Once I had the paint chip sanded nicely, I used a square punch to cut a square from each of the four colors and mounted them on some white cardstock with a border.
I am the cofounder of a large women's business networking group and one of the basic principals that we founded the group on is "embrace your competition". Your competition can be your best business ally if you handle the relationship in the right way. Nothing will hurt your image or make you look more petty than walking into a room and being uncomfortable because your competition is there. In my opinion Stampin Up is looking very petty and insecure right now. There is enough business out there for everyone, even in this tough economy and there's no need to take the attitude that SU is taking right now. My jewelry business, which is my full time business, is an example of that. My success is a direct result of being contacted by and working with my biggest competitor.
I also think that Stampin Up is being very unfair to their demonstrators because they are going to have a hard time promoting their product if they cannot participate in the real papercrafting world. It's all about networking and getting to know people. You aren't going to get very far when you are restricted to the point that you can't form a synergistic relationship with someone else in the business or papercrafting industry. Why would online forums and other online resources want to have SU demonstrators participating if they get no reciprocity from the demonstrators or Stampin Up. Stampin Up is trying to build one sided relationships that only benefit them and business does not work that way.
In my opinion Stampin Up has a wonderful, quality selection of exclusive products and should be able to stand on their own in the competitive papercrafting market without imposing these strict rules. If they are concerned and want to look at their business practices, they should consider not carrying things are not exclusive to them (because the ones they carry are overpriced) and expand their exclusive line. They should take a look at pricing or at the percentage they are paying their demonstrators, which in my opinion is low but I guess it's in line with other direct sales companies.
So now that I've told you how I feel, let me tell what I've decided. I've decided that I no longer want to be a customer of Stampin Up and I no longer want my blog to be one big Stampin Up promotion. Why should I allow my blog to be one big Stampin Up promotion when they take the attitude that they are? And to that end, I've decided to sell off all of my Stampin Up stamp sets and supplies. This may sound harsh but I feel very strongly about not supporting or promoting a company that takes this kind of business approach.
I've spent the last couple of days listing my stamp sets on ebay for a starting price of 99 cents each. I've got about 120 sets on there starting today and I'm trying to find time to list the rest- about another 150 sets. I am hoping that they all sell for enough money that I can place some decent orders with companies like Papertrey (which carries a nice line of coordinating papers and inks), GinaK (who seems to be a class act and has some great stamp images) and maybe even some Close to My Heart to replenish my stamps and supplies.
So back to my original point.... with all of this going on, my studio is in disarray as I sell off all of my stamps and buy new. This is going to make it difficult to create and post to my blog for the next couple of weeks. I hope if you are a regular reader of mine that you will stick with me and wait to see what new stamps and new projects this change brings.
As for Stampin Up... just as demonstrators will never be able to mention another company on their blogs, this will be the very last time they are ever mentioned on my blog.
One last thing.... I know that this whole situation has caused much debate all over the internet and I also know that some blogs that state opinions are being bombarded with comments both good and bad. Please know that I do not mean to start or continue controversy by stating my opinion here. I felt the need to state my opinion because it's something I feel strongly about and it is significantly changing the course of this blog. I hope you understand that.
Thanks for reading this far and I look forward to taking this blog in a new direction soon. I hope you'll join me.
(Edited to add: I've been asked to share my ebay name so that some can take advantage of my sale. My ebay seller name is moonwitch106. Thanks for taking a look at my items and remember, there will be more listed next week too.)