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Old 06-30-2009, 12:23 PM   #1
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Default Some advice

Hi!

I'm looking for some really solid advice here. I am VERY new to card making and scrapping. While I've accumulated quite a few supplies (including a Cricut) I find I'm really at a loss to the basics. Is there somewhere I could go online to find good information on the basics? From the size of cards to well anything. I know local stores have classes on the basics but seems they are never a time that works in my schedule. I've tried the SU stuff and love it but can't seem to find someone who follows through. I thought I had a catalog coming but alas that doesn't seem to be working out either. My frustration grows each day with wanting to do this and being overwhelmed.

Any advice?
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Old 06-30-2009, 12:37 PM   #2
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The "normal" card size (I've found, anyway) is a half sheet of 8 1/2 x 11 cardstock, folded in half. This gives you a card measuring 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 (also called A2...very easy to find envelopes this size)

The "basics" you need for stamping cards are just stamps, ink and paper! You can start with more solid stamps so you don't have to color them in, just stamp with different colored inks. Add a couple of different colors of cardstock as mats, maybe a little patterned paper, and you're done!

As you feel comfortable making basic cards you can add ribbon, brads, rhinestones and other embellishments. Punches are also a favorite of mine because they are super quick but can add just the right touch.

You can search the gallery for CAS (which stands for Clean And Simple) to get some ideas for cards with minimal layers and embellishments, but still beautiful.
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:27 PM   #3
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My only advice would be, don't get a ton of stuff! Start slowly, and try to decide if things are really your style or not. You don't have to get a gazillion different things all at once to have fun. Good quality cardstock, inks, and matching accessories (if you like matchy, matchy) are a great way to start. I'm sure there are a lot of demos out there (even on here) who would be happy to help you out if you are wanting Stampin' Up stuff. There are also The Angel Company demos, CTMH demos, the list goes on and on. For online shopping, Papertrey Ink (http://www.papertreyink.com/) offers great cs, inks, matching accessories. Have fun, and enjoy yourself!
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:42 PM   #4
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I second Rebecca--don't get a ton of stuff!!! Spend a lot of time in the gallery looking at cards and favoriting the ones you really love. Then go back and look at your favs--pretty soon, you'll start to see a trend in the cards that appeal to you. This can help you determine your "style."

Also--practice, practice, practice! It takes some time to learn how to get a good image from your stamps, how to line up layers, the proper way to fold your cardstock--you name it. Just keep trying and don't get discouraged if your first attempts don't turn out as well as you might have liked. It's only paper and ink!

Do you have any stamping friends? I find the best way to learn new techniques (or even the basics) is to get together with crafty friends and just play. It's amazing just how creative you can get with a bunch of your girlfriends and a big ole pitcher of sangria!

Don't forget about the amazing online resources available, too. You Tube has videos for EVERYTHING!!! So many blogs out there offer amazing tutorials, as well. And of course, you're in the right place here at SCS to learn anything you could possibly want.

Finally, the most important thing--have fun!!!!
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Old 06-30-2009, 01:46 PM   #5
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I find going to youtube and watch people make cards to be very helpful. You can learn a lot!!
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Old 06-30-2009, 02:43 PM   #6
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The first rule is there are no rules.

Secondly - great advice in this thread - to start A2 size cards are great. You can branch out from there.

Third -I agree with the looking at styles.

Fourth - I ask myself when I buy something how many different ways can I use it. I started off sampling a lot and I really wouldn't recommend that strategy I still have a lot of "unique" things I sampled to work my way through etc. What I mean is when I see a stamp set I need to think of several different uses for several different people/occasions to justify it. I have seen the cutest Russian Doll stamp set from Hero Arts and as much as I love it I can't really think of a good use for it so I haven't bought it.

Fifth - think about joining a swap but let the swap hostess know if you are waiting on the appropriate supplies - some swaps are limited to certain brands. I know I joined a monthly card swap with a fantastic group of ladies a few years ago now and the core of the group still chats at least weekly - we have become friends.

AND remember to have fun. Mistakes are just opportunities to get creative
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Old 06-30-2009, 03:51 PM   #7
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As far as a place to find info...you're there! Ask anything and we'll be happy to help you. You've gotten some great advice already...have fun!
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Old 06-30-2009, 04:36 PM   #8
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I thought I knew this site. Well guess what I didn't. I've always sen CAS but didn't know what it meant. I just looked at some of these cards. How awesome. Thanks for sharing this. This site is awesome and so are the wonderful ladies.
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Old 06-30-2009, 04:53 PM   #9
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I extend my greatest appreciation for each of you who have replied. You gave me a lot of good hints and things to try out. I admit I've not spent much time in the gallery because I see things that I think I'll never be able to do. But as I just reminded myself tonight at my Weight Watchers meeting....one year ago I started there and NEVER thought I'd be where I am now....125 pounds less! So it CAN be done.

Thanks for all your encouragement. This afternoon when I posted I admit I was feeling a bit down in the dumps. Thanks for showing me so many ways to to move in the right direction. (and no, I have no stamping friends....scrapping ones yes but they don't do it like they used to)
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Old 06-30-2009, 04:57 PM   #10
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I learned everything I know from going to monthly SU workshops every month for four years, looking at the gallery here, reading general stamping talk every day, watching u-tube demonstrations like K Werner and stamp tv....over time it just got easier but believe me, it took quite awhile!!
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Old 06-30-2009, 05:20 PM   #11
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Denise - CONGRATULATIONS on the weight loss. That is quite an accomplishment. Keep up the good work!

As for stamping ----- spend some time in the gallery here. There are tons of cards that may inspire you - what I did when I started was just try to copy cards I liked but using what I had - which was never quite what was in the original card. Sometimes it worked out better - sometimes not. Just have fun playing.
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Old 06-30-2009, 05:23 PM   #12
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Yeah, try not to buy everything! There is a lot of cool stuff, but you have to restrain yourself. To me the basics are a paper cutter, a pair of scissors, a package of white cardstock, a multicolored solid cardstock package, a few colors of ink (Black, brown, gold or silver or white, and your favorite color) some basic stamps (Happy birthday, congratulations, flower, thinking of you) that fit the occasions that YOU would send cards for. Always try to keep in mind what types of cards you will actually send and only purchase items that help you make those cards.
The suggestion to check out the clean and simple cards is a good one as is checking out the youtube cardmaking videos. The videos will usually show you how to cut and fold the basic card, (yes it is usually just a 8 1/2 by 11 inch sheet cut in half and folded.) and one way to decorate the card. (Remember you can play it a lot of times and try the techniques yourself. ) I also like the suggestion of looking at lots and lots of cards. A creative friend or two invited over to play with your new toys would be good too.

I'd also suggest that you make yourself a sketchbook with little drawings of cards that you like. Note what you liked about the cards you have seen (color combination, layout, striped paper, pretty flower, etc.) You might try to recreate a few of the ones you like. Most people on SCS will gladly answer your questions if you get stuck and can't figure something out. Don't be afraid to ask for help. Have FUN!
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Old 06-30-2009, 06:22 PM   #13
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Absolutely agree with the advice to not go overboard with supplies. It took me awhile to discover what I really loved and used the most ~ and I really didn't need to buy (and then sell) so much... give it time.

When I first started, I would look through my SU catalog and find something I liked... I would start to copy it but it ended up being a springboard and I changed things as I went along. That was a good experience.

Since you don't have your SU catalog yet, you could also pick up one of the many wonderful card magazines at the bookstore or supermarket. Something will catch your eye and you can substitute your own materials but copy the design.

Have fun, good luck and be sure to wander the galleries and threads in General Stamping and Tool & Product Talk... you'll gradually start to absorb it all!!

ENJOY!!
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Old 06-30-2009, 06:38 PM   #14
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You've gotten lots of good advice from everyone.

Here is a suggestion I didn't see. Try your public library for books about cardmaking. I just looked at our library website where I live, and they have lots and lots of books on the subject.

Also, you might pick up a couple of papercrafting magazines. There are lots of good ones. The gallery here is amazing, but sometimes I want to curl up in my chair with a magazine and a cup of coffee.
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Old 06-30-2009, 06:55 PM   #15
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Smile Please check stamptv!

Gina K. is great with very basic ideas and she shows you step by step how to do them.

As you watch, you can see how some of the tools are used for cardmaking.

Hope that helps.

Teresa

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Old 06-30-2009, 07:08 PM   #16
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Hi Denise! Where are you in PA? I'm in Pittsburgh, south.
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Old 06-30-2009, 07:21 PM   #17
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Thanks Cathy for the congrats

Thanks again everyone. Is there a certain magazine or two that you find yourself going to before any others? I have looked at them at J's but again it kind of overwhelms me.

Bethany, I live about 35 min east of Pittsburgh. Only moved 2 streets when I got married. LOL You're probably not all that far from me.
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Old 06-30-2009, 07:32 PM   #18
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Welcome to the addiction!

I think you've already tapped into the best resource out there! My advice is don't be shy about asking questions. We're here to learn from one another and share. Part of that is sharing our knowledge with others! I've always found the people here to be very helpful. Also talk with the people at scrapbooking stores in your area. (And the ladies wandering the aisles with their arms full of stuff!! ) I have found that asking for help at Michaels can be hit or miss, depending on who you talk to, which makes sense because it's not focused on paper crafting alone. Most of us loooooooove to talk about anything paper crafting, so just ask!

Hmmm... Oh, here are a couple of links you might want to check out. This one is for newbies and this one is a list of many of the acronyms that are used on this site. It can be overwhelming at first to read posts filled with LSS's, SU!'s, and CS and have no idea what people are talking about.

As for tools, definitely a paper trimmer, cardstock, maybe some stickers if you don't want to invest in a ton of stamps right away, some pretty paper (though I'd stay away from the ENORMOUS paper packs at Michaels... ha ha!! It's not as good a deal as you think it is, because you'll end up with piles of paper that will still be sitting on your shelf 10 years later. Trust a voice of experience here! ), and some adhesive. Don't bother with glue sticks because stuff just falls off when it dries. Glue dots or Zots for little things and a double sided tape runner like Tombow to do layers, etc.

Most of all, have fun!

Angela
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Old 06-30-2009, 07:35 PM   #19
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I agree with everything above. My two cents would be to go onto Stampinup web site and locate a new demonstrator. Most teach classes using stampin up stamps. I go to 3 different ladies because they all have a different style so I learn from all of them. It also enables me to go to a stamp class once a week.I also belong to a stampin group of 6 ladies and we get together once a month for a free for all. Great socialization, no cost, and we stamp, and share things and ideas. It's wonderful.
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Old 06-30-2009, 07:37 PM   #20
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All of the advice here is great!! I wish I had some of it when I started out!! (I'm the one who bought everything I even just *thought* I could use!!) The only thing I want to add is that the new SU catalog doesn't come out until tomorrow, so you may still have one coming to you! And if you don't, I can send you one when I get mine!
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Old 07-01-2009, 05:53 AM   #21
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Wow, what great advice you've gotten here! I wish I had all this advice when I started. Here is one practical thing that I thought of myself when I started -- On top of my plastic cutting board, with the grid on it, which I got at a paint supply store, which I use to protect my table, I put a bunch of large 8 1/2 x 11 envelopes that bank stuff or other paperwork sometimes comes in, you know? I open them up to be double size and they are my practice mats. I would stamp on them first, to see how much pressure a stamp would need or if I didn't like the color I was stamping. I used it as my scratch pad to write out dimensions of cardstock and layers. And as one side would get used up I'd flip it and then recycle it. It was an excellent way to get my hands used to holding stamps and how much pressure I'd need to get a good image, and how to actually do the stamping. Now that I've been doing this a few years I still can't stand to throw out those large envelopes when they come in the mail!

good luck. Whatever you make will be beautiful.
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Old 07-01-2009, 07:41 AM   #22
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Great advise is in this thread! I'll put my vote for you to do yourself a huge favor and persist in tracking down a demo or two (perhaps even from different companies). When you contact them find out if they have a schedule of events, you are looking for someone that holds at a minimum or 1 or 2 stamp camp type events each and every month. Then go! You will get a chance to see what type of stamps you like, the style of stamps and stamping you enjoy and just what type of equipment you like and use often. Most camps will cost between $5 - $15 each. Just a ball park depending on what they are doing. Yes some specialty camps will have bigger projects and will cost more. You will learn great basics along with some of the techniques that take cards up a notch. If you go to a camp or two and the people don't mesh with you find another group.

Enjoy your new hobby and feel free to ask questions here!
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Old 07-01-2009, 07:53 AM   #23
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I would suggest that a new person invest in a few card magazines. They show various examples of cards in all kinds of varieties of styles. The cards are not all produced by one manufacturer of stamps, paper, etc.

Going to an event sponsored by a particular manufacture of products will be very partial and not give an overall outlook of what kinds of products are available. Also you would be pressured into purchasing products from that line. After all, someone running an event in their home would naturally be pushing a specific line of products, not a variety from various companies.

A new person needs to see a variety of products and styles.

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Old 07-01-2009, 08:16 AM   #24
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Anyone have a favorite card magazine you subscribe to?
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Old 07-01-2009, 08:58 AM   #25
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First off, sorry for all the type o's! My computer went crazy before I could edit and correct. (I'm actually surprised it posted since the computer went crazy)

Someone mentioned that a demo would be partial to their products. I agree! But don't the card magazines have their own bias? Not bad just saying.

Be honest with the person you contact as to being new and still looking for your style of stamping products. If you are attending a "pay to play" type event the push for orders shouldn't be that much. They should offer the option to buy but you make the choice. Due to moves and such I have worked with 6 or 7 different demos. All but one wanted you to enjoy the hobby. Funny thing is the one that really pushed sales was the one I bought the least from! You are looking for the how to's of card making and all demos can help with that.
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Old 07-01-2009, 11:02 AM   #26
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Denise,

Congratulations on the weight loss. My two cents worth is look at the cards made on here. No card magazine comes close to being as beautiful as do the ones made here. I'm more of a Clean and Simple (CAS) person, but you can pick and choose what you like from here. If you see something you like and don't know how to do it, send the person a message and these ladies are the most wonderful friends you can ever have.
When I started I bought this and that and still didn't have enough to make a card. I bought stuff I've never opened. I didn't know the difference between a brad and an eyelet or that there was a difference between dry embossing and embossing.

I have learned more from this website and all the wonderful people that participate in it than I have from classes and/or books. Don't waste your $s on the books. You have everything here at your fingertips.
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:44 PM   #27
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You asked about favorite magazines - I think you should just thumb through whatever is available and see if you like the style - pretty much, I think the gallery here is a much better source of awesome cards - having said that, I used to like some of the magazines but not so much any more
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:51 PM   #28
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I have a flyer at home that I put together for my customers called stamping 101. If you'd like to PM me your email address, I'd be happy to send it to you.
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Old 07-01-2009, 04:24 PM   #29
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YOUTUBE!!! Everytime I need some creative inspiration, or some basic know how on the latest tools and products......I go to youtube, do a quick search and then settle in with a cup of tea and let the show begin. I now have several subscriptions to the regulars the post and everyday I have at least 3 or 4 new videos to watch.
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Old 07-01-2009, 04:55 PM   #30
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Another couple of ideas.... Is there a local craft store nearby that offers a card class? or that you can go visit and see what they offer. The local store near me offers classes... and for $5 (I think), they will let you come in and use their stamping areas and tools and the girls that work there are always willing to show you "how to". And they always have cards on display...

And some of the stamp suppliers/paper companies have FAQ's, tutorials, techniques, and galleries, that you can view from their websites. I have found that to helpful as well. Just click on the ads from this site and they take you right to the sites...

Depending on how you like to learn you may want to have someone there or learn by looking. Personally like to be able to chat with someone and ask questions.

Absolutely need a paper cutter, a good pair of scissors, and adhesive to start. I have tried all kinds of adhesives, and when I started used glue sticks... And that did not last long, but were a cheap option for when I first started.

If you contact demos from the different companies.. Do not feel pressured into buying EVERYTHING. My demo did not do that... My problem was my obsessive compulsion to have to have everything that I could possibly imagine that I may at some point need. I may need to move to accomodate all of my craft things..

view the galleries here in SCS.... if you see something you like, and the card recipe is not there...see if the original poster has a blog listed in their signature. They may have more details listed there

Happy Stamping .....
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:26 PM   #31
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Thanks to everyone for the wonderful advice. I have to tell you, last night I went to Pat Catan's and everything I picked up, I'd say to myself....now do you have a use for this and how many uses can you get from it. I really reigned myself in on buying.

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