Tuesday, 5 September 2006

If I won the lottery, these 10 manufacturers would certainly benefit!

I love lists and I have them everywhere – on the fridge, on my desk at work, in my wallet, in my diary... basically, I don’t feel that I’m organized until I write a list! So when I saw a thread on UKS about doing a book of me filled with lists, I immediately pounced on the idea and will certainly be using it on my BOM.

One list, however, seemed fun but not quite suitable for what I want in my BOM; but it was too good an idea to pass up so I decided to include it here in my blog for all to see. So, ladies and gentlemen, here is my list of 10 favorite scrapbook manufacturers!

1. SEI
Not at all surprising if you’ve seen my gallery –it’s SEI-dominated. I really, really like their older, color blocked papers but I also quite like the newer things. When I started out in this hobby, the SEI Simple Sets were my lifesaver and, I believe, have in a way influenced my scrapping style with their simple lines and modern look.

2. Die Cuts With a View (DCWV)
Again, shouldn’t be surprising if you know me at all – I love this stuff. I discovered this brand relatively recently, after my SIL sent me one of the huge 12x12 paper packs from the USA and I was almost immediately hooked. The papers are so usable, excellent value for money and come in so many different sizes and designs that there is always something for me. I have also used other products from them: mainly the alphabet sticker packs, the vellum quotes, the cardstock packs (I absolutely love this cardstock: textured and white cored so what more could you ask for?) and so many collections that I think I may have it all!

3. Chatterbox
This is another one I’ve come to recently. I’d heard of the paper long before I bought any, but one look at the lovely textured sheets and I knew it was love. A very good friend then gave me a mountain of Chatterbox and the fling turned into something serious! I have since bought quite a few of the embellishments as I love the colors and are always suitable for more boyish pages – the journaling prompts are second to none, too.

4. Doodlebug
I didn’t realize that I liked this so much until I noticed that I had quite a few items from them in my stash! The bright, happy colors really suit my style and their embellishments are pretty cool too.

5. Me and My Big Ideas
I have so much affection for this brand: it’s my first love, really. When I started out scrapbooking so many years ago, MAMBI was out there with cute stuff that I just adored – and one of the few manufacturers of “word” embellishments, way back then. I must admit that some of the later products were not quite my style (I do love the MAMBI kids and still use them on pages!) and I was never a huge fan of their papers but the latest range is totally fabulous and I’ve already bought (and used!) some of these flowery beauties.

6. Heidi Swapp
This one is a strange one. I have tons of HS in my stash but mainly because I have received so much in kits and also bought an enormous embellishment collection recently. I completely love the ghost shapes and letters but find myself keeping them for “special” occasions, which means I don’t use them much (or ever!). Besides, the range is a bit girly for my “manly” layouts. But I’ve started to plan my BOM and it will be made using only HS items – can’t wait to start!

7. Scenic Route
When I went to Scrap-a-ganza in Holland earlier in the year, I met a new manufacturer: Scenic Route. I’d heard of it but not enough, obviously, because as soon as I saw their products I knew they would be perfect for me. The colors are so suitable for my work; I find myself stockpiling SR papers whenever I find them! I also really, really love the chipboard letters and need to get some more as I’m nearly out!

8. Making Memories
Without a doubt, this is the best manufacturer of tools for me. I love the packaging, the ease of use and the versatility of the tools. I am now waiting with bated breath for the new 12x12 trimmer to be available, as I really, really want one of these. The rubons are the best I’ve ever used and I have never used any other albums other than MM. I also really like the embellishments, as they are so neutral and work with a variety of themes. I consider MM to be like the Chanel of the scrapbooking world: very elegant and timeless.

9. Pebbles Inc
I have a lot of Pebbles in my stash but I must admit not being a great fan of the latest stuff. I really liked their older, vintagey stickers and of course a lot of the I-kandee embellishments. The latest batch of products somehow lacks some WOW factor from me, but I will definitely keep an eye out.

10. American Crafts
I’ve come across these products very recently and it was almost love at first sight. I’d heard about how wonderful the ribbon was – and I agreed – but why had no one told me about how amazing their patterned papers are? I have bought a few already and I can tell that this is going to be a lasting relationship as I am really, really impressed with the quality and the clean, stylish look to their range.

So, there you have it – my top 10 manufacturers. Notice any obvious omissions? No, I didn't forget Basic Grey - it's just that I have never really loved it like everyone else in the scrapping world does!

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