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Old 02-18-2011, 10:52 AM   #1  
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Default Why not have designated skill levels for swap participants?

In the past, I have participated in card swaps. I no longer do so because of the unreliability factor- the cards I receive represent a variety of card-making skill levels. I experience frustration when I receive cards that are well below the standards of my own.

Now, I know, here on this website, we have papercrafters of all skill and experience levels. So, why not, then, set up the swaps in a way that people of 'like' skill and experience swap with one another?

Designated levels like, 'beginner', 'intermediate' and 'advanced' could be assigned to the various swaps. Along with this, either pictures of cards and/or explanations of just what it means to be in a certain level, would be supplied.

What do you all think of this idea?
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:09 AM   #2  
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This topic has been brought up many times in the time I've been a member here. While I don't participate in swaps on this board just because of the pain of dealing with postage to and from another country, I do understand, to a point, your frustration. However, who would assess the other swappers skill levels? I think it would be opening a big can of worms. Someone might feel that their skill level is advanced, but you may feel that they are at the beginner level. Its very subjective and I personally think this type of system would end up insulting and hurting a lot of people feelings. Its all meant to be fun and being judged like that wouldn't be fun at all in my opinion.
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:15 AM   #3  
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LOL, I agree with CatWoman. Would we have to judge ourselves? I can't even imagine that because some of the cards I made even last year and thought were wonderful aren't as good as the ones I make now and definitely not as good as cards some of the other ladies here make. So I can't imagine how you could do that without majorly hurting feelings. I think stating how many embellishments, layers, etc. is enough without saying, gee you're just not up to snuff. I would be crying for sure! LOL!
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:30 AM   #4  
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I agree too... I certainly wouldn't want to judge anyone's work.

Many people have created swap groups that swap among themselves.
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:33 AM   #5  
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People join swaps for lots of reasons-- not always to get a stash of cards. I sometimes join to learn a new technique. Or because I want to get a cute stamp from somewhere just because it's cute but I really need a reason to use it.

Quite frankly, if you wanted to be sure cards always met your specifications, you'd make them all yourself. Instead of mass producing 6 for the swap, just make 6 different cards. Then you'll never be disappointed. If you want to swap to see what others make, you have to accept that the return package is like a grab bag: might be full of treasures, might be full of junk, but that's what you have to expect going in.

I decided a long time ago that the only criteria I would use to "judge" other things that came back to me in a swap was whether they followed the swap rules. (Some still don't-- card bases from patterned paper DO NOT WORK, people!) As long as the rules were followed, then I accept the card for what it is. And it makes me a lot happier to swap.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:11 PM   #6  
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card bases from patterned paper DO NOT WORK, people!) .
Very funny.

I like your attitude. I look at what I have done over the years and some of it is ghastly and some great.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:17 PM   #7  
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I do swap and I have been disappointed in the past, but I think that is just the risk you take. I now join fewer swaps and have found some hosts that consistently have quality swaps. Guess you just get familiar with the swappers. If I join with a new group I know I am taking a chance, but often I am very pleasantly surprised.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:26 PM   #8  
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Your points are all very valid. I realize that I tend to be a perfectionist when it comes to this hobby; as I tend to be overly critical my work, as well as the work of others.

The idea of swapping cards is such a fun and tempting one for me, that I have to decide, whether or not I would be willing to do it just for the fun of it, and to not set my expectations too high.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:30 PM   #9  
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Ellesart, I pm'd you.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:32 PM   #10  
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The ones that are not up to your "standards" could be all bundled up and DONATED to a shut in, hospital, or the soldiers overseas..they appreciate any skill level no matter whether is a "beginner" or "advanced" artist~ just my 2cents
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:39 PM   #11  
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Your points are all very valid. I realize that I tend to be a perfectionist when it comes to this hobby; as I tend to be overly critical my work, as well as the work of others.

The idea of swapping cards is such a fun and tempting one for me, that I have to decide, whether or not I would be willing to do it just for the fun of it, and to not set my expectations too high.
Even some of the cards that aren't what one could say at an advanced crafting level, there are times that beginners have really good ideas. Its just the execution may not be right. I have been in swaps where I received cards I personally didn't like, but the technique used was ingenious. So, while the card was something I personally wouldn't use, I have used the technique on several cards since. I prefer to look at swaps as an opportunity to learn from the other swappers. Even beginners have something to teach us because they often look at things differently and often can be more creative.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:40 PM   #12  
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I just had to smile at this thread. It seems to me people on this board are uber modest, and the beginner's group would probably have the best cards!
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:47 PM   #13  
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WOW. what an interesting question. I can't decide if I'm offended by quirky comment "I experience frustration when I receive cards that are well below the standards of my own." or not.

I have been scrapbooking for many years. I'm new to card making. For me it's a totally different thought process that goes into making a card. so I would say I am, as quirky puts it I'm a "begginer". I am new to this site and I've jumped in with both feet. I've joined swaps, lots of them now, I even join BRAK. I would hope that any card I'd submit in a swap would be one that someone would not be "embrassed by". but maybe my work is crap and us "begginers" should not be allowed to join and learn from the cards we get. So far everyone i've met on this site has been wonderful and very welcoming!

I would hope that as a beginner if I used the wrong card stock or did something that didn't meet the rules, someone would be so kind as to say, hey we really like our card stock a bit thicker or opps you forgot a layer, or we don't consider glitter an emblishment on this swap. There are so many "rules" when you join a swap it can be very intimidating for a "begginner".

I don't know. I think if you are going to be that critical of someone elses card. Don't join the swap. You have to know going in there are different skill levels. Heck some of the "ADVANCED" cards i've seen i think are just plain ugly. and not everyone has the means to have every product for every technique or can afford copic markers, etc....

I say just be happy with meeting new friends, sharing a bit of your life with them and be greatful for whatever cards you get back. If you don't like them then donate them to a worthy cause. It's not like you have to put YOUR name on the back of the card.

just my 2 cents-as a begginer!
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Old 02-18-2011, 02:34 PM   #14  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by tryingtofindtimeView Post
WOW. what an interesting question. I can't decide if I'm offended by quirky comment "I experience frustration when I receive cards that are well below the standards of my own." or not.

I have been scrapbooking for many years. I'm new to card making. For me it's a totally different thought process that goes into making a card. so I would say I am, as quirky puts it I'm a "begginer". I am new to this site and I've jumped in with both feet. I've joined swaps, lots of them now, I even join BRAK. I would hope that any card I'd submit in a swap would be one that someone would not be "embrassed by". but maybe my work is crap and us "begginers" should not be allowed to join and learn from the cards we get. So far everyone i've met on this site has been wonderful and very welcoming!

I would hope that as a beginner if I used the wrong card stock or did something that didn't meet the rules, someone would be so kind as to say, hey we really like our card stock a bit thicker or opps you forgot a layer, or we don't consider glitter an emblishment on this swap. There are so many "rules" when you join a swap it can be very intimidating for a "begginner".

I don't know. I think if you are going to be that critical of someone elses card. Don't join the swap. You have to know going in there are different skill levels. Heck some of the "ADVANCED" cards i've seen i think are just plain ugly. and not everyone has the means to have every product for every technique or can afford copic markers, etc....

I say just be happy with meeting new friends, sharing a bit of your life with them and be greatful for whatever cards you get back. If you don't like them then donate them to a worthy cause. It's not like you have to put YOUR name on the back of the card.

just my 2 cents-as a begginer!
I don't think anyone meant to offend. Personally, I avoid swaps and one of the reasons is that I think my own stuff is inferior to many here, and I would hate to disappoint anyone. I've been a beginner for a long time, LOL.

I agree with those who had the "it is what it is" approach, though. Even though I'd hate offend someone myself, I think that judging unfavorably b/c of a different perspective would be useless.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:22 PM   #15  
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I used to swap quite often but stopped completely for a variety of reasons. First, I'm a long time crafter, my work was always clean and neat, used supplies as determined by list, but probably was not up to some others standards. I received cards that were both better than mine and some that were not so good. What I did receive was so many ideas and ways to use things that I had never thought of. The cards that I would never send, I could often remove an embellishment and use or just donate the card. Card making is so subjective, I would not feel right about judging and refusing someone to swap. If it would not be fun to receive a swap, just make your own cards and browse the gallery here for different ideas. Swaps can be expensive and time consuming so do it only if it's fun for you.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:35 PM   #16  
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Sorry, but I think this kind of thinking is pretty snobby. Don't forget where everyone started.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:37 PM   #17  
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For me, I don't have any friends that stamp, nor is there a "stamping club" around me. I love to see what other people create and love to talk to other stampers, so the next best thing is to come to this site and look/read. Joining a swap to me is just a great way to "connect" with people out there and have a little fun. Its true, there are all skill levels involved - sometimes I learn from what I receive and sometimes I just hope that maybe some of my work provided insight to a new technique or idea to one of my recipients. One thought I had that may better serve you, is if rather than swaps, you participate in a shoebox event. That way, the participants just come up with the design, supplies, but you use your "skill level" to complete the card. Just a thought!
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Old 02-18-2011, 05:17 PM   #18  
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Exactly Cainp! I been stamping for over 15yrs but I dont consider myself "Advanced" as we NEVER all know it all or have done it all.. ya can learn from everyone..some of my own I like better than others once I am finished with it.. but I personally put my heart into each one so therefore a Piece of me goes with that card.. I too have not got a "stampclub" or friends close by that stamp.. hell some dont even have a clue on what that is.. thinking I collecting postage stamps~ LOL.. but I enjoy each card because some one put their heart into it!
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Old 02-18-2011, 07:38 PM   #19  
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Only been stamping for a year. At first, I wanted to join in some swaps, then had the awful realization that my cards would not be "good enough." I am not a very crafty/artsy person, and I still have cards that have embossing smudges, colors not coordinated, and crooked stamping, etc., but I sure have fun making them. It is therapy for me. I donate all the cards I make to the different nursing homes in my city. So, even though I would love to receive handmade cards in the mail (something about that just lifts my spirits), I don't join swaps because I realize a lot of people would feel they didn't get what they put into the swap.
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Old 02-18-2011, 07:59 PM   #20  
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If you're thinking of joining a swap, check out the galleries of the swap hostess and the other swap participants. Then you can decide whether you like their styles and whether you would enjoy receiving cards from them.

I've done a number of swaps here on SCS as well as with a local group, and while some of the cards I receive aren't necessarily my taste, I always find a use for them. After all, the person who made the card thought it was gorgeous, so probably the person I send it too will also think so even if it wasn't my favorite.

SWAP ON!!!
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Old 02-18-2011, 07:59 PM   #21  
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Sorry, but I think this kind of thinking is pretty snobby. Don't forget where everyone started.
I don't think it's snobby at all.. I wouldn't want to get a card from a novice stamper if I participated in a swap. I am a stickler for quality and would not let "less-than" leave my house and I would expect the same in return.

I've swapped before-with mixed results- and will not swap again... One time it was an invite-only swap and I got amazing cards in return but what do you do with some else's cards?? I have 100s of my own sitting around here!
I really just hate making 10 of the same card. My ADHD can't handle it.
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Old 02-18-2011, 08:22 PM   #22  
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I don't think anyone meant to offend. Personally, I avoid swaps and one of the reasons is that I think my own stuff is inferior to many here, and I would hate to disappoint anyone. I've been a beginner for a long time, LOL.

I agree with those who had the "it is what it is" approach, though. Even though I'd hate offend someone myself, I think that judging unfavorably b/c of a different perspective would be useless.

Binx- I looked at your gallery. and your cards were just as good if not better than some of the cards i rec'd in a swap. I would encourage you to find a swap and join one. We all have different taste in cards, so not everyone is going to like every card you get. you have to have a open mind.

if you don't like make 6 of the same card, then swapping may not be for you. If you are so picky and can't image what you do with someone elses card, then maybe swapping not for you. I think everyone should ask themself why do you want to join this swap. and if you can't answer that with reasonable expectations then maybe swapings not for you.

so far i've gotten very postive results from everything i've made. It has encourage me to do better and work hard with what I'm making. I think my skill level has gotten better since I've join SCS and swaps.

swapping is one of those things. you either love it or it's just not for you!
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Old 02-18-2011, 10:07 PM   #23  
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I love swapping. It is about learning and teaching, as well as getting new ideas and meeting new people. If you can't learn from the swaps you get, maybe you can teach other participants a thing or two. And meet people that might end up being your new best friend. All is good.
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:53 PM   #24  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Memphis1956View Post
Only been stamping for a year. At first, I wanted to join in some swaps, then had the awful realization that my cards would not be "good enough." I am not a very crafty/artsy person, and I still have cards that have embossing smudges, colors not coordinated, and crooked stamping, etc., but I sure have fun making them. It is therapy for me. I donate all the cards I make to the different nursing homes in my city. So, even though I would love to receive handmade cards in the mail (something about that just lifts my spirits), I don't join swaps because I realize a lot of people would feel they didn't get what they put into the swap.
I'm right with you, I haven't been doing this long and barely have any supplies compared to what I read about here and see in the gallery, and I have to get most of it by mail and shipping to Alaska just makes it cost prohibitive many times.

It would be cool to get to see in real life these amazing creations, but My stuff just isn't on that level, so I don't do swaps.
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Old 02-19-2011, 06:25 AM   #25  
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Wow, I read the replies and I can see why some would think it's "snobby", but here's my 2 cents. I occasionally do swaps with CTMH consultants, but I haven't ventured out anywhere else (in fact I only have 1 card in my SCS gallery). I don't have a problem with a novice in a swap. However, I do have a problem with sloppy work. Some cards I have received have had blurred images, uneven or rough cuts, I've even received a card that used photo copy paper. I'm sorry, but when I take the time to design a card and put alot of time and effort into it, I find it offensive when someone thinks it's appropriate to slap something together and send it in (especially blurred images, I stamp and restamp until they are perfect). I think perhaps that might be where some swappers are frustrated. For those who are nervous about swapping, I think as long as your cleanest, neatest work is sent in, you should be fine in a swap.
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:33 AM   #26  
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I haven't done a swap in a year or so on here, but have done quite a few over the last 10 years. Normally I get lovely cards that add variety to my stash. Once in while, I get something that isn't what I'd ever send - those go to my recycle box or I take whatever I can off and use it on something else. One thing I find helpful is having basic requirement for a swap. Like - must have at least 2 layers, one matted, a colored image, at least 1 embellishment.

That way, I don't spend lots of time making some majorly involved project to get something that someone did a sloppy sentiment stamp and stuck a brad on.
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:41 AM   #27  
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Memphis1956View Post
Only been stamping for a year. At first, I wanted to join in some swaps, then had the awful realization that my cards would not be "good enough." I am not a very crafty/artsy person, and I still have cards that have embossing smudges, colors not coordinated, and crooked stamping, etc., but I sure have fun making them. It is therapy for me. I donate all the cards I make to the different nursing homes in my city. So, even though I would love to receive handmade cards in the mail (something about that just lifts my spirits), I don't join swaps because I realize a lot of people would feel they didn't get what they put into the swap.
This is exactly my point why it would be beneficial to have designated skill levels. People who are beginners and feel timid about entering a swap, would (I think), feel more comfortable entering one that was specifically set up for them, don't you think?

In regard to those who think I am being 'snobby' in my desire to receive cards of good quality, and where equal effort has been put in, I don't agree. I am not being snobby at all. When I started stamping, my cards were very amateurish and although I was proud of my creations, I instinctively knew that they were the work of a beginner. At that time, I would have welcomed participating in a beginner's swap.

Over the years, I've gotten a lot better. My skill level is probably in the intermediate range. When I make a card, it is with great effort and care. Who would not be a little disappointed when the cards you receive back are less than adequate because they are sloppy or amateurish? Not to say that this is the case, all the time. Many times I have received lovely cards in a swap. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings, I am just being honest which, I know, is not 'PC', in the day and age.

I love SCS and have learned so much here. My suggestion was not intended to offend. I sincerely thought I'd had a good idea that might be beneficial for many of us stampers.
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Old 02-19-2011, 09:10 AM   #28  
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This is exactly my point why it would be beneficial to have designated skill levels. People who are beginners and feel timid about entering a swap, would (I think), feel more comfortable entering one that was specifically set up for them, don't you think?

In regard to those who think I am being 'snobby' in my desire to receive cards of good quality, and where equal effort has been put in, I don't agree. I am not being snobby at all. When I started stamping, my cards were very amateurish and although I was proud of my creations, I instinctively knew that they were the work of a beginner. At that time, I would have welcomed participating in a beginner's swap.

Over the years, I've gotten a lot better. My skill level is probably in the intermediate range. When I make a card, it is with great effort and care. Who would not be a little disappointed when the cards you receive back are less than adequate because they are sloppy or amateurish? Not to say that this is the case, all the time. Many times I have received lovely cards in a swap. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings, I am just being honest which, I know, is not 'PC', in the day and age.

I love SCS and have learned so much here. My suggestion was not intended to offend. I sincerely thought I'd had a good idea that might be beneficial for many of us stampers.
I totally agree with you and didn't take your comment as snobby at all. I don't swap a lot anymore because I too, got tired of getting stuff that wasn't up to par...and not creative wise but I always got at least one card back that didn't follow the rules (NOT hard to do...count the layers, use the minimum number of embellies, cut and adhere straight, you get the idea...even a beginner can do that) and that frustrated me to NO END because I put my blood, sweat and tears into my swaps. I do a lot of casing but always design my own for swaps and that's SOOOOO hard for me and I spend a TON of time on it...and it sucks to get something back that you can clearly tell the person did not take the time to do it right. It's just not hard to follow the rules, plain and simple. And should you have a question about them, you can always ask the hostess, ya know. Not to mention the cost of the postage and then to be disappointed when someone didn't follow the rules. I've also had swap cards with exposed adhesive and blurry images...even the newest stamper can make a "neat" card.

There are always cards I get that aren't my style but even though they may not be, I still like to get them and see other stuff I wouldn't do normally.

I do think a lot of beginners do feel intimidated and don't EVEN go look at the first few cards in my gallery, lol! I think a "beginner" swap or newbie swap might not be a terrible idea for those who are nervous about doing it. Although, I think anyone should be able to join Or maybe the newbies could find a clean and simple swap to start in. That should be less intimidating and have less "rules". I don't really think the whole classification thing would work though just because who judges it and it's so subjective, kwim?
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Old 02-19-2011, 09:46 AM   #29  
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I'm seeing two separate ideas emerge here. Some people are disappointed with sloppy cards that didn't follow the swap rules, and others (a minority) seem truly disappointed when receiving cards from "novice" stampers who are still developing their skills.

I've never swapped, so forgive me for my ignorance. But isn't there a hostess who collects and distributes cards? If someone sends in a card that is clearly not up to the swap rules, why is the hostess sending them out to others in the swap? Shouldn't that be part of the job - to enforce the basic rules of the swap?
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Old 02-19-2011, 10:28 AM   #30  
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I have not read the other replies so maybe this is a re-run answer.

Swapping is a great way to get great ideas from others but I have found over the years that there is a much more important concept (in my opinion) to swapping. I like to look at it as a skill building exercise for everyone involved. I might inspire and help some one grow in their stamping by swapping with them and in turn someone else may help me grow my skills and abilities when they swap with me.

I once was a beginning stamper and am very thankful that the "better stampers" didnt snob me and traded/swapped with me as I learned so much from each of them. Thank you to everyone who has helped make me better and graciously accepted a swap that was not as good as theirs.

People stamp for many reasons..some it is social, some it is for business, some it is for fun, some for many other reasons. A swap tends to consist of all of these folks who do this for different reasons...

I guess you could always list or host a swap and designate it in the title "high skill level only" if your focus is just on the quality of the swap you will receive in return or the skill level.
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Old 02-19-2011, 11:19 AM   #31  
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I can see the validity of the points raised (I rarely swap - the reasons vary and include, time, postage, and what to do with what I receive).

If the image is smeared or stamped/adhered crookedly (without that being part of the design) or the card doesn't have the required number of layers and embellishments, the hostess (imo) should return those cards back to the sender. As a participant I'd rather get one of mine back than get a card that did not meet the swap requirements. I would not expect the hostess to make additional cards.

That said, I think one needs to carefully read the requirements and definitions set forth in the swap. For example, Stampin'Up! and Gina K. cardstock are often mentioned as examples of quality cardstock. If you prefer a very heavy cardbase, you may not like those made with SU (or even those made with Gina K's layering weight) yet the swap requirements would be met.

I think frustration also happens with the definition of embellishments. Is glitter an embellishment? What about punched or diecut shapes? If it isn't very, very clear, ask the hostess.

Cardmaking is supposed to be fun and I think the stamping community, especially Splitcoast, is friendly and helpful so even if you end up with a swap you are frustrated with, you probably helped someone learn something about quality cs and embellsihments. Hopefully they also taught you something about cardmaking too (maybe a fun new color combo or an interesting way to attach an embellishment or a fun image you didn't know about).

Finally, someone suggested going to shoebox swaps and I agree that they are fun ways to meet friends. There are several in NY (way north of you but, imo, worth the trip if possible. Send me a PM and I'll find the links but they are listed in the Get-it-Together Forum here on SCS). Sometimes a local store will organize a swap (I'm not sure there are any in Westchester but there I've heard good things about The Creative Corner in Glen Spey in Sullivan County: The Creative Corner, Wurtsboro, New York, specializing in Rubber Stamps from Hero, Memory Box, Outlines || Specialty Inks, Papers from Bazzill || Copic Markers || Marvy Punches I have not been there yet - used to live closer but never made the trip. I also don't know if they do card swaps but you could always ask!

Otherwise, the only way to have some control over what you receive is to host your own swap and send back the cards that don't follow the rules.

I think the question was interesting and definitely food for thought.

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Old 02-19-2011, 12:00 PM   #32  
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I'm seeing two separate ideas emerge here. Some people are disappointed with sloppy cards that didn't follow the swap rules, and others (a minority) seem truly disappointed when receiving cards from "novice" stampers who are still developing their skills.

I've never swapped, so forgive me for my ignorance. But isn't there a hostess who collects and distributes cards? If someone sends in a card that is clearly not up to the swap rules, why is the hostess sending them out to others in the swap? Shouldn't that be part of the job - to enforce the basic rules of the swap?
Still a problem because then you don't get back the number of cards you should. I'm not making a certain number just to end up getting shorted because someone didn't follow the rules, which again, is not a hard thing to do
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Old 02-19-2011, 01:01 PM   #33  
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Still a problem because then you don't get back the number of cards you should. I'm not making a certain number just to end up getting shorted because someone didn't follow the rules, which again, is not a hard thing to do
I still don't understand. If the hostess sees that a submission doesn't comply with the basics of the rules, can't the hostess gently remind the person about the rules and ask for cards that do comply? Why is that worse than sending out cards that aren't right to others who did comply?

I understand that if the hostess decides not to use cards that weren't right, she will be short. But, if I were hostessing, I'd first ask the person to fix what she did as nicely as I could. If that doesn't work, I'd rather give up some of "my cards" to make sure everyone gets a complete set of cards that follow the basic rules than send out cards that don't or short someone. Seems like every hostess asks for an extra card from every participant, so there should be plenty to make up for a flake.
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Old 02-19-2011, 01:09 PM   #34  
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I think if everyone involved in a swap would link their SCS gallery people would have a better indication of who they are working with before signing up.
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Old 02-19-2011, 01:11 PM   #35  
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I still don't understand. If the hostess sees that a submission doesn't comply with the basics of the rules, can't the hostess gently remind the person about the rules and ask for cards that do comply? Why is that worse than sending out cards that aren't right to others who did comply?

I understand that if the hostess decides not to use cards that weren't right, she will be short. But, if I were hostessing, I'd first ask the person to fix what she did as nicely as I could. If that doesn't work, I'd rather give up some of "my cards" to make sure everyone gets a complete set of cards that follow the basic rules than send out cards that don't or short someone. Seems like every hostess asks for an extra card from every participant, so there should be plenty to make up for a flake.
There isn't time to let her know, have her fix them and then send them to the members of the swap.....especially if they come in right at the deadline (which mine usually do...I don't usually get mine in early). And I don't think the hostess should have to "give up" any of her cards. It has to be a LOT of work to sort and ship and organize everything...people need to just follow the rules in the first place
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Old 02-19-2011, 01:16 PM   #36  
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There isn't time to let her know, have her fix them and then send them to the members of the swap.....especially if they come in right at the deadline (which mine usually do...I don't usually get mine in early). And I don't think the hostess should have to "give up" any of her cards. It has to be a LOT of work to sort and ship and organize everything...people need to just follow the rules in the first place
I think I understand, although personally I'd give up my cards before disappointing someone else. I would think that would be part of the responsibility of hostessing. And I would make a note not to let the offender into any of my future swaps.
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Old 02-19-2011, 03:35 PM   #37  
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This is exactly my point why it would be beneficial to have designated skill levels. People who are beginners and feel timid about entering a swap, would (I think), feel more comfortable entering one that was specifically set up for them, don't you think?

In regard to those who think I am being 'snobby' in my desire to receive cards of good quality, and where equal effort has been put in, I don't agree. I am not being snobby at all. When I started stamping, my cards were very amateurish and although I was proud of my creations, I instinctively knew that they were the work of a beginner. At that time, I would have welcomed participating in a beginner's swap.

Over the years, I've gotten a lot better. My skill level is probably in the intermediate range. When I make a card, it is with great effort and care. Who would not be a little disappointed when the cards you receive back are less than adequate because they are sloppy or amateurish? Not to say that this is the case, all the time. Many times I have received lovely cards in a swap. I am not trying to hurt anyone's feelings, I am just being honest which, I know, is not 'PC', in the day and age.

I love SCS and have learned so much here. My suggestion was not intended to offend. I sincerely thought I'd had a good idea that might be beneficial for many of us stampers.
I just want to point something out...

Being an amature doesn't mean that good and considerable effort isn't being put into a card. I put a lot of effort into my cards BUT I still haven't figured out how to get off every speck of embossing powder where it shouldn't be (I use a paint brush to try and brush off all the specks where it shouldnt be) or how to get glitter to really stick.

I have had pieces of paper which I couldn't get straight no matter how many times I cut and recut.

I put a lot of thought into what I make and a lot of time, probably more time and thought than experienced cardmakers because you already know how to do it.

That being said, I wouldn't send anyone a smudged stamping and hopefully would notice crooked papers and wouldn't send that.
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:47 PM   #38  
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Quite frankly, if you wanted to be sure cards always met your specifications, you'd make them all yourself. Instead of mass producing 6 for the swap, just make 6 different cards. Then you'll never be disappointed.
Not always true. I can make six cards and not like all six of my cards. I sometimes disappoint and frustrate myself. LOL
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Old 02-19-2011, 07:49 PM   #39  
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I would be very interested to see...if you were going to actually put categories/skill levels together...how would you label the categories...and then what descriptions would you place with each category to solve the problem and get the results you want? You would have to have a description of the expectations for each level so people know exactly where they fit in.

With that said...
I dont think there is anything holding anyone back from putting togethe a swap that includes all of the "rules" that are to be followed along with the consequences. If you end up with less cards because you have made it a rule that you will send back anything with smudges (or whatever it is) then send everyone back their extras...I am thinking they can just use their own "extra" cards to send out and make someone's day. Turn the negative into a positive. Putting specific expectations in the swap announcement and instructions, would seem to be a logical way to address some of the concerns (again...no ink smudges, uneven layers, unless it is part if the design, etc...). Seems so much easier than coming up with a whole system that has a bunch of new rules and guidelines.

I am really interested as to how the label and description would read for each of the categories or skill levels. I am by no means advocating for this whole concept as I think it will "stunt growth" of our fellow stampers. Just really curious as to how all this would look and if this is something just to discuss or if someone can actually find a good way to handle this whole concept.
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:07 PM   #40  
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I would be very interested to see...if you were going to actually put categories/skill levels together...how would you label the categories...and then what descriptions would you place with each category to solve the problem and get the results you want? You would have to have a description of the expectations for each level so people know exactly where they fit in.

With that said...
I dont think there is anything holding anyone back from putting togethe a swap that includes all of the "rules" that are to be followed along with the consequences. If you end up with less cards because you have made it a rule that you will send back anything with smudges (or whatever it is) then send everyone back their extras...I am thinking they can just use their own "extra" cards to send out and make someone's day. Turn the negative into a positive. Putting specific expectations in the swap announcement and instructions, would seem to be a logical way to address some of the concerns (again...no ink smudges, uneven layers, unless it is part if the design, etc...). Seems so much easier than coming up with a whole system that has a bunch of new rules and guidelines.

I am really interested as to how the label and description would read for each of the categories or skill levels. I am by no means advocating for this whole concept as I think it will "stunt growth" of our fellow stampers. Just really curious as to how all this would look and if this is something just to discuss or if someone can actually find a good way to handle this whole concept.
That IS being done, that's how you know what the "rules" are for that swap, each one is different. It's not something arbitrary. The requirements are always clearly stated in the swaps I've done and I've STILL gotten crappy cards....smudged, crooked stuff, not enough layers or embellishments....you get the idea.

I really don't get why people who make the "crappy" cards even sign up for swaps If you don't want to put the time in to make them up to par (requirement wise only here) then why join, kwim??? That's what I think when I get them. If I'm spending the money on supplies AND postage and all the time that goes into designing (tough for me) and then the actual assembly of the card I'm going to give it my all.....
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