the art of doing my own thing

Non-scrapbooking readers? This post is quite scrapbooky so you might want to sit this one out.

As of last month I no longer subscribe to any scrapbooking kit clubs. 

This may seem like no big deal except for the fact that I have been receiving a kit...at times multiple kits for the last 5 years.

When I first started subscribing, I felt a bit at odds with scrapbooking. The industry, the community...I just didn't fit and felt as though I was constantly being reminded every time I looked at a magazine or went to my LSS. I also noticed...even a few years prior, that scrapbooking sites were quickly growing an increasingly active online community.

I wanted in.

It felt fresh and modern. Many new shops were popping up run by independent designers like myself. Scrapbookers in general seemed more diverse and with the growth of social networking...many non scrapbookers seemed a lot more receptive to the idea of documenting their lives through pictures and words.

The first kit I got was from a company that seemed headed in a much more current direction. The product I received in my monthly box was from a mix of manufacturers. I found the variety inspiring as it included lots of bits and pieces I wouldn't normally choose myself.

After a while, the boxes began to accumulate. At a price point between 30-40 dollars it suddenly occurred to me how much money was stacked up in the corner of my office. Not only could I not use it fast enough...but only about half of it was stuff I really loved. I mean, they had to cater to more than just me, right?

But I still didn't want to quit. I couldn't. Truth be told...I felt ever so slightly addicted to that box of paper heaven. Plus, I loved the community...I wasn't much of a contributor, but their gallery was awesome, not to mention that they were increasingly turning to independent designers for products to include in their kits. Bananafishstudio included.

This was all wonderful...save for the fact that boxes continued to be stacked unopened in the corner collecting dust. 

A few weeks ago I finally called it quits for a few reasons.

I went though all the boxes and the stack I decided to keep was really only a fraction of everything I received. All the other items were fabulous...just not for me.  As both a stamp designer and stamp collector, I have become super picky about the stamps I choose to purchase. Stamps represent a significant part of the cost of a kit...no stamp meant more money I could spend on something else.

As I looked through all the papers, and washi and veneers...I thought, it would be so lovely if I had someone who would pick out exactly what I want just for me every month. Then I thought...you do dummy...YOU. You can pick out your own stuff when and if you need it.

In the beginning I felt I needed the kits to be creative, to feel part of a burgeoning community, to be productive...and now I don't. As a major manufacturer of scrapbooking product I still support the kit company albeit in a different way...their products are now a part of the kits I choose for myself...

Yup! that's right. I now choose my own kit every month...well at least since April:)  I know the recipe...5-10 patterned papers...no cardstock because I just don't need it. Alpha stickers., but only if I love them because I have a ton, a roll of washi is a must:) NO STAMPS...unless they are super cute, 6x6 pads for my cards and embellishments, always embellishments...stickers, wood veneer, labels...the items I love from collections that are just my style.

For the record, I'm not doing this to save money.  I just wanted to take the budget I set for myself and repurpose it so that I could be sure I was getting exactly what I wanted. 

Check out my April and May picks:



All papers except the stripes by Dear Lizzy for American Crafts Lucky Charm Collection
Stripes-Oh Snap by Echo Park
Chipboard stickers- Dear Lizzy
Enamel dots and Label Stickers My Mind's Eye
Stars & Such  Woodchips- Freckled Fawn
Grey Alphas- Basic Grey
Pink Chevron Washi- Bella Blvd.
6x6 Pad-Studio Calico



All papers except for the tiny yellow dots and pink cameras part of the Dear Lizzy Lucky Charm collection for American Crafts
Pink Camera-Amy Tangerine
Tiny Yellow Dots-Echo Park
6x6 Pad-Dear Lizzy
Sticker Booklet- Dear Lizzy
Smile Washi- KI
Cloud Woodchips- Freckled Fawn
Diced Denim Alphs- Jillibean Soup
Trendsetter Tape Stickers- Fancy Pants

Both kits cost approx 30 dollars each


apes said...

This is a great idea!

Nicole said...

How funny, I was just thinking this week about going this direction myself. I've been a Studio Calico scrapbook kit subscriber for a couple years now and I'm not making paper scrapbook pages...only Project Life and a few cards. So the products just keep piling up. I have recently signed up for the SC Project Life kit club, so I'm thinking about pulling the plug on the scrapbooking kit and using that money to buy other things I want on Two Peas. Thanks for the inspiring post. Off to think about it some more!

Unknown said...

YES,YES,YES! This is the way I am going too. My motto "Share the Stash". Too much of a good thing is a waste.

rhonda nickol said...

I too just recently stopped my subs, I need to use my stash. I am only buying the things I really want and know I will use.

Kelly said...

i have one more month before my six month commitment to a kit company is met. i have really been thinking about going this route as well because, like you said, i am only finding that i love a fraction of what comes with the monthly kits. i love the kits you put together (would so SO join your sub list ;)) and i know i could do the same for myself and support some smaller businesses along the way. great post france.

Trine Brandt-Lassen said...

This is completely me... Except for the fact I still haven't had the strenght to stop my subscription.

Anonymous said...

i LOVE what you pulled MUCH more than the kits i've received. i'm going to stop my subscription as well. there isn't many scrapbook stores where i am and i'm always ordering things that doesn't come out the color i see it on screen when i do mail order ... will you be doing this on a monthly basis? it would be awesome to follow what you choose because then i'll know everything matches! lol.

christy said...

Definitely a feeling shared by many. Love your picks, you obviously have a knack and a skill for this. Thanks for sharing!

Jossie Posie said...

Hi I fouind you on instagram and wanted to come by and visit your bog. I just read this post and I found it so intresting. I am new to the scrapbook world and am trying not to get caught up! I now find myself with two months sub of SC and I have not done anything. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!