Saturday, June 9, 2012

Convention Talk- The Swap Process

Hi Everyone,

Grab your cuppa and have a read :-)

Yes I'm back from our Annual Stampin Up - Australia/New Zealand conference held in Canberra ACT and it was awesome which I shall share over a few further posts. But first I shall back track to the lead- up to convention.

Convention is not just about a whole lot of Demo's and some guests getting together to get the latest goss and news from the Business leaders but its also about building friendships, networking, nurturing your team, learning and exchanging skills and being injected with encouragement that spurs you on to want to do better. 
There certaintly isn't any pressure, no 'high pressure sales' speels, but more of a 'show and tell' and an exchange of information- that lets you decide how you want to conduct your connection in Stampin Up- doing it "You Way".

One of the things that I discovered last year prior to going to my first convention is the tradition of "Swaps". This is never a "have to thing" but personally up to the individual. Its also up to each person on the quanity and design of that swap. Some are very simple and some are quiet involved accordingly to whatever that demo/guest wishes to do. This is great because you get a variety of ideas and different ways of using a simular product or idea. The only 'rule' is that the swaps be made from current catalogue supplies (because hey if you like it you want to repeat it yourself hey???...) plus these are ideas that can further your workshop displays etc.

And if there is any other rule or request- it is in the value of friendship that you swap with whoever asks and that we do our very best efforts when putting that swap together. So they are a lot of fun and quiet a bit of buzz in the air when the swapping process is taking place. My only sad part is that sometimes it seems to happen so quickly that you cannot always remember 'faces' to 'names', sometimes on reflection later you realize that amongst the swaps, the creator has been someone's work you have been paying close attention to or others that have encouraged your creative journey !!! :-) 

Some on Stampin Connection and perhaps my blog here may remember when I introduced the idea of a "dress" using the Rue Des Fleurs Stamp Set.(I'm sure someone else in the world thought of it too)  It was something I noticed as a possibility as soon as i spotted its respective parts in the mini catalogue and couldnt wait to see it  could be done. I have since seen some fine examples of it and an extentsion of ideas beyond my original upload.

So Ruthy decides to do 54 swaps- why 54 you say??? 13 for my JAI team of lovely girls, 1 to keep and the other 40 to swap at convention. My favourite of course was the teal selection with Pool Party ribbon but my supplies didn;t extend to doing them all the same. the best way to tackle such a large amount of one design is the 'Assembly-Line' Method and yes I wont lie that while this might be a more efficient method of doing one action over and over again, by the time the whole project amount is complete I am eternally grateful (and partly think I'm crazyyyyyyy) and I am my own worse critic of my work, so I hope everyone else can look beyond what I cannot. Here is a photographic process of how it took place-

Lots of Stamping .....(54 plus a few extras)

Lots of fussy cutting......... (and I ask myself - why am I doing this .......???? Ah yes - I love a challenge- and challenged I am, to thinking I'm crazy!!!)
(and yes I'm using those sharps under careful supervision- aka Lollie our family cat!)

 54 plus a few later........ that's 54 bodices and another 54 skirts- 108 pieces of fussy cutting......
Even the cat is getting dozzy........


and repeat each step 54 times to all other 
parts of this design.... why is it that when you do one as the original concept,  it never seems so involved LOL!......

stamped 'hello' x 54 ready to be punched with the jewellery tag punch

The final Recipe, one of these on the back of each swap aka 'card front'. 
 The final finish designs
a 'Red' example 
Red and Teal - go well together 
 Pink/Red - below (ok I'll say it not my fav- bit disappointed that the red skirt frill while from the same paper collection did not go as well with the dark centre of the floral flowers as I had hoped and it screamed at me but it was all finished and yes I'm being picky- hopefully others will take the idea first before the colour coordination)
 My personal favourite- Teal/Pool Party collection and yep they went first, but all my swaps were gone very quickly, I hope everyone was happy with them,

All packaged in plastic press-seal bags and ready to swap

The awesome result is you have at least met 54 more like-minded creative people you might of otherwise never spoken to and you have 54 more creative ideas to help you along for the rest of the year!!!
And remember not all of us are crazy, some do lovely elegant simpler designs and they are as equally appreciated!!! So I hope you are encouraged to join in the next swap opportunity that comes your way :-)

Have a great weekend,

 - Ruthy 


  1. Ruthy thank you sooo much for my beautiful swap, I just love it! So much detail and fussy cutting, you put so much love and time into this card and it shows and is very much appreciated. ♥

  2. Thanks Mae and may I say I equally love yours too part of it may be my inspiration for tomorrow's workshop, shall let you know. Only sorry I didn't get to see you this time, but Brissie hey darls??? see you there :-)

  3. Ruth these cards are awesome! There is so much detail and parts to them. I have admired them on Stampin' Connection. Sorry I missed getting one!
    Continue to share your beautiful work. I love your style. They always have such charm to them - and are gorgeous!
    Jenny x

  4. I was lucky enough to get one of your 40 cards they were amazing, as was your fabric display - the hours you must have put into that as well, thank you for the inspiration.

  5. WOW - these are truly amazing and each individual works of art!! I wish I had seen you to swap with you as these really are so gorgeous.....I agree that the swapping can be quite a frenzied event!! See you at Regionals hopefully!! Xx

  6. Oh wow ... my jaw just hit the floor! These are so gorgeous and well worth all that hard work.

  7. Stunning little works of at Ruth! I thought I liked fussy cutting, but even I wouldn't attempt THAT many - go you ♥

  8. They are even more stunning IRL Ruthy, you are such an inspiration and your eye for detail is brilliant and such an incredible amount of work, but l still think your nut's though..:0)
    Can l just say that your post was one of the most enjoyable l have read in a long time!
    Missing my roomie. xxx

  9. Your swaps are definitely worth all the hard work you put into them. I'm so glad to have one.


  10. Just gorgeous Ruth, sad face as I didn't receive one (though totally my own fault as I had Zero to swap lol), but as always Ruth I love your work, you put in so much effort and it always pays off, wonderful job, hugs Melxx

  11. Wow, I would definitely swap more often if I could receive such pretty cards! Your swap is gorgeous!!!