My 2015 Christmas Product Picks!

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Are you deciding what Christmas products to add to your shopping cart?

I went on a Christmas scrapbook shopping spree last week.

I actually did not buy many Christmas-related products over the last few years so I was feeling the pinch when holiday scrapbooking. I figured a more extravagant shopping trip was in order this year.

So I decided to tell you what I think about the product I bought, both the good and the bad!

(Note: For ME, this is an unusually large amount of Christmas product to buy, but we’re all different. I’m curious to hear whether this seems large to you, too, or rather modest).

Paperclipping Vote for Best Christmas Collection Ever…

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Shimelle’s Christmas Magic collection wins my vote!

  1. The images are so true to my experience of Christmas, both as a child and adult, that just by looking at the pieces I immediately remembered special Christmas stories that I never thought to document before.
  2. Shimelle’s images remind me of the Christmas images of my childhood more than other products I’ve seen.
  3. Shimelle’s thoughtful way of thinking about what she wants out of supplies while she’s scrapbooking translates to wonderful, clever, useful pieces in her own collection.

Shown above: Wood buttons with enamel * Foil stickers * Enamel holly stickers * Ephemera with foil accents * Layered Chipboard Stickers * Vellum with glitter accents

Other Favorite Christmas Embellishments…

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Heidi Swapp’s Wood Pieces
The images are wonderful, but my favorite thing about these are the bold Christmas red! I will never understand why it is so rare to find Christmas-themed scrapbooking supplies in Christmas red.

Heidi Swapp’s Wood Veneer Shapes

Thank you, Heidi!

Lil B’s Nutcrackers
Of course, since I have a ballerina who dances yearly in the Nutcracker, I keep my eyes open for this icon. I am absolutely THRILLED with these little guys. They are the best I’ve found in my search of 4 years!

They are highly detailed, classic, intricate, layered, shiny, small enough to not overwhelm your page…they’re basically perfect.

If nutcrackers aren’t your thing, they have other similar supplies, but with different images that are also wonderful.

Little B’s Mini Class Nutcrackers

Products that almost hit the mark for me, but not quite…

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American Crafts Glitter Stars
I was so excited about these stars. Glitter, dimension…love, love, love.

The problem: They’re TOO dimensional to be realistically used in scrapbooking, in my opinion.

The gold and silver stars are not quite as bad as the red and green, which are about a full inch in height and are very pointy. The gold and silver are about 3/4ths the height of the red and green and a little flatter at the point.

BUT…they look FANTASTIC, so if you love inch-thick dimension, or you have a different non-scrapbooky use for these, by all means, get them.

You can also do what I did in the video to be released next Monday — I altered them so they’re a bit flatter.

Gold and Red glitter stars * Silver and Gold glitter stars

American Crafts Let It Snow Paper Pad
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I like the patterns in this collection. My main beef goes back to the shade of red. It almost always comes down to the reds for me!

The cover makes these papers look like they have that beautiful vibrant Christmas red that I’m always looking for. Unfortunately, the actual papers in the pad are really a very dull red.

In the photo above you can see that the red on the paper pad is as vibrant as the red of Heidi Swapp’s wood veneer. But when you look at the actual paper there is a big difference…
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If you don’t like a bright red, then this might be a plus for you. (But who in the world doesn’t love a true Christmas red at Christmas time?!)

It’s possible that the individual sheets (if they have them) are more vibrant. Paper pads come notoriously duller because they’re lower quality. Unfortunately, individual sheets were not offered where and when I was shopping, so I have no idea if they would be the true Christmas red we see on the cover.

American Crafts Let It Snow paper pad

Ways to get a true Christmas red when your products aren’t providing it for you

Are you also lamenting a lack of true, bold, bright Christmas red in patterned paper?

I have some ways to make up for this! Please stay tuned. I’ll be back with a video next Monday that shares some strategies for easily getting Christmas red into your albums when you can’t find it in your papers. :)

If you know of a Christmas paper collection that has a true vibrant Christmas red, please share!

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  • I totally agree with you about Shimelle’s Christmas line… gorgeous! I bought way more of it than I had expected to because I just loved it so much. oops!

    Heidi’s stuff is always gorgeous… she just makes pretty stuff!

    Those stars would be too tall for me too.

    I also agree about the Christmas red. I will say, the burgundy red’s, and the distressed reds are a disappointment to me. (Those distressed reds are distressing!) -okay, that was lame, but you get my point!

    Thanks for sharing your haul, and the pro’s and con’s of it all. I’m sure you’ll be creating some beautiful pages!

  • Debbie Piercey

    I think your haul is on the modest side. But it is very smart shopping because I have an overload of Christmas items because I over purchased and I’m just not that inspired by them anymore. I will have to check out Shimelle’s line. They look awesome!

  • Sugarlandnana

    Thanks for the recommendations especially the adorable little nutcrackers. My daughter and I have a tradition of going to the Houston Ballet Nutcracker every year. We’ve gone since she was 4 years old and she’s 29 now. I’ve never scrapbooked that story, but now I will!

    As for Christmas reds, I think PinkFresh Studio Christmas Wishes comes pretty close. I got several papers and embellishments from that collection in my recent Hip Kit Club kit and I love the whole collection. I’ve been looking for an aqua and true red collection for years and this fits the bill. I got all the add-ons as well, so I won’t be needing to buy Christmas products for a while! ;-) I’m attaching a quick photo I took of some of the items, so hopefully you can see if this is what you’re looking for.

  • Christine Palka

    Looking forward to seeing your video next week. I usually don’t purchase Christmas supplies. Although I love the Christmas season, I have a hard time scrapping the photos. The photos are so busy with all the Christmas colours gift wrap and various people (who don’t dress in coordinating outfits, of course!) in them, that it’s a challenge for me. I want to start documenting the stories though, so I’m going to give it a go this year and document some childhood memories. I might turn the photos black and white to make it easier.

    To further simplify the process, I purchased the Candy Cane Lane kit from Scrapbook and Cards Today. Shimelle’s Christmas line looks very pretty and nostalgic. I understand what you are saying about the Christmas Red. I’m a traditionalist when it comes to Christmas. I do like the addition of some lighter accent colours like pinks and mints to help lighten up the pages a bit.

  • tyfb_Ginny

    I also like a true red. Thanks for the review!

  • Islemartin

    Amen to the dead red reveal. Not even close. Your spree is pretty modest In my mind. I had not seen the Heidi wood wonderland before. So thanks for pointing them out. Shimelle’s Xmas line this year first left me underwhelmed for lack of glitz and glamor. But later I realized it is so agelessly retro it will be great for JYC prompts to the past, whether mine of the 1940s clear up to my children’s of the 1960/70s. So I bought as much as Shimille linked to in her JYC 2015 Kit email that was then still available in Scrapbook.com. I am glad you are taking advantage of sponsor link income via Amazon, Scrapbook.com etc. After all, every bit helps and more is more. Great post and thanks for HS woodies tip. Simona

  • Julie Paradise

    For me this seems to be a rather modest haul, but I have only started scrapbooking about 2 years ago so I did not have that much of a stash, but am tackling my (3rd — first one went in another direction) 2nd December Daily his year, so when I did my Christmas supplies shopping, I did have an actual project in mind.

    What served me really well so far were the October Afternoon Christmas lines, I just always love all of them (and all the other lines and products they come up with — I am an OA fangirl!) and have bought collection kits and additional items from the “Make it Merry”, “Silent Night” and the new “Under the Tree” collections. These often contain some eye catchers (like the papers with the snowmen or the mice holding the candy sticks), awesome stamp sets and always great reds + calmer, more subtle patterns, woodgrains and such, so it was never a problem to scrap those busy photos, @Christine Palka mentioned. And the OA lines coordinate really well with older collections.

    Especially the stamps make it really easy to stretch your stash and unify a larger project like a DD even if you run out of paper, because you still have the imagery of the originaly line. I just love that! (And did notice that OA seems to be among the very few manufacturers who give you that opportunity; Echo Park and Carta Bella (actually an EP sub-brand as I understand it) also do that, but not to this extent, as OA mostly comes with phrases, patterns on rubber stamps _and_ the illustratios from the collections.)

    My other favourite is the Crate Paper “Bundled Up” collection, as it comes with a coordinating Project Life Theme Pack (http://beckyhiggins.com/wp-content/themes/beckyhiggins-theme/assets/pdf/reference/theme_packs/60/bh_winter_cardreference.pdf — see what I mean? Those are the icons and colour combinations and patterns of the Crate collection).

    Haaaa, Christmas + pretty paper = heaven!

  • Gabrielle McCann

    I”m so excited to get my hands on Shimelle’s Christmas line – I just love the look of it!

    I”m not sure what it is, but I’m an absolute sucker for Christmas themed products so much so that I have an entire Cropper Hopper tote full! But I will still buy as much of Shimelle’s line as I can!!!

  • disqus_rtrf0BF366

    Thanks for these reviews. I would never have considered “real” red before but now I am hooked. Thanks for your suggestions and opinions. Very helpful.