Friday, August 7, 2009

Manufacturer Mania: Passion for Paper

The Summer months have us focusing on some of the underlying elements to our creations. Last month, we looked at collage resources. This month, we follow our passions into the world of patterned paper.

While I love browsing through the aisles at my local stamping and scrapbooking stores, there are times that I am looking for something very specific when it comes to paper. Things have changed a lot in the last few years and now you can find a lot of designer paper online and even subscribe to blogs featuring your favorite brand.

Stamps: Alpha Stamps, Invoke Arts; Paper: BasicGrey Boxer Fedora available from Two Peas in a Bucket

Today, I'd like to show you three different types of online resources - brand specific, superstores and specialty stores.

The first type is the specific brand resource. Graphic 45 is a great example of a paper company taking its online presence to a new level for crafters. It's well-designed site provides a great look at all its various lines with pictures of all the papers included in a collection. Like many of the paper sites, you cannot purchase from their site directly but they do have a store locator search feature.

Part of what makes this a great resource is that it can help you work with your local stores to see if they will be picking up a specific new release or which papers they will carry of an older line. Sometimes with highly graphic paper, it can be difficult to figure out where to start in your creation. Graphic 45 has a fantastic blog which demonstrates the many uses for their pretty paper including sketches and projects.

Stamp: Paperbag Studios; Paper: Graphic 45

The next type of resource is the online superstore. I have a few favorites for picking out paper. At these larger e-stores, you can pick papers from many different lines just like at your local stamp store. While it won't replace the touch-and-feel aspect of your favorite brick-and-morter, these superstores do allow you a wonderful range of choice and often some wonderful keyword search abilities. Some great examples are Scrapbook.com, StickerPlanet, PaperAddict.com, and Two Peas in a Bucket. Often these larger stores have online communities and blogs of their own to give you even more inspiration. One of my favorite stores is actually a large manufacturer who develops so many different lines, that I can almost always find something I want - Creative Imaginations.

Stamps: Alpha Stamps, Serendipity; Paper: Bo-Bunny purchased from StickerPlanet

The last resource I want to explore is the specialty store where only one type of paper is featured. ScrapYourTrip.com is a wondeful place to find papers and embellishments that compliment specific destination and types of travel. In recent years, ScrapYourTrip.com has expanded to include specific hobbies, sports, occassions and groups.

Stamp: Artistic Outpost; Paper: Baseballs from Scrap Your Trip's own line; Cosmo Cricket's Lil Man Elements available from Scrapbook.com, and 7Gypsies' Elgin available from Paper Addict.

So when you are looking for that special paper to really add a little spice to your creations, don't forget how many resources are right at your fingertips. Don't forget to check our sidebar for some of these great paper blogs.

Of course, all our Yahoo Group members have access to Gingersnap Creations' ever-growing database of designer paper resources featuring over 70 links to your favorite brands. Want more resources? Check out our other resource databases featuring stamp manufacturers, challenge blogs, and collage resources.

Stay tuned in September when Manufacturer Mania highlights the amazing images of the Stampsmith!

1 comment:

Thanks for your wonderful words!

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