Jan 282014

We just came back from a spaghetti dinner at Cheesecake Factory tonight, the result of John’s claim that our kitchen smells like a glue factory and he didn’t want to cook there. I am working on some book covers with a Valentine’s Day theme, and didn’t really notice the odor, but if it resulted in the chance to eat out, why complain?


On the way home, I convinced John to stop at Archiver’s. If you recall, I mentioned in a previous post that the national chain store is going out of business.  Everything is on sale, currently at 40 to 50 percent off regular price. The stores are supposed to close in mid-February, but as I strolled through the aisles, I did not see enough merchandise to justify staying open that long. Most of the fixtures have pre-sold, and the shelves look like a swarm of locusts went through them. During one of my last trips, I picked up stacking paper trays, which I am happy to report I have completely filled . . . and then some.


Today’s visit to Archiver’s yielded some lovely wooden buttons from the Lucille line of Basic Grey. I imagine these will get used in my crochet projects. I especially like the button that looks like the top of a wooden spool of thread. That one may be saved for a sewing journal.


John discovered some sticky note pads in the back of the store with the Staples brand name on them. All 24 pads cost less than four dollars. Why do we need so many? Well, we don’t, but this year Students for a Creative Iowa is celebrating its 25th anniversary of creative problem-solving, and intends to put up a memory wall at one of the tournaments, where Iowa’s Destination Imagination teams can post notes telling everyone what they especially appreciate, remember or have learned from the program. These sticky note pads will do the trick, I think.


Besides the wooden buttons, I found some Tim Holtz dies I can use to cut out decorative shapes. These were all half-price, what you’d consider “nice to have” at full price, but “gotta have” at half-price.

Tim Holtz Dies

Did you know that if you have an iPhone or Android phone, there’s an app for Tim Holtz products that helps you keep track of the ones you already have, as well as the ones you wish you had? I hear some of you laughing in the background as I describe this thing, and let me assure you that I’m laughing with you. But . . . I have the app, and it’s great!

John tells me that he’s pretty sure I have gotten everything I need or want from Archiver’s by now. He is probably right, but I always hedge my bets with “we’ll see.” And we will!

© 2014 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.

Jan 182014

If you live near an Archiver’s store, then you likely know that the national scrapbooking chain is going out of business very soon. Where I live we are fortunate to have other scrapbooking stores where you can pick up supplies, but I still am sorry about the 12 friendly people who will lose their jobs and the store’s loss itself. On the other hand, this is a very good time, if you are a scrapbooker or paper crafter, to pick up products and fixtures at reduced prices.

John and I have visited the local Archiver’s store several times in the last couple of weeks, each time with a specific goal in mind. Honestly, I do have a lot of paper already on hand, as well as quite a few paper crafting tools, so you might wonder what else I need. But the nature of paper crafting is such that it takes up as much space as you allow. I feel as if I am forever organizing and re-organizing my supplies. As John walked through the store a couple of days ago, he pointed out that it would be a lot easier to store my paper in open acrylic trays than in the lidded boxes I currently use. The lidded boxes can then be used to store finished products, or for supplies and tools that have not yet found a home. Good idea, I thought, so here are the acrylic trays he purchased for me, stacked in the living room at the moment because I have to move things from Point A to Point B in my studio (spare bedroom) before I can fill them up. They were two-thirds the price of the same ones you can purchase online at Scrapbook.com, without the disadvantage of also paying for shipping. The price I got matches the one offered by the manufacturer, Display Dynamics, but without a minimum order requirement or added shipping costs.

Paper Trays

Today I visited Archiver’s to see what I could find in the way of envelopes. I like to use them to make books, so really just about any size works for me. As I was passing a table filled with used items, I looked beneath it and saw a cardboard box brimming with envelopes. The envelopes weren’t marked with any prices, so I asked what the cost would be for the entire box. Five dollars was the welcome answer I got, and you can bet I snapped up that bargain. Apparently these were envelopes that were supposed to accompany sample cards put up for display in the store. Whatever they were originally intended for, they will become book pages in the future! I was really pleased with this bargain.


One of my goals this year is to shop more carefully for paper crafting supplies. It is convenient, of course, to use local retail stores, but not always the most economical way to shop. What is one of the best bargains you’ve discovered for your crafting business?

© 2014 Judy Nolan. All rights reserved.