from the decision takes longer. I need to use actual stamps more and maybe die-cuts less.
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Old 01-30-2016, 09:32 PM   #3
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Ummmmm...I could never do the less thing. Too many things I need to use...lol

Melissa59 is interested in coming to stamp one of these days and would like to meet you too! This will be a few months down the road.

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Old 01-31-2016, 12:06 PM   #4
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This is a great idea! My less is probably about ribbon. Anyone who knows me will notice I never really use it on cards (well, maybe 1 out of a hundred). So, I definitely need to let go of my extensive stash of ribbon.....I really only use it for wrapping gifts at Christmas so I know I don't need as much. Just trying to figure out how, I have almost a whole wall of it on a pegboard in my craft room.
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Old 01-31-2016, 01:38 PM   #5
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I take a small travel kit with me over to my Barnes and Noble all the time.

I have a travel trimmer, travel score board, and the SU foamy stamp mat.

I bought a tin of chocolates at Christmas that turns out to be a great box to put my scissors, glue, some mini ink pads, a couple of blog, and random embellishments in. It's a big tin, like 8.5x11x1.5".

What I've found works really well is to make cards that are patterned paper heavy and just need a sentiment and some minor embellishing. The joy fold card is great-- I pick out a 6x6 pad of paper and some matching cardstock, and then I have a couple of sentiment stamps that really fill in the sentiment area. And then there are some designs I try to do that use scraps from doing the joy fold.

I also take a pack of baby wipes and some small treat bags (which I use as little trash bags).

It all goes in a 31 Gifts organizing utility tote.
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Old 01-31-2016, 02:25 PM   #6
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Sue, I'm there with you. I was more creative and made more cards when I had less. I have been trying to thin out my cardstock. There is just so much more than I can ever use in my lifetime. The same is with stamps, ribbon, embellishments and other items.

Maybe I should try the same and what I don't miss - help it find a new home.
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Old 01-31-2016, 02:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by girlgeek101 View Post
This is a great idea! My less is probably about ribbon. Anyone who knows me will notice I never really use it on cards (well, maybe 1 out of a hundred). So, I definitely need to let go of my extensive stash of ribbon.....I really only use it for wrapping gifts at Christmas so I know I don't need as much. Just trying to figure out how, I have almost a whole wall of it on a pegboard in my craft room.
When you figure it out, please let me know. I have a lot of ribbon and rarely use it anymore. But I don't want to just "get rid of it".
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Old 01-31-2016, 02:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
I've been percolating an idea for quite some time now and decided to make an "official" experiment for myself. The plan: go through my extensive stash of everything and pull together a "travel kit" of stamps and papers and tools (embossing folders and dies, etc.)
Interesting experiment. My guess is that you will be get a lot done, until you tire of the stamps in your kit. Then you can swap them out for different stamps and do it all over again.

And yes, later this year when the time is right for all of us to get together to play with paper, you're travel kit will already be packed and ready to go!
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Old 01-31-2016, 03:42 PM   #9
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I'm doing this with my work wardrobe, and want to do it with my stamps as well.

I've found that having a lot less is making it much easier for me to get dressed in the morning, and I don't really miss the other 3/4 of my items. It's also helped me narrow down my color palette to my favorites, and weed out items that I wore but never really felt great about.

I hope that once I start on my stamp supplies, the results will be similar. I've already made the big decision to sell all of my SU markers, and have a big bin of stamps and other supplies to list here. There's still so much more for me to go through, however.
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Old 01-31-2016, 04:06 PM   #10
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I would not commit to this, you are very brave Sue

but, an stray thought about the ribbon use age Audrie would be to make more tags to go with your gift wrapping and poke multiple ribbons through the holes, say a sheer with a ric rack or what not... ??

I tend to use skinny flat stuff on cards and or mostly lace and save the wider pieces or printed design kinds for package wrapping.
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Old 01-31-2016, 06:23 PM   #11
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If you're just joining us, and didn't read anything up until now, please go back up and read the first post, which I've already edited to reflect the results of my "experiment"...
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Old 01-31-2016, 07:25 PM   #12
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well, if its just a travel kit and not a purging thing.. you could stamp off some images of cowboys and caught a bug images to color and that would be more mobile without actually losing the stamps?
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Old 01-31-2016, 09:30 PM   #13
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I have this sentiment to a door:
"Perceived failures are actually learning opportunities"
You have learned that you need your stamps!

Not only that, but I did not expect that you'd go forever and a day with nothing but your travel kit. I thought it would provide the stamps you'd focus on for the next few weeks so simplify your immediate choices, but only for a week or two. After that, I thought you'd exchange them for other stamps to work with.
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Old 01-31-2016, 10:09 PM   #14
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Yeah - I was trying to frame it like a "grab and go" thing, but I'm not going anywhere - I was just trying to narrow down the options and see if I could make do with less - a LOT less! I can, and will, narrow it down SOME, but not to the extreme that I had imagined when I first floated the idea... Melissa is right - educational, and that's always a good thing!
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Old 01-31-2016, 10:17 PM   #15
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Sue my grab and go kit would fill my car....
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Old 02-01-2016, 10:23 AM   #16
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For those of you who want your stuff to go to a good home, go find the pay it forward thread. It feels good to bless others with your unwanted items.
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Old 02-01-2016, 07:06 PM   #17
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I guess I'm not in danger of having too much because I do better with the amount of supplies I have now vs when I had less. Hahaha! Sounds good to me.
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Old 02-01-2016, 07:18 PM   #18
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For the first time I actually sold some old, retired stamp sets. I'm about to launch a remodel of the stamp room, and it makes me ready to part with some things finally. To get back to the original intent of Sue's thread, how do you create a travel kit for stamping. I get around that by packing a little book about Zentangle, a stack of white cs cut to 4x5 1/4, a couple of micron pens. I just create some Zentangle panels in my travels. I just can't manage to pare down a stamping project for a plane.
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Old 02-01-2016, 09:37 PM   #19
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I have been giving a lot away but you cant tell.
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Old 02-02-2016, 05:24 AM   #20
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Sue, we should change your name to "Bravegurl" LOL

Since my purge I'm more creative but I already know that I could never be a minimalist stamper. I like having a lot of options but I don't want a lot of duplication - does that make sense? I don't want 25 little daisy stamps, just a few of different sizes is perfect. Even after a massive purge I still have over 5K stamps just in case I need that image

Like most of us, I can put together a "travel kit" of basic tools like we would take to a class but picking out only one item to color - geesh do I go with copics, watercolors, pencils ... well that is just to hard. I'd be with you on the epic fail list. : )
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Old 02-02-2016, 05:44 AM   #21
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You experimented, Sue. Now you know something you didn't know before. That's not failure. !
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Old 02-02-2016, 06:42 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by girlgeek101 View Post
This is a great idea! My less is probably about ribbon. Anyone who knows me will notice I never really use it on cards (well, maybe 1 out of a hundred). So, I definitely need to let go of my extensive stash of ribbon.....I really only use it for wrapping gifts at Christmas so I know I don't need as much. Just trying to figure out how, I have almost a whole wall of it on a pegboard in my craft room.
Yup, for the past couple years, I've started using my ribbon on gifts too. I won't get rid of my ribbon, but I'm allowing myself to find alternate uses.
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Old 02-02-2016, 02:57 PM   #23
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Over the years, I bought a bunch of different ribbon. Narrow, wide, opaque, translucent.
I've learned that I like certain ribbons for scrapbooking, others for cards and then a whole lot of what I bought I don't like for either. Yesterday, my undesired ribbon went to a thrift store, along with my 4th of July decorations, some baby toys (that belonged to my 28-year-old) and a few other thing that I've been holding onto for far too long.

I still have a lot of stuff I need to let go of. Funny thing is, letting go of my unused craft items is the easiest. It's parting with those items that remind me of my parents and children that is hardest. I guess that's one more reason why I need to get back to work on my scrapbooks. I don't want to pass along junk to my children. I want them to have memories, and maybe a couple scrapbooks to bring those memories to life.
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Old 02-02-2016, 08:03 PM   #24
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I was just extolling the virtue of a full craft room to my husband this weekend. Our dear friends lost their dad last week. He had battled cancer and finally succumbed. In an effort to help my friend get ready to leave town for the service, I made her some thank you tags for gifts she picked up for caregivers. I had the perfect stamp, the most gorgeous and perfect two-sided paper and some lovely ribbon in the perfect color. I. Was.. Thrilled. And went right out and bought some more paper LOL! Don't want to be unable to do a good deed because I don't have paper, right??
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Old 02-03-2016, 05:46 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
I've been percolating an idea for quite some time now and decided to make an "official" experiment for myself. The plan: go through my extensive stash of everything and pull together a "travel kit" of stamps and papers and tools (embossing folders and dies, etc.) My guillotine paper cutter, ATG and markers are allowed, as are the colored pencils. I'm going to see how long it takes me to miss any of the other things to see how much I really need - or want! I keep thinking that I was more creative and productive when I had less, so I'm going to test that theory. Further bulletins as events warrant...

Edited to add: Yeah, I know - ONE WHOLE DAY and I'm conceding defeat! I was trying to go through stamps to whittle down the choices and here's what I discovered: I can narrow down sentiments quite easily - three or four fabulous "thank you"s, ditto on the "for you", etc

Images? I've discovered that the reason I have SO MANY is because there is such a HUGE variety of reasons that I may need them! Do I make "get well" or cowboy cards on any kind of a regular basis? No, no I don't, but when the need is there, so is the appropriate stamp!

I will continue to purge stamps as they fall out of favor, but bringing it down to a "mobile" few is just not gonna happen... UNCLE!
Sue..great idea in therory! BUT.........I tried something similar. Made a travel bag to go with me to and from my summer place up North and......spent more time and money inside the LSS for more supplies that I already had at my regular home. So instead of weeding out I doubled alot of stuff. Backfired on me. LOL
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Old 02-03-2016, 10:31 AM   #26
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Let's see a couple samples. You have me intrigued! Karen
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Old 02-03-2016, 12:41 PM   #27
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I am also working on whittling down. Hard to let go of some images that I just love but I am finding that if I go to play with some,I realize as much as I like them, I don't use them well. It is difficult but each time I go through, I find a few more..........that can go, Of course, then I go back through and pull one or two out again.........sigh......
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Old 02-04-2016, 07:14 AM   #28
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Sue, you just went through that massive purge with your move...I had the sense you already had seriously decreased the stash. You sounded like you were pretty mercenary about it. So I was surprised that you wanted to try this so soon.

Not so surprised therefore you needed a lot of it.

Good news is you love/need your stash! That's a great thing! And sounds like the purge did it's job well. You didnt leave yourself with a lot of fluff. (cute, fun, but you hardly every use it). Within a very short period of time you were tapping into it.
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Old 02-04-2016, 10:40 AM   #29
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Sue, you just went through that massive purge with your move...I had the sense you already had seriously decreased the stash. You sounded like you were pretty mercenary about it. So I was surprised that you wanted to try this so soon.

Not so surprised therefore you needed a lot of it.

Good news is you love/need your stash! That's a great thing! And sounds like the purge did it's job well. You didnt leave yourself with a lot of fluff. (cute, fun, but you hardly every use it). Within a very short period of time you were tapping into it.
Oh, you are so kind! Yes, I did a huge purge when I moved, but don't let me off the hook that easily! I've already eliminated THIRTY 4" x 6" sheets of stamps just YESTERDAY! Obviously had some more whittling to do, lol.

ALSO - as mentioned on another thread, my tastes have changed and I have a new-found Unity addiction (among others), so I had to make room... Another Kit of the Month will be here soon, and I haven't stamped anything with last month's except an index card. Interesting side note on that, though - there are enough stamps in the kit that I like to make it worth the money spent, but I'm already seeing a few that will be moving along sooner than later - either don't love 'em or have ZERO idea what on earth I'd do with them. (The owl in the new kit scares me...)
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Old 02-04-2016, 02:05 PM   #30
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Sue, I was a Unity KOTM subscriber for six months a couple of years ago. I have a number of stamps from that time that I still love and use, but in the end there were two reasons I stopped subscribing:

Too many sets were "love themed". At least that's what I experienced.

Some of the sentiments were darned peculiar. They were all very nicely styled, but what do you do with a stamp that says "Do You Still Like Me?"

I think you were on that "weird sentiments" thread recently. So you know I had mentioned this about Unity kits.

On the other hand, you get a TON of stamps for the money, and the stamps themselves are of very high quality, so if most of them are usable to you, you're coming out ahead.
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Old 02-04-2016, 02:12 PM   #31
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(The owl in the new kit scares me...)
Most owls are creepy!

But back to the topic of the thread - for the first time EVER, a few months ago I gave a friend a large bag full of stickers and other embellishments that I know I'll never use. But they were such a great deal when I bought them - not one of them got used.

I have no clue where to begin on purging - but I really need to do that - I have a huge craft room totally unorganized. Who wants to help me clean>?>?
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Old 02-04-2016, 03:17 PM   #32
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Wow...I had the impression you had cut yourself to the bone on that move purge! 30 sets to go in a day? Seems you might have some leeway there. Just dont cut your nose off to spite your face esp with anything you cant get anymore.

I like the new unity owl! Well-I like the one with the hearts under his wings-I got that one on the sale. Just arrived today! I want to use it for Val day.
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Old 02-04-2016, 07:04 PM   #33
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Wow...I had the impression you had cut yourself to the bone on that move purge! 30 sets to go in a day? Seems you might have some leeway there. Just dont cut your nose off to spite your face esp with anything you cant get anymore.

I like the new unity owl! Well-I like the one with the hearts under his wings-I got that one on the sale. Just arrived today! I want to use it for Val day.
It wasn't 30 sets, just 30 cards (I break up my sets), and some I just consolidated onto 1 card instead of spreading out over two, but it was still more stamps than I thought I had leftover that I probably wouldn't use. Some of the things that I can't get any more I'm fine with getting rid of, others not so much. Why do I keep Cool Cat, for example? I've only used her a few times EVER, but in the stash she stays...
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Old 02-05-2016, 10:06 AM   #34
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Kinda funny to read the dilemma we face...I did go through my stamps recently and upcycled them to a friend, but it wasn't easy. And then I go out and buy a few more because, well, I have more room now, right?
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Old 02-05-2016, 10:26 AM   #35
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And here I thought the subject would be"less is more card". Lol the only thing I grab and go is coffee. When I vacation in AZ the girls are surprised at how little I can fit into 3 small Iris cases plus my bug. Mind you I usually fund the perfect image or sentiment was left at home.........so I say our supplies are not perishable and they do not smell like fish the longer you have them. So hang on to them lol
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Old 02-05-2016, 03:50 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Turkey1969 View Post
I gave a friend a large bag full of stickers and other embellishments that I know I'll never use.
I still have some Mrs. Grossman's stickers from the mid 1990s!
I might use a few on a couple baby/little boy scrap pages for my sons. They are dated, but then my boys are pushing 30 and pushing 40 so their dated, too.

I'm slowly gathering up this kind of stuff and putting together a big craft kit for my son's girlfriend's daughter. She's 14, loves to craft and draw and color but doesn't have much (if anything) in the way of card making stuff. For my son's birthday, she made him a card from folded copy paper--just like I used to do for my parents when I was her age.

She inherited my collection of edging scissors a couple years ago. This time, her kit will include cardstock, a Scor-Pal, a couple ink pads, some stamps, acrylic block, stamp pad scrubber, stamp cleaner, corner rounder punches, stickers, glitter and whatever else I can find. I'm really excited that I'm able to do this for her.
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Old 02-05-2016, 04:03 PM   #37
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This fits my personal less is more philosophy:
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Old 02-05-2016, 05:48 PM   #38
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LMAO Cailinriley! So true!

Melissa that is so nice! You are growing a new stamper! Soon she'll be over to your house to play!
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:11 AM   #39
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Gregzgurl (Sue) How do you "purge" your larger items like wooden stamps? I don't have any friends that stamp so I can't hand them off that way. I've thought of trying to sell them on ebay but don't know the first thing about doing that and don't know how involved it would be. ( I really should learn since I've also a lot of collectibles to rid myself of, it's time to downsize.) Like everyone else, I've so many stamps, a lot of them unused and wonder what I was thinking when I first bought them. Over the years I've learned to consider my stamp purchases just a little more...yet still do a lot of impulse shopping. Any suggestions out there for passing on stamps?
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:35 AM   #40
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eBay can be useful, and it can also be a great big annoyance. Unless you have valuable stamps - like the old PSX botanicals, which are worth big money - you are best off grouping your wood stamps and selling them as "lots" of stamps there. And not doing it as an auction (big annoyance), but just slap a price on it.

It's not complicated to learn to use eBay.

But you might try the same thing on the Buy/Sell forum. Snap a pic of a "lot" of wood stamps and put a fair price on it and see if anyone bites. It's free to do that. eBay isn't free.
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