Today, I thought I would do something a little different – a review! A friend of mine is a Close To My Heart consultant and I’ve been drooling over a lot of the things in the current catalogue. We recently had a crafting get-together (which was so much fun!) and after seeing some of her goodies, I decided to order a few things. (I’m actually considering becoming either a CTMH or Stampin’ Up! consultant in the new year).
I selected a range of stamps, ink pads and also the Workshop on the Go: Kaleidoscope Cardmaking Kit because I really needed to make some birthday cards to have on hand. I thought the kit might be a way to get some cards made very quickly. I was also interested to see how easy the kit would be to use if you were a beginner cardmaker.
The kit comes with the following items:
* Stamp Set
* 2 x Patterned Papers
* 4 x Cardstock Sheets
* 15 x Card Bases and Envelopes
* 1 x Enamel Dots
* 1 x Shimmer Trim
* 1 x Instructional Brochure
(Please note: CTMH has their own names for each of the items, for example, the patterned papers are called B&T Duos. For ease of comparison, I have used more commonly known terms).
The catalogue makes mention of the coloured ink pads needed to complete the kit, as well as other basic supplies such as paper trimmer, adhesive, etc. I used CTMH inks as well as a memento ink. I really liked how the CTMH ink stamped. It reminds me of the Hero Arts as it stamped a bit splotchy at first before drying to a perfectly smooth colour. Just lovely! (The ink pad design is a bit hit and miss for my liking. It is a good size and stacks well, however, opening it can be really hard and I suspect people with conditions such as arthritis may struggle to get the ink pad open!)
My first opinion of the kit was that I really like the stamp set. I don’t have a lot of solid stamp images in my collection so this immediately fills a gap. I was also really happy with the colour palette. The colours are very pretty. The instructional brochure seems to have just the right amount of information without being overwhelming. It contains sketches of the three card designs, a cutting diagram for each of the papers and cardstock as well as large colour pictures so you could really see how it all went together. I couldn’t wait to begin!
To get started, I turned to the cutting diagram and cut all of the papers and cardstock as instructed. Once that was done, I picked out one of the designs and started stamping and assembling. It was at this stage I ran into difficulties. It seems I had made a mistake with one of the dimensions! Uh oh! Fortunately, it was only slightly out for one size and didn’t have too much of an impact on the finished piece. The next issue I had was stamping straight! Even though the stamps are clear I did have difficulties lining up the stamps for card one. My difficulties were compounded when I accidentally dropped the ink pad onto my stamped piece. *sigh* I wasn’t a happy stamper at this point especially when I realised the card kit contained only one sheet of the white cardstock. Fortunately, I did have another in my stash and was able to cut new panels and re-stamp.
In the end, the stamping and assembly process was fast and fun too and now I have 15 birthday cards at the ready.
Here are the three cards I made:
So now that I have finished making the kit, I can honestly say I enjoyed the process of stamping and putting the cards together. I stayed true to the designs in the brochure although it would be really easy to mix it up – use different coloured inks or swap the paper over (as it is double sided). I liked the actual card designs as they are different from my usual style. I think a beginner stamper/cardmaker would be able to assemble the cards relatively easily although I suspect they might run into the same issues I had with stamping straight for card one. Aside from the ink pads and basic supplies such as adhesive, etc, the kit does contain everything you need to get started. If you follow the cutting guide there is actually a little bit of leftover patterned paper and coloured cardstock, as well as extra shimmer trim and enamel dots. You could easily make another couple of cards with the leftovers. My one criticism is that I think another sheet of white cardstock should have been included just in case of issues with stamping or cutting. Aside from this, it is a fun kit to work with and I am looking forward to using the stamp set with other projects in the future. The cutting guide also makes you aware of just how many different cards you can make out of a handful of papers.
I hope this was of interest to you and perhaps offered some insight into whether this product might be of use to you or to someone you know.