Crafty Field Trip- The INK PAD in NYC

The Ink Pad; 7th Avenue, NYC

What’s better than visiting New York City? Visiting a craft store in New York City! Last month while we were visiting, I found out that the Ink Pad was only a few blocks from my husbands’ new apartment. I ditched the family for a few hours and headed over to check it out! So, side story. I walked in and started checking things out. After the initial, “Hi, is there anything you are looking for/Can I help you?” greeting, one […]

Crafty Field Trip- Paper Presentations in NYC

Paper Presentations NYC

You all know that I love love love to travel- and part of the fun is finding a craft store (or two, or three!) while I’m there. Last week I was in New York City (Manhattan) in the Madison Square Park area, right by the historic Flatiron building. We spent much of the week walking around and seeing sights- (I can share some of the architecture photos on another day, if you like.) But of course I had to take […]

Overview and Demo of the Photo Sleeve Fuse by We R Memory Keepers

Photo Sleeve Fuse by WRMK

One of the coolest tools at CHA 2015 was the new Photo Sleeve Fuse tool. Used to cut and fuse plastic sheets and scrapbooking page protectors, this heat tool creates opportunities to make custom pockets for scrapbooking, waterfall cards and pages, and even attach embellishments. I am pleased to team up with WRMK today to share with you this overview and let you know that there is a special bundle coming soon to HSN!  Disclosure: Samples provided for review purposes; however my opinions are […]

Pat Catan’s Craft Haul

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 3.26.37 PM

Well, it’s a busy time here at CTD WHQ- kids are out of school and into camps, (and mischief) we’ve started demolition on our kitchen remodel, my husband is in transition with work, and I’m working on my projects for Hands On Crafts for Kids.  We film the entire season in one week in July, and this season I’ve got increased hosting duties and I’m designing quite a few of the projects I’ll be sharing on-camera. This means that while […]

Craft Room Confessional- I am a planner failure

Craft Room Confessional- I am a planner failure! Why can't i get the hang of using a planner??

So when I bought my Kikki K planner in March, I had high hopes and visions of a planned, organized, lovely lifestyle. Cute notes! Washi tape! Adorable reminders! Guess what? Not so much. I’m not sure why, but I’m just not getting the hang of it. I keep a lot of what I have to do in my head…. or scribble on manilla tags….and then I forget to put it into the planner. I’d love some ideas and links to […]

The Next Big Thing: Periscope

I'd love to see you there! @CraftTestDummy

So the other day a fellow crafty bloggy friend announced that she was on a new social media channel, Periscope. I immediately cringed inside…because, REALLY? I already juggle Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, and am trying to get in the habit of Vine. But I took a peek at this app for your iPhone/iPad or Android device…and in minutes I was downloaded, signed up, and hooked. Here’s a blurb from the website: Just over a year ago, we became fascinated by […]

Craft Haul- LSS Rummage Sale!

Craft Haul- LSS Rummage Sale

This week my Local Stamping Store (LSS- shout out to Stamplistic in Amherst) had a rummage sale at their new location. The idea is that you could bring in your gently used tools and stamps and the store sells them for you. YOU do the pricing, the store does the work, and you get the amount sold in store credit for NEW STUFF. Well, I’m not a snob. I love a good tag sale and it’s new to me, right? […]

New Products Announced from Silhouette- Mint and Curio!

New Silhouette Products- the Mint and Curio!

Yesterday I got an intriguing email from Silhouette America announcing new products! (Remember the good old days when companies used the CHA summer show for their big releases? Sigh.) Anyway, we haven’t seen a new machine from Silhouette in quite a while, so this REALLY caught my attention- and now TWO? Introducing the Silhouette Mint ( a stamping machine) and the Curio (a new mixed-media diecutter.) Note: all of this information is taken from the websites- there are no machines […]

Operation Write Home Announces Closure


Today I got my weekly SitRep from Operation Write Home’s founder, Sandy Allnock- and it included a shocker. Due to the troops being withdrawn (and correspondingly the number of cards needed) there is beginning to be an imbalance in the amount of administration time needed and the folks being served. So she’s decided to wrap it up. Take a look at the full 12-minute video here: Here are some important highlights: There will probably be funds left over from OWH- so […]

24 Ideas to Use Up Fabric Scraps

24 ideas for using up scrap fabric!

Another confession: I hoard fabric scraps. Sometimes is the color, sometimes it’s the texture, sometimes it’s just that it’s a bit of a piece of clothing or reminds me of something I can’t let go of yet. So I hold on to a ton of fabric scraps! Today, I have a ton of great ideas for using up fabric scraps- some from me, but a bunch from other talented crafters/bloggers/designers. SO many great ideas here!     So…now are you […]

Crafting and Cruising!

It seems that I’ve been living a whirlwind life of travel these days… we just got back from Melbourne and then we were off as a family for a Royal Caribbean cruise. Of course, I brought my travel kit and couldn’t resist taking a peek at what the craft activities offered on our ship, the Oasis of the Seas. While onboard, I made you a little video! You can tell I’m really in “cruise” mode because I’m not wearing makeup […]

Packing for a Polymer Clay Retreat!

Front flap zips down and clear pockets snap off.

Last fall my crafty BFF Vicki O’Dell, the Creative Goddess (you should check out her site and I took a little in-state road trip to the International Polymer Clay Associations’ polymer clay retreat! It was a weekend in Dublin, Ohio, at a hotel…but while the venue was small, it packed it a lot of fun and information! But…this post is about PACKING for the retreat. You see, it was the first one I’d even been to, and I just […]

Friday Giveaway from Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft®

Contest open 3/27-4/12/2015. Must be 18 years old or older to enter, international entries accepted!

Happy Friday, folks! This is the last weekend of National Craft Month and I have a FABULOUS giveaway for you, courtesy of our friends at Faber-CastellDesign Memory Craft®. You know how much I love my Gelatos (you can see posts here and here) and now is your chance to win some of the newest colors! This is a YUMMY prize pack! I made you a video showing you these new colors.   Ready to enter? Of course you are! Click […]

Crafty Field Trip to Melbourne, pt 1: Kikki K!

Kikki K field trip, Melbourne Australia

While I was traveling in Melbourne, I found a Kikki K shop and wandered in. I’d been seeing a lot of planners online and was interested in them… so I treated myself! The shop was lovely, too. I finally cracked it open when I got home. I made a little video of unboxing and initial set up….     Do you use a planner? If so, what kind?  You also may enjoy my post on the art & architecture of […]

Giveaway: Stick With It Palette

Stick With It Giveaway! Open March 20-27 2015! International friends my enter!!

Yesterday I reviewed the Stick With It Palette- and today you’ll have a chance to win one! Here’s a little video I made about the giveaway, too:   You have so many options to enter, including a daily tweeting option! Good luck and thanks for entering! Click the blue text below if your browser doesn’t allow the widget to show. a Rafflecopter giveaway

CHA 2015 – Tim Holtz Idea-ology Booth Tour


Every CHA I cannot wait to go and visit the Tim Holtz idea-ology booth; It reminds me of visiting my great-grandmother’s house when I was little with vintage goodies hiding in every nook and cranny.  She had one of those big, bronze cash register with the giant buttons, hundreds of spools of thread lined up in rainbow formation and large room partitions that had postcards, stickers, and other memorabilia from her extensive travels.  What Tim and his creative team of […]

Melbourne Trip 2015- Art & Architecture

I love love love to travel…and taking in the public art and architecture is a BIG part of my travel experience. Just taking these new sights in really influences my art and craft design sensibilities. In this 4-minute video, I share with you the highlights of my week in Melbourne, Australia, focusing on old architecture, NEW architecture, public art, and GRAFFITI! Take a peek:   So…my broad takeaways of Melbourne: It’s a very “European” city- lots of foreign speakers, travelers […]

CHA 2015 – Heidi Swapp Booth and Minc Video

Heidi Swapp CHA 2015

If you are a regular reader of Craft Test Dummies, you know that I am a HUGE fan of Heidi Swapp.  Heidi has a been a fixture in the paper crafting industry for over a decade and has always been a never-ending source of inspiration for me.  Her products always trigger my creative side and prove to be incredibly versatile.  This year at CHA, Heidi did not disappoint as we got to see a plethora of new products!  Check out […]

CHA 2015 – Beadalon 3D Bracelet Jig


Hey crafters!  This year at CHA Beadalon took home the award the Top Product of the show for their brand new 3D wire bracelet jig.  You can make all kinds of fun bracelets with this clever tool!  I can imagine this being a must-have tool for any and all jewelry makers and beaders, from beginner’s to seasoned veterans.  Take a look at our video demo below from the show and let us know if you have any questions!     […]

CHA 2015 Debut – Ken Oliver Crafts

Ken Oliver Crafts

This year at CHA seasoned designer and crafter, Ken Oliver, debuted his very own line of paper products and stamps at the show.  Ken has four new paper lines as well as color bursts, stamp pegz and click-it stamp pads.  We were fortunate enough to have Ken show us some of these new fabulous products in a few video demos.  Take a look at the videos and some of the booth candy let us know what you think!   We […]