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Saturday, 7 July 2018

Julie tries out the brand new Sizzix Hot Glue Gun and accessories

Hi everyone

Phew, what a scorcher - and we're not just talking about the fabulous 2-0 defeat by England against Sweden today! With temperatures still hitting 30+ celsius (centigrade) here, it's definitely a case of stay inside, close the blinds, switch on the air con and indulge in some cool, therapeutic crafting!

So, speaking of hot, we recently took stock of the brand new Sizzix Hot Glue Gun and accessories, and Julie decided to try them out. Here, she reveals her thoughts on this new range.



Hello fellow crafters! Julie here. I hope you're enjoying our glorious summer, a bit hot for me I have to say.

So, firstly, I'd like to admit that I haven't really used a glue gun much before, and have tended to use strong acrylic glue in a bottle and double-sided tape to stick things together, so the glue gun was new territory for me. That said, I had one from a well-known supermarket chain which I had been using, so it was a great opportunity to do a direct comparison between that and the new Sizzix one.

What I liked straight away was that it's quite a compact glue gun, and very lightweight, and the "trigger" was very easy to squeeze, meaning lots of control of glue flow, which is good for me as I have small hands and a bit of arthritis in my fingers and also hate getting large blobs of hot glue on everything! I'm sure you can relate. The other thing I like is the fact that you switch it on and off at the handle, rather than having to switch it off at the plug socket or unplug it when you want to switch it off, and it has a light on the back, near where the glue sticks go in, so you know for sure if it's on or off! It has a good long cable, about 1.5 metres, so plenty to play with. It has a fitted metal stand, which you can just about see in the picture. There is a continental adaptor included in the pack for when you go abroad anywhere in Europe and need to take your glue gun with you. Of course, once it's out of the packaging, you've got to store it somewhere and try not to lose it, but I think it's still a nice little extra thought from Sizzix.


Along with the glue gun, there is a matching stand, which is sold separately, and which I really like although obviously it takes up space on your work surface, but it looks great and does the job it's supposed to do, plus a bit more besides, because there is also space behind the upright stand section to store a few essential bits. You can see there are several different slots for the "propping up bit", and a small grey silicone mat at the front to catch glue drips - great idea! You can also keep the finger protectors and glue spreader on the stand, so everything is together in one place.


The finger protectors and glue spreader come with a mat to protect your work surface. Having had the very unpleasant experience of getting a tiny spot of hot glue on my finger and pulling it off along with several layers of skin (ouch!), I think these finger protectors are essential!



So, the next thing is comparing the nozzle with that of the glue gun I was already using. As you can see, there's really no difference in the size of the hole, but the metal nozzle itself is quite long and tapers off, so it's easier to use in small areas than my existing one.


The glue sticks come in packs of 12 and one stick lasts ages!



As I used the glue gun I was struck by just how much I could control the glue flow and it was much easier applying small amounts to my project than with the other one because of that easy to use lever/trigger. I found the finger protectors really handy because I no longer had that fear of getting hot glue on my fingers, and using them meant I could actually touch the hot glue and spread it a little and pull away those little strands of glue that are left behind, and apply pressure to stick my fabric layers together, all without burning my fingers! The glue cools and sets quite quickly so you have to work fast.




So, this isn't marketed as a fabric glue, but the hot glue worked perfectly fine sticking my fabric layers together.

Although I wasn't doing anything particularly fiddly on this occasion, I am confident that this glue gun is definitely fit for purpose and that it, along with the other accessories, are very good value for money.

Julie x


Thanks Julie!

So, these have been selling really well, but if you've not yet invested in one of these glue guns and accessories (all available separately or as a bundle offer) then hopefully this will reassure you that it is a great investment. Head over to the shop and pick yours up today. Here's the link: http://www.beebaabcraftingsupplies.co.uk/Sizzix?page=7


See you soon!
Team Beebaab

Friday, 6 July 2018

It's been a while!

Hi everyone, it's been a while, so sorry. We've been incredibly busy with the shop this year and time is just flying by!

We have been working hard behind the scenes to bring you products which we hope you'll love. Those of you who are subscribed to our newsletters or follow us on Facebook or Twitter will know just how many gorgeous new products we've been bringing in this year!

You can always find out what's new in by visiting our shop at www.beebaabcraftingsupplies.co.uk and checking out our Just In section or our News articles (link at bottom of shop's front page). And the best way to get to know what's happening is to subscribe to our newsletter. We send these out generally once a week, sometimes twice.

We are also advertising in Craft Stamper and Crafts Beautiful magazines so keep an eye out for us in those two fabulous publications and hopefully you will be inspired by the products and projects featured ;)

So, with all of this going on, there has sadly been very little time to actually "play"! Much to my frustration I might add, but needs must and all that.

I do have a few things to share with you, which showcase some of the products we have in stock, so, in no particular order, here are some pretty pictures for you to look at, along with details of the main "ingredients" used for each project. I hope they might inspire you.

These first two are small deep box frame pieces, measuring about 5 inches square. Products used were First Edition Botanical Notes papers, Tim Holtz word stickers (I can't remember which ones though), Sizzix Thinlits Butterflies (this one is currently reduced - but only for a couple of days!!!).





Next, we have some bits and pieces made using the a-maz-ing bubbalux! It's definitely a product you have to play with to get to know it, and at the moment it's more a case of my inexperience with this product rather than the product being hard to work with, because it is not hard to work with, you just need to play with it a bit! You can die-cut it (using Bigz and similar dies), emboss it, paint it, print on it, stamp it, heat it for shaping .... the possibilities are endless. It's very sturdy stuff and suitable for use inside and out.

Obviously, the main ingredient for all of these makes was the bubbalux - which comes in 6 colours by the way! I also used acrylic paints and gilding waxes, plus a topcoat of varnish on some items. I cheated and die-cut all the pieces except the bookmark as I have arthritis in some of my fingers so using a craft knife can be very painful for me, but don't let that stop you using templates and a nice, sharp knife!

I made a 3-leaf pendant, with the die-cut leaves being embossed using an embossing folder - this stuff embosses really well!



A bookmark - I cut a piece of bubbalux to size and ran it through my die-cutting machine using a small embossing folder, then I painted each butterfly by hand - time-consuming but worth it! 



A small hanging mandala. This was again die-cut but then I used an embossing tool to hand-emboss the design onto it - easy-peasy! Glued on some mulberry paper flowers and wire stems to decorate, coloured with gilding wax.



A keyring - again, die-cut, with hand-embossed design. I actually coloured this with alcohol inks - bubbalux takes alcohol inks really well. Then distressed the edges using an emery board.



A picture frame - the front has been embossed using an embossing folder. Then I painted it with acrylic paint and once that was dry I sanded back using an emery board to give a distressed appearance. I die-cut the multi-layer flower and ran it through my machine between my cutting pads - they have been used loads and so have lots of texture on them now, which was perfect for what I wanted to achieve here! A couple of coats of red acrylic, then sanded back with the emery board again.



Finally with the bubbalux, some layered flowers and some foliage, all made using Sizzix Bigz dies, then each piece was heated to shape it. It gets really pliable if heated for long enough, but it also cools very quickly, so stiffens up again very quickly. The great news is that if you aren't happy with how you've shaped a piece, you can just heat it up again to flatten it out and then start again! None of these pieces are painted - these are the bright colours that the bubbalux comes in! There's also blue and black, which I haven't used here. I turned these flowers and foliage pieces into a mobile but it hasn't quite worked out as I hoped - novice mobile maker here - so I haven't shared a photo of that as it needs some more work to refine it!



Next, we have some cards. This first one was made using Craft Consortium's Wildflower Meadow 12x12 paper pad and a Sizzix Intricate Florals die - Decorative Corners. I used an assortment of Sizzix and Creative Expressions dies for the sentiments on the cards. Stamps used are from my personal stash. I made this first card for a friend and liked the idea of her having a vase of flowers from me every time she opened the card - they will never wilt and die!




Then two made using First Edition's Botanical Notes paper pad and assorted dies.






Another card, this one made using First Edition's Botanical Beauty paper pad. I also used several Sizzix dies, including Tropical Bird and Meadow Leaves, both by Sophie Guilar.




One more card, this time made using First Edition's Blacked Out paper pad and Tim Holtz's Stitched Slots die. I also used the Sizzix die called Male Occasions.




So there you are, a few bits and pieces, which I hope you will like and which inspire you in some way.

Thanks for reading this and, fingers crossed, it won't be quite so long before the next post! In the meantime though, do pop over to our shop to take a look at not only the products I used in these makes, but also all the new goodies which have just arrived! And don't forget, all UK orders over the value of £15 qualify for free UK shipping!

Happy crafting, enjoy the summer while it lasts.

Bye for now!
Julie x

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

INSPIRATION FROM CRAFT CONSORTIUM

Hi everyone

We have been provided with lots of samples from our friends at Craft Consortium to give you more inspiration for using the Tell The Bees and English Garden 12x12 papers and stamps so, whilst we don't have an Inspiration page currently set up, we thought we'd share the images here for you to browse. Enjoy! (With thanks to Craft Consortium and their Design Team for all of these amazing projects.)












  





  






We hope these help you all to see the versatility of these gorgeous paper pads and stamps and fire up your creative mojos! The paper pads are available at our shop, along with stamps for English Garden. We also have some fabulous stamps, dies and charms available in the Bee Happy collection from Dovecraft, and a gorgeous stamp from Rubber Dance called Buzzy Bees, which would all work fantastically well with the Tell The Bees papers! Hit the Shop Now button and go and treat yourself!

Back soon!

Team Beebaab


Saturday, 28 October 2017

Hedgehogs and other woodland wonders

Hello everyone and thank you for popping in today.

We have some more inspiration for you today, but this time using Craft Consortium/Hackney & Co Winter Woodland 12x12 paper pad and toppers together with Funny Fungi and Snazzy Squirrel stamps from Rubber Dance. Today the focus is on cards made using these products and is just a taster - there will be more inspiration over the next few weeks to show you how to use these and other products from these two manufacturers.

So without further ado, here are the cards, in no particular order!

This first card used Rubber Dance's Snazzy Squirrel stamp, which I coloured using Distress Markers. I kept the squirrel all the same colour for this design. I toyed with the idea of fussy cutting this out but couldn't find a background paper I was happy to have as the "sky" so decided to leave it like this instead. The background papers used have lots of acorns and sycamore seeds on them.


The next card actually took my breath away because the inside was not planned! I fussy cut the gorgeous white poinsettias from one of the 12x12 sheets to make a kind of wreath. I then decided to use the lovely silver pearlescent paper with the white poinsettia design for the background paper on the front and die-cut a scallop circle aperture out of the centre. I was going to use the same paper on the inside of the card with a central focal point of some sort, or sentiment, but it has the gorgeous, gorgeous winter forest design on the other side and I just happened to sit it that side up initially and saw through the aperture and it was a real take-my-breath-away "Wow!" moment. I just love how you can see the winter forest through that "window". So it stayed that way up, I couldn't do anything else really, could I?!


On the inside I also stamped a lovely reindeer and the sentiment peace & joy.


This next one used part of the cover from the Winter Woodland paper pad! I die-cut it to use as a topper. I also fussy cut another white poinsettia and two red ones from another sheet from the pad. The background paper is mistletoe wreaths, which I think is very pretty.


Inside this card I used the same paper again, with a scallop circle of white card in the centre for writing on, and another fussy cut poinsettia.


This last card uses another Rubber Dance stamp, Funny Fungi, which I coloured using Promarkers and then cut out, along with adorable hedgehog paper and a dark green one which is covered in lighter green foliage and white berries, almost like blackberries, but perhaps before they're ripe? I also used a large hedgehog and some toadstools toppers from the Winter Woodland paper pad.


As you can see, our hedgehog is starting to gather leaves together ready for hibernation! (The leaves were fussy cut from the hedgehogs paper.)

I really love how all of these cards worked out and I hope they inspire you to have a go with these papers and the adorable Rubber Dance stamps.

The paper pads and stamps are available in our shop - head over and take a look and treat yourself to these beautiful products.

Back soon with more inspiration!

Julie x